Science Enabled by Specimen Data

Farooq, H., Azevedo, J. A. R., Soares, A., Antonelli, A., & Faurby, S. (2020). Mapping Africa’s biodiversity: More of the same is just not good enough. Systematic Biology. doi:10.1093/sysbio/syaa090 https://doi.org/10.1093/sysbio/syaa090

Species distribution data are fundamental to the understanding of biodiversity patterns and processes. Yet, such data are strongly affected by sampling biases, mostly related to site accessibility. The understanding of these biases is therefore crucial in systematics, biogeography and conservation. …

Li, X., Li, B., Wang, G., Zhan, X., & Holyoak, M. (2020). Deeply digging the interaction effect in multiple linear regressions using a fractional-power interaction term. MethodsX, 7, 101067. doi:10.1016/j.mex.2020.101067 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.mex.2020.101067

In multiple regression Y ~ β0 + β1X1 + β2X2 + β3X1 X2 + ɛ., the interaction term is quantified as the product of X1 and X2. We developed fractional-power interaction regression (FPIR), using βX1M X2N as the interaction term. The rationale of FPIR is that the slopes of Y-X1 regression along the X2 gr…

Cardador, L., & Blackburn, T. M. (2020). A global assessment of human influence on niche shifts and risk predictions of bird invasions. Global Ecology and Biogeography. doi:10.1111/geb.13166 https://doi.org/10.1111/geb.13166

Aim: Estimating the strength of niche conservatism is key for predictions of invasion risk. Most studies consider only the climatic niche, but other factors, such as human disturbance, also shape niches. Whether occupation of human habitats in the alien range depends on the native tolerances of spec…

Rotenberry, J. T., & Balasubramaniam, P. (2020). Connecting species’ geographical distributions to environmental variables: range maps versus observed points of occurrence. Ecography. doi:10.1111/ecog.04871 https://doi.org/10.1111/ecog.04871

Connecting the geographical occurrence of a species with underlying environmental variables is fundamental for many analyses of life history evolution and for modeling species distributions for both basic and practical ends. However, raw distributional information comes principally in two forms: poi…

Yun, S., Lee, J.-W., & Yoo, J.-C. (2020). Host-parasite interaction augments climate change effect in an avian brood parasite, the lesser cuckoo Cuculus poliocephalus. Global Ecology and Conservation, 22, e00976. doi:10.1016/j.gecco.2020.e00976 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.gecco.2020.e00976

Avian brood parasites such as Cuculus cuckoos are recognized to be affected more severely by the adverse effect of climate change owing to close host-parasite relationships. However, the spatial effect of climate change has rarely been assessed in the avian brood parasite-host system. To test this e…

Li, J., Hughes, A. C., & Dudgeon, D. (2019). Mapping wader biodiversity along the East Asian—Australasian flyway. PLOS ONE, 14(1), e0210552. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0210552 https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0210552

Background and goal: The study is conducted to facilitate conservation of migratory wader species along the East Asian-Australasian Flyway, particularly to 1) Identify hotspots of wader species richness along the flyway and effectively map how these might change between breeding, non-breeding and mi…

Liu, X., Blackburn, T. M., Song, T., Li, X., Huang, C., & Li, Y. (2019). Risks of Biological Invasion on the Belt and Road. Current Biology, 29(3), 499–505.e4. doi:10.1016/j.cub.2018.12.036 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cub.2018.12.036

China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is an unprecedented global development program that involves nearly half of the world’s countries [1]. It not only will have economic and political influences, but also may generate multiple environmental challenges and is a focus of considerable academic and p…

Inman, R., Franklin, J., Esque, T., & Nussear, K. (2018). Spatial sampling bias in the Neotoma paleoecological archives affects species paleo-distribution models. Quaternary Science Reviews, 198, 115–125. doi:10.1016/j.quascirev.2018.08.015 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.quascirev.2018.08.015

The ability to infer paleo-distributions with limited knowledge of absence makes species distribution modeling (SDM) a useful tool for exploring paleobiogeographic questions. Spatial sampling bias is a known issue when modeling extant species. Here we quantify the spatial sampling bias in a North Am…

Deka, M., & Morshed, N. (2018). Mapping Disease Transmission Risk of Nipah Virus in South and Southeast Asia. Tropical Medicine and Infectious Disease, 3(2), 57. doi:10.3390/tropicalmed3020057 https://doi.org/10.3390/tropicalmed3020057

Since 1998, Nipah virus (NiV) (genus: Henipavirus; family: Paramyxoviridae), an often-fatal and highly virulent zoonotic pathogen, has caused sporadic outbreak events. Fruit bats from the genus Pteropus are the wildlife reservoirs and have a broad distribution throughout South and Southeast Asia, an…

Guedes, T. B., Sawaya, R. J., Zizka, A., Laffan, S., Faurby, S., Pyron, R. A., … Antonelli, A. (2017). Patterns, biases and prospects in the distribution and diversity of Neotropical snakes. Global Ecology and Biogeography, 27(1), 14–21. doi:10.1111/geb.12679 https://doi.org/10.1111/geb.12679

Motivation: We generated a novel database of Neotropical snakes (one of the world’s richest herpetofauna) combining the most comprehensive, manually compiled distribution dataset with publicly available data. We assess, for the first time, the diversity patterns for all Neotropical snakes as well as…