Species distribution modelling

Species distribution modelling has become an important tool for understanding likely impacts of climate change on species.

These pages present my work so far in modelling two groups of species: microchiropteran bats of the Australian and Papua New Guinea region, and exotic plant species naturalised in Australia.

Microchiroptera of Australia & PNG

Bats of the sub-order Microchiroptera are a special interst of mine. I first looked at various aspects of their zoogeography in the mid-1980s and "messed about" with species distribution models in the mid-1990s. Now I have taken up the work of species distirbution modelling in ernest. This is made possible by two important developments: (a) the availability of on-line distribution data, and (b) a new and powerful set of modelling tools. You can see the results of my work here.

Exotic plants naturalised in Australia

Australia is host to 2,532 species of plants which have been introduced since Europeans arrived and are known to have established self-sustaining populations. (This number comes from a search of the APNI database made on 12 March 2012 using webservices supplied by ALA and APNI). There are a few hundred that are currently considered to be weeds that threaten agricultural production or act as threatening processes for one or more native species of plants and animals. These "headline" naturalised species are not the whole picture. What might climate change mean for the threat posed by the current list of "baddies"? What will climate change mean for the greater pool of naturalised species which are not currently considered a threat?


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Latest news

Species distribution models (available here) for most microchiropteran species in Australia and New Guinea have been completed.

All 2,532 introduced plant species in Australia have been re-modelled to incorporate the latest distribution records from GBIF and ALA. See the results here.

Weeds of National Significance (WoNS) list updated: The Australian Weeds Committee announced on 20 April 2012 that 12 additional species/species complexes had been added to the declared WoNS list. Further information is available at Weeds Australia. The WoNS table for my models found here has been updated to reflect this change.