Habitat diversity


Heterogeneous habitat provides more opportunities for species to survive. This indicator uses "specified area monitoring" to assess the health status of the habitat. If the assessment status is shown to be poor, it can prompt the land manager to communicate with the government to make an appropriate response.

Indicator Details


Sensitive habitats

PSBR model type

Status (S)

Corresponding targets


15.1 By 2020, ensure the conservation, restoration and sustainable use of terrestrial and inland freshwater ecosystems and their services, in particular forests, wetlands, mountains and drylands, in line with obligations under international agreements. 15.4 By 2030, ensure the conservation of mountain ecosystems, including their biodiversity, in order to enhance their capacity to provide benefits that are essential for sustainable development. 15.5 Take urgent and significant action to reduce the degradation of natural habitats, halt the loss of biodiversity and, by 2020, protect and prevent the extinction of threatened species.

Aichi Biodiversity Targets

Target 15: By 2020, ecosystem resilience and the contribution of biodiversity to carbon stocks has been enhanced, through conservation and restoration, including restoration of at least 15 per cent of degraded ecosystems, thereby contributing to climate change mitigation and adaptation and to combating desertification.


The loss of biodiversity is due to many factors, such as climate change, alien species invasion and pollution. However, in the Red List of Threatened Species published by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) in 1994 and 2004, the "habitat loss" is listed as the major reason for reducing biodiversity. Therefore, conservation requires habitat protection to maintain habitat diversity.

Definition and Calculation

"Habitat Diversity" is the assessment of habitat health, which provides a set of "attribute indicators" for assessing the status of species health in each designated area. Taking the assessment of forest land health as an example, the attribute indicators include tree species diversity and whether or not there are renewals, etc., and the monitoring methods chosen will depend on species monitored. Habitat range, species composition, and species population are surveyed in fieldwork to assess the health status, and the status is classified into seven levels:

Level Discription
Favourable Maintained The conservation objectives of an feature of interest were being met at the previous assessment, and are still being met. 
Favourable Recovered A feature of interest has regained favourable condition, having been recorded as unfavourable at the previous assessment.
Unfavourable Recovering A feature of interest has begun to show, or is continuing to show, a trend towards favourable condition.
Unfavourable No Change An feature of interest may be retained in a more-or-less steady state by repeated or continuing damage–it is unfavourable but neither declining or recovering. 
Unfavourable Declining Recovery is possible and may occur either spontaneously or if suitable management input is made.
Partially Destroyed It is possible to destroy sections or areas of certain features or to destroy parts of sites with no hope of reinstatement because part of the feature itself, or the habitat or processes essential to support it, has been removed or irretrievably altered.
Totally Destroyed The recording of a feature as destroyed will indicate the entire feature of interest has been affected to such an extent that there is no hope of recovery, perhaps because its supporting habitat or processes have been removed or irretrievably altered.



The data and temporal range

--(New methodology is under development by Endemic Species Research Institute)

Data Management Authorities

Endemic Species Research Institute, Council of Agriculture


Scottish Natural Heritage (2016) Condition of notified habitats.

Data Development Status