Predicting species distributions from checklist data using site‐occupancy models

Predicting species distributions from checklist data using site‐occupancy models Aim (1) To increase awareness of the challenges induced by imperfect detection, which is a fundamental issue in species distribution modelling; (2) to emphasize the value of replicate observations for species distribution modelling; and (3) to show how ‘cheap’ checklist data in faunal/floral databases may be used for the rigorous modelling of distributions by site‐occupancy models. Location Switzerland. Methods We used checklist data collected by volunteers during 1999 and 2000 to analyse the distribution of the blue hawker, Aeshna cyanea (Odonata, Aeshnidae), a common dragonfly in Switzerland. We used data from repeated visits to 1‐ha pixels to derive ‘detection histories’ and apply site‐occupancy models to estimate the ‘true’ species distribution, i.e. corrected for imperfect detection. We modelled blue hawker distribution as a function of elevation and year and its detection probability of elevation, year and season. Results The best model contained cubic polynomial elevation effects for distribution and quadratic effects of elevation and season for detectability. We compared the site‐occupancy model with a conventional distribution model based on a generalized linear model, which assumes perfect detectability (p = 1). The conventional distribution map looked very different from the distribution map obtained using site‐occupancy models that accounted for the imperfect detection. The conventional model underestimated the species distribution by 60%, and the slope parameters of the occurrence–elevation relationship were also underestimated when assuming p = 1. Elevation was not only an important predictor of blue hawker occurrence, but also of the detection probability, with a bell‐shaped relationship. Furthermore, detectability increased over the season. The average detection probability was estimated at only 0.19 per survey. Main conclusions Conventional species distribution models do not model species distributions per se but rather the apparent distribution, i.e. an unknown proportion of species distributions. That unknown proportion is equivalent to detectability. Imperfect detection in conventional species distribution models yields underestimates of the extent of distributions and covariate effects that are biased towards zero. In addition, patterns in detectability will erroneously be ascribed to species distributions. In contrast, site‐occupancy models applied to replicated detection/non‐detection data offer a powerful framework for making inferences about species distributions corrected for imperfect detection. The use of ‘cheap’ checklist data greatly enhances the scope of applications of this useful class of models. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Biogeography Wiley

Predicting species distributions from checklist data using site‐occupancy models

Loading next page...
 
/lp/wiley/predicting-species-distributions-from-checklist-data-using-site-qnCyFuEkrK
Publisher
Wiley Subscription Services, Inc., A Wiley Company
Copyright
© 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd
ISSN
0305-0270
eISSN
1365-2699
D.O.I.
10.1111/j.1365-2699.2010.02345.x
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Aim (1) To increase awareness of the challenges induced by imperfect detection, which is a fundamental issue in species distribution modelling; (2) to emphasize the value of replicate observations for species distribution modelling; and (3) to show how ‘cheap’ checklist data in faunal/floral databases may be used for the rigorous modelling of distributions by site‐occupancy models. Location Switzerland. Methods We used checklist data collected by volunteers during 1999 and 2000 to analyse the distribution of the blue hawker, Aeshna cyanea (Odonata, Aeshnidae), a common dragonfly in Switzerland. We used data from repeated visits to 1‐ha pixels to derive ‘detection histories’ and apply site‐occupancy models to estimate the ‘true’ species distribution, i.e. corrected for imperfect detection. We modelled blue hawker distribution as a function of elevation and year and its detection probability of elevation, year and season. Results The best model contained cubic polynomial elevation effects for distribution and quadratic effects of elevation and season for detectability. We compared the site‐occupancy model with a conventional distribution model based on a generalized linear model, which assumes perfect detectability (p = 1). The conventional distribution map looked very different from the distribution map obtained using site‐occupancy models that accounted for the imperfect detection. The conventional model underestimated the species distribution by 60%, and the slope parameters of the occurrence–elevation relationship were also underestimated when assuming p = 1. Elevation was not only an important predictor of blue hawker occurrence, but also of the detection probability, with a bell‐shaped relationship. Furthermore, detectability increased over the season. The average detection probability was estimated at only 0.19 per survey. Main conclusions Conventional species distribution models do not model species distributions per se but rather the apparent distribution, i.e. an unknown proportion of species distributions. That unknown proportion is equivalent to detectability. Imperfect detection in conventional species distribution models yields underestimates of the extent of distributions and covariate effects that are biased towards zero. In addition, patterns in detectability will erroneously be ascribed to species distributions. In contrast, site‐occupancy models applied to replicated detection/non‐detection data offer a powerful framework for making inferences about species distributions corrected for imperfect detection. The use of ‘cheap’ checklist data greatly enhances the scope of applications of this useful class of models.

Journal

Journal of BiogeographyWiley

Published: Oct 1, 2010

References

You’re reading a free preview. Subscribe to read the entire article.


DeepDyve is your
personal research library

It’s your single place to instantly
discover and read the research
that matters to you.

Enjoy affordable access to
over 18 million articles from more than
15,000 peer-reviewed journals.

All for just $49/month

Explore the DeepDyve Library

Search

Query the DeepDyve database, plus search all of PubMed and Google Scholar seamlessly

Organize

Save any article or search result from DeepDyve, PubMed, and Google Scholar... all in one place.

Access

Get unlimited, online access to over 18 million full-text articles from more than 15,000 scientific journals.

Your journals are on DeepDyve

Read from thousands of the leading scholarly journals from SpringerNature, Elsevier, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford University Press and more.

All the latest content is available, no embargo periods.

See the journals in your area

DeepDyve

Freelancer

DeepDyve

Pro

Price

FREE

$49/month
$360/year

Save searches from
Google Scholar,
PubMed

Create lists to
organize your research

Export lists, citations

Read DeepDyve articles

Abstract access only

Unlimited access to over
18 million full-text articles

Print

20 pages / month

PDF Discount

20% off