Macroecological research in Conservation

Most of the data needed conservation planning and forecasting are limited and need to be estimated according to ecological rules. Understanding macroecological patterns can contribute to conservation providing good approximations when data are lacking. We are currently interested in aspect such as species dispersal abilities, species spatial needs, and ecological correlates distribution range. In order to infer population structure from habitat suitability models, we are widely using allometric scaling to predict unknown variables from more easy recordable data. We have applied allometry to predict dispersal distance in mammals (Fig. 1), species intrinsic characteristics of population dynamics and spatial needs. Additionally, we are currently investigating intrinsic and extrinsic factors affecting species distribution range (Fig. 2), their understanding is in fact critical in future range forecasting.

Fig. 1 Allometric relationship between dispersal distance and home range (Source Santini et al. 2014).

gma_web_picFig. 2 Mean values of geographic range size in terrestrial mammals. The map represents, for each 10x10km grid cell, the mean range size value calculated across all species occurring in the cell (Source Di Marco & Santini 2014).