Uses of GBIF in scientific research

Peer-reviewed research citing GBIF as a data source, with at least one author from Sweden.
Extracted from the Mendeley GBIF Public Library.

List of publications

  • Edler D, Guedes T, Zizka A, Rosvall M, Antonelli A (2015)

    Infomap Bioregions: Interactive mapping of biogeographical regions from species distributions


    Biogeographical regions reveal how species are spatially grouped and therefore are important units for conservation, historical biogeography, ecology and evolution. Several methods have been developed to identify bioregions based on species distribution data rather than expert opinion. One approach successfully applies network theory to simplify and highlight the underlying structure in species distributions data. However, there are no tools that make this methodology simple and efficient to use. Here we present Infomap Bioregions, an interactive web application that inputs species distribution data and generates bioregion maps. Species distributions may be provided as georeferenced point occurrences or range maps, and can be of local, regional or global scale. The application uses a novel adaptive resolution method to make best use of often incomplete species distribution data. The results can be downloaded as vector graphics, shapefiles or in table format. We validate the tool by processing large datasets of publicly available species distribution data of the world's amphibians using species ranges, and mammals using point occurrences. Potential applications include ancestral range reconstructions in historical biogeography and identification of indicator species for targeted conservation.

  • Fuentes-Hurtado M, Hof A, Jansson R (2015)

    Paleodistribution modeling suggests glacial refugia in Scandinavia and out-of-Tibet range expansion of the Arctic fox

    Ecology and Evolution.

    Quaternary glacial cycles have shaped the geographic distributions and evolution of numerous species in the Arctic. Ancient DNA suggests that the Arctic fox went extinct in Europe at the end of the Pleistocene and that Scandinavia was subsequently recolonized from Siberia, indicating inability to track its habitat through space as climate changed. Using ecological niche modeling, we found that climatically suitable conditions for Arctic fox were found in Scandinavia both during the last glacial maximum (LGM) and the mid-Holocene. Our results are supported by fossil occurrences from the last glacial. Furthermore, the model projection for the LGM, validated with fossil records, suggested an approximate distance of 2000 km between suitable Arctic conditions and the Tibetan Plateau well within the dispersal distance of the species, supporting the recently proposed hypothesis of range expansion from an origin on the Tibetan Plateau to the rest of Eurasia. The fact that the Arctic fox disappeared from Scandinavia despite suitable conditions suggests that extant populations may be more sensitive to climate change than previously thought.

    Keywords: Arctic fox, Fennoscandia, Out-of-Tibet hypothesis, ecological niche modeling, last glacial maximum, refugia

  • Gough L, Sverdrup-Thygeson A, Milberg P, Pilskog H, Jansson N, Jonsell M et al. (2015)

    Specialists in ancient trees are more affected by climate than generalists

    Ecology and Evolution.

    Ancient trees are considered one of the most important habitats for biodiversity in Europe and North America. They support exceptional numbers of specialized species, including a range of rare and endangered wood-living insects. In this study, we use a dataset of 105 sites spanning a climatic gradient along the oak range of Norway and Sweden to investigate the importance of temperature and precipitation on beetle species richness in ancient, hollow oak trees. We expected that increased summer temperature would positively influence all wood-living beetle species whereas precipitation would be less important with a negligible or negative impact. Surprisingly, only oak-specialist beetles with a northern distribution increased in species richness with temperature. Few specialist beetles and no generalist beetles responded to the rise of 4°C in summer as covered by our climatic gradient. The negative effect of precipitation affected more specialist species than did temperature, whereas the generalists remained unaffected. In summary, we suggest that increased summer temperature is likely to benefit a few specialist beetles within this dead wood community, but a larger number of specialists are likely to decline due to increased precipitation. In addition, generalist species will remain unaffected. To minimize adverse impacts of climate change on this important community, long-term management plans for ancient trees are important.

    Keywords: Beetles, climate gradient, coleoptera, precipitation, saproxylic, temperature

  • Hof A, Svahlin A (2015)

    The potential effect of climate change on the geographical distribution of insect pest species in the Swedish boreal forest

    Scandinavian Journal of Forest Research 1-11.

    ABSTRACTWith the expected rising temperatures, outbreaks of insect pests may be more frequent, which can have large consequences on forest ecosystems and may therefore negatively affect the forestry sector. In order to be better able to predict where, but not if, outbreaks may occur in future we investigated the potential future (2070) geographical distribution of 30 prospective insect pest species (Coleoptera and Lepidoptera) by applying species distribution modelling. We also assessed the geographical extent to which the boreal forest in Sweden may be affected. We found that numerous species may experience large increases in their potential distribution in future, which may result in outbreaks in “new” areas. It is therefore likely that more trees will be infested by pests in future, which may have large implications for the Swedish forestry sector.

    Keywords: Norway spruce, Scots pine, climate change, forestry, insects, pests, species distribution modelling

  • Kullander S, Rahman M, Norén M, Mollah A (2015)

    Why is Pseudosphromenus cupanus (Teleostei: Osphronemidae) reported from Bangladesh, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, and Pakistan?

