Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Austin 2002 Species Distribution
Scientists are starting to use geographic information systems (GIS) to track growth and extent of plant life in a specific area. This information can be used to understand and predict the trends in certain species of plants. They can visually see growth, decline, or migrations that might be occurring and use that information to get a general idea of how a species is competing.

In order to get a good understanding of the environment there are three models of information that need to be taken into account, the ecological model, a data model, and a statistical model. The ecological data is information that can be taken from the field and tested to find results. The data model is the numerical value of the ecological findings and the statistical model measures the level of error and determines the significance. We can now see trends and find possible reasons for a change in a species and natural ecosystem of this specific area. Discrepancies between process model and statistical model will demonstrate our lack of knowledge and may also indicate the way forward. Different environmental factors affect specific areas differently.

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