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Bio-ORACLE: a global environmental dataset for marine species distribution modeling
Tyberghein, L.; Verbruggen, H.; Pauly, K.; Troupin, C.; Mineur, F.; De Clerck, O. (2012). Bio-ORACLE: a global environmental dataset for marine species distribution modeling, in: Tyberghein, L. Evolution, diversity and niche dynamics of seaweeds. pp. 14-43
In: Tyberghein, L. (2012). Evolution, diversity and niche dynamics of seaweeds. PhD Thesis. Universiteit Gent, Faculty of Sciences, Phycology Research Group: Gent. 185 pp., more

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Document type: Dissertation

Keyword
    Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Troupin, C., more
  • Mineur, F.
  • De Clerck, O., more

Abstract
    The oceans harbor a great diversity of organisms whose distribution and ecological preferences are often poorly understood. Species distribution modeling (SDM) could improve our knowledge and inform marine ecosystem management and conservation. Although marine environmental data are available from various sources, there are currently no user-friendly, high-resolution global datasets designed for SDM applications. This study aims to ?ll this gap by assembling a comprehensive, uniform, high-resolution and readily usable package of global environmental rasters. We compiled global coverage data, e.g. satellite-based and in situ measured data, representing various aspects of the marine environment relevant for species distributions. Rasters were assembled at a resolution of 5 arcmin (c. 9.2 km) and a uniform landmask was applied. The utility of the dataset was evaluated by maximum entropy SDM of the invasive seaweed Codium fragile ssp. fragile. We present Bio-ORACLE (ocean rasters for analysis of climate and environment), a global dataset consisting of 23 geophysical, biotic and climate rasters. This user-friendly data package for marine species distribution modeling is available for download at http://www.bio-oracle.ugent.be. The high predictive power of the distribution model of C. fragile ssp. fragile clearly illustrates the potential of the data package for SDM of shallow-water marine organisms. The availability of this global environmental data package has the potential to stimulate marine SDM. The high predictive success of the presence-only model of a notorious invasive seaweed shows that the information contained in Bio-ORACLE can be informative about marine distributions and permits building highly accurate species distribution models.

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