WorldWideScience

Sample records for habitat suitability modelling

  1. Habitat Suitability Index Models: Mink

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Arthur W.

    1983-01-01

    The mink (Mustela vison) is a predatory, semiaquatic mammal that is generally associated with stream and river banks, lake shores, fresh and saltwater marshes, and marine shore habitats (Gerell 1970).  Mink are chiefly nocturnal and remain active throughout the year (Marshall 1936); Gerell 1969; Burgess 1978).  The species is adaptable in its use of habitat, modifying daily habits according to environmental conditions, particularly prey availability (Wise et al. 1981; Linn and Birds 1981; Birks and Linn 1982).  The species is tolerant of human activity and will inhabit suboptimum habitats as long as an adequate food source is available; however, mink will be more mobile and change home ranges more frequently under such conditions (Linn pers. comm.).

  2. Alligator, Alligator mississippiensis, habitat suitability index model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waddle, J. Hardin

    2017-01-01

    The 2012 Coastal Master Plan utilized Habitat Suitability Indices (HSIs) to evaluate potential project effects on wildlife species. Even though HSIs quantify habitat condition, which may not directly correlate to species abundance, they remain a practical and tractable way to assess changes in habitat quality from various restoration actions. As part of the legislatively mandated five year update to the 2012 plan, the wildlife habitat suitability indices were updated and revised using literature and existing field data where available. The outcome of these efforts resulted in improved, or in some cases entirely new suitability indices. This report describes the development of the habitat suitability indices for the American alligator, Alligator mississippiensis.

  3. A test of 3 models of Kirtland's warbler habitat suitability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mark D. Nelson; Richard R. Buech

    1996-01-01

    We tested 3 models of Kirtland's warbler (Dendroica kirtlandii) habitat suitability during a period when we believe there was a surplus of good quality breeding habitat. A jack pine canopy-cover model was superior to 2 jack pine stem-density models in predicting Kirtland's warbler habitat use and non-use. Estimated density of birds in high...

  4. Evaluation of habitat suitability index models for assessing biotic resources

    Science.gov (United States)

    John C. Rennie; Joseph D. Clark; James M. Sweeney

    2000-01-01

    Existing habitat suitability index (HSI) models are evaluated for assessing the biotic resources on Champion International Corporation (CIC) lands with data from a standard and an expanded timber inventory. Forty HSI models for 34 species that occur in the Southern Appalachians have been identified from the literature. All of the variables for 14 models are provided (...

  5. Using habitat suitability models to target invasive plant species surveys.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crall, Alycia W; Jarnevich, Catherine S; Panke, Brendon; Young, Nick; Renz, Mark; Morisette, Jeffrey

    2013-01-01

    Managers need new tools for detecting the movement and spread of nonnative, invasive species. Habitat suitability models are a popular tool for mapping the potential distribution of current invaders, but the ability of these models to prioritize monitoring efforts has not been tested in the field. We tested the utility of an iterative sampling design (i.e., models based on field observations used to guide subsequent field data collection to improve the model), hypothesizing that model performance would increase when new data were gathered from targeted sampling using criteria based on the initial model results. We also tested the ability of habitat suitability models to predict the spread of invasive species, hypothesizing that models would accurately predict occurrences in the field, and that the use of targeted sampling would detect more species with less sampling effort than a nontargeted approach. We tested these hypotheses on two species at the state scale (Centaurea stoebe and Pastinaca sativa) in Wisconsin (USA), and one genus at the regional scale (Tamarix) in the western United States. These initial data were merged with environmental data at 30-m2 resolution for Wisconsin and 1-km2 resolution for the western United States to produce our first iteration models. We stratified these initial models to target field sampling and compared our models and success at detecting our species of interest to other surveys being conducted during the same field season (i.e., nontargeted sampling). Although more data did not always improve our models based on correct classification rate (CCR), sensitivity, specificity, kappa, or area under the curve (AUC), our models generated from targeted sampling data always performed better than models generated from nontargeted data. For Wisconsin species, the model described actual locations in the field fairly well (kappa = 0.51, 0.19, P sampling did detect more species than nontargeted sampling with less sampling effort (chi2 = 47

  6. Landscape habitat suitability index software

    Science.gov (United States)

    William D. Dijak; Chadwick D. Rittenhouse; Michael A. Larson; Frank R. III Thompson; Joshua J. Millspaugh

    2007-01-01

    Habitat suitability index (HSI) models are traditionally used to evaluate habitat quality for wildlife at a local scale. Rarely have such models incorporated spatial relationships of habitat components. We introduce Landscape HSImodels, a new Microsoft Windowst (Microsoft, Redmond, WA)-based program that incorporates local habitat as well as landscape-scale attributes...

  7. Western Monarch and Milkweed Habitat Suitability Modeling Project- MaxEnt Model Outputs

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — Products include relative habitat suitability models of five milkweed species thought to be important to western monarchs that enough data points to allow for...

  8. Modeling habitat suitability for Greater Rheas based on satellite image texture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bellis, Laura M; Pidgeon, Anna M; Radeloff, Volker C; St-Louis, Véronique; Navarro, Joaquín L; Martella, Mónica B

    2008-12-01

    Many wild species are affected by human activities occurring at broad spatial scales. For instance, in South America, habitat loss threatens Greater Rhea (Rhea americana) populations, making it important to model and map their habitat to better target conservation efforts. Spatially explicit habitat modeling is a powerful approach to understand and predict species occurrence and abundance. One problem with this approach is that commonly used land cover classifications do not capture the variability within a given land cover class that might constitute important habitat attribute information. Texture measures derived from remote sensing images quantify the variability in habitat features among and within habitat types; hence they are potentially a powerful tool to assess species-habitat relationships. Our goal was to explore the utility of texture measures for habitat modeling and to develop a habitat suitability map for Greater Rheas at the home range level in grasslands of Argentina. Greater Rhea group size obtained from aerial surveys was regressed against distance to roads, houses, and water, and land cover class abundance (dicotyledons, crops, grassland, forest, and bare soil), normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI), and selected first- and second-order texture measures derived from Landsat Thematic Mapper (TM) imagery. Among univariate models, Rhea group size was most strongly positively correlated with texture variables derived from near infrared reflectance measurement (TM band 4). The best multiple regression models explained 78% of the variability in Greater Rhea group size. Our results suggest that texture variables captured habitat heterogeneity that the conventional land cover classification did not detect. We used Greater Rhea group size as an indicator of habitat suitability; we categorized model output into different habitat quality classes. Only 16% of the study area represented high-quality habitat for Greater Rheas (group size > or =15

  9. A method to create simplified versions of existing habitat suitability index (HSI) models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wakeley, James S.

    1988-01-01

    The habitat evaluation procedures (HEP), developed by the US Fish and Wildlife Service, are widely used in the United States to determine the impacts of major construction projects on fish and wildlife habitats. HEP relies heavily on habitat suitability index (HSI) models that use measurements of important habitat characteristics to rate habitat quality for a species on a scale of 0 (unsuitable) to 1.0 (optimal). This report describes a method to simplify existing HSI models to reduce the time and expense involved in sampling habitat variables. Simplified models for three species produced HSI values within 0.2 of those predicted by the original models 90% of the time. Simplified models are particularly useful for rapid habitat inventories and evaluations, wildlife management, and impact assessments in extensive areas or with limited time and personnel.

  10. Sex-specific habitat suitability models for Panthera tigris in Chitwan National Park, Nepal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Battle, Curtis Scott

    Although research on wildlife species across taxa has shown that males and females differentially select habitat, sex-specific models of habitat suitability for endangered species are uncommon. Here, we developed such models for Bengal Tigers (Panthera tigris) based on camera trap data collected from 20 January to 22 March, 2010, within Chitwan National Park, Nepal, and its buffer zone. We compared these to a sex-indiscriminate habitat suitability model in order to identify information that is lost when occurrence data for both sexes are included in the same model, as well as to assess the benefits of a sex-specific approach to habitat suitability modelling. Our sex-specific models allowed us to produce more informative and detailed habitat suitability maps, highlighting key differences in the distribution of suitable habitats for males and females, preferences in vegetation structure, and habitat use near human settlements. In the context of global tiger conservation, such information is essential to fulfilling established conservation goals and population recovery targets.

  11. Development of a Habitat Suitability Index Model for the Sage Sparrow on the Hanford Site

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Duberstein, Corey A.; Simmons, Mary Ann; Sackschewsky, Michael R.; Becker, James M.

    2008-01-01

    Mitigation threshold guidelines for the Hanford Site are based on habitat requirements of the sage sparrow (Amphispiza belli) and only apply to areas with a mature sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata) overstory and a native understory. The sage sparrow habitat requirements are based on literature values and are not specific to the Hanford Site. To refine these guidelines for the Site, a multi-year study was undertaken to quantify habitat characteristics of sage sparrow territories. These characteristics were then used to develop a habitat suitability index (HSI) model which can be used to estimate the habitat value of specific locations on the Site.

  12. Creating a Ruggedness Layer for Use in Habitat Suitability Modeling for Ikh Nart Nature Reserve, Mongolia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nanette Bragin

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Spatially-explicit wildlife habitat models are increasingly used to study optimal habitat for species of conservation focus. A ruggedness layer, that summarizes aspect and slope, provides a useful tool for analyses conducted in a Geographic Information System (GIS, such as developing a habitat suitability index model to measure species habitat use. Ruggedness layers prove especially useful in areas where topography represents a key habitat component. We created a ruggedness layer for the Ikh Nart Nature Reserve and surrounding areas in northern Dornogobi Aimag (province, Mongolia. Using a 90 m Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM digital elevation model (DEM and ArcGIS 10 spatial analyst, we created 9 categories for ruggedness. When combined with other thematic layers such as vegetation, the ruggedness layer becomes a powerful tool for analyzing habitat use by individual animals. The results of such analyses may inform decision makers in protected area planning and conservation of endangered species.

  13. Physiology-based modelling approaches to characterize fish habitat suitability

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Teal, L.R.; Marras, Stefano; Peck, M.A.; Domenici, Paolo

    2015-01-01

    Models are useful tools for predicting the impact of global change on species distribution and abundance. As ectotherms, fish are being challenged to adapt or track changes in their environment, either in time through a phenological shift or in space by a biogeographic shift. Past modelling efforts

  14. Multi-criteria Decision Analysis to Model Ixodes ricinus Habitat Suitability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rousseau, Raphaël; McGrath, Guy; McMahon, Barry J; Vanwambeke, Sophie O

    2017-09-01

    Tick-borne diseases present a major threat to both human and livestock health throughout Europe. The risk of infection is directly related to the presence of its vector. Thereby it is important to know their distribution, which is strongly associated with environmental factors: the presence and availability of a suitable habitat, of a suitable climate and of hosts. The present study models the habitat suitability for Ixodes ricinus in Ireland, where data on tick distribution are scarce. Tick habitat suitability was estimated at a coarse scale (10 km) with a multi-criteria decision analysis (MCDA) method according to four different scenarios (depending on the variables used and on the weights granted to each of them). The western part of Ireland and the Wicklow mountains in the East were estimated to be the most suitable areas for I. ricinus in the island. There was a good level of agreement between results from the MCDA and recorded tick presence. The different scenarios did not affect the spatial outputs substantially. The current study suggests that tick habitat suitability can be mapped accurately at a coarse scale in a data-scarce context using knowledge-based methods. It can serve as a guideline for future countrywide sampling that would help to determine local risk of tick presence and refining knowledge on tick habitat suitability in Ireland.

  15. Habitat suitability index model for black bear (Ursus americanus)

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — This descriptive model applies only to black bear in the coastal forests and adjacent vegetative communities, which extend from Afognak Island and the shores of...

  16. Modelling the habitat suitability of cetaceans: Example of the sperm whale in the northwestern Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Praca, Emilie; Gannier, Alexandre; Das, Krishna; Laran, Sophie

    2009-04-01

    Cetaceans are mobile and spend long periods underwater. Because of this, modelling their habitat could be subject to a serious problem of false absence. Furthermore, extensive surveys at sea are time and money consuming, and presence-absence data are difficult to apply. This study compares the ability of two presence-absence and two presence-only habitat modelling methods and uses the example of the sperm whale ( Physeter macrocephalus) in the northwestern Mediterranean Sea. The data consist of summer visual and acoustical detections of sperm whales, compiled between 1998 and 2005. Habitat maps were computed using topographical and hydrological eco-geographical variables. Four methods were compared: principal component analysis (PCA), ecological niche factor analysis (ENFA), generalized linear model (GLM) and multivariate adaptive regression splines (MARS). The evaluation of the models was achieved by calculating the receiver operating characteristic (ROC) of the models and their respective area under the curve (AUC). Presence-absence methods (GLM, AUC=0.70, and MARS, AUC=0.79) presented better AUC than presence-only methods (PCA, AUC=0.58, and ENFA, AUC=0.66), but this difference was not statistically significant, except between the MARS and the PCA models. The four models showed an influence of both topographical and hydrological factors, but the resulting habitat suitability maps differed. The core habitat on the continental slope was well highlighted by the four models, while GLM and MARS maps also showed a suitable habitat in the offshore waters. Presence-absence methods are therefore recommended for modelling the habitat suitability of cetaceans, as they seem more accurate to highlight complex habitat. However, the use of presence-only techniques, in particular ENFA, could be very useful for a first model of the habitat range or when important surveys at sea are not possible.

  17. Habitat Suitability Modelling of Brown Bear (Ursus arctos in Shimbar Protected Area, Khuzestan Province

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Z. Obeidavi

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Status determination of wildlife habitats is very important in conservation programs and management of wildlife. So, in this study Ursus arctos habitat suitability was modeled using maximum entropy algorithm (MaxEnt in Shimbar protected area. In order to model the habitat suitability, after investigating and resolving the spatial autocorrelation of occurrence records, spatially independent localities were divided into the calibration and evaluation sets and then were combined with 10 environmental variables (VIF<10 selected by MMS software. The performance of predictive models was tested using AUC and jackknife validation test. So, we applied two different thresholds, the LPT threshold and 10% threshold to generate presence/absence map. Also other Jackknife tests applied to measure variables importance. The results showed that predictive model was more efficient than random model (AUC=0.980. In addition, the potential suitable areas cover 20.75% of study area. The MaxEnt model had 88.46% success rate and was statistically significant (P = 0.000. Results of Jackknife showed that ‘plant type’ variable alone contains valuable information for modelling. Our study demonstrated that habitat suitability was successfully predicted by MaxEnt modelling, so this methodology might provide a powerful tool for improving the wildlife habitats information.

  18. Ensemble modeling to predict habitat suitability for a large-scale disturbance specialist

    Science.gov (United States)

    Latif, Quresh S; Saab, Victoria A; Dudley, Jonathan G; Hollenbeck, Jeff P

    2013-01-01

    To conserve habitat for disturbance specialist species, ecologists must identify where individuals will likely settle in newly disturbed areas. Habitat suitability models can predict which sites at new disturbances will most likely attract specialists. Without validation data from newly disturbed areas, however, the best approach for maximizing predictive accuracy can be unclear (Northwestern U.S.A.). We predicted habitat suitability for nesting Black-backed Woodpeckers (Picoides arcticus; a burned-forest specialist) at 20 recently (≤6 years postwildfire) burned locations in Montana using models calibrated with data from three locations in Washington, Oregon, and Idaho. We developed 8 models using three techniques (weighted logistic regression, Maxent, and Mahalanobis D2 models) and various combinations of four environmental variables describing burn severity, the north–south orientation of topographic slope, and prefire canopy cover. After translating model predictions into binary classifications (0 = low suitability to unsuitable, 1 = high to moderate suitability), we compiled “ensemble predictions,” consisting of the number of models (0–8) predicting any given site as highly suitable. The suitability status for 40% of the area burned by eastside Montana wildfires was consistent across models and therefore robust to uncertainty in the relative accuracy of particular models and in alternative ecological hypotheses they described. Ensemble predictions exhibited two desirable properties: (1) a positive relationship with apparent rates of nest occurrence at calibration locations and (2) declining model agreement outside surveyed environments consistent with our reduced confidence in novel (i.e., “no-analogue”) environments. Areas of disagreement among models suggested where future surveys could help validate and refine models for an improved understanding of Black-backed Woodpecker nesting habitat relationships. Ensemble predictions presented here can

  19. An Expert-Based Assessment Model for Evaluating Habitat Suitability of Pond-Breeding Amphibians

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shin-Ruoh Juang

    2017-02-01

    reliability of the habitat suitability assessment model. In brief, the proposed method can be applied, not only to assess the sustainability of frog habitats and degradation risks, but also to determine which locations may require future attention regarding conservation implementation. Furthermore, findings in this study provide useful background knowledge to all associated stakeholders when designing and implementing plans of wildlife habitat management and restoration at farm ponds.

  20. Summer and winter habitat suitability of Marco Polo argali in southeastern Tajikistan: A modeling approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salas, Eric Ariel L; Valdez, Raul; Michel, Stefan

    2017-11-01

    We modeled summer and winter habitat suitability of Marco Polo argali in the Pamir Mountains in southeastern Tajikistan using these statistical algorithms: Generalized Linear Model, Random Forest, Boosted Regression Tree, Maxent, and Multivariate Adaptive Regression Splines. Using sheep occurrence data collected from 2009 to 2015 and a set of selected habitat predictors, we produced summer and winter habitat suitability maps and determined the important habitat suitability predictors for both seasons. Our results demonstrated that argali selected proximity to riparian areas and greenness as the two most relevant variables for summer, and the degree of slope (gentler slopes between 0° to 20°) and Landsat temperature band for winter. The terrain roughness was also among the most important variables in summer and winter models. Aspect was only significant for winter habitat, with argali preferring south-facing mountain slopes. We evaluated various measures of model performance such as the Area Under the Curve (AUC) and the True Skill Statistic (TSS). Comparing the five algorithms, the AUC scored highest for Boosted Regression Tree in summer (AUC = 0.94) and winter model runs (AUC = 0.94). In contrast, Random Forest underperformed in both model runs.

  1. Summer and winter habitat suitability of Marco Polo argali in southeastern Tajikistan: A modeling approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eric Ariel L. Salas

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available We modeled summer and winter habitat suitability of Marco Polo argali in the Pamir Mountains in southeastern Tajikistan using these statistical algorithms: Generalized Linear Model, Random Forest, Boosted Regression Tree, Maxent, and Multivariate Adaptive Regression Splines. Using sheep occurrence data collected from 2009 to 2015 and a set of selected habitat predictors, we produced summer and winter habitat suitability maps and determined the important habitat suitability predictors for both seasons. Our results demonstrated that argali selected proximity to riparian areas and greenness as the two most relevant variables for summer, and the degree of slope (gentler slopes between 0° to 20° and Landsat temperature band for winter. The terrain roughness was also among the most important variables in summer and winter models. Aspect was only significant for winter habitat, with argali preferring south-facing mountain slopes. We evaluated various measures of model performance such as the Area Under the Curve (AUC and the True Skill Statistic (TSS. Comparing the five algorithms, the AUC scored highest for Boosted Regression Tree in summer (AUC = 0.94 and winter model runs (AUC = 0.94. In contrast, Random Forest underperformed in both model runs. Keywords: Ecology, Evolution, Zoology, Environmental science, Geography, Biological sciences

  2. Habitat suitability models for cavity-nesting birds in a postfire landscape

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robin E. Russell; Victoria A. Saab; Jonathan G. Dudley

    2007-01-01

    Models of habitat suitability in postfire landscapes are needed by land managers to make timely decisions regarding postfire timber harvest and other management activities. Many species of cavity-nesting birds are dependent on postfire landscapes for breeding and other aspects of their life history and are responsive to postfire management activities (e.g., timber...

  3. Simultaneous modeling of habitat suitability, occupancy, and relative abundance: African elephants in Zimbabwe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Julien; Chamaille-Jammes, Simon; Nichols, James D.; Fritz, Herve; Hines, James E.; Fonnesbeck, Christopher J.; MacKenzie, Darryl I.; Bailey, Larissa L.

    2010-01-01

    The recent development of statistical models such as dynamic site occupancy models provides the opportunity to address fairly complex management and conservation problems with relatively simple models. However, surprisingly few empirical studies have simultaneously modeled habitat suitability and occupancy status of organisms over large landscapes for management purposes. Joint modeling of these components is particularly important in the context of management of wild populations, as it provides a more coherent framework to investigate the population dynamics of organisms in space and time for the application of management decision tools. We applied such an approach to the study of water hole use by African elephants in Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe. Here we show how such methodology may be implemented and derive estimates of annual transition probabilities among three dry-season states for water holes: (1) unsuitable state (dry water holes with no elephants); (2) suitable state (water hole with water) with low abundance of elephants; and (3) suitable state with high abundance of elephants. We found that annual rainfall and the number of neighboring water holes influenced the transition probabilities among these three states. Because of an increase in elephant densities in the park during the study period, we also found that transition probabilities from low abundance to high abundance states increased over time. The application of the joint habitat–occupancy models provides a coherent framework to examine how habitat suitability and factors that affect habitat suitability influence the distribution and abundance of organisms. We discuss how these simple models can further be used to apply structured decision-making tools in order to derive decisions that are optimal relative to specified management objectives. The modeling framework presented in this paper should be applicable to a wide range of existing data sets and should help to address important ecological

  4. A GIS model of habitat suitability for Solanum conocarpum (Solanaceae) in St. John, US Virgin Islands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palumbo, Matthew D.; Fleming, Jonathan P.; Monsegur, Omar A.; Vilella, Francisco

    2016-01-01

    Solanum conocarpum (Solanaceae) (Marron Bacora) is a rare, dry-forest shrub endemic to the island of St. John, US Virgin Islands, considered for listing under the Endangered Species Act. Given its status as a species of conservation concern, we incorporated environmental characteristics of 3 observed populations and 5 additional known locations into a geographic information system (GIS) analysis to create a habitat-suitability model for the species on the island of St. John. Our model identified 1929.87 ha of highly suitable and moderately suitable habitat. Of these, 1161.20 ha (60.2%) occurred within the boundaries of Virgin Islands National Park. Our model provides spatial information on potential locations for future surveys and restoration sites for this endemic species of the US Virgin Islands.

  5. Modelling seasonal habitat suitability for wide-ranging species: Invasive wild pigs in northern Australia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jens G Froese

    Full Text Available Invasive wildlife often causes serious damage to the economy and agriculture as well as environmental, human and animal health. Habitat models can fill knowledge gaps about species distributions and assist planning to mitigate impacts. Yet, model accuracy and utility may be compromised by small study areas and limited integration of species ecology or temporal variability. Here we modelled seasonal habitat suitability for wild pigs, a widespread and harmful invader, in northern Australia. We developed a resource-based, spatially-explicit and regional-scale approach using Bayesian networks and spatial pattern suitability analysis. We integrated important ecological factors such as variability in environmental conditions, breeding requirements and home range movements. The habitat model was parameterized during a structured, iterative expert elicitation process and applied to a wet season and a dry season scenario. Model performance and uncertainty was evaluated against independent distributional data sets. Validation results showed that an expert-averaged model accurately predicted empirical wild pig presences in northern Australia for both seasonal scenarios. Model uncertainty was largely associated with different expert assumptions about wild pigs' resource-seeking home range movements. Habitat suitability varied considerably between seasons, retracting to resource-abundant rainforest, wetland and agricultural refuge areas during the dry season and expanding widely into surrounding grassland floodplains, savanna woodlands and coastal shrubs during the wet season. Overall, our model suggested that suitable wild pig habitat is less widely available in northern Australia than previously thought. Mapped results may be used to quantify impacts, assess risks, justify management investments and target control activities. Our methods are applicable to other wide-ranging species, especially in data-poor situations.

  6. Modelling seasonal habitat suitability for wide-ranging species: Invasive wild pigs in northern Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Froese, Jens G; Smith, Carl S; Durr, Peter A; McAlpine, Clive A; van Klinken, Rieks D

    2017-01-01

    Invasive wildlife often causes serious damage to the economy and agriculture as well as environmental, human and animal health. Habitat models can fill knowledge gaps about species distributions and assist planning to mitigate impacts. Yet, model accuracy and utility may be compromised by small study areas and limited integration of species ecology or temporal variability. Here we modelled seasonal habitat suitability for wild pigs, a widespread and harmful invader, in northern Australia. We developed a resource-based, spatially-explicit and regional-scale approach using Bayesian networks and spatial pattern suitability analysis. We integrated important ecological factors such as variability in environmental conditions, breeding requirements and home range movements. The habitat model was parameterized during a structured, iterative expert elicitation process and applied to a wet season and a dry season scenario. Model performance and uncertainty was evaluated against independent distributional data sets. Validation results showed that an expert-averaged model accurately predicted empirical wild pig presences in northern Australia for both seasonal scenarios. Model uncertainty was largely associated with different expert assumptions about wild pigs' resource-seeking home range movements. Habitat suitability varied considerably between seasons, retracting to resource-abundant rainforest, wetland and agricultural refuge areas during the dry season and expanding widely into surrounding grassland floodplains, savanna woodlands and coastal shrubs during the wet season. Overall, our model suggested that suitable wild pig habitat is less widely available in northern Australia than previously thought. Mapped results may be used to quantify impacts, assess risks, justify management investments and target control activities. Our methods are applicable to other wide-ranging species, especially in data-poor situations.

  7. Predictive habitat suitability models to aid conservation of elasmobranch diversity in the central Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lauria, V.; Gristina, M.; Attrill, M. J.; Fiorentino, F.; Garofalo, G.

    2015-08-01

    Commercial fisheries have dramatically impacted elasmobranch populations worldwide. With high capture and bycatch rates, the abundance of many species is rapidly declining and around a quarter of the world’s sharks and rays are threatened with extinction. At a regional scale this negative trend has also been evidenced in the central Mediterranean Sea, where bottom-trawl fisheries have affected the biomass of certain rays (e.g. Raja clavata) and sharks (e.g. Mustelus spp.). Detailed knowledge of elasmobranch habitat requirements is essential for biodiversity conservation and fisheries management, but this is often hampered by a poor understanding of their spatial ecology. Habitat suitability models were used to investigate the habitat preference of nine elasmobranch species and their overall diversity (number of species) in relation to five environmental predictors (i.e. depth, sea surface temperature, surface salinity, slope and rugosity) in the central Mediterranean Sea. Results showed that depth, seafloor morphology and sea surface temperature were the main drivers for elasmobranch habitat suitability. Predictive distribution maps revealed different species-specific patterns of suitable habitat while high assemblage diversity was predicted in deeper offshore waters (400-800 m depth). This study helps to identify priority conservation areas and diversity hot-spots for rare and endangered elasmobranchs in the Mediterranean Sea.

  8. Dynamic habitat suitability modelling reveals rapid poleward distribution shift in a mobile apex predator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hill, Nicholas J; Tobin, Andrew J; Reside, April E; Pepperell, Julian G; Bridge, Tom C L

    2016-03-01

    Many taxa are undergoing distribution shifts in response to anthropogenic climate change. However, detecting a climate signal in mobile species is difficult due to their wide-ranging, patchy distributions, often driven by natural climate variability. For example, difficulties associated with assessing pelagic fish distributions have rendered fisheries management ill-equipped to adapt to the challenges posed by climate change, leaving pelagic species and ecosystems vulnerable. Here, we demonstrate the value of citizen science data for modelling the dynamic habitat suitability of a mobile pelagic predator (black marlin, Istiompax indica) within the south-west Pacific Ocean. The extensive spatial and temporal coverage of our occurrence data set (n = 18 717), collected at high resolution (~1.85 km(2) ), enabled identification of suitable habitat at monthly time steps over a 16-year period (1998-2013). We identified considerable monthly, seasonal and interannual variability in the extent and distribution of suitable habitat, predominately driven by chlorophyll a and sea surface height. Interannual variability correlated with El Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO) events, with suitable habitat extending up to ~300 km further south during La Nina events. Despite the strong influence of ENSO, our model revealed a rapid poleward shift in the geometric mean of black marlin habitat, occurring at 88.2 km decade(-1) . By incorporating multiple environmental factors at monthly time steps, we were able to demonstrate a rapid distribution shift in a mobile pelagic species. Our findings suggest that the rapid velocity of climate change in the south-west Pacific Ocean is likely affecting mobile pelagic species, indicating that they may be more vulnerable to climate change than previously thought. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  9. Hyperspectral Mapping of the Invasive Species Pepperweed and the Development of a Habitat Suitability Model

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    Nguyen, Andrew; Gole, Alexander; Randall, Jarom; Dlott, Glade; Zhang, Sylvia; Alfaro, Brian; Schmidt, Cindy; Skiles, J. W.

    2011-01-01

    Mapping and predicting the spatial distribution of invasive plant species is central to habitat management, however difficult to implement at landscape and regional scales. Remote sensing techniques can reduce the impact field campaigns have on these ecologically sensitive areas and can provide a regional and multi-temporal view of invasive species spread. Invasive perennial pepperweed (Lepidium latifolium) is now widespread in fragmented estuaries of the South San Francisco Bay, and is shown to degrade native vegetation in estuaries and adjacent habitats, thereby reducing forage and shelter for wildlife. The purpose of this study is to map the present distribution of pepperweed in estuarine areas of the South San Francisco Bay Salt Pond Restoration Project (Alviso, CA), and create a habitat suitability model to predict future spread. Pepperweed reflectance data were collected in-situ with a GER 1500 spectroradiometer along with 88 corresponding pepperweed presence and absence points used for building the statistical models. The spectral angle mapper (SAM) classification algorithm was used to distinguish the reflectance spectrum of pepperweed and map its distribution using an image from EO-1 Hyperion. To map pepperweed, we performed a supervised classification on an ASTER image with a resulting classification accuracy of 71.8%. We generated a weighted overlay analysis model within a geographic information system (GIS) framework to predict areas in the study site most susceptible to pepperweed colonization. Variables for the model included propensity for disturbance, status of pond restoration, proximity to water channels, and terrain curvature. A Generalized Additive Model (GAM) was also used to generate a probability map and investigate the statistical probability that each variable contributed to predict pepperweed spread. Results from the GAM revealed distance to channels, distance to ponds and curvature were statistically significant (p < 0.01) in determining

  10. Hyperspectral Mapping of the Invasive Species Pepperweed and the Development of a Habitat Suitability Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nguyen, A.; Gole, A.; Randall, J.; Dlott, G. A.; Zhang, S.; Alfaro, B.; Schmidt, C.; Skiles, J. W.

    2011-12-01

    Mapping and predicting the spatial distribution of invasive plant species is central to habitat management, however difficult to implement at landscape and regional scales. Remote sensing techniques can reduce the cost of field campaigns and can provide a regional and multi-temporal view of invasive species spread. Invasive perennial pepperweed (Lepidium latifolium) is now widespread in fragmented estuaries of the South San Francisco Bay, and is shown to degrade native vegetation in estuaries and adjacent habitats, thereby reducing forage and shelter for wildlife. The purpose of this study is to map the current distribution of pepperweed in estuarine areas of the South San Francisco Bay Salt Pond Restoration Project, and create a habitat suitability model to predict future spread. Pepperweed reflectance data were collected in-situ with a GER 1500 spectroradiometer along with 88 corresponding pepperweed presence and absence points used for building the statistical models. The spectral angle mapper (SAM) classification algorithm was used to distinguish the reflectance spectrum of pepperweed and map its distribution using an EO-1 Hyperion satellite image. To map pepperweed, a supervised classification was performed on an ASTER image with a resulting classification accuracy of 71.8%. We generated a weighted overlay analysis model within a geographic information system (GIS) framework to predict areas in the study site most susceptible to pepperweed colonization. Variables for the model included propensity for disturbance, status of pond restoration, proximity to water channels, and terrain curvature. A Generalized Additive Model (GAM) was also used to generate a probability map and investigate the statistical probability that each variable contributed to predict pepperweed spread. Results from the GAM revealed distance to channels, distance to ponds and curvature were statistically significant (p < 0.01) in determining the locations of suitable pepperweed habitats.

  11. Developing Theoretical Marine Habitat Suitability Models from Remotely-Sensed Data and Traditional Ecological Knowledge

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patrick M. Olsen

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available There is a lack of information regarding critical habitats for many marine species, including the bearded seal, an important subsistence species for the indigenous residents of Arctic regions. A systematic approach to modeling marine mammal habitat in arctic regions using the lifetime and multi-generational Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK of Alaska Native hunters is developed to address this gap. The approach uses lifetime and cross-generational knowledge of subsistence hunters and their harvest data in the place of observational knowledge gained from Western scientific field surveys of marine mammal sightings. TEK information for mid-June to October was transformed to seal presence/pseudo-absence and used to train Classification Tree Analyses of environmental predictor variables to predict suitable habitat for bearded seals in the Bering Strait region. Predictor variables were derived from a suite of terrestrial, oceanic, and atmospheric remote sensing products, transformed using trend analysis techniques, and aggregated. A Kappa of 0.883 was achieved for habitat classifications. The TEK information used is spatially restricted, but provides a viable, replicable data source that can replace or complement Western scientific observational data.

  12. Habitat suitability index model of the sea cucumber Apostichopus japonicus (Selenka): A case study of Shandong Peninsula, China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Zhipeng; Zhou, Jian; Song, Jingjing; Wang, Qixiang; Liu, Hongjun; Tang, Xuexi

    2017-09-15

    A habitat suitability index (HSI) model for the sea cucumber Apostichopus japonicus (Selenka) was established in the present study. Based on geographic information systems, the HSI model was used to identify potential sites around the Shandong Peninsula suitable for restoration of immature (25g) A. japonicus. Six habitat factors were used as input variables for the HSI model: sediment classification, water temperature, salinity, water depth, pH and dissolved oxygen. The weighting of each habitat factor was defined through the Delphi method. Sediment classification was the most important condition affecting the HSI of A. japonicus in the different study areas, while water temperature was the most important condition in different seasons. The HSI of Western Laizhou Bay was relatively low, meaning the site was not suitable for aquaculture-based restoration of A. japonicus. In contrast, Xiaoheishan Island, Rongcheng Bay and Qingdao were preferable sites, suitable as habitats for restoration efforts. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Spatial Heterogeneity of Habitat Suitability for Rift Valley Fever Occurrence in Tanzania: An Ecological Niche Modelling Approach.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Calvin Sindato

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Despite the long history of Rift Valley fever (RVF in Tanzania, extent of its suitable habitat in the country remains unclear. In this study we investigated potential effects of temperature, precipitation, elevation, soil type, livestock density, rainfall pattern, proximity to wild animals, protected areas and forest on the habitat suitability for RVF occurrence in Tanzania.Presence-only records of 193 RVF outbreak locations from 1930 to 2007 together with potential predictor variables were used to model and map the suitable habitats for RVF occurrence using ecological niche modelling. Ground-truthing of the model outputs was conducted by comparing the levels of RVF virus specific antibodies in cattle, sheep and goats sampled from locations in Tanzania that presented different predicted habitat suitability values.Habitat suitability values for RVF occurrence were higher in the northern and central-eastern regions of Tanzania than the rest of the regions in the country. Soil type and precipitation of the wettest quarter contributed equally to habitat suitability (32.4% each, followed by livestock density (25.9% and rainfall pattern (9.3%. Ground-truthing of model outputs revealed that the odds of an animal being seropositive for RVFV when sampled from areas predicted to be most suitable for RVF occurrence were twice the odds of an animal sampled from areas least suitable for RVF occurrence (95% CI: 1.43, 2.76, p < 0.001.The regions in the northern and central-eastern Tanzania were more suitable for RVF occurrence than the rest of the regions in the country. The modelled suitable habitat is characterised by impermeable soils, moderate precipitation in the wettest quarter, high livestock density and a bimodal rainfall pattern. The findings of this study should provide guidance for the design of appropriate RVF surveillance, prevention and control strategies which target areas with these characteristics.

  14. Spatial Heterogeneity of Habitat Suitability for Rift Valley Fever Occurrence in Tanzania: An Ecological Niche Modelling Approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sindato, Calvin; Stevens, Kim B; Karimuribo, Esron D; Mboera, Leonard E G; Paweska, Janusz T; Pfeiffer, Dirk U

    2016-09-01

    Despite the long history of Rift Valley fever (RVF) in Tanzania, extent of its suitable habitat in the country remains unclear. In this study we investigated potential effects of temperature, precipitation, elevation, soil type, livestock density, rainfall pattern, proximity to wild animals, protected areas and forest on the habitat suitability for RVF occurrence in Tanzania. Presence-only records of 193 RVF outbreak locations from 1930 to 2007 together with potential predictor variables were used to model and map the suitable habitats for RVF occurrence using ecological niche modelling. Ground-truthing of the model outputs was conducted by comparing the levels of RVF virus specific antibodies in cattle, sheep and goats sampled from locations in Tanzania that presented different predicted habitat suitability values. Habitat suitability values for RVF occurrence were higher in the northern and central-eastern regions of Tanzania than the rest of the regions in the country. Soil type and precipitation of the wettest quarter contributed equally to habitat suitability (32.4% each), followed by livestock density (25.9%) and rainfall pattern (9.3%). Ground-truthing of model outputs revealed that the odds of an animal being seropositive for RVFV when sampled from areas predicted to be most suitable for RVF occurrence were twice the odds of an animal sampled from areas least suitable for RVF occurrence (95% CI: 1.43, 2.76, p Tanzania were more suitable for RVF occurrence than the rest of the regions in the country. The modelled suitable habitat is characterised by impermeable soils, moderate precipitation in the wettest quarter, high livestock density and a bimodal rainfall pattern. The findings of this study should provide guidance for the design of appropriate RVF surveillance, prevention and control strategies which target areas with these characteristics.

  15. A comparative framework to infer landscape effects on population genetic structure: Are habitat suitability models effective in explaining gene flow?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maria C. Mateo-Sanchez; Niko Balkenhol; Samuel Cushman; Trinidad Perez; Ana Dominguez; Santiago Saura

    2015-01-01

    Most current methods to assess connectivity begin with landscape resistance maps. The prevailing resistance models are commonly based on expert opinion and, more recently, on a direct transformation of habitat suitability. However, habitat associations are not necessarily accurate indicators of dispersal, and thus may fail as a surrogate of resistance to...

  16. Distribution and habitat suitability index model for the Andean catfish Astroblepus ubidiai (Pisces: Siluriformes in Ecuador

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luis A Vélez-Espino

    2006-06-01

    Full Text Available In conservation biology there is a basic need to determine habitat suitability and availability. Astroblepus ubidiai (Siluriforms, the only native fish in the highlands of Imbabura province in the Ecuadorian Andes, was abundant in the past in the Imbakucha watershed and adjacent drainages, but currently it is restricted to a few isolated refuges. Conservation actions are needed if this unique fish is to persist. A Habitat Suitability Index (HSI for the species has been developed in order to aid management decisions. In this HIS model biomass density (B was selected as a better indicator of habitat quality than either abundance or density. A population well-being index (PI was constructed with the combination of B and an indicator of fish health (proportion of fish in the population with parasites and deformities. Based in other models of benthic fish the habitat variables current velocity, flow, depth, width, cover, invertebrate composition, vegetation type, terrestrial vegetation, land use, substrate, temperature, pH, TDS, oxygen, altitude, and slope were included in the analysis. An anthropogenic perturbation index (H and a fragment isolation index (FII were developed and included as habitat variables as well. The HSI model was applied to refuges and a sample of 15 aquatic bodies without fish populations within the study region. From the sampled sites without A. ubidiai 26.6% presented low quality, and the remaining 73.3% had medium quality according to the HSI estimated. Good quality habitat for dispersal, escape or translocations is rare in the region. The low HSIs estimated in some of the refuges suggests that current populations are not settled in the most favorable habitat but in the habitat least favorable to the agents of decline. Rev. Biol. Trop. 54(2: 623-638. Epub 2006 Jun 01.Astroblepus ubidiai (Siluriformes, el único pez nativo de las alturas de Imbabura, en los Andes Ecuatorianos, era un recurso abundante en el pasado

  17. Assessment of brown trout habitat suitability in the Jucar River Basin (SPAIN): comparison of data-driven approaches with fuzzy-logic models and univariate suitability curves.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muñoz-Mas, Rafael; Martínez-Capel, Francisco; Schneider, Matthias; Mouton, Ans M

    2012-12-01

    The implementation of the Water Framework Directive implies the determination of an environmental flow (E-flow) in each running water body. In Spain, many of the minimum flow assessments were determined with the physical habitat simulation system based on univariate habitat suitability curves. Multivariate habitat suitability models, widely applied in habitat assessment, are potentially more accurate than univariate suitability models. This article analyses the microhabitat selection by medium-sized (10-20 cm) brown trout (Salmo trutta fario) in three streams of the Jucar River Basin District (eastern Iberian Peninsula). The data were collected with an equal effort sampling approach. Univariate habitat suitability curves were built with a data-driven process for depth, mean velocity and substrate classes; three types of data-driven fuzzy models were generated with the FISH software: two models of presence-absence and a model of abundance. FISH applies a hill-climbing algorithm to optimize the fuzzy rules. A hydraulic model was calibrated with the tool River-2D in a segment of the Cabriel River (Jucar River Basin). The fuzzy-logic models and three methods to produce a suitability index from the three univariate curves were applied to evaluate the river habitat in the tool CASiMiR©. The comparison of results was based on the spatial arrangement of habitat suitability and the curves of weighted usable area versus discharge. The differences were relevant in different aspects, e.g. in the estimated minimum environmental flow according to the Spanish legal norm for hydrological planning. This work demonstrates the impact of the model's selection on the habitat suitability modelling and the assessment of environmental flows, based on an objective data-driven procedure; the conclusions are important for the water management in the Jucar River Basin and other river systems in Europe, where the environmental flows are a keystone for the achievement of the goals established

  18. Linking population viability, habitat suitability, and landscape simulation models for conservation planning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michael A. Larson; Frank R., III Thompson; Joshua J. Millspaugh; William D. Dijak; Stephen R. Shifley

    2004-01-01

    Methods for habitat modeling based on landscape simulations and population viability modeling based on habitat quality are well developed, but no published study of which we are aware has effectively joined them in a single, comprehensive analysis. We demonstrate the application of a population viability model for ovenbirds (Seiurus aurocapillus)...

  19. Modeling habitat suitability of the invasive clam Corbicula fluminea in a Neotropical shallow lagoon, southern Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silveira, T C L; Gama, A M S; Alves, T P; Fontoura, N F

    2016-04-19

    This study aimed to model the habitat suitability for an invasive clam Corbicula fluminea in a coastal shallow lagoon in the southern Neotropical region (-30.22, -50.55). The lagoon (19km2, maximum deep 2.5m) was sampled with an Ekman dredge in an orthogonal matrix comprising 84 points. At each sampling point, were obtained environmental descriptors as depth, organic matter content (OMC), average granulometry (Avgran), and the percentage of sand (Pcsand). Prediction performance of Generalized Linear Models (GLM), Generalized Additive Models (GAM) and Boosted Regression Tree (BRT) were compared. Also, niche overlapping with other native clam species (Castalia martensi, Neocorbicula limosa and Anodontites trapesialis) was examined. A BRT model with 1400 trees was selected as the best model, with cross-validated correlation of 0.82. The relative contributions of predictors were Pcsand-42.6%, OMC-35.8%, Avgran-10.9% and Depth-10.8%. Were identified that C. fluminea occur mainly in sandy sediments with few organic matter, in shallow areas nor by the shore. The PCA showed a wide niche overlap with the native clam species C. martensi, N. limosa and A. trapesialis.

  20. Modeling habitat suitability of the invasive clam Corbicula fluminea in a Neotropical shallow lagoon, southern Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. C. L. Silveira

    Full Text Available Abstract This study aimed to model the habitat suitability for an invasive clam Corbicula fluminea in a coastal shallow lagoon in the southern Neotropical region (–30.22, –50.55. The lagoon (19km2, maximum deep 2.5m was sampled with an Ekman dredge in an orthogonal matrix comprising 84 points. At each sampling point, were obtained environmental descriptors as depth, organic matter content (OMC, average granulometry (Avgran, and the percentage of sand (Pcsand. Prediction performance of Generalized Linear Models (GLM, Generalized Additive Models (GAM and Boosted Regression Tree (BRT were compared. Also, niche overlapping with other native clam species (Castalia martensi, Neocorbicula limosa and Anodontites trapesialis was examined. A BRT model with 1400 trees was selected as the best model, with cross-validated correlation of 0.82. The relative contributions of predictors were Pcsand-42.6%, OMC-35.8%, Avgran-10.9% and Depth-10.8%. Were identified that C. fluminea occur mainly in sandy sediments with few organic matter, in shallow areas nor by the shore. The PCA showed a wide niche overlap with the native clam species C. martensi, N. limosa and A. trapesialis.

  1. A resource-based modelling framework to assess habitat suitability for steppe birds in semiarid Mediterranean agricultural systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cardador, Laura; De Cáceres, Miquel; Bota, Gerard; Giralt, David; Casas, Fabián; Arroyo, Beatriz; Mougeot, François; Cantero-Martínez, Carlos; Moncunill, Judit; Butler, Simon J; Brotons, Lluís

    2014-01-01

    European agriculture is undergoing widespread changes that are likely to have profound impacts on farmland biodiversity. The development of tools that allow an assessment of the potential biodiversity effects of different land-use alternatives before changes occur is fundamental to guiding management decisions. In this study, we develop a resource-based model framework to estimate habitat suitability for target species, according to simple information on species' key resource requirements (diet, foraging habitat and nesting site), and examine whether it can be used to link land-use and local species' distribution. We take as a study case four steppe bird species in a lowland area of the north-eastern Iberian Peninsula. We also compare the performance of our resource-based approach to that obtained through habitat-based models relating species' occurrence and land-cover variables. Further, we use our resource-based approach to predict the effects that change in farming systems can have on farmland bird habitat suitability and compare these predictions with those obtained using the habitat-based models. Habitat suitability estimates generated by our resource-based models performed similarly (and better for one study species) than habitat based-models when predicting current species distribution. Moderate prediction success was achieved for three out of four species considered by resource-based models and for two of four by habitat-based models. Although, there is potential for improving the performance of resource-based models, they provide a structure for using available knowledge of the functional links between agricultural practices, provision of key resources and the response of organisms to predict potential effects of changing land-uses in a variety of context or the impacts of changes such as altered management practices that are not easily incorporated into habitat-based models.

  2. A resource-based modelling framework to assess habitat suitability for steppe birds in semiarid Mediterranean agricultural systems.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Cardador

    Full Text Available European agriculture is undergoing widespread changes that are likely to have profound impacts on farmland biodiversity. The development of tools that allow an assessment of the potential biodiversity effects of different land-use alternatives before changes occur is fundamental to guiding management decisions. In this study, we develop a resource-based model framework to estimate habitat suitability for target species, according to simple information on species' key resource requirements (diet, foraging habitat and nesting site, and examine whether it can be used to link land-use and local species' distribution. We take as a study case four steppe bird species in a lowland area of the north-eastern Iberian Peninsula. We also compare the performance of our resource-based approach to that obtained through habitat-based models relating species' occurrence and land-cover variables. Further, we use our resource-based approach to predict the effects that change in farming systems can have on farmland bird habitat suitability and compare these predictions with those obtained using the habitat-based models. Habitat suitability estimates generated by our resource-based models performed similarly (and better for one study species than habitat based-models when predicting current species distribution. Moderate prediction success was achieved for three out of four species considered by resource-based models and for two of four by habitat-based models. Although, there is potential for improving the performance of resource-based models, they provide a structure for using available knowledge of the functional links between agricultural practices, provision of key resources and the response of organisms to predict potential effects of changing land-uses in a variety of context or the impacts of changes such as altered management practices that are not easily incorporated into habitat-based models.

  3. Predicting spatial and temporal distribution of Indo-Pacific lionfish (Pterois volitans) in Biscayne Bay through habitat suitability modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bernal, Nicholas A.; DeAngelis, Donald L.; Schofield, Pamela J.; Sullivan Sealey, Kathleen

    2014-01-01

    Invasive species may exhibit higher levels of growth and reproduction when environmental conditions are most suitable, and thus their effects on native fauna may be intensified. Understanding potential impacts of these species, especially in the nascent stages of a biological invasion, requires critical information concerning spatial and temporal distributions of habitat suitability. Using empirically supported environmental variables (e.g., temperature, salinity, dissolved oxygen, rugosity, and benthic substrate), our models predicted habitat suitability for the invasive lionfish (Pterois volitans) in Biscayne Bay, Florida. The use of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) as a platform for the modeling process allowed us to quantify correlations between temporal (seasonal) fluctuations in the above variables and the spatial distribution of five discrete habitat quality classes, whose ranges are supported by statistical deviations from the apparent best conditions described in prior studies. Analysis of the resulting models revealed little fluctuation in spatial extent of the five habitat classes on a monthly basis. Class 5, which represented the area with environmental variables closest to the best conditions for lionfish, occupied approximately one-third of Biscayne Bay, with subsequent habitats declining in area. A key finding from this study was that habitat suitability increased eastward from the coastline, where higher quality habitats were adjacent to the Atlantic Ocean and displayed marine levels of ambient water quality. Corroboration of the models with sightings from the USGS-NAS database appeared to support our findings by nesting 79 % of values within habitat class 5; however, field testing (i.e., lionfish surveys) is necessary to confirm the relationship between habitat classes and lionfish distribution.

  4. Predictive mechanistic bioenergetics to model habitat suitability of shellfish culture in coastal lakes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rinaldi, A.; Montalto, V.; Manganaro, A.; Mazzola, A.; Mirto, S.; Sanfilippo, M.; Sarà, G.

    2014-05-01

    Quantitative tools based on mechanistic modelling of functional traits able to enhance the sustainability of aquaculture and most other human activities (i.e. reducing the likelihood of detrimental impacts optimising productions), are especially important factors in the decision to site aquaculture facilities in coastal lakes, ponds and lagoons and, in the case of detrimental impact, to adopt mitigation measures. We tested the ability of mechanistic functional trait based models to predict life history traits of cultivable shellfish in shallow coastal lakes. Dynamic Energy Budget (DEB) models were run to generate spatially explicit predictions of Mytilus galloprovincialis life history (LH) traits (e.g. body size and fecundity). Using fortnightly data of food supply and hourly data of body temperatures, and exploiting the power of mechanistic rules, we estimated the amount of faeces ejected by a fixed quantity of organisms cultivated in two shallow Southern Mediterranean (Sicily) lakes. These differed in terms of temperature and food density, implying large differences in life history traits of mussels in the two study areas. This information could help facilitate the selection of sites where environmental conditions are more suitable for aquaculture and contextually compatible with sustainability. The validation exercise obtained by comparing the predicted and observed data was nearly consistent. Therefore, a mechanistic functional traits-based model seems able to capture the link between habitat characteristics and functional traits of organisms, delineating the fundamental portion of an ecological niche, the possibility of predicting LH traits and potential ecological applications in the management of natural coastal resources.

  5. An iterative and targeted sampling design informed by habitat suitability models for detecting focal plant species over extensive areas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Ophelia; Zachmann, Luke J; Sesnie, Steven E; Olsson, Aaryn D; Dickson, Brett G

    2014-01-01

    Prioritizing areas for management of non-native invasive plants is critical, as invasive plants can negatively impact plant community structure. Extensive and multi-jurisdictional inventories are essential to prioritize actions aimed at mitigating the impact of invasions and changes in disturbance regimes. However, previous work devoted little effort to devising sampling methods sufficient to assess the scope of multi-jurisdictional invasion over extensive areas. Here we describe a large-scale sampling design that used species occurrence data, habitat suitability models, and iterative and targeted sampling efforts to sample five species and satisfy two key management objectives: 1) detecting non-native invasive plants across previously unsampled gradients, and 2) characterizing the distribution of non-native invasive plants at landscape to regional scales. Habitat suitability models of five species were based on occurrence records and predictor variables derived from topography, precipitation, and remotely sensed data. We stratified and established field sampling locations according to predicted habitat suitability and phenological, substrate, and logistical constraints. Across previously unvisited areas, we detected at least one of our focal species on 77% of plots. In turn, we used detections from 2011 to improve habitat suitability models and sampling efforts in 2012, as well as additional spatial constraints to increase detections. These modifications resulted in a 96% detection rate at plots. The range of habitat suitability values that identified highly and less suitable habitats and their environmental conditions corresponded to field detections with mixed levels of agreement. Our study demonstrated that an iterative and targeted sampling framework can address sampling bias, reduce time costs, and increase detections. Other studies can extend the sampling framework to develop methods in other ecosystems to provide detection data. The sampling methods

  6. An iterative and targeted sampling design informed by habitat suitability models for detecting focal plant species over extensive areas.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ophelia Wang

    Full Text Available Prioritizing areas for management of non-native invasive plants is critical, as invasive plants can negatively impact plant community structure. Extensive and multi-jurisdictional inventories are essential to prioritize actions aimed at mitigating the impact of invasions and changes in disturbance regimes. However, previous work devoted little effort to devising sampling methods sufficient to assess the scope of multi-jurisdictional invasion over extensive areas. Here we describe a large-scale sampling design that used species occurrence data, habitat suitability models, and iterative and targeted sampling efforts to sample five species and satisfy two key management objectives: 1 detecting non-native invasive plants across previously unsampled gradients, and 2 characterizing the distribution of non-native invasive plants at landscape to regional scales. Habitat suitability models of five species were based on occurrence records and predictor variables derived from topography, precipitation, and remotely sensed data. We stratified and established field sampling locations according to predicted habitat suitability and phenological, substrate, and logistical constraints. Across previously unvisited areas, we detected at least one of our focal species on 77% of plots. In turn, we used detections from 2011 to improve habitat suitability models and sampling efforts in 2012, as well as additional spatial constraints to increase detections. These modifications resulted in a 96% detection rate at plots. The range of habitat suitability values that identified highly and less suitable habitats and their environmental conditions corresponded to field detections with mixed levels of agreement. Our study demonstrated that an iterative and targeted sampling framework can address sampling bias, reduce time costs, and increase detections. Other studies can extend the sampling framework to develop methods in other ecosystems to provide detection data. The

  7. Development of landscape-level habitat suitability models for ten wildlife species in the central hardwoods region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chadwick D. Rittenhouse; William D. Dijak; Frank R. III Thompson; Joshua J. Millspaugh

    2007-01-01

    Reports landscape-level habitat suitability models for 10 species in the Central Hardwoods Region of the Midwestern United States: American woodcock, cerulean warbler, Henslow's sparrow, Indiana bat, northern bobwhite, ruffed grouse, timber rattlesnake, wood thrush, worm-eating warbler, and yellow-breasted chat. All models included spatially explicit variables and...

  8. Environmental variables and definitive host distribution: a habitat suitability modelling for endohelminth parasites in the marine realm

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuhn, Thomas; Cunze, Sarah; Kochmann, Judith; Klimpel, Sven

    2016-08-01

    Marine nematodes of the genus Anisakis are common parasites of a wide range of aquatic organisms. Public interest is primarily based on their importance as zoonotic agents of the human Anisakiasis, a severe infection of the gastro-intestinal tract as result of consuming live larvae in insufficiently cooked fish dishes. The diverse nature of external impacts unequally influencing larval and adult stages of marine endohelminth parasites requires the consideration of both abiotic and biotic factors. Whereas abiotic factors are generally more relevant for early life stages and might also be linked to intermediate hosts, definitive hosts are indispensable for a parasite’s reproduction. In order to better understand the uneven occurrence of parasites in fish species, we here use the maximum entropy approach (Maxent) to model the habitat suitability for nine Anisakis species accounting for abiotic parameters as well as biotic data (definitive hosts). The modelled habitat suitability reflects the observed distribution quite well for all Anisakis species, however, in some cases, habitat suitability exceeded the known geographical distribution, suggesting a wider distribution than presently recorded. We suggest that integrative modelling combining abiotic and biotic parameters is a valid approach for habitat suitability assessments of Anisakis, and potentially other marine parasite species.

  9. Satellite imagery as a single source of predictor variables for habitat suitability modelling: how Landsat can inform the conservation of a critically endangered lemur

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    José J. Lahoz-Monfort; Gurutzeta Guillera-Arroita; E. J. Milner-Gulland; Richard P. Young; Emily Nicholson

    2010-01-01

    1. Statistical modelling of habitat suitability is an important tool for planning conservation interventions, particularly for areas where species distribution data are expensive or hard to collect...

  10. Using Risk Assessment and Habitat Suitability Models to Prioritise Invasive Species for Management in a Changing Climate.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shauna-Lee Chai

    Full Text Available Accounting for climate change in invasive species risk assessments improves our understanding of potential future impacts and enhances our preparedness for the arrival of new non-native species. We combined traditional risk assessment for invasive species with habitat suitability modeling to assess risk to biodiversity based on climate change. We demonstrate our method by assessing the risk for 15 potentially new invasive plant species to Alberta, Canada, an area where climate change is expected to facilitate the poleward expansion of invasive species ranges. Of the 15 species assessed, the three terrestrial invasive plant species that could pose the greatest threat to Alberta's biodiversity are giant knotweed (Fallopia sachalinensis, tamarisk (Tamarix chinensis, and alkali swainsonpea (Sphaerophysa salsula. We characterise giant knotweed as 'extremely invasive', with 21 times the suitable habitat between baseline and future projected climate. Tamarisk is 'extremely invasive' with a 64% increase in suitable habitat, and alkali swainsonpea is 'highly invasive' with a 21% increase in suitable habitat. Our methodology can be used to predict and prioritise potentially new invasive species for their impact on biodiversity in the context of climate change.

  11. Using Risk Assessment and Habitat Suitability Models to Prioritise Invasive Species for Management in a Changing Climate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chai, Shauna-Lee; Zhang, Jian; Nixon, Amy; Nielsen, Scott

    2016-01-01

    Accounting for climate change in invasive species risk assessments improves our understanding of potential future impacts and enhances our preparedness for the arrival of new non-native species. We combined traditional risk assessment for invasive species with habitat suitability modeling to assess risk to biodiversity based on climate change. We demonstrate our method by assessing the risk for 15 potentially new invasive plant species to Alberta, Canada, an area where climate change is expected to facilitate the poleward expansion of invasive species ranges. Of the 15 species assessed, the three terrestrial invasive plant species that could pose the greatest threat to Alberta's biodiversity are giant knotweed (Fallopia sachalinensis), tamarisk (Tamarix chinensis), and alkali swainsonpea (Sphaerophysa salsula). We characterise giant knotweed as 'extremely invasive', with 21 times the suitable habitat between baseline and future projected climate. Tamarisk is 'extremely invasive' with a 64% increase in suitable habitat, and alkali swainsonpea is 'highly invasive' with a 21% increase in suitable habitat. Our methodology can be used to predict and prioritise potentially new invasive species for their impact on biodiversity in the context of climate change.

  12. Habitat suitability criteria via parametric distributions: estimation, model selection and uncertainty

    Science.gov (United States)

    Som, Nicholas A.; Goodman, Damon H.; Perry, Russell W.; Hardy, Thomas B.

    2016-01-01

    Previous methods for constructing univariate habitat suitability criteria (HSC) curves have ranged from professional judgement to kernel-smoothed density functions or combinations thereof. We present a new method of generating HSC curves that applies probability density functions as the mathematical representation of the curves. Compared with previous approaches, benefits of our method include (1) estimation of probability density function parameters directly from raw data, (2) quantitative methods for selecting among several candidate probability density functions, and (3) concise methods for expressing estimation uncertainty in the HSC curves. We demonstrate our method with a thorough example using data collected on the depth of water used by juvenile Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tschawytscha) in the Klamath River of northern California and southern Oregon. All R code needed to implement our example is provided in the appendix. Published 2015. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.

  13. Habitat suitability models of mountain ungulates: identifying potential areas for conservation

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Paudel, Prakash K.; Hais, M.; Kindlmann, Pavel

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 54, apr (2015), s. 37 ISSN 1021-5506 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) LO1415; GA MŠk LC06073; GA ČR GB14-36098G Institutional support: RVO:67179843 Keywords : capricornis thar * habitat model * Midhills * Muntiacus muntjak * Naemorhedus goral * Nepal Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 0.885, year: 2015

  14. A resource-based modelling framework to assess habitat suitability for steppe birds in semiarid Mediterranean agricultural systems

    OpenAIRE

    Laura Cardador; Miquel de Cáceres; Gerard Bota; David Giralt; Fabián Casas; Beatriz Arroyo; François Mougeot; Carlos Cantero-Martínez; Judit Moncunill; Simon J Butler; Lluís Brotons

    2014-01-01

    European agriculture is undergoing widespread changes that are likely to have profound impacts on farmland biodiversity. The development of tools that allow an assessment of the potential biodiversity effects of different land-use alternatives before changes occur is fundamental to guiding management decisions. In this study, we develop a resource-based model framework to estimate habitat suitability for target species, according to simple information on species’ key resource requirements (di...

  15. A Resource-Based Modelling Framework to Assess Habitat Suitability for Steppe Birds in Semiarid Mediterranean Agricultural Systems

    OpenAIRE

    Cardador Bergua, Laura; De Cáceres, Miquel; Bota, Gerard; Giralt, David; Casas, Fabian; Arroyo, Beatriz; Mougeot, F.; Cantero Martínez, Carlos; Moncunill Geniz, Judit; Simon J Butler; Brotons, Lluís

    2014-01-01

    European agriculture is undergoing widespread changes that are likely to have profound impacts on farmland biodiversity.The development of tools that allow an assessment of the potential biodiversity effects of different land-use alternatives before changes occur is fundamental to guiding management decisions. In this study, we develop a resource-based model framework to estimate habitat suitability for target species, according to simple information on species’ key resource requirements (die...

  16. Re?establishing the pecking order: Niche models reliably predict suitable habitats for the reintroduction of red?billed oxpeckers

    OpenAIRE

    Kalle, Riddhika; Combrink, Leigh; Ramesh, Tharmalingam; Downs, Colleen T.

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Distributions of avian mutualists are affected by changes in biotic interactions and environmental conditions driven directly/indirectly by human actions. The range contraction of red?billed oxpeckers (Buphagus erythrorhynchus) in South Africa is partly a result of the widespread use of acaracides (i.e., mainly cattle dips), toxic to both ticks and oxpeckers. We predicted the habitat suitability of red?billed oxpeckers in South Africa using ensemble models to assist the ongoing reint...

  17. Evaluation of habitat suitability index models by global sensitivity and uncertainty analyses: a case study for submerged aquatic vegetation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zajac, Zuzanna; Stith, Bradley M.; Bowling, Andrea C.; Langtimm, Catherine A.; Swain, Eric D.

    2015-01-01

    Habitat suitability index (HSI) models are commonly used to predict habitat quality and species distributions and are used to develop biological surveys, assess reserve and management priorities, and anticipate possible change under different management or climate change scenarios. Important management decisions may be based on model results, often without a clear understanding of the level of uncertainty associated with model outputs. We present an integrated methodology to assess the propagation of uncertainty from both inputs and structure of the HSI models on model outputs (uncertainty analysis: UA) and relative importance of uncertain model inputs and their interactions on the model output uncertainty (global sensitivity analysis: GSA). We illustrate the GSA/UA framework using simulated hydrology input data from a hydrodynamic model representing sea level changes and HSI models for two species of submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV) in southwest Everglades National Park: Vallisneria americana (tape grass) and Halodule wrightii (shoal grass). We found considerable spatial variation in uncertainty for both species, but distributions of HSI scores still allowed discrimination of sites with good versus poor conditions. Ranking of input parameter sensitivities also varied spatially for both species, with high habitat quality sites showing higher sensitivity to different parameters than low-quality sites. HSI models may be especially useful when species distribution data are unavailable, providing means of exploiting widely available environmental datasets to model past, current, and future habitat conditions. The GSA/UA approach provides a general method for better understanding HSI model dynamics, the spatial and temporal variation in uncertainties, and the parameters that contribute most to model uncertainty. Including an uncertainty and sensitivity analysis in modeling efforts as part of the decision-making framework will result in better-informed, more robust

  18. Prospects for population expansion of the exotic aoudad (Ammotragus lervia; Bovidae) in the Iberian Peninsula: clues from habitat suitability modelling

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cassinello, Jorge; Acevedo, Pelayo; Hortal, Joaquín

    2006-01-01

    ) environmental variables (climate and habitat type), and (2) potential aoudad landscape avoidance and human disturbance variables. We compared both niche descriptions to study the impact of human interference on niche selection of the species. ENFA models were calibrated using data on the population expanded...... from the original release location, in Sierra Espuña mountains, and validated using data from another free-ranging population, originated independently in the Alicante province. The habitat suitability model for the purely environmental niche predicts a potential distribution along a SW-NE axis...... for the species. Since the aoudad is a potential competitor of native ungulates and a threat to endemic flora, prospects for its potential dispersion might be of great conservation value....

