New publication: Hypervolume concepts in niche- and trait-based ecology

Last week we had a review paper come out surveying uses of hypervolume concepts across ecology and evolutionary biology. You can read it at Ecography, or get a PDF copy.

The manuscript explores how the n-dimensional hypervolume concept has been used since it was first proposed by G.E. Hutchinson (his fabulous illustration of squirrel niches in panel A above). The paper synthesizes modern applications of the concept in functional and community ecology (using trait axes) and in species distribution modeling (using climate axes).

It also provides a working guide to what types of hypervolume methods can be used for different analyses (as above), and develops a critical perspective on when hypervolume methods should and should not be used (as below). The latter set of analyses was placed in the online supplement but is well worth a look.

The manuscript arose from a submission for Ecography’s E4 award, but was mostly developed thanks to last year’s symposium in Salzburg, Austria, organized by Robert Junker.

With input from Arne Bathke, Jonas Kuppler, Manuela Schreyer, Carlos Perez Carmona, Francesco de Bello, and several others, we were able to refine ideas and come to some consensus in what has been a contentious field.

(photo credit R. Junker)

Please read the paper – I hope it will be useful for your research!

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