1. NatureServe
    Chief Ecologist
    (703) 797-4802

    Patrick J. Comer is Chief Ecologist, NatureServe, responsible for coordinating initiatives to develop a classification of terrestrial and palustrine ecosystems across North America. He serves as consulting ecologist to develop maps of vegetation coverage for the southwest US with the National Gap Analysis Program with USGS. Mr. Comer holds an M.S. in natural resources (forest ecology) from the University of Michigan.

  1. NatureServe
    Senior Ecologist & Conservation Methods Coordinator
    (703) 908-1816

    Don Faber-Langendoen is Senior Ecologist and Conservation Methods Coordinator for NatureServe. He works closely with the NatureServe Network across North America and partners in Latin America to advance NatureServe’s mission of management and conservation of at-risk species and ecosystems. He has collaborated with state, federal agency, and international partners on standardized methods for classifying the diversity of ecosystems (through the International Vegetation Classification), and assessing their conservation status and ecological integrity. He serves as Editor-in-Chief for the Ecological Society of America’s USNVC Peer Review Board and co-chairs the CNVC Committee. He has assisted the Network on projects from Great Lakes marsh restoration to forest and wetland surveys, U.S. National Park vegetation mapping, and mangrove management. Prior to his work with NatureServe, Don conducted research in tallgrass prairies and oak savannas, and tropical forests in Colombia and Madagascar. He lives in Syracuse, New York.


Biodiversity Indicators

In our efforts to conserve biological diversity, we continually need to ask the question: How is it doing?  That is, we need an efficient set of measurements - or indicators - that will tell us about the health and integrity of biodiversity and the actions to ensure biodiversity conservation and sustainable use in any given place.

A rough-skinned newt (Taricha granulosa) in Opal Creek Wilderness, Oregon. The condition of amphibian populations can often be an important indicator of freshwater ecosystem health. Photo by Dave Huth.

Biodiversity indicators help us measure and monitor a) pressures or threats, such as trends in land and water use, habitat loss or invasive species, b) the state of species and ecosystems, such as the health of species or integrity of ecosystems, c) the conservation response, such as the protection of important biodiversity areas, and/or d) benefits to people, such as the ecosystem services that freshwater provides. Fine scale indicators may be developed to inform local decisions on the ground, such as determining the degree to which restoration or management practices are working. Broad scale indicators that aggregate information may be developed to report on the benefits of national environmental policy and conservation investments.

  1. IUCN Red List of Ecosystems

  2. Biodiversity Indicators Dashboard

    ProductData & Maps
  3. Ecological Integrity Assessment

    ProductStandards & Methods
  4. Wetland Mitigation – Ecological Performance Standards

  5. Ecological Integrity Assessment - Wetlands