    Zootaxa 3990(4) 575-83.

    The native distribution of the small labyrinth fish species Pseudosphromenus cupanus includes southern India and Sri Lanka. According to literature it has a range including also Pakistan, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Malaysia, and Indonesia (Sumatra) but there are no voucher specimens or reliable observations from those areas. The distribution record of P. cupanus was inflated partly by including P. dayi as a synonym. Pseudosphronemus dayi is native to the Western Ghats in India, but the origin of the aquarium importation in 1907 was reported as both Cochin (=Kochi) and Malacca (=Malaysia), the latter locality obviously in error. The basis for the Sumatra record is an obviously mislabeled sample of P. dayi from Pulau Weh close to Sumatra. The basis for reporting the species from Pakistan, Myanmar or Bangladesh could not be located. Misidentified museum specimens from Myanmar and Pakistan identified as P. cupanus were never published on. Pseudosphromenus cupanus has been considered recently to be extinct in Bangladesh, but in fact it never occurred there.

    Keywords: Asia, Freshwater, Geographical distribution, Threat status

  • Lancaster L, Dudaniec R, Hansson B, Svensson E (2015)

    Latitudinal shift in thermal niche breadth results from thermal release during a climate-mediated range expansion

    Journal of Biogeography 42(10).

    Aim Climate change is currently altering the geographical distribution of species, but how this process contributes to biogeographical variation in ecological traits is unknown. Range-shifting species are predicted to encounter and respond to new selective regimes during their expansion phase, but also carry historical adaptations to their ancestral range. We sought to identify how historical and novel components of the environment interact to shape latitudinal trends in thermal tolerance, thermal tolerance breadth and phenotypic plasticity of a range-shifting species. Location Southern and central Sweden. Methods To evaluate phenotypic responses to changes in the thermal selective environment, we experimentally determined the upper and lower thermal tolerances of > 2000 wild-caught damselflies (Ischnura elegans) from populations distributed across core and expanding range-edge regions. We then identified changing correlations between thermal tolerance, climate and recent weather events across the range expansion. Niche modelling was employed to evaluate the relative contributions of varying climatic selective regimes to overall habitat suitability for the species in core versus range-edge regions. Results Upper thermal tolerance exhibited local adaptation to climate in the core region, but showed evidence of having been released from thermal selection during the current range expansion. In contrast, chill coma recovery exhibited local adaptation across the core region and range expansion, corresponding to increased climatic variability at higher latitudes. Adaptive plasticity of lower thermal tolerances (acclimation ability) increased towards the northern, expanding range edge. Main conclusions Our results suggest micro-evolutionary mechanisms for several large-scale and general biogeographical patterns, including spatially and latitudinally invariant heat tolerances (Brett's rule) and increased thermal acclimation rates and niche breadths at higher latitudes. Population-level processes unique to climate-mediated range expansions may commonly underpin many broader, macro-physiological trends.

    Keywords: Character release, Ischnura elegans, Maxent, Sweden, colonization and range shifts, habitat suitability, insect invasions, macroecology, species distribution model, thermotolerance

  • Leidenberger S, Obst M, Kulawik R, Stelzer K, Heyer K, Hardisty A et al. (2015)

    Evaluating the potential of ecological niche modelling as a component in marine non-indigenous species risk assessments.

    Marine pollution bulletin 97(1-2) 470-87.

    Marine biological invasions have increased with the development of global trading, causing the homogenization of communities and the decline of biodiversity. A main vector is ballast water exchange from shipping. This study evaluates the use of ecological niche modelling (ENM) to predict the spread of 18 non-indigenous species (NIS) along shipping routes and their potential habitat suitability (hot/cold spots) in the Baltic Sea and Northeast Atlantic. Results show that, contrary to current risk assessment methods, temperature and sea ice concentration determine habitat suitability for 61% of species, rather than salinity (11%). We show high habitat suitability for NIS in the Skagerrak and Kattegat, a transitional area for NIS entering or leaving the Baltic Sea. As many cases of NIS introduction in the marine environment are associated with shipping pathways, we explore how ENM can be used to provide valuable information on the potential spread of NIS for ballast water risk assessment.

    Keywords: Ballast water, Ecological niche modelling, Non-indigenous species, Risk assessment, Shipping routes, Species distribution

  • Li X, Dong F, Lei F, Alström P, Zhang R, Ödeen A et al. (2015)

    Shaped by uneven Pleistocene climate: mitochondrial phylogeographic pattern and population history of White Wagtail Motacilla alba (Aves: Passeriformes)

    Journal of Avian Biology.

