Habitat modelling of tracking data from multiple marine predators identifies important areas in the Southern Indian Ocean

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dc.contributor.author Reisinger, Ryan R.
dc.contributor.author Raymond, Ben
dc.contributor.author Hindell, Mark A.
dc.contributor.author Bester, Marthan Nieuwoudt
dc.contributor.author Crawford, Robert J.M.
dc.contributor.author Davies, Delia
dc.contributor.author De Bruyn, P.J. Nico
dc.contributor.author Dilley, Ben J.
dc.contributor.author Kirkman, Stephen P.
dc.contributor.author Makhado, Azwianewi B.
dc.contributor.author Ryan, Peter G.
dc.contributor.author Schoombie, Stefan
dc.contributor.author Stevens, Kim
dc.contributor.author Sumner, Michael D.
dc.contributor.author Tosh, Cheryl A.
dc.contributor.author Wege, Mia
dc.contributor.author Whitehead, Thomas Otto
dc.contributor.author Wotherspoon, Simon
dc.contributor.author Pistorius, Pierre A.
dc.date.accessioned 2019-04-12T10:10:39Z
dc.date.available 2019-04-12T10:10:39Z
dc.date.issued 2018-04
dc.description.abstract AIM : The distribution of marine predators is driven by the distribution and abundance of their prey; areas preferred by multiple marine predator species should therefore indicate areas of ecological significance. The Southern Ocean supports large populations of seabirds and marine mammals and is undergoing rapid environmental change. The management and conservation of these predators and their environment relies on understanding their distribution and its link with the biophysical environment, as the latter determines the distribution and abundance of prey. We addressed this issue using tracking data from 14 species of marine predators to identify important habitat. LOCATION : Indian Ocean sector of the Southern Ocean. METHODS : We used tracking data from 538 tag deployments made over a decade at the Subantarctic Prince Edward Islands. For each real track, we simulated a set of pseudo‐tracks that allowed a presence‐availability habitat modelling approach that estimates an animal's habitat preference. Using model ensembles of boosted regression trees and random forests, we modelled these tracks as a response to a set of 17 environmental variables. We combined the resulting species‐specific models to evaluate areas of mean importance. RESULTS : Real tracking locations covered 39.75 million km2, up to 7,813 km from the Prince Edward Islands. Areas of high mean importance were located broadly from the Subtropical Zone to the Polar Frontal Zone in summer and from the Subantarctic to Antarctic Zones in winter. Areas of high mean importance were best predicted by factors including wind speed, sea surface temperature, depth and current speed. MAIN CONCLUSIONS : The models and predictions developed here identify important habitat of marine predators around the Prince Edward Islands and can support the large‐scale conservation and management of Subantarctic ecosystems and the marine predators they sustain. The results also form the basis of future efforts to predict the consequences of environmental change. en_ZA
dc.description.department Mammal Research Institute en_ZA
dc.description.department Zoology and Entomology en_ZA
dc.description.librarian hj2019 en_ZA
dc.description.sponsorship A National Research Foundation (NRF) SANCOR grant to R.R.R. (94916), NRF SANAP grants to M.N.B., R.J.M.C. (SNA103359), P.J.N.d.B., P.G.R. and P.A.P. (SNA2005060800001), and a Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR) Fellowship to R.R.R. en_ZA
dc.description.uri http://wileyonlinelibrary.com/journal/ddi en_ZA
dc.identifier.citation Reisinger RR, Raymond B, Hindell MA, et al. Habitat modelling of tracking data from multiple marine predators identifies important areas in the Southern Indian Ocean. Diversity and Distributions 2018;24:535–550. https://doi.org/10.1111/ddi.12702. en_ZA
dc.identifier.issn 1366-9516 (print)
dc.identifier.issn 1472-4642 (online)
dc.identifier.other 10.1111/ddi.12702
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/2263/68962
dc.language.iso en en_ZA
dc.publisher Wiley en_ZA
dc.rights © 2018 John Wiley & Sons Ltd. This is the pre-peer reviewed version of the following article : Habitat modelling of tracking data from multiple marine predators identifies important areas in the Southern Indian Ocean. Diversity and Distributions 2018;24:535–550. https://doi.org/10.1111/ddi.12702. The definite version is available at : http://wileyonlinelibrary.com/journal/ddi. en_ZA
dc.subject Seabirds en_ZA
dc.subject Marine protected areas en_ZA
dc.subject Marine mammals en_ZA
dc.subject Hotspots en_ZA
dc.subject Distribution models en_ZA
dc.subject Distribution en_ZA
dc.subject Areas of ecological significance en_ZA
dc.subject Southern Indian Ocean en_ZA
dc.title Habitat modelling of tracking data from multiple marine predators identifies important areas in the Southern Indian Ocean en_ZA
dc.type Postprint Article en_ZA


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