  19. Modelization of the Current and Future Habitat Suitability of Rhododendron ferrugineum Using Potential Snow Accumulation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin Komac

    Full Text Available Mountain areas are particularly sensitive to climate change. Species distribution models predict important extinctions in these areas whose magnitude will depend on a number of different factors. Here we examine the possible impact of climate change on the Rhododendron ferrugineum (alpenrose niche in Andorra (Pyrenees. This species currently occupies 14.6 km2 of this country and relies on the protection afforded by snow cover in winter. We used high-resolution climatic data, potential snow accumulation and a combined forecasting method to obtain the realized niche model of this species. Subsequently, we used data from the high-resolution Scampei project climate change projection for the A2, A1B and B1 scenarios to model its future realized niche model. The modelization performed well when predicting the species's distribution, which improved when we considered the potential snow accumulation, the most important variable influencing its distribution. We thus obtained a potential extent of about 70.7 km(2 or 15.1% of the country. We observed an elevation lag distribution between the current and potential distribution of the species, probably due to its slow colonization rate and the small-scale survey of seedlings. Under the three climatic scenarios, the realized niche model of the species will be reduced by 37.9-70.1 km(2 by the end of the century and it will become confined to what are today screes and rocky hillside habitats. The particular effects of climate change on seedling establishment, as well as on the species' plasticity and sensitivity in the event of a reduction of the snow cover, could worsen these predictions.

  20. Modelization of the Current and Future Habitat Suitability of Rhododendron ferrugineum Using Potential Snow Accumulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Komac, Benjamin; Esteban, Pere; Trapero, Laura; Caritg, Roger

    2016-01-01

    Mountain areas are particularly sensitive to climate change. Species distribution models predict important extinctions in these areas whose magnitude will depend on a number of different factors. Here we examine the possible impact of climate change on the Rhododendron ferrugineum (alpenrose) niche in Andorra (Pyrenees). This species currently occupies 14.6 km2 of this country and relies on the protection afforded by snow cover in winter. We used high-resolution climatic data, potential snow accumulation and a combined forecasting method to obtain the realized niche model of this species. Subsequently, we used data from the high-resolution Scampei project climate change projection for the A2, A1B and B1 scenarios to model its future realized niche model. The modelization performed well when predicting the species's distribution, which improved when we considered the potential snow accumulation, the most important variable influencing its distribution. We thus obtained a potential extent of about 70.7 km(2) or 15.1% of the country. We observed an elevation lag distribution between the current and potential distribution of the species, probably due to its slow colonization rate and the small-scale survey of seedlings. Under the three climatic scenarios, the realized niche model of the species will be reduced by 37.9-70.1 km(2) by the end of the century and it will become confined to what are today screes and rocky hillside habitats. The particular effects of climate change on seedling establishment, as well as on the species' plasticity and sensitivity in the event of a reduction of the snow cover, could worsen these predictions.

  1. Model output for deep-sea coral habitat suitability in the U.S. North and Mid-Atlantic from 2013 (NCEI Accession 0145923)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This dataset was created for potential use as an environmental predictor in spatial predictive models of deep-sea coral habitat suitability. Deep-sea corals are of...

  2. Habitat suitability modeling of amphibian species in southern and central China: environmental correlates and potential richness mapping.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Youhua

    2013-05-01

    Successful wildlife management must take into account suitable habitat areas. Information on the correlation between distribution ranges and environmental conditions would, therefore, improve the efficacy of in-situ conservation of wildlife. In this contribution, correlations between environmental factors and the distribution of 51 amphibians in southern and central China were investigated. Ecological niche factor analysis (ENFA) at a spatial resolution of 1° latitude×1° longitude identified a mixture of climatic and habitat factors as important predictors of the occurrence of individual species. The aims of the present work were (i) to evaluate potential distributions of amphibians based on the suitability of areas; (ii) to identify the major environmental descriptors upon which they depend; and (iii) to identify areas of potential high richness that have been overlooked in available inventories. Most of the predicted species ranges of species covered the majority of southern and central China. Six richness hotspots were predicted, of which four have been described previously, but two overlooked (SE Fujian and SE Qinghai). The prediction model was considered to be relatively accurate and it is recommended that these two new potential hotspots should be subjected to further evaluation and sampling efforts. Amphibians have high ecological preference for high humidity and precipitation, and low annual frost days. ENFA is a useful tool in wildlife conservation assessment because it is able to identify potential hotspots where studies on the correlations between environmental descriptors and the occurrence of particular species could be focused.

  3. Spatial multi-criteria decision analysis for modelling suitable habitats of Ornithodoros soft ticks in the Western Palearctic region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vial, L; Ducheyne, E; Filatov, S; Gerilovych, A; McVey, D S; Sindryakova, I; Morgunov, S; Pérez de León, A A; Kolbasov, D; De Clercq, E M

    2018-01-15

    Ticks are economically and medically important ectoparasites due to the injuries inflicted through their bite, and their ability to transmit pathogens to humans, livestock, and wildlife. Whereas hard ticks have been intensively studied, little is known about soft ticks, even though they can also transmit pathogens, including African Swine Fever Virus (ASFV) affecting domestic and wild suids or Borrelia bacteria causing tick-borne relapsing fever (TBRF) in humans. We thus developed a regional model to identify suitable spatial areas for a community of nine Ornithodoros tick species (O. erraticus, O. sonrai, O. alactagalis, O. nereensis, O. tholozani, O. papillipes, O. tartakovskyi, O. asperus, O. verrucosus), which may be of medical and veterinary importance in the Western Palearctic region. Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis was used due to the relative scarcity of high-quality occurrence data. After an in-depth literature review on the ecological requirements of the selected tick community, five climate-related factors appeared critical for feeding activity and tick development: (i) a spring temperature exceeding 10°C to induce the end of winter soft tick quiescent period, (ii) a three-months summer temperature above 20°C to allow tick physiological activities, (iii) annual precipitation ranging from 60mm to 750mm and, in very arid areas, (iv) dry seasons interrupted by small rain showers to maintain minimum moisture inside their habitat along the year or (v) residual water provided by perennial rivers near habitats. We deliberately chose not to include biological factors such as host availability or vegetation patterns. A sensitivity analysis was done by performing multiple runs of the model altering the environmental variables, their suitability function, and their attributed weights. To validate the models, we used 355 occurrence data points, complemented by random points within sampled ecoregions. All models indicated suitable areas in the Mediterranean Basin

  4. Distribution of the Habitat Suitability of the Main Malaria Vector in French Guiana Using Maximum Entropy Modeling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moua, Yi; Roux, Emmanuel; Girod, Romain; Dusfour, Isabelle; de Thoisy, Benoit; Seyler, Frédérique; Briolant, Sébastien

    2017-05-01

    Malaria is an important health issue in French Guiana. Its principal mosquito vector in this region is Anopheles darlingi Root. Knowledge of the spatial distribution of this species is still very incomplete due to the extent of French Guiana and the difficulty to access most of the territory. Species distribution modeling based on the maximal entropy procedure was used to predict the spatial distribution of An. darlingi using 39 presence sites. The resulting model provided significantly high prediction performances (mean 10-fold cross-validated partial area under the curve and continuous Boyce index equal to, respectively, 1.11-with a level of omission error of 20%-and 0.42). The model also provided a habitat suitability map and environmental response curves in accordance with the known entomological situation. Several environmental characteristics that had a positive correlation with the presence of An. darlingi were highlighted: nonpermanent anthropogenic changes of the natural environment, the presence of roads and tracks, and opening of the forest. Some geomorphological landforms and high altitude landscapes appear to be unsuitable for An. darlingi. The species distribution modeling was able to reliably predict the distribution of suitable habitats for An. darlingi in French Guiana. Results allowed completion of the knowledge of the spatial distribution of the principal malaria vector in this Amazonian region, and identification of the main factors that favor its presence. They should contribute to the definition of a necessary targeted vector control strategy in a malaria pre-elimination stage, and allow extrapolation of the acquired knowledge to other Amazonian or malaria-endemic contexts. © The Authors 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  5. Using environmental niche modeling to find suitable habitats for the Hard-ground Barasingha in Madhya Pradesh, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. P. Singh

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available The subspecies of Swamp Deer, the Hard-ground Barasingha (Rucervus duvaucelii branderi Pocock, is presently found only in Kanha Tiger Reserve (KTR in Madhya Pradesh, India. This subspecies is highly vulnerable to extinction, and reintroduction in suitable sites is the need of the hour.  Environmental niche models (GARP, SVM, ED, CSM aimed at providing a detailed prediction of species distribution by relating presence of species to 19 bioclimatic indices were developed, using swamp deer occurrence records in KTR. The predictions were appropriately weighted with the prevailing LU/LC classes to identify suitable habitats in Madhya Pradesh, India. The result shows that the southern region of Madhya Pradesh is suitable for the sustenance of Barasingha with varying degrees of habitability. Vicarious validation shows that most of these forest areas were the same as that of historical records dating back to 50 years. However, land use maps can help identify areas where this subspecies can be reintroduced. 

  6. Habitat Suitability Modeling of Bornean Orangutan (Pongo pygmaeus pygmaeus in Betung Kerihun National Park, Danau Sentarum and Corridor, West Kalimantan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hari Prayogo

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Conservation areas such as national parks became the last safe area for biodiversity in Indonesia, especially for orangutan, because they have permanent status, and other forest areas may change at any time. Currently, there have been tremendous numbers of land use changes in orangutan habitats such as the development of roads, large scale plantations, settlements, farming as well as logging. However, the available national parks still offer secure places for orangutans. This research was conducted to study the impact of spatial land use policy on the habitat distribution of orangutans. A remote sensing technology was used to study the habitat distribution and suitability of orangutan in Betung Kerihun National Park (BKNP, Danau Sentarum National Park (DSNP and a corridor which connects these 2 parks. Seven parameters have been observed to characterize the habitat of orangutans. Habitat suitability levels of three research sites i.e. BKNP, corridor, and DSNP were 53.72%, 42.94%, and 3.34% which is considered as high, moderate, and low level of habitat suitability, respectively. These results were obtained with 93.63% of validation.

  7. Wildlife Habitats Suitability Modelling using Fuzzy Inference System: A Case Study of Persian Leopard (Panthera pardus saxicolor in Shimbar Protected Area

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Z. Obeidavi

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Several modelling techniques have been developed for habitat suitability modelling. In the meantime, the Fuzzy Inference System (FIS with ability to model uncertainty of input variables is an effective method to model wildlife species habitat suitability. So, Persian Leopard habitat suitability was predicted in Shimbar Protected Area using FIS. Therefore, the effective environmental variables were determined. We also defined and determined the linguistic variables, linguistic values, and range of them. Then, we designed the membership functions of the fuzzy sets of the input and output variables. Also, the definition of the fuzzy rules in the system was performed. Finally, the defuzzification of output was carried out. The accuracy of the predictive model was tested using AUC. Also, 11 FISs were developed to determine sensitivity of the models and important variables in modelling. The results showed that the predictive model was more efficient than the random model (AUC=0.960. In addition, the ‘distance to capra’ was the most important predictor. According to the success of FIS in Persian Leopard habitat suitability modelling, we suggest this method to improve and complete the existing spatial information of wildlife habitats in Iran, especially about regions and species that have been less studied.

  8. Spatial transferability of habitat suitability models of Nephrops norvegicus among fished areas in the Northeast Atlantic: sufficiently stable for marine resource conservation?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valentina Lauria

    Full Text Available Knowledge of the spatial distribution and habitat associations of species in relation to the environment is essential for their management and conservation. Habitat suitability models are useful in quantifying species-environment relationships and predicting species distribution patterns. Little is known, however, about the stability and performance of habitat suitability models when projected into new areas (spatial transferability and how this can inform resource management. The aims of this study were to model habitat suitability of Norway lobster (Nephrops norvegicus in five fished areas of the Northeast Atlantic (Aran ground, Irish Sea, Celtic Sea, Scotland Inshore and Fladen ground, and to test for spatial transferability of habitat models among multiple regions. Nephrops burrow density was modelled using generalised additive models (GAMs with predictors selected from four environmental variables (depth, slope, sediment and rugosity. Models were evaluated and tested for spatial transferability among areas. The optimum models (lowest AICc for different areas always included depth and sediment as predictors. Burrow densities were generally greater at depth and in finer sediments, but relationships for individual areas were sometimes more complex. Aside from an inclusion of depth and sediment, the optimum models differed between fished areas. When it came to tests of spatial transferability, however, most of the models were able to predict Nephrops density in other areas. Furthermore, transferability was not dependent on use of the optimum models since competing models were also able to achieve a similar level of transferability to new areas. A degree of decoupling between model 'fitting' performance and spatial transferability supports the use of simpler models when extrapolating habitat suitability maps to different areas. Differences in the form and performance of models from different areas may supply further information on the processes

  9. Effects of uncertain topographic input data on two-dimensional modeling of flow hydraulics, habitat suitability, and bed mobility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Legleiter, C. J.; McDonald, R.; Kyriakidis, P. C.; Nelson, J. M.

    2009-12-01

    spatial pattern of uncertainty in flow model predictions. Maps of ensemble means, standard deviations, and ranges indicated that the impact of topographic uncertainty on model outputs was strongly related to channel morphology, with the greatest variability in predicted velocities and stresses occurring over the point bar. To illustrate the potential effects of this type of uncertainty on various model applications, we used simulated topographic realizations to generate spatially explicit probability distributions of habitat suitability indices and mobile particle sizes. Our results implied that both types of analysis were highly sensitive to uncertain topographic input data. This study thus provided quantitative confirmation that accurate topographic information is an essential prerequisite to reliable flow modeling by highlighting the manner in which topographic uncertainty can propagate through a model to produce uncertain predictions of hydraulic attributes. Future work will use a similar approach to assess the extent to which biases in bed elevations inferred via remote sensing affect the flow model.

  10. Spring Season Habitat Suitability Index raster

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior — This raster represents a continuous surface of sage-grouse habitat suitability index (HSI, created using ArcGIS 10.2.2) values for Nevada during spring, which is a...

  11. Residence-linked human plague in New Mexico: a habitat-suitability model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eisen, Rebecca J; Reynolds, Pamela J; Ettestad, Paul; Brown, Ted; Enscore, Russell E; Biggerstaff, Brad J; Cheek, James; Bueno, Rudy; Targhetta, Joseph; Montenieri, John A; Gage, Kenneth L

    2007-07-01

    Yersinia pestis, the causative agent of plague, has been detected in fleas and mammals throughout the western United States. This highly virulent infection is rare in humans, surveillance of the disease is expensive, and it often was assumed that risk of exposure to Y. pestis is high in most of the western United States. For these reasons, some local health departments in these plague-affected regions have hesitated to undertake surveillance and other prevention activities. To aid in targeting limited public health resources, we created a fine-resolution human plague risk map for New Mexico, the state reporting more than half the human cases in the United States. Our GIS-based model included three landscape features-a nonlinear relationship with elevation, distance to water, and distance to the ecotone between Rocky Mountain/Great Basin open and closed coniferous woodlands-and yielded an overall accuracy of approximately 80%. The model classified 17.25% of the state as posing significant risk of exposure to humans on privately or tribally owned land, which suggests that resource requirements for regular surveillance and control of plague could be effectively focused on < 20% of the state.

  12. Modeling freshwater snail habitat suitability and areas of potential snail-borne disease transmission in Uganda

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Stensgaard, Anna-Sofie; Jørgensen, Aslak; Kabatereine, N B

    2006-01-01

    Geographic information system (GIS-based modeling of an intermediate host snail species environmental requirements using known occurrence records can provide estimates of its spatial distribution. When other data are lacking, this can be used as a rough spatial prediction of potential snail-borne...... disease transmission areas. Furthermore, knowledge of abiotic factors affecting intra-molluscan parasitic development can be used to make "masks" based on remotely sensed climatic data, and these can in turn be used to refine these predictions. We used data from a recent freshwater snail survey from...... species, indicating a large potential for disease transmission. The lack of parasitological data still makes it difficult to determine the magnitude of actual disease transmission, but the predicted snail distributions might be used as indicators of potential present and future risk areas. Some...

  13. Elk habitat suitability map for North Carolina

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, Steven G.; Cobb, David T.; Collazo, Jaime A.

    2015-01-01

    Although eastern elk (Cervus elaphus canadensis) were extirpated from the eastern United States in the 19th century, they were successfully reintroduced in the North Carolina portion of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in the early 2000s. The North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission (NCWRC) is evaluating the prospect of reintroducing the species in other locations in the state to augment recreational opportunities. As a first step in the process, we created a state-wide elk habitat suitability map. We used medium-scale data sets and a two-component approach to iden- tify areas of high biological value for elk and exclude from consideration areas where elk-human conflicts were more likely. Habitats in the state were categorized as 66% unsuitable, 16.7% low, 17% medium, and <1% high suitability for elk. The coastal plain and Piedmont contained the most suitable habitat, but prospective reintroduction sites were largely excluded from consideration due to extensive agricultural activities and pervasiveness of secondary roads. We ranked 31 areas (≥ 500 km2) based on their suitability for reintroduction. The central region of the state contained the top five ranked areas. The Blue Ridge Mountains, where the extant population of elk occurs, was ranked 21st. Our work provides a benchmark for decision makers to evaluate potential consequences and trade-offs associated with the selection of prospective elk reintroduction sites.

  14. Predicting future thermal habitat suitability of competing native and invasive fish species: from metabolic scope to oceanographic modelling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marras, Stefano; Cucco, Andrea; Antognarelli, Fabio; Azzurro, Ernesto; Milazzo, Marco; Bariche, Michel; Butenschön, Momme; Kay, Susan; Di Bitetto, Massimiliano; Quattrocchi, Giovanni; Sinerchia, Matteo; Domenici, Paolo

    2015-01-01

    Global increase in sea temperatures has been suggested to facilitate the incoming and spread of tropical invaders. The increasing success of these species may be related to their higher physiological performance compared with indigenous ones. Here, we determined the effect of temperature on the aerobic metabolic scope (MS) of two herbivorous fish species that occupy a similar ecological niche in the Mediterranean Sea: the native salema (Sarpa salpa) and the invasive marbled spinefoot (Siganus rivulatus). Our results demonstrate a large difference in the optimal temperature for aerobic scope between the salema (21.8°C) and the marbled spinefoot (29.1°C), highlighting the importance of temperature in determining the energy availability and, potentially, the distribution patterns of the two species. A modelling approach based on a present-day projection and a future scenario for oceanographic conditions was used to make predictions about the thermal habitat suitability (THS, an index based on the relationship between MS and temperature) of the two species, both at the basin level (the whole Mediterranean Sea) and at the regional level (the Sicilian Channel, a key area for the inflow of invasive species from the Eastern to the Western Mediterranean Sea). For the present-day projection, our basin-scale model shows higher THS of the marbled spinefoot than the salema in the Eastern compared with the Western Mediterranean Sea. However, by 2050, the THS of the marbled spinefoot is predicted to increase throughout the whole Mediterranean Sea, causing its westward expansion. Nevertheless, the regional-scale model suggests that the future thermal conditions of Western Sicily will remain relatively unsuitable for the invasive species and could act as a barrier for its spread westward. We suggest that metabolic scope can be used as a tool to evaluate the potential invasiveness of alien species and the resilience to global warming of native species.

  15. Assessment of fine-scale resource selection and spatially explicit habitat suitability modelling for a re-introduced tiger (Panthera tigris) population in central India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarkar, Mriganka Shekhar; Krishnamurthy, Ramesh; Johnson, Jeyaraj A; Sen, Subharanjan; Saha, Goutam Kumar

    2017-01-01

    Large carnivores influence ecosystem functions at various scales. Thus, their local extinction is not only a species-specific conservation concern, but also reflects on the overall habitat quality and ecosystem value. Species-habitat relationships at fine scale reflect the individuals' ability to procure resources and negotiate intraspecific competition. Such fine scale habitat choices are more pronounced in large carnivores such as tiger ( Panthera tigris ), which exhibits competitive exclusion in habitat and mate selection strategies. Although landscape level policies and conservation strategies are increasingly promoted for tiger conservation, specific management interventions require knowledge of the habitat correlates at fine scale. We studied nine radio-collared individuals of a successfully reintroduced tiger population in Panna Tiger Reserve, central India, focussing on the species-habitat relationship at fine scales. With 16 eco-geographical variables, we performed Manly's selection ratio and K-select analyses to define population-level and individual-level variation in resource selection, respectively. We analysed the data obtained during the exploratory period of six tigers and during the settled period of eight tigers separately, and compared the consequent results. We further used the settled period characteristics to model and map habitat suitability based on the Mahalanobis D 2 method and the Boyce index. There was a clear difference in habitat selection by tigers between the exploratory and the settled period. During the exploratory period, tigers selected dense canopy and bamboo forests, but also spent time near villages and relocated village sites. However, settled tigers predominantly selected bamboo forests in complex terrain, riverine forests and teak-mixed forest, and totally avoided human settlements and agriculture areas. There were individual variations in habitat selection between exploratory and settled periods. Based on threshold limits

  16. Assessment of fine-scale resource selection and spatially explicit habitat suitability modelling for a re-introduced tiger (Panthera tigris population in central India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mriganka Shekhar Sarkar

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Background Large carnivores influence ecosystem functions at various scales. Thus, their local extinction is not only a species-specific conservation concern, but also reflects on the overall habitat quality and ecosystem value. Species-habitat relationships at fine scale reflect the individuals’ ability to procure resources and negotiate intraspecific competition. Such fine scale habitat choices are more pronounced in large carnivores such as tiger (Panthera tigris, which exhibits competitive exclusion in habitat and mate selection strategies. Although landscape level policies and conservation strategies are increasingly promoted for tiger conservation, specific management interventions require knowledge of the habitat correlates at fine scale. Methods We studied nine radio-collared individuals of a successfully reintroduced tiger population in Panna Tiger Reserve, central India, focussing on the species-habitat relationship at fine scales. With 16 eco-geographical variables, we performed Manly’s selection ratio and K-select analyses to define population-level and individual-level variation in resource selection, respectively. We analysed the data obtained during the exploratory period of six tigers and during the settled period of eight tigers separately, and compared the consequent results. We further used the settled period characteristics to model and map habitat suitability based on the Mahalanobis D2 method and the Boyce index. Results There was a clear difference in habitat selection by tigers between the exploratory and the settled period. During the exploratory period, tigers selected dense canopy and bamboo forests, but also spent time near villages and relocated village sites. However, settled tigers predominantly selected bamboo forests in complex terrain, riverine forests and teak-mixed forest, and totally avoided human settlements and agriculture areas. There were individual variations in habitat selection between exploratory

  17. Assessment of fine-scale resource selection and spatially explicit habitat suitability modelling for a re-introduced tiger (Panthera tigris) population in central India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarkar, Mriganka Shekhar; Johnson, Jeyaraj A.; Sen, Subharanjan

    2017-01-01

    Background Large carnivores influence ecosystem functions at various scales. Thus, their local extinction is not only a species-specific conservation concern, but also reflects on the overall habitat quality and ecosystem value. Species-habitat relationships at fine scale reflect the individuals’ ability to procure resources and negotiate intraspecific competition. Such fine scale habitat choices are more pronounced in large carnivores such as tiger (Panthera tigris), which exhibits competitive exclusion in habitat and mate selection strategies. Although landscape level policies and conservation strategies are increasingly promoted for tiger conservation, specific management interventions require knowledge of the habitat correlates at fine scale. Methods We studied nine radio-collared individuals of a successfully reintroduced tiger population in Panna Tiger Reserve, central India, focussing on the species-habitat relationship at fine scales. With 16 eco-geographical variables, we performed Manly’s selection ratio and K-select analyses to define population-level and individual-level variation in resource selection, respectively. We analysed the data obtained during the exploratory period of six tigers and during the settled period of eight tigers separately, and compared the consequent results. We further used the settled period characteristics to model and map habitat suitability based on the Mahalanobis D2 method and the Boyce index. Results There was a clear difference in habitat selection by tigers between the exploratory and the settled period. During the exploratory period, tigers selected dense canopy and bamboo forests, but also spent time near villages and relocated village sites. However, settled tigers predominantly selected bamboo forests in complex terrain, riverine forests and teak-mixed forest, and totally avoided human settlements and agriculture areas. There were individual variations in habitat selection between exploratory and settled periods

  18. Mapping marine habitat suitability and uncertainty of Bayesian networks: a case study using Pacific benthic macrofauna

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrea Havron; Chris Goldfinger; Sarah Henkel; Bruce G. Marcot; Chris Romsos; Lisa Gilbane

    2017-01-01

    Resource managers increasingly use habitat suitability map products to inform risk management and policy decisions. Modeling habitat suitability of data-poor species over large areas requires careful attention to assumptions and limitations. Resulting habitat suitability maps can harbor uncertainties from data collection and modeling processes; yet these limitations...

  19. Climate change and tree-line ecosystems in the Sierra Nevada: Habitat suitability modelling to inform high-elevation forest dynamics monitoring

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Peggy E.; Alvarez, Otto; McKinney, Shawn T.; Li, Wenkai; Brooks, Matthew L.; Guo, Qinghua

    2017-01-01

    Whitebark pine and foxtail pine serve foundational roles in the subalpine zone of the Sierra Nevada. They provide the dominant structure in tree-line forests and regulate key ecosystem processes and community dynamics. Climate change models suggest that there will be changes in temperature regimes and in the timing and magnitude of precipitation within the current distribution of these species, and these changes may alter the species’ distributional limits. Other stressors include the non-native pathogen white pine blister rust and mountain pine beetle, which have played a role in the decline of whitebark pine throughout much of its range. The National Park Service is monitoring status and trends of these species. This report provides complementary information in the form of habitat suitability models to predict climate change impacts on the future distribution of these species within Sierra Nevada national parks.We used maximum entropy modeling to build habitat suitability models by relating species occurrence to environmental variables. Species occurrence was available from 328 locations for whitebark pine and 244 for foxtail pine across the species’ distributions within the parks. We constructed current climate surfaces for modeling by interpolating data from weather stations. Climate surfaces included mean, minimum, and maximum temperature and total precipitation for January, April, July, and October. We downscaled five general circulation models for the 2050s and the 2090s from ~125 km2 to 1 km2 under both an optimistic and an extreme climate scenario to bracket potential climatic change and its influence on projected suitable habitat. To describe anticipated changes in the distribution of suitable habitat, we compared, for each species, climate scenario, and time period, the current models with future models in terms of proportional change in habitat size, elevation distribution, model center points, and where habitat is predicted to expand or contract

  20. Chapter 13 Application of landscape and habitat suitability models to conservation: the Hoosier National Forest land-management plan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chadwick D. Rittenhouse; Stephen R. Shifley; William D. Dijak; Zhaofei Fan; Frank R., III Thompson; Joshua J. Millspaugh; Judith A. Perez; Cynthia M. Sandeno

    2011-01-01

    We demonstrate an approach to integrated land-management planning and quantify differences in vegetation and avian habitat conditions among 5 management alternatives as part of the Hoosier National Forest planning process. The alternatives differed in terms of the type, extent, magnitude, frequency, and location of management activities. We modeled ecological processes...

  1. Modeling amphibian energetics, habitat suitability, and movements of western toads, Anaxyrus (=Bufo) boreas, across present and future landscapes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bartelt, Paul E.; Klaver, Robert W.; Porter, Warren P.

    2010-01-01

    Effective conservation of amphibian populations requires the prediction of how amphibians use and move through a landscape. Amphibians are closely coupled to their physical environment. Thus an approach that uses the physiological attributes of amphibians, together with knowledge of their natural history, should be helpful. We used Niche Mapper™ to model the known movements and habitat use patterns of a population of Western toads (Anaxyrus (=Bufo) boreas) occupying forested habitats in southeastern Idaho. Niche Mapper uses first principles of environmental biophysics to combine features of topography, climate, land cover, and animal features to model microclimates and animal physiology and behavior across landscapes. Niche Mapper reproduced core body temperatures (Tc) and evaporation rates of live toads with average errors of 1.6 ± 0.4 °C and 0.8 ± 0.2 g/h, respectively. For four different habitat types, it reproduced similar mid-summer daily temperature patterns as those measured in the field and calculated evaporation rates (g/h) with an average error rate of 7.2 ± 5.5%. Sensitivity analyses indicate these errors do not significantly affect estimates of food consumption or activity. Using Niche Mapper we predicted the daily habitats used by free-ranging toads; our accuracy for female toads was greater than for male toads (74.2 ± 6.8% and 53.6 ± 15.8%, respectively), reflecting the stronger patterns of habitat selection among females. Using these changing to construct a cost surface, we also reconstructed movement paths that were consistent with field observations. The effect of climate warming on toads depends on the interaction of temperature and atmospheric moisture. If climate change occurs as predicted, results from Niche Mapper suggests that climate warming will increase the physiological cost of landscapes thereby limiting the activity for toads in different habitats.

  2. Modelling the spatial and seasonal distribution of suitable habitats of schistosomiasis intermediate host snails using Maxent in Ndumo area, KwaZulu-Natal Province, South Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tawanda Manyangadze

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Schistosomiasis is a snail-borne disease endemic in sub-Saharan Africa transmitted by freshwater snails. The distribution of schistosomiasis coincides with that of the intermediate hosts as determined by climatic and environmental factors. The aim of this paper was to model the spatial and seasonal distribution of suitable habitats for Bulinus globosus and Biomphalaria pfeifferi snail species (intermediate hosts for Schistosoma haematobium and Schistosoma mansoni, respectively in the Ndumo area of uMkhanyakude district, South Africa. Methods Maximum Entropy (Maxent modelling technique was used to predict the distribution of suitable habitats for B. globosus and B. pfeifferi using presence-only datasets with ≥ 5 and ≤ 12 sampling points in different seasons. Precipitation, maximum and minimum temperatures, Normalised Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI, Normalised Difference Water Index (NDWI, pH, slope and Enhanced Vegetation Index (EVI were the background variables in the Maxent models. The models were validated using the area under the curve (AUC and omission rate. Results The predicted suitable habitats for intermediate snail hosts varied with seasons. The AUC for models in all seasons ranged from 0.71 to 1 and the prediction rates were between 0.8 and 0.9. Although B. globosus was found at more localities in the Ndumo area, there was also evidence of cohabiting with B. pfiefferi at some of the locations. NDWI had significant contribution to the models in all seasons. Conclusion The Maxent model is robust in snail habitat suitability modelling even with small dataset of presence-only sampling sites. Application of the methods and design used in this study may be useful in developing a control and management programme for schistosomiasis in the Ndumo area.

  3. Abundance and Distribution Patterns of Thunnus albacares in Isla del Coco National Park through Predictive Habitat Suitability Models.

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    Cristina Gonzáles-Andrés

    Full Text Available Information on the distribution and habitat preferences of ecologically and commercially important species is essential for their management and protection. This is especially important as climate change, pollution, and overfishing change the structure and functioning of pelagic ecosystems. In this study, we used Bayesian hierarchical spatial-temporal models to map the Essential Fish Habitats of the Yellowfin tuna (Thunnus albacares in the waters around Isla del Coco National Park, Pacific Costa Rica, based on independent underwater observations from 1993 to 2013. We assessed if observed changes in the distribution and abundance of this species are related with habitat characteristics, fishing intensity or more extreme climatic events, including the El Niño Southern Oscillation, and changes on the average sea surface temperature. Yellowfin tuna showed a decreasing abundance trend in the sampled period, whereas higher abundances were found in shallow and warmer waters, with high concentration of chlorophyll-a, and in surrounding seamounts. In addition, El Niño Southern Oscillation events did not seem to affect Yellowfin tuna distribution and abundance. Understanding the habitat preferences of this species, using approaches as the one developed here, may help design integrated programs for more efficient management of vulnerable species.

  4. Effect of spatial and temporal scales on habitat suitability modeling: A case study of Ommastrephes bartramii in the northwest pacific ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gong, Caixia; Chen, Xinjun; Gao, Feng; Tian, Siquan

    2014-12-01

    Temporal and spatial scales play important roles in fishery ecology, and an inappropriate spatio-temporal scale may result in large errors in modeling fish distribution. The objective of this study is to evaluate the roles of spatio-temporal scales in habitat suitability modeling, with the western stock of winter-spring cohort of neon flying squid ( Ommastrephes bartramii) in the northwest Pacific Ocean as an example. In this study, the fishery-dependent data from the Chinese Mainland Squid Jigging Technical Group and sea surface temperature (SST) from remote sensing during August to October of 2003-2008 were used. We evaluated the differences in a habitat suitability index model resulting from aggregating data with 36 different spatial scales with a combination of three latitude scales (0.5°, 1° and 2°), four longitude scales (0.5°, 1°, 2° and 4°), and three temporal scales (week, fortnight, and month). The coefficients of variation (CV) of the weekly, biweekly and monthly suitability index (SI) were compared to determine which temporal and spatial scales of SI model are more precise. This study shows that the optimal temporal and spatial scales with the lowest CV are month, and 0.5° latitude and 0.5° longitude for O. bartramii in the northwest Pacific Ocean. This suitability index model developed with an optimal scale can be cost-effective in improving forecasting fishing ground and requires no excessive sampling efforts. We suggest that the uncertainty associated with spatial and temporal scales used in data aggregations needs to be considered in habitat suitability modeling.

  5. Phylogeography, historical demography and habitat suitability modelling of freshwater fishes inhabiting seasonally fluctuating Mediterranean river systems: a case study using the Iberian cyprinid Squalius valentinus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perea, S; Doadrio, I

    2015-07-01

    The Mediterranean freshwater fish fauna has evolved under constraints imposed by the seasonal weather/hydrological patterns that define the Mediterranean climate. These conditions have influenced the genetic and demographic structure of aquatic communities since their origins in the Mid-Pliocene. Freshwater species in Mediterranean-type climates will likely constitute genetically well-differentiated populations, to varying extents depending on basin size, as a consequence of fragmentation resulting from drought/flood cycles. We developed an integrative framework to study the spatial patterns in genetic diversity, demographic trends, habitat suitability modelling and landscape genetics, to evaluate the evolutionary response of Mediterranean-type freshwater fish to seasonal fluctuations in weather. To test this evolutionary response, the model species used was Squalius valentinus, an endemic cyprinid of the Spanish Levantine area, where seasonal weather fluctuations are extreme, although our findings may be extrapolated to other Mediterranean-type species. Our results underscore the significant role of the Mediterranean climate, along with Pleistocene glaciations, in diversification of S. valentinus. We found higher nuclear diversity in larger drainage basins, but higher mitochondrial diversity correlated to habitat suitability rather than basin size. We also found strong correlation between genetic structure and climatic factors associated with Mediterranean seasonality. Demographic and migration analyses suggested population expansion during glacial periods that also contributed to the current genetic structure of S. valentinus populations. The inferred models support the significant contribution of precipitation and temperature to S. valentinus habitat suitability and allow recognizing areas of habitat stability. We highlight the importance of stable habitat conditions, fostered by typical karstic springs found on the Mediterranean littoral coasts, for the

  6. Water-quality models to assess algal community dynamics, water quality, and fish habitat suitability for two agricultural land-use dominated lakes in Minnesota, 2014

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Erik A.; Kiesling, Richard L.; Ziegeweid, Jeffrey R.

    2017-07-20

    Fish habitat can degrade in many lakes due to summer blue-green algal blooms. Predictive models are needed to better manage and mitigate loss of fish habitat due to these changes. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), in cooperation with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, developed predictive water-quality models for two agricultural land-use dominated lakes in Minnesota—Madison Lake and Pearl Lake, which are part of Minnesota’s sentinel lakes monitoring program—to assess algal community dynamics, water quality, and fish habitat suitability of these two lakes under recent (2014) meteorological conditions. The interaction of basin processes to these two lakes, through the delivery of nutrient loads, were simulated using CE-QUAL-W2, a carbon-based, laterally averaged, two-dimensional water-quality model that predicts distribution of temperature and oxygen from interactions between nutrient cycling, primary production, and trophic dynamics.The CE-QUAL-W2 models successfully predicted water temperature and dissolved oxygen on the basis of the two metrics of mean absolute error and root mean square error. For Madison Lake, the mean absolute error and root mean square error were 0.53 and 0.68 degree Celsius, respectively, for the vertical temperature profile comparisons; for Pearl Lake, the mean absolute error and root mean square error were 0.71 and 0.95 degree Celsius, respectively, for the vertical temperature profile comparisons. Temperature and dissolved oxygen were key metrics for calibration targets. These calibrated lake models also simulated algal community dynamics and water quality. The model simulations presented potential explanations for persistently large total phosphorus concentrations in Madison Lake, key differences in nutrient concentrations between these lakes, and summer blue-green algal bloom persistence.Fish habitat suitability simulations for cool-water and warm-water fish indicated that, in general, both lakes contained a large

  7. Pairing success of Kirtland's warblers in marginal vs. suitable habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    John R. Probst; Jack P. Hayes

    1987-01-01

    We compared pairing success of male Kirtland's Warblers (Dendroica kirtlandii) in different habitats to test the hypothesis that a lower proportion of males in marginal habitat are mated. Fewer than 60% of the males in marginal habitat were paired, but 95% of the males in suitable habitat were paired. We estimated the overall pairing success of...

  8. The importance of biologically relevant microclimates in habitat suitability assessments.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Johanna Varner

    Full Text Available Predicting habitat suitability under climate change is vital to conserving biodiversity. However, current species distribution models rely on coarse scale climate data, whereas fine scale microclimate data may be necessary to assess habitat suitability and generate predictive models. Here, we evaluate disparities between temperature data at the coarse scale from weather stations versus fine-scale data measured in microhabitats required for a climate-sensitive mammal, the American pika (Ochotona princeps. We collected two years of temperature data in occupied talus habitats predicted to be suitable (high elevation and unsuitable (low elevation by the bioclimatic envelope approach. At low elevations, talus surface and interstitial microclimates drastically differed from ambient temperatures measured on-site and at a nearby weather station. Interstitial talus temperatures were frequently decoupled from high ambient temperatures, resulting in instantaneous disparities of over 30 °C between these two measurements. Microhabitat temperatures were also highly heterogeneous, such that temperature measurements within the same patch of talus were not more correlated than measurements at distant patches. An experimental manipulation revealed that vegetation cover may cool the talus surface by up to 10 °C during the summer, which may contribute to this spatial heterogeneity. Finally, low elevation microclimates were milder and less variable than typical alpine habitat, suggesting that, counter to species distribution model predictions, these seemingly unsuitable habitats may actually be better refugia for this species under climate change. These results highlight the importance of fine-scale microhabitat data in habitat assessments and underscore the notion that some critical refugia may be counterintuitive.

  9. An assessment of the effect of data partitioning on the performance of modelling algorithms for habitat suitability for ticks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Estrada-Peña, A; Thuiller, W

    2008-09-01

    A comparison of the performance of five modelling methods using presence/absence (generalized additive models, discriminant analysis) or presence-only (genetic algorithm for rule-set prediction, ecological niche factor analysis, Gower distance) data for modelling the distribution of the tick species Boophilus decoloratus (Koch, 1844) (Acarina: Ixodidae) at a continental scale (Africa) using climate data was conducted. This work explicitly addressed the usefulness of clustering using the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) to split original records and build partial models for each region (cluster) as a method of improving model performance. Models without clustering have a consistently lower performance (as measured by sensitivity and area under the curve [AUC]), although presence/absence models perform better than presence-only models. Two cluster-related variables, namely, prevalence (commonness of tick records in the cluster) and marginality (the relative position of the climate niche occupied by the tick in relation to that available in the cluster) greatly affect the performance of each model (P weighting procedures based on prevalence and marginality as derived from populations at each cluster produced a slightly lower predictive performance but a better estimation of the continental distribution of the tick. Therefore, cluster-derived models are able to effectively capture restricting conditions for different tick populations at a regional level. It is concluded that data partitioning is a powerful method with which to describe the climate niche of populations of a tick species, as adapted to local conditions. The use of this methodology greatly improves the performance of climate suitability models.

  10. Spatially-explicit hydrologic controls on benthic invertebrate habitat suitability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ceola, Serena; Bertuzzo, Enrico; Singer, Gabriel; Battin, Tom; Montanari, Alberto; Rinaldo, Andrea

    2014-05-01

    Streamflow variability is a major determinant of basin-scale distribution of benthic invertebrates. Here we present a probabilistic approach for a spatially explicit quantitative assessment of benthic invertebrate abundance as derived from near-bed flow variability throughout an entire stream network. We consider aquatic invertebrates as these are widely employed as sensitive indicators of fluvial ecosystem health and human-induced perturbations. Moving from the analytical characterization of site-specific probability distribution functions of streamflow and bottom shear stress, we achieve a spatial extension to a stream network ranging up to 5th order. Bottom shear stress distributions, coupled with habitat suitability curves derived from field studies, are then used to produce maps of invertebrate habitat suitability based on shear stress conditions. The proposed framework allows to inspect the possible impacts of human-induced perturbations of streamflow variability on river ecology. We apply our approach to an Austrian river network, for which rainfall and streamflow time series, river network hydraulic properties and local information on invertebrate abundance for a limited number of sites are available. This allows a comparison between observed species density versus modeled habitat suitability based on shear stress. Although the proposed strategy neglects ecological determinants other than hydraulic ones and thus represents an ecological minimal model, it allows derivation of important implications of water resource management and fluvial ecosystem protection for basin-scale distribution patterns of organisms.

  11. Quantifying suitable habitat of the threatened western prairie fringed orchid

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paige M. Wolken; Carolyn Hull Sieg; Stephen E. Williams

    2001-01-01

    Land managers need accurate and quick techniques to identify suitable habitat of species of interest. For species protected by federal or state laws, identification of suitable habitat is critical for developing a conservation strategy that includes reestablishing populations and altering management to address this need. In this research, we quantified vegetative and...

  12. Deep-Sea Soft Coral Habitat Suitability

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Deep-sea corals, also known as cold water corals, create complex communities that provide habitat for a variety of invertebrate and fish species, such as grouper,...

  13. Deep-Sea Stony Coral Habitat Suitability

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Deep-sea corals, also known as cold water corals, create complex communities that provide habitat for a variety of invertebrate and fish species, such as grouper,...

  14. Development of computational fluid dynamics--habitat suitability (CFD-HSI) models to identify potential passage--Challenge zones for migratory fishes in the Penobscot River

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haro, Alexander J.; Dudley, Robert W.; Chelminski, Michael

    2012-01-01

    A two-dimensional computational fluid dynamics-habitat suitability (CFD–HSI) model was developed to identify potential zones of shallow depth and high water velocity that may present passage challenges for five anadromous fish species in the Penobscot River, Maine, upstream from two existing dams and as a result of the proposed future removal of the dams. Potential depth-challenge zones were predicted for larger species at the lowest flow modeled in the dam-removal scenario. Increasing flows under both scenarios increased the number and size of potential velocity-challenge zones, especially for smaller species. This application of the two-dimensional CFD–HSI model demonstrated its capabilities to estimate the potential effects of flow and hydraulic alteration on the passage of migratory fish.

  15. The Invasive Species Forecasting System (ISFS): An iRODS-Based, Cloud-Enabled Decision Support System for Invasive Species Habitat Suitability Modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gill, Roger; Schnase, John L.

    2012-01-01

    The Invasive Species Forecasting System (ISFS) is an online decision support system that allows users to load point occurrence field sample data for a plant species of interest and quickly generate habitat suitability maps for geographic regions of interest, such as a national park, monument, forest, or refuge. Target customers for ISFS are natural resource managers and decision makers who have a need for scientifically valid, model- based predictions of the habitat suitability of plant species of management concern. In a joint project involving NASA and the Maryland Department of Natural Resources, ISFS has been used to model the potential distribution of Wavyleaf Basketgrass in Maryland's Chesapeake Bay Watershed. Maximum entropy techniques are used to generate predictive maps using predictor datasets derived from remotely sensed data and climate simulation outputs. The workflow to run a model is implemented in an iRODS microservice using a custom ISFS file driver that clips and re-projects data to geographic regions of interest, then shells out to perform MaxEnt processing on the input data. When the model completes, all output files and maps from the model run are registered in iRODS and made accessible to the user. The ISFS user interface is a web browser that uses the iRODS PHP client to interact with the ISFS/iRODS- server. ISFS is designed to reside in a VMware virtual machine running SLES 11 and iRODS 3.0. The ISFS virtual machine is hosted in a VMware vSphere private cloud infrastructure to deliver the online service.

  16. Variation in habitat suitability does not always relate to variation in species' plant functional traits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thuiller, Wilfried; Albert, Cécile H; Dubuis, Anne; Randin, Christophe; Guisan, Antoine

    2010-02-23

    Habitat suitability models, which relate species occurrences to environmental variables, are assumed to predict suitable conditions for a given species. If these models are reliable, they should relate to change in plant growth and function. In this paper, we ask the question whether habitat suitability models are able to predict variation in plant functional traits, often assumed to be a good surrogate for a species' overall health and vigour. Using a thorough sampling design, we show a tight link between variation in plant functional traits and habitat suitability for some species, but not for others. Our contrasting results pave the way towards a better understanding of how species cope with varying habitat conditions and demonstrate that habitat suitability models can provide meaningful descriptions of the functional niche in some cases, but not in others.

  17. Variation in habitat suitability does not always relate to variation in species' plant functional traits

    OpenAIRE

    Thuiller, Wilfried; Albert, Cécile H.; Dubuis, Anne; Randin, Christophe; Guisan, Antoine

    2009-01-01

    Habitat suitability models, which relate species occurrences to environmental variables, are assumed to predict suitable conditions for a given species. If these models are reliable, they should relate to change in plant growth and function. In this paper, we ask the question whether habitat suitability models are able to predict variation in plant functional traits, often assumed to be a good surrogate for a species' overall health and vigour. Using a thorough sampling design, we show a tigh...

  18. Combining inferences from models of capture efficiency, detectability, and suitable habitat to classify landscapes for conservation of threatened bull trout

    Science.gov (United States)

    James T. Peterson; Jason Dunham

    2003-01-01

    Effective conservation efforts for at-risk species require knowledge of the locations of existing populations. Species presence can be estimated directly by conducting field-sampling surveys or alternatively by developing predictive models. Direct surveys can be expensive and inefficient, particularly for rare and difficult- to-sample species, and models of species...

  19. Computational fluid dynamics-habitat suitability index (CFD-HSI) modelling as an exploratory tool for assessing passability of riverine migratory challenge zones for fish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haro, Alexander J.; Chelminski, Michael; Dudley, Robert W.

    2015-01-01

    We developed two-dimensional computational fluid hydraulics-habitat suitability index (CFD-HSI) models to identify and qualitatively assess potential zones of shallow water depth and high water velocity that may present passage challenges for five major anadromous fish species in a 2.63-km reach of the main stem Penobscot River, Maine, as a result of a dam removal downstream of the reach. Suitability parameters were based on distribution of fish lengths and body depths and transformed to cruising, maximum sustained and sprint swimming speeds. Zones of potential depth and velocity challenges were calculated based on the hydraulic models; ability of fish to pass a challenge zone was based on the percent of river channel that the contiguous zone spanned and its maximum along-current length. Three river flows (low: 99.1 m3 sec-1; normal: 344.9 m3 sec-1; and high: 792.9 m3 sec-1) were modelled to simulate existing hydraulic conditions and hydraulic conditions simulating removal of a dam at the downstream boundary of the reach. Potential depth challenge zones were nonexistent for all low-flow simulations of existing conditions for deeper-bodied fishes. Increasing flows for existing conditions and removal of the dam under all flow conditions increased the number and size of potential velocity challenge zones, with the effects of zones being more pronounced for smaller species. The two-dimensional CFD-HSI model has utility in demonstrating gross effects of flow and hydraulic alteration, but may not be as precise a predictive tool as a three-dimensional model. Passability of the potential challenge zones cannot be precisely quantified for two-dimensional or three-dimensional models due to untested assumptions and incomplete data on fish swimming performance and behaviours.

  20. A simple index of habitat suitability for Cape mountain zebras

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. Novellie

    1993-09-01

    Full Text Available An index of habitat suitability for Cape mountain zebras was calculated using two parameters: acceptability indices for different grass species, and the aerial cover of the grass species in the habitat. The index was tested by calculating its value for a range of different habitat patches and comparing this with the frequency of use of the patches by zebras. The close relationship between the index and the observed frequency of use verified that the index could be used as a guide to habitat suitability. Two methods were used to determine the frequency of use of the patches: counts of faecal pellet groups and frequency of sightings. Both methods yielded similar results but the pellet group counts were less time- consuming and expensive. It is recommended that the index of habitat suitability be used (i as a parameter for monitoring of long-term changes in habitat suitability in the Mountain Zebra National Park and (ii as a guide for selecting appropriate areas to re- introduce mountain zebras.

  1. [Suitability evaluation of great bustard (Otis tarda)'s wintering habitat in Baiyangdian basin].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Zhi-xuan; Yan, Deng-hua; Weng, Bai-sha; Zhang, Biao

    2011-07-01

    Based on the related researches of great bustard's wintering habitat selection as well as the advices of related experts and the distribution records of great bustard in Baiyangdian basin, 3 first class indices and 13 second indices were chosen to characterize the key factors affecting the wintering habitat selection of great bustard, and a habitat quality evaluation model was built to assess the quality of wintering habitat selection of great bustard in Baiyangdian basin. In 2005, the suitable wintering habitats of great bustard in the basin had an area of 11907.25 km2, accounting for 34.1% of the total. Of the suitable wintering habitats, the most suitable habitats had an area of 4596.25 km2, only 13.2% of the total and comparatively concentrated in two zones, i.e., Baiyangdian Wetland Natural Reserve and its peripheral area (zone I) in the east of Baiyangdian basin, and Xingtang and Quyang counties (zone II) in the southwest of Baiyangdian basin. The total area of the most suitable habitats in zone I and zone II was 2803.55 km2, accounting for 61.0% of the most suitable habitats in the basin. To protect the wintering habitat of great bustard in the basin, proper measures should be taken according to the environmental features of the two zones.

  2. Disentangling the effects of habitat suitability, dispersal, and fragmentation on the distribution of river fishes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Radinger, Johannes; Wolter, Christian

    2015-06-01

    Habitat suitability, dispersal potential, and fragmentation influence the distribution of stream fishes; however, their relative influence and interacting effects on species distributions are poorly understood, which may result in uncertain outcomes of river rehabilitation and conservation. Using empirical data describing 17 relatively common stream fishes, we combine (1) species habitat suitability models (MaxEnt) with a (2) species dispersal model (FIDIMO) and a (3) worst-case scenario of the influence of river fragmentation on dispersal. Using generalized linear mixed models, we aimed to uncover the role of these factors in explaining the probability of presence. Simulations over nine years allowed for assessing the relative importance of dispersal over time for structuring species occurrences vs. the importance of habitat suitability. Models combining all three structuring factors performed consistently better in predicting the spatial occurrence patterns than models including only single factors. Our results confirmed that distribution patterns of stream fishes are jointly controlled by species dispersal and habitat suitability. An increase of 0.1 habitat suitability probability more than doubled the odds of species occurrence; an increase of 0.1 dispersal probability yielded a 14-fold increase of the odds of species occurrence. Temporal simulations revealed that over short time frames (1-2 years) dispersal from nearby source populations is four times more important than habitat suitability for species presence. However, over longer time periods, the importance of habitat suitability increases relative to the importance of dispersal. Surprisingly, fragmentation by migration barriers did not appear as a significant driver of occurrence patterns. Concluding, these findings demonstrate the importance of the spatial arrangement of suitable habitats and potential source populations, as well as their relative position in relation to barriers. We emphasize

  3. Predicted Deep-Sea Coral Habitat Suitability for the U.S. West Coast

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guinotte, John M.; Davies, Andrew J.

    2014-01-01

    Regional scale habitat suitability models provide finer scale resolution and more focused predictions of where organisms may occur. Previous modelling approaches have focused primarily on local and/or global scales, while regional scale models have been relatively few. In this study, regional scale predictive habitat models are presented for deep-sea corals for the U.S. West Coast (California, Oregon and Washington). Model results are intended to aid in future research or mapping efforts and to assess potential coral habitat suitability both within and outside existing bottom trawl closures (i.e. Essential Fish Habitat (EFH)) and identify suitable habitat within U.S. National Marine Sanctuaries (NMS). Deep-sea coral habitat suitability was modelled at 500 m×500 m spatial resolution using a range of physical, chemical and environmental variables known or thought to influence the distribution of deep-sea corals. Using a spatial partitioning cross-validation approach, maximum entropy models identified slope, temperature, salinity and depth as important predictors for most deep-sea coral taxa. Large areas of highly suitable deep-sea coral habitat were predicted both within and outside of existing bottom trawl closures and NMS boundaries. Predicted habitat suitability over regional scales are not currently able to identify coral areas with pin point accuracy and probably overpredict actual coral distribution due to model limitations and unincorporated variables (i.e. data on distribution of hard substrate) that are known to limit their distribution. Predicted habitat results should be used in conjunction with multibeam bathymetry, geological mapping and other tools to guide future research efforts to areas with the highest probability of harboring deep-sea corals. Field validation of predicted habitat is needed to quantify model accuracy, particularly in areas that have not been sampled. PMID:24759613

  4. Predicted Habitat Suitability for Montipora Corals in the Au'au Channel Region

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This raster denotes predicted habitat suitability for Montipora in the Au'au Channel region. Maximum Entropy (MaxEnt) modeling software was used to create this...

  5. Predicted Habitat Suitability for Porites in the Au'au Channel Region

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This raster denotes predicted habitat suitability for Porites in the Au'au Channel region. Maximum Entropy (MaxEnt) modeling software was used to create this...

  6. Predicted Habitat Suitability for Porites Corals in the Au'au Channel Region

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This raster denotes predicted habitat suitability for Porites in the Au'au Channel region. Maximum Entropy (MaxEnt) modeling software was used to create this...

  7. Predicted Habitat Suitability for Montipora in the Au'au Channel Region

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This raster denotes predicted habitat suitability for Montipora in the Auau Channel region. Maximum Entropy (MaxEnt) modeling software was used to create this...

  8. Predicted Habitat Suitability for Leptoseris Corals in the Au'au Channel Region

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This raster denotes predicted habitat suitability for Leptoseris in the Au'au Channel region. Maximum Entropy (MaxEnt) modeling software was used to create this...

  9. Predicted Habitat Suitability for All Mesophotic Corals in the Au'au Channel Region

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This raster denotes predicted habitat suitability for all mesophotic corals in the Au'au Channel region. Maximum Entropy (MaxEnt) modeling software was used to...

  10. Predicted Habitat Suitability for Leptoseris in the Au'au Channel Region

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This raster denotes predicted habitat suitability for Leptoseris in the Au'au Channel region. Maximum Entropy (MaxEnt) modeling software was used to create this...

  11. From Points to Forecasts: Predicting Invasive Species Habitat Suitability in the Near Term

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tracy R. Holcombe

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available We used near-term climate scenarios for the continental United States, to model 12 invasive plants species. We created three potential habitat suitability models for each species using maximum entropy modeling: (1 current; (2 2020; and (3 2035. Area under the curve values for the models ranged from 0.92 to 0.70, with 10 of the 12 being above 0.83 suggesting strong and predictable species-environment matching. Change in area between the current potential habitat and 2035 ranged from a potential habitat loss of about 217,000 km2, to a potential habitat gain of about 133,000 km2.

  12. Evaluating timber harvesting impacts on wildlife habitat suitability using FOREX

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chris B. LeDoux

    1997-01-01

    Precommercial, commercial, and final harvesting operations can impact wildlife habitat suitability by altering the vegetation composition on a given site. Harvesting operations remove trees and many times provide the necessary perturbation to trigger successional conditions different from those that existed prior to the harvest. Although these new successional changes...

  13. A multistage decision support framework to guide tree species management under climate change via habitat suitability and colonization models, and a knowledge-based scoring system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anantha M. Prasad; Louis R. Iverson; Stephen N. Matthews; Matthew P. Peters

    2016-01-01

    Context. No single model can capture the complex species range dynamics under changing climates--hence the need for a combination approach that addresses management concerns. Objective. A multistage approach is illustrated to manage forested landscapes under climate change. We combine a tree species habitat model--DISTRIB II, a species colonization model--SHIFT, and...

  14. Using a rule-based envelope model to predict the expansion of habitat suitability within New Zealand for the tick Haemaphysalis longicornis, with future projections based on two climate change scenarios.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lawrence, K E; Summers, S R; Heath, A C G; McFadden, A M J; Pulford, D J; Tait, A B; Pomroy, W E

    2017-08-30

    Haemaphysalis longicornis is the only species of tick present in New Zealand which infests livestock and is also the only competent vector for Theileria orientalis. Since 2012, New Zealand has suffered from an epidemic of infectious bovine anaemia associated with T. orientalis, an obligate intracellular protozoan parasite of cattle and buffaloes. The aim of this study was to predict the spatial distribution of habitat suitability of New Zealand for the tick H. longicornis using a simple rule-based climate envelope model, to validate the model against published data and use the validated model to project an expansion in habitat suitability for H. longicornis under two alternative climate change scenarios for the periods 2046-2065 and 2081-2100, relative to the climate of 1981-2010. A rule-based climate envelope model was developed based on the environmental requirements for off-host tick survival. The resulting model was validated against a maximum entropy environmental niche model of environmental suitability for T. orientalis transmission and against a H. longicornis occurrence map. Validation was completed using the I-similarity statistic and by linear regression. The H. longicornis climate envelope model predicted that 75% of cattle farms in the North Island, 3% of cattle farms in the South Island and 54% of cattle farms in New Zealand overall have habitats potentially suitable for the establishment of H. longicornis. The validation methods showed an acceptable level of agreement between the envelope model and published data. Both of the climate change scenarios, for each of the time periods, projected only slight to moderate increases in the average farm habitat suitability scores for all the South Island regions. However, only for the West Coast, Marlborough, Tasman, and Nelson regions did these increases in environmental suitability translate into an increased proportion of cattle farms with low or high H. longicornis habitat suitability. These results will

  15. Habitat suitability and movement corridors of grey wolf (Canis lupus) in Northern Pakistan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kabir, Muhammad; Hameed, Shoaib; Ali, Hussain; Bosso, Luciano; Din, Jaffar Ud; Bischof, Richard; Redpath, Steve; Nawaz, Muhammad Ali

    2017-01-01

    Habitat suitability models are useful to understand species distribution and to guide management and conservation strategies. The grey wolf (Canis lupus) has been extirpated from most of its historic range in Pakistan primarily due to its impact on livestock and livelihoods. We used non-invasive survey data from camera traps and genetic sampling to develop a habitat suitability model for C. lupus in northern Pakistan and to explore the extent of connectivity among populations. We detected suitable habitat of grey wolf using a maximum entropy approach (Maxent ver. 3.4.0) and identified suitable movement corridors using the Circuitscape 4.0 tool. Our model showed high levels of predictive performances, as seen from the values of area under curve (0.971±0.002) and true skill statistics (0.886±0.021). The main predictors for habitat suitability for C. lupus were distances to road, mean temperature of the wettest quarter and distance to river. The model predicted ca. 23,129 km2 of suitable areas for wolf in Pakistan, with much of suitable habitat in remote and inaccessible areas that appeared to be well connected through vulnerable movement corridors. These movement corridors suggest that potentially the wolf range can expand in Pakistan's Northern Areas. However, managing protected areas with stringent restrictions is challenging in northern Pakistan, in part due to heavy dependence of people on natural resources. The habitat suitability map provided by this study can inform future management strategies by helping authorities to identify key conservation areas.

  16. Assessing the Effects of Management Alternatives on Habitat Suitability in a Forested Landscape of Northeastern China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Longru, Jin; He, Hong S.; Yufei, Zhou; Rencang, Bu; Keping, Sun

    2010-05-01

    Forest management often has cumulative, long-lasting effects on wildlife habitat suitability and the effects may be impractical to evaluate using landscape-scale field experiments. To understand such effects, we linked a spatially explicit landscape disturbance and succession model (LANDIS) with habitat suitability index (HSI) models to assess the effects of management alternatives on habitat suitability in a forested landscape of northeastern China. LANDIS was applied to simulate future forest landscape changes under four management alternatives (no cutting, clearcutting, selective cutting I and II) over a 200-year horizon. The simulation outputs were linked with HSI models for three wildlife species, the red squirrel ( Sciurus vulgaris), the red deer ( Cervus elaphus) and the hazel grouse ( Bonasa bonasia). These species are chosen because they represent numerous species that have distinct habitat requirements in our study area. We assessed their habitat suitability based on the mean HSI values, which is a measure of the average habitat quality. Our simulation results showed that no one management scenario was the best for all species and various forest management scenarios would lead to conflicting wildlife habitat outcomes. How to choose a scenario is dependent on the trade-off of economical, ecological and social goals. Our modeling effort could provide decision makers with relative comparisons among management scenarios from the perspective of biodiversity conservation. The general simulation results were expected based on our knowledge of forest management and habitat relationships of the species, which confirmed that the coupled modeling approach correctly simulated the assumed relationships between the wildlife, forest composition, age structure, and spatial configuration of habitat. However, several emergent results revealed the unexpected outcomes that a management scenario may lead to.

  17. Predicting habitat suitability for wildlife in southeastern Arizona using Geographic Information Systems: scaled quail, a case study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirby D. Bristow; Susan R. Boe; Richard A. Ockenfels

    2005-01-01

    Studies have used Geographic Information Systems (GIS) to evaluate habitat suitability for wildlife on a landscape scale, yet few have established the accuracy of these models. Based on documented habitat selection patterns of scaled quail (Callipepla squamata pallida), we produced GIS covers for several habitat parameters to create a map of...

  18. Habitat suitability and conservation of the Giant Gartersnake (Thamnophis gigas) in the Sacramento Valley of California

    Science.gov (United States)

    Halstead, B.J.; Wylie, G.D.; Casazza, Michael L.

    2010-01-01

    Resource managers often have little information regarding the habitat requirements and distribution of rare species. Factor analysis-based habitat suitability models describe the ecological niche of a species and identify locations where these conditions occur on the landscape using existing occurrence data. We used factor analyses to assess the suitability of habitats for Thamnophis gigas (Giant Gartersnake), a rare, threatened species endemic to the Central Valley of California, USA, and to map the locations of habitat suitable for T. gigas in the Sacramento Valley. Factor analyses indicated that the niche of T. gigas is composed of sites near rice agriculture with low stream densities. Sites with high canal densities and near wetlands also appeared suitable, but results for these variables were sensitive to potential sampling bias. In the Sacramento Valley, suitable habitats occur primarily in the central portion of the valley floor. Based upon the results of the factor analyses, recovery planning for T. gigas will require an on-the-ground assessment of the current distribution and abundance of T. gigas, maintaining the few remaining natural wetlands and the practice of rice agriculture in the Sacramento Valley, and studying the effects of agricultural practices and land use changes on populations of T. gigas. ?? 2010 by the American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists.

