Uncertainty in identifying local extinctions: the distribution of missing data and its effects on biodiversity measures

Boakes, Elizabeth H., Fuller, Richard, McGowan, Philip J. K. and Mace, Georgina M. (2016) Uncertainty in identifying local extinctions: the distribution of missing data and its effects on biodiversity measures. Biology Letters, 12 3: . doi:10.1098/rsbl.2015.0824


Author Boakes, Elizabeth H.
Fuller, Richard
McGowan, Philip J. K.
Mace, Georgina M.
Title Uncertainty in identifying local extinctions: the distribution of missing data and its effects on biodiversity measures
Journal name Biology Letters   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1744-957X
1744-9561
Publication date 2016-03-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1098/rsbl.2015.0824
Open Access Status DOI
Volume 12
Issue 3
Total pages 4
Place of publication London, United Kingdom
Publisher The Royal Society Publishing
Language eng
Abstract Identifying local extinctions is integral to estimating species richness and geographic range changes and informing extinction risk assessments. However, the species occurrence records underpinning these estimates are frequently compromised by a lack of recorded species absences making it impossible to distinguish between local extinction and lack of survey effort—for a rigorously compiled database of European and Asian Galliformes, approximately 40% of half-degree cells contain records from before but not after 1980. We investigate the distribution of these cells, finding differences between the Palaearctic (forests, low mean human influence index (HII), outside protected areas (PAs)) and Indo-Malaya (grassland, high mean HII, outside PAs). Such cells also occur more in less peaceful countries. We show that different interpretations of these cells can lead to large over/under-estimations of species richness and extent of occurrences, potentially misleading prioritization and extinction risk assessment schemes. To avoid mistakes, local extinctions inferred from sightings records need to account for the history of survey effort in a locality.
Keyword Biodiversity monitoring
Extinction inference
Galliformes
Local extinction
Spatial bias
Species occurrence data
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: HERDC Pre-Audit
School of Biological Sciences Publications
 
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Created: Thu, 10 Mar 2016, 21:39:13 EST by Dr Richard Fuller on behalf of School of Biological Sciences