Integrating occurrence and detectability patterns based on interview data: a case study for threatened mammals in Equatorial Guinea

Scientific Reports
By: , and 

Links

Abstract

Occurrence models that account for imperfect detection of species are increasingly used for estimating geographical range, for determining species-landscape relations and to prioritize conservation actions worldwide. In 2010, we conducted a large-scale survey in Río Muni, the mainland territory of Equatorial Guinea, which aimed to estimate the probabilities of occurrence and detection of threatened mammals based on environmental covariates, and to identify priority areas for conservation. Interviews with hunters were designed to record presence/absence data of seven species (golden cat, leopard, forest elephant, forest buffalo, western gorilla, chimpanzee and mandrill) in 225 sites throughout the region. We fitted single season occupancy models and recently developed models which also include false positive errors (i.e. species detected in places where it actually does not occur), which should provide more accurate estimates for most species, which are susceptible to mis-identification. Golden cat and leopard had the lowest occurrence rates in the region, whereas primates had the highest rates. All species, except gorilla, were affected negatively by human settlements. The southern half of Río Muni showed the highest occurrence of the species studied, and conservation strategies for ensuring the persistence of threatened mammals should be focused on this area.

Study Area

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Integrating occurrence and detectability patterns based on interview data: a case study for threatened mammals in Equatorial Guinea
Series title Scientific Reports
DOI 10.1038/srep33838
Volume 6
Year Published 2016
Language English
Publisher Nature Publishing Group
Contributing office(s) Patuxent Wildlife Research Center
Description 33838; 9 p.
Country Equatorial Guinea