Fence cliff edges to prevent individuals from falling

How is the evidence assessed?
  • Effectiveness
    not assessed
  • Certainty
    not assessed
  • Harms
    not assessed

Study locations

Key messages

  • One study evaluated the effects on reptile populations of fencing cliff edges to prevent individuals from falling. This study was in Australia.



  • Survival (1 study): One before-and-after study in Australia found that after installing a fence along a small cliff edge, fewer green turtle carcasses were found at the base of the cliff compared to before installation.


About key messages

Key messages provide a descriptive index to studies we have found that test this intervention.

Studies are not directly comparable or of equal value. When making decisions based on this evidence, you should consider factors such as study size, study design, reported metrics and relevance of the study to your situation, rather than simply counting the number of studies that support a particular interpretation.

Supporting evidence from individual studies

  1. A before-and-after study in 2010–2012 in a vegetated coral cay in Raine Island, the Great Barrier Reef, Australia (Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority 2012) found that fencing cliff edges to prevent green turtle Chelonia mydas falls reduced mortality. Fewer turtle carcasses were found at the base of the cliff after the fence was installed (2 carcasses) compared to before installation (60 carcasses). Fencing totalled 100 m of modified aluminium pool fencing (50 cm high with vertical bars at 30 cm intervals), which was installed in three areas around the tops of small cliffs on the eastern end of the island in November 2011. The fencing blocked off the cliff edges but kept open natural ramps for entrance and egress of turtles to the centre of the island. Surveys of the number and location of sea turtle carcasses on the island occurred in November 2011 (before installation) and December 2011 and February 2012 (after installation). 

    Study and other actions tested
Please cite as:

Sainsbury K.A., Morgan W.H., Watson M., Rotem G., Bouskila A., Smith R.K. & Sutherland W.J. (2021) Reptile Conservation: Global Evidence for the Effects of Interventions for reptiles. Conservation Evidence Series Synopsis. University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK.

Where has this evidence come from?

List of journals searched by synopsis

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Reptile Conservation

This Action forms part of the Action Synopsis:

Reptile Conservation
Reptile Conservation

Reptile Conservation - Published 2021

Reptile synopsis

What Works 2021 cover

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