  19. Using forest inventory data to assess fisher resting habitat suitability in California.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zielinski, William J; Truex, Richard L; Dunk, Jeffrey R; Gaman, Tom

    2006-06-01

    The fisher (Martes pennanti) is a forest-dwelling carnivore whose current distribution and association with late-seral forest conditions make it vulnerable to stand-altering human activities or natural disturbances. Fishers select a variety of structures for daily resting bouts. These habitat elements, together with foraging and reproductive (denning) habitat, constitute the habitat requirements of fishers. We develop a model capable of predicting the suitability of fisher resting habitat using standard forest vegetation inventory data. The inventory data were derived from Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA), a nationwide probability-based sample used to estimate forest characteristics. We developed the model by comparing vegetation and topographic data at 75 randomly selected fisher resting structures in the southern Sierra Nevada with 232 forest inventory plots. We collected vegetation data at fisher resting locations using the FIA vegetation sampling protocol and centering the 1-ha FIA plot on the resting structure. To distinguish used and available inventory plots, we used nonparametric logistic regression to evaluate a set of a priori biological models. The top model represented a dominant portion of the Akaike weights (0.87), explained 31.5% of the deviance, and included the following variables: average canopy closure, basal area of trees forest inventory data allows the assessment and monitoring of change in fisher resting habitat suitability over large regions with no additional sampling effort. Although models were constrained to include only variables available from the list of those measured using the FIA protocol, we did not find this to be a shortcoming. The model makes it possible to compare average resting habitat suitability values before and after forest management treatments, among administrative units, across regions and over time. Considering hundreds of plot estimates as a sample of habitat conditions over large spatial scales can bring a broad

  20. Application of GIS to predict malaria hotspots based on Anopheles arabiensis habitat suitability in Southern Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gwitira, Isaiah; Murwira, Amon; Zengeya, Fadzai M.; Shekede, Munyaradzi Davis

    2018-02-01

    Malaria remains a major public health problem and a principal cause of morbidity and mortality in most developing countries. Although malaria still presents health problems, significant successes have been recorded in reducing deaths resulting from the disease. As malaria transmission continues to decline, control interventions will increasingly depend on the ability to define high-risk areas known as malaria hotspots. Therefore, there is urgent need to use geospatial tools such as geographic information system to detect spatial patterns of malaria and delineate disease hot spots for better planning and management. Thus, accurate mapping and prediction of seasonality of malaria hotspots is an important step towards developing strategies for effective malaria control. In this study, we modelled seasonal malaria hotspots as a function of habitat suitability of Anopheles arabiensis (A. Arabiensis) as a first step towards predicting likely seasonal malaria hotspots that could provide guidance in targeted malaria control. We used Geographical information system (GIS) and spatial statistic methods to identify seasonal hotspots of malaria cases at the country level. In order to achieve this, we first determined the spatial distribution of seasonal malaria hotspots using the Getis Ord Gi* statistic based on confirmed positive malaria cases recorded at health facilities in Zimbabwe over four years (1996-1999). We then used MAXENT technique to model habitat suitability of A. arabiensis from presence data collected from 1990 to 2002 based on bioclimatic variables and altitude. Finally, we used autologistic regression to test the extent to which malaria hotspots can be predicted using A. arabiensis habitat suitability. Our results show that A. arabiensis habitat suitability consistently and significantly (p malaria hotspots from 1996 to 1999. Overall, our results show that malaria hotspots can be predicted using A. arabiensis habitat suitability, suggesting the possibility of

  1. Climate and air pollution impacts on habitat suitability of Austrian forest ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dirnböck, Thomas; Djukic, Ika; Kitzler, Barbara; Kobler, Johannes; Mol-Dijkstra, Janet P; Posch, Max; Reinds, Gert Jan; Schlutow, Angela; Starlinger, Franz; Wamelink, Wieger G W

    2017-01-01

    Climate change and excess deposition of airborne nitrogen (N) are among the main stressors to floristic biodiversity. One particular concern is the deterioration of valuable habitats such as those protected under the European Habitat Directive. In future, climate-driven shifts (and losses) in the species potential distribution, but also N driven nutrient enrichment may threaten these habitats. We applied a dynamic geochemical soil model (VSD+) together with a novel niche-based plant response model (PROPS) to 5 forest habitat types (18 forest sites) protected under the EU Directive in Austria. We assessed how future climate change and N deposition might affect habitat suitability, defined as the capacity of a site to host its typical plant species. Our evaluation indicates that climate change will be the main driver of a decrease in habitat suitability in the future in Austria. The expected climate change will increase the occurrence of thermophilic plant species while decreasing cold-tolerant species. In addition to these direct impacts, climate change scenarios caused an increase of the occurrence probability of oligotrophic species due to a higher N immobilisation in woody biomass leading to soil N depletion. As a consequence, climate change did offset eutrophication from N deposition, even when no further reduction in N emissions was assumed. Our results show that climate change may have positive side-effects in forest habitats when multiple drivers of change are considered.

  2. Modeling habitat suitability for occurrence of highly pathogenic avian influenza virus H5N1 in domestic poultry in Asia: a spatial multicriteria decision analysis approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stevens, Kim B; Gilbert, Marius; Pfeiffer, Dirk U

    2013-03-01

    Risk maps are one of several sources used to inform risk-based disease surveillance and control systems, but their production can be hampered by lack of access to suitable disease data. In such situations, knowledge-driven spatial modeling methods are an alternative to data-driven approaches. This study used multicriteria decision analysis (MCDA) to identify areas in Asia suitable for the occurrence of highly pathogenic avian influenza virus (HPAIV) H5N1 in domestic poultry. Areas most suitable for H5N1 occurrence included Bangladesh, the southern tip and eastern coast of Vietnam, parts of north-central Thailand and large parts of eastern China. The predictive accuracy of the final model, as determined by the area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (ROC AUC), was 0.670 (95% CI 0.667-0.673) suggesting that, in data-scarce environments, MCDA provides a reasonable alternative to the data-driven approaches usually used to inform risk-based disease surveillance and control strategies. Crown Copyright © 2012. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Climate change may threaten habitat suitability of threatened plant species within Chinese nature reserves

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wan, Jizhong

    2016-01-01

    Climate change has the potential to alter the distributions of threatened plant species, and may therefore diminish the capacity of nature reserves to protect threatened plant species. Chinese nature reserves contain a rich diversity of plant species that are at risk of becoming more threatened by climate change. Hence, it is urgent to identify the extent to which future climate change may compromise the suitability of threatened plant species habitats within Chinese nature reserves. Here, we modelled the climate suitability of 82 threatened plant species within 168 nature reserves across climate change scenarios. We used Maxent modelling based on species occurrence localities and evaluated climate change impacts using the magnitude of change in climate suitability and the degree of overlap between current and future climatically suitable habitats. There was a significant relationship between overlap with current and future climate suitability of all threatened plant species habitats and the magnitude of changes in climate suitability. Our projections estimate that the climate suitability of more than 60 threatened plant species will decrease and that climate change threatens the habitat suitability of plant species in more than 130 nature reserves under the low, medium, and high greenhouse gas concentration scenarios by both 2050s and 2080s. Furthermore, future climate change may substantially threaten tree plant species through changes in annual mean temperature. These results indicate that climate change may threaten plant species that occur within Chinese nature reserves. Therefore, we suggest that climate change projections should be integrated into the conservation and management of threatened plant species within nature reserves. PMID:27326373

  4. Assessment of fine-scale resource selection and spatially explicit habitat suitability modelling for a re-introduced tiger (Panthera tigris) population in central India

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Sarkar, Mriganka Shekhar; Sen, Subharanjan; Saha, Goutam Kumar; Krishnamurthy, Ramesh; Johnson, Jeyaraj A

    2017-01-01

    Background Large carnivores influence ecosystem functions at various scales. Thus, their local extinction is not only a species-specific conservation concern, but also reflects on the overall habitat quality and ecosystem value...

  5. Future habitat suitability for coral reef ecosystems under global warming and ocean acidification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Couce, Elena; Ridgwell, Andy; Hendy, Erica J

    2013-12-01

    Rising atmospheric CO2 concentrations are placing spatially divergent stresses on the world's tropical coral reefs through increasing ocean surface temperatures and ocean acidification. We show how these two stressors combine to alter the global habitat suitability for shallow coral reef ecosystems, using statistical Bioclimatic Envelope Models rather than basing projections on any a priori assumptions of physiological tolerances or fixed thresholds. We apply two different modeling approaches (Maximum Entropy and Boosted Regression Trees) with two levels of complexity (one a simplified and reduced environmental variable version of the other). Our models project a marked temperature-driven decline in habitat suitability for many of the most significant and bio-diverse tropical coral regions, particularly in the central Indo-Pacific. This is accompanied by a temperature-driven poleward range expansion of favorable conditions accelerating up to 40-70 km per decade by 2070. We find that ocean acidification is less influential for determining future habitat suitability than warming, and its deleterious effects are centered evenly in both hemispheres between 5° and 20° latitude. Contrary to expectations, the combined impact of ocean surface temperature rise and acidification leads to little, if any, degradation in future habitat suitability across much of the Atlantic and areas currently considered 'marginal' for tropical corals, such as the eastern Equatorial Pacific. These results are consistent with fossil evidence of range expansions during past warm periods. In addition, the simplified models are particularly sensitive to short-term temperature variations and their projections correlate well with reported locations of bleaching events. Our approach offers new insights into the relative impact of two global environmental pressures associated with rising atmospheric CO2 on potential future habitats, but greater understanding of past and current controls on coral

  6. Subterranean systems provide a suitable overwintering habitat for Salamandra salamandra

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monika Balogová

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available The fire salamander (Salamandra salamandra has been repeatedly noted to occur in natural and artificial subterranean systems. Despite the obvious connection of this species with underground shelters, their level of dependence and importance to the species is still not fully understood. In this study, we carried out long-term monitoring based on the capture-mark-recapture method in two wintering populations aggregated in extensive underground habitats. Using the POPAN model we found the population size in a natural shelter to be more than twice that of an artificial underground shelter. Survival and recapture probabilities calculated using the Cormack-Jolly-Seber model were very constant over time, with higher survival values in males than in females and juveniles, though in terms of recapture probability, the opposite situation was recorded. In addition, survival probability obtained from Cormack-Jolly-Seber model was higher than survival from POPAN model. The observed bigger population size and the lower recapture rate in the natural cave was probably a reflection of habitat complexity. Our study showed that regular visits are needed to detect the true significance of underground shelters for fire salamanders. The presence of larvae was recorded in both wintering sites, especially in bodies of water near the entrance. On the basis of previous and our observations we incline to the view, that karst areas can induce not only laying in underground shelters but also group wintering in this species. Our study highlights the strong connection of the life cycle of fire salamanders with underground shelters and their essential importance for the persistence of some populations during unfavourable conditions and breeding activity. In addition, the study introduces the POPAN and Cormac-Jolly-Seber models for estimating of population size, survival and recapture probability in wintering populations of the species, which could provide important information

  7. Winter Season Habitat Suitability Index for Greater Sage-Grouse in Nevada and northeastern California

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior — This raster represents a continuous surface of sage-grouse habitat suitability index (HSI) values for Nevada during the winter season, and is a surrogate for habitat...

  8. Summer Season Habitat Suitability Index for Greater Sage-grouse in Nevada and northeastern California

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior — This raster represents a continuous surface of sage-grouse habitat suitability index (HSI) values for Nevada during summer, which is a surrogate for habitat...

  9. Fuzzy modelling of Atlantic salmon physical habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    St-Hilaire, André; Mocq, Julien; Cunjak, Richard

    2015-04-01

    Fish habitat models typically attempt to quantify the amount of available river habitat for a given fish species for various flow and hydraulic conditions. To achieve this, information on the preferred range of values of key physical habitat variables (e.g. water level, velocity, substrate diameter) for the targeted fishs pecies need to be modelled. In this context, we developed several habitat suitability indices sets for three Atlantic salmon life stages (young-of-the-year (YOY), parr, spawning adults) with the help of fuzzy logic modeling. Using the knowledge of twenty-seven experts, from both sides of the Atlantic Ocean, we defined fuzzy sets of four variables (depth, substrate size, velocity and Habitat Suitability Index, or HSI) and associated fuzzy rules. When applied to the Romaine River (Canada), median curves of standardized Weighted Usable Area (WUA) were calculated and a confidence interval was obtained by bootstrap resampling. Despite the large range of WUA covered by the expert WUA curves, confidence intervals were relatively narrow: an average width of 0.095 (on a scale of 0 to 1) for spawning habitat, 0.155 for parr rearing habitat and 0.160 for YOY rearing habitat. When considering an environmental flow value corresponding to 90% of the maximum reached by WUA curve, results seem acceptable for the Romaine River. Generally, this proposed fuzzy logic method seems suitable to model habitat availability for the three life stages, while also providing an estimate of uncertainty in salmon preferences.

  10. Changing land use and its impact on the habitat suitability for wintering Anseriformes in China's Poyang Lake region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tang, Xuguang; Li, Hengpeng; Xu, Xibao; Yang, Guishan; Liu, Guihua; Li, Xinyan; Chen, Dongqiang

    2016-07-01

    As an internationally important wetland for migratory waterbirds, China's Poyang Lake region has experienced substantial changes in land use during the past two decades owing to climate change and anthropogenic disturbances. Recent dam constructions on the Yangtze River and its tributaries for agriculture and hydroelectric power exert strong effects on the hydrological regimes of this lake. However, few studies have investigated how the land-use changes through time affect the habitat suitability for wintering Anseriformes-the largest community in this region. Thus, it is necessary to timely monitor changes in the habitat quality and understand the potential factors that alter it. In this study, three periods (1995, 2005 and 2014) of typical environmental indicators that have direct impacts on foraging and resting for the Anserformes, including proximity to water (density of lakes, rivers and ponds), human disturbances (density of residences and various road networks), preferred land cover types and food availability (NDVI), are integrated to develop a habitat suitability index model for habitat mapping. The results indicate that long-term lake shrinkage in low-water periods led to greatly expanded wetlands in these years, which provided more suitable habitat for migratory waterfowl. The amount of highly suitable habitat in 2014 was nearly twice as much as in 1995. Recent survey data from 1997 to 2013 also revealed an increase in the population size, and confirmed the improvement of habitat suitability in the Poyang Lake region. Spatial analysis revealed that land use changes contributed most to the improved habitat coverage between 1995 and 2014. However, the relative significances of these transformations for highly suitable and moderately suitable habitats are strikingly different. Increases in wetland and paddy field area are the main reasons for explaining these improvements, respectively. The framework model proposed in this study will help governments to

  11. Climatic niche divergence and habitat suitability of eight alien invasive weeds in China under climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wan, Ji-Zhong; Wang, Chun-Jing; Tan, Jing-Fang; Yu, Fei-Hai

    2017-03-01

    Testing climatic niche divergence and modeling habitat suitability under conditions of climate change are important for developing strategies to limit the introduction and expansion of alien invasive weeds (AIWs) and providing important ecological and evolutionary insights. We assessed climatic niches in both native and invasive ranges as well as habitat suitability under climate change for eight representative Chinese AIWs from the American continent. We used climatic variables associated with occurrence records and developed ecological niche models with Maxent. Interestingly, the climatic niches of all eight AIWs diverged significantly between the native and invasive ranges (the American continent and China). Furthermore, the AIWs showed larger climatic niche breadths in the invasive ranges than in the native ranges. Our results suggest that climatic niche shifts between native and invasive ranges occurred. Thus, the occurrence records of both native and invasive regions must be considered when modeling and predicting the spatial distributions of AIWs under current and future climate scenarios. Owing to high habitat suitability, AIWs were more likely to expand into regions of low latitude, and future climate change was predicted to result in a shift in the AIWs in Qinghai and Tibet (regions of higher altitude) as well as Heilongjiang, Jilin, Liaoning, Inner Mongolia, and Gansu (regions of higher latitude). Our results suggest that we need measures to prevent and control AIW expansion at the country-wide level.

  12. Habitat suitability-density relationship in an endangered woodland species: the case of the Blue Chaffinch (Fringilla polatzeki).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carrascal, Luis M; Moreno, Ángel C; Delgado, Alejandro; Suárez, Víctor; Trujillo, Domingo

    2017-01-01

    Understanding constraints to the distribution of threatened species may help to ascertain whether there are other suitable sectors for reducing the risks associated with species that are recorded in only one protected locality, and to inform about the suitability of other areas for reintroduction or translocation programs. We studied the Gran Canaria blue chaffinch ( Fringilla polatzeki ), a habitat specialist endemic of the Canary Islands restricted to the pine forest of Inagua, the only area where the species has been naturally present as a regular breeder in the last 25 years. A suitability distribution model using occurrences with demographic relevance (i.e., nest locations of successful breeding attempts analysed using boosted classification trees) was built considering orographic, climatic and habitat structure predictors. By means of a standardized survey program we monitored the yearly abundance of the species in 100 sectors since the declaration of Inagua as a Strict Nature Reserve in 1994. The variables with the highest relative importance in blue chaffinch habitat preferences were pine height, tree cover, altitude, and rainfall during the driest trimester (July-September). The observed local abundance of the blue chaffinch in Inagua (survey data) was significantly correlated with habitat suitability derived from modelling the location of successful nesting attempts (using linear and quantile regressions). The outcomes of the habitat suitability model were used to quantify the suitability of other natural, historic, pine forests of Gran Canaria. Tamadaba is the forest with most suitable woodland patches for the species. We estimated a population size of 195-430 blue chaffinches in Inagua since 2011 (95% CI), the smallest population size of a woodland passerine in the Western Palearctic. Habitat suitability obtained from modelling the location of successful breeding attempts is a good surrogate of the observed local abundance during the reproductive season

  13. An animal location-based habitat suitability model for bighorn sheep and wild horses in Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area and the Pryor Mountain Wild Horse Range, Montana, and Wyoming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wockner, Gary; Singer, Francis J.; Schoenecker, Kathryn A.

    2004-01-01

    The purpose of this habitat suitability model is to provide a tool that will help managers and researchers better manage bighorn sheep and wild horses in the Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area (BICA) and Pryor Mountain Wild Horse Range (PMWHR). A concern in the management of the Pryor Mountain wild horse population is whether or not the wild horses compete with bighorn sheep for available forage or available space. Two studies have been conducted that have shown no obvious, convincing competition between the two species. A study of diets and habitat-use of both species revealed substantial diet overlap only during some seasons, but there were considerable spatial and habitat separations between wild horses and bighorns during all seasons (Kissell and others, 1996). This empirical data was then used in a modeling exercise that predicted that neither the current (about 160 horses at the time of the analysis) nor larger numbers of wild horses on the area (e.g., about 200 horses) would result in reduced numbers or condition of bighorn sheep (Coughenour 1999). But competition is a very complex biological process to document. Bighorns might have already been spatially avoiding wild horses when these studies were conducted. A second concern for managers is that earlier studies suggest both species are not using many areas of the range that appear to be suitable (Gudorf and others, 1996; Kissell and others, 1996). A primary goal for the management of both species is to increase their numbers for purposes of genetic conservation and viability. The bighorn sheep population declined during the mid-1990’s from a peak of about 211 animals to ~ 100 animals at present. Absolute minimum goals for genetic viability in the bighorn sheep herd (genetic effective population size of N >50) suggest at least 150 animals should be present, while studies of persistence suggest populations of 250+ are e more likely to recover rapidly and persist should the population experience an

  14. Hydropower Production and Fish Habitat Suitability: Impact and Effectiveness of Environmental Flow Prescriptions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ceola, Serena; Pugliese, Alessio; Galeati, Giorgio; Castellarin, Attilio

    2017-04-01

    The anthropogenic alteration of the natural flow regime of a river for hydropower production can significantly modify the processes and functions associated with fluvial ecosystems. In order to preserve the fluvial habitat downstream of dams and diversion structures, environmental flows are commonly defined. Such environmental flows are generally computed from empirical methodologies, which are seldom based on site-specific studies, and may not be representative of local ecological and hydraulic conditions. Here we present the results of a quantitative analysis on the effectiveness of two alternative environmental flow scenarios prescribed in Central Italy (time-invariant experimental and empirically-based flow release versus time-variant hydrogeomorphologically-based flow release) and their impact on hydropower production and fish habitat suitability. The latter is examined by means of several models of habitat suitability curve, which is a well-known approach capable of analysing fluvial species preferences as a function of key eco-hydraulic features, such as water depth, flow velocity and river substrate. The results show an evident loss of hydropower production moving from the time-invariant experimental flow release to the hydrogeomorphological one (nearly 20% at the annual scale). Concerning the effects in terms of fish habitat suitability, our outcomes are less obvious, since they are species- and life stage-specific. The proposed analysis, which can be easily adapted to different riparian habitats and hydrological contexts, is a useful tool to guide the derivation of optimal water resource management strategies in order to ensure both hydropower production and fluvial ecosystem protection.

  15. Quantifying Florida Bay Habitat Suitability for Fishes and Invertebrates Under Climate Change Scenarios

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kearney, Kelly A.; Butler, Mark; Glazer, Robert; Kelble, Christopher R.; Serafy, Joseph E.; Stabenau, Erik

    2015-04-01

    The Florida Bay ecosystem supports a number of economically important ecosystem services, including several recreational fisheries, which may be affected by changing salinity and temperature due to climate change. In this paper, we use a combination of physical models and habitat suitability index models to quantify the effects of potential climate change scenarios on a variety of juvenile fish and lobster species in Florida Bay. The climate scenarios include alterations in sea level, evaporation and precipitation rates, coastal runoff, and water temperature. We find that the changes in habitat suitability vary in both magnitude and direction across the scenarios and species, but are on average small. Only one of the seven species we investigate ( Lagodon rhomboides, i.e., pinfish) sees a sizable decrease in optimal habitat under any of the scenarios. This suggests that the estuarine fauna of Florida Bay may not be as vulnerable to climate change as other components of the ecosystem, such as those in the marine/terrestrial ecotone. However, these models are relatively simplistic, looking only at single species effects of physical drivers without considering the many interspecific interactions that may play a key role in the adjustment of the ecosystem as a whole. More complex models that capture the mechanistic links between physics and biology, as well as the complex dynamics of the estuarine food web, may be necessary to further understand the potential effects of climate change on the Florida Bay ecosystem.

  16. Quantifying Florida Bay habitat suitability for fishes and invertebrates under climate change scenarios.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kearney, Kelly A; Butler, Mark; Glazer, Robert; Kelble, Christopher R; Serafy, Joseph E; Stabenau, Erik

    2015-04-01

    The Florida Bay ecosystem supports a number of economically important ecosystem services, including several recreational fisheries, which may be affected by changing salinity and temperature due to climate change. In this paper, we use a combination of physical models and habitat suitability index models to quantify the effects of potential climate change scenarios on a variety of juvenile fish and lobster species in Florida Bay. The climate scenarios include alterations in sea level, evaporation and precipitation rates, coastal runoff, and water temperature. We find that the changes in habitat suitability vary in both magnitude and direction across the scenarios and species, but are on average small. Only one of the seven species we investigate (Lagodon rhomboides, i.e., pinfish) sees a sizable decrease in optimal habitat under any of the scenarios. This suggests that the estuarine fauna of Florida Bay may not be as vulnerable to climate change as other components of the ecosystem, such as those in the marine/terrestrial ecotone. However, these models are relatively simplistic, looking only at single species effects of physical drivers without considering the many interspecific interactions that may play a key role in the adjustment of the ecosystem as a whole. More complex models that capture the mechanistic links between physics and biology, as well as the complex dynamics of the estuarine food web, may be necessary to further understand the potential effects of climate change on the Florida Bay ecosystem.

  17. 3-D habitat suitability of jack mackerel Trachurus murphyi in the Southeastern Pacific, a comprehensive study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bertrand, Arnaud; Habasque, Jérémie; Hattab, Tarek; Hintzen, Niels T.; Oliveros-Ramos, Ricardo; Gutiérrez, Mariano; Demarcq, Hervé; Gerlotto, François

    2016-08-01

    South Pacific jack mackerel, Trachurus murphyi, has an ocean-scale distribution, from the South American coastline to New Zealand and Tasmania. This fish, captured by Humans since the Holocene, is nowadays heavily exploited and its population has decreased substantially since the mid-1990s. The uncertainty associated to jack mackerel population structure currently hampers management. Several hypotheses have been proposed from a single population up to several discrete populations. Still no definitive answer was given. Determining how environmental conditions drive jack mackerel distribution can provide insights on its population structure. To do so, here we performed in three steps. First, we used satellite data to develop a statistical model of jack mackerel horizontal habitat suitability. Model predictions based on interaction between temperature and chlorophyll-a match the observed jack mackerel distribution, even during extreme El Niño event. Second, we studied the impact of oxygen and show that jack mackerel distribution and abundance is correlated to oxygen over a wide variety of scales and avoid low oxygen areas and periods. Third, on the basis of the above we built a conceptual 3D model of jack mackerel habitat in the Southeastern Pacific. We reveal the presence of a low suitable habitat along the Chilean and Peruvian coast, figuratively presenting a closed door caused by a gap in the horizontal habitat at ∼19-22°S and a shallow oxycline off south-centre Peru. This kind of situation likely occurs on a seasonal basis, in austral summer but also at longer temporal scales. A lack of exchanges at some periods/seasons partially isolate jack mackerel distributed off Peru. On the other hand the continuity in the habitat during most of the year explains why exchanges occur. We conclude that the more likely population structure for jack mackerel is a pelagic metapopulation.

  18. Potential impacts of climate change on habitat suitability for the Queensland fruit fly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sultana, Sabira; Baumgartner, John B; Dominiak, Bernard C; Royer, Jane E; Beaumont, Linda J

    2017-10-12

    Anthropogenic climate change is a major factor driving shifts in the distributions of pests and invasive species. The Queensland fruit fly, Bactrocera tryoni Froggatt (Qfly), is the most economically damaging insect pest of Australia's horticultural industry, and its management is a key priority for plant protection and biosecurity. Identifying the extent to which climate change may alter the distribution of suitable habitat for Qfly is important for the development and continuation of effective monitoring programs, phytosanitary measures, and management strategies. We used Maxent, a species distribution model, to map suitable habitat for Qfly under current climate, and six climate scenarios for 2030, 2050 and 2070. Our results highlight that south-western Australia, northern regions of the Northern Territory, eastern Queensland, and much of south-eastern Australia are currently suitable for Qfly. This includes southern Victoria and eastern Tasmania, which are currently free of breeding populations. There is substantial agreement across future climate scenarios that most areas currently suitable will remain so until at least 2070. Our projections provide an initial estimate of the potential exposure of Australia's horticultural industry to Qfly as climate changes, highlighting the need for long-term vigilance across southern Australia to prevent further range expansion of this species.

  19. Smartphone-based distributed data collection enables rapid assessment of shorebird habitat suitability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thieler, E. Robert; Zeigler, Sara; Winslow, Luke; Hines, Megan K.; Read, Jordan S.; Walker, Jordan I.

    2016-01-01

    Understanding and managing dynamic coastal landscapes for beach-dependent species requires biological and geological data across the range of relevant environments and habitats. It is difficult to acquire such information; data often have limited focus due to resource constraints, are collected by non-specialists, or lack observational uniformity. We developed an open-source smartphone application called iPlover that addresses these difficulties in collecting biogeomorphic information at piping plover (Charadrius melodus) nest sites on coastal beaches. This paper describes iPlover development and evaluates data quality and utility following two years of collection (n = 1799 data points over 1500 km of coast between Maine and North Carolina, USA). We found strong agreement between field user and expert assessments and high model skill when data were used for habitat suitability prediction. Methods used here to develop and deploy a distributed data collection system have broad applicability to interdisciplinary environmental monitoring and modeling.

  20. Assessment of suitable habitat for Phragmites australis (common reed) in the Great Lakes coastal zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlson Mazur, Martha L.; Kowalski, Kurt P.; Galbraith, David

    2014-01-01

    In the Laurentian Great Lakes, the invasive form of Phragmites australis (common reed) poses a threat to highly productive coastal wetlands and shorelines by forming impenetrable stands that outcompete native plants. Large, dominant stands can derail efforts to restore wetland ecosystems degraded by other stressors. To be proactive, landscape-level management of Phragmites requires information on the current spatial distribution of the species and a characterization of areas suitable for future colonization. Using a recent basin-scale map of this invasive plant’s distribution in the U.S. coastal zone of the Great Lakes, environmental data (e.g., soils, nutrients, disturbance, climate, topography), and climate predictions, we performed analyses of current and predicted suitable coastal habitat using boosted regression trees, a type of species distribution modeling. We also investigated differential influences of environmental variables in the upper lakes (Lakes Superior, Michigan, and Huron) and lower lakes (Lakes St. Clair, Erie, and Ontario). Basin-wide results showed that the coastal areas most vulnerable to Phragmites expansion were in close proximity to developed lands and had minimal topographic relief, poorly drained soils, and dense road networks. Elevated nutrients and proximity to agriculture also influenced the distribution of Phragmites. Climate predictions indicated an increase in suitable habitat in coastal Lakes Huron and Michigan in particular. The results of this study, combined with a publicly available online decision support tool, will enable resource managers and restoration practitioners to target and prioritize Phragmites control efforts in the Great Lakes coastal zone.

  1. Global decline in suitable habitat for Angiostrongylus ( = Parastrongylus) cantonensis: the role of climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    York, Emily M; Butler, Christopher J; Lord, Wayne D

    2014-01-01

    Climate change is implicated in the alteration of the ranges of species worldwide. Such shifts in species distributions may introduce parasites/pathogens, hosts, and vectors associated with disease to new areas. The parasite Angiostrongylus ( = Parastrongylus) cantonensis is an invasive species that causes eosinophilic meningitis in humans and neurological abnormalities in domestic/wild animals. Although native to southeastern Asia, A. cantonensis has now been reported from more than 30 countries worldwide. Given the health risks, it is important to describe areas with potentially favorable climate for the establishment of A. cantonensis, as well as areas where this pathogen might become established in the future. We used the program Maxent to develop an ecological niche model for A. cantonensis based on 86 localities obtained from published literature. We then modeled areas of potential A. cantonensis distribution as well as areas projected to have suitable climatic conditions under four Representative Concentration Pathways (RCP) scenarios by the 2050s and the 2070s. The best model contained three bioclimatic variables: mean diurnal temperature range, minimum temperature of coldest month and precipitation of warmest quarter. Potentially suitable habitat for A. cantonensis was located worldwide in tropical and subtropical regions. Under all climate change RCP scenarios, the center of the projected distribution shifted away from the equator at a rate of 68-152 km per decade. However, the extent of areas with highly suitable habitat (>50%) declined by 10.66-15.66% by the 2050s and 13.11-16.11% by the 2070s. These results conflict with previous studies, which have generally found that the prevalence of tropical pathogens will increase during the 21st century. Moreover, it is likely that A. cantonensis will continue to expand its current range in the near future due to introductions and host expansion, whereas climate change will reduce the total geographic area of

  2. Composite Habitat Suitability Index for Greater Sage-grouse in Nevada and northeastern California

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior — This raster represents a continuous surface of sage-grouse habitat suitability index (HSI) values for Nevada. HSIs were calculated for spring, summer, and winter...

  3. Bald eagle habitat suitability on Melton Hill Reservoir and the Clinch River

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Buehler, D.A. [Univ., of Knoxville, TN (United States)

    1994-09-01

    The area around Melton Hill Reservoir and sections of the Clinch River along the Oak Ridge Reservation (ORR) provide suitable habitat for bald eagles for both breeding and wintering activities. Primary limitations on habitat suitability appear to be human activity in aquatic habitats and along shoreline areas, and human development along shoreline areas. ORR provides the majority of the suitable habitat because shoreline development is very limited. Four eagle management strategies discussed for ORR include planning development away from high-quality habitats, allowing forest stands near water to mature, conducting timber stand improvement to foster growth and development in pines and hardwoods, and using introductions to foster the development of a breeding population. The primary objective of this project was to make a qualitative assessment of bald eagle habitat suitability along Melton Hill Reservoir and the Clinch River and in adjacent areas on the ORR, including the proposed Advanced Neutron Source site. This survey`s aim was to provide ORR managers with an indication of whether suitable habitat exists and, if so, where it occurs on ORR. This information should provide the basis for incorporating eagle management into the overall ORR land management plan.

  4. Habitat suitability index models: Cutthroat trout

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hickman, Terry J.; Raleigh, Robert F.

    1982-01-01

    Cutthroat trout, Salmo clarki, are a polytypic species consisting of several geographically distinct forms with a broad distribution and a great amount of genetic diversity (Hickman 1978; Behnke 1979). Behnke (1979) recognized 13 extant subspecies: Coastal cutthroat (S. c. clarki) in coastal streams from Prince William Sound, Alaska to the Eel Rlver in California; mountain cutthroat (~. ~. alpestris) in upper Columbia and F~Dser River drainages of British Columbia; west slope cutthroat (S. c. lewisi) in the upper Columbia, Salmon, Clearwater, South Saskatchewan and upper Missouri drainages of Montana and Idaho; an undescribed subspecies in the Alvord basin, Oregon; Lahonton cutthroat (S. c ..henshawi), Pauite cutthroat (S. c. seleniris), and an undescribed- subspecies in the Humboldt River drafnage of the Lahontan basin of Nevada and California; Yellowstone cutthroat (S. c. bouvieri) in the Yellowstone drainage of Wyoming and Montana and the Snake River drainage of Wyoming, Idaho, and Nevada; an undescribed subspecies (fine spotted) in the upper Snake River, Wyoming; Bonneville cutthroat (S. c. utah) in the Bonneville basin in Utah, Nevada, Idaho, and Wyoming; Colorado River cutthroat (~. ~. pleuriticus) in the Colorado River drainage in Wyoming, Utah, New Mexico, and Colorado; greenback cutthroat (S. c. stomias) in the South Platte and Arkansas River systems; and Rio Grande cutthroat (~. ~. virginalis) in the Rio Grande River drainage of Colorado and New Mexico. Many of these 13 subspecies are included on Federal or State endangered or threatened species lists.Temperature and chemical preferences, migration, and other ecological and life history attributes vary among cutthroat subspecies (Behnke 1979). Differences in growth rate (Carlander 1969; Scott and Crossman 1973; Behnke 1979) and food preferences have also been reported (Trojnar and Behnke 1974) between some subspecies.

  5. Himalayan ibex (Capra ibex sibirica habitat suitability and range resource dynamics in the Central Karakorum National Park, Pakistan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Garee Khan

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available The study investigates Himalayan ibex (Capra ibex sibirica and their range resource condition within the preferred habitat in the Central Karakoram National Park, Pakistan. We apply ecological niche factor analysis (ENFA using 110 ibex sighting data and 6 key biophysical variables describing the habitat conditions and produce habitat suitability and maps with GIS and statistical tool (BioMapper. The modeling results of specialization factor shows some limitation for ibex over the use of slope, elevation, vegetation types and ruggedness. The habitat area selection for the ibex is adjusted to the ibex friendly habitat available conditions. The model results predicted suitable habitat for ibex in certain places, where field observation was never recorded. The range resource dynamics depict a large area that comes under the alpine meadows has the highest seasonal productivity, assessed by remote sensing based fortnightly vegetation condition data of the last 11 years. These meadows are showing browning trend over the years, attributable to grazing practices or climate conditions. At lower elevation, there are limited areas with suitable dry steppes, which may cause stress on ibex, especially during winter.

  6. Suitability of Coastal Marshes as Whooping Crane Foraging Habitat in Southwest Louisiana, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, Sammy L.; Kang, Sung-Ryong

    2014-01-01

    Foraging habitat conditions (i.e., water depth, prey biomass, digestible energy density) can be a significant predictor of foraging habitat selection by wading birds. Potential foraging habitats of Whooping Cranes (Grus americana) using marshes include ponds and emergent marsh, but the potential prey and energy availability in these habitat types have rarely been studied. In this study, we estimated daily digestible energy density for Whooping Cranes in different marsh and microhabitat types (i.e., pond, flooded emergent marsh). Also, indicator metrics of foraging habitat suitability for Whooping Cranes were developed based on seasonal water depth, prey biomass, and digestible energy density. Seasonal water depth (cm), prey biomass (g wet weight m-2), and digestible energy density (kcal g-1m-2) ranged from 0.0 to 50.2 ± 2.8, 0.0 to 44.8 ± 22.3, and 0.0 to 31.0 ± 15.3, respectively. With the exception of freshwater emergent marsh in summer, all available habitats were capable of supporting one Whooping Crane per 0.1 ha per day. All habitat types in the marshes had relatively higher suitability in spring and summer than in fall and winter. Our study indicates that based on general energy availability, freshwater marshes in the region can support Whooping Cranes in a relatively small area, particularly in spring and summer. In actuality, the spatial density of ponds, the flood depth of the emergent marsh, and the habitat conditions (e.g., vegetation density) between adjacent suitable habitats will constrain suitable habitat and Whooping Crane numbers.

  7. Climate Change, Northern Birds of Conservation Concern and Matching the Hotspots of Habitat Suitability with the Reserve Network

    Science.gov (United States)

    Virkkala, Raimo; Heikkinen, Risto K.; Fronzek, Stefan; Leikola, Niko

    2013-01-01

    National reserve networks are one of the most important means of species conservation, but their efficiency may be diminished due to the projected climatic changes. Using bioclimatic envelope models and spatial data on habitats and conservation areas, we studied how efficient the reserve network will be in preserving 100 forest, mire, marshland, and alpine bird species of conservation concern in Finland in 2051–2080 under three different climate scenarios. The occurrences of the studied bird species were related to the amount of habitat preferred by each species in the different boreal zones. We employed a novel integrated habitat suitability index that takes into account both the species’ probability of occurrence from the bioclimatic models and the availability of suitable habitat. Using this suitability index, the distribution of the topmost 5% suitability squares (“hotspots”) in the four bird species groups in the period 1971–2000 and under the three scenarios were compared with the location of reserves with the highest amounts of the four habitats to study the efficiency of the network. In species of mires, marshlands, and Arctic mountains, a high proportion of protected habitat was included in the 5% hotspots in the scenarios in 2051–2080, showing that protected areas cover a high proportion of occurrences of bird species. In contrast, in forests in the southern and middle boreal zones, only a small proportion of the protected habitat was included in the 5% hotspots, indicating that the efficiency of the protected area network will be insufficient for forest birds in the future. In the northern boreal zone, the efficiency of the reserve network in forests was highly dependent on the strength of climate change varying between the scenarios. Overall, there is no single solution to preserving biodiversity in a changing climate, but several future pathways should be considered. PMID:23700420

  8. Anticipating knowledge to inform species management: predicting spatially explicit habitat suitability of a colonial vulture spreading its range.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patricia Mateo-Tomás

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The knowledge of both potential distribution and habitat suitability is fundamental in spreading species to inform in advance management and conservation planning. After a severe decline in the past decades, the griffon vulture (Gyps fulvus is now spreading its breeding range towards the northwest in Spain and Europe. Because of its key ecological function, anticipated spatial knowledge is required to inform appropriately both vulture and ecosystem management. METHODOLOGY/FINDINGS: Here we used maximum entropy (Maxent models to determine the habitat suitability of potential and current breeding distribution of the griffon vulture using presence-only data (N = 124 colonies in north-western Spain. The most relevant ecological factors shaping this habitat suitability were also identified. The resulting model had a high predictive performance and was able to predict species' historical distribution. 7.5% (approximately 1,850 km(2 of the study area resulted to be suitable breeding habitat, most of which (approximately 70% is already occupied by the species. Cliff availability and livestock density, especially of sheep and goats, around 10 km of the colonies were the fundamental factors determining breeding habitat suitability for this species. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Griffon vultures could still spread 50-60 km towards the west, increasing their breeding range in 1,782 km(2. According to our results, 7.22% of the area suitable for griffon vulture will be affected by wind farms, so our results could help to better plan wind farm locations. The approach here developed could be useful to inform management of reintroductions and recovery programmes currently being implemented for both the griffon vulture and other threatened vulture species.

  9. Anticipating knowledge to inform species management: predicting spatially explicit habitat suitability of a colonial vulture spreading its range.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mateo-Tomás, Patricia; Olea, Pedro P

    2010-08-25

    The knowledge of both potential distribution and habitat suitability is fundamental in spreading species to inform in advance management and conservation planning. After a severe decline in the past decades, the griffon vulture (Gyps fulvus) is now spreading its breeding range towards the northwest in Spain and Europe. Because of its key ecological function, anticipated spatial knowledge is required to inform appropriately both vulture and ecosystem management. Here we used maximum entropy (Maxent) models to determine the habitat suitability of potential and current breeding distribution of the griffon vulture using presence-only data (N = 124 colonies) in north-western Spain. The most relevant ecological factors shaping this habitat suitability were also identified. The resulting model had a high predictive performance and was able to predict species' historical distribution. 7.5% (approximately 1,850 km(2)) of the study area resulted to be suitable breeding habitat, most of which (approximately 70%) is already occupied by the species. Cliff availability and livestock density, especially of sheep and goats, around 10 km of the colonies were the fundamental factors determining breeding habitat suitability for this species. Griffon vultures could still spread 50-60 km towards the west, increasing their breeding range in 1,782 km(2). According to our results, 7.22% of the area suitable for griffon vulture will be affected by wind farms, so our results could help to better plan wind farm locations. The approach here developed could be useful to inform management of reintroductions and recovery programmes currently being implemented for both the griffon vulture and other threatened vulture species.

  10. Using population viability analysis, genomics, and habitat suitability to forecast future population patterns of Little Owl Athene noctua across Europe

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Line Holm; Sunde, Peter; Pellegrino, Irene

    2017-01-01

    fragmentation, turning once continuous populations into metapopulations. It is thus increasingly important to estimate both the number of individuals it takes to create a genetically viable population and the population trend. Here, population viability analysis and habitat suitability modeling were used......The agricultural scene has changed over the past decades, resulting in a declining population trend in many species. It is therefore important to determine the factors that the individual species depend on in order to understand their decline. The landscape changes have also resulted in habitat......,000 individuals, management actions resulting in exchange of individuals between populations or even countries are probably necessary to prevent losing habitat suitability analysis suggested Little Owl to be affected positively by increasing...

  11. Application and testing of a procedure to evaluate transferability of habitat suitability criteria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, Jeff A.; Bovee, Ken D.

    1993-01-01

    A procedure designed to test the transferability of habitat suitability criteria was evaluated in the Cache la Poudre River, Colorado. Habitat suitability criteria were developed for active adult and juvenile rainbow trout in the South Platte River, Colorado. These criteria were tested by comparing microhabitat use predicted from the criteria with observed microhabitat use by adult rainbow trout in the Cache la Poudre River. A one-sided X2 test, using counts of occupied and unoccupied cells in each suitability classification, was used to test for non-random selection for optimum habitat use over usable habitat and for suitable over unsuitable habitat. Criteria for adult rainbow trout were judged to be transferable to the Cache la Poudre River, but juvenile criteria (applied to adults) were not transferable. Random subsampling of occupied and unoccupied cells was conducted to determine the effect of sample size on the reliability of the test procedure. The incidence of type I and type II errors increased rapidly as the sample size was reduced below 55 occupied and 200 unoccupied cells. Recommended modifications to the procedure included the adoption of a systematic or randomized sampling design and direct measurement of microhabitat variables. With these modifications, the procedure is economical, simple and reliable. Use of the procedure as a quality assurance device in routine applications of the instream flow incremental methodology was encouraged.

  12. Two-dimensional physical habitat modeling of effects of habitat structures on urban stream restoration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dongkyun IM

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available River corridors, even if highly modified or degraded, still provide important habitats for numerous biological species, and carry high aesthetic and economic values. One of the keys to urban stream restoration is recovery and maintenance of ecological flows sufficient to sustain aquatic ecosystems. In this study, the Hongje Stream in the Seoul metropolitan area of Korea was selected for evaluating a physically-based habitat with and without habitat structures. The potential value of the aquatic habitat was evaluated by a weighted usable area (WUA using River2D, a two-dimensional hydraulic model. The habitat suitability for Zacco platypus in the Hongje Stream was simulated with and without habitat structures. The computed WUA values for the boulder, spur dike, and riffle increased by about 2%, 7%, and 131%, respectively, after their construction. Also, the three habitat structures, especially the riffle, can contribute to increasing hydraulic heterogeneity and enhancing habitat diversity.

  13. Using urban forest assessment tools to model bird habitat potential

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lerman, Susannah B.; Nislow, Keith H.; Nowak, David J.; DeStefano, Stephen; King, David I.; Jones-Farrand, D. Todd

    2014-01-01

    The alteration of forest cover and the replacement of native vegetation with buildings, roads, exotic vegetation, and other urban features pose one of the greatest threats to global biodiversity. As more land becomes slated for urban development, identifying effective urban forest wildlife management tools becomes paramount to ensure the urban forest provides habitat to sustain bird and other wildlife populations. The primary goal of this study was to integrate wildlife suitability indices to an existing national urban forest assessment tool, i-Tree. We quantified available habitat characteristics of urban forests for ten northeastern U.S. cities, and summarized bird habitat relationships from the literature in terms of variables that were represented in the i-Tree datasets. With these data, we generated habitat suitability equations for nine bird species representing a range of life history traits and conservation status that predicts the habitat suitability based on i-Tree data. We applied these equations to the urban forest datasets to calculate the overall habitat suitability for each city and the habitat suitability for different types of land-use (e.g., residential, commercial, parkland) for each bird species. The proposed habitat models will help guide wildlife managers, urban planners, and landscape designers who require specific information such as desirable habitat conditions within an urban management project to help improve the suitability of urban forests for birds.

  14. Habitat suitability of the Atlantic bluefin tuna by size class: An ecological niche approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Druon, Jean-Noël; Fromentin, Jean-Marc; Hanke, Alex R.; Arrizabalaga, Haritz; Damalas, Dimitrios; Tičina, Vjekoslav; Quílez-Badia, Gemma; Ramirez, Karina; Arregui, Igor; Tserpes, George; Reglero, Patricia; Deflorio, Michele; Oray, Isik; Saadet Karakulak, F.; Megalofonou, Persefoni; Ceyhan, Tevfik; Grubišić, Leon; MacKenzie, Brian R.; Lamkin, John; Afonso, Pedro; Addis, Piero

    2016-03-01

    An ecological niche modelling (ENM) approach was used to predict the potential feeding and spawning habitats of small (5-25 kg, only feeding) and large (>25 kg) Atlantic bluefin tuna (ABFT), Thunnus thynnus, in the Mediterranean Sea, the North Atlantic and the Gulf of Mexico. The ENM was built bridging knowledge on ecological traits of ABFT (e.g. temperature tolerance, mobility, feeding and spawning strategy) with patterns of selected environmental variables (chlorophyll-a fronts and concentration, sea surface current and temperature, sea surface height anomaly) that were identified using an extensive set of precisely geo-located presence data. The results highlight a wider temperature tolerance for larger fish allowing them to feed in the northern - high chlorophyll levels - latitudes up to the Norwegian Sea in the eastern Atlantic and to the Gulf of Saint Lawrence in the western basin. Permanent suitable feeding habitat for small ABFT was predicted to be mostly located in temperate latitudes in the North Atlantic and in the Mediterranean Sea, as well as in subtropical waters off north-west Africa, while summer potential habitat in the Gulf of Mexico was found to be unsuitable for both small and large ABFTs. Potential spawning grounds were found to occur in the Gulf of Mexico from March-April in the south-east to April-May in the north, while favourable conditions evolve in the Mediterranean Sea from mid-May in the eastern to mid-July in the western basin. Other secondary potential spawning grounds not supported by observations were predicted in the Azores area and off Morocco to Senegal during July and August when extrapolating the model settings from the Gulf of Mexico into the North Atlantic. The presence of large ABFT off Florida and the Bahamas in spring was not explained by the model as is, however the environmental variables other than the sea surface height anomaly appeared to be favourable for spawning in part of this area. Defining key spatial and

  15. Evaluation of Limiting Climatic Factors and Simulation of a Climatically Suitable Habitat for Chinese Sea Buckthorn.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Guoqing; Du, Sheng; Guo, Ke

    2015-01-01

    Chinese sea buckthorn (Hippophae rhamnoides subsp. sinensis) has considerable economic potential and plays an important role in reclamation and soil and water conservation. For scientific cultivation of this species across China, we identified the key climatic factors and explored climatically suitable habitat in order to maximize survival of Chinese sea buckthorn using MaxEnt and GIS tools, based on 98 occurrence records from herbarium and publications and 13 climatic factors from Bioclim, Holdridge life zone and Kria' index variables. Our simulation showed that the MaxEnt model performance was significantly better than random, with an average test AUC value of 0.93 with 10-fold cross validation. A jackknife test and the regularized gain change, which were applied to the training algorithm, showed that precipitation of the driest month (PDM), annual precipitation (AP), coldness index (CI) and annual range of temperature (ART) were the most influential climatic factors in limiting the distribution of Chinese sea buckthorn, which explained 70.1% of the variation. The predicted map showed that the core of climatically suitable habitat was distributed from the southwest to northwest of Gansu, Ningxia, Shaanxi and Shanxi provinces, where the most influential climate variables were PDM of 1.0-7.0 mm, AP of 344.0-1089.0 mm, CI of -47.7-0.0°C, and ART of 26.1-45.0°C. We conclude that the distribution patterns of Chinese sea buckthorn are related to the northwest winter monsoon, the southwest summer monsoon and the southeast summer monsoon systems in China.

  16. Evaluation of Limiting Climatic Factors and Simulation of a Climatically Suitable Habitat for Chinese Sea Buckthorn.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guoqing Li

    Full Text Available Chinese sea buckthorn (Hippophae rhamnoides subsp. sinensis has considerable economic potential and plays an important role in reclamation and soil and water conservation. For scientific cultivation of this species across China, we identified the key climatic factors and explored climatically suitable habitat in order to maximize survival of Chinese sea buckthorn using MaxEnt and GIS tools, based on 98 occurrence records from herbarium and publications and 13 climatic factors from Bioclim, Holdridge life zone and Kria' index variables. Our simulation showed that the MaxEnt model performance was significantly better than random, with an average test AUC value of 0.93 with 10-fold cross validation. A jackknife test and the regularized gain change, which were applied to the training algorithm, showed that precipitation of the driest month (PDM, annual precipitation (AP, coldness index (CI and annual range of temperature (ART were the most influential climatic factors in limiting the distribution of Chinese sea buckthorn, which explained 70.1% of the variation. The predicted map showed that the core of climatically suitable habitat was distributed from the southwest to northwest of Gansu, Ningxia, Shaanxi and Shanxi provinces, where the most influential climate variables were PDM of 1.0-7.0 mm, AP of 344.0-1089.0 mm, CI of -47.7-0.0°C, and ART of 26.1-45.0°C. We conclude that the distribution patterns of Chinese sea buckthorn are related to the northwest winter monsoon, the southwest summer monsoon and the southeast summer monsoon systems in China.

  17. Mapping habitat suitability for at-risk plants and its implications for restoration and reintroduction

    Science.gov (United States)

    E. Questad; J.R. Kellner; K. Kinney; S. Cordell; G.P. Asner; J. Thaxton; J. Diep; A. Uowolo; S. Brooks; N. Inman-Narahari; S. Evans; B. Tucker

    2014-01-01

    The conservation of species at risk of extinction requires data to support decisions at landscape to regional scales. There is a need for information that can assist with locating suitable habitats in fragmented and degraded landscapes to aid the reintroduction of at-risk plant species. In addition, desiccation and water stress can be significant barriers to the...

  18. Habitat Suitability analysis of Koklass (Pucrasia macrolopha) Pheasant in Churdhar Wildlife Sanctuary of Himachal Pradesh, India using Geospatial Technology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eliza, K.; Sarma, K.

    2014-12-01

    Pheasants are at the brink of destruction due to degradation of forests, environmental pollution, climatic changes and extensive hunting of wild floras and faunas.The problem is more acute in the developing countries where wildlife and biodiversity conservation are often less prioritized due to more pressing demands of food security and poverty alleviation. Koklass Pheasant (Pucrasia macrolopha) species is distributed from Afghanistan and Pakistan in the east along the Himalayas to southeastern Tibet, western China and southeastern Mongolia.This species is grouped under endangered species in Red Data Book of Zoological Survey of India and also classified as least concern species according to IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.Conservation biologists and managers need a range of both classical analyses and specific modern tools to face the increasing threats to biodiversity. Among these tools, habitat-suitability modeling has recently emerged as a relevant technique to assess global impacts to define wide conservation priorities.The present study is carried out using remote sensing satellite imagery and GIS modeling technique for assessing habitat suitability of Koklass Pheasants and finding out the habitat factors influencing the Koklass distribution in Churdhar Wildlife Sanctuary, India. Effective management and conservation of wildlife populations and their habitats largely depend on our ability to understand and predict species-habitat interactions. Different thematic maps viz., land use/cover, forest types, drainage buffer, multiple ring buffers of sighting locations and multiple ring buffers of roads have been prepared to support the objective of the study. The Weighted Overlay Analysis model is used for identifying different potential areas of habitat for this endangered species. The most suitable area for Koklass Pheasant within the Wildlife Sanctuary is found to be about 23.8 percent of the total area which is due to favourable habitat conditions for the

  19. Projections of suitable habitat for rare species under global warming scenarios.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ledig, F Thomas; Rehfeldt, Gerald E; Sáenz-Romero, Cuauhtémoc; Flores-López, Celestino

    2010-06-01

    Modeling the contemporary and future climate niche for rare plants is a major hurdle in conservation, yet such projections are necessary to prevent extinctions that may result from climate change. • We used recently developed spline climatic models and modified Random Forests statistical procedures to predict suitable habitats of three rare, endangered spruces of Mexico and a spruce of the southwestern USA. We used three general circulation models and two sets of carbon emission scenarios (optimistic and pessimistic) for future climates. • Our procedures predicted present occurrence perfectly. For the decades 2030, 2060, and 2090, the ranges of all taxa progressively decreased, to the point of transient disappearance for one species in the decade 2060 but reappearance in 2090. Contrary to intuition, habitat did not develop to the north for any of the Mexican taxa; rather, climate niches for two taxa re-materialized several hundred kilometers southward in the Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt. The climate niche for a third Mexican taxon shrank drastically, and its two mitotypes responded differently, one of the first demonstrations of the importance of intraspecific genetic variation in climate niches. The climate niche of the U.S. species shrank northward and upward in elevation. • The results are important for conservation of these species and are of general significance for conservation by assisted colonization. We conclude that our procedures for producing models and projecting the climate niches of Mexican spruces provide a way for handling other rare plants, which constitute the great bulk of the world's endangered and most vulnerable flora.

  20. Bridging the gap between habitat-modeling research and bird conservation with dynamic landscape and population models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frank R., III Thompson

    2009-01-01

    Habitat models are widely used in bird conservation planning to assess current habitat or populations and to evaluate management alternatives. These models include species-habitat matrix or database models, habitat suitability models, and statistical models that predict abundance. While extremely useful, these approaches have some limitations.

  1. Mapping the climatic suitable habitat of oriental arborvitae (Platycladus orientalis) for introduction and cultivation at a global scale

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Guoqing; Du, Sheng; Wen, Zhongming

    2016-07-01

    Oriental arborvitae (Platycladus orientalis) is an important afforestation and ornamental tree species, which is native in eastern Asian. Therefore, a global suitable habitat map for oriental arborvitae is urgently needed for global promotion and cultivation. Here, the potential habitat and climatic requirements of oriental arborvitae at global scale were simulated using herbariums data and 13 thermal-moisture variables as input data for maximum entropy model (MaxEnt). The simulation performance of MaxEnt is evaluated by ten-fold cross-validation and a jackknife procedure. Results show that the potential habitat and climate envelop of oriental arborvitae can be successfully simulated by MaxEnt at global scale, with a mean test AUC value of 0.93 and mean training AUC value of 0.95. Thermal factors play more important roles than moisture factors in controlling the distribution boundary of oriental arborvitae’s potential ranges. There are about 50 countries suitable for introduction and cultivation of oriental arborvitae with an area of 2.0 × 107 km2, which occupied 13.8% of land area on the earth. This unique study will provide valuable information and insights needed to identify new regions with climatically suitable habitats for cultivation and introduction of oriental arborvitae around the world.

  2. Guidelines for using the Delphi Technique to develop habitat suitability index curves

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crance, Johnie H.

    1987-01-01

    Habitat Suitability Index (SI) curves are one method of presenting species habitat suitability criteria. The curves are often used with the Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP) and are necessary components of the Instream Flow Incremental Methodology (IFIM) (Armour et al. 1984). Bovee (1986) described three categories of SI curves or habitat suitability criteria based on the procedures and data used to develop the criteria. Category I curves are based on professional judgment, with 1ittle or no empirical data. Both Category II (utilization criteria) and Category III (preference criteria) curves have as their source data collected at locations where target species are observed or collected. Having Category II and Category III curves for all species of concern would be ideal. In reality, no SI curves are available for many species, and SI curves that require intensive field sampling often cannot be developed under prevailing constraints on time and costs. One alternative under these circumstances is the development and interim use of SI curves based on expert opinion. The Delphi technique (Pill 1971; Delbecq et al. 1975; Linstone and Turoff 1975) is one method used for combining the knowledge and opinions of a group of experts. The purpose of this report is to describe how the Delphi technique may be used to develop expert-opinion-based SI curves.

  3. Pan-Arctic sea ice-algal chl a biomass and suitable habitat are largely underestimated for multiyear ice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lange, Benjamin A; Flores, Hauke; Michel, Christine; Beckers, Justin F; Bublitz, Anne; Casey, John Alec; Castellani, Giulia; Hatam, Ido; Reppchen, Anke; Rudolph, Svenja A; Haas, Christian

    2017-11-01

    There is mounting evidence that multiyear ice (MYI) is a unique component of the Arctic Ocean and may play a more important ecological role than previously assumed. This study improves our understanding of the potential of MYI as a suitable habitat for sea ice algae on a pan-Arctic scale. We sampled sea ice cores from MYI and first-year sea ice (FYI) within the Lincoln Sea during four consecutive spring seasons. This included four MYI hummocks with a mean chl a biomass of 2.0 mg/m(2) , a value significantly higher than FYI and MYI refrozen ponds. Our results support the hypothesis that MYI hummocks can host substantial ice-algal biomass and represent a reliable ice-algal habitat due to the (quasi-) permanent low-snow surface of these features. We identified an ice-algal habitat threshold value for calculated light transmittance of 0.014%. Ice classes and coverage of suitable ice-algal habitat were determined from snow and ice surveys. These ice classes and associated coverage of suitable habitat were applied to pan-Arctic CryoSat-2 snow and ice thickness data products. This habitat classification accounted for the variability of the snow and ice properties and showed an areal coverage of suitable ice-algal habitat within the MYI-covered region of 0.54 million km(2) (8.5% of total ice area). This is 27 times greater than the areal coverage of 0.02 million km(2) (0.3% of total ice area) determined using the conventional block-model classification, which assigns single-parameter values to each grid cell and does not account for subgrid cell variability. This emphasizes the importance of accounting for variable snow and ice conditions in all sea ice studies. Furthermore, our results indicate the loss of MYI will also mean the loss of reliable ice-algal habitat during spring when food is sparse and many organisms depend on ice-algae. © 2017 The Authors. Global Change Biology Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  4. Modeling Impacts of Climate Change on Giant Panda Habitat

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melissa Songer

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Giant pandas (Ailuropoda melanoleuca are one of the most widely recognized endangered species globally. Habitat loss and fragmentation are the main threats, and climate change could significantly impact giant panda survival. We integrated giant panda habitat information with general climate models (GCMs to predict future geographic distribution and fragmentation of giant panda habitat. Results support a major general prediction of climate change—a shift of habitats towards higher elevation and higher latitudes. Our models predict climate change could reduce giant panda habitat by nearly 60% over 70 years. New areas may become suitable outside the current geographic range but much of these areas is far from the current giant panda range and only 15% fall within the current protected area system. Long-term survival of giant pandas will require the creation of new protected areas that are likely to support suitable habitat even if the climate changes.

  5. Environmental predictors of habitat suitability and biogeographical range of Franciscana dolphins (Pontoporia blainvillei

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonatan J. Gomez

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to use species distribution models to estimate the effects of environmental variables on the habitat suitability of river dolphins Pontoporia blainvillei (franciscanas along their overall biogeographical distribution. Based on the literature, we selected six environmental variables to be included in the models; four climatic factors (surface sea temperature, salinity, turbidity and productivity and two biotic factors (prey availability and fishing effort. We determined that the biographic range is under the following limits: temperature less than 19°C, a salinity of 36 psu and a minimal probability of the occurrence of fish C. guatucupa of 0.297. In the discussion, we postulate hypotheses on the behavioural and physiological mechanisms that cause these associations between environmental predictors and Franciscanas distribution. There was a good fit between the distribution predicted by the species distribution model and the one proposed by the experts of the International Union for Conservation of Nature; however, our analysis failed to highlight the fundamental role of bycatch as the main threat to this dolphin species.

  6. Spatially explicit feedbacks between seagrass meadow structure, sediment and light: Habitat suitability for seagrass growth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carr, Joel; D'Odorico, Paul; McGlathery, Karen; Wiberg, Patricia L.

    2016-01-01

    In shallow coastal bays where nutrient loading and riverine inputs are low, turbidity, and the consequent light environment are controlled by resuspension of bed sediments due to wind-waves and tidal currents. High sediment resuspension and low light environments can limit benthic primary productivity; however, both currents and waves are affected by the presence of benthic plants such as seagrass. This feedback between the presence of benthic primary producers such as seagrass and the consequent light environment has been predicted to induce bistable dynamics locally. However, these vegetated areas influence a larger area than they footprint, including a barren adjacent downstream area which exhibits reduced shear stresses. Here we explore through modeling how the patchy structure of seagrass meadows on a landscape may affect sediment resuspension and the consequent light environment due to the presence of this sheltered region. Heterogeneous vegetation covers comprising a mosaic of randomly distributed patches were generated to investigate the effect of patch modified hydrodynamics. Actual cover of vegetation on the landscape was used to facilitate comparisons across landscape realizations. Hourly wave and current shear stresses on the landscape along with suspended sediment concentration and light attenuation characteristics were then calculated and spatially averaged to examine how actual cover and mean water depth affect the bulk sediment and light environment. The results indicate that an effective cover, which incorporates the sheltering area, has important controls on the distributions of shear stress, suspended sediment, light environment, and consequent seagrass habitat suitability. Interestingly, an optimal habitat occurs within a depth range where, if actual cover is reduced past some threshold, the bulk light environment would no longer favor seagrass growth.

  7. Suitability

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bokdam, J.; Braeckel, van A.

    2002-01-01

    The suitability of grazing, burning, mowing and cutting as tools for succession control in peatland was assessed and expressed on a scale from 0 - 1. All management tools are suitable, but their effects are conditional. The suitability depends on the targeted vegetation transition and on their

  8. Nevada and California Regional Sage-grouse Habitat Suitability Index (August 2014)

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior — This raster represents a continuous surface of sage-grouse habitat probability values for Nevada and California. These values are derived from modeling the resource...

  9. Potential sites for suitable coelacanth habitat using bathymetric data from the western Indian Ocean

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Leuci

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Bathymetry as a discriminatory tool for targeting suitable coelacanth habitats is explored. A regional bathymetry, garnered from pre-existing data sets, and geo-referenced bathymetric charts for the western Indian Ocean is collated and incorporated into a geographical information system (GIS. This allows the suitability of coelacanth habitation, based on criteria concerning depth and shelf morphology from known coelacanth habitats, to be interrogated. A best guess for further detailed exploration is provided, targeting northern Mozambique, between Olumbe and Port Amelia, and the Port St Johns–Port Shepstone stretch of coastline in South Africa. Sparse data prevent the identification of Tanzanian and Madagascan target sites, though these should not be ignored. Ultimately, the GIS is envisioned as a flexible tool within which other spatial data collected in these areas concerning coelacanths may be incorporated.

  10. Managing Environmental Flows for Impounded Rivers in Semi-Arid Regions- A Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) Approach for the Assessment of River Habitat for Salmonid Populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pai, H.; Sivakumaran, K.; Villamizar, S. R.; Flanagan, J.; Guo, Q.; Harmon, T. C.

