Thanks to advances in electronic archiving of biodiversity data and the digitization of climate and other geophysical data, a new era in biogeography, functional ecology, and evolutionary ecology has begun. In Data Mining for Global Trends in Mountain Biodiversity, Christian Korner, Eva M. Spehn, and a team of experts from the Global Mountain Biodiversity Assessment of DIVERSITAS explore two of the hottest subjects in science and technology: biodiversity and data mining. They demonstrate how to harness the scientific power of biological databases for furthering ecological and evolutionary theory.
Expert contributors address two aspects of the Global Mountain Biodiversity Assessment. They cover how to link biodiversity data with geophysical data and how to use biodiversity data to substantiate evolutionary and ecological theory. The text provides different methodological approaches and examples of successful mining of geo-referenced data in mountain regions on various scales. It includes:
- Elevational and latitudinal gradients in plant diversity
- E-mining trends in diversity of Lepidoptera, beetles, and birds
- Niche modeling to explain past trends and predict future trends in mountain biodiversity
- Sharing biodiversity data with the Global Biodiversity Information Facility
Using electronic databases opens ways to manage biodiversity in a sustainable fashion, test evolutionary and ecological theories, and measure the impact of climate change on various species and its effect on conservation efforts. The information and examples presented in this book can stimulate the creative use of archive data to answer old questions with new tools, and advance knowledge and understanding of mountain biodiversity worldwide. The book highlights the benefits of and the continuing need for an increase in the amount and quality of georeferenced data provided online in order to meet the challenges of global change.
Table of Contents
Exploring and Explaining Mountain Biodiversity: The Role and Power of Geophysical Information Systems, C. Körner and J. Paulsen
Primary Biodiversity Data—The Foundation for Understanding Global Mountain Biodiversity, L. Speers
Using Primary Biodiversity Data in Mountain Species Numbers Assessments, J. Soberón M.
The Global Need for, and Appreciation of, High-Quality Metadata in Biodiversity Database Work, F. Huettmann
A Possible Correlation between the Altitudinal and Latitudinal Ranges of Species in the High Elevation Flora of the Andes, M.T. Kalin Arroyo, L.S. Dudley, P. Pliscoff, L.A. Cavieres, F.A. Squeo, C. Marticorena, and R. Rozzi
Exploring Patterns of Plant Diversity in China’s Mountains, J. Fang, X. Wang, Z. Tang, Z. Shen, and C. Zheng
Elevational Pattern of Seed Plant Species Richness in the Hengduan Mountains, Southwest China: Area and Climate, D.-C. Zhang and H. Sun
Elevational Gradients of Species Richness Derived from Local Field Surveys versus “Mining” of Archive Data, M. Kessler, T. Krömer, J. Kluge, D.N. Karger, A. Acebey, A. Hemp, S.K. Herzog, and M. Lehnert
Species Richness of Breeding Birds along the Altitudinal Gradient—An Analysis of Atlas Databases from Switzerland and Catalonia (NE Spain), N. Zbinden, M. Kéry, V. Keller, L. Brotons, S. Herrando, and H. Schmid
Diverse Elevational Diversity Gradients in Great Smoky Mountains National Park, U.S.A., N.J. Sanders, R.R. Dunn, M.C. Fitzpatrick, C.E. Carlton, M.R. Pogue, C.R. Parker, and T.R. Simons
Integrating Data across Biodiversity Levels: The Project IntraBioDiv, A. Tribsch, T. Englisch, F. Gugerli, R. Holderegger, H. Niklfeld, K. Steinmann, C. Thiel-Egenter, N.E. Zimmermann, P. Taberlet, and IntraBioDiv Consortium
A Plant Functional Traits Database for the Alps—Application to the Understanding of Functional Effects of Changed Grassland Management, S. Lavorel, S. Gachet, A. Sahl, M.-P. Colace, S. Gaucherand, M. Burylo, and R. Bonet
Using Species Occurrence Databases to Determine Niche Dynamics of Montane and Lowland Species since the Last Glacial Maximum, R. Guralnick and P.B. Pearman
A Georeferenced Biodiversity Databank for Evaluating the Impact of Climate Change in Southern Italy Mountains, R. Pizzolotto, M. Sapia, F. Rotondaro, S. Scalercio, and P. Brandmayr
Using Georeferenced Databases to Assess the Effect of Climate Change on Alpine Plant Species and Diversity, C.F. Randin, R. Engler, P.B. Pearman, P. Vittoz, and A. Guisan
The “Mountain Laboratory” of Nature— Largely Unexplored Mine of Information: Synthesis of the Book, E.M. Spehn and C. Körner
Creative Use of Mountain Biodiversity Databases: The Kazbegi Research Agenda of GMBA-DIVERSITAS, C. Körner, M. Donoghue, T. Fabbro, C. Häuser, D. Nogués-Bravo, M.T.K. Arroyo, J. Soberón M., L. Speers, E.M. Spehn, H. Sun, A. Tribsch, P. Tykarski, and N. Zbinden
"Overall, the book provides a rich resource of valuable information and stimulation for those who are willing to dig into the detail of the individual chapters, As a whole, it demonstrates well how data mining techniques ran complement, but not necessarily replace, expensive experiments, thus furthering ecological and evolutionary theory."
-- Spehn. Mountain Research and Development (MRD). August 2010, Vol 30, No. 3