Student ResearcherAnudari Bayarkhangai, Mongolin Intern
Sidonie Horn '22, Major: Biology
Faculty MentorDr. Robert Rose
Effective conservation and management of protected areas require balancing the conservation of critical wildlife and ecosystem services with visitor usage within and surrounding the protected area. Facing exponential population growth and a global trend in people migrating to urban areas, the sustainable management of protected areas is especially critical in urban areas facing increasing human impact. Despite its relatively low global population, Mongolia has seen a dramatic migration of people from rural areas to the capital, Ulaanbaatar, in the last 30 years resulting in intensive urbanization and air pollution. This rapid urbanization in Ulaanbaatar has led to the expansion of high-end residential development as well as Ger districts that lack municipal planning in the outskirts of Ulaanbaatar.
Working alongside the Wildlife Conservation Society Mongolia Program Scientists, Sidonie and Anudari (a Mongolian intern working with WCS) utilized remote sensing data to conduct a geospatial analysis examining and quantifying the change in land use patterns within and surrounding Bogd Khan Strictly Protected Area, a UNESCO biosphere reserve and Strictly Protected Area. This analysis is being used to increase awareness of the pressures the Park is facing with an understanding of what is being lost will help identify options for increasing public support for increased protection of Mongolia’s National Parks.