    2013-12-01

    Balancing ecosystem health in water-scarce, agriculturally dominated river basins remains a challenge. In dry water years, maintaining conditions for restored and sustained indigenous fish populations (a frequently used indicator for ecosystem health) is particularly challenging. Competing human demands include urban and agricultural water supplies, hydropower, and flood control. In many semi-arid regions, increasing drought intensity and frequency under future climate scenarios will combine with population increases to water scarcity. The goal of this work is to better understand how reservoir releases affect fish habitat and overall river aquatic ecosystem quality. Models integrating a diverse array of physical and biological processes and system state are used to forecast the river ecosystem response to changing drivers. We propose a distributed parameter-based Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) approach for assessing fish habitat quality. Our river ecosystem HSI maps are based on a combination of the following: (1) In situ data describing stream flow and water quality conditions; (2) Spatial observations, including surveyed cross-sections, aerial imagery and digital elevation maps (DEM) of the river and its riparian corridor; and (3) Simulated spatially distributed water depths, flow velocities, and temperatures estimated from 1D and 2D river flow and temperature models (HEC-RAS and CE-QUAL-W2, respectively). With respect to (2), image processing schemes are used to classify and map key habitat features, namely riparian edge and shallow underwater vegetation. HSI maps can be modified temporally to address specific life cycle requirements of indicator fish species. Results are presented for several reaches associated with the San Joaquin River Restoration Project, focusing on several components of the Chinook salmon life cycle. HSI maps and interpretations are presented in the context of a range of prescribed reservoir release hydrographs linked to California water

  11. Potential impacts of climate change on habitat suitability for the Queensland fruit fly

    OpenAIRE

    Sultana, Sabira; Baumgartner, John B.; Dominiak, Bernard C.; Royer, Jane E.; Beaumont, Linda J.

    2017-01-01

    Anthropogenic climate change is a major factor driving shifts in the distributions of pests and invasive species. The Queensland fruit fly, Bactrocera tryoni Froggatt (Qfly), is the most economically damaging insect pest of Australia’s horticultural industry, and its management is a key priority for plant protection and biosecurity. Identifying the extent to which climate change may alter the distribution of suitable habitat for Qfly is important for the development and continuation of effect...

  12. Influence of discharge on fish habitat suitability curves in mountain watercourses in IFIM methodology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Macura Viliam

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available In this study, the quality of the aquatic habitats of mountain and piedmont streams was evaluated using the ‘Instream Flow Incremental Methodology (IFIM’ decision-making tool. The quality of habitats was interpreted from the behaviour of bioindicators in the form of habitat suitability curves (HSCs. From 1995 until the present, 59 different reaches of 43 mountain streams in Slovakia and 3 validation reaches were evaluated, and the results analysed. The aim of this study was to generalize the parameters of the HSCs for the brown trout. The generalized curves will be useful for water management planning. It is difficult and time-consuming to take hydrometrical and ichthyological measurements at different water levels. Therefore, we developed a methodology for modifying suitability curves based on an ichthyological survey during a low flow and a flow at which fish lose the ability to resist the flow velocity. The study provides the information how such curves can be modified for a wider flow range. In summary, this study shows that generalized HSCs provide representative data that can be used to support both the design of river restoration and the assessment of the impacts of the water use or of climate change on stream habitat quality.

  13. Present habitat suitability for Anopheles atroparvus (Diptera, Culicidae and its coincidence with former malaria areas in mainland Portugal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    César Capinha

    2009-05-01

    Full Text Available Malaria was a major health problem in the first half of the 20th Century in mainland Portugal. Nowadays, although the disease is no longer endemic, there is still the risk of future endemic infections due to the continuous occurrence of imported cases and the possibility of transmission in the country by Anopheles atroparvus Van Thiel, 1927. Since vector abundance constitute one of the foremost factors in malaria transmission, we have created several habitat suitability models to describe this vector species’ current distribution. Three different correlative models; namely (i a multilayer perceptron artificial neural network (MLP-ANN; (ii binary logistic regression (BLR; and (iii Mahalanobis distance were used to combine the species records with a set of five environmental predictors. Kappa coefficient values from k-fold cross-validation records showed that binary logistic regression produced the best predictions, while the other two models also produced acceptable results. Therefore, in order to reduce uncertainty, the three suitability models were combined. The resulting model identified high suitability for An. atroparvus in the majority of the country with exception of the northern and central coastal areas. Malaria distribution during the last endemic period in the country was also compared with the combined suitability model, and a high degree of spatial agreement was obtained (kappa = 0.62. It was concluded that habitat suitability for malaria vectors can constitute valuable information on the assessment of several spatial attributes of the disease. In addition, the results suggest that the spatial distribution of An. atroparvus in the country remains very similar to the one known about seven decades ago.

  14. Assessing the habitat suitability of agricultural landscapes for characteristic breeding bird guilds using landscape metrics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borges, Friederike; Glemnitz, Michael; Schultz, Alfred; Stachow, Ulrich

    2017-04-01

    Many of the processes behind the decline of farmland birds can be related to modifications in landscape structure (composition and configuration), which can partly be expressed quantitatively with measurable or computable indices, i.e. landscape metrics. This paper aims to identify statistical relationships between the occurrence of birds and the landscape structure. We present a method that combines two comprehensive procedures: the "landscape-centred approach" and "guild classification". Our study is based on more than 20,000 individual bird observations based on a 4-year bird monitoring approach in a typical agricultural area in the north-eastern German lowlands. Five characteristic bird guilds, each with three characteristic species, are defined for the typical habitat types of that area: farmland, grassland, hedgerow, forest and settlement. The suitability of each sample plot for each guild is indicated by the level of persistence (LOP) of occurrence of three respective species. Thus, the sample plots can be classified as "preferred" or "less preferred" depending on the lower and upper quartiles of the LOP values. The landscape structure is characterized by 16 different landscape metrics expressing various aspects of landscape composition and configuration. For each guild, the three landscape metrics with the strongest rank correlation with the LOP values and that are not mutually dependent were identified. For four of the bird guilds, the classification success was better than 80%, compared with only 66% for the grassland bird guild. A subset of six landscape metrics proved to be the most meaningful and sufficiently classified the sample areas with respect to bird guild suitability. In addition, derived logistic functions allowed the production of guild-specific habitat suitability maps for the whole landscape. The analytical results show that the proposed approach is appropriate to assess the habitat suitability of agricultural landscapes for characteristic

  15. Habitat hydraulic models - a tool for Danish stream quality assessment?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Olsen, Martin

    ) from 1995-2004 and the simulated WUA are correlated between years for the whole stream and between stretches in the stream to estimate the relation between the present measures of biological quality and the habitat hydraulic simulation. The applicability/utility of habitat hydraulic models in relation...... and hydromorphological and chemical characteristics has to be enlightened (EUROPA, 2005). This study links catchment hydrology, stream discharge and physical habitat in a small Danish stream, the stream Ledreborg, and discusses the utility of habitat hydraulic models in relation to the present criteria and methods used...... observations and "site-specific" habitat suitability indices (HSI) are constructed. "Site-specific" HSI's are compared to other HSI's for Danish streams (Søholm and Jensen, 2003) and general HSI's used in other habitat hydraulic modelling projects (Lund, 1996; Fjordback et al. 2002; Thorn and Conallin, 2004...

  16. Are mountain habitats becoming more suitable for generalist than cold-adapted lizards thermoregulation?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zaida Ortega

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Mountain lizards are highly vulnerable to climate change, and the continuous warming of their habitats could be seriously threatening their survival. We aim to compare the thermal ecology and microhabitat selection of a mountain lizard, Iberolacerta galani, and a widely distributed lizard, Podarcis bocagei, in a montane area. Both species are currently in close syntopy in the study area, at 1,400 m above the sea level. We determined the precision, accuracy and effectiveness of thermoregulation, and the thermal quality of habitat for both species. We also compared the selection of thermal microhabitats between both species. Results show that I. galani is a cold-adapted thermal specialist with a preferred temperature range of 27.9–29.7 °C, while P. bocagei would be a thermal generalist, with a broader and higher preferred temperature range (30.1–34.5 °C. In addition, I. galani selects rocky substrates while P. bocagei selects warmer soil and leaf litter substrates. The thermal quality of the habitat is higher for P. bocagei than for I. galani. Finally, P. bocagei achieves a significantly higher effectiveness of thermoregulation (0.87 than I. galani (0.80. Therefore, these mountain habitat conditions seem currently more suitable for performance of thermophilic generalist lizards than for cold-specialist lizards.

  17. Instream Physical Habitat Modelling Types

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Conallin, John; Boegh, Eva; Krogsgaard, Jørgen

    2010-01-01

    The introduction of the EU Water Framework Directive (WFD) is providing member state water resource managers with significant challenges in relation to meeting the deadline for 'Good Ecological Status' by 2015. Overall, instream physical habitat modelling approaches have advantages and disadvanta......The introduction of the EU Water Framework Directive (WFD) is providing member state water resource managers with significant challenges in relation to meeting the deadline for 'Good Ecological Status' by 2015. Overall, instream physical habitat modelling approaches have advantages...... physical habitat models. In parametric and non-parametric regression models, model assumptions are often not satisfied and the models are difficult to transfer to other regions. Research-based methods such as the artificial neural networks and individual-based modelling have promising potential as water......-friendly and have flexible data needs. They can easily be implemented in new regions using expert information or different types of local data. Furthermore, they are easily presentable to stakeholders and have the potential to be applied over large spatial scales. Integral care must be taken in the use...

  18. Modelling riverine habitat for robust redhorse: assessment for reintroduction of an imperilled species

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fisk, J. M.; Kwak, Thomas J.; Heise, R. J.

    2014-01-01

    A critical component of a species reintroduction is assessment of contemporary habitat suitability. The robust redhorse, Moxostoma robustum (Cope), is an imperilled catostomid that occupies a restricted range in the south-eastern USA. A remnant population persists downstream of Blewett Falls Dam, the terminal dam in the Pee Dee River, North Carolina. Reintroduction upstream of Blewett Falls Dam may promote long-term survival of this population. Tillery Dam is the next hydroelectric facility upstream, which includes a 30 rkm lotic reach. Habitat suitability indices developed in the Pee Dee River were applied to model suitable habitat for proposed minimum flows downstream of Tillery Dam. Modelling results indicate that the Tillery reach provides suitable robust redhorse habitat, with spawning habitat more abundant than non-spawning habitat. Sensitivity analyses suggested that suitable water depth and substrate were limiting physical habitat variables. These results can inform decisions on flow regulation and guide planning for reintroduction of the robust redhorse and other species.

  19. Projecting the Range Shifts in Climatically Suitable Habitat for Chinese Sea Buckthorn under Climate Change Scenarios

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jinghua Huang

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Understanding the impact of climate change on range shifts in climatically suitable habitats of tree species is important for national afforestation planning, which can enhance the adaptation of tree plantation to climate change through movement of tree to follow suitable climatic conditions. Here, we overlap the current and future climate-related ranges of Chinese sea buckthorn (Hippophae rhamnoides subsp. sinensis, an important tree used for afforestation in China, to estimate the range shift in three geographic dimensions (latitude, longitude and elevation between 2000 and 2070, which are projected by the maximum entropy algorithm (MaxEnt under current climate conditions and four climate change scenarios (RCP2.6, RCP4.5, RCP6.0, and RCP8.5. Our results show that the performance of the MaxEnt is highly accurate, with test AUC (area under the receiver operating characteristic curve value of 0.91, Kappa value of 0.83 and predicted accuracy of 92%. About 10.7% area of land in China is climatically suitable for Chinese sea buckthorn plantation. Low representative concentration paths will have more effect on loss of climatic range and less effect on expansion of climatic range for Chinese sea buckthorn, while the impacts of high representative concentration path is the opposite. The centroids of climatic ranges will shift westward or northwestward at the rate of 10.4–22 km per decade, and the centroids of altitude will shift upward at the rate of 43–128 m per decade. The expansion area of climatically suitable habitat, covering 2.6–5.2 × 105 km2, is expected to be mainly located in parts of Qinghai, Ningxia, Gansu, Sichuan, Liaoning, and Jilin provinces; these areas should be monitored for planting of Chinese sea buckthorn in the future.

  20. Habitat suitability mapping of Anopheles darlingi in the surroundings of the Manso hydropower plant reservoir, Mato Grosso, Central Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miyazaki Rosina D

    2007-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Hydropower plants provide more than 78 % of Brazil's electricity generation, but the country's reservoirs are potential new habitats for main vectors of malaria. In a case study in the surroundings of the Manso hydropower plant in Mato Grosso state, Central Brazil, habitat suitability of Anopheles darlingi was studied. Habitat profile was characterized by collecting environmental data. Remote sensing and GIS techniques were applied to extract additional spatial layers of land use, distance maps, and relief characteristics for spatial model building. Results Logistic regression analysis and ROC curves indicate significant relationships between the environment and presence of An. darlingi. Probabilities of presence strongly vary as a function of land cover and distance from the lake shoreline. Vector presence was associated with spatial proximity to reservoir and semi-deciduous forests followed by Cerrado woodland. Vector absence was associated with open vegetation formations such as grasslands and agricultural areas. We suppose that non-significant differences of vector incidences between rainy and dry seasons are associated with the availability of anthropogenic breeding habitat of the reservoir throughout the year. Conclusion Satellite image classification and multitemporal shoreline simulations through DEM-based GIS-analyses consist in a valuable tool for spatial modeling of A. darlingi habitats in the studied hydropower reservoir area. Vector presence is significantly increased in forested areas near reservoirs in bays protected from wind and wave action. Construction of new reservoirs under the tropical, sub-humid climatic conditions should therefore be accompanied by entomologic studies to predict the risk of malaria epidemics.

  1. Downscaling Pest Risk Analyses: Identifying Current and Future Potentially Suitable Habitats for Parthenium hysterophorus with Particular Reference to Europe and North Africa.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Darren J Kriticos

    Full Text Available Pest Risk Assessments (PRAs routinely employ climatic niche models to identify endangered areas. Typically, these models consider only climatic factors, ignoring the 'Swiss Cheese' nature of species ranges due to the interplay of climatic and habitat factors. As part of a PRA conducted for the European and Mediterranean Plant Protection Organization, we developed a climatic niche model for Parthenium hysterophorus, explicitly including the effects of irrigation where it was known to be practiced. We then downscaled the climatic risk model using two different methods to identify the suitable habitat types: expert opinion (following the EPPO PRA guidelines and inferred from the global spatial distribution. The PRA revealed a substantial risk to the EPPO region and Central and Western Africa, highlighting the desirability of avoiding an invasion by P. hysterophorus. We also consider the effects of climate change on the modelled risks. The climate change scenario indicated the risk of substantial further spread of P. hysterophorus in temperate northern hemisphere regions (North America, Europe and the northern Middle East, and also high elevation equatorial regions (Western Brazil, Central Africa, and South East Asia if minimum temperatures increase substantially. Downscaling the climate model using habitat factors resulted in substantial (approximately 22-53% reductions in the areas estimated to be endangered. Applying expert assessments as to suitable habitat classes resulted in the greatest reduction in the estimated endangered area, whereas inferring suitable habitats factors from distribution data identified more land use classes and a larger endangered area. Despite some scaling issues with using a globally conformal Land Use Systems dataset, the inferential downscaling method shows promise as a routine addition to the PRA toolkit, as either a direct model component, or simply as a means of better informing an expert assessment of the suitable

  2. Downscaling Pest Risk Analyses: Identifying Current and Future Potentially Suitable Habitats for Parthenium hysterophorus with Particular Reference to Europe and North Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kriticos, Darren J.; Brunel, Sarah; Ota, Noboru; Fried, Guillaume; Oude Lansink, Alfons G. J. M.; Panetta, F. Dane; Prasad, T. V. Ramachandra; Shabbir, Asad; Yaacoby, Tuvia

    2015-01-01

    Pest Risk Assessments (PRAs) routinely employ climatic niche models to identify endangered areas. Typically, these models consider only climatic factors, ignoring the ‘Swiss Cheese’ nature of species ranges due to the interplay of climatic and habitat factors. As part of a PRA conducted for the European and Mediterranean Plant Protection Organization, we developed a climatic niche model for Parthenium hysterophorus, explicitly including the effects of irrigation where it was known to be practiced. We then downscaled the climatic risk model using two different methods to identify the suitable habitat types: expert opinion (following the EPPO PRA guidelines) and inferred from the global spatial distribution. The PRA revealed a substantial risk to the EPPO region and Central and Western Africa, highlighting the desirability of avoiding an invasion by P. hysterophorus. We also consider the effects of climate change on the modelled risks. The climate change scenario indicated the risk of substantial further spread of P. hysterophorus in temperate northern hemisphere regions (North America, Europe and the northern Middle East), and also high elevation equatorial regions (Western Brazil, Central Africa, and South East Asia) if minimum temperatures increase substantially. Downscaling the climate model using habitat factors resulted in substantial (approximately 22–53%) reductions in the areas estimated to be endangered. Applying expert assessments as to suitable habitat classes resulted in the greatest reduction in the estimated endangered area, whereas inferring suitable habitats factors from distribution data identified more land use classes and a larger endangered area. Despite some scaling issues with using a globally conformal Land Use Systems dataset, the inferential downscaling method shows promise as a routine addition to the PRA toolkit, as either a direct model component, or simply as a means of better informing an expert assessment of the suitable habitat

  3. Variability of Suitable Habitat of Western Winter-Spring Cohort for Neon Flying Squid in the Northwest Pacific under Anomalous Environments.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wei Yu

    Full Text Available We developed a habitat suitability index (HSI model to evaluate the variability of suitable habitat for neon flying squid (Ommastrephes bartramii under anomalous environments in the Northwest Pacific Ocean. Commercial fisheries data from the Chinese squid-jigging vessels on the traditional fishing ground bounded by 35°-45°N and 150°-175°E from July to November during 1998-2009 were used for analyses, as well as the environmental variables including sea surface temperature (SST, chlorophyll-a (Chl-a concentration, sea surface height anomaly (SSHA and sea surface salinity (SSS. Two empirical HSI models (arithmetic mean model, AMM; geometric mean model, GMM were established according to the frequency distribution of fishing efforts. The AMM model was found to perform better than the GMM model. The AMM-based HSI model was further validated by the fishery and environmental data in 2010. The predicted HSI values in 1998 (high catch, 2008 (average catch and 2009 (low catch indicated that the squid habitat quality was strongly associated with the ENSO-induced variability in the oceanic conditions on the fishing ground. The La Niña events in 1998 tended to yield warm SST and favorable range of Chl-a concentration and SSHA, resulting in high-quality habitats for O. bartramii. While the fishing ground in the El Niño year of 2009 experienced anomalous cool waters and unfavorable range of Chl-a concentration and SSHA, leading to relatively low-quality squid habitats. Our findings suggest that the La Niña event in 1998 tended to result in more favorable habitats for O. bartramii in the Northwest Pacific with the gravity centers of fishing efforts falling within the defined suitable habitat and yielding high squid catch; whereas the El Niño event in 2009 yielded less favorable habitat areas with the fishing effort distribution mismatching the suitable habitat and a dramatic decline of the catch of O. bartramii. This study might provide some potentially

  4. Variability of Suitable Habitat of Western Winter-Spring Cohort for Neon Flying Squid in the Northwest Pacific under Anomalous Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Wei; Chen, Xinjun; Yi, Qian; Chen, Yong; Zhang, Yang

    2015-01-01

    We developed a habitat suitability index (HSI) model to evaluate the variability of suitable habitat for neon flying squid (Ommastrephes bartramii) under anomalous environments in the Northwest Pacific Ocean. Commercial fisheries data from the Chinese squid-jigging vessels on the traditional fishing ground bounded by 35°-45°N and 150°-175°E from July to November during 1998-2009 were used for analyses, as well as the environmental variables including sea surface temperature (SST), chlorophyll-a (Chl-a) concentration, sea surface height anomaly (SSHA) and sea surface salinity (SSS). Two empirical HSI models (arithmetic mean model, AMM; geometric mean model, GMM) were established according to the frequency distribution of fishing efforts. The AMM model was found to perform better than the GMM model. The AMM-based HSI model was further validated by the fishery and environmental data in 2010. The predicted HSI values in 1998 (high catch), 2008 (average catch) and 2009 (low catch) indicated that the squid habitat quality was strongly associated with the ENSO-induced variability in the oceanic conditions on the fishing ground. The La Niña events in 1998 tended to yield warm SST and favorable range of Chl-a concentration and SSHA, resulting in high-quality habitats for O. bartramii. While the fishing ground in the El Niño year of 2009 experienced anomalous cool waters and unfavorable range of Chl-a concentration and SSHA, leading to relatively low-quality squid habitats. Our findings suggest that the La Niña event in 1998 tended to result in more favorable habitats for O. bartramii in the Northwest Pacific with the gravity centers of fishing efforts falling within the defined suitable habitat and yielding high squid catch; whereas the El Niño event in 2009 yielded less favorable habitat areas with the fishing effort distribution mismatching the suitable habitat and a dramatic decline of the catch of O. bartramii. This study might provide some potentially valuable

  5. Modelling climate change impacts on stream habitat conditions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Boegh, Eva; Conallin, John; Karthikeyan, Matheswaran

    Impact from groundwater abstraction on freshwater resources and ecosystems is an issue of sincere concern in Denmark and many other countries worldwide. In addition, climate change projections add complexity to the existing conflict between water demands to satisfy human needs and water demands...... forest land use can in some cases restore water temperatures to tolerable levels. The sensitivity to climate change impacts on flow and temperature is evaluated and discussed......., climate impacts on stream ecological conditions were quantified by combining a heat and mass stream flow with a habitat suitability modelling approach. Habitat suitability indices were developed for stream velocity, water depth, water temperature and substrate. Generally, water depth was found...

  6. Using maximum entropy to predict suitable habitat for the endangered dwarf wedgemussel in the Maryland Coastal Plain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, Cara; Hilderbrand, Robert H.

    2017-01-01

    Species distribution modelling can be useful for the conservation of rare and endangered species. Freshwater mussel declines have thinned species ranges producing spatially fragmented distributions across large areas. Spatial fragmentation in combination with a complex life history and heterogeneous environment makes predictive modelling difficult.A machine learning approach (maximum entropy) was used to model occurrences and suitable habitat for the federally endangered dwarf wedgemussel, Alasmidonta heterodon, in Maryland's Coastal Plain catchments. Landscape-scale predictors (e.g. land cover, land use, soil characteristics, geology, flow characteristics, and climate) were used to predict the suitability of individual stream segments for A. heterodon.The best model contained variables at three scales: minimum elevation (segment scale), percentage Tertiary deposits, low intensity development, and woody wetlands (sub-catchment), and percentage low intensity development, pasture/hay agriculture, and average depth to the water table (catchment). Despite a very small sample size owing to the rarity of A. heterodon, cross-validated prediction accuracy was 91%.Most predicted suitable segments occur in catchments not known to contain A. heterodon, which provides opportunities for new discoveries or population restoration. These model predictions can guide surveys toward the streams with the best chance of containing the species or, alternatively, away from those streams with little chance of containing A. heterodon.Developed reaches had low predicted suitability for A. heterodon in the Coastal Plain. Urban and exurban sprawl continues to modify stream ecosystems in the region, underscoring the need to preserve existing populations and to discover and protect new populations.

  7. Calcareous Bio-Concretions in the Northern Adriatic Sea: Habitat Types, Environmental Factors that Influence Habitat Distributions, and Predictive Modeling.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Annalisa Falace

    Full Text Available Habitat classifications provide guidelines for mapping and comparing marine resources across geographic regions. Calcareous bio-concretions and their associated biota have not been exhaustively categorized. Furthermore, for management and conservation purposes, species and habitat mapping is critical. Recently, several developments have occurred in the field of predictive habitat modeling, and multiple methods are available. In this study, we defined the habitats constituting northern Adriatic biogenic reefs and created a predictive habitat distribution model. We used an updated dataset of the epibenthic assemblages to define the habitats, which we verified using the fuzzy k-means (FKM clustering method. Redundancy analysis was employed to model the relationships between the environmental descriptors and the FKM membership grades. Predictive modelling was carried out to map habitats across the basin. Habitat A (opportunistic macroalgae, encrusting Porifera, bioeroders characterizes reefs closest to the coastline, which are affected by coastal currents and river inputs. Habitat B is distinguished by massive Porifera, erect Tunicata, and non-calcareous encrusting algae (Peyssonnelia spp.. Habitat C (non-articulated coralline, Polycitor adriaticus is predicted in deeper areas. The onshore-offshore gradient explains the variability of the assemblages because of the influence of coastal freshwater, which is the main driver of nutrient dynamics. This model supports the interpretation of Habitat A and C as the extremes of a gradient that characterizes the epibenthic assemblages, while Habitat B demonstrates intermediate characteristics. Areas of transition are a natural feature of the marine environment and may include a mixture of habitats and species. The habitats proposed are easy to identify in the field, are related to different environmental features, and may be suitable for application in studies focused on other geographic areas. The habitat

  8. The role of 3D-hydraulics in habitat modelling of hydropeaking events.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pisaturo, Giuseppe Roberto; Righetti, Maurizio; Dumbser, Michael; Noack, Markus; Schneider, Matthias; Cavedon, Valentina

    2017-01-01

    One way to study ecological implications induced by hydropeaking represents the coupling of hydrodynamic models with habitat suitability models, in which hydrodynamic parameters are typically used to describe the physical habitat of indicator species. This article discusses the differences in habitat suitability assessment between 2D and 3D CFD modelling as input for the habitat simulation tool CASiMiR. In the first part of the article, the accuracy of the hydraulic model is evaluated by comparing the model results with laboratory (model of a laboratory channel with erodible bed) and field measurements (Valsura River, Bolzano, Italy). In the second part, the habitat suitability for the Valsura River case study (affected by hydropeaking), is analyzed comparing different approaches for the reconstruction of the velocity field (depth-averaged velocities from 2D modelling, bottom velocity field reconstruction with log-law approach from 2D modelling and bottom velocity field from 3D modelling). The results show that the habitat suitability index (HSI) using 2D or 3D hydrodynamic models can be significantly different. These differences can be ascribed to a higher capability to depict the features of the flow field with highly variable and heterogeneous boundary conditions and to the possibility to simulate the near bed hydrodynamic parameters, which are relevant for certain target species. In particular, the HSI-values using 3D hydraulics lead to larger areas of highly suitable habitats compared to 2D simulations. Moreover, considering the entire flow range of hydropeaking events, the habitat simulations with bottom flow velocities from 3D modelling provide suitable habitats over the entire flow range representing the availability of stable suitable habitats, while the habitat availability of 2D modelled flow velocity is continuously decreasing with increasing flow rates. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Habitat classification modelling with incomplete data: Pushing the habitat envelope

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phoebe L. Zarnetske; Thomas C. Edwards; Gretchen G. Moisen

    2007-01-01

    Habitat classification models (HCMs) are invaluable tools for species conservation, land-use planning, reserve design, and metapopulation assessments, particularly at broad spatial scales. However, species occurrence data are often lacking and typically limited to presence points at broad scales. This lack of absence data precludes the use of many statistical...

  10. Coupling habitat suitability and ecosystem health with AEHRA to estimate E-flows under intensive human activities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, C. S.; Yang, S. T.; Zhang, H. T.; Liu, C. M.; Sun, Y.; Yang, Z. Y.; Zhang, Y.; Dong, B. E.; Lim, R. P.

    2017-08-01

    Sustaining adequate environmental flows (e-flows) is a key principle for maintaining river biodiversity and ecosystem health, and for supporting sustainable water resource management in basins under intensive human activities. But few methods could correctly relate river health to e-flows assessment at the catchment scale when they are applied to rivers highly impacted by human activities. An effective method is presented in this study to closely link river health to e-flows assessment for rivers at the catchment scale. Key fish species, as indicators of ecosystem health, were selected by using the foodweb model. A multi-species-based habitat suitability model (MHSI) was improved, and coupled with dominance of the key fish species as well as the Index of Biological Integrity (IBI) to enhance its accuracy in determining the fish-preferred key hydrologic habitat variables related to ecosystem health. Taking 5964 fish samples and concurrent hydrological habitat variables as the basis, the combination of key variables of flow-velocity and water-depth were determined and used to drive the Adapted Ecological Hydraulic Radius Approach (AEHRA) to study e-flows in a Chinese urban river impacted by intensive human activities. Results showed that upstream urbanization resulted in abnormal river-course geomorphology and consequently abnormal e-flows under intensive human activities. Selection of key species based on the foodweb and trophic levels of aquatic ecosystems can reflect a comprehensive requirement on e-flows of the whole aquatic ecosystem, which greatly increases its potential to be used as a guidance tool for rehabilitation of degraded ecosystems at large spatial scales. These findings have significant ramifications for catchment e-flows assessment under intensive human activities and for river ecohealth restoration in such rivers globally.

  11. Seasonal variation in coastal marine habitat use by the European shag: Insights from fine scale habitat selection modeling and diet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michelot, Candice; Pinaud, David; Fortin, Matthieu; Maes, Philippe; Callard, Benjamin; Leicher, Marine; Barbraud, Christophe

    2017-07-01

    Studies of habitat selection by higher trophic level species are necessary for using top predator species as indicators of ecosystem functioning. However, contrary to terrestrial ecosystems, few habitat selection studies have been conducted at a fine scale for coastal marine top predator species, and fewer have coupled diet data with habitat selection modeling to highlight a link between prey selection and habitat use. The aim of this study was to characterize spatially and oceanographically, at a fine scale, the habitats used by the European Shag Phalacrocorax aristotelis in the Special Protection Area (SPA) of Houat-Hœdic in the Mor Braz Bay during its foraging activity. Habitat selection models were built using in situ observation data of foraging shags (transect sampling) and spatially explicit environmental data to characterize marine benthic habitats. Observations were first adjusted for detectability biases and shag abundance was subsequently spatialized. The influence of habitat variables on shag abundance was tested using Generalized Linear Models (GLMs). Diet data were finally confronted to habitat selection models. Results showed that European shags breeding in the Mor Braz Bay changed foraging habitats according to the season and to the different environmental and energetic constraints. The proportion of the main preys also varied seasonally. Rocky and coarse sand habitats were clearly preferred compared to fine or muddy sand habitats. Shags appeared to be more selective in their foraging habitats during the breeding period and the rearing of chicks, using essentially rocky areas close to the colony and consuming preferentially fish from the Labridae family and three other fish families in lower proportions. During the post-breeding period shags used a broader range of habitats and mainly consumed Gadidae. Thus, European shags seem to adjust their feeding strategy to minimize energetic costs, to avoid intra-specific competition and to maximize access

  12. Diet, abundance and distribution as indices of turbot ( Psetta maxima L.) release habitat suitability

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sparrevohn, Claus Reedtz; Støttrup, Josianne

    2008-01-01

    , natural abundance, and depth distribution within the habitats. A marked difference was found among habitats in the timing of the diet change from the suboptimal exoskeleton carrying prey items such as crustaceans to fish. The habitat where the wild turbot had the lowest occurrence of fish in their diet...

  13. Modeling and Validation of Environmental Suitability for Schistosomiasis Transmission Using Remote Sensing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walz, Yvonne; Wegmann, Martin; Dech, Stefan; Vounatsou, Penelope; Poda, Jean-Noël; N'Goran, Eliézer K; Utzinger, Jürg; Raso, Giovanna

    2015-11-01

    Schistosomiasis is the most widespread water-based disease in sub-Saharan Africa. Transmission is governed by the spatial distribution of specific freshwater snails that act as intermediate hosts and human water contact patterns. Remote sensing data have been utilized for spatially explicit risk profiling of schistosomiasis. We investigated the potential of remote sensing to characterize habitat conditions of parasite and intermediate host snails and discuss the relevance for public health. We employed high-resolution remote sensing data, environmental field measurements, and ecological data to model environmental suitability for schistosomiasis-related parasite and snail species. The model was developed for Burkina Faso using a habitat suitability index (HSI). The plausibility of remote sensing habitat variables was validated using field measurements. The established model was transferred to different ecological settings in Côte d'Ivoire and validated against readily available survey data from school-aged children. Environmental suitability for schistosomiasis transmission was spatially delineated and quantified by seven habitat variables derived from remote sensing data. The strengths and weaknesses highlighted by the plausibility analysis showed that temporal dynamic water and vegetation measures were particularly useful to model parasite and snail habitat suitability, whereas the measurement of water surface temperature and topographic variables did not perform appropriately. The transferability of the model showed significant relations between the HSI and infection prevalence in study sites of Côte d'Ivoire. A predictive map of environmental suitability for schistosomiasis transmission can support measures to gain and sustain control. This is particularly relevant as emphasis is shifting from morbidity control to interrupting transmission. Further validation of our mechanistic model needs to be complemented by field data of parasite- and snail

  14. Modeling and Validation of Environmental Suitability for Schistosomiasis Transmission Using Remote Sensing.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yvonne Walz

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Schistosomiasis is the most widespread water-based disease in sub-Saharan Africa. Transmission is governed by the spatial distribution of specific freshwater snails that act as intermediate hosts and human water contact patterns. Remote sensing data have been utilized for spatially explicit risk profiling of schistosomiasis. We investigated the potential of remote sensing to characterize habitat conditions of parasite and intermediate host snails and discuss the relevance for public health.We employed high-resolution remote sensing data, environmental field measurements, and ecological data to model environmental suitability for schistosomiasis-related parasite and snail species. The model was developed for Burkina Faso using a habitat suitability index (HSI. The plausibility of remote sensing habitat variables was validated using field measurements. The established model was transferred to different ecological settings in Côte d'Ivoire and validated against readily available survey data from school-aged children.Environmental suitability for schistosomiasis transmission was spatially delineated and quantified by seven habitat variables derived from remote sensing data. The strengths and weaknesses highlighted by the plausibility analysis showed that temporal dynamic water and vegetation measures were particularly useful to model parasite and snail habitat suitability, whereas the measurement of water surface temperature and topographic variables did not perform appropriately. The transferability of the model showed significant relations between the HSI and infection prevalence in study sites of Côte d'Ivoire.A predictive map of environmental suitability for schistosomiasis transmission can support measures to gain and sustain control. This is particularly relevant as emphasis is shifting from morbidity control to interrupting transmission. Further validation of our mechanistic model needs to be complemented by field data of parasite- and

  15. Combining dispersal, landscape connectivity and habitat suitability to assess climate-induced changes in the distribution of Cunningham's skink, Egernia cunninghami.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin Y Ofori

    Full Text Available The ability of species to track their climate niche is dependent on their dispersal potential and the connectivity of the landscape matrix linking current and future suitable habitat. However, studies modeling climate-driven range shifts rarely address the movement of species across landscapes realistically, often assuming "unlimited" or "no" dispersal. Here, we incorporate dispersal rate and landscape connectivity with a species distribution model (Maxent to assess the extent to which the Cunningham's skink (Egernia cunninghami may be capable of tracking spatial shifts in suitable habitat as climate changes. Our model was projected onto four contrasting, but equally plausible, scenarios describing futures that are (relative to now hot/wet, warm/dry, hot/with similar precipitation and warm/wet, at six time horizons with decadal intervals (2020-2070 and at two spatial resolutions: 1 km and 250 m. The size of suitable habitat was projected to decline 23-63% at 1 km and 26-64% at 250 m, by 2070. Combining Maxent output with the dispersal rate of the species and connectivity of the intervening landscape matrix showed that most current populations in regions projected to become unsuitable in the medium to long term, will be unable to shift the distance necessary to reach suitable habitat. In particular, numerous populations currently inhabiting the trailing edge of the species' range are highly unlikely to be able to disperse fast enough to track climate change. Unless these populations are capable of adaptation they are likely to be extirpated. We note, however, that the core of the species distribution remains suitable across the broad spectrum of climate scenarios considered. Our findings highlight challenges faced by philopatric species and the importance of adaptation for the persistence of peripheral populations under climate change.

  16. Habitat Suitability Index (HIS) of Surili (Presbytis comata Desmarest, 1822) in mixed forest of Kuningan District, West Java-Indonesia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Budi Prasetyo, Lilik; Supartono, Toto; Priyono Kartono, Agus; Hikmat, Agus; Ramdhoni, Syahru

    2017-01-01

    Java has been experiencing deforestation due to high population pressure. A lot of natural forests which play an important role as wildlife habitat are loss. The remaining natural forest distribute in mountainous areas in the form natural conservation area, meanwhile the others have been converted into settlement andinfrastructure, food crops, cash crops plantation, estate and private forest plantation. Javan langur (Presbytiscomata) is an endemic species of Java and used to utilize natural forest as their habitat. However, in a recent observation the species isfound inside plantation forest in Kuningan district, West Java. This is a unique finding, due to the fact that a plantation forest is not suitable habitat for Javan langur. The research is aimed to develop Habitat Suitability for this species based on physical, biological and human disturbance factors. Data on Javan langur presence and its habitat component were derived from field observation and secondary data/map. Result showed HSI could be developed based on 4 PC and showed that the study area mostly is occupied by low HIS Index or not suitable area for surili.

  17. Present and Future Projections of Habitat Suitability of the Asian Tiger Mosquito, a Vector of Viral Pathogens, from Global Climate Simulations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Proestos, Y.; Christophides, G.; Erguler, K.; Tanarhte, M.; Waldock, J.; Lelieveld, J.

    2014-12-01

    Climate change can influence the transmission of vector borne diseases (VBDs) through altering the habitat suitability of insect vectors. Here we present global climate model simulations and evaluate the associated uncertainties in view of the main meteorological factors that may affect the distribution of the Asian Tiger mosquito (Aedes albopictus), which can transmit pathogens that cause Chikungunya, Dengue fever, yellow fever and various encephalitides. Using a general circulation model (GCM) at 50 km horizontal resolution to simulate mosquito survival variables including temperature, precipitation and relative humidity, we present both global and regional projections of the habitat suitability up to the middle of the 21st century. The model resolution of 50 km allows evaluation against previous projections for Europe and provides a basis for comparative analyses with other regions. Model uncertainties and performance are addressed in light of the recent CMIP5 ensemble climate model simulations for the RCP8.5 concentration pathway and using meteorological re-analysis data (ERA-Interim/ECMWF) for the recent past. Uncertainty ranges associated with the thresholds of meteorological variables that may affect the distribution of Ae. albopictus are diagnosed using fuzzy-logic methodology, notably to assess the influence of selected meteorological criteria and combinations of criteria that influence mosquito habitat suitability. From the climate projections for 2050, and adopting a habitat suitability index larger than 70%, we estimate that about 2.4 billion individuals in a land area of nearly 20 million square kilometres will potentially be exposed to Ae. albopictus. The synthesis of fuzzy-logic based on mosquito biology and climate change analysis provides new insights into the regional and global spreading of VBDs to support disease control and policy making.

  18. Integrating Open Access Geospatial Data to Map the Habitat Suitability of the Declining Corn Bunting (Miliaria calandra

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abdulhakim M. Abdi

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available The efficacy of integrating open access geospatial data to produce habitat suitability maps for the corn bunting (Miliaria calandra was investigated. Landsat Enhanced Thematic Mapper Plus (ETM+, Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM and Corine (Coordination of Information on the Environment land cover data for the year 2000 (CLC2000 were processed to extract explanatory variables and divided into three sets; Satellite (ETM+, SRTM, CLC2000 and Combined (CLC2000 + Satellite. Presence-absence data for M. calandra, collected during structured surveys for the Catalan Breeding Bird Atlas, were provided by the Catalan Ornithological Institute. The dataset was partitioned into an equal number of presence and absence points by dividing it into five groups, each composed of 88 randomly selected presence points to match the number of absences. A logistic regression model was then built for each group. Models were evaluated using area under the curve (AUC of the receiver operating characteristic (ROC. Results of the five groups were averaged to produce mean Satellite, CLC2000 and Combined models. The mean AUC values were 0.69, 0.81 and 0.90 for the CLC2000, Satellite and the Combined model, respectively. The probability of M. calandra presence had the strongest positive correlation with land surface temperature, modified soil adjusted vegetation index, coefficient of variation for ETM+ band 5 and the fraction of non-irrigated arable land.

  19. Predictive Modeling of Spinner Dolphin (Stenella longirostris) Resting Habitat in the Main Hawaiian Islands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thorne, Lesley H.; Johnston, David W.; Urban, Dean L.; Tyne, Julian; Bejder, Lars; Baird, Robin W.; Yin, Suzanne; Rickards, Susan H.; Deakos, Mark H.; Mobley, Joseph R.; Pack, Adam A.; Chapla Hill, Marie

    2012-01-01

    Predictive habitat models can provide critical information that is necessary in many conservation applications. Using Maximum Entropy modeling, we characterized habitat relationships and generated spatial predictions of spinner dolphin (Stenella longirostris) resting habitat in the main Hawaiian Islands. Spinner dolphins in Hawai'i exhibit predictable daily movements, using inshore bays as resting habitat during daylight hours and foraging in offshore waters at night. There are growing concerns regarding the effects of human activities on spinner dolphins resting in coastal areas. However, the environmental factors that define suitable resting habitat remain unclear and must be assessed and quantified in order to properly address interactions between humans and spinner dolphins. We used a series of dolphin sightings from recent surveys in the main Hawaiian Islands and a suite of environmental variables hypothesized as being important to resting habitat to model spinner dolphin resting habitat. The model performed well in predicting resting habitat and indicated that proximity to deep water foraging areas, depth, the proportion of bays with shallow depths, and rugosity were important predictors of spinner dolphin habitat. Predicted locations of suitable spinner dolphin resting habitat provided in this study indicate areas where future survey efforts should be focused and highlight potential areas of conflict with human activities. This study provides an example of a presence-only habitat model used to inform the management of a species for which patterns of habitat availability are poorly understood. PMID:22937022

  20. Predictive modeling of spinner dolphin (Stenella longirostris resting habitat in the main Hawaiian Islands.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lesley H Thorne

    Full Text Available Predictive habitat models can provide critical information that is necessary in many conservation applications. Using Maximum Entropy modeling, we characterized habitat relationships and generated spatial predictions of spinner dolphin (Stenella longirostris resting habitat in the main Hawaiian Islands. Spinner dolphins in Hawai'i exhibit predictable daily movements, using inshore bays as resting habitat during daylight hours and foraging in offshore waters at night. There are growing concerns regarding the effects of human activities on spinner dolphins resting in coastal areas. However, the environmental factors that define suitable resting habitat remain unclear and must be assessed and quantified in order to properly address interactions between humans and spinner dolphins. We used a series of dolphin sightings from recent surveys in the main Hawaiian Islands and a suite of environmental variables hypothesized as being important to resting habitat to model spinner dolphin resting habitat. The model performed well in predicting resting habitat and indicated that proximity to deep water foraging areas, depth, the proportion of bays with shallow depths, and rugosity were important predictors of spinner dolphin habitat. Predicted locations of suitable spinner dolphin resting habitat provided in this study indicate areas where future survey efforts should be focused and highlight potential areas of conflict with human activities. This study provides an example of a presence-only habitat model used to inform the management of a species for which patterns of habitat availability are poorly understood.

  1. Predictive modeling of spinner dolphin (Stenella longirostris) resting habitat in the main Hawaiian Islands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thorne, Lesley H; Johnston, David W; Urban, Dean L; Tyne, Julian; Bejder, Lars; Baird, Robin W; Yin, Suzanne; Rickards, Susan H; Deakos, Mark H; Mobley, Joseph R; Pack, Adam A; Chapla Hill, Marie

    2012-01-01

    Predictive habitat models can provide critical information that is necessary in many conservation applications. Using Maximum Entropy modeling, we characterized habitat relationships and generated spatial predictions of spinner dolphin (Stenella longirostris) resting habitat in the main Hawaiian Islands. Spinner dolphins in Hawai'i exhibit predictable daily movements, using inshore bays as resting habitat during daylight hours and foraging in offshore waters at night. There are growing concerns regarding the effects of human activities on spinner dolphins resting in coastal areas. However, the environmental factors that define suitable resting habitat remain unclear and must be assessed and quantified in order to properly address interactions between humans and spinner dolphins. We used a series of dolphin sightings from recent surveys in the main Hawaiian Islands and a suite of environmental variables hypothesized as being important to resting habitat to model spinner dolphin resting habitat. The model performed well in predicting resting habitat and indicated that proximity to deep water foraging areas, depth, the proportion of bays with shallow depths, and rugosity were important predictors of spinner dolphin habitat. Predicted locations of suitable spinner dolphin resting habitat provided in this study indicate areas where future survey efforts should be focused and highlight potential areas of conflict with human activities. This study provides an example of a presence-only habitat model used to inform the management of a species for which patterns of habitat availability are poorly understood.

  2. How Many Wolves (Canis lupus) Fit into Germany? The Role of Assumptions in Predictive Rule-Based Habitat Models for Habitat Generalists

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fechter, Dominik; Storch, Ilse

    2014-01-01

    Due to legislative protection, many species, including large carnivores, are currently recolonizing Europe. To address the impending human-wildlife conflicts in advance, predictive habitat models can be used to determine potentially suitable habitat and areas likely to be recolonized. As field data are often limited, quantitative rule based models or the extrapolation of results from other studies are often the techniques of choice. Using the wolf (Canis lupus) in Germany as a model for habitat generalists, we developed a habitat model based on the location and extent of twelve existing wolf home ranges in Eastern Germany, current knowledge on wolf biology, different habitat modeling techniques and various input data to analyze ten different input parameter sets and address the following questions: (1) How do a priori assumptions and different input data or habitat modeling techniques affect the abundance and distribution of potentially suitable wolf habitat and the number of wolf packs in Germany? (2) In a synthesis across input parameter sets, what areas are predicted to be most suitable? (3) Are existing wolf pack home ranges in Eastern Germany consistent with current knowledge on wolf biology and habitat relationships? Our results indicate that depending on which assumptions on habitat relationships are applied in the model and which modeling techniques are chosen, the amount of potentially suitable habitat estimated varies greatly. Depending on a priori assumptions, Germany could accommodate between 154 and 1769 wolf packs. The locations of the existing wolf pack home ranges in Eastern Germany indicate that wolves are able to adapt to areas densely populated by humans, but are limited to areas with low road densities. Our analysis suggests that predictive habitat maps in general, should be interpreted with caution and illustrates the risk for habitat modelers to concentrate on only one selection of habitat factors or modeling technique. PMID:25029506

  3. How many wolves (Canis lupus) fit into Germany? The role of assumptions in predictive rule-based habitat models for habitat generalists.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fechter, Dominik; Storch, Ilse

    2014-01-01

    Due to legislative protection, many species, including large carnivores, are currently recolonizing Europe. To address the impending human-wildlife conflicts in advance, predictive habitat models can be used to determine potentially suitable habitat and areas likely to be recolonized. As field data are often limited, quantitative rule based models or the extrapolation of results from other studies are often the techniques of choice. Using the wolf (Canis lupus) in Germany as a model for habitat generalists, we developed a habitat model based on the location and extent of twelve existing wolf home ranges in Eastern Germany, current knowledge on wolf biology, different habitat modeling techniques and various input data to analyze ten different input parameter sets and address the following questions: (1) How do a priori assumptions and different input data or habitat modeling techniques affect the abundance and distribution of potentially suitable wolf habitat and the number of wolf packs in Germany? (2) In a synthesis across input parameter sets, what areas are predicted to be most suitable? (3) Are existing wolf pack home ranges in Eastern Germany consistent with current knowledge on wolf biology and habitat relationships? Our results indicate that depending on which assumptions on habitat relationships are applied in the model and which modeling techniques are chosen, the amount of potentially suitable habitat estimated varies greatly. Depending on a priori assumptions, Germany could accommodate between 154 and 1769 wolf packs. The locations of the existing wolf pack home ranges in Eastern Germany indicate that wolves are able to adapt to areas densely populated by humans, but are limited to areas with low road densities. Our analysis suggests that predictive habitat maps in general, should be interpreted with caution and illustrates the risk for habitat modelers to concentrate on only one selection of habitat factors or modeling technique.

  4. Climate and air pollution impacts on habitat suitability of Austrian forest ecosystems

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dirnböck, Thomas; Djukic, Ika; Kitzler, Barbara; Kobler, Johannes; Mol, Janet; Posch, Max; Reinds, Gert Jan; Schlutow, Angela; Starlinger, Franz; Wamelink, Wieger G.W.

    2017-01-01

    Climate change and excess deposition of airborne nitrogen (N) are among the main stressors to floristic biodiversity. One particular concern is the deterioration of valuable habitats such as those protected under the European Habitat Directive. In future, climate-driven shifts (and losses) in the

  5. Using population viability analysis, genomics, and habitat suitability to forecast future population patterns of Little Owl Athene noctua across Europe

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Line Holm; Sunde, Peter; Pellegrino, Irene

    2017-01-01

    fragmentation, turning once continuous populations into metapopulations. It is thus increasingly important to estimate both the number of individuals it takes to create a genetically viable population and the population trend. Here, population viability analysis and habitat suitability modeling were used...... the southeastern part of Europe have a greater probability of persistence. In order to be considered genetically viable, individual populations must count 1,000–30,000 individuals. As Little Owl populations of several countries count ...,000 individuals, management actions resulting in exchange of individuals between populations or even countries are probably necessary to prevent losing genetic diversity over a 100-year period. At a continental scale, a habitat suitability analysis suggested Little Owl to be affected positively by increasing...

  6. Production of fiberglass/metal composite material suitable for building habitat and manufacturing facilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    1987-01-01

    The production of a fiberglass/metal composite material suitable for building habitats and manufacturing facilities was the project for Clemson. The concept and development of the knowledge necessary to produce glass fibers originated in the spring semester. During the summer, while at Johnson Space Center, fiberglass from a rock composition similar to ones found at the Apollo 16 site on the moon was successfully produced. The project this year was a continuation of last year's studies. We addressed the following problems which emerged as the work progressed: (1) Methods for coating the fibers with a metal were explored. We manufactured composites in two stages: Glass fibers without any coating on them; and fibers coated with metals as they were made. This proved to be a difficult process. Future activities include using a chemical vapor deposition process on fibers which have been made. (2) A glass furnace was developed which relies primarily on solar energy for melting the glass. The temperature of the melted glass is maintained by electrical means. The design is for 250 kg of glass per day. An electrical engineering student developed a scheme for controlling the melting and manufacturing process from the earth. This was done to minimize the human risk. Graphite refractories are relied on to contain the melt. (3) The glass composition chosen for the project is a relatively pure anorthite which is available in the highland regions of the lunar surface. A major problems with this material is that it melts at a comparatively high temperature. This problem will be solved by using graphite refractory materials for the furnace. The advantage of this glass composition is that it is very stable and does not tend to crystallize. (4) We have also refined the experimental furnace and fiber making machinery which we will be using at Johnson Space Center this summer. We believe that we will be able to draw and coat glass fibers in a vacuum for use in composites. We intend to

  7. Wildlife Habitat Models for Terrestrial Vertebrates

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — The project developed habitat capability models for representative wildlife species. It was part of a project led by the University of Massachusetts Amherst to...

  8. HOW ARE PLANT SPECIES IN CENTRAL EUROPEAN BEECH (FAGUS SYLVATICA L. FORESTS AFFECTED BY TEMPERATURE CHANGES? SHIFT OF POTENTIAL SUITABLE HABITATS UNDER GLOBAL WARMING

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. C. Jantsch

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available This study reveals which temperature range is favoured or avoided by 156 forest plant species and how the distribution of potential suitable habitats of species in beech forests may change in the future. We performed 140 phytosociological relevés along a temperature gradient (4.1 to 9.8 °C in Bavaria, southern Germany, on south exposed slopes. One half of the plots were located on acidic substrate, the other half on base-rich substrate. Generalized linear models (GLM were used to analyse species occurrence along the temperature gradient and to model habitats for species in beech forests under a present (1971-2000 and a future climate (2071-2100 scenario assuming a temperature increase of 1.8 °C. Herb species of beech forests are more adapted to lower temperatures and tree species more to higher temperatures. Current habitats will clearly change under increasing temperatures. We found large habitat losses for Luzula sylvatica (Huds. Gaudin, Maianthemum bifolium (L. F. W. Schmidt, Picea abies (L. H. Karst., Prenanthes purpurea L. and large habitat gains for Carpinus betulus L., Impatiens parviflora DC., Prunus avium (L. L. and Quercus petraea (Matt. Liebl. on both substrates. Forestry will be affected positively as well as negatively with a change in tree cultivation. Losses in biodiversity might be strong for mountainous forests and must also be considered in future conservation plans.

  9. Plant species dispersed by Galapagos tortoises surf the wave of habitat suitability under anthropogenic climate change.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Diego Ellis-Soto

    Full Text Available Native biodiversity on the Galapagos Archipelago is severely threatened by invasive alien species. On Santa Cruz Island, the abundance of introduced plant species is low in the arid lowlands of the Galapagos National Park, but increases with elevation into unprotected humid highlands. Two common alien plant species, guava (Psidium guajava and passion fruit (Passiflora edulis occur at higher elevations yet their seeds are dispersed into the lowlands by migrating Galapagos tortoises (Chelonoidis spp.. Tortoises transport large quantities of seeds over long distances into environments in which they have little or no chance of germination and survival under current climate conditions. However, climate change is projected to modify environmental conditions on Galapagos with unknown consequences for the distribution of native and introduced biodiversity. We quantified seed dispersal of guava and passion fruit in tortoise dung piles and the distribution of adult plants along two elevation gradients on Santa Cruz to assess current levels of 'wasted' seed dispersal. We computed species distribution models for both taxa under current and predicted future climate conditions. Assuming that tortoise migratory behaviour continues, current levels of "wasted" seed dispersal in lowlands were projected to decline dramatically in the future for guava but not for passion fruit. Tortoises will facilitate rapid range expansion for guava into lowland areas within the Galapagos National Park where this species is currently absent. Coupled with putative reduction in arid habitat for native species caused by climate change, tortoise driven guava invasion will pose a serious threat to local plant communities.

  10. Plant species dispersed by Galapagos tortoises surf the wave of habitat suitability under anthropogenic climate change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellis-Soto, Diego; Blake, Stephen; Soultan, Alaaeldin; Guézou, Anne; Cabrera, Fredy; Lötters, Stefan

    2017-01-01

    Native biodiversity on the Galapagos Archipelago is severely threatened by invasive alien species. On Santa Cruz Island, the abundance of introduced plant species is low in the arid lowlands of the Galapagos National Park, but increases with elevation into unprotected humid highlands. Two common alien plant species, guava (Psidium guajava) and passion fruit (Passiflora edulis) occur at higher elevations yet their seeds are dispersed into the lowlands by migrating Galapagos tortoises (Chelonoidis spp.). Tortoises transport large quantities of seeds over long distances into environments in which they have little or no chance of germination and survival under current climate conditions. However, climate change is projected to modify environmental conditions on Galapagos with unknown consequences for the distribution of native and introduced biodiversity. We quantified seed dispersal of guava and passion fruit in tortoise dung piles and the distribution of adult plants along two elevation gradients on Santa Cruz to assess current levels of 'wasted' seed dispersal. We computed species distribution models for both taxa under current and predicted future climate conditions. Assuming that tortoise migratory behaviour continues, current levels of "wasted" seed dispersal in lowlands were projected to decline dramatically in the future for guava but not for passion fruit. Tortoises will facilitate rapid range expansion for guava into lowland areas within the Galapagos National Park where this species is currently absent. Coupled with putative reduction in arid habitat for native species caused by climate change, tortoise driven guava invasion will pose a serious threat to local plant communities.

  11. The Cross River gorillas (Gorilla gorilla diehli) at Mawambi Hills, South-West Cameroon: habitat suitability and vulnerability to anthropogenic disturbance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Etiendem, Denis N; Funwi-Gabga, Neba; Tagg, Nikki; Hens, Luc; Indah, Eni K

    2013-01-01

    Only about 300 individuals of the Cross River gorilla (CRG; Gorilla gorilla diehli) survive today. The subspecies is endemic to approximately 12-14 sites at the Cameroon-Nigeria border, and is critically endangered. To understand survival prospects of the CRG at Mawambi Hills, Cameroon, a maximum entropy (MaxEnt) distribution model was used to predict the distribution of gorillas. Overall, 24% of the study area was predicted to be suitable for gorillas. The most important predictors of gorilla distribution were elevation as a surrogate for accessibility (52.4%), distance to nearby villages which represents proximity to anthropogenic disturbance (22.7%), and slope steepness as a proxy for security (19.4%). Gorillas mainly occupied slopes of steep hills and avoided areas of human disturbance. To evaluate the spatial relationship between gorilla distribution and human activities, the predicted habitat suitability map was overlaid with a kernel density map of human activities. A positive correlation was found between locations of human activity and suitable habitat for gorillas (r = 0.5). This suggests that anthropogenic pressures in previously unused forest areas are increasing as a result of resource depletion at lower altitudes, consequently putting the gorillas at greater risk. Conservation management plans that seek to reduce human encroachment into habitats preferred by gorillas such as steep hills will probably contribute to gorilla survival. Copyright © 2013 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  12. Higher mobility of butterflies than moths connected to habitat suitability and body size in a release experiment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuussaari, Mikko; Saarinen, Matias; Korpela, Eeva-Liisa; Pöyry, Juha; Hyvönen, Terho

    2014-10-01

    Mobility is a key factor determining lepidopteran species responses to environmental change. However, direct multispecies comparisons of mobility are rare and empirical comparisons between butterflies and moths have not been previously conducted. Here, we compared mobility between butterflies and diurnal moths and studied species traits affecting butterfly mobility. We experimentally marked and released 2011 butterfly and 2367 moth individuals belonging to 32 and 28 species, respectively, in a 25 m × 25 m release area within an 11-ha, 8-year-old set-aside field. Distance moved and emigration rate from the release habitat were recorded by species. The release experiment produced directly comparable mobility data in 18 butterfly and 9 moth species with almost 500 individuals recaptured. Butterflies were found more mobile than geometroid moths in terms of both distance moved (mean 315 m vs. 63 m, respectively) and emigration rate (mean 54% vs. 17%, respectively). Release habitat suitability had a strong effect on emigration rate and distance moved, because butterflies tended to leave the set-aside, if it was not suitable for breeding. In addition, emigration rate and distance moved increased significantly with increasing body size. When phylogenetic relatedness among species was included in the analyses, the significant effect of body size disappeared, but habitat suitability remained significant for distance moved. The higher mobility of butterflies than geometroid moths can largely be explained by morphological differences, as butterflies are more robust fliers. The important role of release habitat suitability in butterfly mobility was expected, but seems not to have been empirically documented before. The observed positive correlation between butterfly size and mobility is in agreement with our previous findings on butterfly colonization speed in a long-term set-aside experiment and recent meta-analyses on butterfly mobility.

  13. Ellenberg's indicator values support prediction of suitable habitat for pre-diapause larvae of endangered butterfly Euphydryas aurinia

    OpenAIRE

    Pielech, Remigiusz; Zaj?c, Krzysztof; Kadej, Marcin; Malicki, Marek; Malkiewicz,Adam; Tarnawski, Dariusz

    2017-01-01

    In spite of the great popularity of Ellenberg?s Indicator Values (EIVs) in plant ecology, animal ecologists seldom use EIVs to address ecological questions. In this study we used EIVs to test their potential usefulness for the prediction of suitable habitat for pre-diapause larvae of the endangered butterfly species Euphydryas aurinia. Nine transects crossing grasslands in SW Poland with abundant populations of E. aurinia were designed. We sampled 76 vegetation plots along the transects. In a...

  14. Anticipating Knowledge to Inform Species Management: Predicting Spatially Explicit Habitat Suitability of a Colonial Vulture Spreading Its Range

    OpenAIRE

    Mateo-Tom?s, Patricia; Olea, Pedro P.

    2010-01-01

    BACKGROUND: The knowledge of both potential distribution and habitat suitability is fundamental in spreading species to inform in advance management and conservation planning. After a severe decline in the past decades, the griffon vulture (Gyps fulvus) is now spreading its breeding range towards the northwest in Spain and Europe. Because of its key ecological function, anticipated spatial knowledge is required to inform appropriately both vulture and ecosystem management. METHODOLOGY/FINDING...

  15. Interfacing models of wildlife habitat and human development to predict the future distribution of puma habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burdett, Christopher L.; Crooks, Kevin R.; Theobald, David M.; Wilson, Kenneth R.; Boydston, Erin E.; Lyren, Lisa A.; Fisher, Robert N.; Vickers, T. Winston; Morrison, Scott A.; Boyce, Walter M.

    2010-01-01

    The impact of human land uses on ecological systems typically differ relative to how extensively natural conditions are modified. Exurban development is intermediate-intensity residential development that often occurs in natural landscapes. Most species-habitat models do not evaluate the effects of such intermediate levels of human development and even fewer predict how future development patterns might affect the amount and configuration of habitat. We addressed these deficiencies by interfacing a habitat model with a spatially-explicit housing-density model to study the effect of human land uses on the habitat of pumas (Puma concolor) in southern California. We studied the response of pumas to natural and anthropogenic features within their home ranges and how mortality risk varied across a gradient of human development. We also used our housing-density model to estimate past and future housing densities and model the distribution of puma habitat in 1970, 2000, and 2030. The natural landscape for pumas in our study area consisted of riparian areas, oak woodlands, and open, conifer forests embedded in a chaparral matrix. Pumas rarely incorporated suburban or urban development into their home ranges, which is consistent with the hypothesis that the behavioral decisions of individuals can be collectively manifested as population-limiting factors at broader spatial scales. Pumas incorporated rural and exurban development into their home ranges, apparently perceiving these areas as modified, rather than non-habitat. Overall, pumas used exurban areas less than expected and showed a neutral response to rural areas. However, individual pumas that selected for or showed a neutral response to exurban areas had a higher risk of mortality than pumas that selected against exurban habitat. Exurban areas are likely hotspots for puma-human conflict in southern California. Approximately 10% of our study area will transform from exurban, rural, or undeveloped areas to suburban or

  16. Assessing shoreline exposure and oyster habitat suitability maximizes potential success for sustainable shoreline protection using restored oyster reefs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Megan K. La Peyre

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Oyster reefs provide valuable ecosystem services that contribute to coastal resilience. Unfortunately, many reefs have been degraded or removed completely, and there are increased efforts to restore oysters in many coastal areas. In particular, much attention has recently been given to the restoration of shellfish reefs along eroding shorelines to reduce erosion. Such fringing reef approaches, however, often lack empirical data to identify locations where reefs are most effective in reducing marsh erosion, or fully take into account habitat suitability. Using monitoring data from 5 separate fringing reef projects across coastal Louisiana, we quantify shoreline exposure (fetch + wind direction + wind speed and reef impacts on shoreline retreat. Our results indicate that fringing oyster reefs have a higher impact on shoreline retreat at higher exposure shorelines. At higher exposures, fringing reefs reduced marsh edge erosion an average of 1.0 m y−1. Using these data, we identify ranges of shoreline exposure values where oyster reefs are most effective at reducing marsh edge erosion and apply this knowledge to a case study within one Louisiana estuary. In Breton Sound estuary, we calculate shoreline exposure at 500 random points and then overlay a habitat suitability index for oysters. This method and the resulting visualization show areas most likely to support sustainable oyster populations as well as significantly reduce shoreline erosion. Our results demonstrate how site selection criteria, which include shoreline exposure and habitat suitability, are critical to ensuring greater positive impacts and longevity of oyster reef restoration projects.

  17. Assessing shoreline exposure and oyster habitat suitability maximizes potential success for sustainable shoreline protection using restored oyster reefs

    Science.gov (United States)

    LaPeyre, Megan K.; Serra, Kayla; Joyner, T. Andrew; Humphries, Austin T.

    2015-01-01

    Oyster reefs provide valuable ecosystem services that contribute to coastal resilience. Unfortunately, many reefs have been degraded or removed completely, and there are increased efforts to restore oysters in many coastal areas. In particular, much attention has recently been given to the restoration of shellfish reefs along eroding shorelines to reduce erosion. Such fringing reef approaches, however, often lack empirical data to identify locations where reefs are most effective in reducing marsh erosion, or fully take into account habitat suitability. Using monitoring data from 5 separate fringing reef projects across coastal Louisiana, we quantify shoreline exposure (fetch + wind direction + wind speed) and reef impacts on shoreline retreat. Our results indicate that fringing oyster reefs have a higher impact on shoreline retreat at higher exposure shorelines. At higher exposures, fringing reefs reduced marsh edge erosion an average of 1.0 m y−1. Using these data, we identify ranges of shoreline exposure values where oyster reefs are most effective at reducing marsh edge erosion and apply this knowledge to a case study within one Louisiana estuary. In Breton Sound estuary, we calculate shoreline exposure at 500 random points and then overlay a habitat suitability index for oysters. This method and the resulting visualization show areas most likely to support sustainable oyster populations as well as significantly reduce shoreline erosion. Our results demonstrate how site selection criteria, which include shoreline exposure and habitat suitability, are critical to ensuring greater positive impacts and longevity of oyster reef restoration projects.

