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Protect ecosystem diversity: Establish large connected conserved areas

The first two layers depict Index of Ecological Integrity Scores (IEI-I) produced by the Conservation Assessment and Prioritization System (CAPS) at UMass Amherst for those areas identified as Biomap2 Core Habitat and Critical Natural Landscape. The colors represent different ecosystem types: forest = green, coastal uplands = orange, shrubland = yellow, freshwater wetland? & aquatic = blue, coastal wetland and aquatic = cyan. Darker colors indicate higher value. Conductance is a measure of importance for regional-scale connectivity based on the Critical Linkages analyses conducted by UMass Amherst. Areas with high conductance values are represented in brown; the darker the color the more valuable the area is for connectivity.


The first two layers depict Index of Ecological Integrity Scores (IEI-I) produced by the Conservation Assessment and...

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Adaptation Strategies and Actions

Protect ecosystem diversity: Establish large connected conserved areas

Adaptation type: 
Land protection


Protect ecosystem diversity


Establish large connected conservation areas
It is likely that trees and wildlife within large natural areas of thousands of acres will be most resilient to the impacts of climate change. Large areas of conserved land typically provide enough site and species diversity to sustain the impacts we expect from a changing climate. Though your land is not thousands of acres in size, it plays a very important part within the larger landscape. Combined with other properties, it is a part of a landscape that is thousands of acres in size.

Determine if your land is part of an important group of conserved land that acts as a core wildlife habitat area. Conserving connections between large conserved areas help species travel between these areas and find habitats that best fit the changing climate. Areas of high connectivity can also be seen on the map. Keeping some or all of your land undeveloped is the most important action you can take to address the impacts of climate change. Consider your land conservation options through conservation-based estate planning. For more information, see the Protect Land in Perpetuity page.

Three people standing in a forest

Work with your neighbors and local land trusts to conserve large areas of conserved lands and maintain wildlife corridors. If you work as a part of a town board, encourage your community to take a landscape view. Encourage your town board to reach out to private landowners and help them understand their conservation options, particularly those landowners close to other protected land, connected landscapes, and wildlife corridors. To maximize wildlife impact, consider building on core areas in eastern Massachusetts, and core and connected areas in central and western Massachusetts, where there is more opportunity.

Scope and Constraints

One-time action
Higher cost category
Funds available
Tax deductions available

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