lunes, 30 de noviembre de 2015

The 2015 Introductory Course on CMRR analysis has ended: see you next year!

The 2015 Introductory Course on CMRR analysis has ended last friday. Thanks to all participants. We had the opportunity to learn about Oryx and Wolves, Cormorants, Bears, Butterflies, Small mammals, Woodcocks, about hunting, conservations and wind farms.  It has been the opportunity to address scientific questions and, on top of all, to meet nice people.  Thank you again.

Debating about GOF and AIC, of course (apologises for the missing persons, it is the only pic I have)
See you next year, last week of November, as always.

martes, 24 de noviembre de 2015

New Publication on Leatherback turtles

Tomillo, P., Saba, V. S., Lombard, C. D., Valiulis, J. M., Robinson, N. J., Paladino, F.V., Spotila, J. R., Fernández, C., Rivas, M.L., Tucek, J., Nel, R. nd Oro, D. 2015. Global analysis of the effect of local climate on the hatchling output of leatherback turtles. Scientific Report, DOI: 10.1038/srep16789

Photo from
Summary: The most recent climate change projections show a global increase in temperatures along with precipitation changes throughout the 21st century. However, regional projections do not always match global projections and species with global distributions may exhibit varying regional susceptibility to climate change. Here we show the effect of local climatic conditions on the hatchling output of leatherback turtles (Dermochelys coriacea) at four nesting sites encompassing the Pacific, Atlantic and Indian Oceans. We found a heterogeneous effect of climate. Hatchling output increased with long-term precipitation in areas with dry climatic conditions (Playa Grande, Pacific Ocean and Sandy Point, Caribbean Sea), but the effect varied in areas where precipitation was high (Pacuare, Caribbean Sea) and was not detected at the temperate site (Maputaland, Indian Ocean). High air temperature reduced hatchling output only at the area experiencing seasonal droughts (Playa Grande). Climatic projections showed a drastic increase in air temperature and a mild decrease in precipitation at all sites by 2100. The most unfavorable conditions were projected for Sandy Point where hatching success has already declined over time along with precipitation levels. The heterogeneous effect of climate may lead to local extinctions of leatherback turtles in some areas but survival in others by 2100.

viernes, 20 de noviembre de 2015

New Publication on recruitment of Scopoli's Shearwaters on early view

Sanz, A., Igual, J.-M., Genovart, M., Oro, D., and Tavecchia G. 2016.Estimating recruitment and survival in partially-monitored populations Journal Of Applied Ecology. in press. DOI: 10.1111/1365-2664.12580

Summary: In evolutionary and ecological studies, demographic parameters are commonly derived from detailed information collected on a limited number of individuals or in a confined sector of the breeding area. This partial monitoring is expected to underestimate survival and recruitment processes because individuals marked in a monitored location may move to or recruit in an unobservable site.
We formulate a multi-event capture–recapture model using E-SURGE software which incorporates additional information on breeding dispersal and the proportion of monitored sites to obtain unbiased estimates of survival and recruitment rates. Using simulated data we assessed the biases in recruitment, survival and population growth rate when monitoring 10% to 90% of the whole population in a short and a long-lived species with low breeding dispersal. Finally, we illustrate the approach using real data from a long-term monitoring program of a colony of Scopoli's shearwaters Calonectris diomedea.
We found that demographic parameters estimated without considering the proportion of the area monitored were generally underestimated. These biases caused a substantial error in the estimated population growth rate, especially when a low proportion of breeding individuals were monitored.
The proposed capture–recapture model successfully corrected for partial monitoring and provided robust demographic estimates.
Synthesis and applications. In many cases, animal breeding populations can only be monitored partially. Consequently, recruitment and immature survival are underestimated, but the extent of these biases depends on the proportion of the area that remains undetected and the degree of breeding dispersal. We present a new method to obtain robust and unbiased measures of survival and recruitment processes from capture–recapture data. The method can be applied to any monitored population regardless of the type of nests (e.g. artificial or natural) or breeding system (e.g. colonial or territorial animals) and it only relies on an estimate of the proportion of the monitored area. The unbiased estimates obtained by this method can be used to improve the reliability of predictions of demographic population models for species’ conservation and management.

lunes, 16 de noviembre de 2015

Check the cover !

Photo F. Sergio
The image by F. Sergio  to illustrate the publication on the Journal of Applied Ecology about the effect of satellite tags on Black kite ecology has been chosen as a cover for the new issue.

Congratulations Fabrizio, nice picture !

lunes, 9 de noviembre de 2015

New Book !!!!! Edited by R. Spotila and P. Santidrián Tomillo: The Leatherback Turtle - Biology and Conservation

New book out now!! 
The leatherback Turtle, Biology and Conservation. 
 Edited by J. R. Spotila and P. Santidrián Tomillo. Johns Hopkins University Press.

Weighing as much as 2,000 pounds and reaching lengths of over seven feet, leatherback turtles are the world’s largest reptile. These unusual sea turtles have a thick, pliable shell that helps them to withstand great depths—they can swim more than one thousand meters below the surface in search of food. And what food source sustains these goliaths? Their diet consists almost exclusively of jellyfish, a meal they crisscross the oceans to find.Leatherbacks have been declining in recent decades, and some predict they will be gone by the end of this century. Why? Because of two primary factors: human redevelopment of nesting beaches and commercial fishing. There are only twenty-nine index beaches in the world where these turtles nest, and there is immense pressure to develop most of them into homes or resorts. At the same time, longline and gill net fisheries continue to overwhelm waters frequented by leatherbacks.
In The Leatherback Turtle, James R. Spotila and Pilar Santidrián Tomillo bring together the world’s leading experts to produce a volume that reveals the biology of the leatherback while putting a spotlight on the conservation problems and solutions related to the species. The book leaves us with options: embark on the conservation strategy laid out within its pages and save one of nature’s most splendid creations, or watch yet another magnificent species disappear.

James R. Spotila is the L. Drew Betz Chair Professor of Environmental Science at Drexel University and director of the Center for Biodiversity and Conservation. The founding president of the International Sea Turtle Society and chairman of the board of The Leatherback Trust, he is the author of Sea Turtles: A Complete Guide to Their Biology, Behavior, and Conservation and Saving Sea Turtles: Extraordinary Stories from the Battle against Extinction.  

Pilar Santidrián Tomillo is a Marie Curie Fellow at the Mediterranean Institute for Advanced Studies and the research director of The Leatherback Trust.
(have a look inside here)