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Wildlife corridors: All you need to know

Wildlife corridors: All you need to know

By daniele

What are wildlife corridors?

A wildlife corridor, habitat corridor, or green corridor is a connection across the landscape that links up areas of habitat, connecting wildlife populations separated by human activities or structures (such as roads, development, or logging).

Their main purpose is to allow an exchange of individuals between populations, which may help prevent the negative effects of inbreeding and reduced genetic diversity (via genetic drift) that often occur within isolated populations.

Furthermore, they support natural processes that occur in a healthy environment, including the movement of species to find resources such as food and water. In fewer words, corridors can contribute to the resilience of the landscape in a changing climate and help to reduce future greenhouse gas emissions by storing carbon in native vegetation. They can also support multiple land uses such as conservation, farming, and forestry.

Wildlife corridors at different scales

Wildlife corridors can range in size from small corridors established by local communities to large corridors spanning multiple landscapes. For instance, a small corridor might be an area along a creek that has been revegetated by a local community group to link two patches of forest. Then, native animals can use it to move more freely between ecological zones to find food, shelter, and more opportunities to breed.

On the other hand, we have large-scale corridors that might span tens or hundreds of kilometers across multiple landscape types and jurisdictions. Typically, these kinds of corridors would require collaboration between a wide range of groups working in partnership to manage them.

But overall, many smaller wildlife corridor projects may be undertaken as part of a larger corridor initiative, each making an important contribution to connecting the landscape.


Habitat corridors are usually categorized according to their width, but in this case, it is more related to their capacity because the more use it will get from species, However, the width-to-length ratio as well as design quality play just as important a role in creating the perfect corridor. Letโ€™s see the three width divisions that exist:

  • Regional (wider than 500 m); connect crucial ecological gradients, such as migration paths.
  • Sub-regional โ€“ (>300m wide); joins larger vegetated landscape elements, such as valley bottoms and ridgelines.
  • Local (some <50m); connect remnant patches of gullies, wetlands, ridgelines, etc.

Landscape elements that contribute to wildlife corridors

These are some of the most important landscape elements that contribute to wildlife corridors:

  • Native grasslands provide habitat and pasture
  • Linear strips of roadside and fence line vegetation form important links in the landscape
  • โ€˜Stepping stonesโ€™ of native vegetation, such as paddock trees link larger patches
  • Sensitively designed urban parks and gardens contribute habitat for native species
  • Free-flowing rivers transport nutrients and sediment to the sea
  • Fish travel between fresh and saltwater environments at different lifecycle stages

Land use practices that contribute to wildlife corridors

It should be noted that wildlife corridors can be created by adjusting land use practices to help retain, restore, and manage natural connections and interactions across the landscape. For that reason, weโ€™re going to show you some examples of land use that contributes to wildlife corridors:

  • Indigenous Protected Areas managed for cultural and ecological values
  • Restoration efforts such as revegetation link core habitat patches
  • National parks managed to preserve values and minimise impacts of invasive species
  • Private land conservation and stewardship
  • Development offsets contribute to habitat restoration and management
  • Periodic wetland inundation from environmental flows
  • Landcare and Coastcare groups manage local areas