  18. Habitat suitability for the otter (Lutra lutra of some rivers of Abruzzo Region (Central Italy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paola Ottino

    1995-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract During the period 1990-93 the presence of the otter (Lutra lutra in Abruzzo region (central Italy has been regularly recorded on the Orta river; some signs were also found on the Vella river only in 1993. Eight rivers were investigated in order to evaluate the habitat suitability for the otter; an index of suitability was calculated considering the following parameters: riparian vegetation cover, water quality and antropic pressure. About 1/3 of 355 km of river was considered suitable for the species. The reinforcing of the native otter population should be considered in combination with the restoration of otter habitats. Riassunto Idoneità ambientale per la lontra (Lutra lutra di alcuni fiumi dell'Abruzzo - Nel 1990-93 la presenza della Lontra (Lutra lutra in Abruzzo è stata accertata con regolarità per il fiume Orta e sporadicamente per il fiume Vella. Per 8 fiumi è stata valutata l'idoneità ambientale per la specie calcolando un indice ottenuto dai dati raccolti sulla copertura vegetale riparia, qualità delle acque e pressione antropica. Su un totale di 355 km di fiume, solo 1/3 è risultato idoneo alla specie. Un programma di ripopolamento della specie potrebbe essere considerato solo dopo interventi di riqualificazione ambientale finalizzati a ristabilire una buona continuità di habitat favorevoli alla specie.

  19. Western Monarch and Milkweed Habitat Suitability Modeling Project- Final Presentation

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — To better understand the distribution of key breeding areas for the declining western population of monarch butterflies, the USFWS, in collaboration with the Xerces...

  20. Ellenberg's indicator values support prediction of suitable habitat for pre-diapause larvae of endangered butterfly Euphydryas aurinia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pielech, Remigiusz; Zając, Krzysztof; Kadej, Marcin; Malicki, Marek; Malkiewicz, Adam; Tarnawski, Dariusz

    2017-01-01

    In spite of the great popularity of Ellenberg's Indicator Values (EIVs) in plant ecology, animal ecologists seldom use EIVs to address ecological questions. In this study we used EIVs to test their potential usefulness for the prediction of suitable habitat for pre-diapause larvae of the endangered butterfly species Euphydryas aurinia. Nine transects crossing grasslands in SW Poland with abundant populations of E. aurinia were designed. We sampled 76 vegetation plots along the transects. In addition, the presence of the larval webs of E. aurinia in sampled plots was also recorded. We then calculated the mean community EIVs of light, nitrogen, soil reaction, moisture and temperature for each sample plots. Generalized linear mixed-effects models (GLMMs) were used to assess which factors determine the local occurrence of larval webs of E. aurinia. We found the larval webs only in 12 plots, while the host plant was present in 39 of the examined plots. The presence of the host plant was the most important predictor in both models including all plots or including only plots with host plants. The other significant predictor was the mean EIV of light, and its importance increased in models considering all plots. We attributed the importance of the EIV of light to the site openness and density of the vegetation layer. A positive relationship between this predictor and the presence of larval webs indicates that sites with looser vegetation, a lower contribution of shrubs and tall herbs and better penetration of photosynthetically active radiation to lower vegetation layers are preferred by E. aurinia for oviposition. Moreover, the significance of EIV of light may be linked with management practices. Many light-demanding species decline after cessation of mowing as a result of litter accumulation and the dominance of tall herbs. An absence of light-demanding species decreases the community's mean EIV of light and thus indicates the influence of meadow abandonment.

  1. Ellenberg's indicator values support prediction of suitable habitat for pre-diapause larvae of endangered butterfly Euphydryas aurinia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Remigiusz Pielech

    Full Text Available In spite of the great popularity of Ellenberg's Indicator Values (EIVs in plant ecology, animal ecologists seldom use EIVs to address ecological questions. In this study we used EIVs to test their potential usefulness for the prediction of suitable habitat for pre-diapause larvae of the endangered butterfly species Euphydryas aurinia. Nine transects crossing grasslands in SW Poland with abundant populations of E. aurinia were designed. We sampled 76 vegetation plots along the transects. In addition, the presence of the larval webs of E. aurinia in sampled plots was also recorded. We then calculated the mean community EIVs of light, nitrogen, soil reaction, moisture and temperature for each sample plots. Generalized linear mixed-effects models (GLMMs were used to assess which factors determine the local occurrence of larval webs of E. aurinia. We found the larval webs only in 12 plots, while the host plant was present in 39 of the examined plots. The presence of the host plant was the most important predictor in both models including all plots or including only plots with host plants. The other significant predictor was the mean EIV of light, and its importance increased in models considering all plots. We attributed the importance of the EIV of light to the site openness and density of the vegetation layer. A positive relationship between this predictor and the presence of larval webs indicates that sites with looser vegetation, a lower contribution of shrubs and tall herbs and better penetration of photosynthetically active radiation to lower vegetation layers are preferred by E. aurinia for oviposition. Moreover, the significance of EIV of light may be linked with management practices. Many light-demanding species decline after cessation of mowing as a result of litter accumulation and the dominance of tall herbs. An absence of light-demanding species decreases the community's mean EIV of light and thus indicates the influence of meadow

  2. Projected future suitable habitat and productivity of Douglas-fir in western North America

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aaron R. Weiskittel; Nicholas L. Crookston; Gerald E. Rehfeldt

    2012-01-01

    Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii [Mirb.] Franco) is one of the most common and commercially important species in western North America. The species can occupy a range of habitats, is long-lived (up to 500 years), and highly productive. However, the future of Douglas-fir in western North America is highly uncertain due to the expected changes in climate conditions....

  3. Asian elephants in China: estimating population size and evaluating habitat suitability.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li Zhang

    Full Text Available We monitored the last remaining Asian elephant populations in China over the past decade. Using DNA tools and repeat genotyping, we estimated the population sizes from 654 dung samples collected from various areas. Combined with morphological individual identifications from over 6,300 elephant photographs taken in the wild, we estimated that the total Asian elephant population size in China is between 221 and 245. Population genetic structure and diversity were examined using a 556-bp fragment of mitochondrial DNA, and 24 unique haplotypes were detected from DNA analysis of 178 individuals. A phylogenetic analysis revealed two highly divergent clades of Asian elephants, α and β, present in Chinese populations. Four populations (Mengla, Shangyong, Mengyang, and Pu'Er carried mtDNA from the α clade, and only one population (Nangunhe carried mtDNA belonging to the β clade. Moreover, high genetic divergence was observed between the Nangunhe population and the other four populations; however, genetic diversity among the five populations was low, possibly due to limited gene flow because of habitat fragmentation. The expansion of rubber plantations, crop cultivation, and villages along rivers and roads had caused extensive degradation of natural forest in these areas. This had resulted in the loss and fragmentation of elephant habitats and had formed artificial barriers that inhibited elephant migration. Using Geographic Information System, Global Positioning System, and Remote Sensing technology, we found that the area occupied by rubber plantations, tea farms, and urban settlements had dramatically increased over the past 40 years, resulting in the loss and fragmentation of elephant habitats and forming artificial barriers that inhibit elephant migration. The restoration of ecological corridors to facilitate gene exchange among isolated elephant populations and the establishment of cross-boundary protected areas between China and Laos to secure

  4. Asian elephants in China: estimating population size and evaluating habitat suitability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Li; Dong, Lu; Lin, Liu; Feng, Limin; Yan, Fan; Wang, Lanxin; Guo, Xianming; Luo, Aidong

    2015-01-01

    We monitored the last remaining Asian elephant populations in China over the past decade. Using DNA tools and repeat genotyping, we estimated the population sizes from 654 dung samples collected from various areas. Combined with morphological individual identifications from over 6,300 elephant photographs taken in the wild, we estimated that the total Asian elephant population size in China is between 221 and 245. Population genetic structure and diversity were examined using a 556-bp fragment of mitochondrial DNA, and 24 unique haplotypes were detected from DNA analysis of 178 individuals. A phylogenetic analysis revealed two highly divergent clades of Asian elephants, α and β, present in Chinese populations. Four populations (Mengla, Shangyong, Mengyang, and Pu'Er) carried mtDNA from the α clade, and only one population (Nangunhe) carried mtDNA belonging to the β clade. Moreover, high genetic divergence was observed between the Nangunhe population and the other four populations; however, genetic diversity among the five populations was low, possibly due to limited gene flow because of habitat fragmentation. The expansion of rubber plantations, crop cultivation, and villages along rivers and roads had caused extensive degradation of natural forest in these areas. This had resulted in the loss and fragmentation of elephant habitats and had formed artificial barriers that inhibited elephant migration. Using Geographic Information System, Global Positioning System, and Remote Sensing technology, we found that the area occupied by rubber plantations, tea farms, and urban settlements had dramatically increased over the past 40 years, resulting in the loss and fragmentation of elephant habitats and forming artificial barriers that inhibit elephant migration. The restoration of ecological corridors to facilitate gene exchange among isolated elephant populations and the establishment of cross-boundary protected areas between China and Laos to secure their natural

  5. Effects of Changes in Lugu Lake Water Quality on Schizothorax Yunnansis Ecological Habitat Based on HABITAT Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Wei; Mynnet, Arthur

    Schizothorax Yunnansis is an unique fish species only existing in Lugu Lake, which is located in the southwestern China. The simulation and research on Schizothorax Yunnansis habitat environment have a vital significance to protect this rare fish. With the development of the tourism industry, there bring more pressure on the environmental protection. The living environment of Schizothorax Yunnansis is destroyed seriously because the water quality is suffering the sustaining pollution of domestic sewage from the peripheral villages. This paper analyzes the relationship between water quality change and Schizothorax Yunnansis ecological habitat and evalutes Schizothorax Yunnansis's ecological habitat impact based on HABITAT model. The results show that when the TP concentration in Lugu Lake does not exceed Schizothorax Yunnansis's survival threshold, Schizothorax Yunnansis can get more nutrients and the suitable habitat area for itself is increased. Conversely, it can lead to TP toxicity in the Schizothorax Yunnansis and even death. Therefore, unsuitable habitat area for Schizothorax Yunnansis is increased. It can be seen from the results that HABITAT model can assist in ecological impact assessment studies by translating results of hydrological, water quality models into effects on the natural environment and human society.

  6. Modelling white-water rafting suitability in a hydropower regulated Alpine River.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carolli, Mauro; Zolezzi, Guido; Geneletti, Davide; Siviglia, Annunziato; Carolli, Fabiano; Cainelli, Oscar

    2017-02-01

    Cultural and recreational river ecosystem services and their relations with the flow regime are still poorly investigated. We develop a modelling-based approach to assess recreational flow requirements and the spatially distributed river suitability for white-water rafting, a typical service offered by mountain streams, with potential conflicts of interest with hydropower regulation. The approach is based on the principles of habitat suitability modelling using water depth as the main attribute, with preference curves defined through interviews with local rafting guides. The methodology allows to compute streamflow thresholds for conditions of suitability and optimality of a river reach in relation to rafting. Rafting suitability response to past, present and future flow management scenarios can be predicted on the basis of a hydrological model, which is incorporated in the methodology and is able to account for anthropic effects. Rafting suitability is expressed through a novel metric, the "Rafting hydro-suitability index" (RHSI) which quantifies the cumulative duration of suitable and optimal conditions for rafting. The approach is applied on the Noce River (NE Italy), an Alpine River regulated by hydropower production and affected by hydropeaking, which influences suitability at a sub-daily scale. A dedicated algorithm is developed within the hydrological model to resemble hydropeaking conditions with daily flow data. In the Noce River, peak flows associated with hydropeaking support rafting activities in late summer, highlighting the dual nature of hydropeaking in regulated rivers. Rafting suitability is slightly reduced under present, hydropower-regulated flow conditions compared to an idealized flow regime characterised by no water abstractions. Localized water abstractions for small, run-of-the-river hydropower plants are predicted to negatively affect rafting suitability. The proposed methodology can be extended to support decision making for flow

  7. Marine Benthic Habitats and Seabed Suitability Mapping for Potential Ocean Current Energy Siting Offshore Southeast Florida

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amanda Mulcan

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available This study examines the legal framework for ocean current energy policy and regulation to develop a metric for assessing the biological and geological characteristics of a seabed area with respect to the siting of OCE devices, a framework of criteria by which to assess seabed suitability (seabed suitability framework that can facilitate the siting, and implementation of ocean current energy (OCE projects. Seafloor geology and benthic biological data were analyzed in conjunction with seafloor core sample geostatistical interpolation to locate suitable substrates for OCE anchoring. Existing submarine cable pathways were considered to determine pathways for power transmission cables that circumvent biologically sensitive areas. Suitability analysis indicates that areas east of the Miami Terrace and north of recently identified deep-sea coral mounds are the most appropriate for OCE siting due to abundance of sand/sediment substrate, existing underwater cable route access, and minimal biological presence (i.e., little to no benthic communities. Further reconnaissance requires higher resolution maps of geological substrate and benthic community locations to identify specific OCE development locations, classify benthic conditions, and minimize potentially negative OCE environmental impacts.

  8. Hydrographic influence on the spawning habitat suitability of western Baltic cod (Gadus morhua)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hüssy, K.; Hinrichsen, H.-H.; Huwer, B.

    2012-01-01

    of early life stages, mediated by environmental conditions of both a physical (water temperature, salinity and oxygen conditions, ocean currents) and a biological nature (i.e. food, predators). The objective of this study is to assess the importance of variability in environmental conditions within...... different western Baltic cod spawning grounds for egg survival. Habitat identification was based on environmental threshold levels for egg survival and development and ambient hydrographical conditions at different times during the spawning season. The long-term resolution of environmental conditions...

  9. A Modelling Framework to Assess the Effect of Pressures on River Abiotic Habitat Conditions and Biota.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jochem Kail

    Full Text Available River biota are affected by global reach-scale pressures, but most approaches for predicting biota of rivers focus on river reach or segment scale processes and habitats. Moreover, these approaches do not consider long-term morphological changes that affect habitat conditions. In this study, a modelling framework was further developed and tested to assess the effect of pressures at different spatial scales on reach-scale habitat conditions and biota. Ecohydrological and 1D hydrodynamic models were used to predict discharge and water quality at the catchment scale and the resulting water level at the downstream end of a study reach. Long-term reach morphology was modelled using empirical regime equations, meander migration and 2D morphodynamic models. The respective flow and substrate conditions in the study reach were predicted using a 2D hydrodynamic model, and the suitability of these habitats was assessed with novel habitat models. In addition, dispersal models for fish and macroinvertebrates were developed to assess the re-colonization potential and to finally compare habitat suitability and the availability/ability of species to colonize these habitats. Applicability was tested and model performance was assessed by comparing observed and predicted conditions in the lowland Treene River in northern Germany. Technically, it was possible to link the different models, but future applications would benefit from the development of open source software for all modelling steps to enable fully automated model runs. Future research needs concern the physical modelling of long-term morphodynamics, feedback of biota (e.g., macrophytes on abiotic habitat conditions, species interactions, and empirical data on the hydraulic habitat suitability and dispersal abilities of macroinvertebrates. The modelling framework is flexible and allows for including additional models and investigating different research and management questions, e.g., in climate impact

  10. A Modelling Framework to Assess the Effect of Pressures on River Abiotic Habitat Conditions and Biota.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kail, Jochem; Guse, Björn; Radinger, Johannes; Schröder, Maria; Kiesel, Jens; Kleinhans, Maarten; Schuurman, Filip; Fohrer, Nicola; Hering, Daniel; Wolter, Christian

    2015-01-01

    River biota are affected by global reach-scale pressures, but most approaches for predicting biota of rivers focus on river reach or segment scale processes and habitats. Moreover, these approaches do not consider long-term morphological changes that affect habitat conditions. In this study, a modelling framework was further developed and tested to assess the effect of pressures at different spatial scales on reach-scale habitat conditions and biota. Ecohydrological and 1D hydrodynamic models were used to predict discharge and water quality at the catchment scale and the resulting water level at the downstream end of a study reach. Long-term reach morphology was modelled using empirical regime equations, meander migration and 2D morphodynamic models. The respective flow and substrate conditions in the study reach were predicted using a 2D hydrodynamic model, and the suitability of these habitats was assessed with novel habitat models. In addition, dispersal models for fish and macroinvertebrates were developed to assess the re-colonization potential and to finally compare habitat suitability and the availability/ability of species to colonize these habitats. Applicability was tested and model performance was assessed by comparing observed and predicted conditions in the lowland Treene River in northern Germany. Technically, it was possible to link the different models, but future applications would benefit from the development of open source software for all modelling steps to enable fully automated model runs. Future research needs concern the physical modelling of long-term morphodynamics, feedback of biota (e.g., macrophytes) on abiotic habitat conditions, species interactions, and empirical data on the hydraulic habitat suitability and dispersal abilities of macroinvertebrates. The modelling framework is flexible and allows for including additional models and investigating different research and management questions, e.g., in climate impact research as well as

  11. The chemical and genetic characteristics of Szechuan pepper (Zanthoxylum bungeanum and Z. armatum cultivars and their suitable habitat

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li eXiang

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Szechuan peppers, famous for their unique sensation and flavor, are widely used as a food additive and traditional herbal medicine. Zanthoxylum bungeanum and Z. armatum are both commonly recognized as Szechuan peppers, but they have different tastes and effects. The chemical components, genetic characteristics, and suitable habitat of six cultivars were analyzed in this study. The results indicated that Z. armatum contained a larger proportion of volatile oil, whereas Z. bungeanum produced a more non-volatile ether extraction. The average content of volatile oil and non-volatile ether extract of Z. armatum were 11.84% and 11.63%, respectively, and the average content of volatile oil and non-volatile ether extract of Z. bungeanum were 6.46% and 14.23%, respectively. Combined with an internal transcribed spacer 2 (ITS2 sequence characters and chemical PCA results, six cultivars were classified into their own groups, for the two species in particular. The temperature in January and July were the most significant ecological factors influencing the contents of the Z. armatum volatile oil. However, annual precipitation, temperature in January and relevant humidity had a significant positive correlation with the content of non-volatile ether extract in Z. bungeanum. Thus, the most suitable areas for producing Z. bungeanum cultivars ranged from the Hengduan Mountains to the Ta-pa Mountains, and the regions suitable for Z. armatum cultivars were found to be in the Sichuan Basin and Dalou-Wu mountains. The predicted suitable habitat could be used as a preliminary test area for Szechuan pepper cultivar production.

  12. On Spatial Resolution in Habitat Models: Can Small-scale Forest Structure Explain Capercaillie Numbers?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ilse Storch

    2002-06-01

    Full Text Available This paper explores the effects of spatial resolution on the performance and applicability of habitat models in wildlife management and conservation. A Habitat Suitability Index (HSI model for the Capercaillie (Tetrao urogallus in the Bavarian Alps, Germany, is presented. The model was exclusively built on non-spatial, small-scale variables of forest structure and without any consideration of landscape patterns. The main goal was to assess whether a HSI model developed from small-scale habitat preferences can explain differences in population abundance at larger scales. To validate the model, habitat variables and indirect sign of Capercaillie use (such as feathers or feces were mapped in six study areas based on a total of 2901 20 m radius (for habitat variables and 5 m radius sample plots (for Capercaillie sign. First, the model's representation of Capercaillie habitat preferences was assessed. Habitat selection, as expressed by Ivlev's electivity index, was closely related to HSI scores, increased from poor to excellent habitat suitability, and was consistent across all study areas. Then, habitat use was related to HSI scores at different spatial scales. Capercaillie use was best predicted from HSI scores at the small scale. Lowering the spatial resolution of the model stepwise to 36-ha, 100-ha, 400-ha, and 2000-ha areas and relating Capercaillie use to aggregated HSI scores resulted in a deterioration of fit at larger scales. Most importantly, there were pronounced differences in Capercaillie abundance at the scale of study areas, which could not be explained by the HSI model. The results illustrate that even if a habitat model correctly reflects a species' smaller scale habitat preferences, its potential to predict population abundance at larger scales may remain limited.

  13. Forecasting Large-Scale Habitat Suitability of European Bustards under Climate Change: The Role of Environmental and Geographic Variables

    Science.gov (United States)

    Estrada, Alba; Delgado, M. Paula; Arroyo, Beatriz; Traba, Juan; Morales, Manuel B.

    2016-01-01

    We modelled the distribution of two vulnerable steppe birds, Otis tarda and Tetrax tetrax, in the Western Palearctic and projected their suitability up to the year 2080. We performed two types of models for each species: one that included environmental and geographic variables (space-included model) and a second one that only included environmental variables (space-excluded model). Our assumption was that ignoring geographic variables in the modelling procedure may result in inaccurate forecasting of species distributions. On the other hand, the inclusion of geographic variables may generate an artificial constraint on future projections. Our results show that space-included models performed better than space-excluded models. While distribution of suitable areas for T. tetrax in the future was approximately the same as at present in the space-included model, the space-excluded model predicted a pronounced geographic change of suitable areas for this species. In the case of O. tarda, the space-included model showed that many areas of current presence shifted to low or medium suitability in the future, whereas a northward expansion of intermediate suitable areas was predicted by the space-excluded one. According to the best models, current distribution of these species can restrict future distribution, probably due to dispersal constraints and site fidelity. Species ranges would be expected to shift gradually over the studied time period and, therefore, we consider it unlikely that most of the current distribution of these species in southern Europe will disappear in less than one hundred years. Therefore, populations currently occupying suitable areas should be a priority for conservation policies. Our results also show that climate-only models may have low explanatory power, and could benefit from adjustments using information on other environmental variables and biological traits; if the latter are not available, including the geographic predictor may improve the

  14. Forecasting Large-Scale Habitat Suitability of European Bustards under Climate Change: The Role of Environmental and Geographic Variables.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Estrada, Alba; Delgado, M Paula; Arroyo, Beatriz; Traba, Juan; Morales, Manuel B

    2016-01-01

    We modelled the distribution of two vulnerable steppe birds, Otis tarda and Tetrax tetrax, in the Western Palearctic and projected their suitability up to the year 2080. We performed two types of models for each species: one that included environmental and geographic variables (space-included model) and a second one that only included environmental variables (space-excluded model). Our assumption was that ignoring geographic variables in the modelling procedure may result in inaccurate forecasting of species distributions. On the other hand, the inclusion of geographic variables may generate an artificial constraint on future projections. Our results show that space-included models performed better than space-excluded models. While distribution of suitable areas for T. tetrax in the future was approximately the same as at present in the space-included model, the space-excluded model predicted a pronounced geographic change of suitable areas for this species. In the case of O. tarda, the space-included model showed that many areas of current presence shifted to low or medium suitability in the future, whereas a northward expansion of intermediate suitable areas was predicted by the space-excluded one. According to the best models, current distribution of these species can restrict future distribution, probably due to dispersal constraints and site fidelity. Species ranges would be expected to shift gradually over the studied time period and, therefore, we consider it unlikely that most of the current distribution of these species in southern Europe will disappear in less than one hundred years. Therefore, populations currently occupying suitable areas should be a priority for conservation policies. Our results also show that climate-only models may have low explanatory power, and could benefit from adjustments using information on other environmental variables and biological traits; if the latter are not available, including the geographic predictor may improve the

  15. Forecasting Large-Scale Habitat Suitability of European Bustards under Climate Change: The Role of Environmental and Geographic Variables.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alba Estrada

    Full Text Available We modelled the distribution of two vulnerable steppe birds, Otis tarda and Tetrax tetrax, in the Western Palearctic and projected their suitability up to the year 2080. We performed two types of models for each species: one that included environmental and geographic variables (space-included model and a second one that only included environmental variables (space-excluded model. Our assumption was that ignoring geographic variables in the modelling procedure may result in inaccurate forecasting of species distributions. On the other hand, the inclusion of geographic variables may generate an artificial constraint on future projections. Our results show that space-included models performed better than space-excluded models. While distribution of suitable areas for T. tetrax in the future was approximately the same as at present in the space-included model, the space-excluded model predicted a pronounced geographic change of suitable areas for this species. In the case of O. tarda, the space-included model showed that many areas of current presence shifted to low or medium suitability in the future, whereas a northward expansion of intermediate suitable areas was predicted by the space-excluded one. According to the best models, current distribution of these species can restrict future distribution, probably due to dispersal constraints and site fidelity. Species ranges would be expected to shift gradually over the studied time period and, therefore, we consider it unlikely that most of the current distribution of these species in southern Europe will disappear in less than one hundred years. Therefore, populations currently occupying suitable areas should be a priority for conservation policies. Our results also show that climate-only models may have low explanatory power, and could benefit from adjustments using information on other environmental variables and biological traits; if the latter are not available, including the geographic

  16. Skipjack Tuna Availability for Purse Seine Fisheries Is Driven by Suitable Feeding Habitat Dynamics in the Atlantic and Indian Oceans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jean-Noël Druon

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available An Ecological Niche model was developed for skipjack tuna (Katsuwonus pelamis, SKJ in the Eastern Central Atlantic Ocean (AO and Western Indian Ocean (IO using an extensive set of presence data collected by the European purse seine fleet (1998–2014. Chlorophyll-a fronts were used as proxy for food availability while mixed layer depth, sea surface temperature, dissolved oxygen, salinity, current intensity, and height anomaly variables were selected to describe SKJ's abiotic environmental preferences. The resultant ecological niche included both mesoscale eddy-type productive features that displayed latitudinal range in the IO to large scale upwelling systems that shrink and swell seasonally in the AO. Overall, 83% of all free swimming school sets (FSC and 75% of drifting fish aggregating device sets (dFAD that contained SKJ occurred within 25 km of favorable feeding habitat. In the AO, 34% of dFAD sets were made more than 100 km away from this habitat, mostly in the surface chlorophyll-a poor environment of the Guinea Current. These distant sets represent 10% of dFAD sets in the IO and 8% of all FSC sets. Our results suggest that the Mozambique Channel in the IO, with its simultaneously favorable feeding and spawning conditions, may seasonally offer a better SKJ nursery habitat than the Guinea Current which shows a substantially poorer feeding capacity. With the exception of this latter area, our results also suggest that fishing accessibility will be higher in months where the size of the favorable feeding habitats are reduced, likely because this reduction drives a geographical contraction in SKJ populations. The observed relationship between the annual size of favorable feeding habitat and both annual catch rates and total catches in the IO is consistent with the near-full exploitation of this stock that has occurred since the 2000s. Moreover, it suggests that annual habitat size could be used as an indicator of growth capacity for this

  17. Fuzzy modeling of farmers' knowledge for land suitability classification

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sicat, R.S.; Carranza, E.J.M.; Nidumolu, U.B.

    2005-01-01

    In a case study, we demonstrate fuzzy modeling of farmers' knowledge (FK) for agricultural land suitability classification using GIS. Capture of FK was through rapid rural participatory approach. The farmer respondents consider, in order of decreasing importance, cropping season, soil color, soil

  18. Projections of suitable habitat for rare species under global warming scenarios

    Science.gov (United States)

    F. Thomas Ledig; Gerald E. Rehfeldt; Cuauhtemoc Saenz-Romero; Flores-Lopez Celestino

    2010-01-01

    Premise of the study: Modeling the contemporary and future climate niche for rare plants is a major hurdle in conservation, yet such projections are necessary to prevent extinctions that may result from climate change. Methods: We used recently developed spline climatic models and modifi ed Random Forests...

  19. Evaluating the habitat capability model for Merriam's turkeys

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mark A. Rumble; Stanley H. Anderson

    1995-01-01

    Habitat capability (HABCAP) models for wildlife assist land managers in predicting the consequences of their management decisions. Models must be tested and refined prior to using them in management planning. We tested the predicted patterns of habitat selection of the R2 HABCAP model using observed patterns of habitats selected by radio-marked Merriam’s turkey (

  20. Using multiscale spatial models to assess potential surrogate habitat for an imperiled reptile.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer M Fill

    Full Text Available In evaluating conservation and management options for species, practitioners might consider surrogate habitats at multiple scales when estimating available habitat or modeling species' potential distributions based on suitable habitats, especially when native environments are rare. Species' dependence on surrogates likely increases as optimal habitat is degraded and lost due to anthropogenic landscape change, and thus surrogate habitats may be vital for an imperiled species' survival in highly modified landscapes. We used spatial habitat models to examine a potential surrogate habitat for an imperiled ambush predator (eastern diamondback rattlesnake, Crotalus adamanteus; EDB at two scales. The EDB is an apex predator indigenous to imperiled longleaf pine ecosystems (Pinus palustris of the southeastern United States. Loss of native open-canopy pine savannas and woodlands has been suggested as the principal cause of the species' extensive decline. We examined EDB habitat selection in the Coastal Plain tidewater region to evaluate the role of marsh as a potential surrogate habitat and to further quantify the species' habitat requirements at two scales: home range (HR and within the home range (WHR. We studied EDBs using radiotelemetry and employed an information-theoretic approach and logistic regression to model habitat selection as use vs.We failed to detect a positive association with marsh as a surrogate habitat at the HR scale; rather, EDBs exhibited significantly negative associations with all landscape patches except pine savanna. Within home range selection was characterized by a negative association with forest and a positive association with ground cover, which suggests that EDBs may use surrogate habitats of similar structure, including marsh, within their home ranges. While our HR analysis did not support tidal marsh as a surrogate habitat, marsh may still provide resources for EDBs at smaller scales.

  1. EXPERT MODEL OF LAND SUITABILITY ASSESSMENT FOR CROPS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Boris Đurđević

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available A total of 17404 soil samples (2003rd-2009th year were analysed in the eastern Croatia. The largest number of soil samples belongs to the Osijek-Baranya county, which together with both Eastern sugar beet Factories (Osijek and Županja, conduct the soil fertility control (~4200 samples/yr.. Computer model suitability assessment for crops, supported by GIS, proved to be fast, efficient enough reliable in terms of the number of analyzed soil samples. It allows the visualization of the agricultural area and prediction of its production properties for the purposes of analysis, planning and rationalization of agricultural production. With more precise data about the soil (soil, climate and reliable Digital Soil Map of Croatia, the model could be an acceptable, not only to evaluate the suitability for growing different crops but also their need for fertilizer, necessary machinery, repairs (liming, and other measures of organic matter input. The abovementioned aims to eliminate or reduce effects of limiting factors in primary agricultural production. Assessment of the relative benefits of soil presented by computer model for the crops production and geostatistical method kriging in the Osijek-Baranya county showed: 1 Average soil suitability being 60.06 percent. 2 Kriging predicted that 51751 ha (17.16% are of limited resources (N1 for growing crops whereas a 86142 ha (28.57% of land is limited suitably (S3, b 132789 ha (44.04% are moderately suitable (S2 and c 30772 ha (10.28% are of excellent fertility (S1. A large number of eastern Croatian land data showed that the computer-geostatistical model for determination of soil benefits for growing crops was automated, fast and simple to use and suitable for the implementation of GIS and automatically downloading the necessary benefit indicators from the input base (land, analytical and climate as well as data from the digital soil maps able to: a visualize the suitability for soil tillage, b predict the

  2. Habitat suitability of patch types: A case study of the Yosemite toad

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christina T. Liang; Thomas J. Stohlgren

    2011-01-01

    Understanding patch variability is crucial in understanding the spatial population structure of wildlife species, especially for rare or threatened species.We used a well-tested maximum entropy species distribution model (Maxent) to map the Yosemite toad (Anaxyrus (= Bufo) canorus) in the Sierra Nevada...

  3. Range-Wide Meta-Analysis of Red-Cockaded Woodpecker Foraging Habitat Suitability

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-12-31

    facilitate recovery and increase population sizes. The standard for managed stability, on the other hand, was not designed to increase population size, but to... designate these categories. Eglin AFB provided us with Eglin Model scores in the form of a geodatabase that covered the study site. Space use analysis...the niche gestalt of the red-cockaded woodpecker in longleaf pine forests. Ecological Applications 11:854-870. Koper, N., and M. Manseau. 2009

  4. A Suitable Artificial Intelligence Model for Inventory Level Optimization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tereza Sustrova

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Purpose of the article: To examine suitable methods of artificial neural networks and their application in business operations, specifically to the supply chain management. The article discusses construction of an artificial neural networks model that can be used to facilitate optimization of inventory level and thus improve the ordering system and inventory management. For the data analysis from the area of wholesale trade with connecting material is used. Methodology/methods: Methods used in the paper consists especially of artificial neural networks and ANN-based modelling. For data analysis and preprocessing, MS Office Excel software is used. As an instrument for neural network forecasting MathWorks MATLAB Neural Network Tool was used. Deductive quantitative methods for research are also used. Scientific aim: The effort is directed at finding whether the method of prediction using artificial neural networks is suitable as a tool for enhancing the ordering system of an enterprise. The research also focuses on finding what architecture of the artificial neural networks model is the most suitable for subsequent prediction. Findings: Artificial neural networks models can be used for inventory management and lot-sizing problem successfully. A network with the TRAINGDX training function and TANSIG transfer function and 6-8-1 architecture can be considered the most suitable for artificial neural network, as it shows the best results for subsequent prediction. Conclusions: It can be concluded that the created model of artificial neural network can be successfully used for predicting order size and therefore for improving the order cycle of an enterprise. Conclusions resulting from the paper are beneficial for further research.

  5. Seasonal Habitat Patterns of Japanese Common Squid (Todarodes Pacificus Inferred from Satellite-Based Species Distribution Models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Irene D. Alabia

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available The understanding of the spatio-temporal distributions of the species habitat in the marine environment is central to effectual resource management and conservation. Here, we examined the potential habitat distributions of Japanese common squid (Todarodes pacificus in the Sea of Japan during a four-year period. The seasonal patterns of preferential habitat were inferred from species distribution models, built using squid occurrences detected from night-time visible images and remotely-sensed environmental factors. The predicted squid habitat (i.e., areas with high habitat suitability revealed strong seasonal variability, characterized by a reduction of potential habitat, confined off of the southern part of the basin during the winter–spring period (December–May. Apparent expansion of preferential habitat occurred during summer–autumn months (June–November, concurrent with the formation of highly suitable habitat patches in certain regions of the Sea of Japan. These habitat distribution patterns were in response to changes in oceanographic conditions and synchronous with seasonal migration of squid. Moreover, the most important variables regulating the spatio-temporal patterns of suitable habitat were sea surface temperature, depth, sea surface height anomaly, and eddy kinetic energy. These variables could affect the habitat distributions through their impacts on growth and survival of squid, local nutrient transport, and the availability of favorable spawning and feeding grounds.

  6. Relevance of multiple spatial scales in habitat models: A case study with amphibians and grasshoppers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Altmoos, Michael; Henle, Klaus

    2010-11-01

    Habitat models for animal species are important tools in conservation planning. We assessed the need to consider several scales in a case study for three amphibian and two grasshopper species in the post-mining landscapes near Leipzig (Germany). The two species groups were selected because habitat analyses for grasshoppers are usually conducted on one scale only whereas amphibians are thought to depend on more than one spatial scale. First, we analysed how the preference to single habitat variables changed across nested scales. Most environmental variables were only significant for a habitat model on one or two scales, with the smallest scale being particularly important. On larger scales, other variables became significant, which cannot be recognized on lower scales. Similar preferences across scales occurred in only 13 out of 79 cases and in 3 out of 79 cases the preference and avoidance for the same variable were even reversed among scales. Second, we developed habitat models by using a logistic regression on every scale and for all combinations of scales and analysed how the quality of habitat models changed with the scales considered. To achieve a sufficient accuracy of the habitat models with a minimum number of variables, at least two scales were required for all species except for Bufo viridis, for which a single scale, the microscale, was sufficient. Only for the European tree frog ( Hyla arborea), at least three scales were required. The results indicate that the quality of habitat models increases with the number of surveyed variables and with the number of scales, but costs increase too. Searching for simplifications in multi-scaled habitat models, we suggest that 2 or 3 scales should be a suitable trade-off, when attempting to define a suitable microscale.

  7. Habitat connectivity and ecosystem productivity: implications from a simple model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cloern, J.E.

    2007-01-01

    The import of resources (food, nutrients) sustains biological production and food webs in resource-limited habitats. Resource export from donor habitats subsidizes production in recipient habitats, but the ecosystem-scale consequences of resource translocation are generally unknown. Here, I use a nutrient-phytoplankton-zooplankton model to show how dispersive connectivity between a shallow autotrophic habitat and a deep heterotrophic pelagic habitat can amplify overall system production in metazoan food webs. This result derives from the finite capacity of suspension feeders to capture and assimilate food particles: excess primary production in closed autotrophic habitats cannot be assimilated by consumers; however, if excess phytoplankton production is exported to food-limited heterotrophic habitats, it can be assimilated by zooplankton to support additional secondary production. Transport of regenerated nutrients from heterotrophic to autotrophic habitats sustains higher system primary production. These simulation results imply that the ecosystem-scale efficiency of nutrient transformation into metazoan biomass can be constrained by the rate of resource exchange across habitats and that it is optimized when the transport rate matches the growth rate of primary producers. Slower transport (i.e., reduced connectivity) leads to nutrient limitation of primary production in autotrophic habitats and food limitation of secondary production in heterotrophic habitats. Habitat fragmentation can therefore impose energetic constraints on the carrying capacity of aquatic ecosystems. The outcomes of ecosystem restoration through habitat creation will be determined by both functions provided by newly created aquatic habitats and the rates of hydraulic connectivity between them.

  8. Habitat-specific breeder survival of Florida Scrub-Jays: Inferences from multistate models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Breininger, D.R.; Nichols, J.D.; Carter, G.M.; Oddy, D.M.

    2009-01-01

    Quantifying habitat-specific survival and changes in habitat quality within disturbance-prone habitats is critical for understanding population dynamics and variation in fitness, and for managing degraded ecosystems. We used 18 years of color-banding data and multistate capture-recapture models to test whether habitat quality within territories influences survival and detection probability of breeding Florida Scrub-Jays (Aphelocoma coerulescens) and to estimate bird transition probabilities from one territory quality state to another. Our study sites were along central Florida's Atlantic coast and included two of the four largest metapopulations within the species range. We developed Markov models for habitat transitions and compared these to bird transition probabilities. Florida Scrub-Jay detection probabilities ranged from 0.88 in the tall territory state to 0.99 in the optimal state; detection probabilities were intermediate in the short state. Transition probabilities were similar for birds and habitat in grid cells mapped independently of birds. Thus, bird transitions resulted primarily from habitat transitions between states over time and not from bird movement. Survival ranged from 0.71 in the short state to 0.82 in the optimal state, with tall states being intermediate. We conclude that average Florida Scrub-Jay survival will remain at levels that lead to continued population declines because most current habitat quality is only marginally suitable across most of the species range. Improvements in habitat are likely to be slow and difficult because tall states are resistant to change and the optimal state represents an intermediate transitional stage. The multistate modeling approach to quantifying survival and habitat transition probabilities is useful for quantifying habitat transition probabilities and comparing them to bird transition probabilities to test for habitat selection in dynamic environments. ?? 2009 by the Ecological society ot America.

  9. Land-use change reduces habitat suitability for supporting managed honey bee colonies in the Northern Great Plains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Otto, Clint R.; Roth, Cali; Carlson, Benjamin; Smart, Matthew

    2016-01-01

    Human reliance on insect pollination services continues to increase even as pollinator populations exhibit global declines. Increased commodity crop prices and federal subsidies for biofuel crops, such as corn and soybeans, have contributed to rapid land-use change in the US Northern Great Plains (NGP), changes that may jeopardize habitat for honey bees in a part of the country that supports >40% of the US colony stock. We investigated changes in biofuel crop production and grassland land covers surrounding ∼18,000 registered commercial apiaries in North and South Dakota from 2006 to 2014. We then developed habitat selection models to identify remotely sensed land-cover and land-use features that influence apiary site selection by Dakota beekeepers. Our study demonstrates a continual increase in biofuel crops, totaling 1.2 Mha, around registered apiary locations in North and South Dakota. Such crops were avoided by commercial beekeepers when selecting apiary sites in this region. Furthermore, our analysis reveals how grasslands that beekeepers target when selecting commercial apiary locations are becoming less common in eastern North and South Dakota, changes that may have lasting impact on pollinator conservation efforts. Our study highlights how land-use change in the NGP is altering the landscape in ways that are seemingly less conducive to beekeeping. Our models can be used to guide future conservation efforts highlighted in the US national pollinator health strategy by identifying areas that support high densities of commercial apiaries and that have exhibited significant land-use changes.

  10. Using a coupled eco-hydrodynamic model to predict habitat for target species following dam removal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomsic, C.A.; Granata, T.C.; Murphy, R.P.; Livchak, C.J.

    2007-01-01

    A habitat suitability index (HSI) model was developed for a water quality sensitive fish (Greater Redhorse) and macroinvertebrate (Plecoptera) species to determine the restoration success of the St. John Dam removal for the Sandusky River (Ohio). An ArcGIS?? model was created for pre- and post-dam removal scenarios. Inputs to the HSI model consist of substrate distributions from river surveys, and water level and velocity time series, outputs from a hydrodynamic model. The ArcGIS?? model predicted habitat suitability indices at 45 river cross-sections in the hydrodynamic model. The model was programmed to produce polygon layers, using graphical user interfaces that were displayed in the ArcGIS?? environment. The results of the model clearly show an increase of habitat suitability from pre- to post-dam removal periods and in the former reservoir. The change in suitability of the model is attributed mostly to the change in depth in the river following the dam removal for both the fish and invertebrate species. The results of the invertebrate model followed the same positive trend as species enumerations from the river basin. ?? 2007 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Aedes aegypti Global Suitability Maps Using a Water Container Energy Balance Model for Dengue Risk Applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steinhoff, D.

    2015-12-01

    Dengue infections are estimated to total nearly 400 million per year worldwide, with both the geographic range and the magnitude of infections having increased in the past 50 years. The primary dengue vector mosquito Aedes aegypti is closely associated with humans. It lives exclusively in urban and semi-urban areas, preferentially bites humans, and spends its developmental stages in artificial water containers. Climate regulates the development of Ae. aegypti immature mosquitoes in artificial containers. Potential containers for Ae. aegypti immature development include, but are not limited to, small sundry items (e.g., bottles, cans, plastic containers), buckets, tires, barrels, tanks, and cisterns. Successful development of immature mosquitoes from eggs to larvae, pupae, and eventually adults is largely dependent on the availability of water and the thermal properties of the water in the containers. Recent work has shown that physics-based approaches toward modeling container water properties are promising for resolving the complexities of container water dynamics and the effects on immature mosquito development. An energy balance container model developed by the author, termed the Water Height And Temperature in Container Habitats Energy Model (WHATCH'EM), solves for water temperature and height for user-specified containers with readily available weather data. Here we use WHATCH'EM with NASA Earth Science products used as input to construct global suitability maps based on established water temperature ranges for immature Ae. aegypti mosquitoes. A proxy for dengue risk is provided from habitat suitability, but also population estimates, as Ae. aegypti is closely associated with human activity. NASA gridded Global Population of the World data is used to mask out rural areas with low dengue risk. Suitability maps are illustrated for a variety of containers (size, material, color) and shading scenarios.

  12. Separation of the bioclimatic spaces of Himalayan tree rhododendron species predicted by ensemble suitability models

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    Sailesh Ranjitkar

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available The tree rhododendrons include the most widely distributed Himalayan Rhododendron species belonging to the subsection Arborea. Distributions of two members of this sub-species were modelled using bioclimatic data for current conditions (1950–2000. A subset of the least correlated bioclimatic variables was used for ecological niche modelling (ENM. We used an ENM ensemble method in the BiodiversityR R-package to map the suitable climatic space for tree rhododendrons based on 217 point location records. Ensemble bioclimatic models for tree rhododendrons had high predictive power with bioclimatic variables, which also separated the climatic spaces for the two species. Tree rhododendrons were found occurring in a wide range of climate and the distributional limits were associated with isothermality, temperature ranges, temperature of the wettest quarter, and precipitation of the warmest quarter of the year. The most suitable climatic space for tree rhododendrons was predicted to be in western Yunnan, China, with suitability declining towards the west and east. Its occurrence in a wide range of climatic settings with highly dissected habitats speaks to the adaptive capacity of the species, which might open up future options for their conservation planning in regions where they are listed as threatened.

  13. Modeling of Iranian Cheetah Habitat using Ecological Niche Factor Analysis (Case Study: Dare Anjir Wildlife Refuge

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    N. Zamani

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Evaluation of habitat sustainability indexes is essential in wildlife management and conservation of rare species. Suitable habitats are required in wildlife managements and conservation also, they increase reproduction and survival rate of species. In this study in order to mapping habitat sustainability and recognizing habitat requirements of Iranian Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus venaticus, field data from Dare Anjir  wildlife refuge were collected since autumn 2009 until summer 2011. Ecological Niche Factor Analysis approach has been used to develop habitat suitability model. In this method primary maps of  habitat variables including elevation, slope, aspect, vegetation cover, distance from water sources and environmental monitoring stations have been produced by Idrisi and Biomapper software and imported in Biomapper. The output scores obtained from the analysis showed that Iranian cheetah tends to mountain areas where has more topographical features for camouflage in order to hunting, and northern aspects which have more humidity, denser vegetation cover and more preys . Our result showed that the Iranian cheetah has medium niche width and prefer marginal habitats.

  14. Modelling recent and future climatic suitability for fasciolosis in Europe

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    Cyril Caminade

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Fasciola hepatica is a parasitic worm responsible for fasciolosis in grazed ruminants in Europe. The free-living stages of this parasite are sensitive to temperature and soil moisture, as are the intermediate snail hosts the parasite depends on for its life-cycle. We used a climate-driven disease model in order to assess the impact of recent and potential future climate changes on the incidence of fasciolosis and to estimate the related uncertainties at the scale of the European landmass. The current climate appears to be highly suitable for fasciolosis throughout the European Union with the exception of some parts of the Mediterranean region. Simulated climatic suitability for fasciolosis significantly increased during the 2000s in central and northwestern Europe, which is consistent with an observed increased in ruminant infections. The simulation showed that recent trends are likely to continue in the future with the estimated pattern of climate change for northern Europe, possibly extending the season suitable for development of the parasite in the environment by up to four months. For southern Europe, the simulated burden of disease may be lower, but the projected climate change will increase the risk during the winter months, since the simulated changes in temperature and moisture support the development of the free-living and intra-molluscan stages between November and March. In the event of predicted climate change, F. hepatica will present a serious risk to the health, welfare and productivity of all ruminant livestock. Improved, bespoke control programmes, both at farm and region levels, will then become imperative if problems, such as resistance of the parasite associated with increased drug use, are to be mitigated.

  15. Systems Modeling to Improve River, Riparian, and Wetland Habitat Quality and Area

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alafifi, A.

    2016-12-01

    The suitability of watershed habitat to support the livelihood of its biota primarily depends on managing flow. Ecological restoration requires finding opportunities to reallocate available water in a watershed to increase ecological benefits and maintain other beneficial uses. We present the Watershed Area of Suitable Habitat (WASH) systems model that recommends reservoir releases, streamflows, and water allocations throughout a watershed to maximize the ecosystem habitat quality. WASH embeds and aggregates area-weighted metrics for aquatic, floodplain, and wetland habitat components as an ecosystem objective to maximize, while maintaining water deliveries for domestic and agricultural uses, mass balance, and available budget for restoration actions. The metrics add spatial and temporal functionality and area coverage to traditional habitat quality indexes and can accommodate multiple species of concern. We apply the WASH model to the Utah portion of the Bear River watershed which includes 8 demand sites, 5 reservoirs and 37 nodes between the Utah-Idaho state line and the Great Salt Lake. We recommend water allocations to improve current conservation efforts and show tradeoffs between human and ecosystem uses of water. WASH results are displayed on an open-source web mapping application that allows stakeholders to access, visualize, and interact with the model data and results and compare current and model-recommended operations. Results show that the Bear River is largely developed and appropriated for human water uses. However, increasing reservoirs winter and early spring releases and minimizing late spring spill volumes can significantly improve habitat quality without harming agricultural or urban water users. The spatial and temporal reallocation of spring spills to environmental uses creates additional 70 thousand acres of suitable habitat in the watershed without harming human users. WASH also quantifies the potential environmental gains and losses from

  16. Accounting for microbial habitats in modeling soil organic matter dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chenu, Claire; Garnier, Patricia; Nunan, Naoise; Pot, Valérie; Raynaud, Xavier; Vieublé, Laure; Otten, Wilfred; Falconer, Ruth; Monga, Olivier

    2017-04-01

    The extreme heterogeneity of soils constituents, architecture and inhabitants at the microscopic scale is increasingly recognized. Microbial communities exist and are active in a complex 3-D physical framework of mineral and organic particles defining pores of various sizes, more or less inter-connected. This results in a frequent spatial disconnection between soil carbon, energy sources and the decomposer organisms and a variety of microhabitats that are more or less suitable for microbial growth and activity. However, current biogeochemical models account for C dynamics at the macroscale (cm, m) and consider time- and spatially averaged relationships between microbial activity and soil characteristics. Different modelling approaches have intended to account for this microscale heterogeneity, based either on considering aggregates as surrogates for microbial habitats, or pores. Innovative modelling approaches are based on an explicit representation of soil structure at the fine scale, i.e. at µm to mm scales: pore architecture and their saturation with water, localization of organic resources and of microorganisms. Three recent models are presented here, that describe the heterotrophic activity of either bacteria or fungi and are based upon different strategies to represent the complex soil pore system (Mosaic, LBios and µFun). These models allow to hierarchize factors of microbial activity in soil's heterogeneous architecture. Present limits of these approaches and challenges are presented, regarding the extensive information required on soils at the microscale and to up-scale microbial functioning from the pore to the core scale.

  17. Habitat fragmentation and reproductive success: a structural equation modelling approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le Tortorec, Eric; Helle, Samuli; Käyhkö, Niina; Suorsa, Petri; Huhta, Esa; Hakkarainen, Harri

    2013-09-01

    1. There is great interest on the effects of habitat fragmentation, whereby habitat is lost and the spatial configuration of remaining habitat patches is altered, on individual breeding performance. However, we still lack consensus of how this important process affects reproductive success, and whether its effects are mainly due to reduced fecundity or nestling survival. 2. The main reason for this may be the way that habitat fragmentation has been previously modelled. Studies have treated habitat loss and altered spatial configuration as two independent processes instead of as one hierarchical and interdependent process, and therefore have not been able to consider the relative direct and indirect effects of habitat loss and altered spatial configuration. 3. We investigated how habitat (i.e. old forest) fragmentation, caused by intense forest harvesting at the territory and landscape scales, is associated with the number of fledged offspring of an area-sensitive passerine, the Eurasian treecreeper (Certhia familiaris). We used structural equation modelling (SEM) to examine the complex hierarchical associations between habitat loss and altered spatial configuration on the number of fledged offspring, by controlling for individual condition and weather conditions during incubation. 4. Against generally held expectations, treecreeper reproductive success did not show a significant association with habitat fragmentation measured at the territory scale. Instead, our analyses suggested that an increasing amount of habitat at the landscape scale caused a significant increase in nest predation rates, leading to reduced reproductive success. This effect operated directly on nest predation rates, instead of acting indirectly through altered spatial configuration. 5. Because habitat amount and configuration are inherently strongly collinear, particularly when multiple scales are considered, our study demonstrates the usefulness of a SEM approach for hierarchical partitioning

  18. Where to Combat Shrub Encroachment in Alpine Timberline Ecosystems: Combining Remotely-Sensed Vegetation Information with Species Habitat Modelling.

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    Veronika Braunisch

    Full Text Available In many cultural landscapes, the abandonment of traditional grazing leads to encroachment of pastures by woody plants, which reduces habitat heterogeneity and impacts biodiversity typical of semi-open habitats. We developed a framework of mutually interacting spatial models to locate areas where shrub encroachment in Alpine treeline ecosystems deteriorates vulnerable species' habitat, using black grouse Tetrao tetrix (L. in the Swiss Alps as a study model. Combining field observations and remote-sensing information we 1 identified and located the six predominant treeline vegetation types; 2 modelled current black grouse breeding habitat as a function thereof so as to derive optimal habitat profiles; 3 simulated from these profiles the theoretical spatial extension of breeding habitat when assuming optimal vegetation conditions throughout; and used the discrepancy between (2 and (3 to 4 locate major aggregations of homogeneous shrub vegetation in otherwise suitable breeding habitat as priority sites for habitat restoration. All six vegetation types (alpine pasture, coniferous forest, Alnus viridis (Chaix, Rhododendron-dominated, Juniperus-dominated and mixed heathland were predicted with high accuracy (AUC >0.9. Breeding black grouse preferred a heterogeneous mosaic of vegetation types, with none exceeding 50% cover. While 15% of the timberline belt currently offered suitable breeding habitat, twice that fraction (29% would potentially be suitable when assuming optimal shrub and ground vegetation conditions throughout the study area. Yet, only 10% of this difference was attributed to habitat deterioration by shrub-encroachment of dense heathland (all types 5.2% and Alnus viridis (4.8%. The presented method provides both a general, large-scale assessment of areas covered by dense shrub vegetation as well as specific target values and priority areas for habitat restoration related to a selected target organism. This facilitates optimizing the

  19. Invasion establishment and habitat suitability of Chromolaena odorata (L. King and Robinson over time and space in the western Himalayan forests of India

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    Gautam Mandal

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Habitat suitability assessment of the invasive species Chromolaena odorata (L. King and Robinson from Himalayan forests reveals some interesting findings and conclusions. At different study sites, 29 of 72 species were exotic and invasive and comprised 21 genera and eight families. Indigenous species accounted for 59% of the total species and comprised 26 genera and 11 families. Perennials outnumbered the annuals in all study sites. Chromolaena odorata and Lantana camara L. were the only invasive species that were common to all sites with high importance value index values. The present work reveals that sites with high biotic pressure, maximum temperature variation, open forest canopy, and free from herbivory are the most suitable habitat for the growth of C. odorata. An elevated level of phosphorus, potassium, magnesium, soil organic matter, and nitrogen and acidic soil in all invaded sites are possible reasons for further invasion of C. odorata.

  20. Assessment of oyster habitat in Mobile Bay, Alabama using index modeling, geographic information systems, and computational fluid dynamic modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodgers, Leonard James

    The need to quantify habitat and to index the salient qualities of habitat is growing in importance in resource management. One method is to use habitat suitability index models (HSI) to spatially delineate the essential habitat through its key features. This dissertation implements an HSI for Eastern oysters (Crassostrea virginica) in an estuarine environment. Typically, extremely simplified methods have been incorporated into HSI models, such as, using the mean of monthly water samples from a very limited number of fixed sights. These methods are inadequate. How then should the investigator estimate highly dynamic spatial variables such as: temperature, salinity, and hydraulic flux? The current study employed a two dimensional computational fluid dynamic (CFD) model to calculate a measure of central tendency and a variance for major hydrodynamic variables of oyster habitat. Spatial data from several sources were combined with the CFD to determine suitability indices. Using the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service geometric mean method an HSI was calculated. Dynamic HSI models were calculated annually and seasonally over three river discharge scenarios to test and demonstrate the concept. The results were plotted using a Geographical Information System (GIS). The model functioned as expected, and the results conformed to the observed distributions and abundances of oysters in Mobile Bay. This methodology, while complex and computer intensive, is potentially useful in resource management and planning. It could also be used as a predictive tool, forecasting the effects of such things as channel dredging, dam discharge, and possibly even global climate change on living estuarine resources.

  1. Improving wildlife habitat model performance: Sensitivity to the scale and detail of vegetation measurements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, Lance Jay, Jr.

    than models that included detailed vegetation composition and structure information. This result was supported in multiple analyses, including forest structural estimates generated from satellite imagery. There are distinct patterns of model accuracy and especially commission and omission errors that are linked to species ecological traits and method of error calculation. These patterns are illustrated with figures that relate the model results to a conceptual relationship between a species' probability of presence at a given location and the suitability of the habitat at that location. The correct application of accuracy assessment is key to correctly understanding the utility of a model and to avoid discounting a model as useless when it is in fact informative. I also compared the relative accuracy of wildlife habitat relationship models built with three different hierarchical vegetation classifications. Despite major differences in the distribution of field sites among the classes, there was little difference in terms of bird habitat model accuracy between the classifications at any given level. The number of classes (level of the hierarchy) appeared to be more important to bird habitat model accuracy than did the nature of the classification itself.

  2. Common dolphins in the Alboran Sea: Facing a reduction in their suitable habitat due to an increase in Sea surface temperature

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cañadas, A.; Vázquez, J. A.

    2017-07-01

    The short-beaked common dolphin Mediterranean subpopulation appears to have suffered a steep decline over recent decades and was listed in 2003 as 'Endangered' in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. The Alboran Sea is the last region in the Mediterranean where it is still abundant. In this study, we relate features of this species' ecology to climate change, focusing on distribution and density. This work used a two decades-long dataset on the common dolphin in the Alboran Sea and a time series of environmental changes. Once established, these relationships were used in conjunction with some simulated scenarios of environmental change to predict the potential effects of further change on these species over the next 100 years. Two approaches were used: 1) projection from a regression line from local variation, and 2) a HadCM3 climate model with time-varying anthropogenic effects. Generalized Additive Models were used to model the relationship between density of the animals with SST and other environmental covariates. Results from both approaches were very similar. The predictions of density from the regression line fell within the ranges from the HadCM3 climate model, the first being based on local and locally, point to point, differentiated information, which lead us to consider the first approach as the best for this area. At the small spatial scale of the Alboran Sea and Gulf of Vera, an increase in SST will potentially yield a reduction in suitable habitat for common dolphins, with a progressive reduction in density from east to west.

  3. Nesting Habitat Suitability for Olive Ridley Turtles (Lepidochelys Olivacea at the Gahirmatha Rookery, Odisha Coast of India

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    Satyaranjan BEHERA

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available The changes in the beach dynamics at Gahirmatha sea turtle rookery along Odisha coast of India have forced the olive ridley turtles to nests in a non-conducive environment. In the recent past, non-availability of nesting beach due to erosion was hypothesized to be one of the major reasons for non-occurrence of arribada at Gahirmatha. This paper reviews the current status of nesting habitat for olive ridley turtles at Gahirmatha and suggests onshore and offshore developmental activities close to Gahirmatha rookery should be monitored efficiently so that future arribada at this rookery should not be troubled due to habitat destruction.

  4. Modeling predator habitat to enhance reintroduction planning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shiloh M. Halsey; William J. Zielinski; Robert M. Scheller

    2015-01-01

    Context The success of species reintroduction often depends on predation risk and spatial estimates of predator habitat. The fisher (Pekania pennanti) is a species of conservation concern and populations in the western United States have declined substantially in the last century. Reintroduction plans are underway, but the ability...

  5. Modeling effects of conservation grassland losses on amphibian habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mushet, David M.; Neau, Jordan L.; Euliss, Ned H.

    2014-01-01

    Amphibians provide many ecosystem services valued by society. However, populations have declined globally with most declines linked to habitat change. Wetlands and surrounding terrestrial grasslands form habitat for amphibians in the North American Prairie Pothole Region (PPR). Wetland drainage and grassland conversion have destroyed or degraded much amphibian habitat in the PPR. However, conservation grasslands can provide alternate habitat. In the United States, the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) is the largest program maintaining grasslands on agricultural lands. We used an ecosystem services model (InVEST) parameterized for the PPR to quantify amphibian habitat over a six-year period (2007–2012). We then quantified changes in availability of amphibian habitat under various land-cover scenarios representing incremental losses (10%, 25%, 50%, 75%, and 100%) of CRP grasslands from 2012 levels. The area of optimal amphibian habitat in the four PPR ecoregions modeled (i.e., Northern Glaciated Plains, Northwestern Glaciated Plains, Lake Agassiz Plain, Des Moines Lobe) declined by approximately 22%, from 3.8 million ha in 2007 to 2.9 million ha in 2012. These losses were driven by the conversion of CRP grasslands to croplands, primarily for corn and soybean production. Our modeling identified an additional 0.8 million ha (26%) of optimal amphibian habitat that would be lost if remaining CRP lands are returned to crop production. An economic climate favoring commodity production over conservation has resulted in substantial losses of amphibian habitat across the PPR that will likely continue into the future. Other regions of the world face similar challenges to maintaining amphibian habitats.

  6. A restoration suitability index model for the eastern oyster (Crassostrea virginica in the Mission-Aransas Estuary, TX, USA.

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    Jennifer Beseres Pollack

    Full Text Available Oyster reefs are one of the most threatened marine habitats on earth, with habitat loss resulting from water quality degradation, coastal development, destructive fishing practices, overfishing, and storm impacts. For successful and sustainable oyster reef restoration efforts, it is necessary to choose sites that support long-term growth and survival of oysters. Selection of suitable sites is critically important as it can greatly influence mortality factors and may largely determine the ultimate success of the restoration project. The application of Geographic Information Systems (GIS provides an effective methodology for identifying suitable sites for oyster reef restoration and removes much of the uncertainty involved in the sometimes trial and error selection process. This approach also provides an objective and quantitative tool for planning future oyster reef restoration efforts. The aim of this study was to develop a restoration suitability index model and reef quality index model to characterize locations based on their potential for successful reef restoration within the Mission-Aransas Estuary, Texas, USA. The restoration suitability index model focuses on salinity, temperature, turbidity, dissolved oxygen, and depth, while the reef quality index model focuses on abundance of live oysters, dead shell, and spat. Size-specific Perkinsus marinus infection levels were mapped to illustrate general disease trends. This application was effective in identifying suitable sites for oyster reef restoration, is flexible in its use, and provides a mechanism for considering alternative approaches. The end product is a practical decision-support tool that can be used by coastal resource managers to improve oyster restoration efforts. As oyster reef restoration activities continue at small and large-scales, site selection criteria are critical for assisting stakeholders and managers and for maximizing long-term sustainability of oyster resources.

  7. Habitat suitability, threats and conservation strategies of Hump-nosed Pit Viper Hypnale hymnal Merrem (Reptilia: Viperidae found in Western Ghats, Goa, India

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    N.S. Sawant

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Recent studies indicate that most species are best conserved in their natural community, which results in niche conservation. Depletion of any species is an irreversible change. In the present study the habitat ecology, threats and conservation strategies for the Hump-nosed Pit Viper Hypnale hypnale are suggested. The present study was undertaken in some protected areas (PAs of Goa and the cashew plantations adjoining these PAs. H. hypnale prefers cool and moist places; most of the females of this species are found to spend the period from post monsoon to late summer in the cashew plantations adjoining and within the PAs, making them more susceptible to anthropogenic threats. We conclude that this pattern of seasonal changes in habitat use is mostly a consequence of niche conservation. However, this preference for a particular micro-habitat emphasizes the importance for the conservation of this snake population and although the most suitable habitat in the Western Ghats, for this species is included in the protected areas, specific guidelines are needed to assess conservation needs.

