Modeling GORP (genetics-occurrence-rhizosphere-phenotype)

We are very happy to partner with collaborators at Kansas State University and the University of Kansas to study the interdependence between the occurrence, phenotype, genotype, and rhizosphere (soil microbes) of a dominant tallgrass prairie plant, Big Bluestem (Andropogon gerardii)! On this end, we’ll be constructing highly-hierarchical Bayesian models to test functional hypotheses about each …
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Shortlisted on The Wildlife Society’s 2020 Wildlife Publication Awards!

Our paper on spatially-varying controls of pika distributions was shortlisted (of 5 papers) by The Wildlife Society! This is a triennial award with a record number of submissions, so we’re honored, regardless of the final outcome. Smith, A.B., Beever, E.A., Kessler, A.E., Johnston, A.N., Ray, C., Epps, C.W., Lanier, H.C., Klinger, R.C., Rodhouse, T.J., Varner, …
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The decimation of Madagascar’s rainforest habitat

It is honestly with sadness that I announce our new publication on the fate of Madagscar’s rainforest habitat in Nature Climate Change. Modeling deforestation assuming the lowest rate of deforestation across the period 2000-2014, I could only get the rainforest to last to the 2070s… and the highest rate of loss occurred in 2018, outside …
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Runner-up in Ecography’s E4 Award!

Our article on formal integration of different lines of biogeographic evidence (genetic, pollen, occurrence) won runner-up in annual Ecography’s E4 Award! Hoban, S., Dawson, A. Robinson, J., Smith, A.B., Strand, A. 2019. Inference of biogeographic history by formally integrating distinct lines of evidence: genetic, environmental niche, and fossil. Ecography 42:1991-2011. (open access)

Climate coherency

After many long years of battling data bottlenecks, I am ecstatic to announce the publication of our paper on intraspecific variation in responses of pikas to climate change. To our great surprise, dividing the range by ecoregions–not genetic lineages–best captures observed differences in how the species responded to 20 mechanistic climatic variables. Many thanks to …
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How well do species distribution models measure variable importance?

One of the most common applications of SDMs is to identify important variables and measure their relative effect. Despite hundreds of papers assessing the predictive power of SDMs, there are none assessing their inferential power. Maria Santos and Adam recently completed the first such analysis! Smith, A.B. and Santos, M.J. Testing the ability of species …
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Welcome, David Henderson!

We are happy to host David Henderson as part of his rotation at Washington University in St. Louis during the spring semester of 2019! David is interested in understanding biogeographic patterns using herbarium records. Many records are only “vaguely” georeferenced (i.e., to a county or similar political unit). Vague records can represent 40% or more …
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