OJE  Vol.2 No.2 , May 2012
Landscape spatial structure for predicting suitable habitat: The case of Dalea villosa in Saskatchewan
Abstract: Prediction of potentially suitable habitat is important for the recovery of species protected by federal laws. Therefore, the objective of this research was to study the relationship between habitat configuration and hairy prairie-clover occurrence in order to predict suitable and unsuitable bare sand habitat across the study site. Bare sand patches were extracted from a land cover classification of the study site and several patch scaled metrics were calculated to characterize habitat spatial structure. Binary logistic regression was used to determine which metrics were significantly correlated with hairy prairie-clover occurrences. The logistic regression equation was subsequently used to predict suitable and unsuitable bare sand habitat for hairy prairie-clover based on the probability of occupancy. Results showed that about 29% of the variation in bare sand patch occupancy could be explained by the size, shape, and degree of isolation of a sand patch as well as the amount of vegetation on a sand patch in the early growing season. Based on these variables, 18.8% of bare sand patches in the study site were predicted to be unsuitable hairy prairie-clover habitat, 45.7% were predicted to be marginally unsuitable, 32.7% were predicted to be suitable, and 2.8% were predicted to be marginally suitable.
Cite this paper: Lowe, S. , Guo, X. and Henderson, D. (2012) Landscape spatial structure for predicting suitable habitat: The case of Dalea villosa in Saskatchewan. Open Journal of Ecology, 2, 60-73. doi: 10.4236/oje.2012.22008.

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