  8. Testing Cort-Fitness and Cort-Adaptation hypotheses in a habitat suitability gradient for roe deer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Escribano-Avila, Gema; Pettorelli, Nathalie; Virgós, Emilio; Lara-Romero, Carlos; Lozano, Jorge; Barja, Isabel; Cuadra, Felipe S.; Puerta, Marisa

    2013-11-01

    According to the Cort-Fitness Hypothesis, higher stress levels (glucocorticoids) in vertebrates are correlated to lower fitness. However, recent studies have failed to validate this hypothesis. A proposed wider framework suggests that reproduction can be perceived as an overload adds up to other environmental challenges that individuals must adjust to. In this case, elevated glucocorticoids could help individuals to allocate resources to reproduction without comprising other functions, leading to the expectation of a positive cort-fitness relationship. This has been proposed as the Cort-Adaptation Hypothesis. Stress levels result from a complex interaction between the environment and the neuroendocrine system of animals. Accounting for physiological functions involved in how animals cope with their environment would help to clarify the relationship between glucocorticoids and animal performance. We used roe deer (Capreolus capreolus) inhabiting diverse habitats in the Iberian Peninsula to: i) test the Cort-Fitness and Cort-Adaptation hypotheses by indexing fitness using a comprehensive physiological approach which takes into account fundamental physiological functions and their trade-offs; and ii) evaluate the link between primary productivity and individuals' condition in a seasonal environment. We evaluated spatial and temporal variation in stress levels, reproductive hormone levels, nutritional status and immune function from fecal samples collected in 2010. Lower stress levels were related to better condition in non-reproductive seasons but not to higher primary productivity. In contrast, stress levels were always positively related to reproductive condition, which was better in most productive habitats. Summer and winter were the less productive seasons and the more challenging for the species in the habitat gradient studied. In winter, reproductive condition traded off against immune function being biased toward immune function in less productive habitats. In

  9. Shopping Centers as Panther Habitat: Inferring Animal Locations from Models

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    David S. Maehr

    2004-12-01

    Full Text Available A recent model of Florida panther (Puma concolor coryi habitat erred in arbitrarily creating buffers around radio locations collected during daylight hours on the assumption that study animals were only at rest during these times. The buffers generated by this method likely cause an overestimation of the amounts and kinds of habitats that are used by the panther. This, and other errors, could lead to the impression that unfragmented forest cover is unimportant to panther conservation, and could encourage inaccurate characterizations of panther habitat. Previous 24-hour monitoring of activity and activity readings made during routine telemetry flights indicate that high levels of activity occur in the early morning hours. Literature on the behavior of the species does not support the creation of large buffers around telemetry locations to compensate for the lack of nighttime telemetry data. A thorough examination of ongoing studies that use global positioning systems may help calibrate future Florida panther habitat models.

  10. Predictive habitat modelling as a tool to assess the change in distribution and extent of an OSPAR priority habitat under an increased ocean temperature scenario: consequences for marine protected area networks and management.

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    Kate S G Gormley

    Full Text Available The aims of this study were to determine the extent and distribution of an OSPAR priority habitat under current baseline ocean temperatures; to illustrate the prospect for habitat loss under a changing ocean temperature scenario; and to demonstrate the potential application of predictive habitat mapping in "future-proofing" conservation and biodiversity management. Maxent modelling and GIS environmental envelope analysis of the biogenic bed forming species, Modiolus modiolus was carried out. The Maxent model was tested and validated using 75%/25% training/test occurrence records and validated against two sampling biases (the whole study area and a 20km buffer. The model was compared to the envelope analysis and the area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (Area Under the curve; AUC was evaluated. The performance of the Maxent model was rated as 'good' to 'excellent' on all replicated runs and low variation in the runs was recorded from the AUC values. The extent of "most suitable", "less suitable" and "unsuitable" habitat was calculated for the baseline year (2009 and the projected increased ocean temperature scenarios (2030, 2050, 2080 and 2100. A loss of 100% of "most suitable" habitat was reported by 2080. Maintaining a suitable level of protection of marine habitats/species of conservation importance may require management of the decline and migration rather than maintenance of present extent. Methods applied in this study provide the initial application of a plausible "conservation management tool".

  11. Predictive habitat modelling as a tool to assess the change in distribution and extent of an OSPAR priority habitat under an increased ocean temperature scenario: consequences for marine protected area networks and management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gormley, Kate S G; Porter, Joanne S; Bell, Michael C; Hull, Angela D; Sanderson, William G

    2013-01-01

    The aims of this study were to determine the extent and distribution of an OSPAR priority habitat under current baseline ocean temperatures; to illustrate the prospect for habitat loss under a changing ocean temperature scenario; and to demonstrate the potential application of predictive habitat mapping in "future-proofing" conservation and biodiversity management. Maxent modelling and GIS environmental envelope analysis of the biogenic bed forming species, Modiolus modiolus was carried out. The Maxent model was tested and validated using 75%/25% training/test occurrence records and validated against two sampling biases (the whole study area and a 20km buffer). The model was compared to the envelope analysis and the area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (Area Under the curve; AUC) was evaluated. The performance of the Maxent model was rated as 'good' to 'excellent' on all replicated runs and low variation in the runs was recorded from the AUC values. The extent of "most suitable", "less suitable" and "unsuitable" habitat was calculated for the baseline year (2009) and the projected increased ocean temperature scenarios (2030, 2050, 2080 and 2100). A loss of 100% of "most suitable" habitat was reported by 2080. Maintaining a suitable level of protection of marine habitats/species of conservation importance may require management of the decline and migration rather than maintenance of present extent. Methods applied in this study provide the initial application of a plausible "conservation management tool".

  12. Synergistic impacts of habitat loss and fragmentation on model ecosystems

    OpenAIRE

    Bartlett, Lewis J.; Newbold, Tim; Purves, Drew W.; Tittensor, Derek P.; Harfoot, Michael B. J.

    2016-01-01

    Habitat loss and fragmentation are major threats to biodiversity, yet separating their effects is challenging. We use a multi-trophic, trait-based, and spatially explicit general ecosystem model to examine the independent and synergistic effects of these processes on ecosystem structure. We manipulated habitat by removing plant biomass in varying spatial extents, intensities, and configurations. We found that emergent synergistic interactions of loss and fragmentation are major determinants o...

  13. LAND SUITABILITY SCENARIOS FOR ARID COASTAL PLAINS USING GIS MODELING: SOUTHWESTERN SINAI COASTAL PLAIN, EGYPT

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    Ahmed Mohamed Wahid

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Site selection analysis was carried out to find the best suitable lands for development activities in an example of promising coastal plains, southwestern Sinai, Egypt. Two GIS models were developed to represent two scenarios of land use suitability in the study area using GIS Multi Criteria Analysis Modeling. The factors contributed in the analysis are the Topography, Land cover, Existing Land use, Flash flood index, Drainage lines and Water points. The first scenario was to classify the area according to various gradual ranges of suitability. According to this scenario, the area is classified into five classes of suitability. The percentage of suitability values are 51.16, 6.13, 22.32, 18.49 and 1.89% for unsuitable, least suitable, low suitable, suitable and high suitable, respectively. The second scenario is developed for a particular kind of land use planning; tourism and recreation projects. The suitability map of this scenario was classified into five values. Unsuitable areas represent 51.18% of the study area, least suitable 16.67%, low suitable 22.85%, suitable 8.61%, and high suitable 0.68%. The best area for locating development projects is the area surrounding El-Tor City and close to the coast. This area could be an urban extension of El-Tor City with more economical and environmental management.

  14. LAND SUITABILITY SCENARIOS FOR ARID COASTAL PLAINS USING GIS MODELING: SOUTHWESTERN SINAI COASTAL PLAIN, EGYPT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ahmed Wahid

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Site selection analysis was carried out to find the best suitable lands for development activities in an example of promising coastal plains, southwestern Sinai, Egypt. Two GIS models were developed to represent two scenarios of land use suitability in the study area using GIS Multi Criteria Analysis Modeling. The factors contributed in the analysis are the Topography, Land cover, Existing Land use, Flash flood index, Drainage lines and Water points. The first scenario was to classify the area according to various gradual ranges of suitability. According to this scenario, the area is classified into five classes of suitability. The percentage of suitability values are 51.16, 6.13, 22.32, 18.49 and 1.89% for unsuitable, least suitable, low suitable, suitable and high suitable, respectively. The second scenario is developed for a particular kind of land use planning; tourism and recreation projects. The suitability map of this scenario was classified into five values. Unsuitable areas represent 51.18% of the study area, least suitable 16.67%, low suitable 22.85%, suitable 8.61%, and high suitable 0.68%. The best area for locating development projects is the area surrounding El-Tor City and close to the coast. This area could be an urban extension of El-Tor City with more economical and environmental management.

  15. Evaluating the suitability of coupled biophysical models for fishery management

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hinrichsen, H.H.; Dickey-Collas, M.; Huret, M.; Peck, M.A.

    2011-01-01

    The potential role of coupled biophysical models in enhancing the conservation, management, and recovery of fish stocks is assessed, with emphasis on anchovy, cod, herring, and sprat in European waters. The assessment indicates that coupled biophysical models are currently capable of simulating

  16. Assessing The Suitability Of Partial Equilibrium Modelling In ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The structure and specifications of the model, and the data input requirement and availability are examined. The results ... The main assumptions of a perfect competitive market hypothesis underlying the Tanzania Trade Model (TTM) are violated especially on the supply of round wood, the existence of monopoly situation in ...

  17. Groundwater suitability recharge zones modelling - A GIS application

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dabral, S.; Bhatt, B.; Joshi, J. P.; Sharma, N.

    2014-11-01

    Groundwater quality in Gujarat state is highly variable and due to multiplicity of factors viz. influenced by direct sea water encroachment, inherent sediment salinity, water logging, overexploitation leading to overall deterioration in ground water quality, coupled with domestic and industrial pollution etc. The groundwater scenario in the state is not very encouraging due to imbalance between recharge and groundwater exploitation. Further, the demand for water has increased manifold owing to agricultural, industrial and domestic requirement and this has led to water scarcity in many parts of the state, which is likely to become more severe in coming future due to both natural and manmade factors. Therefore, sustainable development of groundwater resource requires precise quantitative assessment based on reasonably valid scientific principles. Hence, delineation of groundwater potential zones (GWPZ), has acquired great significance. The present study focuses on the integrated Geospatial and Multi-Criteria Decision Making (MCDM) techniques to determine the most important contributing factors that affect the groundwater resources and also to delineate the potential zones for groundwater recharge. The multiple thematic layers of influencing parameters viz. geology, geomorphology, soil, slope, drainage density and land use, weightages were assigned to the each factor according to their relative importance as per subject experts opinion owing to the natural setup of the region. The Analytical Hierarchy Process (AHP) was applied to these factors and potential recharge zones were identified. The study area for the assessment of groundwater recharge potential zones is Mahi-Narmada inter-stream region of Gujarat state. The study shows that around 28 % region has the excellent suitability of the ground water recharge.

  18. Assessment of Habitat Suitability Is Affected by Plant-Soil Feedback: Comparison of Field and Garden Experiment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hemrová, Lucie; Knappová, Jana; Münzbergová, Zuzana

    2016-01-01

    Field translocation experiments (i.e., the introduction of seeds or seedlings of different species into different localities) are commonly used to study habitat associations of species, as well as factors limiting species distributions and local abundances. Species planted or sown in sites where they naturally occur are expected to perform better or equally well compared to sites at which they do not occur or are rare. This, however, contrasts with the predictions of the Janzen-Connell hypothesis and commonly reported intraspecific negative plant-soil feedback. The few previous studies indicating poorer performance of plants at sites where they naturally occur did not explore the mechanisms behind this pattern. In this study, we used field translocation experiments established using both seeds and seedlings to study the determinants of local abundance of four dominant species in grasslands. To explore the possible effects of intraspecific negative plant-soil feedback on our results, we tested the effect of local species abundance on the performance of the plants in the field experiment. In addition, we set up a garden experiment to explore the intensity of intraspecific as well as interspecific feedback between the dominants used in the experiment. In some cases, the distribution and local abundances of the species were partly driven by habitat conditions at the sites, and species performed better at their own sites. However, the prevailing pattern was that the local dominants performed worse at sites where they naturally occur than at any other sites. Moreover, the success of plants in the field experiment was lower in the case of higher intraspecific abundance prior to experimental setup. In the garden feedback experiment, two of the species performed significantly worse in soils conditioned by their species than in soils conditioned by the other species. In addition, the performance of the plants was significantly correlated between the two experiments

  19. Assessment of Habitat Suitability Is Affected by Plant-Soil Feedback: Comparison of Field and Garden Experiment.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lucie Hemrová

    Full Text Available Field translocation experiments (i.e., the introduction of seeds or seedlings of different species into different localities are commonly used to study habitat associations of species, as well as factors limiting species distributions and local abundances. Species planted or sown in sites where they naturally occur are expected to perform better or equally well compared to sites at which they do not occur or are rare. This, however, contrasts with the predictions of the Janzen-Connell hypothesis and commonly reported intraspecific negative plant-soil feedback. The few previous studies indicating poorer performance of plants at sites where they naturally occur did not explore the mechanisms behind this pattern.In this study, we used field translocation experiments established using both seeds and seedlings to study the determinants of local abundance of four dominant species in grasslands. To explore the possible effects of intraspecific negative plant-soil feedback on our results, we tested the effect of local species abundance on the performance of the plants in the field experiment. In addition, we set up a garden experiment to explore the intensity of intraspecific as well as interspecific feedback between the dominants used in the experiment.In some cases, the distribution and local abundances of the species were partly driven by habitat conditions at the sites, and species performed better at their own sites. However, the prevailing pattern was that the local dominants performed worse at sites where they naturally occur than at any other sites. Moreover, the success of plants in the field experiment was lower in the case of higher intraspecific abundance prior to experimental setup. In the garden feedback experiment, two of the species performed significantly worse in soils conditioned by their species than in soils conditioned by the other species. In addition, the performance of the plants was significantly correlated between the two

  20. Towards a resource-based habitat approach for spatial modelling of vector-borne disease risks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hartemink, Nienke; Vanwambeke, Sophie O; Purse, Bethan V; Gilbert, Marius; Van Dyck, Hans

    2015-11-01

    Given the veterinary and public health impact of vector-borne diseases, there is a clear need to assess the suitability of landscapes for the emergence and spread of these diseases. Current approaches for predicting disease risks neglect key features of the landscape as components of the functional habitat of vectors or hosts, and hence of the pathogen. Empirical-statistical methods do not explicitly incorporate biological mechanisms, whereas current mechanistic models are rarely spatially explicit; both methods ignore the way animals use the landscape (i.e. movement ecology). We argue that applying a functional concept for habitat, i.e. the resource-based habitat concept (RBHC), can solve these issues. The RBHC offers a framework to identify systematically the different ecological resources that are necessary for the completion of the transmission cycle and to relate these resources to (combinations of) landscape features and other environmental factors. The potential of the RBHC as a framework for identifying suitable habitats for vector-borne pathogens is explored and illustrated with the case of bluetongue virus, a midge-transmitted virus affecting ruminants. The concept facilitates the study of functional habitats of the interacting species (vectors as well as hosts) and provides new insight into spatial and temporal variation in transmission opportunities and exposure that ultimately determine disease risks. It may help to identify knowledge gaps and control options arising from changes in the spatial configuration of key resources across the landscape. The RBHC framework may act as a bridge between existing mechanistic and statistical modelling approaches. © 2014 The Authors. Biological Reviews published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of Cambridge Philosophical Society.

  1. Artificial dam lakes as suitable habitats for exotic invertebrates: Ostracoda ecology and distribution in reservoirs of the Eastern Iberian Peninsula

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Escrivà A.

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Reservoirs are the most common deep lakes in Spain, as a consequence of water needs and dry climate. Although these aquatic systems can play an important ecological role in such an area with few large natural lakes, they can also provide new habitats for exotic species, which can colonize ecosystems that native species have not explored yet. Here we present our results for a biannual survey of the ostracod fauna from 24 reservoirs in Xúquer River basin. We check which variables affect ostracod presence, test for differences between winter and summer assemblages, and compare our data with previous available ostracod records from the same river drainage network. Our results reveal that ostracod presence is positively related to high diversity of the invertebrate community and reservoir volume, and negatively with phosphorus concentration. Among the 22 species found, it is noteworthy the first Iberian record of Ilyocypris getica and the second European record of Candonocypris novaezelandiae. Ostracod assemblages significantly vary between summer and winter, and strong differences are found between ostracod communities of reservoirs and those from their connected rivers. Remarkably higher frequency of exotic species in the reservoirs confirms previous findings about the facilitation that artificial ecosystems confer to aquatic invasions.

  2. Integration of QSAR models for bioconcentration suitable for REACH

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gissi, Andrea [Laboratory of Chemistry and Environmental Toxicology, IRCCS - Istituto di Ricerche Farmacologiche “Mario Negri”, via Giuseppe La Masa 19, 20156 Milan (Italy); Dipartimento di Farmacia — Scienze del Farmaco, Università degli Studi di Bari “Aldo Moro”, via Orabona 4, I-70125 Bari (Italy); Nicolotti, Orazio; Carotti, Angelo; Gadaleta, Domenico [Dipartimento di Farmacia — Scienze del Farmaco, Università degli Studi di Bari “Aldo Moro”, via Orabona 4, I-70125 Bari (Italy); Lombardo, Anna [Laboratory of Chemistry and Environmental Toxicology, IRCCS - Istituto di Ricerche Farmacologiche “Mario Negri”, via Giuseppe La Masa 19, 20156 Milan (Italy); Benfenati, Emilio, E-mail: benfenati@marionegri.it [Laboratory of Chemistry and Environmental Toxicology, IRCCS - Istituto di Ricerche Farmacologiche “Mario Negri”, via Giuseppe La Masa 19, 20156 Milan (Italy)

    2013-07-01

    QSAR (Quantitative Structure Activity Relationship) models can be a valuable alternative method to replace or reduce animal test required by REACH. In particular, some endpoints such as bioconcentration factor (BCF) are easier to predict and many useful models have been already developed. In this paper we describe how to integrate two popular BCF models to obtain more reliable predictions. In particular, the herein presented integrated model relies on the predictions of two among the most used BCF models (CAESAR and Meylan), together with the Applicability Domain Index (ADI) provided by the software VEGA. Using a set of simple rules, the integrated model selects the most reliable and conservative predictions and discards possible outliers. In this way, for the prediction of the 851 compounds included in the ANTARES BCF dataset, the integrated model discloses a R{sup 2} (coefficient of determination) of 0.80, a RMSE (Root Mean Square Error) of 0.61 log units and a sensitivity of 76%, with a considerable improvement in respect to the CAESAR (R{sup 2} = 0.63; RMSE = 0.84 log units; sensitivity 55%) and Meylan (R{sup 2} = 0.66; RMSE = 0.77 log units; sensitivity 65%) without discarding too many predictions (118 out of 851). Importantly, considering solely the compounds within the new integrated ADI, the R{sup 2} increased to 0.92, and the sensitivity to 85%, with a RMSE of 0.44 log units. Finally, the use of properly set safety thresholds applied for monitoring the so called “suspicious” compounds, which are those chemicals predicted in proximity of the border normally accepted to discern non-bioaccumulative from bioaccumulative substances, permitted to obtain an integrated model with sensitivity equal to 100%. - Highlights: • Applying two independent QSAR models for bioconcentration factor increases the prediction. • The concordance of the models is an important component of the integration. • The measurement of the applicability domain improves the

  3. Sensitivity of wildlife habitat models to uncertainties in GIS data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoms, David M.; Davis, Frank W.; Cogan, Christopher B.

    1992-01-01

    Decision makers need to know the reliability of output products from GIS analysis. For many GIS applications, it is not possible to compare these products to an independent measure of 'truth'. Sensitivity analysis offers an alternative means of estimating reliability. In this paper, we present a CIS-based statistical procedure for estimating the sensitivity of wildlife habitat models to uncertainties in input data and model assumptions. The approach is demonstrated in an analysis of habitat associations derived from a GIS database for the endangered California condor. Alternative data sets were generated to compare results over a reasonable range of assumptions about several sources of uncertainty. Sensitivity analysis indicated that condor habitat associations are relatively robust, and the results have increased our confidence in our initial findings. Uncertainties and methods described in the paper have general relevance for many GIS applications.

  4. Suitability of ponds formed by strip mining in eastern Oklahoma for public water supply, aquatic life, waterfowl habitat, livestock watering, irrigation, and recreation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parkhurst, Renee S.

    1994-01-01

    A study of coal ponds formed by strip mining in eastern Oklahoma included 25 ponds formed by strip mining from the Croweburg, McAlester, and Iron Post coal seams and 6 noncoal-mine ponds in the coal-mining area. Water-quality samples were collected in the spring and summer of 1985 to determine the suitability of the ponds for public water supply, aquatic life, waterfowl habitat, livestock watering, irrigation, and recreation. The rationale for water-quality criteria and the criteria used for each proposed use are discussed. The ponds were grouped by the coal seam mined or as noncoal-mine ponds, and the number of ponds from each group containing water that exceeded a given criterion is noted. Water in many of the ponds can be used for public water supplies if other sources are not available. Water in most of these ponds exceeds one or more secondary standards, but meets all primary standards. Water samples from the epilimnion (shallow strata as determined by temperature) of six ponds exceeded one or more primary standards, which are criteria protective of human health. Water samples from five of eight Iron Post ponds exceeded the selenium criterion. Water samples from all 31 ponds exceeded one or more secondary standards, which are for the protection of human welfare. The criteria most often exceeded were iron, manganese, dissolved solids, and sulfate, which are secondary standards. The criteria for iron and manganese were exceeded more frequently in the noncoal-mine ponds, whereas ponds formed by strip mining were more likely to exceed the criteria for dissolved solids and sulfate. The ponds are marginally suited for aquatic life. Water samples from the epilimnion of 18 ponds exceeded criteria protective of aquatic life. The criteria for mercury and iron were exceeded most often. Little difference was detected between mine ponds and noncoal-mine ponds. Dissolved oxygen concentrations in the hypolimnion (deepest strata) of all the ponds were less than the minimum

  5. Development of habitat suitability criteria for Neotropical stream fishes and an assessment of their transferability to streams with different conservation status

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fabrício Barreto Teresa

    Full Text Available We assessed the preference of 10 fish species for depth and velocity conditions in forested streams from southeastern Brazil using habitat suitability criteria (HSC curves. We also tested whether preference patterns observed in forested streams can be transferred to deforested streams. We used data from fish sampled in 62 five-meter sites in three forested streams to construct preference curves. Astyanax altiparanae, A. fasciatus, Knodus moenkhausii, and Piabina argentea showed a preference for deep slow habitats, whereas Aspidoras fuscoguttatus, Characidium zebra, Cetopsorhamdia iheringi, Pseudopimelodus pulcher, and Hypostomus nigromaculatus showed an opposite pattern: preference for shallow fast habitats. Hypostomus ancistroides showed a multimodal pattern of preference for depth and velocity. To evaluate whether patterns observed in forested streams may be transferred to deforested streams, we sampled 64 five-meters sites in three deforested streams using the same methodology. The preference for velocity was more consistent than for depth, as success in the transferability criterion was 86% and 29% of species, respectively. This indicates that velocity is a good predictor of species abundance in streams, regardless of their conditionNeste estudo avaliamos a preferência de 10 espécies de peixes por condições de profundidade e fluxo em riachos florestados do sudeste do Brasil por meio do critério de adequabilidade de habitat (habitat suitability criteria - curvas HSC. Testamos também se os padrões de preferência observados nos riachos florestados podem ser transferidos para riachos desmatados. Foram realizadas amostragens da ictiofauna em 62 trechos de cinco metros de extensão em três riachos florestados para a construção das curvas de preferência. Astyanax altiparanae, A. fasciatus, Knodus moenkhausii e Piabina argentea apresentaram preferência por habitats lentos e profundos, enquanto Aspidoras fuscoguttatus, Characidium zebra

  6. Suitability of sheet bending modelling techniques in CAPP applications

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Streppel, A.H.; de Vin, L.J.; de Vin, L.J.; Brinkman, J.; Brinkman, J.; Kals, H.J.J.

    1993-01-01

    The use of CNC machine tools, together with decreasing lot sizes and stricter tolerance prescriptions, has led to changes in sheet-metal part manufacturing. In this paper, problems introduced by the difference between the actual material behaviour and the results obtained from analytical models and

  7. Modeling habitat connectivity to inform reintroductions: a case study with the Chiricahua Leopard Frog

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jarchow, Christopher J.; Hossack, Blake R.; Sigafus, Brent H.; Schwalbe, Cecil R.; Muths, Erin L.

    2016-01-01

    Managing species with intensive tools such as reintroduction may focus on single sites or entire landscapes. For vagile species, long-term persistence will require colonization and establishment in neighboring habitats. Therefore, both suitable colonization sites and suitable dispersal corridors between sites are required. Assessment of landscapes for both requirements can contribute to ranking and selection of reintroduction areas, thereby improving management success. Following eradication of invasive American Bullfrogs (Lithobates catesbeianus) from most of Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge (BANWR; Arizona, United States), larval Chiricahua Leopard Frogs (Lithobates chiricahuensis) from a private pond were reintroduced into three stock ponds. Populations became established at all three reintroduction sites followed by colonization of neighboring ponds in subsequent years. Our aim was to better understand colonization patterns by the federally threatened L. chiricahuensis which could help inform other reintroduction efforts. We assessed the influence of four landscape features on colonization. Using surveys from 2007 and information about the landscape, we developed a habitat connectivity model, based on electrical circuit theory, that identified potential dispersal corridors after explicitly accounting for imperfect detection of frogs. Landscape features provided little insight into why some sites were colonized and others were not, results that are likely because of the uniformity of the BANWR landscape. While corridor modeling may be effective in more-complex landscapes, our results suggest focusing on local habitat will be more useful at BANWR. We also illustrate that existing data, even when limited in spatial or temporal resolution, can provide information useful in formulating management actions.

  8. New tools for aquatic habitat modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    D. Tonina; J. A. McKean; C. Tang; P. Goodwin

    2011-01-01

    Modeling of aquatic microhabitat in streams has been typically done over short channel reaches using one-dimensional simulations, partly because of a lack of high resolution. subaqueous topographic data to better define model boundary conditions. The Experimental Advanced Airborne Research Lidar (EAARL) is an airborne aquatic-terrestrial sensor that allows simultaneous...

  9. Modelling recent and future climatic suitability for fasciolosis in Europe

    OpenAIRE

    Cyril Caminade; Jan van Dijk; Matthew Baylis; Diana Williams

    2015-01-01

    Fasciola hepatica is a parasitic worm responsible for fasciolosis in grazed ruminants in Europe. The free-living stages of this parasite are sensitive to temperature and soil moisture, as are the intermediate snail hosts the parasite depends on for its life-cycle. We used a climate-driven disease model in order to assess the impact of recent and potential future climate changes on the incidence of fasciolosis and to estimate the related uncertainties at the scale of the European landmass. The...

  10. Suitability of Modern Software Development Methodologies for Model Driven Development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ruben Picek

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available As an answer to today’s growing challenges in software industry, wide spectrum of new approaches of software development has occurred. One prominent direction is currently most promising software development paradigm called Model Driven Development (MDD. Despite a lot of skepticism and problems, MDD paradigm is being used and improved to accomplish many inherent potential benefits. In the methodological approach of software development it is necessary to use some kind of development process. Modern methodologies can be classified into two main categories: formal or heavyweight and agile or lightweight. But when it is a question about MDD and development process for MDD, currently known methodologies are very poor or better said they don't have any explanation of MDD process. As the result of research, in this paper, author examines the possibilities of using existing modern software methodologies in context of MDD paradigm.

  11. Quantification of climate change implications for water-based management: A case study of oyster suitability sites occurrence model along the Kenya coast

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aura, Christopher Mulanda; Musa, Safina; Osore, Melckzedeck K.; Kimani, Edward; Alati, Victor Mwakha; Wambiji, Nina; Maina, George W.; Charo-Karisa, Harrison

    2017-01-01

    To ensure long-term sustainability of the littoral marine ecosystem for water-based management and aquaculture potential, it is necessary to quantify and project the effect of sea warming on the resident biota. This study evaluated the potential of an oyster Suitability Sites Occurrence Model (SSOM) to predict the status of littoral areas in the future due to sea warming. Data sources comprised Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) and Landsat 7 ETM +. The suitable sites were ranked on a scale of 1 (least suitable) to 5 (most suitable). In the suitability model, score 5 had the highest proportion (35.8%) of oyster suitability which shrank to 16.2% with a 4 °C increase in sea temperature. Future increases in sea temperature are likely to cause shrinkage in the spatial extent of most suitable and suitable oyster sites. Thus changes in marine oyster suitability in littoral zones are predicted to worsen gradually as sea temperatures increase in the future. Differences in the recorded sea temperature of ≤ 6 °C within and between sites may influence spatial variations in oyster habitat due to future sea warming. Such concepts could form an alternative scientific basis for quantification of potential global climate change effects on biodiversity for marine systems policy adaptation analysis, aquaculture potential, and management.

  12. Modeling intrinsic potential for beaver (Castor canadensis) habitat to inform restoration and climate change adaptation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dittbrenner, Benjamin J; Pollock, Michael M; Schilling, Jason W; Olden, Julian D; Lawler, Joshua J; Torgersen, Christian E

    2018-01-01

    Through their dam-building activities and subsequent water storage, beaver have the potential to restore riparian ecosystems and offset some of the predicted effects of climate change by modulating streamflow. Thus, it is not surprising that reintroducing beaver to watersheds from which they have been extirpated is an often-used restoration and climate-adaptation strategy. Identifying sites for reintroduction, however, requires detailed information about habitat factors-information that is not often available at broad spatial scales. Here we explore the potential for beaver relocation throughout the Snohomish River Basin in Washington, USA with a model that identifies some of the basic building blocks of beaver habitat suitability and does so by relying solely on remotely sensed data. More specifically, we developed a generalized intrinsic potential model that draws on remotely sensed measures of stream gradient, stream width, and valley width to identify where beaver could become established if suitable vegetation were to be present. Thus, the model serves as a preliminary screening tool that can be applied over relatively large extents. We applied the model to 5,019 stream km and assessed the ability of the model to correctly predict beaver habitat by surveying for beavers in 352 stream reaches. To further assess the potential for relocation, we assessed land ownership, use, and land cover in the landscape surrounding stream reaches with varying levels of intrinsic potential. Model results showed that 33% of streams had moderate or high intrinsic potential for beaver habitat. We found that no site that was classified as having low intrinsic potential had any sign of beavers and that beaver were absent from nearly three quarters of potentially suitable sites, indicating that there are factors preventing the local population from occupying these areas. Of the riparian areas around streams with high intrinsic potential for beaver, 38% are on public lands and 17% are

  13. Modeling intrinsic potential for beaver (Castor canadensis) habitat to inform restoration and climate change adaptation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dittbrenner, Benjamin J.; Pollack, Michael M.; Schilling, Jason W.; Olden, Julian D.; Lawler, Joshua J.; Torgersen, Christian E.

    2018-01-01

    Through their dam-building activities and subsequent water storage, beaver have the potential to restore riparian ecosystems and offset some of the predicted effects of climate change by modulating streamflow. Thus, it is not surprising that reintroducing beaver to watersheds from which they have been extirpated is an often-used restoration and climate-adaptation strategy. Identifying sites for reintroduction, however, requires detailed information about habitat factors—information that is not often available at broad spatial scales. Here we explore the potential for beaver relocation throughout the Snohomish River Basin in Washington, USA with a model that identifies some of the basic building blocks of beaver habitat suitability and does so by relying solely on remotely sensed data. More specifically, we developed a generalized intrinsic potential model that draws on remotely sensed measures of stream gradient, stream width, and valley width to identify where beaver could become established if suitable vegetation were to be present. Thus, the model serves as a preliminary screening tool that can be applied over relatively large extents. We applied the model to 5,019 stream km and assessed the ability of the model to correctly predict beaver habitat by surveying for beavers in 352 stream reaches. To further assess the potential for relocation, we assessed land ownership, use, and land cover in the landscape surrounding stream reaches with varying levels of intrinsic potential. Model results showed that 33% of streams had moderate or high intrinsic potential for beaver habitat. We found that no site that was classified as having low intrinsic potential had any sign of beavers and that beaver were absent from nearly three quarters of potentially suitable sites, indicating that there are factors preventing the local population from occupying these areas. Of the riparian areas around streams with high intrinsic potential for beaver, 38% are on public lands and 17

  14. Modeling the Habitat of the Red-Crowned Crane (Grus japonensis Wintering in Cheorwon-Gun to Support Decision Making

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ho Gul Kim

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Cheorwon-gun is an important wintering area for the red-crowned crane (Grus japonensis. Although eco-tourism has been recently proposed as a means to stimulate the local economy, it may have adverse effects on the crane. We believe a science-based conservation plan is needed to mitigate these negative effects. To this end, our study had three objectives: (1 to analyze the red-crowned crane habitat and its suitability in Cheorwon-gun, using field surveys and habitat modeling; (2 to check the feasibility of alternative habitat patches across demilitarized zones (DMZs; and (3 to propose a conceptual diagram that minimizes habitat loss during development activities. We aim to quantify habitat suitability, the farmland area needed to support existing crane populations in wintertime, disturbance caused by human activities, and vehicular spatial patterns. These data could be used in spatial planning. The framework of this study and the process of making a conceptual diagram could be applied to other areas where there is a conflict between development and habitat conservation.

  15. Improving predictive mapping of deep-water habitats: Considering multiple model outputs and ensemble techniques

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robert, Katleen; Jones, Daniel O. B.; Roberts, J. Murray; Huvenne, Veerle A. I.

    2016-07-01

    In the deep sea, biological data are often sparse; hence models capturing relationships between observed fauna and environmental variables (acquired via acoustic mapping techniques) are often used to produce full coverage species assemblage maps. Many statistical modelling techniques are being developed, but there remains a need to determine the most appropriate mapping techniques. Predictive habitat modelling approaches (redundancy analysis, maximum entropy and random forest) were applied to a heterogeneous section of seabed on Rockall Bank, NE Atlantic, for which landscape indices describing the spatial arrangement of habitat patches were calculated. The predictive maps were based on remotely operated vehicle (ROV) imagery transects high-resolution autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) sidescan backscatter maps. Area under the curve (AUC) and accuracy indicated similar performances for the three models tested, but performance varied by species assemblage, with the transitional species assemblage showing the weakest predictive performances. Spatial predictions of habitat suitability differed between statistical approaches, but niche similarity metrics showed redundancy analysis and random forest predictions to be most similar. As one statistical technique could not be found to outperform the others when all assemblages were considered, ensemble mapping techniques, where the outputs of many models are combined, were applied. They showed higher accuracy than any single model. Different statistical approaches for predictive habitat modelling possess varied strengths and weaknesses and by examining the outputs of a range of modelling techniques and their differences, more robust predictions, with better described variation and areas of uncertainties, can be achieved. As improvements to prediction outputs can be achieved without additional costly data collection, ensemble mapping approaches have clear value for spatial management.

  16. Birdsong Acquisition Model by Sexual Selection Focused on the Habitat Density

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fujita, Yohei; Mutoh, Atsuko; Kato, Shohei

    We describe a simulation model based on an avian ecosystem for determining what causes birdsong evolution. It is already known that songbirds communicate with a “birdsong.” This birdsong is used in territorial and courtship behaviors. Some previous researches have suggested that songs related to territorial behaviors should have simple structures while those related to courtship behaviors should have complex ones. We suspect that birdsongs are constantly evolving to achieve a suitable balance between the two behaviors while considering the surrounding environment. We consider avian habitat density to be one of the most important environmental factors influencing birdsong evolution and therefore created different densities in a simulation model. In this paper, we propose a birdsong acquisition model by sexual selection that contains both territorial and courtship behaviors. We conducted simulations with the proposed model and determined that the evolution of birdsongs differs depending on a bird's habitat density. The experimental results suggest that a bird's habitat density influences the structure of birdsongs, as well.

  17. Modelling the spread of ragweed: Effects of habitat, climate change and diffusion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vogl, G.; Smolik, M.; Stadler, L.-M.; Leitner, M.; Essl, F.; Dullinger, S.; Kleinbauer, I.; Peterseil, J.

    2008-07-01

    Ragweed (Ambrosia artemisiifolia L.) is an annual plant native in North America which has been invading Central Europe for 150 years. Caused by the warming of the European climate its spread process has accelerated in the last few decades. The pollen of ragweed evokes heavy allergies and what probably counts even more because of its bloom rather late in summer causes a second wave of allergy when other pollen allergies have decayed. We have reconstructed the invasion process of ragweed in Austria by collecting all records until the year 2005. Austria was subdivided into more than 2600 grid cells of ≈35 text{km}^2 each. Ragweed records were related to environmental descriptors (average temperatures, land use, etc.) by means of logistic regression models, and the suitability of grid cells as habitat for ragweed was determined. This enabled modelling of the diffusive spread of ragweed from 1990 to 2005. The results of the simulations were compared with the observed data, and thus the model was optimised. We then incorporated regional climate change models, in particular increased July mean temperatures of +2.3 ^circtext{C} in 2050, increasing considerably future habitat suitability. This is used for predicting the drastic dispersal of ragweed during the forthcoming decades.

  18. ANALYSIS OF LAND RESOURCES SUITABILITY BY FUNCTIONAL MODEL IN EASTERN CROATIA REGION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vladimir Vukadinović

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available A total of 17405 soil samples (2003rd-2009th years were analyzed in the eastern part of Croatia. The aim of this paper is to assess land suitability for crops i.e. to describe quantitatively land quality and indicate disadvantages of land using system in investigated area. The described mathematical model uses score functions for estimating indicators of soil suitability. Soil suitability assessment computer model for crops, supported by GIS, proved to be fast, efficient and enough reliable. Using GIS tool it is possible to visualize land suitability and present it in different cartographic bases such as maps whereas using geostatistical method – kriging enables to possible to provide regionalization of production area based on quantitative assessment of land suitability for crops.

  19. On the suitability of group lending model in South Sudan's small and ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    On the suitability of group lending model in South Sudan's small and medium ... The effectiveness of SMEs as key economic drivers is amongst other things ... Angola, Bangladesh, Bolivia, Burundi, and Colombia underscores such a position.

  20. Integration of Long-Term Research into a GIS Based Landscape Habitat Model for the Red-Cockaded Woodpecker

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Franzreb, K.; Lloyd, F.T.

    2000-10-01

    The red cockaded woodpecker has been intensively studied since 1985 when the population was on the verge of extinction. The population decline is primarily the result of timber harvesting prior to 1950 and restricted burning. Construction of artificial cavities, translocations, competitor control, and removal of hardwood mid-story has provided suitable habitat. Since 1985, the population has increased from 4 to 99 birds. A GIS model is being developed to simulate the development of habitat at SRS in relation to management and existing vegetation.

  1. Synergistic impacts of habitat loss and fragmentation on model ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bartlett, Lewis J; Newbold, Tim; Purves, Drew W; Tittensor, Derek P; Harfoot, Michael B J

    2016-09-28

    Habitat loss and fragmentation are major threats to biodiversity, yet separating their effects is challenging. We use a multi-trophic, trait-based, and spatially explicit general ecosystem model to examine the independent and synergistic effects of these processes on ecosystem structure. We manipulated habitat by removing plant biomass in varying spatial extents, intensities, and configurations. We found that emergent synergistic interactions of loss and fragmentation are major determinants of ecosystem response, including population declines and trophic pyramid shifts. Furthermore, trait-mediated interactions, such as a disproportionate sensitivity of large-sized organisms to fragmentation, produce significant effects in shaping responses. We also show that top-down regulation mitigates the effects of land use on plant biomass loss, suggesting that models lacking these interactions-including most carbon stock models-may not adequately capture land-use change impacts. Our results have important implications for understanding ecosystem responses to environmental change, and assessing the impacts of habitat fragmentation. © 2016 The Authors.

  2. Predictive habitat modelling of humpback (Megaptera novaeangliae) and Antarctic minke (Balaenoptera bonaerensis) whales in the Southern Ocean as a planning tool for seismic surveys

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bombosch, Annette; Zitterbart, Daniel P.; Van Opzeeland, Ilse; Frickenhaus, Stephan; Burkhardt, Elke; Wisz, Mary S.; Boebel, Olaf

    2014-09-01

    Seismic surveys are frequently a matter of concern regarding their potentially negative impacts on marine mammals. In the Southern Ocean, which provides a critical habitat for several endangered cetacean species, seismic research activities are undertaken at a circumpolar scale. In order to minimize impacts of these surveys, pre-cruise planning requires detailed, spatio-temporally resolved knowledge on the likelihood of encountering these species in the survey area. In this publication we present predictive habitat modelling as a potential tool to support decisions for survey planning. We associated opportunistic sightings (2005-2011) of humpback (Megaptera novaeangliae, N=93) and Antarctic minke whales (Balaenoptera bonaerensis, N=139) with a range of static and dynamic environmental variables. A maximum entropy algorithm (Maxent) was used to develop habitat models and to calculate daily basinwide/circumpolar prediction maps to evaluate how species-specific habitat conditions evolved throughout the spring and summer months. For both species, prediction maps revealed considerable changes in habitat suitability throughout the season. Suitable humpback whale habitat occurred predominantly in ice-free areas, expanding southwards with the retreating sea ice edge, whereas suitable Antarctic minke whale habitat was consistently predicted within sea ice covered areas. Daily, large-scale prediction maps provide a valuable tool to design layout and timing of seismic surveys as they allow the identification and consideration of potential spatio-temporal hotspots to minimize potential impacts of seismic surveys on Antarctic cetacean species.

  3. Combining catchment and instream modelling to assess physical habitat quality

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Olsen, Martin

    Study objectives After the implementation of EU's Water Framework Directive (WFD) in Denmark ecological impacts from groundwater exploitation on surface waters has to receive additional consideration. Small streams in particular are susceptible to changes in run-off but have only recieved little...... attention in past studies of run-off impact on the quality of stream physical habitats. This study combined catchment and instream models with instream habitat observations to assess the ecological impacts from groundwater exploitation on a small stream. The main objectives of this study was; • to assess...... observations showed that juvenile trout in stream Ledreborg prefered lower water depths and water velocities than juvenile trout in larger Danish streams, e.g. River Gudenå. Repeated electrofishing in the stream revealed big differences in temporal and spatial distribution of the trouts on the four reaches...

  4. Geomorphic assessment of habitat suitability in large rivers from satellite remote sensing: a case study from the Ganga river system, India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mozumder, C.; Sinha, R.; Carbonneau, P.

    2010-12-01

    The ecological condition and biotic associations in a river are significantly influenced by geomorphic condition of the river, and therefore, any efforts towards river rehabilitation must address these issues to derive a long-term benefit. Such geomorphic diversity may be generated in various ways - discharge regimes and vegetation cover (driven by climatic setting), channel slope and bankline (driven by catchment morphology), sediment flux and accommodation (driven by geological settings). A pilot study in parts of the Ganga river in India using satellite remote sensing data involved analysis of (a) longitudinal form, (b) cross sectional form and (c) planform of the channel at these sites and derivation of various morphometric parameters. Twelve geomorphic parameters were been identified which influence the aquatic life along with the Land Use/ Land cover in the floodplain, planform dynamics, and channel-floodplain connectivity. For each parameter, four classes are defined as Excellent (A), Good (B), Degraded (C) and Poor (D). Both traditional GIS and the newly developed Fluvial Information System (FIS) were used to analyse the present geomorphic condition of the river for habitat suitability. An attempt was also made to suggest the desired future condition of the river from a geomorphic perspective and the necessary changes/adjustments in river form. These results when integrated with the hydraulic analysis can provide estimates of flow depth and flow volumes necessary for channel maintenance from ecological perspective.

  5. A photovoltaic source I/U model suitable for hardware in the loop application

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stala Robert

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a novel, low-complexity method of simulating PV source characteristics suitable for real-time modeling and hardware implementation. The application of the suitable model of the PV source as well as the model of all the PV system components in a real-time hardware gives a safe, fast and low cost method of testing PV systems. The paper demonstrates the concept of the PV array model and the hardware implementation in FPGAs of the system which combines two PV arrays. The obtained results confirm that the proposed model is of low complexity and can be suitable for hardware in the loop (HIL tests of the complex PV system control, with various arrays operating under different conditions.

  6. Comparison of statistical and theoretical habitat models for conservation planning: the benefit of ensemble prediction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones-Farrand, D. Todd; Fearer, Todd M.; Thogmartin, Wayne E.; Thompson, Frank R.; Nelson, Mark D.; Tirpak, John M.

    2011-01-01

    Selection of a modeling approach is an important step in the conservation planning process, but little guidance is available. We compared two statistical and three theoretical habitat modeling approaches representing those currently being used for avian conservation planning at landscape and regional scales: hierarchical spatial count (HSC), classification and regression tree (CRT), habitat suitability index (HSI), forest structure database (FS), and habitat association database (HA). We focused our comparison on models for five priority forest-breeding species in the Central Hardwoods Bird Conservation Region: Acadian Flycatcher, Cerulean Warbler, Prairie Warbler, Red-headed Woodpecker, and Worm-eating Warbler. Lacking complete knowledge on the distribution and abundance of each species with which we could illuminate differences between approaches and provide strong grounds for recommending one approach over another, we used two approaches to compare models: rank correlations among model outputs and comparison of spatial correspondence. In general, rank correlations were significantly positive among models for each species, indicating general agreement among the models. Worm-eating Warblers had the highest pairwise correlations, all of which were significant (P , 0.05). Red-headed Woodpeckers had the lowest agreement among models, suggesting greater uncertainty in the relative conservation value of areas within the region. We assessed model uncertainty by mapping the spatial congruence in priorities (i.e., top ranks) resulting from each model for each species and calculating the coefficient of variation across model ranks for each location. This allowed identification of areas more likely to be good targets of conservation effort for a species, those areas that were least likely, and those in between where uncertainty is higher and thus conservation action incorporates more risk. Based on our results, models developed independently for the same purpose

  7. [Study on ecological suitability regionalization of Corni Fructus based on Maxent and ArcGIS model].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Fei; Chen, Sui-Qing; Wang, Li-Li; Zhang, Tao; Zhang, Xiao-Bo; Zhu, Shou-Dong

    2017-08-01

    Through planting regionalization the scientific basis for planting area of high-quality medicinal materials was predicted. Through interview investigation and field survey, the distribution information of Corni Fructus in China was collected,and 89 sampling point from 14 producing areas were collected. Climate and topography of Corni Fructus were analyzed, the ecological adaptability of study was conducted based on ArcGIS and Maxent. Different suitability grade at potential areas and regionalization map were formulated. There are nine ecological factors affecting the growth of Corni Fructus, for example precipitation in November and March and vegetation type. The results showed that the most suitable habitats are Henan, Shaanxi, Zhejiang, Chongqing, Hubei, Sichuan, Anhui, Hunan and Shandong province. Using the spatial analysis method,the study not only illustrates the most suitable for the surroundings of Corni Fructus,but also provides a scientific reference for wild resource tending, introduction and cultivation, and artificial planting base and directing production layout. Copyright© by the Chinese Pharmaceutical Association.

  8. A nesting site suitability model for rock partridge (Alectoris graeca in the Apennine Mountains using logistic regression

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lorenzo Boccia

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available The rock partridge has undergone a decline throughout its entire distribution area, including the population of the central Italian Apennine Mountains. Areas of suitable habitat for this species have been reduced due to landscape fragmentation and the dynamics of domestic animal and wildlife management. The present study was conducted in the Province of Rieti, Lazio Region. Geograph- ical and land use predictors were evaluated in a GIS environment to identify the most relevant factors influencing the presence of rock partridge during the nesting period. Logistic regression was then imple- mented to create a model, characterised by a good level of adequacy, for predicting rock partridge nesting site habitat characteristics. Correct predictions of presence and absence were made in 65.2% and 98.6% of cases, respectively. The ROC value was 0.771, which is statistically significant (P<0.001. The results show that, on a local scale, slope (log, distance from forests, and the presence of bare rocks were statisti- cally significant factors. On a landscape scale, the percentage of forests, the presence of sparse vegetation (over 60%, and a negative Mean Shape Index (MSI were found to be statistically significant.

  9. Critical Appraisal of Translational Research Models for Suitability in Performance Assessment of Cancer Centers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rajan, Abinaya; Sullivan, Richard; Bakker, Suzanne

    2012-01-01

    Background. Translational research is a complex cumulative process that takes time. However, the operating environment for cancer centers engaged in translational research is now financially insecure. Centers are challenged to improve results and reduce time from discovery to practice innovations. Performance assessment can identify improvement areas that will help reduce translational delays. Currently, no standard method exists to identify models for use in performance assessment. This study aimed to critically appraise translational research models for suitability in performance assessment of cancer centers. Methods. We conducted a systematic review to identify models and developed a set of criteria based on scientometrics, complex adaptive systems, research and development processes, and strategic evaluation. Models were assessed for linkage between research and care components, new knowledge, systems integration, performance assessment, and review of other models. Results. Twelve models were identified; six described phases/components for translational research in different blocks (T models) and six described the process of translational research (process models). Both models view translational research as an accumulation of new knowledge. However, process models more clearly address systems integration, link research and care components, and were developed for evaluating and improving the performance of translational research. T models are more likely to review other models. Conclusion. Process models seem to be more suitable for performance assessment of cancer centers than T models. The most suitable process models (the Process Marker Model and Lean and Six Sigma applications) must be thoroughly tested in practice. PMID:23263926

  10. Climatic suitability of Aedes albopictus in Europe referring to climate change projections: comparison of mechanistic and correlative niche modelling approaches.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fischer, D; Thomas, S M; Neteler, M; Tjaden, N B; Beierkuhnlein, C

    2014-02-13

    The Asian tiger mosquito, Aedes albopictus, is capable of transmitting a broad range of viruses to humans. Since its introduction at the end of the 20th century, it has become well established in large parts of southern Europe. As future expansion as a result of climate change can be expected, determining the current and projected future climatic suitability of this invasive mosquito in Europe is of interest. Several studies have tried to detect the potential habitats for this species, but differing data sources and modelling approaches must be considered when interpreting the findings. Here, various modelling methodologies are compared with special emphasis on model set-up and study design. Basic approaches and model algorithms for the projection of spatio-temporal trends within the 21st century differ substantially. Applied methods range from mechanistic models (e.g. overlay of climatic constraints based on geographic information systems or rather process-based approaches) to correlative niche models. We conclude that spatial characteristics such as introduction gateways and dispersal pathways need to be considered. Laboratory experiments addressing the climatic constraints of the mosquito are required for improved modelling results. However, the main source of uncertainty remains the insufficient knowledge about the species' ability to adapt to novel environments.

  11. Modeling to Support the Development of Habitat Targets for Piping Plovers on the Missouri River

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Buenau, Kate E. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)

    2015-05-05

    Report on modeling and analyses done in support of developing quantative sandbar habitat targets for piping plovers, including assessment of reference, historical, dams present but not operated, and habitat construction calibrated to meet population viability targets.

  12. Habitat heterogeneity hypothesis and edge effects in model metacommunities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamm, Michaela; Drossel, Barbara

    2017-08-07

    Spatial heterogeneity is an inherent property of any living environment and is expected to favour biodiversity due to a broader niche space. Furthermore, edges between different habitats can provide additional possibilities for species coexistence. Using computer simulations, this study examines metacommunities consisting of several trophic levels in heterogeneous environments in order to explore the above hypotheses on a community level. We model heterogeneous landscapes by using two different sized resource pools and evaluate the combined effect of dispersal and heterogeneity on local and regional species diversity. This diversity is obtained by running population dynamics and evaluating the robustness (i.e., the fraction of surviving species). The main results for regional robustness are in agreement with the habitat heterogeneity hypothesis, as the largest robustness is found in heterogeneous systems with intermediate dispersal rates. This robustness is larger than in homogeneous systems with the same total amount of resources. We study the edge effect by arranging the two types of resources in two homogeneous blocks. Different edge responses in diversity are observed, depending on dispersal strength. Local robustness is highest for edge habitats that contain the smaller amount of resource in combination with intermediate dispersal. The results show that dispersal is relevant to correctly identify edge responses on community level. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Spatially explicit modeling of greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) habitat in Nevada and northeastern California: a decision-support tool for management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coates, Peter S.; Casazza, Michael L.; Brussee, Brianne E.; Ricca, Mark A.; Gustafson, K. Benjamin; Overton, Cory T.; Sanchez-Chopitea, Erika; Kroger, Travis; Mauch, Kimberly; Niell, Lara; Howe, Kristy; Gardner, Scott; Espinosa, Shawn; Delehanty, David J.

    2014-01-01

    Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus, hereafter referred to as “sage-grouse”) populations are declining throughout the sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) ecosystem, including millions of acres of potential habitat across the West. Habitat maps derived from empirical data are needed given impending listing decisions that will affect both sage-grouse population dynamics and human land-use restrictions. This report presents the process for developing spatially explicit maps describing relative habitat suitability for sage-grouse in Nevada and northeastern California. Maps depicting habitat suitability indices (HSI) values were generated based on model-averaged resource selection functions informed by more than 31,000 independent telemetry locations from more than 1,500 radio-marked sage-grouse across 12 project areas in Nevada and northeastern California collected during a 15-year period (1998–2013). Modeled habitat covariates included land cover composition, water resources, habitat configuration, elevation, and topography, each at multiple spatial scales that were relevant to empirically observed sage-grouse movement patterns. We then present an example of how the HSI can be delineated into categories. Specifically, we demonstrate that the deviation from the mean can be used to classify habitat suitability into three categories of habitat quality (high, moderate, and low) and one non-habitat category. The classification resulted in an agreement of 93–97 percent for habitat versus non-habitat across a suite of independent validation datasets. Lastly, we provide an example of how space use models can be integrated with habitat models to help inform conservation planning. In this example, we combined probabilistic breeding density with a non-linear probability of occurrence relative to distance to nearest lek (traditional breeding ground) using count data to calculate a composite space use index (SUI). The SUI was then classified into two categories of use

  14. Landscape ecology and wild rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus habitat modeling in the Mediterranean region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Narce, M.

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Landscape modification is one of the reasons for the decrease in rabbit populations. The objective of this study was to model wild rabbit habitat using landscape ecology to create a diagnosis method able to assess habitat quality at a large scale. Rabbit presence/absence was recorded on 536 plots of 1 ha. Spotlight transect counts indicated a low relative abundance (KIA = 2.3 rabbits/km. We produced a land use map with metric precision using remote sensing. Water, bare soil, herbaceous, shrubs and trees were identified. Landscape structure and diversity were evaluated using variables available in FRAGSTATS. A logistic regression was performed to assess the link between rabbit presence/absence and landscape structure. Our results indicate that a suitable habitat has a high diversity, a medium number of patches and a small proportion of shrubs. These results could be used to diagnose the landscape prior to any management action to enhance rabbit populations and conversely be helpful as a tool of integrated control in the cases of local outbreaks with agricultural damages.

  15. Assessment of Brown Bear\\'s (Ursus arctos syriacus Winter Habitat Using Geographically Weighted Regression and Generalized Linear Model in South of Iran

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. A. Zarei

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Winter dens are one of the important components of brown bear's (Ursus arctos syriacus habitat, affecting their reproduction and survival. Therefore identification of factors affecting the habitat selection and suitable denning areas in the conservation of our largest carnivore is necessary. We used Geographically Weighted Logistic Regression (GWLR and Generalized Linear Model (GLM for modeling suitability of denning habitat in Kouhkhom region in Fars province. In the present research, 20 dens (presence locations and 20 caves where signs of bear were not found (absence locations were used as dependent variables and six environmental factors were used for each location as independent variables. The results of GLM showed that variables of distance to settlements, altitude, and distance to water were the most important parameters affecting suitability of the brown bear's denning habitat. The results of GWLR showed the significant local variations in the relationship between occurrence of brown bear dens and the variable of distance to settlements. Based on the results of both models, suitable habitats for denning of the species are impassable areas in the mountains and inaccessible for humans.

  16. Purple sea urchin habitat suitability model for Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary Biogeographic Assessment

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The National Marine Sanctuary Program (NMSP) updates and revises the management plans for each of its 13 sanctuaries. This process, which is open to the public,...

  17. California halibut habitat suitability model for Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary Biogeographic Assessment

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The Office of National Marine Sanctuaries (ONMS) is updates and revises the management plans for each of its 13 sanctuaries. This process, which is open to the...

  18. Sheep crab habitat suitability model for Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary Biogeographic Assessment

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The National Marine Sanctuary Program (NMSP) updates and revises the management plans for each of its 13 sanctuaries. This process, which is open to the public,...

  19. Ridgeback rock shrimp habitat suitability model for Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary Biogeographic Assessment

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The National Marine Sanctuary Program (NMSP) updates and revises the management plans for each of its 13 sanctuaries. This process, which is open to the public,...

  20. California sea cucumber habitat suitability model for Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary Biogeographic Assessment

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The Office of National Marine Sanctuary Program (ONMS) updates and revises the management plans for each of its 13 sanctuaries. This process, which is open to the...

  1. Red abalone habitat suitability model for Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary Biogeographic Assessment

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The National Marine Sanctuary Program (NMSP) updates and revises the management plans for each of its 13 sanctuaries. This process, which is open to the public,...

  2. Giant seabass habitat suitability model for Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary Biogeographic Assessment

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The National Marine Sanctuary Program (NMSP) updates and revises the management plans for each of its 13 sanctuaries. This process, which is open to the public,...

  3. California spiny lobster habitat suitability model for Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary Biogeographic Assessment

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The National Marine Sanctuary Program (NMSP) updates and revises the management plans for each of its 13 sanctuaries. This process, which is open to the public,...

  4. California market squid habitat suitability model for Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary Biogeographic Assessment

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The National Marine Sanctuary Program (NMSP) updates and revises the management plans for each of its 13 sanctuaries. This process, which is open to the public,...

  5. Black abalone habitat suitability model for Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary Biogeographic Assessment

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The Office of National Marine Sanctuaries (ONMS) updates and revises the management plans for each of its 13 sanctuaries. This process, which is open to the public,...

  6. White abalone habitat suitability model for Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary Biogeographic Assessment

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The National Marine Sanctuary Program (NMSP) updates and revises the management plans for each of its 13 sanctuaries. This process, which is open to the public,...

  7. California sheephead habitat suitability model for Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary Biogeographic Assessment

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The National Marine Sanctuary Program (NMSP) updates and revises the management plans for each of its 13 sanctuaries. This process, which is open to the public,...

  8. Warty sea cucumber habitat suitability model for Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary Biogeographic Assessment

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The National Marine Sanctuary Program (NMSP) updates and revises the management plans for each of its 13 sanctuaries. This process, which is open to the public,...

  9. Red sea urchin habitat suitability model for Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary Biogeographic Assessment

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The National Marine Sanctuary Program (NMSP) updates and revises the management plans for each of its 13 sanctuaries. This process, which is open to the public,...

  10. Spot shrimp habitat suitability model for Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary Biogeographic Assessment

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The National Marine Sanctuary Program (NMSP) updates and revises the management plans for each of its 13 sanctuaries. This process, which is open to the public,...

  11. Western Monarch and Milkweed Habitat Suitability Modeling Project- March 2016 Final Presentation

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — To better understand the distribution of key breeding areas for the declining western population of monarch butterflies, the USFWS, in collaboration with the Xerces...

  12. Pacific angel shark habitat suitability model for Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary Biogeographic Assessment

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The National Marine Sanctuary Program (NMSP) updates and revises the management plans for each of its 13 sanctuaries. This process, which is open to the public,...

  13. Adult thresher shark habitat suitability model for Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary Biogeographic Assessment

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The National Marine Sanctuary Program (NMSP) updates and revises the management plans for each of its 13 sanctuaries. This process, which is open to the public,...

  14. Juvenile thresher shark habitat suitability model for Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary Biogeographic Assessment

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The National Marine Sanctuary Program (NMSP) updates and revises the management plans for each of its 13 sanctuaries. This process, which is open to the public,...

  15. Rockcrabs of the genus Cancer habitat suitability model for Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary Biogeographic Assessment

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The National Marine Sanctuary Program (NMSP) updates and revises the management plans for each of its 13 sanctuaries. This process, which is open to the public,...

  16. Toward Dynamic Ocean Management: Fisheries assessment and climate projections informed by community developed habitat models based on dynamic coastal oceanography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohut, J. T.; Manderson, J.; Palamara, L. J.; Saba, V. S.; Saba, G.; Hare, J. A.; Curchitser, E. N.; Moore, P.; Seibel, B.; DiDomenico, G.

    2016-12-01

    Through a multidisciplinary study group of experts in marine ecology, physical oceanography and stock assessment from the fishing industry, government and academia we developed a method to explicitly account for shifting habitat distributions in fish population assessments. We used data from field surveys throughout the Northwest Atlantic Ocean to develop a parametric thermal niche model for an important short-lived pelagic forage fish, Atlantic Butterfish. This niche model was coupled to a hindcast of daily bottom water temperature derived from a regional numerical ocean model in order to project daily thermal habitat suitability over the last 40 years. This ecological hindcast was used to estimate the proportion of thermal habitat suitability available on the U.S. Northeast Shelf that was sampled on fishery-independent surveys, accounting for the relative motions of thermal habitat and the trajectory of sampling on the survey. The method and habitat based estimates of availability was integrated into the catchability estimate used to scale population size in the butterfish stock assessment model accepted by the reviewers of the 59th NEFSC stock assessment review, as well as the mid-Atlantic Council's Scientific and Statistical Committee. The contribution of the availability estimate (along with an estimate of detectability) allowed for the development of fishery reference points, a change in stock status from unknown to known, and the establishment of a directed fishery with an allocation of 20,000 metric tons of quota. This presentation will describe how a community based workgroup utilized ocean observing technologies combined with ocean models to better understand the physical ocean that structures marine ecosystems. Using these approaches we will discuss opportunities to inform ecological hindcasts and climate projections with mechanistic models that link species-specific physiology to climate-based thermal scenarios.

