Submit a preprint

Direct submissions to PCI Ecology from are possible using the B2J service


Data stochasticity and model parametrisation impact the performance of species distribution models: insights from a simulation studyuse asterix (*) to get italics
Charlotte Lambert, Auriane VirgiliPlease use the format "First name initials family name" as in "Marie S. Curie, Niels H. D. Bohr, Albert Einstein, John R. R. Tolkien, Donna T. Strickland"
<p>Species distribution models (SDM) are widely used to describe and explain how species relate to their environment, and predict their spatial distributions. As such, they are the cornerstone of most of spatial planning efforts worldwide. SDM can be implemented with wide array of data types (presence-only, presence-absence, count...), which can either be point- or areal-based, and use a wide array of environmental conditions as predictor variables. The choice of the sampling type as well as the resolution of environmental conditions to be used are recognized as of crucial importance, yet we lack any quantification of the effects these decisions may have on SDM reliability. In the present work, we fill this gap with an unprecedented simulation procedure. We simulated 100 possible distributions of two different virtual species in two different regions. Species distribution were modelled using either segment- or areal-based sampling and five different spatial resolutions of environmental conditions. The SDM performances were inspected by statistical metrics, model composition, shapes of relationships and prediction quality. We provided clear evidence of stochasticity in the modelling process (particularly in the shapes of relationships): two dataset from the same survey, species and region could yield different results. Sampling type had stronger effects than spatial resolution on the final model relevance. The effect of coarsening the resolution was directly related to the resistance of the spatial features to changes of scale: SDM failed to adequately identify spatial distributions when the spatial features targeted by the species were diluted by resolution coarsening. These results have important implications for the SDM community, backing up some commonly accepted choices, but also by highlighting some up-to-now unexpected features of SDM (stochasticity). As a whole, this work calls for carefully weighted decisions in implementing models, and for caution in interpreting results.</p> should fill this box only if you chose 'All or part of the results presented in this preprint are based on data'. URL must start with http:// or https:// should fill this box only if you chose 'Scripts were used to obtain or analyze the results'. URL must start with http:// or https://
You should fill this box only if you chose 'Codes have been used in this study'. URL must start with http:// or https://
change of support, grain size, spatial resolution, GAM, grid-based model, segment-based sampling, point-based sampling
NonePlease indicate the methods that may require specialised expertise during the peer review process (use a comma to separate various required expertises).
Biogeography, Habitat selection, Macroecology, Marine ecology, Spatial ecology, Metacommunities & Metapopulations, Species distributions, Statistical ecology
David Miller;, Elizabeth Becker;, Len Thomas;, Jane Elith;, Phil Bouchet;, Yan Reisinger;, Stephanie Brodie;, Damaris Zurell; No need for them to be recommenders of PCIEcology. Please do not suggest reviewers for whom there might be a conflict of interest. Reviewers are not allowed to review preprints written by close colleagues (with whom they have published in the last four years, with whom they have received joint funding in the last four years, or with whom they are currently writing a manuscript, or submitting a grant proposal), or by family members, friends, or anyone for whom bias might affect the nature of the review - see the code of conduct
e.g. John Doe []
2023-01-20 09:43:51
Timothée Poisot