Faunal change is a basic and fundamental element in ecology, biogeography, and conservation biology, yet vanishingly few detailed studies have documented such changes rigorously over decadal time scales. This study responds to that gap in knowledge, providing a detailed analysis of Digital Accessible Knowledge of the birds of Mexico, designed to marshal DAK to identify sites that were sampled and inventoried rigorously prior to the beginning of major global climate change (1980).
We accumulated DAK records for Mexican birds from all relevant online biodiversity data portals. After extensive cleaning steps, we calculated completeness indices for each 0.05° pixel across the country; we also detected ‘hotspots’ of sampling, and calculated completeness indices for these broader areas as well. Sites were designated as well-sampled if they had completeness indices above 80% and >200 associated DAK records.
We identified 100 individual pixels and 20 broader ‘hotspots’ of sampling that were demonstrably well-inventoried prior to 1980. These sites are catalogued and documented to promote and enable resurvey efforts that can document events of avifaunal change (and non-change) across the country on decadal time scales.
Development of repeated surveys for many sites across Mexico, and particularly for sites for which historical surveys document their avifaunas prior to major climate change processes, would pay rich rewards in information about distributional dynamics of Mexican birds.
Digital Accessible Knowledge and well-inventoried sites for birds in Mexico: baseline sites for measuring faunistic change
A. Townsend Peterson, Adolfo G. Navarro-Sigüenza, Enrique Martínez-Meyer
PeerJ. 2016; 4: e2362. Published online 2016 Sep 7. doi: 10.7717/peerj.2362