The Conservation Network of Horseshoe Crab Tachypleus tridentatus in Taiwan
The horseshoe crab Tachypleus tridentatus once thrived in the west coast of Taiwan. We started our research on the horseshoe crabs when we discovered a few juveniles crawling on mudflats in Kinmen Island in 1996. However, after a decade’s effort, the status of the horseshoe crab is still dangerously poor in Taiwan. The whole horseshoe crab conservation project could basically be described as a process of searching for missing links, not only in scientific understanding but also in many other social perspectives in order to construct the conservation network. The horseshoe crab has great value not only in economics but also in biodiversity, ecology, and the local culture of Taiwan. Thus, it adequately serves the role as a flagship species in coastal environments. An integrated approach to the conservation network has been formulated as a triadic framework, i.e., life history study, habitat requirement study, and community-based conservation action, along with six principles, including cultural concern, build-up of scientific knowledge, stakeholder organization, localization, input of younger generations, and industrialization (i.e., ecotourism).
KeywordsHorseshoe Crab Population Genetic Analysis Stakeholder Organization Flagship Species Conservation Network
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