Hidden Markov model for dependent mark loss and survival estimation

Journal of Agricultural, Biological, and Environmental Statistics
By: , and 

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Abstract

Mark-recapture estimators assume no loss of marks to provide unbiased estimates of population parameters. We describe a hidden Markov model (HMM) framework that integrates a mark loss model with a Cormack–Jolly–Seber model for survival estimation. Mark loss can be estimated with single-marked animals as long as a sub-sample of animals has a permanent mark. Double-marking provides an estimate of mark loss assuming independence but dependence can be modeled with a permanently marked sub-sample. We use a log-linear approach to include covariates for mark loss and dependence which is more flexible than existing published methods for integrated models. The HMM approach is demonstrated with a dataset of black bears (Ursus americanus) with two ear tags and a subset of which were permanently marked with tattoos. The data were analyzed with and without the tattoo. Dropping the tattoos resulted in estimates of survival that were reduced by 0.005–0.035 due to tag loss dependence that could not be modeled. We also analyzed the data with and without the tattoo using a single tag. By not using.

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Hidden Markov model for dependent mark loss and survival estimation
Series title Journal of Agricultural, Biological, and Environmental Statistics
DOI 10.1007/s13253-014-0190-1
Volume 19
Issue 4
Year Published 2014
Language English
Publisher Springer
Contributing office(s) Coop Res Unit Leetown
Description 17 p.
First page 522
Last page 538