  17. Development of a spatially distributed model of fish population density for habitat assessment of rivers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sui, Pengzhe; Iwasaki, Akito; Ryo, Masahiro; Saavedra, Oliver; Yoshimura, Chihiro

    2013-04-01

    Flow conditions play an important role in sustaining biodiversity of river ecosystem. However, their relations to freshwater fishes, especially to fish population density, have not been clearly described. This study, therefore, aimed to propose a new methodology to quantitatively link habitat conditions, including flow conditions and other physical conditions, to population density of fish species. We developed a basin-scale fish distribution model by integrating the concept of habitat suitability assessment with a distributed hydrological model (DHM) in order to estimate fish population density with particular attention to flow conditions. Generalized linear model (GLM) was employed to evaluate the relationship between population density of fish species and major environmental factors. The target basin was Sagami River in central Japan, where the river reach was divided into 10 sections by estuary, confluences of tributaries, and river-crossing structures (dams, weirs). The DHM was employed to simulate river discharge from 1998 to 2005, which was used to calculate 10 flow indices including mean discharge, 25th and 75th percentile discharge, duration of low and high flows, number of floods. In addition, 5 water quality parameters and 13 other physical conditions (such as basin area, river width, mean diameter of riverbed material, and number of river-crossing structures upstream and downstream) of each river section were considered as environmental variables. In case of Sagami River, 10 habitat variables among them were then selected based on their correlations to avoid multicollinearity. Finally, the best GLM was developed for each species based on Akaike's information criterion. As results, population densities of 16 fish species in Sagami River were modelled, and correlation coefficients between observed and calculated population densities for 10 species were more than 0.70. The key habitat factors for population density varied among fish species. Minimum

  18. Spatial Scaling of Environmental Variables Improves Species-Habitat Models of Fishes in a Small, Sand-Bed Lowland River.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Radinger, Johannes; Wolter, Christian; Kail, Jochem

    2015-01-01

    Habitat suitability and the distinct mobility of species depict fundamental keys for explaining and understanding the distribution of river fishes. In recent years, comprehensive data on river hydromorphology has been mapped at spatial scales down to 100 m, potentially serving high resolution species-habitat models, e.g., for fish. However, the relative importance of specific hydromorphological and in-stream habitat variables and their spatial scales of influence is poorly understood. Applying boosted regression trees, we developed species-habitat models for 13 fish species in a sand-bed lowland river based on river morphological and in-stream habitat data. First, we calculated mean values for the predictor variables in five distance classes (from the sampling site up to 4000 m up- and downstream) to identify the spatial scale that best predicts the presence of fish species. Second, we compared the suitability of measured variables and assessment scores related to natural reference conditions. Third, we identified variables which best explained the presence of fish species. The mean model quality (AUC = 0.78, area under the receiver operating characteristic curve) significantly increased when information on the habitat conditions up- and downstream of a sampling site (maximum AUC at 2500 m distance class, +0.049) and topological variables (e.g., stream order) were included (AUC = +0.014). Both measured and assessed variables were similarly well suited to predict species' presence. Stream order variables and measured cross section features (e.g., width, depth, velocity) were best-suited predictors. In addition, measured channel-bed characteristics (e.g., substrate types) and assessed longitudinal channel features (e.g., naturalness of river planform) were also good predictors. These findings demonstrate (i) the applicability of high resolution river morphological and instream-habitat data (measured and assessed variables) to predict fish presence, (ii) the

  19. Spatial Scaling of Environmental Variables Improves Species-Habitat Models of Fishes in a Small, Sand-Bed Lowland River.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Johannes Radinger

    Full Text Available Habitat suitability and the distinct mobility of species depict fundamental keys for explaining and understanding the distribution of river fishes. In recent years, comprehensive data on river hydromorphology has been mapped at spatial scales down to 100 m, potentially serving high resolution species-habitat models, e.g., for fish. However, the relative importance of specific hydromorphological and in-stream habitat variables and their spatial scales of influence is poorly understood. Applying boosted regression trees, we developed species-habitat models for 13 fish species in a sand-bed lowland river based on river morphological and in-stream habitat data. First, we calculated mean values for the predictor variables in five distance classes (from the sampling site up to 4000 m up- and downstream to identify the spatial scale that best predicts the presence of fish species. Second, we compared the suitability of measured variables and assessment scores related to natural reference conditions. Third, we identified variables which best explained the presence of fish species. The mean model quality (AUC = 0.78, area under the receiver operating characteristic curve significantly increased when information on the habitat conditions up- and downstream of a sampling site (maximum AUC at 2500 m distance class, +0.049 and topological variables (e.g., stream order were included (AUC = +0.014. Both measured and assessed variables were similarly well suited to predict species' presence. Stream order variables and measured cross section features (e.g., width, depth, velocity were best-suited predictors. In addition, measured channel-bed characteristics (e.g., substrate types and assessed longitudinal channel features (e.g., naturalness of river planform were also good predictors. These findings demonstrate (i the applicability of high resolution river morphological and instream-habitat data (measured and assessed variables to predict fish presence, (ii the

  20. Spatial Scaling of Environmental Variables Improves Species-Habitat Models of Fishes in a Small, Sand-Bed Lowland River

    Science.gov (United States)

    Radinger, Johannes; Wolter, Christian; Kail, Jochem

    2015-01-01

    Habitat suitability and the distinct mobility of species depict fundamental keys for explaining and understanding the distribution of river fishes. In recent years, comprehensive data on river hydromorphology has been mapped at spatial scales down to 100 m, potentially serving high resolution species-habitat models, e.g., for fish. However, the relative importance of specific hydromorphological and in-stream habitat variables and their spatial scales of influence is poorly understood. Applying boosted regression trees, we developed species-habitat models for 13 fish species in a sand-bed lowland river based on river morphological and in-stream habitat data. First, we calculated mean values for the predictor variables in five distance classes (from the sampling site up to 4000 m up- and downstream) to identify the spatial scale that best predicts the presence of fish species. Second, we compared the suitability of measured variables and assessment scores related to natural reference conditions. Third, we identified variables which best explained the presence of fish species. The mean model quality (AUC = 0.78, area under the receiver operating characteristic curve) significantly increased when information on the habitat conditions up- and downstream of a sampling site (maximum AUC at 2500 m distance class, +0.049) and topological variables (e.g., stream order) were included (AUC = +0.014). Both measured and assessed variables were similarly well suited to predict species’ presence. Stream order variables and measured cross section features (e.g., width, depth, velocity) were best-suited predictors. In addition, measured channel-bed characteristics (e.g., substrate types) and assessed longitudinal channel features (e.g., naturalness of river planform) were also good predictors. These findings demonstrate (i) the applicability of high resolution river morphological and instream-habitat data (measured and assessed variables) to predict fish presence, (ii) the

  1. Relating FIA data to habitat classifications via tree-based models of canopy cover

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mark D. Nelson; Brian G. Tavernia; Chris Toney; Brian F. Walters

    2012-01-01

    Wildlife species-habitat matrices are used to relate lists of species with abundance of their habitats. The Forest Inventory and Analysis Program provides data on forest composition and structure, but these attributes may not correspond directly with definitions of wildlife habitats. We used FIA tree data and tree crown diameter models to estimate canopy cover, from...

  2. Habitat capacity for Sacramento delta - Life Cycle Modeling of Life History Diversity and Habitat Relationships

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The goals of this project are to examine 1) the relative importance of multiple aquatic habitats (streams, estuaries, and nearshore areas, for example) used by...

  3. Eco-hydrologic model cascades: Simulating land use and climate change impacts on hydrology, hydraulics and habitats for fish and macroinvertebrates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guse, Björn; Kail, Jochem; Radinger, Johannes; Schröder, Maria; Kiesel, Jens; Hering, Daniel; Wolter, Christian; Fohrer, Nicola

    2015-11-15

    Climate and land use changes affect the hydro- and biosphere at different spatial scales. These changes alter hydrological processes at the catchment scale, which impact hydrodynamics and habitat conditions for biota at the river reach scale. In order to investigate the impact of large-scale changes on biota, a cascade of models at different scales is required. Using scenario simulations, the impact of climate and land use change can be compared along the model cascade. Such a cascade of consecutively coupled models was applied in this study. Discharge and water quality are predicted with a hydrological model at the catchment scale. The hydraulic flow conditions are predicted by hydrodynamic models. The habitat suitability under these hydraulic and water quality conditions is assessed based on habitat models for fish and macroinvertebrates. This modelling cascade was applied to predict and compare the impacts of climate- and land use changes at different scales to finally assess their effects on fish and macroinvertebrates. Model simulations revealed that magnitude and direction of change differed along the modelling cascade. Whilst the hydrological model predicted a relevant decrease of discharge due to climate change, the hydraulic conditions changed less. Generally, the habitat suitability for fish decreased but this was strongly species-specific and suitability even increased for some species. In contrast to climate change, the effect of land use change on discharge was negligible. However, land use change had a stronger impact on the modelled nitrate concentrations affecting the abundances of macroinvertebrates. The scenario simulations for the two organism groups illustrated that direction and intensity of changes in habitat suitability are highly species-dependent. Thus, a joined model analysis of different organism groups combined with the results of hydrological and hydrodynamic models is recommended to assess the impact of climate and land use changes on

  4. [Cultural regionalization for Notopterygium incisum based on 3S technology platform. I. Evaluation for growth suitability for N. incisum based on ecological factors analysis by Maxent and ArcGIS model].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Hong-bing; Sun, Hui; Jiang, Shun-yuan; Zhou, Yi; Cao, Wen-long; Ji, Ming-chang; Zhy, Wen-tao; Yan, Han-jing

    2015-03-01

    Growth suitability as assessment indicators for medicinal plants cultivation was proposed based on chemical quality determination and ecological factors analysis by Maxent and ArcGIS model. Notopterygium incisum, an endangered Chinese medicinal plant, was analyzed as a case, its potential distribution areas at different suitability grade and regionalization map were formulated based on growth suitability theory. The results showed that the most suitable habitats is Sichuan province, and more than 60% of the most suitable areawas located in the western Sichuan such as Aba and Ganzi prefectures for N. incisum. The results indicated that habitat altitude, average air temperature in September, and vegetation types were the dominant factors contributing to the grade of plant growth, precipitation and slope were the major factors contributing to notopterol accumulation in its underground parts, while isoimperatorin in its underground parts was negatively corelated with precipitation and slope of its habitat. However, slope as a factor influencing chemical components seemed to be a pseudo corelationship. Therefore, there were distinguishing differences between growth suitability and quality suitability for medicinal plants, which was helpful to further research and practice of cultivation regionalization, wild resource monitoring and large-scale cultivation of traditional Chinese medicine plants.

  5. Modelling and mapping the suitability of European forest formations at 1-km resolution

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Casalegno, Stefano; Amatulli, Giuseppe; Bastrup-Birk, Annemarie

    2011-01-01

    factors. Here, we used the bootstrap-aggregating machine-learning ensemble classifier Random Forest (RF) to derive a 1-km resolution European forest formation suitability map. The statistical model use as inputs more than 6,000 field data forest inventory plots and a large set of environmental variables...

  6. IDENTIFYING OPERATIONAL REQUIREMENTS TO SELECT SUITABLE DECISION MODELS FOR A PUBLIC SECTOR EPROCUREMENT DECISION SUPPORT SYSTEM

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohamed Adil

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Public sector procurement should be a transparent and fair process. Strict legal requirements are enforced on public sector procurement to make it a standardised process. To make fair decisions on selecting suppliers, a practical method which adheres to legal requirements is important. The research that is the base for this paper aimed at identifying a suitable Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis (MCDA method for the specific legal and functional needs of the Maldivian Public Sector. To identify such operational requirements, a set of focus group interviews were conducted in the Maldives with public officials responsible for procurement decision making. Based on the operational requirements identified through focus groups, criteria-based evaluation is done on published MCDA methods to identify the suitable methods for e-procurement decision making. This paper describes the identification of the operational requirements and the results of the evaluation to select suitable decision models for the Maldivian context.

  7. Development of a 1 D hydrodynamic habitat model for the Hippopotamus amphibious as basis for sustainable exploitation of hydroelectric power

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manful, D. Y.; Kaule, G.; Wieprecht, S.; Rees, J.; Hu, W.

    2009-12-01

    Hydroelectric Power (HEP) is proving to be a good alternative to carbon based energy. In the past hydropower especially large scale hydro attracted significant criticism as a result of its impact on the environment. A new breed of hydroelectric dam is in the offing. The aim is to have as little a footprint as possible on the environment in both pre and post construction phases and thus minimize impact on biodiversity whilst producing clean renewable energy. The Bui dam is 400 MW scheme currently under development on the Black Volta River in the Bui national park in Ghana. The reservoir created by the Bui barrage is expected to impact (through inundation) the habitat of two species of hippos know to exist in the park, the Hippopotamus amphibius and the Choeropsis liberiensis. Computer-based models present a unique opportunity to assess quantitatively the impact of the new reservoir on the habitat of the target species in this case the H. amphibious. Until this undertaking, there were very few studies documenting the habitat of the H. amphibious let alone model it. The work and subsequent presentation will show the development of a habitat model for the Hippopotamus amphibius. The Habitat Information retrieval Program based on Streamflow Analysis, in short HIPStrA, is a one dimensional (1D) in-stream, spatially explicit hybrid construct that combines physico-chemical evidence and expert knowledge to forecast river habitat suitability (Hs) for the Hippopotamus amphibius. The version of the model presented is specifically developed to assess the impact of a reservoir created by a hydroelectric dam on potential dwelling areas in the Bui gorge for hippos. Accordingly, this version of HIPStrA simulates a special reservoir suitability index (Rsi), a metric that captures the”hippo friendliness” of any lake or reservoir. The impact of measured and simulated flood events as well as low flows, representing extreme events is also assessed. Recommendations are made for the

  8. Evaluation of a habitat capability model for nongame birds in the Black Hills, South Dakota

    Science.gov (United States)

    Todd R. Mills; Mark A. Rumble; Lester D. Flake

    1996-01-01

    Habitat models, used to predict consequences of land management decisions on wildlife, can have considerable economic effect on management decisions. The Black Hills National Forest uses such a habitat capability model (HABCAP), but its accuracy is largely unknown. We tested this model’s predictive accuracy for nongame birds in 13 vegetative structural stages of...

  9. The Application of FIA-based Data to Wildlife Habitat Modeling: A Comparative Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas C., Jr. Edwards; Gretchen G. Moisen; Tracey S. Frescino; Randall J. Schultz

    2005-01-01

    We evaluated the capability of two types of models, one based on spatially explicit variables derived from FIA data and one using so-called traditional habitat evaluation methods, for predicting the presence of cavity-nesting bird habitat in Fishlake National Forest, Utah. Both models performed equally well, in measures of predictive accuracy, with the FIA-based model...

  10. General basin modeling for site suitability. Draft report 1. Baseline data

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1979-04-01

    This report summarizes work completed by Golder Associates under Task 2 - Site Suitability specifically for modeling of fluid flow and mass transport in sedimentary basins containing thick shale or salt. It also describes ongoing and future work on the above topic. The purpose of the study is to develop a general model for a nuclear waste repository situated in a deep sedimentary basin environment. The model will be used in conjunction with Golder's fluid flow and mass transport codes to study specific aspects of nuclide transport by groundwater flow.

  11. ANALYSIS OF ASSEMBLY SUITABILITY OF THE HYBRID NODE BASED ON WELD DISTORTION PREDICTION MODELS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tomasz Urbański

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available The article presents an analysis of assembly suitability of the innovative hybrid node. Weld distortions are a factor that affects significantly the quality of a structure during its pre-fabrication stage, thus increasing manufacturing costs . For the purposes of this analysis, such distortion forms were chosen that are the highest-ranking ones in the technological hierarchy. The analysis was performed taking advantage of significant parameters in order to demonstrate the possibilities of using mathematical models determined on the basis of a designed experiment to modify the construction technology as early as during the stage of the hybrid node’s manufacture. It was shown that using the above-mentioned theoretical models a technological assessment of the structural component can be performed by selecting such system of parameters that will produce distortions at a level acceptable from the point of view of further assembly suitability.

  12. The Hyper-Envelope Modeling Interface (HEMI): A Novel Approach Illustrated Through Predicting Tamarisk (Tamarix spp.) Habitat in the Western USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graham, Jim; Young, Nick; Jarnevich, Catherine S.; Newman, Greg; Evangelista, Paul; Stohlgren, Thomas J.

    2013-01-01

    Habitat suitability maps are commonly created by modeling a species’ environmental niche from occurrences and environmental characteristics. Here, we introduce the hyper-envelope modeling interface (HEMI), providing a new method for creating habitat suitability models using Bezier surfaces to model a species niche in environmental space. HEMI allows modeled surfaces to be visualized and edited in environmental space based on expert knowledge and does not require absence points for model development. The modeled surfaces require relatively few parameters compared to similar modeling approaches and may produce models that better match ecological niche theory. As a case study, we modeled the invasive species tamarisk (Tamarix spp.) in the western USA. We compare results from HEMI with those from existing similar modeling approaches (including BioClim, BioMapper, and Maxent). We used synthetic surfaces to create visualizations of the various models in environmental space and used modified area under the curve (AUC) statistic and akaike information criterion (AIC) as measures of model performance. We show that HEMI produced slightly better AUC values, except for Maxent and better AIC values overall. HEMI created a model with only ten parameters while Maxent produced a model with over 100 and BioClim used only eight. Additionally, HEMI allowed visualization and editing of the model in environmental space to develop alternative potential habitat scenarios. The use of Bezier surfaces can provide simple models that match our expectations of biological niche models and, at least in some cases, out-perform more complex approaches.

  13. Assessment of Managed Aquifer Recharge Site Suitability Using a GIS and Modeling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Russo, Tess A; Fisher, Andrew T; Lockwood, Brian S

    2015-01-01

    We completed a two-step regional analysis of a coastal groundwater basin to (1) assess regional suitability for managed aquifer recharge (MAR), and (2) quantify the relative impact of MAR activities on groundwater levels and sea water intrusion. The first step comprised an analysis of surface and subsurface hydrologic properties and conditions, using a geographic information system (GIS). Surface and subsurface data coverages were compiled, georeferenced, reclassified, and integrated (including novel approaches for combining related datasets) to derive a spatial distribution of MAR suitability values. In the second step, results from the GIS analysis were used with a regional groundwater model to assess the hydrologic impact of potential MAR placement and operating scenarios. For the region evaluated in this study, the Pajaro Valley Groundwater Basin, California, GIS results suggest that about 7% (15 km2) of the basin may be highly suitable for MAR. Modeling suggests that simulated MAR projects placed near the coast help to reduce sea water intrusion more rapidly, but these projects also result in increased groundwater flows to the ocean. In contrast, projects placed farther inland result in more long-term reduction in sea water intrusion and less groundwater flowing to the ocean. This work shows how combined GIS analysis and modeling can assist with regional water supply planning, including evaluation of options for enhancing groundwater resources. © 2014, National Ground Water Association.

  14. Modelling the negative effects of landscape fragmentation on habitat selection

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Langevelde, van F.

    2015-01-01

    Landscape fragmentation constrains movement of animals between habitat patches. Fragmentation may, therefore, limit the possibilities to explore and select the best habitat patches, and some animals may have to cope with low-quality patches due to these movement constraints. If so, these individuals

  15. Review and Extension of Suitability Assessment Indicators of Weather Model Output for Analyzing Decentralized Energy Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hans Schermeyer

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Electricity from renewable energy sources (RES-E is gaining more and more influence in traditional energy and electricity markets in Europe and around the world. When modeling RES-E feed-in on a high temporal and spatial resolution, energy systems analysts frequently use data generated by numerical weather models as input since there is no spatial inclusive and comprehensive measurement data available. However, the suitability of such model data depends on the research questions at hand and should be inspected individually. This paper focuses on new methodologies to carry out a performance evaluation of solar irradiation data provided by a numerical weather model when investigating photovoltaic feed-in and effects on the electricity grid. Suitable approaches of time series analysis are researched from literature and applied to both model and measurement data. The findings and limits of these approaches are illustrated and a new set of validation indicators is presented. These novel indicators complement the assessment by measuring relevant key figures in energy systems analysis: e.g., gradients in energy supply, maximum values and volatility. Thus, the results of this paper contribute to the scientific community of energy systems analysts and researchers who aim at modeling RES-E feed-in on a high temporal and spatial resolution using weather model data.

  16. A Proposed Model to Assess and Map Irrigation Water Well Suitability Using Geospatial Analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    El-Sayed E. Omran

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Assessing the vulnerability of groundwater is the first step toward careful management of water resources to avoid or, at least, to minimize impacts on agriculture. The objective of this study was to propose a simple method to assess the groundwater quality and to map its spatial variation in terms of suitability for irrigation in the Darb El-Arbaein area, Southwestern Desert, Egypt. Thirty-six surveyed wells were used to assess and map the groundwater quality. For calculating the Water Quality Index (WQI, a total of 20 (13 chemical, two physical, and five calculated parameters were considered e.g., EC, pH, Cl, SAR, B, Zn, iron, Mn, Pb and Cd. The results of analyses were used to propose a water quality model. The different water quality maps were produced using GIS software. The results show that three water samples fall into the moderate WQI. Most of the samples (26 fall into the unsuitable WQI category. Seven samples fall into the suitable WQI category. Groundwater samples that fall into the low salinity hazard class and high WQI can be used for irrigation of most crops and the majority of soils. The WQI for the samples ranges from 47.9 to 88.6. The WQI distribution maps delineating an area of 266.66 ha are suitable for irrigation in villages (3,4 and areas of 382.35 ha are moderately suitability for villages (1,2. Since the final map shows the spatial distribution of irrigation water quality in the area, it is now much easier for a decision maker to assess the water quality for irrigation and to locate the most suitable site for drilling wells. The present study demonstrates high efficiency for GIS to analyze complex spatial data and groundwater quality mapping.

  17. Ecological Model to Predict Potential Habitats of Oncomelania hupensis, the Intermediate Host of Schistosoma japonicum in the Mountainous Regions, China.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hong-Ru Zhu

    Full Text Available Schistosomiasis japonica is a parasitic disease that remains endemic in seven provinces in the People's Republic of China (P.R. China. One of the most important measures in the process of schistosomiasis elimination in P.R. China is control of Oncomelania hupensis, the unique intermediate host snail of Schistosoma japonicum. Compared with plains/swamp and lake regions, the hilly/mountainous regions of schistosomiasis endemic areas are more complicated, which makes the snail survey difficult to conduct precisely and efficiently. There is a pressing call to identify the snail habitats of mountainous regions in an efficient and cost-effective manner.Twelve out of 56 administrative villages distributed with O. hupensis in Eryuan, Yunnan Province, were randomly selected to set up the ecological model. Thirty out of the rest of 78 villages (villages selected for building model were excluded from the villages for validation in Eryuan and 30 out of 89 villages in Midu, Yunnan Province were selected via a chessboard method for model validation, respectively. Nine-year-average Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI and Land Surface Temperature (LST as well as Digital Elevation Model (DEM covering Eryuan and Midu were extracted from MODIS and ASTER satellite images, respectively. Slope, elevation and the distance from every village to its nearest stream were derived from DEM. Suitable survival environment conditions for snails were defined by comparing historical snail presence data and remote sensing derived images. According to the suitable conditions for snails, environment factors, i.e. NDVI, LST, elevation, slope and the distance from every village to its nearest stream, were integrated into an ecological niche model to predict O. hupensis potential habitats in Eryuan and Midu. The evaluation of the model was assessed by comparing the model prediction and field investigation. Then, the consistency rate of model validation was calculated in

  18. Simple Attenauation Models of Metallic Cables Suitable for G.fast Frequencies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pavel Lafata

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Recently, a new xDSL successor called G.fast, which can occupy frequencies up to 106 or 212~MHz, has been introduced in ITU-T G.9700 series of recommendations. Moreover, a new model of transmission characteristics suitable for various types of metallic cables has been designed and described as well. The model is based on 9 parameters specified for each type of metallic cable and can provide accurate estimations. However, its complexity together with the number of required parameters makes its practical application questionable, since the most important metallic cable characteristic, the attenuation, can be estimated using much simpler models. Therefore, two innovative attenuation models suitable for frequencies up to 250 MHz were designed and they will be introduced in this paper. The main motivation was to achieve an accurate approximation of attenuation character for various types of metallic cables, while maintaining low mathematical complexity and a number of necessary parameters. Both models were compared with attenuation characteristics measured for variety types of real metallic cables and also with other standard attenuation models. The results are included in this article as well.

  19. Development and evaluation of habitat models for herpetofauna and small mammals

    Science.gov (United States)

    William M. Block; Michael L. Morrison; Peter E. Scott

    1998-01-01

    We evaluated the ability of discriminant analysis (DA), logistic regression (LR), and multiple regression (MR) to describe habitat use by amphibians, reptiles, and small mammals found in California oak woodlands. We also compared models derived from pitfall and live trapping data for several species. Habitat relations modeled by DA and LR produced similar results,...

  20. Application of a baseflow filter for evaluating model structure suitability of the IHACRES CMD

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, H. S.

    2015-02-01

    The main objective of this study was to assess the predictive uncertainty from the rainfall-runoff model structure coupling a conceptual module (non-linear module) with a metric transfer function module (linear module). The methodology was primarily based on the comparison between the outputs of the rainfall-runoff model and those from an alternative model approach. An alternative model approach was used to minimise uncertainties arising from data and the model structure. A baseflow filter was adopted to better understand deficiencies in the forms of the rainfall-runoff model by avoiding the uncertainties related to data and the model structure. The predictive uncertainty from the model structure was investigated for representative groups of catchments having similar hydrological response characteristics in the upper Murrumbidgee Catchment. In the assessment of model structure suitability, the consistency (or variability) of catchment response over time and space in model performance and parameter values has been investigated to detect problems related to the temporal and spatial variability of the model accuracy. The predictive error caused by model uncertainty was evaluated through analysis of the variability of the model performance and parameters. A graphical comparison of model residuals, effective rainfall estimates and hydrographs was used to determine a model's ability related to systematic model deviation between simulated and observed behaviours and general behavioural differences in the timing and magnitude of peak flows. The model's predictability was very sensitive to catchment response characteristics. The linear module performs reasonably well in the wetter catchments but has considerable difficulties when applied to the drier catchments where a hydrologic response is dominated by quick flow. The non-linear module has a potential limitation in its capacity to capture non-linear processes for converting observed rainfall into effective rainfall in

  1. Habitat suitability under changing climatic conditions for the exotic ambrosia beetle, Cnestus mutilatus (Curculionidae: Scolytinae: Xyleborini) in the southeastern United States.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rabiu Olatinwo; Douglas Streett; Christopher Carlton

    2014-01-01

    The camphor shot borer, Cnestus mutilatus (Blandford) is a nonnative ambrosia beetle first reported in the United States in 1999 at Oktibbeha County in Mississippi. Although C. mutilatus is a major pest of several trees in its native habitat in Asia, it is not yet a major pest in the United States. However, the range expansion in recent years across the southeastern...

  2. Diversity and Habitat Niche Modeling of Candidate Archaeal Phylum Aigarchaeota

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alba, T. W.; Goertz, G.; Williams, A. J.; Cole, J. K.; Murugapiran, S. K.; Dodsworth, J. A.; Hedlund, B. P.

    2013-12-01

    ';Aigarchaeota' (formerly known as pSL4 and Hot Water Crenarchaeotic Group I (HWCGI)) is a candidate phylum of Archaea known only by 16S rRNA gene fragments from cultivation-independent microbial surveys and a single composite genome from Candidatus ';Caldiarchaeum subterraneum', an inhabitant of a subterranean gold mine in Japan. Sequences reported in various publications are found exclusively in geothermal settings, but a comprehensive assessment has not yet been performed. We mined public databases for 16S rRNA gene sequences related to known ';Aigarchaeota' and used a combination of approaches to rigorously define the phylogenetic boundaries of the phylum. The analyses supported the proposed relationship between ';Aigarchaeota', Thaumarchaeota, Crenarchaeota, and Korarchaeota in the so-called 'TACK superphylum' and identified ~200 16S rRNA genes and gene fragments belonging to ';Aigarchaeota', including those recovered from terrestrial geothermal systems on several continents (North America, Asia, Africa, Europe, and Oceania) and marine geothermal and subsurface samples in both the Atlantic and Pacific. ';Aigarchaeota' belonged to at least three family- to order-level groups and at least seven genus-level groups. All genus-level groups were recovered from geographically distant locations, suggesting a global distribution within amenable habitats. ';Aigarchaeota'-specific primers for the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification of 16S rRNA genes were designed using SP-Designer and reviewed using the Ribosomal Database Project Probe Match tool. The primers will be used to determine the presence and abundance of ';Aigarchaeota' in a wide variety of samples from terrestrial geothermal systems in the western U.S. and Asia. These phylogenetic data, along with a large geochemical database, will be analyzed using multivariate statistics to develop biogeographic and habitat niche models for ';Aigarchaeota'. This study offers the first coherent view of the

  3. Food-web models predict species abundances in response to habitat change.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicholas J Gotelli

    2006-10-01

    Full Text Available Plant and animal population sizes inevitably change following habitat loss, but the mechanisms underlying these changes are poorly understood. We experimentally altered habitat volume and eliminated top trophic levels of the food web of invertebrates that inhabit rain-filled leaves of the carnivorous pitcher plant Sarracenia purpurea. Path models that incorporated food-web structure better predicted population sizes of food-web constituents than did simple keystone species models, models that included only autecological responses to habitat volume, or models including both food-web structure and habitat volume. These results provide the first experimental confirmation that trophic structure can determine species abundances in the face of habitat loss.

  4. Habitat loss, not fragmentation, drives occurrence patterns of Canada lynx at the southern range periphery.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Megan L Hornseth

    Full Text Available Peripheral populations often experience more extreme environmental conditions than those in the centre of a species' range. Such extreme conditions include habitat loss, defined as a reduction in the amount of suitable habitat, as well as habitat fragmentation, which involves the breaking apart of habitat independent of habitat loss. The 'threshold hypothesis' predicts that organisms will be more affected by habitat fragmentation when the amount of habitat on the landscape is scarce (i.e., less than 30% than when habitat is abundant, implying that habitat fragmentation may compound habitat loss through changes in patch size and configuration. Alternatively, the 'flexibility hypothesis' predicts that individuals may respond to increased habitat disturbance by altering their selection patterns and thereby reducing sensitivity to habitat loss and fragmentation. While the range of Canada lynx (Lynx canadensis has contracted during recent decades, the relative importance of habitat loss and habitat fragmentation on this phenomenon is poorly understood. We used a habitat suitability model for lynx to identify suitable land cover in Ontario, and contrasted occupancy patterns across landscapes differing in cover, to test the 'threshold hypothesis' and 'flexibility hypothesis'. When suitable land cover was widely available, lynx avoided areas with less than 30% habitat and were unaffected by habitat fragmentation. However, on landscapes with minimal suitable land cover, lynx occurrence was not related to either habitat loss or habitat fragmentation, indicating support for the 'flexibility hypothesis'. We conclude that lynx are broadly affected by habitat loss, and not specifically by habitat fragmentation, although occurrence patterns are flexible and dependent on landscape condition. We suggest that lynx may alter their habitat selection patterns depending on local conditions, thereby reducing their sensitivity to anthropogenically-driven habitat

  5. Habitat loss, not fragmentation, drives occurrence patterns of Canada lynx at the southern range periphery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hornseth, Megan L; Walpole, Aaron A; Walton, Lyle R; Bowman, Jeff; Ray, Justina C; Fortin, Marie-Josée; Murray, Dennis L

    2014-01-01

    Peripheral populations often experience more extreme environmental conditions than those in the centre of a species' range. Such extreme conditions include habitat loss, defined as a reduction in the amount of suitable habitat, as well as habitat fragmentation, which involves the breaking apart of habitat independent of habitat loss. The 'threshold hypothesis' predicts that organisms will be more affected by habitat fragmentation when the amount of habitat on the landscape is scarce (i.e., less than 30%) than when habitat is abundant, implying that habitat fragmentation may compound habitat loss through changes in patch size and configuration. Alternatively, the 'flexibility hypothesis' predicts that individuals may respond to increased habitat disturbance by altering their selection patterns and thereby reducing sensitivity to habitat loss and fragmentation. While the range of Canada lynx (Lynx canadensis) has contracted during recent decades, the relative importance of habitat loss and habitat fragmentation on this phenomenon is poorly understood. We used a habitat suitability model for lynx to identify suitable land cover in Ontario, and contrasted occupancy patterns across landscapes differing in cover, to test the 'threshold hypothesis' and 'flexibility hypothesis'. When suitable land cover was widely available, lynx avoided areas with less than 30% habitat and were unaffected by habitat fragmentation. However, on landscapes with minimal suitable land cover, lynx occurrence was not related to either habitat loss or habitat fragmentation, indicating support for the 'flexibility hypothesis'. We conclude that lynx are broadly affected by habitat loss, and not specifically by habitat fragmentation, although occurrence patterns are flexible and dependent on landscape condition. We suggest that lynx may alter their habitat selection patterns depending on local conditions, thereby reducing their sensitivity to anthropogenically-driven habitat alteration.

  6. Spatial Models of Abundance and Habitat Preferences of Commerson's and Peale's Dolphin in Southern Patagonian Waters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dellabianca, Natalia A; Pierce, Graham J; Raya Rey, Andrea; Scioscia, Gabriela; Miller, David L; Torres, Mónica A; Paso Viola, M Natalia; Goodall, R Natalie P; Schiavini, Adrián C M

    2016-01-01

    Commerson's dolphins (Cephalorhynchus c. commersonii) and Peale's dolphins (Lagenorhynchus australis) are two of the most common species of cetaceans in the coastal waters of southwest South Atlantic Ocean. Both species are listed as Data Deficient by the IUCN, mainly due to the lack of information about population sizes and trends. The goal of this study was to build spatially explicit models for the abundance of both species in relation to environmental variables using data collected during eight scientific cruises along the Patagonian shelf. Spatial models were constructed using generalized additive models. In total, 88 schools (212 individuals) of Commerson's dolphin and 134 schools (465 individuals) of Peale's dolphin were recorded in 8,535 km surveyed. Commerson's dolphin was found less than 60 km from shore; whereas Peale's dolphins occurred over a wider range of distances from the coast, the number of animals sighted usually being larger near or far from the coast. Fitted models indicate overall abundances of approximately 22,000 Commerson's dolphins and 20,000 Peale's dolphins in the total area studied. This work provides the first large-scale abundance estimate for Peale's dolphin in the Atlantic Ocean and an update of population size for Commerson's dolphin. Additionally, our results contribute to baseline data on suitable habitat conditions for both species in southern Patagonia, which is essential for the implementation of adequate conservation measures.

  7. Modeling habitat and environmental factors affecting mosquito abundance in Chesapeake, Virginia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bellows, Alan Scott

    The models I present in this dissertation were designed to enable mosquito control agencies in the mid-Atlantic region that oversee large jurisdictions to rapidly track the spatial and temporal distributions of mosquito species, especially those species known to be vectors of eastern equine encephalitis and West Nile virus. I was able to keep these models streamlined, user-friendly, and not cost-prohibitive using empirically based digital data to analyze mosquito-abundance patterns in real landscapes. This research is presented in three major chapters: (II) a series of semi-static habitat suitability indices (HSI) grounded on well-documented associations between mosquito abundance and environmental variables, (III) a dynamic model for predicting both spatial and temporal mosquito abundance based on a topographic soil moisture index and recent weather patterns, and (IV) a set of protocols laid out to aid mosquito control agencies for the use of these models. The HSIs (Chapter II) were based on relationships of mosquitoes to digital surrogates of soil moisture and vegetation characteristics. These models grouped mosquitoes species derived from similarities in habitat requirements, life-cycle type, and vector competence. Quantification of relationships was determined using multiple linear regression models. As in Chapter II, relationships between mosquito abundance and environmental factors in Chapter III were quantified using regression models. However, because this model was, in part, a function of changes in weather patterns, it enables the prediction of both 'where' and 'when' mosquito outbreaks are likely to occur. This model is distinctive among similar studies in the literature because of my use of NOAA's NEXRAD Doppler radar (3-hr precipitation accumulation data) to quantify the spatial and temporal distributions in precipitation accumulation. \\ Chapter IV is unique among the chapters in this dissertation because in lieu of presenting new research, it

  8. Models for mapping potential habitat at landscape scales: an example using northern spotted owls.

    Science.gov (United States)

    William C. McComb; Michael T. McGrath; Thomas A. Spies; David. Vesely

    2002-01-01

    We are assessing the potential for current and alternative policies in the Oregon Coast Range to affect habitat capability for a suite of forest resources. We provide an example of a spatially explicit habitat capability model for northern spotted owls (Strix occidentalis caurina)to illustrate the approach we are taking to assess potential changes...

  9. Using occupancy and population models to assess habitat conservation opportunities for an isolated carnivore population

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wayne Spencer; Heather Rustigian-Romsos; James Strittholt; Robert Scheller; William Zielinski; Richard Truex

    2011-01-01

    An isolated population of the fisher (Martes pennanti) in the southern Sierra Nevada, California, is threatened by small size and habitat alteration from wildfires, fuels management, and other factors. We assessed the population’s status and conservation options for its habitat using a spatially explicit population model coupled with a...

  10. Habitat suitability, threats and conservation strategies of Hump-nosed Pit Viper Hypnale hymnal Merrem (Reptilia: Viperidae) found in Western Ghats, Goa, India

    OpenAIRE

    N S Sawant; T.D. Jadhav; S.K. Shyama

    2010-01-01

    Recent studies indicate that most species are best conserved in their natural community, which results in niche conservation. Depletion of any species is an irreversible change. In the present study the habitat ecology, threats and conservation strategies for the Hump-nosed Pit Viper Hypnale hypnale are suggested. The present study was undertaken in some protected areas (PAs) of Goa and the cashew plantations adjoining these PAs. H. hypnale prefers cool and moist places; most of the females o...

  11. Selecting a Conservation Surrogate Species for Small Fragmented Habitats Using Ecological Niche Modelling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nekaris, K. Anne-Isola; Arnell, Andrew P.; Svensson, Magdalena S.

    2015-01-01

    Simple Summary Large “charismatic” animals (with widespread popular appeal) are often used as flagship species to raise awareness for conservation. Deforestation and forest fragmentation are among the main threats to biodiversity, and in many places such species are disappearing. In this paper we aim to find a suitable species among the less charismatic animal species left in the fragmented forests of South-western Sri Lanka. We selected ten candidates, using a questionnaire survey along with computer modelling of their distributions. The red slender loris and the fishing cat came out as finalists as they were both appealing to local people, and fulfilled selected ecological criteria. Abstract Flagship species are traditionally large, charismatic animals used to rally conservation efforts. Accepted flagship definitions suggest they need only fulfil a strategic role, unlike umbrella species that are used to shelter cohabitant taxa. The criteria used to select both flagship and umbrella species may not stand up in the face of dramatic forest loss, where remaining fragments may only contain species that do not suit either set of criteria. The Cinderella species concept covers aesthetically pleasing and overlooked species that fulfil the criteria of flagships or umbrellas. Such species are also more likely to occur in fragmented habitats. We tested Cinderella criteria on mammals in the fragmented forests of the Sri Lankan Wet Zone. We selected taxa that fulfilled both strategic and ecological roles. We created a shortlist of ten species, and from a survey of local perceptions highlighted two finalists. We tested these for umbrella characteristics against the original shortlist, utilizing Maximum Entropy (MaxEnt) modelling, and analysed distribution overlap using ArcGIS. The criteria highlighted Loris tardigradus tardigradus and Prionailurus viverrinus as finalists, with the former having highest flagship potential. We suggest Cinderella species can be effective

  12. Models of Marine Fish Biodiversity: Assessing Predictors from Three Habitat Classification Schemes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yates, Katherine L; Mellin, Camille; Caley, M Julian; Radford, Ben T; Meeuwig, Jessica J

    2016-01-01

    Prioritising biodiversity conservation requires knowledge of where biodiversity occurs. Such knowledge, however, is often lacking. New technologies for collecting biological and physical data coupled with advances in modelling techniques could help address these gaps and facilitate improved management outcomes. Here we examined the utility of environmental data, obtained using different methods, for developing models of both uni- and multivariate biodiversity metrics. We tested which biodiversity metrics could be predicted best and evaluated the performance of predictor variables generated from three types of habitat data: acoustic multibeam sonar imagery, predicted habitat classification, and direct observer habitat classification. We used boosted regression trees (BRT) to model metrics of fish species richness, abundance and biomass, and multivariate regression trees (MRT) to model biomass and abundance of fish functional groups. We compared model performance using different sets of predictors and estimated the relative influence of individual predictors. Models of total species richness and total abundance performed best; those developed for endemic species performed worst. Abundance models performed substantially better than corresponding biomass models. In general, BRT and MRTs developed using predicted habitat classifications performed less well than those using multibeam data. The most influential individual predictor was the abiotic categorical variable from direct observer habitat classification and models that incorporated predictors from direct observer habitat classification consistently outperformed those that did not. Our results show that while remotely sensed data can offer considerable utility for predictive modelling, the addition of direct observer habitat classification data can substantially improve model performance. Thus it appears that there are aspects of marine habitats that are important for modelling metrics of fish biodiversity that are

  13. Habitat modelling limitations - Puck Bay, Baltic Sea - a case study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan Marcin Węsławski

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available The Natura 2000 sites and the Coastal Landscape Park in a shallow marine bay in the southern Baltic have been studied in detail for the distribution of benthic macroorganisms, species assemblages and seabed habitats. The relatively small Inner Puck Bay (104.8 km2 is one of the most thoroughly investigated marine areas in the Baltic: research has been carried out there continuously for over 50 years. Six physical parameters regarded as critically important for the marine benthos (depth, minimal temperature, maximum salinity, light, wave intensity and sediment type were summarized on a GIS map showing unified patches of seabed and the near-bottom water conditions. The occurrence of uniform seabed forms is weakly correlated with the distributions of individual species or multi-species assemblages. This is partly explained by the characteristics of the local macrofauna, which is dominated by highly tolerant, eurytopic species with opportunistic strategies. The history and timing of the assemblage formation also explains this weak correlation. The distribution of assemblages formed by long-living, structural species (Zostera marina and other higher plants shows the history of recovery following earlier disturbances. In the study area, these communities are still in the stage of recovery and recolonization, and their present distribution does not as yet match the distribution of the physical environmental conditions favourable to them. Our results show up the limitations of distribution modelling in coastal waters, where the history of anthropogenic disturbances can distort the picture of the present-day environmental control of biota distributions.

  14. The global distribution of deep-water Antipatharia habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yesson, Chris; Bedford, Faye; Rogers, Alex D.; Taylor, Michelle L.

    2017-11-01

    Antipatharia are a diverse group of corals with many species found in deep water. Many Antipatharia are habitat for associates, have extreme longevity and some species can occur beyond 8500 m depth. As they are major constituents of'coral gardens', which are Vulnerable Marine Ecosystems (VMEs), knowledge of their distribution and environmental requirements is an important pre-requisite for informed conservation planning particularly where the expense and difficulty of deep-sea sampling prohibits comprehensive surveys. This study uses a global database of Antipatharia distribution data to perform habitat suitability modelling using the Maxent methodology to estimate the global extent of black coral habitat suitability. The model of habitat suitability is driven by temperature but there is notable influence from other variables of topography, surface productivity and oxygen levels. This model can be used to predict areas of suitable habitat, which can be useful for conservation planning. The global distribution of Antipatharia habitat suitability shows a marked contrast with the distribution of specimen observations, indicating that many potentially suitable areas have not been sampled, and that sampling effort has been disproportionate to shallow, accessible areas inside marine protected areas (MPAs). Although 25% of Antipatharia observations are located in MPAs, only 7-8% of predicted suitable habitat is protected, which is short of the Convention on Biological Diversity target to protect 10% of ocean habitats by 2020.

  15. Modeling larval malaria vector habitat locations using landscape features and cumulative precipitation measures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCann, Robert S; Messina, Joseph P; MacFarlane, David W; Bayoh, M Nabie; Vulule, John M; Gimnig, John E; Walker, Edward D

    2014-06-06

    Predictive models of malaria vector larval habitat locations may provide a basis for understanding the spatial determinants of malaria transmission. We used four landscape variables (topographic wetness index [TWI], soil type, land use-land cover, and distance to stream) and accumulated precipitation to model larval habitat locations in a region of western Kenya through two methods: logistic regression and random forest. Additionally, we used two separate data sets to account for variation in habitat locations across space and over time. Larval habitats were more likely to be present in locations with a lower slope to contributing area ratio (i.e. TWI), closer to streams, with agricultural land use relative to nonagricultural land use, and in friable clay/sandy clay loam soil and firm, silty clay/clay soil relative to friable clay soil. The probability of larval habitat presence increased with increasing accumulated precipitation. The random forest models were more accurate than the logistic regression models, especially when accumulated precipitation was included to account for seasonal differences in precipitation. The most accurate models for the two data sets had area under the curve (AUC) values of 0.864 and 0.871, respectively. TWI, distance to the nearest stream, and precipitation had the greatest mean decrease in Gini impurity criteria in these models. This study demonstrates the usefulness of random forest models for larval malaria vector habitat modeling. TWI and distance to the nearest stream were the two most important landscape variables in these models. Including accumulated precipitation in our models improved the accuracy of larval habitat location predictions by accounting for seasonal variation in the precipitation. Finally, the sampling strategy employed here for model parameterization could serve as a framework for creating predictive larval habitat models to assist in larval control efforts.

  16. Using urban forest assessment tools to model bird habitat potential

    Science.gov (United States)

    Susannah B. Lerman; Keith H. Nislow; David J. Nowak; Stephen DeStefano; David I. King; D. Todd. Jones-Farrand

    2014-01-01

    The alteration of forest cover and the replacement of native vegetation with buildings, roads, exotic vegetation, and other urban features pose one of the greatest threats to global biodiversity. As more land becomes slated for urban development, identifying effective urban forest wildlife management tools becomes paramount to ensure the urban forest provides habitat...

  17. Proceedings of a workshop on the development and evaluation of habitat suitability criteria: A compilation of papers and discussions presented at Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado, December 8-12, 1986

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bovee, Ken; Zuboy, J.R.

    1988-01-01

    The development of reliable habitat suitability criteria is critical to the successful implementation of the Instream Flow Incremental Methodology (IFIM), or any other habitat based evaluation technology. It is also a fascinating topic of research, for several reasons. First, the “science” of habitat quantification is relatively young. Descriptions of habitat use and partitioning can be traced back to Darwin, if not further. Attempts to actually quantify habitat use can be found predominantly during the last two decades, with most of the activity occurring in about the last five years. Second, this work is challenging because we are usually working with fish or some other organism that lives out of sight in an environment that is foreign to humans. Most of the data collection techniques that have been developed for standard fisheries work are unsuited, without modification, for criteria development. These factors make anyone involved in this type of research a pioneer, of sorts. Pioneers often make new and wonderful discoveries, but they also sometimes get lost. In our opinion, however, there is an even more rewarding aspect to criteria development research. It seems that the field of biology has tended to become increasingly clinical over the years. Criteria development demands the unobtrusive observation of organisms in their natural environment, a fact that allows the biological to be a naturalist and still get paid for it. The relative youth and importance of habitat quantification have resulted in rapid advancements in the state of the art. The expansion of methods is vividly demonstrated simply by comparing the two Instream Flow Information Papers written on the subject in 1978 and in 1986. One of the missions of the Aquatic Systems Branch (formerly the Instream Flow Group) is to serve as a clearinghouse for new techniques and methods. In keeping with this role, a workshop was conducted during December 1986 to discuss current and newly evolving methods

  18. Site Suitability Assessment with Dynamic Wake Meandering Model. A Certification Point of View.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomas Bayo, Ricard; Parro, Gema

    2015-04-01

    Establishment of large wind farms requires enormous investments putting steadily greater emphasis on optimal topology design and control of these. This requires not only an optimization of the power output, but also the development of strategies to cope with the higher loading expected. The cornerstone of such strategies is a realistic characterization and modelling of the wake flow field inside the wind farm, beyond Frandsen's equivalent turbulence method. Whereas Frandsen model has been mostly considered in the industry so far, it has not proved completely satisfactory when facing current problems such as wake effects on turbines placed at short distances or consequences of half wake for turbine loading. The objective of the present work is to address these questions from a certification point of view within the framework of Risoe's Dynamic Wake Meandering (DWM) model. The DWM model is based on the combination of three parts: modeling of quasi-steady wake deficits, a stochastic model of the downwind wake meandering and an added or self-generated wake turbulence. The analysis carried out is two-fold: First, a comparative study of the wake effects generated in Frandsen model as well as in various realizations of the DWM model is performed. For this purpose wake-induced loads are calculated using two different aeroelastic codes: HAWC2 and Bladed. Second, the applicability of DWM for the assessment of wind turbines under site-specific conditions is discussed and the conclusions summarized in a Recommended Practice. Clear prescriptions are thereby provided for the use of DWMM for site suitability assessments, including the aforementioned extreme situations, along with the interpretation of the future version of the IEC 61400-1 standards.

  19. Alaska Steller Sea Lion Habitat Model Satellite Telemetry and Environmental Data, 2000-2012

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The at-sea habitat use of Steller sea lions was modeled from location and dive behavior data obtained from the deployment of satellite-linked telemetry tags on sea...

  20. Alaska Northern Fur Seal Foraging Habitat Model Stable Isotope Data, 2006-2008

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — These data sets were used by Zeppelin et al. (2015) to model northern fur seal foraging habitats based on stable isotope values measured in plasma and red blood...

  1. Human Organotypic Lung Tumor Models: Suitable For Preclinical 18F-FDG PET-Imaging.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Fecher

    Full Text Available Development of predictable in vitro tumor models is a challenging task due to the enormous complexity of tumors in vivo. The closer the resemblance of these models to human tumor characteristics, the more suitable they are for drug-development and -testing. In the present study, we generated a complex 3D lung tumor test system based on acellular rat lungs. A decellularization protocol was established preserving the architecture, important ECM components and the basement membrane of the lung. Human lung tumor cells cultured on the scaffold formed cluster and exhibited an up-regulation of the carcinoma-associated marker mucin1 as well as a reduced proliferation rate compared to respective 2D culture. Additionally, employing functional imaging with 2-deoxy-2-[18F]fluoro-D-glucose positron emission tomography (FDG-PET these tumor cell cluster could be detected and tracked over time. This approach allowed monitoring of a targeted tyrosine kinase inhibitor treatment in the in vitro lung tumor model non-destructively. Surprisingly, FDG-PET assessment of single tumor cell cluster on the same scaffold exhibited differences in their response to therapy, indicating heterogeneity in the lung tumor model. In conclusion, our complex lung tumor test system features important characteristics of tumors and its microenvironment and allows monitoring of tumor growth and -metabolism in combination with functional imaging. In longitudinal studies, new therapeutic approaches and their long-term effects can be evaluated to adapt treatment regimes in future.

  2. Position Sensorless Control of IPMSMs Based on a Novel Flux Model Suitable for Maximum Torque Control

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matsumoto, Atsushi; Hasegawa, Masaru; Matsui, Keiju

    In this paper, a novel position sensorless control method for interior permanent magnet synchronous motors (IPMSMs) that is based on a novel flux model suitable for maximum torque control has been proposed. Maximum torque per ampere (MTPA) control is often utilized for driving IPMSMs with the maximum efficiency. In order to implement this control, generally, the parameters are required to be accurate. However, the inductance varies dramatically because of magnetic saturation, which has been one of the most important problems in recent years. Therefore, the conventional MTPA control method fails to achieve maximum efficiency for IPMSMs because of parameter mismatches. In this paper, first, a novel flux model has been proposed for realizing the position sensorless control of IPMSMs, which is insensitive to Lq. In addition, in this paper, it has been shown that the proposed flux model can approximately estimate the maximum torque control (MTC) frame, which as a new coordinate aligned with the current vector for MTPA control. Next, in this paper, a precise estimation method for the MTC frame has been proposed. By this method, highly accurate maximum torque control can be achieved. A decoupling control algorithm based on the proposed model has also been addressed in this paper. Finally, some experimental results demonstrate the feasibility and effectiveness of the proposed method.

  3. Are Calanus spp. shifting poleward in the North Atlantic? A habitat modelling approach

    KAUST Repository

    Chust, Guillem

    2013-09-16

    In the last decade, the analysis based on Continuous Plankton Recorder survey in the eastern North Atlantic Ocean detected one of the most striking examples of marine poleward migration related to sea warming. The main objective of this study is to verify the poleward shift of zooplankton species (Calanus finmarchicus, C. glacialis, C. helgolandicus, C. hyperboreus) for which distributional changes have been recorded in the North Atlantic Ocean and to assess how much of this shift was triggered by sea warming, using Generalized Additive Models. To this end, the population gravity centre of observed data was compared with that of a series of simulation experiments: (i) a model using only climate factors (i.e. niche-based model) to simulate species habitat suitability, (ii) a model using only temporal and spatial terms to reconstruct the population distribution, and (iii) a model using both factors combined, using a subset of observations as independent dataset for validation. Our findings show that only C. finmarchicus had a consistent poleward shift, triggered by sea warming, estimated in 8.1 km per decade in the North Atlantic (16.5 per decade for the northeast), which is substantially lower than previous works at the assemblage level and restricted to the Northeast Atlantic. On the contrary, C. helgolandicus is expanding in all directions, although its northern distribution limit in the North Sea has shifted northward. Calanus glacialis and C. hyperboreus, which have the geographic centres of populations mainly in the NW Atlantic, showed a slight southward shift, probably responding to cool water penetrating southward in the Labrador Current. Our approach, supported by high model accuracy, shows its power in detecting species latitudinal shifts and identifying its causes, since the trend of occurrence observed data is influenced by the sampling frequency, which has progressively concentrated to lower latitudes with time. © 2013 © 2013 International Council for

  4. Poor transferability of species distribution models for a pelagic predator, the grey petrel, indicates contrasting habitat preferences across ocean basins.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leigh G Torres

    Full Text Available Species distribution models (SDMs are increasingly applied in conservation management to predict suitable habitat for poorly known populations. High predictive performance of SDMs is evident in validations performed within the model calibration area (interpolation, but few studies have assessed SDM transferability to novel areas (extrapolation, particularly across large spatial scales or pelagic ecosystems. We performed rigorous SDM validation tests on distribution data from three populations of a long-ranging marine predator, the grey petrel Procellaria cinerea, to assess model transferability across the Southern Hemisphere (25-65°S. Oceanographic data were combined with tracks of grey petrels from two remote sub-Antarctic islands (Antipodes and Kerguelen using boosted regression trees to generate three SDMs: one for each island population, and a combined model. The predictive performance of these models was assessed using withheld tracking data from within the model calibration areas (interpolation, and from a third population, Marion Island (extrapolation. Predictive performance was assessed using k-fold cross validation and point biserial correlation. The two population-specific SDMs included the same predictor variables and suggested birds responded to the same broad-scale oceanographic influences. However, all model validation tests, including of the combined model, determined strong interpolation but weak extrapolation capabilities. These results indicate that habitat use reflects both its availability and bird preferences, such that the realized distribution patterns differ for each population. The spatial predictions by the three SDMs were compared with tracking data and fishing effort to demonstrate the conservation pitfalls of extrapolating SDMs outside calibration regions. This exercise revealed that SDM predictions would have led to an underestimate of overlap with fishing effort and potentially misinformed bycatch mitigation

  5. Suitability of the water balance model LARSIM to determine the impact of climatic change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gerlinger, K.

    2003-04-01

    has to be determined. If the model uncertainty predominates the possible effect of climate change the model is not suitable to detect future changes. Therefore, the results of the reliability test of the used water balance model will be presented and compared to the expected possible future changes in precipitation and temperature and their impacts on the hydrological cycle.

  6. Terrestrial Permafrost Models of Martian Habitats and Inhabitants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilichinsky, D.

    2011-12-01

    The terrestrial permafrost is the only rich depository of viable ancient microorganisms on Earth, and can be used as a bridge to possible Martian life forms and shallow subsurface habitats where the probability of finding life is highest. Since there is a place for water, the requisite condition for life, the analogous models are more or less realistic. If life ever existed on Mars, traces might have been preserved and could be found at depth within permafrost. The age of the terrestrial isolates corresponds to the longevity of the frozen state of the embedding strata, with the oldest known dating back to the late Pliocene in Arctic and late Miocene in Antarctica. Permafrost on Earth and Mars vary in age, from a few million years on Earth to a few billion years on Mars. Such a difference in time scale would have a significant impact on the possibility of preserving life on Mars, which is why the longevity of life forms preserved within terrestrial permafrost can only be an approximate model for Mars. 1. A number of studies indicate that the Antarctic cryosphere began to develop on the Eocene-Oligocene boundary, after the isolation of the continent. Permafrost degradation is only possible if mean annual ground temperature, -28°C now, rise above freezing, i.e., a significant warming to above 25°C is required. There is no evidence of such sharp temperature increase, which indicates that the climate and geological history was favorable to persistence of pre-Pliocene permafrost. These oldest relics (~30Myr) are possibly to be found at high hypsometric levels of ice-free areas (Dry Valleys and nearby mountains). It is desirable to test the layers for the presence of viable cells. The limiting age, if one exists, within this ancient permafrost, where the viable organisms were no longer present, could be established as the limit for life preservation below 0oC. Positive results will extend the known temporal limits of life in permafrost. 2. Even in this case, the age of

  7. Suitability of Water Harvesting in the Upper Blue Nile Basin, Ethiopia: A First Step towards a Mesoscale Hydrological Modeling Framework

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yihun T. Dile

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Extreme rainfall variability has been one of the major factors to famine and environmental degradation in Ethiopia. The potential for water harvesting in the Upper Blue Nile Basin was assessed using two GIS-based Multicriteria Evaluation methods: (1 a Boolean approach to locate suitable areas for in situ and ex situ systems and (2 a weighted overlay analysis to classify suitable areas into different water harvesting suitability levels. The sensitivity of the results was analyzed to the influence given to different constraining factors. A large part of the basin was suitable for water harvesting: the Boolean analysis showed that 36% of the basin was suitable for in situ and ex situ systems, while the weighted overlay analysis showed that 6–24% of the basin was highly suitable. Rainfall has the highest influence on suitability for water harvesting. Implementing water harvesting in nonagricultural land use types may further increase the benefit. Assessing water harvesting suitability at the larger catchment scale lays the foundation for modeling of water harvesting at mesoscale, which enables analysis of the potential and implications of upscaling of water harvesting practices for building resilience against climatic shocks. A complete water harvesting suitability study requires socioeconomic analysis and stakeholder consultation.

  8. Modelling a suitable location for Urban Solid Waste Management using AHP method and GIS -A geospatial approach and MCDM Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iqbal, M.; Islam, A.; Hossain, A.; Mustaque, S.

    2016-12-01

    Multi-Criteria Decision Making(MCDM) is advanced analytical method to evaluate appropriate result or decision from multiple criterion environment. Present time in advanced research, MCDM technique is progressive analytical process to evaluate a logical decision from various conflict. In addition, Present day Geospatial approach (e.g. Remote sensing and GIS) also another advanced technical approach in a research to collect, process and analyze various spatial data at a time. GIS and Remote sensing together with the MCDM technique could be the best platform to solve a complex decision making process. These two latest process combined very effectively used in site selection for solid waste management in urban policy. The most popular MCDM technique is Weighted Linear Method (WLC) where Analytical Hierarchy Process (AHP) is another popular and consistent techniques used in worldwide as dependable decision making. Consequently, the main objective of this study is improving a AHP model as MCDM technique with Geographic Information System (GIS) to select a suitable landfill site for urban solid waste management. Here AHP technique used as a MCDM tool to select the best suitable landfill location for urban solid waste management. To protect the urban environment in a sustainable way municipal waste needs an appropriate landfill site considering environmental, geological, social and technical aspect of the region. A MCDM model generate from five class related which related to environmental, geological, social and technical using AHP method and input the result set in GIS for final model location for urban solid waste management. The final suitable location comes out that 12.2% of the area corresponds to 22.89 km2 considering the total study area. In this study, Keraniganj sub-district of Dhaka district in Bangladesh is consider as study area which is densely populated city currently undergoes an unmanaged waste management system especially the suitable landfill sites for

  9. Multilevel Model of Planetary Boundary-layer Suitable for use with Mesoscale Dynamic Models

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Busch, N. E.; Chang, S. W.; Anthes, R. A.

    1976-01-01

    In this paper a simple model of the planetary boundary layer (PBL) is proposed. The surface layer is modeled according to established similarity theory. Above the surface layer a prognostic equation for the mixing length is introduced. The time-dependent mixing length is a function of the PBL...... characteristics, including the height of the capping inversion, the local friction velocity and the surface heat flux. In a preliminary experiment, the behavior of the PBL is compared with observations from the Great Plains Experiment....

  10. Habitat modeling for brown trout population in alpine region of Slovenia with focus on determination of preference functions, fuzzy rules and fuzzy sets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santl, Saso; Carf, Masa; Preseren, Tanja; Jenic, Aljaz

    2013-04-01

    Water withdrawals and consequently reduction of discharges in river streams for different water uses (hydro power, irrigation, etc.) usually impoverish habitat suitability for naturally present river fish fauna. In Slovenia reduction of suitable habitats resulting from water abstractions frequently impacts local brown trout (Salmo truta) populations. This is the reason for establishment of habitat modeling which can qualitatively and quantitatively support decision making for determination of the environmental flow and other mitigation measures. Paper introduces applied methodology for habitat modeling where input data preparation and elaboration with required accuracy has to be considered. For model development four (4) representative and heterogeneous sampling sites were chosen. Two (2) sampling sections were located within the sections with small hydropower plants and were considered as sections affected by water abstractions. The other two (2) sampling sections were chosen where there are no existing water abstractions. Precise bathymetric mapping for chosen river sections has been performed. Topographic data and series of discharge and water level measurements enabled establishment of calibrated hydraulic models, which provide data on water velocities and depths for analyzed discharges. Brief field measurements were also performed to gather required data on dominant and subdominant substrate size and cover type. Since the accuracy of fish distribution on small scale is very important for habitat modeling, a fish sampling method had to be selected and modified for existing river microhabitats. The brown trout specimen's locations were collected with two (2) different sampling methods. A method of riverbank observation which is suitable for adult fish in pools and a method of electro fishing for locating small fish and fish in riffles or hiding in cover. Ecological and habitat requirements for fish species vary regarding different fish populations as well as eco

  11. A framework for modeling anthropogenic impacts on waterbird habitats: addressing future uncertainty in conservation planning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matchett, Elliott L.; Fleskes, Joseph P.; Young, Charles A.; Purkey, David R.

    2015-01-01

    The amount and quality of natural resources available for terrestrial and aquatic wildlife habitats are expected to decrease throughout the world in areas that are intensively managed for urban and agricultural uses. Changes in climate and management of increasingly limited water supplies may further impact water resources essential for sustaining habitats. In this report, we document adapting a Water Evaluation and Planning (WEAP) system model for the Central Valley of California. We demonstrate using this adapted model (WEAP-CVwh) to evaluate impacts produced from plausible future scenarios on agricultural and wetland habitats used by waterbirds and other wildlife. Processed output from WEAP-CVwh indicated varying levels of impact caused by projected climate, urbanization, and water supply management in scenarios used to exemplify this approach. Among scenarios, the NCAR-CCSM3 A2 climate projection had a greater impact than the CNRM-CM3 B1 climate projection, whereas expansive urbanization had a greater impact than strategic urbanization, on annual availability of waterbird habitat. Scenarios including extensive rice-idling or substantial instream flow requirements on important water supply sources produced large impacts on annual availability of waterbird habitat. In the year corresponding with the greatest habitat reduction for each scenario, the scenario including instream flow requirements resulted in the greatest decrease in habitats throughout all months of the wintering period relative to other scenarios. This approach provides a new and useful tool for habitat conservation planning in the Central Valley and a model to guide similar research investigations aiming to inform conservation, management, and restoration of important wildlife habitats.

  12. Spatial habitat for eel larva at Cimandiri estuary, West Java

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takarina, N. D.; Supriatna

    2017-07-01

    The estuarine ecosystem is known as suitable breeding sites for fishes because this particular habitat is receiving continuous organic matters from river ways and constant sunlight due to its depth that allows sunlight penetration. Cimandiri estuary is one of the estuaries located in the south of Java Island close to the Indian Ocean and known as a suitable habitat for eel larva that routinely collected by local people. Eel habitat has a relationship with the dynamic of space. This dynamic influenced by season, water flow, tide, bathymetry, salinity and dissolved oxygen (DO). The geographic information system is an approach in studying habitat dynamic, through modeling. Furthermore, the spatial model for eel larva habitat is required for land use planning that aimed to achieve sustainable eels larva rearing and conserve estuarine habitat as well. The aim of this research was to investigate dynamics on spatial habitat of eel larva at Cimandiri estuary, West Java.

