Prediction of species distributions is central to diverse applications in ecology, evolution and conservation science. There is now increasing electronic access to vast sets of occurrence records in museums and herbaria all over the world, yet there has been little effective guidance on how best to use this information to model and predict species distributions.
A recent study in the journal Ecography by an international team of researchers now offers the by far most comprehensive model comparison ever made, comparing the performance of 16 methods over 226 species from 6 regions of the world. The study then takes the approach one step further and validates model-based predictions against data collected independently.
Along with well-established modelling methods, the team have explored novel approaches such as machine-learning methods and community models, both of which have features that may make them particularly well suited to noisy or sparse information that are typical of species occurrence data. The novel methods consistently outperformed more established methods. The results of the study hold great promise for the use of data from the Worlds museums and herbaria and will be invaluable for anyone wanting to analyse species distributions in years to come.
Jane Elith | EurekAlert!
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An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.
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Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.
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Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.
As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...
Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.
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Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine
Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...
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