NCEAS Project 4980

Testing alternative methodologies for modeling species' ecological niches and predicting geographic distributions

  • A. Townsend Peterson
  • Craig Moritz

ActivityDatesFurther Information
Working Group28th May—2nd June 2002Participant List  
Graduate Student1st August 2002—31st July 2003Participant List  
Working Group27th—30th April 2003Participant List  
Working Group17th—21st March 2004Participant List  
Working Group5th—9th January 2005Participant List  

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Knowledge of world biodiversity remains sparse, with millions of species left to be described, most species' geographic distributions poorly understood and the ecological and evolutionary processes that underpin geographic patterns of diversity still far from resolved. Many large-scale conservation projects, however, depend critically on more complete descriptions of species' distributions and there is increasing interest in incorporating process as well as pattern into biodiversity evaluation. The inferential step that leads from incomplete present knowledge to a explicit prediction of geographic distribution is presently made via diverse methods which have not been tested against each other to establish which would provide the greatest predictive ability for different types of questions and data. We propose a NCEAS working group that will review and compare diverse predictive modeling approaches with the goal of producing an ideal strategy for modeling parameters related to ecological niches and predicting geographic distributions.

TypeProducts of NCEAS Research
Journal Article Dudik, Miroslav; Schapire, Robert; Phillips, Steven. 2005. Correcting sample selection bias in maximum entropy density estimation. Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems. Vol: 18. Pages 323-330.
Journal Article Elith, Jane; Ferrier, Simon; Huettmann, Falk; Leathwick, John. 2005. The evaluation strip: A new and robust method for plotting predicted responses from species distribution models. Ecological Modelling. Vol: 186. Pages 280-289.
Journal Article Elith, Jane; Graham, Catherine. 2006. Comparing Methodologies for modeling species' distributions from presence-only data. Ecography. Vol: 29. Pages 129-151.
Journal Article Elith, Jane; Graham, Catherine; Anderson, Robert P.; Dudik, Miroslav; Ferrier, Simon; Guisan, Antoine; Hijmans, Robert J.; Huettmann, Falk; Leathwick, John; Lehmann, Anthony; Li, Jin; Lohmann, Lucia; Loiselle, Bette; Manion, Glenn; Moritz, Craig; Nakamura, Miguel; Nakazawa, Yoshinori; Peterson, A. Townsend; Phillips, Steven; Richardson, Karen; Scachetti Pereira, Ricardo; Schapire, Robert; Williams, Stephen E.; Wisz, Mary; Zimmermann, Niklaus E.; Soberon Mainero, Jorge; Overton, Jake. 2006. Novel methods improve prediction of species' distributions from occurrence data. Ecography. Vol: 29. Pages 129-151.
Journal Article Elith, Jane; Leathwick, John. 2007. Predicting species distributions from museum and herbarium records using multiresponse models fitted with multivariate adaptive regression splines. Diversity and Distributions. Vol: 13(3). Pages 265-275.
Journal Article Graham, Catherine; Ferrier, Simon; Huettmann, Falk; Moritz, Craig; Peterson, A. Townsend. 2004. New developments in museum-based informatics and applications in biodiversity analysis. Trends in Ecology & Evolution. Vol: 19(9). Pages 497-503.
Journal Article Graham, Catherine; Elith, Jane; Hijmans, Robert J.; Guisan, Antoine; Peterson, A. Townsend; Loiselle, Bette. 2008. The influence of spatial errors in species occurrence data used in distribution models. Journal of Applied Ecology. Vol: 45. Pages 239-247.
Journal Article Guisan, Antoine; Graham, Catherine; Elith, Jane; Huettmann, Falk. 2007. Sensitivity of predictive species distribution models to change in grain size: Insights from a multi-models experiment across five continents. Diversity and Distributions. Vol: 13(3). Pages 332-340.
Journal Article Guisan, Antoine; Elith, Jane; Graham, Catherine; Peterson, A. Townsend; Phillips, Steven; Zimmermann, Niklaus E. 2007. What matters for predicting spatial occurrences of trees: Techniques, data, or species' characteristics?. Ecological Monographs. Pages 615-630.
Journal Article Huettmann, Falk; Linke, Julia. 2003. An automated method to derive habitat preferences of wildlife in GIS and telemetry studies: A flexible software tool and examples of its application. European Journal of Wildlife Research. Vol: 49(3). Pages 219-232.
Journal Article Huettmann, Falk; Linke, Julia. 2003. Assessment of different link functions for modeling binary data to derive sound inferences and predictions. LNCS-International Conference on Computational Science and Applications (ICCSA). Vol: 2669. Pages 43-48.
Journal Article Peterson, A. Townsend. 2006. Uses and requirements of ecological niche models and related distributional models. Biodiversity Informatics. Vol: 3. Pages 59-72.
Journal Article Phillips, Steven; Dudik, Miroslav; Elith, Jane; Graham, Catherine; Lehmann, Anthony; Leathwick, John; Ferrier, Simon. 2009. Sample selection bias and presence-only models of species distribution models: Implications for background and pseudo-absence data. Ecological Applications. Vol: 19(1). Pages 181-197.
Journal Article Wisz, Mary; Hijmans, Robert J.; Li, Jin; Phillips, Steven; Peterson, A. Townsend; Graham, Catherine. Effects of sample size on the performance of species distribution models. Journal of Applied Ecology.