Experimentally testing the accuracy of an extinction estimator: Solow's optimal linear estimation model

2.50
Hdl Handle:
http://hdl.handle.net/10547/301908
Title:
Experimentally testing the accuracy of an extinction estimator: Solow's optimal linear estimation model
Authors:
Clements, Christopher F.; Worsfold, Nicholas T.; Warren, Philip H.; Collen, Ben; Clark, Nick; Blackburn, Tim M.; Petchey, Owen L.; Butler, Simon
Abstract:
Mathematical methods for inferring time to extinction have been widely applied but poorly tested. Optimal linear estimation (also called the 'Weibull' or 'Weibull extreme value' model) infers time to extinction from a temporal distribution of species sightings. Previous studies have suggested optimal linear estimation provides accurate estimates of extinction time for some species; however, an in-depth test of the technique is lacking. The use of data from wild populations to gauge the error associated with estimations is often limited by very approximate estimates of the actual extinction date and poor sighting records. Microcosms provide a system in which the accuracy of estimations can be tested against known extinction dates, whilst incorporating a variety of extinction rates created by changing environmental conditions, species identity and species richness. We present the first use of experimental microcosm data to exhaustively test the accuracy of one sighting-based method of inferring time of extinction under a range of search efforts, search regimes, sighting frequencies and extinction rates. Our results show that the accuracy of optimal linear estimation can be affected by both observer-controlled parameters, such as change in search effort, and inherent features of the system, such as species identity. Whilst optimal linear estimation provides generally accurate and precise estimates, the technique is susceptible to both overestimation and underestimation of extinction date. Microcosm experiments provide a framework within which the accuracy of extinction predictors can be clearly gauged. Variables such as search effort, search regularity and species identity can significantly affect the accuracy of estimates and should be taken into account when testing extinction predictors in the future.
Affiliation:
University of Sheffield; University of York; Institute of Zoology, ZSL; King Saud University, Saudi Arabia; University of Zurich
Citation:
Clements, C.F., Worsfold, N.T., Warren., P.H. et al. (2013) 'Experimentally testing the accuracy of an extinction estimator: Solow's optimal linear estimation model', Journal of Animal Ecology, 82(2), pp.345-354
Publisher:
Wiley Blackwell
Journal:
Journal of Animal Ecology
Issue Date:
2013
URI:
http://hdl.handle.net/10547/301908
DOI:
10.1111/1365-2656.12005
Additional Links:
http://doi.wiley.com/10.1111/1365-2656.12005
Type:
Article
Language:
en
ISSN:
0021-8790
Sponsors:
Natural Environment Research Council; Zoological Society of London; Rufford Foundation
Appears in Collections:
Environmental Monitoring Research Group

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.contributor.authorClements, Christopher F.en_GB
dc.contributor.authorWorsfold, Nicholas T.en_GB
dc.contributor.authorWarren, Philip H.en_GB
dc.contributor.authorCollen, Benen_GB
dc.contributor.authorClark, Nicken_GB
dc.contributor.authorBlackburn, Tim M.en_GB
dc.contributor.authorPetchey, Owen L.en_GB
dc.contributor.authorButler, Simonen_GB
dc.date.accessioned2013-09-19T12:44:02Z-
dc.date.available2013-09-19T12:44:02Z-
dc.date.issued2013-
dc.identifier.citationClements, C.F., Worsfold, N.T., Warren., P.H. et al. (2013) 'Experimentally testing the accuracy of an extinction estimator: Solow's optimal linear estimation model', Journal of Animal Ecology, 82(2), pp.345-354en_GB
dc.identifier.issn0021-8790-
dc.identifier.doi10.1111/1365-2656.12005-
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10547/301908-
dc.description.abstractMathematical methods for inferring time to extinction have been widely applied but poorly tested. Optimal linear estimation (also called the 'Weibull' or 'Weibull extreme value' model) infers time to extinction from a temporal distribution of species sightings. Previous studies have suggested optimal linear estimation provides accurate estimates of extinction time for some species; however, an in-depth test of the technique is lacking. The use of data from wild populations to gauge the error associated with estimations is often limited by very approximate estimates of the actual extinction date and poor sighting records. Microcosms provide a system in which the accuracy of estimations can be tested against known extinction dates, whilst incorporating a variety of extinction rates created by changing environmental conditions, species identity and species richness. We present the first use of experimental microcosm data to exhaustively test the accuracy of one sighting-based method of inferring time of extinction under a range of search efforts, search regimes, sighting frequencies and extinction rates. Our results show that the accuracy of optimal linear estimation can be affected by both observer-controlled parameters, such as change in search effort, and inherent features of the system, such as species identity. Whilst optimal linear estimation provides generally accurate and precise estimates, the technique is susceptible to both overestimation and underestimation of extinction date. Microcosm experiments provide a framework within which the accuracy of extinction predictors can be clearly gauged. Variables such as search effort, search regularity and species identity can significantly affect the accuracy of estimates and should be taken into account when testing extinction predictors in the future.en_GB
dc.description.sponsorshipNatural Environment Research Council; Zoological Society of London; Rufford Foundationen_GB
dc.language.isoenen
dc.publisherWiley Blackwellen_GB
dc.relation.urlhttp://doi.wiley.com/10.1111/1365-2656.12005en_GB
dc.rightsArchived with thanks to Journal of Animal Ecologyen_GB
dc.subjectextinction estimationen_GB
dc.subjectoptimal linear estimationen_GB
dc.subjectprotist microcosmen_GB
dc.subjectSolow modelen_GB
dc.subjectWeibullen_GB
dc.titleExperimentally testing the accuracy of an extinction estimator: Solow's optimal linear estimation modelen
dc.typeArticleen
dc.contributor.departmentUniversity of Sheffielden_GB
dc.contributor.departmentUniversity of Yorken_GB
dc.contributor.departmentInstitute of Zoology, ZSLen_GB
dc.contributor.departmentKing Saud University, Saudi Arabiaen_GB
dc.contributor.departmentUniversity of Zurichen_GB
dc.identifier.journalJournal of Animal Ecologyen_GB
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