NCEAS Project 10941

Synthetic macroecological models of species diversity

  • Nicholas J. Gotelli
  • Robert K. Colwell
  • Carsten Rahbek

ActivityDatesFurther Information
Working Group6th—8th October 2006Participant List  
Working Group5th—7th October 2007Participant List  
Working Group11th—13th October 2008Participant List  

A major unsolved problem in macroecology and biogeography is the origin and maintenance of species richness gradients. Biogeographers are currently divided into three major camps: those who favor historical or phylogenetic mechanisms, those who favor explanations based principally on geographic patterns of contemporary environmental variables, and those who advocate the incorporation of null model approaches. In the existing catalog of simple null models, species¿ geographic ranges are randomized within a bounded domain, producing a middomain effect (MDE)¿a peak of species richness towards the center of the geographical domain. This working group will seek to develop a novel synthesis of historical, contemporary environmental, and MDE hypotheses, by modeling species¿ geographic ranges in an environmentally heterogeneous geographical domain, with spatially explicit colonization, range expansion, speciation, and extinction.

TypeProducts of NCEAS Research
Journal Article Chao, Anne; Colwell, Robert K.; Lin, Chih-Wei; Gotelli, Nicholas J. 2009. Sufficient sampling for asymptotic minimum species richness estimators. Edited by F. He Ecology. Vol: 90(4). Pages 1125-1133.
Journal Article Colwell, Robert K.; Rangel, Thiago Fernando L. 2010. A stochastic, evolutionary model for range shifts and richness on tropical elevational gradients under Quaternary glacial cycles. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. Vol: 365. Pages 3695-3707. (Online version)
Book Chapter Connolly, Sean R. 2009. Macroecological theory and the analysis of species richness gradients. Edited by Witman, J.; Roy, K. Marine Macroecology. University of Chicago Press. Chicago. Pages 279-309.
Journal Article Gotelli, Nicholas J.; Anderson, Marti J.; Arita, Hector T.; Chao, Anne; Colwell, Robert K.; Connolly, Sean R.; Currie, David J.; Dunn, Robert; Graves, Gary R.; Green, Jessica L.; Grytnes, John A.; Jiang, Yi-Huei; Jetz, Walter; Lyons, Kathleen; McCain, Christy M.; Magurran, Anne E.; Rahbek, Carsten; Rangel, Thiago Fernando L.; Soberon Mainero, Jorge; Webb, Campbell O.; Willig, Michael R. 2009. Patterns and causes of species richness: A general simulation model for macroecology. Ecology Letters. Vol: 12. Pages 873–886.
Journal Article Gotelli, Nicholas J.; Chao, Anne; Colwell, Robert K.; Hwang, Wen-Han; Graves, Gary R. 2012. Specimen-based modeling stopping rules and the extinction of the Ivory-Billed Woodpecker. Conservation Biology. Vol: 26(1). Pages 47-56. (Online version)