New scientific publication
Testing the Potential for Predictive Modeling and Mapping and Extending Its Use as a Tool for Evaluating Management Scenarios and Economic Valuation in the Baltic Sea (PREHAB)
We evaluated performance of species distribution models for predictive mapping, and how models can be used to integrate human pressures into ecological and economic assessments. A selection of 77 biological variables (species, groups of species, and measures of biodiversity) across the Baltic Sea were modeled. Differences among methods, areas, predictor, and response variables were evaluated. Several methods successfully predicted abundance and occurrence of vegetation, invertebrates, fish, and functional aspects of biodiversity. Depth and substrate were among the most important predictors. Models incorporating water clarity were used to predict increasing cover of the brown alga bladderwrack Fucus vesiculosus and increasing reproduction area of perch Perca fluviatilis, but decreasing reproduction areas for pikeperch Sander lucioperca following successful implementation of the Baltic Sea Action Plan. Despite variability in estimated non-market benefits among countries, such changes were highly valued by citizens in the three Baltic countries investigated. We conclude that predictive models are powerful and useful tools for science-based management of the Baltic Sea.
Lindegarth M., Bergström U., Mattila J., Olenin S., Ollikainen M., Downie A.-L., Sundblad G., Bučas M., Gullström M., Snickars M., Numers M., Svensson J. R., & Kosenius A.-K., 2014: Testing the Potential for Predictive Modeling and Mapping and Extending Its Use as a Tool for Evaluating Management Scenarios and Economic Valuation in the Baltic Sea (PREHAB), Ambio 43:82-93