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Ecological Niches and Geographic Distributions (MPB-49)$
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A. Townsend Peterson, Jorge Soberón, Richard G. Pearson, Robert P. Anderson, Enrique Martínez-Meyer, Miguel Nakamura, and Miguel B. Araújo

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780691136868

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691136868.001.0001

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Discovering Biodiversity

Discovering Biodiversity

(p.189) Chapter Eleven Discovering Biodiversity
Ecological Niches and Geographic Distributions (MPB-49)

A. Townsend Peterson

Jorge Soberón

Richard G. Pearson

Robert P. Anderson

Enrique Martínez-Meyer

Miguel Nakamura

Miguel Bastos Araújo

Princeton University Press

This chapter discusses the conceptual basis of using ecological niche modeling for discovering new elements of biodiversity. More specifically, it examines the use of ecological niche models to guide searches for and discovery of unknown populations of species as well as species limits. It also explains how niche conservatism provides some degree of predictability across related taxa and makes the use of niche models for discovering biodiversity possible. For applications focused on discovery of unknown species, the chapter shows that niche conservatism is necessary if predictions of likely distributional areas are to prove realistic. Finally, it reviews practical considerations that must be taken into account in applications of ecological niche models oriented at discovering biodiversity, along with the caveats and limitations of such applications.

Keywords:   ecological niche modeling, biodiversity, ecological niche, model, populations, species limit, niche conservatism, predictability, unknown species, distributional area

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