Knowledge of predator diets provides essential insights into their ecology, yet diet estimation is challenging and remains an active area of research.
Quantitative fatty acid signature analysis (QFASA) is a popular method of estimating diet composition that continues to be investigated and extended. However, software to implement QFASA has only recently become publicly available.
I summarize a new R package,qfasar, for diet estimation using QFASA methods. The package also provides functionality to evaluate and potentially improve the performance of a library of prey signature data, compute goodness-of-fit diagnostics, and support simulation-based research. Several procedures in the package have not previously been published.
qfasarmakes traditional and recently published QFASA diet estimation methods accessible to ecologists for the first time. Use of the package is illustrated with signature data from Chukchi Sea polar bears and potential prey species.
Additional publication details
QFASAR: Quantitative fatty acid signature analysis with R