Spatial conservation and choice of biodiversity surrogates and species distribution models

From the abstract:  “Pressure to conserve biodiversity with limited resources has led to increasing use of species distribution models (SDMs) for spatial conservation prioritization. Published spatial prioritization exercises often focus on well-studied groups, with data compiled from on-line databases of ad-hoc collections. Conservation plans generally aim to protect all components of biodiversity, and it is implied that the species used in prioritization act as surrogates.”  Source: onlinelibrary.wiley.com

GR:  The results indicate that on-the-ground field surveys are required.  “Because valid surrogacy is unlikely with most existing data sets, investment in high quality data for less-surveyed groups prior to planning should still be a priority. If this is not possible, then it is advisable to analyse the sensitivity of conservation plans to the assumed surrogacy and quality of data available.”

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