    We studied the phylogeography and population history of the White Wagtail Motacilla alba, which has a vast breeding range, covering areas with different Pleistocene climatic histories. The mitochondrial NADH dehydrogenase subunit II gene (ND2) and Control Region (CR) were analyzed for 273 individuals from 45 localities. Our data comprised all nine subspecies of White Wagtail. Four primary clades were inferred (M, N, SW and SE), with indications of M. grandis being nested within M. alba. The oldest split was between two haplotypes from the endemic Moroccan M. a. subpersonata (clade M) and the others, at 0.63–0.96 Mya; other divergences were at 0.31–0.38 Mya. The entire differentiation falls within the part of the Pleistocene characterized by Milankovitch cycles of large amplitudes and durations. Clade N was distributed across the northern Palearctic; clade SW in southwestern Asia plus the British Isles and was predicted by Ecological niche models (ENMs) to occur also in Central and South Europe; and clade SE was distributed in Central and East Asia. The deep divergence within M. a. subpersonata may reflect retention of ancestral haplotypes. Regional differences in historical climates have had different impacts on different populations: clade N expanded after the last glacial maximum (LGM), whereas milder Pleistocene climate of East Asia allowed clade SE a longer expansion time (since MIS 5); clade SW expanded over a similarly long time as clade SE, which is untypical for European species. ENMs supported these conclusions in that the northern part of the Eurasian continent was unsuitable during the LGM, whereas southern parts remained suitable. The recent divergences and poor structure in the mitochondrial tree contrasts strongly with the pronounced, well defined phenotypical differentiation, indicating extremely fast plumage divergence.

    Keywords: Ballast water, Ecological niche modelling, Non-indigenous species, Risk assessment, Shipping routes, Species distribution

  • Pironon S, Villellas J, Morris W, Doak D, García M (2015)

    Do geographic, climatic or historical ranges differentiate the performance of central versus peripheral populations?

    Global Ecology and Biogeography n/a-n/a.

    Aim The ‘centre–periphery hypothesis’ (CPH) predicts that species performance (genetics, physiology, morphology, demography) will decline gradually from the centre towards the periphery of the geographic range. This hypothesis has been subjected to continuous debate since the 1980s, essentially because empirical studies have shown contrasting patterns. Moreover, it has been proposed that species performance might not be higher at the geographic range centre but rather at the environmental optimum or at sites presenting greater environmental stability in time. In this paper we re-evaluate the CPH by disentangling the effects of geographic, climatic and historical centrality/marginality on the demography of three widely distributed plant species and the genetic diversity of one of them. Location Europe and North America. Methods Based on a species distribution modelling approach, we test whether demographic parameters (vital rates, stochastic population growth rates, density) of three plant species of contrasting life-forms, and the genetic diversity of one of them, are higher at their geographic range centres, climatic optima or projected glacial refugia. Results While geographic, climatic and historical centre–periphery gradients are often not concordant, overall, none of them explain well the distribution of species demographic performance, whereas genetic diversity responds positively only to a historical centrality, related to post-glacial range dynamics. Main conclusions To our knowledge, this is the first assessment of the response of species performance to three centrality gradients, considering all the components of different species life cycles and genetic diversity information across continental distributions. Our results are inconsistent with the idea that geographically, climatically or historically marginal populations generally perform worse than central ones. We particularly emphasize the importance of adopting an interdisciplinary approach in order to understand the relative effects of contemporary versus historical and geographic versus ecological factors on the distribution of species performance.

    Keywords: Abundant-centre model, Last Glacial Maximum, central–marginal hypothesis, climatic niche, genetic diversity, latitude, plant demography, population performance, species distribution models

  • Schwallier R, Raes N, de Boer H, Vos R, van Vugt R, Gravendeel B (2015)

    Phylogenetic analysis of niche divergence reveals distinct evolutionary histories and climate change implications for tropical carnivorous pitcher plants

    Diversity and Distributions n/a-n/a.

    Aim To analyse the underpinnings of historical drivers of diversity and their contributions to current distributions and future roles in a changing climate, we studied the relationship between ecological niche divergence and phylogenetic signal in tropical carnivorous pitcher plants. Location Southeast Asia. Methods Estimates of realized ecological niches were reconstructed and plotted along a newly created multilocus molecular phylogeny. Phylogenetic signal was analysed by comparisons of calculated phylogenetic relatedness with ecological niche divergence. Current and projected future potentially suitable habitats were mapped for several species of plants with variable evolutionary histories and distributions. Results Highland and lowland species had distinct phylogenetic signals. Higher altitude species had significantly lower molecular divergence as compared with the lowland species, yet ecological niches with less overlap. When projected onto a future climate scenario, highland species lose a greater amount of potentially suitable habitat compared to lower altitude species, and the majority of studied higher altitude species will face an overall loss of future suitable habitat. Main conclusion We conclude that distinct phylogenetic signals not only unravel differing evolutionary histories but also show that the implications of species' tolerances to future changing climate vary. Over the past million years, historical climate change shaped the differing evolution and ecological niches of highland and lowland tropical pitcher plant species. Rapid, recent radiations of the higher altitude species are reflected in limited molecular divergence, which is in sharp contrast with the more gradually evolved and genetically distinct lower altitude species in our study. Our projections for future potentially suitable habitats show that on-going climate shifts will have detrimental effects on especially the higher altitude species due to a narrower niche tolerance and dramatic loss of potentially suitable habitat.

    Keywords: Nepenthes, climate change, ecological niche modelling, molecular divergence, niche divergence, phylogenetic signal