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Environmental variables determining the distribution of an avian parasite: the case of the Philornis torquans complex (Diptera: Muscidae) in South Americause asterix (*) to get italics
Pablo F. Cuervo, Alejandro Percara, Lucas Monje, Pablo M. Beldomenico, Martín A. QuirogaPlease 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>*Philornis* flies are the major cause of myasis in altricial nestlings of neotropical birds. Its impact ranges from subtle to lethal, being of major concern in endangered bird species with geographically-restricted, fragmented and small-sized populations. In spite of its relevance for bird conservation, there is little information about the environmental dimensions determining their geographical range. We identified for the first time the macro-environmental variables constraining the abiotic niche of the *P. torquans* complex in South America, and provided a model map of its potential distribution based on environmental suitability. We used maximum entropy to model the ecological niche of the *P. torquans* complex, and to determine the contributing scenopoetic variables. We applied most of the recommendations to produce robust ecological niche models: accounting for sampling bias and spatial autocorrelation; using an accessible area for model calibration; testing multiple combinations of model parameters; using multiple statistical criteria; using a number of model replicates to determine consistency and uncertainty in geographical predictions. We identified the minimum temperature of the coldest month as the most relevant variable, associated with the largest decrease in habitat suitability in Brazil and northern South America. Furthermore, the mean temperature of the warmest quarter limited suitability mostly along the Andean range. In addition, humidity and moisture are influential factors in most of Argentina, northern Chile and coastal Peru. The geographical projection of the niche model suggests that environments in most of central-eastern Argentina, and in a broad area in central Chile, are suitable for the presence of the *P. torquans* complex. Besides of contributing to the knowledge of the ecology of the genus, this study is of relevance as a tool for bird conservation and represents a good reference for future work on the distribution of this parasite genus.</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:// should fill this box only if you chose 'Codes have been used in this study'. URL must start with http:// or https://
Philornis torquans complex; distribution model; southern South America; Maxent
NonePlease indicate the methods that may require specialised expertise during the peer review process (use a comma to separate various required expertises).
Biogeography, Macroecology, Parasitology, Species distributions
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
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2019-11-26 21:31:33
Rodrigo Medel