MARTIN Gabriel Mario
Climatic constraints and the distribution of Patagonian mice
RUIZ BARLETT, TRINIDAD; MARTIN, GABRIEL M; LAGUNA, MARÍA FABIANA; ABRAMSON, GUILLERMO; MONJEAU, ADRIÁN
JOURNAL OF MAMMALOGY
ALLIANCE COMMUNICATIONS GROUP DIVISION ALLEN PRESS
Lugar: Lawrence; Año: 2019
We generated potential distribution models for 14 sigmodontine rodent species that inhabit the Andean?Patagonian forest region and adjacent areas, and retrieved the main climatic variables responsible for these models. Our main objective was to compare these climatic variables and the distribution patterns generated for each species, and explore the effects of the physical environment in shaping the composition of rodent communities in the area. We retrieved a total of 1,215 records of species presence from 580 sites. Maxent was used to generate potential distribution models for the 14 rodent species studied. We used a total of 20 variables obtained from the WorldClim database, including elevation and 19 bioclimatic variables, in addition to normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) and enhanced vegetation index (EVI). Our results showed a clear discrimination between two groups of rodents, one concentrated in the western part of our study area, with more humid climate and a rugged mountainous and discontinuous habitat, and another inhabiting the eastern, drier part of our study area, which appears to be more uniform in habitat characteristics. These groups showed a mosaic of phylogenetically non-related species from different tribes, that probably arrived or expanded into Patagonia during the last millennia. The overlap of all models showed the forest-steppe ecotone east of Nahuel Huapi Lake and south to −43° latitude as the area with the highest species richness (8?11 species). All species showed a high correspondence with temperature and precipitation that define patterns at a landscape scale, with little to very little information contained in the typical vegetation variables that would define local conditions.