In-situ conservation means "on-site conservation". It is the process of protecting an endangered plant or animal species in its natural habitat, either by protecting or cleaning up the habitat itself, or by defending the species from predators. Increasingly, this term is also being applied to the conservation of agricultural biodiversity in agroecosystems by farmers, especially those using unconventional farming practices.
Importance of wild life management (in-situ) for conserving biological diversity.
1. It is the least costly & in many cases only means available for biological diversity.
2. Rare genotypes are present which is often absent in ex-situ.
3. Collections are more safely kept without mechanical damage.
4. Co-evolution of a crop plant with other organisms, such as pollinators & potential pests & disease naturally occur.
5. Peculiar characteristics of each crop are easy to study in in-situ.
7. Coverage. A worldwide system of protected and multiple-use areas would allow a significant number of indigenous species and systems to be protected.
Risks faced by in-situ conservation.
(1) Demographic uncertainty resulting from random events in the survival and reproduction of individuals.
(2) Environmental uncertainty due to random, or at least unpredictable, changes in weather, food supply, and the populations of competitors, predators, parasites, etc.
(3) Natural catastrophes such as floods, fires, or droughts, which may occur at random intervals.
(4) Genetic uncertainty or random changes in genetic make-up due to genetic drift or inbreeding that alter the survival and reproductive probabilities of individuals.
Criteria of classifying protected areas.
· The degree of manipulative management need for or compatible with the established protection objectives.
· Degree of ecological tolerance of ecosystem / species concern.
· Degree to which different types of utilization of the area are compatible with the established objectives.
· The level of demand for different types of utilization & the management practically of accommodating these.
Features for the establishment of protected areas.
· Characteristic / unique eco system.
· Special species of interest : value , rarity , under thread.
· Size of unusual diversity : Knuckles range.
· Landscape / geophysical features : water falls & hot water spring.
· Hydrological protective function.
· Fascilitate for nature recreation.: tourism
· Sites for special scientific interest.
· Cultural sites : temples.
Range of options available within a protected area.
1. Maintaining trails, watch towers, hides /cleared lookout point for visitor use.
2. Planting of food plants / creation of water holes, saltlicks to encourage selected wildlife species.
3. Maintaining open feeding areas or clearing trial side vegetations to render wild life more visible to visitors.
4. Controlling predators, pets or competitors of species to be conserved.
5. Culling or restrict the movement of wild life considered to be too numerous / resons of stock health / to limit damage by wild life.
6. Cutting , burning or grazing of vegetation to maintain certain vegetation stage, : open savannah
7. Introductions, reintroductions / translocations of wildlife.
8. No visitors permitted entry, only vital protective management allowed : catching poachers ,putting out wild fires.
9. Scientific research involving only measurements, counts & observations : behavioral studies of primates.
10. Scientific research involving small scale manipulative experiments & collection of specimen for identification.
11. Public access routes traverse protected area.
12. Heavy use by visitors but a ban on all activities that threaten or disturb the natural settings
13. Collection of eggs , young or breeding stock for wild life rearing industries or restocking of denuded habitats.
14. Collections of villagers of dead wood for, fire wood also fruits, honey and other minor forest products.
15. Visitors fishing in water ways.
16. Traditional hunting & fishing practices.
17. Controlled seasonal hunting.
18. Habitat management to increase the no of animals for hunting , fishing or wildlife viewing for visitors.
19. Traditional human group living in the reserve in close harmony with ecosystem.
20. Grazing of domestic animals within the reserve.
21. Selective logging of timber.
22. Mining & quarrying may proceed in the reserve.
23. Agriculture mosaic landscape only preserved.
24. Clear felling followed by reforestation.
International system of categories
Category1 .A. Strict nature reserve: area available only for scientific research & environmental monitoring.: Ritigala.
B.widerness area: that is large area of un modified which is protected and managed to preserve its natural conditions : Knuckles
Category 11. National park : natural area of land / sea designated
· to protect the ecological integrity of one / more eco-systems
· Exclude exploration / occupation inimical to the purpose of designation of the area.
· Provide a foundation for spiritual scientific edu / recreational opportunities : yalla, udawallawa.
Category 111. natural & cultural features :sigiriya.
Category iv. habitat species management area : bindulla national park.
Category v. Protected landscape / sea scape : :hikkaduwa
Category v1. Manage reserve protected areas.
Areas under the dip of wild life conservation of Sri Lanka.
1. Strict nature reserve,
2. National park
3. Nature reserve
4. Jungle corridor
6. Marine reserve
7. Buffer zone