  13. Agricultural utilisation and potential suitability of the Sysľovské polia Special Protection Area (south-western Slovakia landscape in relation to the habitat requirements of the red-footed falcon (Falco vespertinus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zemko Martin

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Intensification of land use in an agricultural landscape significantly affects biodiversity also in protected areas. This can be observed in the Sysľovské polia Special Protection Area in relation to the occurrence of the red-footed falcon (Falco vespertinus. The objective of this study was to evaluate the landscape structure and suitability of agrotechnical procedures for the habitat demands of this species in the course of the period from 2004 until 2017. The utilisation was assessed on the basis of four landscape elements representation in 1949 and 2017. The next step was analysis of landscape patches. The aim was to quantify the diversity and the spatial structure of the landscape mosaic using Shannon’s Diversity Index and Evenness Index as well as Simpson’s Diversity Index and Evenness Index and spatial pattern analysis in the Fragstats software programme. Assessment of crop suitability was carried out according to the following criteria: representation of positive/negative agricultural crops, diversity of crops in crop rotation, and (non-observance of crop rotation. It was found that the agricultural landscape use did not change significantly. The study area has been used as an intensively-farmed agricultural landscape for a long time. The landscape elements have remained almost identical, with dominance of arable land. Differences emerged in the analysis of the micropatches, which are represented by natural hedgerows consisting of various species of trees, shrubs and grasses. The results show a decrease in the diversity of patches and changes in the structure of the landscape patches, which may be important in terms of the preservation of the habitat of fauna which form an important part of the F vespertinus diet. On the basis of the evaluation of the suitability of agricultural crop growing, we found that there were some areas showing negative values in all the criteria, and thus they require changes in the crop rotation focusing

  14. Measuring and modeling the spatial pattern of understory bamboo across landscapes: Implications for giant panda habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linderman, Marc Alan

    We examined an approach to classifying understory bamboo, the staple food of the giant panda (Ailuropoda melanoleuca), from remote sensing imagery in the Wolong Nature Reserve, China. We also used these data to estimate the landscape-scale distribution of giant panda habitat, and model the human effects on forest cover and the spatio-temporal dynamics of bamboo and the resulting implications for giant panda habitat. The spatial distribution of understory bamboo was mapped using an artificial neural network and leaf-on remote sensing data. Training on a limited set of ground truth data and using widely available Landsat TM data as input, a non-linear artificial neural network achieved a classification accuracy of 80% despite the presence of co-occurring mid-story and understory vegetation. Using information on the spatial distribution of bamboo in Wolong, we compared the results of giant panda habitat analyses with and without bamboo information. Total amount of habitat decreased by 29--56% and overall habitat patch size decreased by 16--48% after bamboo information was incorporated into the analyses. The decreases in the quantity of panda habitat and increases in habitat fragmentation resulted in decreases of 41--60% in carrying capacity. Using a spatio-temporal model of bamboo dynamics and human activities, we found that local fuelwood collection and household creation will likely reduce secondary habitat relied upon by pandas. Human impacts would likely contribute up to an additional 16% loss of habitat. Furthermore, these impacts primarily occur in the habitat relied upon by giant pandas during past bamboo die-offs. Decreased total area of habitat and increased fragmentation from human activities will likely make giant pandas increasingly sensitive to natural disturbances such as cyclical bamboo die-offs. Our studies suggest that it is necessary to further examine approaches to monitor understory vegetation and incorporate understory information into wildlife

  15. The addition of hydrodynamic variables to predictive cold water coral habitat modeling: The Bari Canyon case-study, southwestern Adriatic Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foglini, Federica; Bargain, Annaëlle; Angeletti, Lorenzo; Bonaldo, Davide; Carniel, Sandro; Taviani, Marco

    2017-04-01

    Predictive habitat modeling is gaining momentum because of its usefulness to recognize potential distributional patterns of ecosystems thus facilitating their proper governance when required, as it is for instance the case of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD). This holds particularly true for the deep-sea in front of its overwhelming areal extent on a global scale and intrinsic technological difficulties (with related costs) for its direct exploration. Cold Water Corals (CWC) is one emblematic, virtually cosmopolitan, ecosystem in the deep, that is under international attention because of its multifaceted ecological importance. CWC is currently represented in the Mediterranean basin by habitats engineered by the arborescent scleractinians Madrepora oculata and Lophelia pertusa associated with a number of other benthic invertebrates. One major CWC hotspot located on the southwestern Adriatic margin, the Bari Canyon cold water coral province, has been targeted for producing habitat suitability maps. Initially the evaluation of the theoretical distribution of CWC in this area has been based upon visual observations, mainly extracted from geo-referenced underwater ROV imagery, coupled with the eco-geographic information derived from bathymetry. This approach relies upon the compilation and comparison of presence-only models (MaxEnt and ENFA), but also presence-absence model (GLMs). However, the pivotal role played by oceanographic factors has been soon added in order to achieve more robust predictive models. In fact, the Bari Canyon CWC province is situated on the main path of the North Adriatic Dense Water cascading, and hypothesized to be sensitive to hydrological factors. Accordingly, the statistical models to assess potential habitat extent have been implemented using hydrodynamic fields provided by ROMS for ocean currents, coupled with SWAN within the COAWST modelling system to account for wave-current interactions. The integration of results is

  16. VisTrails SAHM: visualization and workflow management for species habitat modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morisette, Jeffrey T.; Jarnevich, Catherine S.; Holcombe, Tracy R.; Talbert, Colin B.; Ignizio, Drew; Talbert, Marian; Silva, Claudio; Koop, David; Swanson, Alan; Young, Nicholas E.

    2013-01-01

    The Software for Assisted Habitat Modeling (SAHM) has been created to both expedite habitat modeling and help maintain a record of the various input data, pre- and post-processing steps and modeling options incorporated in the construction of a species distribution model through the established workflow management and visualization VisTrails software. This paper provides an overview of the VisTrails:SAHM software including a link to the open source code, a table detailing the current SAHM modules, and a simple example modeling an invasive weed species in Rocky Mountain National Park, USA.

  17. A broadscale fish-habitat model development process: Genesee Basin, New York

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKenna, James E.; McDonald, Richard R.; Castiglione, Chris; Morrison, Sandy S.; Kowalski, Kurt P.; Passino, Dora R. May

    2006-01-01

    We describe a methodology for developing species-habitat models using available fish and stream habitat data from New York State, focusing on the Genesee basin. Electrofishing data from the New York Department of Environmental Conservation were standardized and used for model development and testing. Four types of predictive models (multiple linear regression, stepwise multiple linear regression, linear discriminant analysis, and neural network) were developed and compared for 11 fish species. Predictive models used as many as 25 habitat variables and explained 35-91% of observed species abundance variability. Omission rates were generally low, but commission rates varied widely. Neural network models performed best for all species, except for rainbow trout Oncorhynchus mykiss, gizzard shad Dorosoma cepedianum, and brown trout Salmo trutta. Linear discriminant functions generally performed poorly. The species-environment models we constructed performed well and have potential applications to management issues.

  18. Predicting 21st-century polar bear habitat distribution from global climate models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durner, G.M.; Douglas, D.C.; Nielson, R.M.; Amstrup, Steven C.; McDonald, T.L.; Stirling, I.; Mauritzen, Mette; Born, E.W.; Wiig, O.; Deweaver, E.; Serreze, M.C.; Belikov, Stanislav; Holland, M.M.; Maslanik, J.; Aars, Jon; Bailey, D.A.; Derocher, A.E.

    2009-01-01

    Projections of polar bear (Ursus maritimus) sea ice habitat distribution in the polar basin during the 21st century were developed to understand the consequences of anticipated sea ice reductions on polar bear populations. We used location data from satellitecollared polar bears and environmental data (e.g., bathymetry, distance to coastlines, and sea ice) collected from 1985 to 1995 to build resource selection functions (RSFs). RSFs described habitats that polar bears preferred in summer, autumn, winter, and spring. When applied to independent data from 1996 to 2006, the RSFs consistently identified habitats most frequently used by polar bears. We applied the RSFs to monthly maps of 21st-century sea ice concentration projected by 10 general circulation models (GCMs) used in the Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change Fourth Assessment Report, under the A1B greenhouse gas forcing scenario. Despite variation in their projections, all GCMs indicated habitat losses in the polar basin during the 21st century. Losses in the highest-valued RSF habitat (optimal habitat) were greatest in the southern seas of the polar basin, especially the Chukchi and Barents seas, and least along the Arctic Ocean shores of Banks Island to northern Greenland. Mean loss of optimal polar bear habitat was greatest during summer; from an observed 1.0 million km2 in 1985-1995 (baseline) to a projected multi-model mean of 0.32 million km2 in 2090-2099 (-68% change). Projected winter losses of polar bear habitat were less: from 1.7 million km2 in 1985-1995 to 1.4 million km2 in 2090-2099 (-17% change). Habitat losses based on GCM multi-model means may be conservative; simulated rates of habitat loss during 1985-2006 from many GCMs were less than the actual observed rates of loss. Although a reduction in the total amount of optimal habitat will likely reduce polar bear populations, exact relationships between habitat losses and population demographics remain unknown. Density and energetic

  19. The characterization of obese polycystic ovary syndrome rat model suitable for exercise intervention.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chuyan Wu

    Full Text Available To develop a new polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS rat model suitable for exercise intervention.Thirty six rats were randomly divided into three experimental groups: PCOS rats with high-fat diet (PF, n = 24, PCOS rats with ordinary diet (PO, n = 6, and control rats with ordinary diet (CO, n = 6. Two kinds of PCOS rat model were made by adjustment diet structure and testosterone injection for 28 days. After a successful animal model, PF model rats were randomly assigned to three groups: exercise with a continuation of high-fat diet (PF-EF, n = 6, sedentary with a continuation of high-fat diet (PF-SF, n = 6, exercise with an ordinary diet (PF-EO, n = 6. Fasting blood glucose (FBG and insulin (FINS, estrogen (E2, progesterone (P, and testosterone (T in serum were determined by RIA, and ovarian morphology was evaluated by Image-Pro plus 6.0.Body weight, Lee index, FINS increased significantly in PF rat model. Serum levels of E2 and T were significantly higher in PF and PO than in CO. Ovary organ index and ovarian areas were significant lower in PF than in CO. After intervention for 2 weeks, the levels of 1 h postprandial blood glucose (PBG1, 2 h postprandial blood glucose (PBG2, FINS and the serum levels of T decreased significantly in PF-EF rats and PF-EO rats. The ratio of FBG/FINS was significant higher in PF-EO rats than in PF-SF rats. Ovarian morphology showed that the numbers of preantral follicles and atretic follicles decreased significantly, and the numbers of antral follicles and corpora lutea increased significantly in the rats of PF-EF and PF-EO.By combination of high-fat diet and testosterone injection, the obese PCOS rat model is conformable with the lifestyle habits of fatty foods and insufficient exercise, and has metabolic and reproductive characteristics of human PCOS. This model can be applied to study exercise intervention.

  20. GIS-based weight of evidence modeling for cultivated land suitability mapping

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lv, Li-na; Zheng, Xinqi

    The cultivated land protection has become a leading concern influencing the actions of the Chinese government and people. This study introduces a method named as the weight of evidence (WOE) using natural and geographical location factors to evaluate the suitability of Jinan cultivated land. Evaluation results show that: (1) weight of evidence method as a pure data-driven approach is suitable for confirming each index's weight in the cultivated land suitability evaluation, and the weights are objective and easy to be explained; (2) weight of evidence method uses raster data which are convenient for spatial analysis and does not need to unify the evaluation unit; (3)About 60.25% of land in Jinan has superior suitability as cultivated land. The technical ideas and methods proposed in this paper can provide support for taking a fresh look at land suitability evaluation and policy making. It will also help decision-makers optimize land allocation and make better land-use planning decisions.

  1. Modeling of Habitat and Foraging Behavior of Beaked Whales in the Southern California Bight

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-09-30

    1 DISTRIBUTION STATEMENT A. Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited. FINAL REPORT Modeling of Habitat and Foraging Behavior of...whale distribution and foraging behavior and to describe inter-specific differences. We investigated spatio-temporal patterns for Cuvier’s beaked whale...distribution and foraging behavior and to describe inter-specific differences. Knowledge about foraging behavior and habitat preference and

  2. Forecasting tidal marsh elevation and habitat change through fusion of Earth observations and a process model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Byrd, Kristin B.; Windham-Myers, Lisamarie; Leeuw, Thomas; Downing, Bryan D.; Morris, James T.; Ferner, Matthew C.

    2016-01-01

    Reducing uncertainty in data inputs at relevant spatial scales can improve tidal marsh forecasting models, and their usefulness in coastal climate change adaptation decisions. The Marsh Equilibrium Model (MEM), a one-dimensional mechanistic elevation model, incorporates feedbacks of organic and inorganic inputs to project elevations under sea-level rise scenarios. We tested the feasibility of deriving two key MEM inputs—average annual suspended sediment concentration (SSC) and aboveground peak biomass—from remote sensing data in order to apply MEM across a broader geographic region. We analyzed the precision and representativeness (spatial distribution) of these remote sensing inputs to improve understanding of our study region, a brackish tidal marsh in San Francisco Bay, and to test the applicable spatial extent for coastal modeling. We compared biomass and SSC models derived from Landsat 8, DigitalGlobe WorldView-2, and hyperspectral airborne imagery. Landsat 8-derived inputs were evaluated in a MEM sensitivity analysis. Biomass models were comparable although peak biomass from Landsat 8 best matched field-measured values. The Portable Remote Imaging Spectrometer SSC model was most accurate, although a Landsat 8 time series provided annual average SSC estimates. Landsat 8-measured peak biomass values were randomly distributed, and annual average SSC (30 mg/L) was well represented in the main channels (IQR: 29–32 mg/L), illustrating the suitability of these inputs across the model domain. Trend response surface analysis identified significant diversion between field and remote sensing-based model runs at 60 yr due to model sensitivity at the marsh edge (80–140 cm NAVD88), although at 100 yr, elevation forecasts differed less than 10 cm across 97% of the marsh surface (150–200 cm NAVD88). Results demonstrate the utility of Landsat 8 for landscape-scale tidal marsh elevation projections due to its comparable performance with the other sensors

  3. Habitat models to assist plant protection efforts in Shenandoah National Park, Virginia, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Manen, F.T.; Young, J.A.; Thatcher, C.A.; Cass, W.B.; Ulrey, C.

    2005-01-01

    During 2002, the National Park Service initiated a demonstration project to develop science-based law enforcement strategies for the protection of at-risk natural resources, including American ginseng (Panax quinquefolius L.), bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis L.), and black cohosh (Cimicifuga racemosa (L.) Nutt. [syn. Actaea racemosa L.]). Harvest pressure on these species is increasing because of the growing herbal remedy market. We developed habitat models for Shenandoah National Park and the northern portion of the Blue Ridge Parkway to determine the distribution of favorable habitats of these three plant species and to demonstrate the use of that information to support plant protection activities. We compiled locations for the three plant species to delineate favorable habitats with a geographic information system (GIS). We mapped potential habitat quality for each species by calculating a multivariate statistic, Mahalanobis distance, based on GIS layers that characterized the topography, land cover, and geology of the plant locations (10-m resolution). We tested model performance with an independent dataset of plant locations, which indicated a significant relationship between Mahalanobis distance values and species occurrence. We also generated null models by examining the distribution of the Mahalanobis distance values had plants been distributed randomly. For all species, the habitat models performed markedly better than their respective null models. We used our models to direct field searches to the most favorable habitats, resulting in a sizeable number of new plant locations (82 ginseng, 73 bloodroot, and 139 black cohosh locations). The odds of finding new plant locations based on the habitat models were 4.5 (black cohosh) to 12.3 (American ginseng) times greater than random searches; thus, the habitat models can be used to improve the efficiency of plant protection efforts, (e.g., marking of plants, law enforcement activities). The field searches also

  4. Which model based on fluorescence quenching is suitable to study the interaction between trans-resveratrol and BSA?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei, Xin Lin; Xiao, Jian Bo; Wang, Yuanfeng; Bai, Yalong

    2010-01-01

    There are several models by means of quenching fluorescence of BSA to determine the binding parameters. The binding parameters obtained from different models are quite different from each other. Which model is suitable to study the interaction between trans-resveratrol and BSA? Herein, twelve models based fluorescence quenching of BSA were compared. The number of binding sites increasing with increased binding constant for similar compounds binding to BSA maybe one approach to resolve this question. For example, here eleven flavonoids were tested to illustrate that the double logarithm regression curve is suitable to study binding polyphenols to BSA.

  5. Is the climate right for pleistocene rewilding? Using species distribution models to extrapolate climatic suitability for mammals across continents.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Orien M W Richmond

    Full Text Available Species distribution models (SDMs are increasingly used for extrapolation, or predicting suitable regions for species under new geographic or temporal scenarios. However, SDM predictions may be prone to errors if species are not at equilibrium with climatic conditions in the current range and if training samples are not representative. Here the controversial "Pleistocene rewilding" proposal was used as a novel example to address some of the challenges of extrapolating modeled species-climate relationships outside of current ranges. Climatic suitability for three proposed proxy species (Asian elephant, African cheetah and African lion was extrapolated to the American southwest and Great Plains using Maxent, a machine-learning species distribution model. Similar models were fit for Oryx gazella, a species native to Africa that has naturalized in North America, to test model predictions. To overcome biases introduced by contracted modern ranges and limited occurrence data, random pseudo-presence points generated from modern and historical ranges were used for model training. For all species except the oryx, models of climatic suitability fit to training data from historical ranges produced larger areas of predicted suitability in North America than models fit to training data from modern ranges. Four naturalized oryx populations in the American southwest were correctly predicted with a generous model threshold, but none of these locations were predicted with a more stringent threshold. In general, the northern Great Plains had low climatic suitability for all focal species and scenarios considered, while portions of the southern Great Plains and American southwest had low to intermediate suitability for some species in some scenarios. The results suggest that the use of historical, in addition to modern, range information and randomly sampled pseudo-presence points may improve model accuracy. This has implications for modeling range shifts of

  6. Modeling Habitat Associations for the Common Loon (Gavia immer at Multiple Scales in Northeastern North America

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anne Kuhn

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Common Loon (Gavia immer is considered an emblematic and ecologically important example of aquatic-dependent wildlife in North America. The northern breeding range of Common Loon has contracted over the last century as a result of habitat degradation from human disturbance and lakeshore development. We focused on the state of New Hampshire, USA, where a long-term monitoring program conducted by the Loon Preservation Committee has been collecting biological data on Common Loon since 1976. The Common Loon population in New Hampshire is distributed throughout the state across a wide range of lake-specific habitats, water quality conditions, and levels of human disturbance. We used a multiscale approach to evaluate the association of Common Loon and breeding habitat within three natural physiographic ecoregions of New Hampshire. These multiple scales reflect Common Loon-specific extents such as territories, home ranges, and lake-landscape influences. We developed ecoregional multiscale models and compared them to single-scale models to evaluate model performance in distinguishing Common Loon breeding habitat. Based on information-theoretic criteria, there is empirical support for both multiscale and single-scale models across all three ecoregions, warranting a model-averaging approach. Our results suggest that the Common Loon responds to both ecological and anthropogenic factors at multiple scales when selecting breeding sites. These multiscale models can be used to identify and prioritize the conservation of preferred nesting habitat for Common Loon populations.

  7. Modelling population effects of juvenile offshore fish displacement towards adult habitat

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    van de Wolfshaar, K.E.; Tulp, I.; Wennhage, H.

    2015-01-01

    Recent studies of fish distribution patterns highlight shifts in the spatial distributions of particular life-stages. Focus has thus far been on changes in habitat use and possible drivers for these changes. Yet, small-scale shifts in habitat use of certain life stages may have profound...... consequences on population dynamics through changes in resource use and competition. To explore this, a conceptual stage-structured model was developed with 3 stages and 2 resources and allowing a move of large juveniles from the shallow to the deep habitat. Large juveniles compete with small juveniles...... environment requires monitoring of juvenile life-stages in a range of habitats and a spatially adaptive management strategy...

  8. Modelling the future spread of native and alien congeneric species in subterranean habitats — the case of Meta cave-dwelling spiders in Great Britain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefano Mammola

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available The threshold zones between the epigean and hypogean environments are generally characterized by less harsh ecological conditions than deep subterranean habitats, and usually support a greater abundance of organisms. Transitional habitats such as these should be more easily colonised by alien species, especially by those possessing exaptations suitable for subterranean life. In spite of this, few studies have been conducted to unravel the ecological dynamics between native and alien species in the habitats situated at the epigean/hypogean interface. A unique test case is offered by cave-dwelling Meta orb-weaver spiders in Great Britain (Araneae: Tetragnathidae. One species, M. menardi, is a widespread native, whilst M. bourneti is believed to be a recently introduced (1940s species, that has since become established in the south-eastern part of the country. Species distribution models (SDM were used to predict current and future habitat suitability for the two species, generating hypotheses regarding their distribution in different global warming scenarios. Model projections indicate that the two species respond to similar environmental variables. Seasonal temperature variations at the surface and elevation are the main factors explaining the distribution of both species, whereas annual precipitation, daily temperature range and limestone distribution contributed little to the model performance. It is predicted that due to climate change, there will be poleward shifts in the ranges of both species. However, the native species M. menardi will primarily be able to exploit suitable areas which will appear northward to their current distribution, and M. bourneti will colonise empty niches left available by its congeneric. The analytical framework employed in this paper may be easily adapted to other subterranean systems and species, stimulating future studies focusing on the distribution of native and alien species in extreme environments.

  9. Shellsim: A Generic Model of Growth and Environmental Effects Validated Across Contrasting Habitats in Bivalve Shellfish

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hawkins, A.; Pascoe, P.L.; Parry, H.; Brinsley, M.; Black, K.; McGonigle, C.; Smaal, A.C.

    2013-01-01

    Previous shellfish models have, in general, been calibrated for 1 location, unable to simulate growth across habitats that contrast in seston abundance and composition, as may vary between turbid, eutrophic and oligotrophic waters. Here, we describe the generic shellfish model ShellSIM,

  10. Predictive Species and Habitat Modeling in Landscape Ecology: Concepts and Applications

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Drew, C. Ashton; Huettmann, Falk; Wiersma, Yolanda F

    2011-01-01

    ... is an excellent example of scholarship under the leadership of some outstanding young landscape ecologists. Focusing on species distribution and habitat modeling, it contributes to landscape ecology theories, methods, and applications in many ways. The book integrates fundamental ecological theories into the model development p...

  11. Identification of landscape features influencing gene flow: How useful are habitat selection models?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gretchen H. Roffler; Michael K. Schwartz; Kristine Pilgrim; Sandra L. Talbot; George K. Sage; Layne G. Adams; Gordon Luikart

    2016-01-01

    Understanding how dispersal patterns are influenced by landscape heterogeneity is critical for modeling species connectivity. Resource selection function (RSF) models are increasingly used in landscape genetics approaches. However, because the ecological factors that drive habitat selection may be different from those influencing dispersal and gene flow, it is...

  12. Deep-sea benthic habitats modeling and mapping in a NE Atlantic seamount (Galicia Bank)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Serrano, A.; González-Irusta, J. M.; Punzón, A.; García-Alegre, A.; Lourido, A.; Ríos, P.; Blanco, M.; Gómez-Ballesteros, M.; Druet, M.; Cristobo, J.; Cartes, J. E.

    2017-08-01

    This study presents the results of seafloor habitat identification and mapping of a NE Atlantic deep seamount. An ;assemble first, predict later; approach has been followed to identify and map the benthic habitats of the Galicia Bank (NW Iberian). Biotic patterns inferred from the survey data have been used to drive the definition of benthic assemblages using multivariate tools. Eight assemblages, four hard substrates and four sedimentary ones, have been described from a matrix of structural species. Distribution of these assemblages was correlated with environmental factors (multibeam and backscatter data) using binomial GAMs. Finally, the distribution model of each assemblage was applied to produce continuous maps and pooled in a final map with the distribution of the main benthic habitats. Depth and substrate type are key factors when determining soft bottom communities, whereas rocky habitat distribution is mainly explained by rock slope and orientation. Enrichment by northern water masses (LSW) arriving to GB and possible zooplankton biomass increase at vertical-steep walls by ;bottom trapping; can explain the higher diversity of habitat providing filter-feeders at slope rocky breaks. These results concerning vulnerable species and habitats, such as Lophelia and Madrepora communities and black and bamboo coral aggregations were the basis of the Spanish proposal of inclusion within the Natura 2000 network. The aim of the present study was to establish the scientific criteria needed for managing and protecting those environmental values.

  13. Lowland tapir distribution and habitat loss in South America

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jose Luis Passos Cordeiro

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The development of species distribution models (SDMs can help conservation efforts by generating potential distributions and identifying areas of high environmental suitability for protection. Our study presents a distribution and habitat map for lowland tapir in South America. We also describe the potential habitat suitability of various geographical regions and habitat loss, inside and outside of protected areas network. Two different SDM approaches, MAXENT and ENFA, produced relative different Habitat Suitability Maps for the lowland tapir. While MAXENT was efficient at identifying areas as suitable or unsuitable, it was less efficient (when compared to the results by ENFA at identifying the gradient of habitat suitability. MAXENT is a more multifaceted technique that establishes more complex relationships between dependent and independent variables. Our results demonstrate that for at least one species, the lowland tapir, the use of a simple consensual approach (average of ENFA and MAXENT models outputs better reflected its current distribution patterns. The Brazilian ecoregions have the highest habitat loss for the tapir. Cerrado and Atlantic Forest account for nearly half (48.19% of the total area lost. The Amazon region contains the largest area under protection, and the most extensive remaining habitat for the tapir, but also showed high levels of habitat loss outside protected areas, which increases the importance of support for proper management.

  14. Habitat models to predict wetland bird occupancy influenced by scale, anthropogenic disturbance, and imperfect detection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glisson, Wesley J.; Conway, Courtney J.; Nadeau, Christopher P.; Borgmann, Kathi L.

    2017-01-01

    Understanding species–habitat relationships for endangered species is critical for their conservation. However, many studies have limited value for conservation because they fail to account for habitat associations at multiple spatial scales, anthropogenic variables, and imperfect detection. We addressed these three limitations by developing models for an endangered wetland bird, Yuma Ridgway's rail (Rallus obsoletus yumanensis), that examined how the spatial scale of environmental variables, inclusion of anthropogenic disturbance variables, and accounting for imperfect detection in validation data influenced model performance. These models identified associations between environmental variables and occupancy. We used bird survey and spatial environmental data at 2473 locations throughout the species' U.S. range to create and validate occupancy models and produce predictive maps of occupancy. We compared habitat-based models at three spatial scales (100, 224, and 500 m radii buffers) with and without anthropogenic disturbance variables using validation data adjusted for imperfect detection and an unadjusted validation dataset that ignored imperfect detection. The inclusion of anthropogenic disturbance variables improved the performance of habitat models at all three spatial scales, and the 224-m-scale model performed best. All models exhibited greater predictive ability when imperfect detection was incorporated into validation data. Yuma Ridgway's rail occupancy was negatively associated with ephemeral and slow-moving riverine features and high-intensity anthropogenic development, and positively associated with emergent vegetation, agriculture, and low-intensity development. Our modeling approach accounts for common limitations in modeling species–habitat relationships and creating predictive maps of occupancy probability and, therefore, provides a useful framework for other species.

  15. Modeling the impact of a hydropower reservoir on the habitat of a megaherbivore in the Black Volta Basin in Ghana, West Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manful, Desmond

    2010-05-01

    The Black Volta watershed is approximately 134 000 km2 in size at the gauge at Bamboi. It is part of the main 414 000 km2 Volta system. The Volta river was dammed at Akosombo in 1965 resulting in the largest man-made lake in the world, the Volta Lake. The Bui dam is a new 400 MW scheme currently under development on the Black Volta River in the Bui national park in Ghana. The reservoir created by the Bui barrage is expected to impact (through inundation) the habitat of two species of hippos know to exist in the park, the Hippopotamus amphibius and the Choeropsis liberiensis. Computer-based models present a unique opportunity to assess quantitatively the impact of the new reservoir on the habitat of the target species in this case the H. amphibious. Until this undertaking, there were very few studies documenting the habitat of the H. amphibious let alone model it. The work and subsequent presentation will show the development of a habitat model for the Hippopotamus amphibius. The Habitat Information retrieval Program based on Streamflow Analysis, in short HIPStrA, is a one dimensional (1D) in-stream, spatially explicit hybrid construct that combines physico-chemical evidence and expert knowledge to forecast river habitat suitability (Hs) for the Hippopotamus amphibius. The version of the model presented is specifically developed to assess the impact of a reservoir created by a hydroelectric dam on potential dwelling areas in the Bui gorge for hippos. Accordingly, this version of HIPStrA simulates a special reservoir suitability index (Rsi), a metric that captures the "hippo friendliness" of any lake or reservoir. The impact of measured and simulated flood events as well as low flows, representing extreme events is also assessed. Recommendations are made for the operating rules of the reservoir in the post-construction phase of the dam. A great deal of work has been done on the effects of stream flow changes on fish especially salmonids. Very little work however has

  16. Wintering habitat model for the North Atlantic Right Whale (Eubalaena glacialis) in the southeastern United States.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gowan, Timothy A; Ortega-Ortiz, Joel G

    2014-01-01

    The coastal waters off the southeastern United States (SEUS) are a primary wintering ground for the endangered North Atlantic right whale (Eubalaena glacialis), used by calving females along with other adult and juvenile whales. Management actions implemented in this area for the recovery of the right whale population rely on accurate habitat characterization and the ability to predict whale distribution over time. We developed a temporally dynamic habitat model to predict wintering right whale distribution in the SEUS using a generalized additive model framework and aerial survey data from 2003/2004 through 2012/2013. We built upon previous habitat models for right whales in the SEUS and include data from new aerial surveys that extend the spatial coverage of the analysis, particularly in the northern portion of this wintering ground. We summarized whale sightings, survey effort corrected for probability of whale detection, and environmental data at a semimonthly resolution. Consistent with previous studies, sea surface temperature (SST), water depth, and survey year were significant predictors of right whale relative abundance. Additionally, distance to shore, distance to the 22°C SST isotherm, and an interaction between time of year and latitude (to account for the latitudinal migration of whales) were also selected in the analysis presented here. Predictions from the model revealed that the location of preferred habitat differs within and between years in correspondence with variation in environmental conditions. Although cow-calf pairs were rarely sighted in the company of other whales, there was minimal evidence that the preferred habitat of cow-calf pairs was different than that of whale groups without calves at the scale of this study. The results of this updated habitat model can be used to inform management decisions for a migratory species in a dynamic oceanic environment.

  17. Modelling of Moving Coil Actuators in Fast Switching Valves Suitable for Digital Hydraulic Machines

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nørgård, Christian; Roemer, Daniel Beck; Bech, Michael Møller

    2015-01-01

    The efficiency of digital hydraulic machines is strongly dependent on the valve switching time. Recently, fast switching have been achieved by using a direct electromagnetic moving coil actuator as the force producing element in fast switching hydraulic valves suitable for digital hydraulic...

  18. A method for assigning species into groups based on generalized Mahalanobis distance between habitat model coefficients

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, C.J.; Heglund, P.J.

    2009-01-01

    Habitat association models are commonly developed for individual animal species using generalized linear modeling methods such as logistic regression. We considered the issue of grouping species based on their habitat use so that management decisions can be based on sets of species rather than individual species. This research was motivated by a study of western landbirds in northern Idaho forests. The method we examined was to separately fit models to each species and to use a generalized Mahalanobis distance between coefficient vectors to create a distance matrix among species. Clustering methods were used to group species from the distance matrix, and multidimensional scaling methods were used to visualize the relations among species groups. Methods were also discussed for evaluating the sensitivity of the conclusions because of outliers or influential data points. We illustrate these methods with data from the landbird study conducted in northern Idaho. Simulation results are presented to compare the success of this method to alternative methods using Euclidean distance between coefficient vectors and to methods that do not use habitat association models. These simulations demonstrate that our Mahalanobis-distance- based method was nearly always better than Euclidean-distance-based methods or methods not based on habitat association models. The methods used to develop candidate species groups are easily explained to other scientists and resource managers since they mainly rely on classical multivariate statistical methods. ?? 2008 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.

  19. Virtual Construction of Space Habitats: Connecting Building Information Models (BIM) and SysML

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polit-Casillas, Raul; Howe, A. Scott

    2013-01-01

    Current trends in design, construction and management of complex projects make use of Building Information Models (BIM) connecting different types of data to geometrical models. This information model allow different types of analysis beyond pure graphical representations. Space habitats, regardless their size, are also complex systems that require the synchronization of many types of information and disciplines beyond mass, volume, power or other basic volumetric parameters. For this, the state-of-the-art model based systems engineering languages and processes - for instance SysML - represent a solid way to tackle this problem from a programmatic point of view. Nevertheless integrating this with a powerful geometrical architectural design tool with BIM capabilities could represent a change in the workflow and paradigm of space habitats design applicable to other aerospace complex systems. This paper shows some general findings and overall conclusions based on the ongoing research to create a design protocol and method that practically connects a systems engineering approach with a BIM architectural and engineering design as a complete Model Based Engineering approach. Therefore, one hypothetical example is created and followed during the design process. In order to make it possible this research also tackles the application of IFC categories and parameters in the aerospace field starting with the application upon the space habitats design as way to understand the information flow between disciplines and tools. By building virtual space habitats we can potentially improve in the near future the way more complex designs are developed from very little detail from concept to manufacturing.

  20. A predictive model of suitability for minimally invasive parathyroid surgery in the treatment of primary hyperparathyroidism [corrected].

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Kavanagh, Dara O

    2012-05-01

    Improved preoperative localizing studies have facilitated minimally invasive approaches in the treatment of primary hyperparathyroidism (PHPT). Success depends on the ability to reliably select patients who have PHPT due to single-gland disease. We propose a model encompassing preoperative clinical, biochemical, and imaging studies to predict a patient\\'s suitability for minimally invasive surgery.

  1. Global patterns of fragmentation and connectivity of mammalian carnivore habitat

    OpenAIRE

    Crooks, Kevin R.; Burdett, Christopher L.; Theobald, David M.; Rondinini, Carlo; Boitani, Luigi

    2011-01-01

    Although mammalian carnivores are vulnerable to habitat fragmentation and require landscape connectivity, their global patterns of fragmentation and connectivity have not been examined. We use recently developed high-resolution habitat suitability models to conduct comparative analyses and to identify global hotspots of fragmentation and connectivity for the world's terrestrial carnivores. Species with less fragmentation (i.e. more interior high-quality habitat) had larger geographical ranges...

  2. [Study on ecological suitability of Gardenia jasminoides based on ArcGIS and Maxent model].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miao, Qi; Yuan, Yuan-Jian; Luo, Guang-Ming; Wei, Chun-Hua; Rao, Ya-Qi; Gong, Yu-Hong; Zhang, Lan; Shao, Jian; Dong, Yan-Kai

    2016-09-01

    The application of ArcGIS and Maxent modelto analyze the ecological suitability of Gardenia jasminoides.Taking 85 batches of Gardenia as the basis of analysis, the selection of ecological factors for the growth of Gardenia. The results showed that the average precipitation in April, the average precipitation in November and the average precipitation in August were the most important factors affecting the growth of Gardenia. The relative concentration of Gardenia suitable growth region,north to the south of Shaanxi province, south of Henan, central Anhui, south to the north of Hainan province, west to central Sichuan province, east of Zhejiang coastal area, northeast of Taiwan. Copyright© by the Chinese Pharmaceutical Association.

  3. Hydrological Modelling of Small Scale Processes in a Wetland Habitat

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Johansen, Ole; Jensen, Jacob Birk; Pedersen, Morten Lauge

    2009-01-01

    Numerical modelling of the hydrology in a Danish rich fen area has been conducted. By collecting various data in the field the model has been successfully calibrated and the flow paths as well as the groundwater discharge distribution have been simulated in details. The results of this work have ...

  4. Pataha Creek Model Watershed : 1998 Habitat Conservation Projects.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bartels, Duane G.

    1999-12-01

    The projects outlined in detail on the attached project reports are a few of the many projects implemented in the Pataha Creek Model Watershed since it was selected as a model in 1993. 1998 was a year where a focused effort was made to work on the upland conservation practices to reduce the sedimentation into Pataha Creek.

  5. Evaluation of New Zealand's high-seas bottom trawl closures using predictive habitat models and quantitative risk assessment.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew J Penney

    Full Text Available United Nations General Assembly Resolution 61/105 on sustainable fisheries (UNGA 2007 establishes three difficult questions for participants in high-seas bottom fisheries to answer: 1 Where are vulnerable marine systems (VMEs likely to occur?; 2 What is the likelihood of fisheries interaction with these VMEs?; and 3 What might qualify as adequate conservation and management measures to prevent significant adverse impacts? This paper develops an approach to answering these questions for bottom trawling activities in the Convention Area of the South Pacific Regional Fisheries Management Organisation (SPRFMO within a quantitative risk assessment and cost : benefit analysis framework. The predicted distribution of deep-sea corals from habitat suitability models is used to answer the first question. Distribution of historical bottom trawl effort is used to answer the second, with estimates of seabed areas swept by bottom trawlers being used to develop discounting factors for reduced biodiversity in previously fished areas. These are used in a quantitative ecological risk assessment approach to guide spatial protection planning to address the third question. The coral VME likelihood (average, discounted, predicted coral habitat suitability of existing spatial closures implemented by New Zealand within the SPRFMO area is evaluated. Historical catch is used as a measure of cost to industry in a cost : benefit analysis of alternative spatial closure scenarios. Results indicate that current closures within the New Zealand SPRFMO area bottom trawl footprint are suboptimal for protection of VMEs. Examples of alternative trawl closure scenarios are provided to illustrate how the approach could be used to optimise protection of VMEs under chosen management objectives, balancing protection of VMEs against economic loss to commercial fishers from closure of historically fished areas.

  6. Spatially explicit habitat models for 28 fishes from the Upper Mississippi River System (AHAG 2.0)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ickes, Brian S.; Sauer, J.S.; Richards, N.; Bowler, M.; Schlifer, B.

    2014-01-01

    Environmental management actions in the Upper Mississippi River System (UMRS) typically require pre-project assessments of predicted benefits under a range of project scenarios. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) now requires certified and peer-reviewed models to conduct these assessments. Previously, habitat benefits were estimated for fish communities in the UMRS using the Aquatic Habitat Appraisal Guide (AHAG v.1.0; AHAG from hereon). This spreadsheet-based model used a habitat suitability index (HSI) approach that drew heavily upon Habitat Evaluation Procedures (HEP; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 1980) by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS). The HSI approach requires developing species response curves for different environmental variables that seek to broadly represent habitat. The AHAG model uses species-specific response curves assembled from literature values, data from other ecosystems, or best professional judgment. A recent scientific review of the AHAG indicated that the model’s effectiveness is reduced by its dated approach to large river ecosystems, uncertainty regarding its data inputs and rationale for habitat-species response relationships, and lack of field validation (Abt Associates Inc., 2011). The reviewers made two major recommendations: (1) incorporate empirical data from the UMRS into defining the empirical response curves, and (2) conduct post-project biological evaluations to test pre-project benefits estimated by AHAG. Our objective was to address the first recommendation and generate updated response curves for AHAG using data from the Upper Mississippi River Restoration-Environmental Management Program (UMRR-EMP) Long Term Resource Monitoring Program (LTRMP) element. Fish community data have been collected by LTRMP (Gutreuter and others, 1995; Ratcliff and others, in press) for 20 years from 6 study reaches representing 1,930 kilometers of river and >140 species of fish. We modeled a subset of these data (28 different

  7. Using maximum entropy modeling to identify and prioritize red spruce forest habitat in West Virginia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nathan R. Beane; James S. Rentch; Thomas M. Schuler

    2013-01-01

    Red spruce forests in West Virginia are found in island-like distributions at high elevations and provide essential habitat for the endangered Cheat Mountain salamander and the recently delisted Virginia northern flying squirrel. Therefore, it is important to identify restoration priorities of red spruce forests. Maximum entropy modeling was used to identify areas of...

  8. Population consequences of winter habitat loss in a migratory shorebird. I. Estimating model parameters

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    GOSSCUSTARD, JD; CLARKE, RT; BRIGGS, KB; Ens, B.J.; EXO, KM; SMIT, C; BEINTEMA, AJ; CALDOW, RWG; CATT, DC; CLARK, NA; DURELL, SEALD; HARRIS, MP; HULSCHER, JB; MEININGER, PL; PICOZZI, N; PRYSJONES, R; SAFRIEL, UN; WEST, AD

    1. In order to construct a model to predict the effect of winter habitat loss on the migratory population of the European subspecies of the oystercatcher, Haematopus ostralegus ostralegus, data on the reproductive and mortality rates collected throughout Europe over the last 60 years are reviewed.

  9. Modeling larval malaria vector habitat locations using landscape features and cumulative precipitation measures

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mc Cann, R.S.; Messina, J.P.; MacFarlane, D.W.; Bayoh, M.N.; Vulule, J.M.; Gimnig, J.E.; Walker, E.D.

    2014-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Predictive models of malaria vector larval habitat locations may provide a basis for understanding the spatial determinants of malaria transmission. METHODS: We used four landscape variables (topographic wetness index [TWI], soil type, land use-land cover, and distance to stream) and

  10. Using satellite and airborne LiDAR to model woodpecker habitat occupancy at the landscape scale

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee A. Vierling; Kerri T. Vierling; Patrick Adam; Andrew T. Hudak

    2013-01-01

    Incorporating vertical vegetation structure into models of animal distributions can improve understanding of the patterns and processes governing habitat selection. LiDAR can provide such structural information, but these data are typically collected via aircraft and thus are limited in spatial extent. Our objective was to explore the utility of satellite-based LiDAR...

  11. Spatial multi-criteria decision analysis for modelling suitable habitats of Ornithodoros soft ticks in the Western Palearctic region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ticks are economically and medically important due to the injuries inflicted through their bite, and their ability to transmit pathogens to humans, livestock, and wildlife. Whereas hard ticks have been intensively studied, little is known about soft ticks, even though they can transmit several patho...

  12. Western Monarch and Milkweed Habitat Suitability Modeling Project- Environmental Covariate Rasters for the Western U.S.

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — Each set of these three sets of rasters cover the Western 11 conterminous U.S. states. They share the same extent, cell size, and projection so that they can easily...

  13. An Iterative and Targeted Sampling Design Informed by Habitat Suitability Models for Detecting Focal Plant Species over Extensive Areas

    OpenAIRE

    Wang, Ophelia; Zachmann, Luke J.; Sesnie, Steven E.; Olsson, Aaryn D.; Dickson, Brett G.

    2014-01-01

    Prioritizing areas for management of non-native invasive plants is critical, as invasive plants can negatively impact plant community structure. Extensive and multi-jurisdictional inventories are essential to prioritize actions aimed at mitigating the impact of invasions and changes in disturbance regimes. However, previous work devoted little effort to devising sampling methods sufficient to assess the scope of multi-jurisdictional invasion over extensive areas. Here we describe a large-scal...

  14. Using a data-constrained model of home range establishment to predict abundance in spatially heterogeneous habitats.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark C Vanderwel

    Full Text Available Mechanistic modelling approaches that explicitly translate from individual-scale resource selection to the distribution and abundance of a larger population may be better suited to predicting responses to spatially heterogeneous habitat alteration than commonly-used regression models. We developed an individual-based model of home range establishment that, given a mapped distribution of local habitat values, estimates species abundance by simulating the number and position of viable home ranges that can be maintained across a spatially heterogeneous area. We estimated parameters for this model from data on red-backed vole (Myodes gapperi abundances in 31 boreal forest sites in Ontario, Canada. The home range model had considerably more support from these data than both non-spatial regression models based on the same original habitat variables and a mean-abundance null model. It had nearly equivalent support to a non-spatial regression model that, like the home range model, scaled an aggregate measure of habitat value from local associations with habitat resources. The home range and habitat-value regression models gave similar predictions for vole abundance under simulations of light- and moderate-intensity partial forest harvesting, but the home range model predicted lower abundances than the regression model under high-intensity disturbance. Empirical regression-based approaches for predicting species abundance may overlook processes that affect habitat use by individuals, and often extrapolate poorly to novel habitat conditions. Mechanistic home range models that can be parameterized against abundance data from different habitats permit appropriate scaling from individual- to population-level habitat relationships, and can potentially provide better insights into responses to disturbance.

  15. Habitat hydraulic modeling for assessing changes of mesohabitat types in a Greek mountainous river

    Science.gov (United States)

    Papadaki, Christina; Mentzafou, Aggeliki; Ntoanidis, Lazaros; Zogaris, Stamatis; Evelpidou, Niki; Argyropoulos, Demetris; Dimitriou, Elias

    2014-05-01

    The aim of this study is to describe and assess changes in physical attributes of mesohabitat types in response to different flows in a Greek mountainous river. Hydraulic simulations were applied using two one-dimensional hydraulic models, MIKE 11 and HEC-RAS. The differences between the two models were analyzed by comparing their outputs against in situ measurements. A 200 m reach in Acheloos river was chosen as study site (Mesochora upstream) mainly because it is located in relatively undisturbed conditions (near reference conditions according to the Water Framework Directive) but also because there is intense interest for the construction of small hydroelectric plants in this area and in other mountainous rivers. Transects were typically placed in areas representative of the various habitat types, proportionally determined by a habitat mapping process at a larger stream segment. Each transect was permanently marked with metal rods to allow repeated measurements in time. The channel and floodplain were surveyed to create a digital elevation model (DEM) of the river. A detailed topographic survey with a GPS/GNSS Geomax - Zenith 20 was made using reference stations at geodetic control points for highest accuracy. Also, a gauging station was installed downstream of the reach in order to provide water level data in an hourly step. Hydraulic models were applied over a range of flows and river stages, based on past measurements. For selecting the control transects a thorough analysis of various parameters, such as habitat representativity, streambed slope and substrate types, was applied. In this way the habitat changes were described based on various flow scenarios over time. In a later step the results from the hydraulic models will be combined with fish habitat simulation curves (HSCs) focusing on the integration of mesohabitat and microhabitat types in the environmental flow assessment scheme.

  16. Landscape models of brook trout abundance and distribution in lotic habitat with field validation

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKenna, James E.; Johnson, James H.

    2011-01-01

    Brook trout Salvelinus fontinalis are native fish in decline owing to environmental changes. Predictions of their potential distribution and a better understanding of their relationship to habitat conditions would enhance the management and conservation of this valuable species. We used over 7,800 brook trout observations throughout New York State and georeferenced, multiscale landscape condition data to develop four regionally specific artificial neural network models to predict brook trout abundance in rivers and streams. Land cover data provided a general signature of human activity, but other habitat variables were resistant to anthropogenic changes (i.e., changing on a geological time scale). The resulting models predict the potential for any stream to support brook trout. The models were validated by holding 20% of the data out as a test set and by comparison with additional field collections from a variety of habitat types. The models performed well, explaining more than 90% of data variability. Errors were often associated with small spatial displacements of predicted values. When compared with the additional field collections (39 sites), 92% of the predictions were off by only a single class from the field-observed abundances. Among “least-disturbed” field collection sites, all predictions were correct or off by a single abundance class, except for one where brown trout Salmo trutta were present. Other degrading factors were evident at most sites where brook trout were absent or less abundant than predicted. The most important habitat variables included landscape slope, stream and drainage network sizes, water temperature, and extent of forest cover. Predicted brook trout abundances were applied to all New York streams, providing a synoptic map of the distribution of brook trout habitat potential. These fish models set benchmarks of best potential for streams to support brook trout under broad-scale human influences and can assist with planning and

  17. Predicting extinction risks under climate change: coupling stochastic population models with dynamic bioclimatic habitat models

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    David A Keith; H. Resit Akçakaya; Wilfried Thuiller; Guy F Midgley; Richard G Pearson; Steven J Phillips; Helen M Regan; Miguel B Araújo; Tony G Rebelo

    2008-01-01

    Species responses to climate change may be influenced by changes in available habitat, as well as population processes, species interactions and interactions between demographic and landscape dynamics...

  18. A review of continental scale hydrological models and their suitability for drought forecasting in (sub-Saharan) Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trambauer, P.; Maskey, S.; Winsemius, H.; Werner, M.; Uhlenbrook, S.

    The aim of this review is to provide a basis for selecting a suitable hydrological model, or combination of models, for hydrological drought forecasting in Africa at different temporal and spatial scales; for example short and medium range (1-10 days or monthly) forecasts at medium to large river basin scales or seasonal forecasts at the Pan-African scale. Several global hydrological models are currently available with different levels of complexity and data requirements. However, most of these models are likely to fail to properly represent the water balance components that are particularly relevant in arid and semi-arid basins in sub-Saharan Africa. This review critically looks at weaknesses and strengths in the representation of different hydrological processes and fluxes of each model. The major criteria used for assessing the suitability of the models are (1) the representation of the processes that are most relevant for simulating drought conditions, such as interception, evaporation, surface water-groundwater interactions in wetland areas and flood plains and soil moisture dynamics; (2) the capability of the model to be downscaled from a continental scale to a large river basin scale model; and (3) the applicability of the model to be used operationally for drought early warning, given the data availability of the region. This review provides a framework for selecting models for hydrological drought forecasting, conditional on spatial scale, data availability and end-user forecast requirements. Among 16 well known hydrological and land surface models selected for this review, PCR-GLOBWB, GWAVA, HTESSEL, LISFLOOD and SWAT show higher potential and suitability for hydrological drought forecasting in Africa based on the criteria used in this evaluation.

  19. Estimating effective landscape distances and movement corridors: Comparison of habitat and genetic data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maria C. Mateo-Sanchez; Niko Balkenhol; Samuel Cushman; Trinidad Perez; Ana Dominguez; Santiago Saura

    2015-01-01

    Resistance models provide a key foundation for landscape connectivity analyses and are widely used to delineate wildlife corridors. Currently, there is no general consensus regarding the most effective empirical methods to parameterize resistance models, but habitat data (species’ presence data and related habitat suitability models) and genetic data are the...

  20. Pataha Creek Model Watershed : 1999 Habitat Conservation Projects.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bartels, Duane G.

    2000-10-01

    The projects outlined in detail on the attached project reports are a summary of the many projects implemented in the Pataha Creek Model Watershed since it was selected as a model in 1993. Up until last year, demonstration sites using riparian fencing, off site watering facilities, tree and shrub plantings and upland conservation practices were used for information and education and was the main focus of the implementation phase of the watershed plan. These practices are the main focus of the watershed plan to reduce the majority of the sediment entering the stream. However, the watershed stream evaluation team used in the watershed analysis determined that there were problems along the Pataha Creek that needed to be addressed that would add further protection to the banks and therefore a further reduction of sedimentation into the stream. 1999 was a year where a focused effort was made to work on the upland conservation practices to reduce the sedimentation into Pataha Creek. Over 95% of the sediment entering the stream can be tied directly to the upland and riparian areas of the watershed. In stream work was not addressed this year because of the costs associated with these projects and the low impact of the sediment issue concerning Pataha Creeks impact on Chinook Salmon in the Tucannon River.

  1. Modeling the oceanic habitats of pelagic fish using recreational fisheries data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brodie, S.; Hobday, A. J.; Smith, J. A.; Hartog, J. R.; Spillman, C. M.; Everett, J. D.; Taylor, M. D.; Gray, C. A.; Suthers, I. M.

    2016-02-01

    Defining the oceanic habitats of migratory marine species is important for both single species and ecosystem-based fisheries management, particularly when the distribution of these habitats vary temporally. We developed species distribution models that describe the oceanic habitats of two pelagic fish (dolphinfish, Coryphaena hippurus and yellowtail kingfish, Seriola lalandi), using 19 years of presence-only data from a recreational angler-based catch-and-release fishing program. A Poisson point process model within a generalised additive modelling (GAMM) framework was used to determine the species distributions off the east coast of Australia as a function of several oceanographic covariates. This modelling framework uses presence-only data to determine the intensity of fish (fish km-2), rather than a probability of fish presence. Sea surface temperature, sea level anomaly, sea surface temperature frontal index, and eddy kinetic energy were significant environmental predictors for both dolphinfish and kingfish distributions. Models for both species indicate greater fish intensity off the east Australian coast during summer and autumn in response to the regional oceanography, namely shelf incursions by the East Australian Current. This study provides a framework for using presence-only recreational fisheries data to create species distribution models that can contribute to future dynamic spatial management of pelagic fisheries. Using this model framework, we have also created a seasonal forecast of dolphinfish habitats that predict the distribution of fish abundance along the east coast of Australia. Such forecasts allow ocean user groups and management to adapt to spatial and temporal variability in fish distributions. The application of such fish forecasts to the recreational sector will be discussed.

  2. Dynamic Model of Kaplan Turbine Regulating System Suitable for Power System Analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jie Zhao

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Accurate modeling of Kaplan turbine regulating system is of great significance for grid security and stability analysis. In this paper, Kaplan turbine regulating system model is divided into the governor system model, the blade control system model, and the turbine and water diversion system model. The Kaplan turbine has its particularity, and the on-cam relationship between the wicket gate opening and the runner blade angle under a certain water head on the whole range was obtained by high-order curve fitting method. Progressively the linearized Kaplan turbine model, improved ideal Kaplan turbine model, and nonlinear Kaplan turbine model were developed. The nonlinear Kaplan turbine model considered the correction function of the blade angle on the turbine power, thereby improving the model simulation accuracy. The model parameters were calculated or obtained by the improved particle swarm optimization (IPSO algorithm. For the blade control system model, the default blade servomotor time constant given by value of one simplified the modeling and experimental work. Further studies combined with measured test data verified the established model accuracy and laid a foundation for further research into the influence of Kaplan turbine connecting to the grid.

  3. [Cultural regionalization for Coptis chinensis based on 3S technology platform Ⅰ. Study on growth suitability for Coptis chinensis based on ecological factors analysis by Maxent and ArcGIS model].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Xin; Yang, Yan-Fang; Song, Hong-Ping; Zhang, Xiao-Bo; Huang, Lu-Qi; Wu, He-Zhen

    2016-09-01

    At the urgent request of Coptis chinensis planting,growth suitability as assessment indicators for C. chinensis cultivation was proposed and analyzed in this paper , based on chemical quality determination and ecological fators analysis by Maxent and ArcGIS model. Its potential distribution areas at differernt suitability grade and regionalization map were formulated based on statistical theory and growth suitability theory. The results showed that the most suitable habitats is some parts of Chongqing and Hubei province, such as Shizhu, Lichuan, Wulong, Wuxi, Enshi. There are seven ecological factor is the main ecological factors affect the growth of Coptidis Rhizoma, including altitude, precipitation in February and September and the rise of precipitation and altitude is conducive to the accumulation of total alkaloid content in C. chinensis. Therefore, The results of the study not only illustrates the most suitable for the surroundings of Coptidis Rhizoma, also helpful to further research and practice of cultivation regionalization, wild resource monitoring and large-scale cultivation of traditional Chinese medicine plants. Copyright© by the Chinese Pharmaceutical Association.

  4. Spatial Models of Abundance and Habitat Preferences of Commerson’s and Peale’s Dolphin in Southern Patagonian Waters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dellabianca, Natalia A.; Pierce, Graham J.; Raya Rey, Andrea; Scioscia, Gabriela; Miller, David L.; Torres, Mónica A.; Paso Viola, M. Natalia; Schiavini, Adrián C. M.

    2016-01-01

    Commerson’s dolphins (Cephalorhynchus c. commersonii) and Peale’s dolphins (Lagenorhynchus australis) are two of the most common species of cetaceans in the coastal waters of southwest South Atlantic Ocean. Both species are listed as Data Deficient by the IUCN, mainly due to the lack of information about population sizes and trends. The goal of this study was to build spatially explicit models for the abundance of both species in relation to environmental variables using data collected during eight scientific cruises along the Patagonian shelf. Spatial models were constructed using generalized additive models. In total, 88 schools (212 individuals) of Commerson’s dolphin and 134 schools (465 individuals) of Peale’s dolphin were recorded in 8,535 km surveyed. Commerson’s dolphin was found less than 60 km from shore; whereas Peale’s dolphins occurred over a wider range of distances from the coast, the number of animals sighted usually being larger near or far from the coast. Fitted models indicate overall abundances of approximately 22,000 Commerson’s dolphins and 20,000 Peale’s dolphins in the total area studied. This work provides the first large-scale abundance estimate for Peale’s dolphin in the Atlantic Ocean and an update of population size for Commerson’s dolphin. Additionally, our results contribute to baseline data on suitable habitat conditions for both species in southern Patagonia, which is essential for the implementation of adequate conservation measures. PMID:27783627

  5. Niche suitability affects development: skull asymmetry increases in less suitable areas.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Renan Maestri

    Full Text Available For conservation purposes, it is important to take into account the suitability of a species to particular habitats; this information may predict the long-term survival of a species. In this sense, morphological measures of developmental stress, such as fluctuating asymmetry, can be proxies for an individual's performance in different regions. In this study, we conducted tests to determine whether areas with different levels of suitability for a species (generated by ecological niche models were congruent with morphological markers that reflect environmental stress and morphological variance. We generated a Maxent niche model and compared the suitability assessments of several areas with the skull morphology data (fluctuating asymmetry and morphological disparity of populations of the Atlantic forest endemic to Brazil rodent Akodon cursor. Our analyses showed a significant negative relationship between suitability levels and fluctuating asymmetry levels, which indicates that in less suitable areas, the individuals experience numerous disturbances during skull ontogeny. We have not found an association between morphological variance and environmental suitability. As expected, these results suggest that in environments with a lower suitability, developmental stress is increased. Such information is helpful in the understanding of the species evolution and in the selection of priority areas for the conservation of species.

  6. A model of loggerhead sea turtle (Caretta caretta habitat and movement in the oceanic North Pacific.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melanie Abecassis

    Full Text Available Habitat preferences for juvenile loggerhead turtles in the North Pacific were investigated with data from two several-year long tagging programs, using 224 satellite transmitters deployed on wild and captive-reared turtles. Animals ranged between 23 and 81 cm in straight carapace length. Tracks were used to investigate changes in temperature preferences and speed of the animals with size. Average sea surface temperatures along the tracks ranged from 18 to 23 °C. Bigger turtles generally experienced larger temperature ranges and were encountered in warmer surface waters. Seasonal differences between small and big turtles suggest that the larger ones dive deeper than the mixed layer and subsequently target warmer surface waters to rewarm. Average swimming speeds were under 1 km/h and increased with size for turtles bigger than 30 cm. However, when expressed in body lengths per second (bl s(-1, smaller turtles showed much higher swimming speeds (>1 bl s (-1 than bigger ones (0.5 bl s(-1. Temperature and speed values at size estimated from the tracks were used to parameterize a habitat-based Eulerian model to predict areas of highest probability of presence in the North Pacific. The model-generated habitat index generally matched the tracks closely, capturing the north-south movements of tracked animals, but the model failed to replicate observed east-west movements, suggesting temperature and foraging preferences are not the only factors driving large-scale loggerhead movements. Model outputs could inform potential bycatch reduction strategies.

  7. Identification of landscape features influencing gene flow: How useful are habitat selection models?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roffler, Gretchen H.; Schwartz, Michael K.; Pilgrim, Kristy L.; Talbot, Sandra; Sage, Kevin; Adams, Layne G.; Luikart, Gordon

    2016-01-01

    Understanding how dispersal patterns are influenced by landscape heterogeneity is critical for modeling species connectivity. Resource selection function (RSF) models are increasingly used in landscape genetics approaches. However, because the ecological factors that drive habitat selection may be different from those influencing dispersal and gene flow, it is important to consider explicit assumptions and spatial scales of measurement. We calculated pairwise genetic distance among 301 Dall's sheep (Ovis dalli dalli) in southcentral Alaska using an intensive noninvasive sampling effort and 15 microsatellite loci. We used multiple regression of distance matrices to assess the correlation of pairwise genetic distance and landscape resistance derived from an RSF, and combinations of landscape features hypothesized to influence dispersal. Dall's sheep gene flow was positively correlated with steep slopes, moderate peak normalized difference vegetation indices (NDVI), and open land cover. Whereas RSF covariates were significant in predicting genetic distance, the RSF model itself was not significantly correlated with Dall's sheep gene flow, suggesting that certain habitat features important during summer (rugged terrain, mid-range elevation) were not influential to effective dispersal. This work underscores that consideration of both habitat selection and landscape genetics models may be useful in developing management strategies to both meet the immediate survival of a species and allow for long-term genetic connectivity.

  8. A model of greenhouse humidity suitable for control of crop processers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stanghellini, C.; Jong, de T.

    1996-01-01

    A physical model of humidity within a greenhouse was developed, whereby ambient vapour concentration resulted from the balance of three fluxes: crop transpiration, ventilation and condensation at the cover. The present paper describes the application of such a model in the greenhouse climate

  9. Developing a Suitable Model for Water Uptake for Biodegradable Polymers Using Small Training Sets

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Loreto M. Valenzuela

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Prediction of the dynamic properties of water uptake across polymer libraries can accelerate polymer selection for a specific application. We first built semiempirical models using Artificial Neural Networks and all water uptake data, as individual input. These models give very good correlations (R2>0.78 for test set but very low accuracy on cross-validation sets (less than 19% of experimental points within experimental error. Instead, using consolidated parameters like equilibrium water uptake a good model is obtained (R2=0.78 for test set, with accurate predictions for 50% of tested polymers. The semiempirical model was applied to the 56-polymer library of L-tyrosine-derived polyarylates, identifying groups of polymers that are likely to satisfy design criteria for water uptake. This research demonstrates that a surrogate modeling effort can reduce the number of polymers that must be synthesized and characterized to identify an appropriate polymer that meets certain performance criteria.

  10. SAHM:VisTrails (Software for Assisted Habitat Modeling for VisTrails): training course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holcombe, Tracy

    2014-01-01

    VisTrails is an open-source management and scientific workflow system designed to integrate the best of both scientific workflow and scientific visualization systems. Developers can extend the functionality of the VisTrails system by creating custom modules for bundled VisTrails packages. The Invasive Species Science Branch of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Fort Collins Science Center (FORT) and the U.S. Department of the Interior’s North Central Climate Science Center have teamed up to develop and implement such a module—the Software for Assisted Habitat Modeling (SAHM). SAHM expedites habitat modeling and helps maintain a record of the various input data, the steps before and after processing, and the modeling options incorporated in the construction of an ecological response model. There are four main advantages to using the SAHM:VisTrails combined package for species distribution modeling: (1) formalization and tractable recording of the entire modeling process; (2) easier collaboration through a common modeling framework; (3) a user-friendly graphical interface to manage file input, model runs, and output; and (4) extensibility to incorporate future and additional modeling routines and tools. In order to meet increased interest in the SAHM:VisTrails package, the FORT offers a training course twice a year. The course includes a combination of lecture, hands-on work, and discussion. Please join us and other ecological modelers to learn the capabilities of the SAHM:VisTrails package.

  11. Derivation of motor vehicle tailpipe particle emission factors suitable for modelling urban fleet emissions and air quality assessments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keogh, Diane U; Kelly, Joe; Mengersen, Kerrie; Jayaratne, Rohan; Ferreira, Luis; Morawska, Lidia

    2010-03-01

    Urban motor vehicle fleets are a major source of particulate matter pollution, especially of ultrafine particles (diameters vehicle particle emission factors derived using a wide range of different measurement methods for different particle sizes, conducted in different parts of the world. Therefore, the choice as to which are the most suitable particle emission factors to use in transport modelling and health impact assessments presented as a very difficult task. The aim of this study was to derive a comprehensive set of tailpipe particle emission factors for different vehicle and road type combinations, covering the full size range of particles emitted, which are suitable for modelling urban fleet emissions. A large body of data available in the international literature on particle emission factors for motor vehicles derived from measurement studies was compiled and subjected to advanced statistical analysis, to determine the most suitable emission factors to use in modelling urban fleet emissions. This analysis resulted in the development of five statistical models which explained 86%, 93%, 87%, 65% and 47% of the variation in published emission factors for particle number, particle volume, PM(1), PM(2.5) and PM(10), respectively. A sixth model for total particle mass was proposed but no significant explanatory variables were identified in the analysis. From the outputs of these statistical models, the most suitable particle emission factors were selected. This selection was based on examination of the statistical robustness of the statistical model outputs, including consideration of conservative average particle emission factors with the lowest standard errors, narrowest 95% confidence intervals and largest sample sizes and the explanatory model variables, which were vehicle type (all particle metrics), instrumentation (particle number and PM(2.5)), road type (PM(10)) and size range measured and speed limit on the road (particle volume). A multiplicity of

  12. Habitat fragmentation, vole population fluctuations, and the ROMPA hypothesis: An experimental test using model landscapes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Batzli, George O

    2016-11-01

    Increased habitat fragmentation leads to smaller size of habitat patches and to greater distance between patches. The ROMPA hypothesis (ratio of optimal to marginal patch area) uniquely links vole population fluctuations to the composition of the landscape. It states that as ROMPA decreases (fragmentation increases), vole population fluctuations will increase (including the tendency to display multi-annual cycles in abundance) because decreased proportions of optimal habitat result in greater population declines and longer recovery time after a harsh season. To date, only comparative observations in the field have supported the hypothesis. This paper reports the results of the first experimental test. I used prairie voles, Microtus ochrogaster, and mowed grassland to create model landscapes with 3 levels of ROMPA (high with 25% mowed, medium with 50% mowed and low with 75% mowed). As ROMPA decreased, distances between patches of favorable habitat (high cover) increased owing to a greater proportion of unfavorable (mowed) habitat. Results from the first year with intensive live trapping indicated that the preconditions for operation of the hypothesis existed (inversely density dependent emigration and, as ROMPA decreased, increased per capita mortality and decreased per capita movement between optimal patches). Nevertheless, contrary to the prediction of the hypothesis that populations in landscapes with high ROMPA should have the lowest variability, 5 years of trapping i