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Abstract Detail

Bryological and Lichenological Section/ABLS

Shrestha, Gajendra [1], Leavitt, Steven D. [2], St. Clair, Larry L. [3].

Predicting the Distribution of Air Pollution Sensitive Lichen Usnea hirta Using Habitat Niche Modeling.

Usnea hirta is a member of the lichen family Parmeliaceae; and has long been used in air-pollution bio-monitoring programs throughout the Intermountain western United States. Although U. hirta has a wide geographical distribution, it is important to be able to precisely identify suitable habitats in order to effectively and efficiently establish air quality bio-monitoring programs. Detailed floristic surveys of multiple areas are time consuming and expensive. Therefore, we have used Non-Parametric Multiplicative Regression (NPMR) analysis to predict the distribution of U. hirta in the Flat Tops Wilderness Area of the White River National Forest, Colorado. NPMR is a flexible system used to identify the best subset of predictor variables for determining distribution of species. Our model was evaluated on the basis of the log β value. We measured the distribution of U. hirta as a function of 9 macroclimatic and topographic variables. The best model included four variables - solar radiation, average monthly minimum temperature, average monthly maximum temperature, and average monthly precipitation (log β = 3.68). Among the four variables, average monthly maximum temperature was relatively more important as a predictor in this model (sensitivity = 0.71 and tolerance = 2.04). The GIS probability map for U. hirta shows lower probability areas in the central portion of the Wilderness (generally higher elevation locations); whereas the periphery of the wilderness area and adjacent portions in the White River National Forest show higher probability areas. The probability map for U. hirta will be field verified during the summer of 2010.

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1 - Brigham Young University, Department of Biology and M.L. Bean Life Science Museum, 193 M.L. Bean Life Science Museum, Provo, Utah, 84602, USA
2 - Brigham Young University, Department of Biology and M.L. Life Science Museum , 401 WIDB Brigham Young University , Provo, Utah, 84602, USA
3 - Brigham Young University, Biology Department and M.L. Bean Life Science Museum, 290 M.L. Bean Life Science Museum, Provo, Utah, 84602, USA

Usnea hirta
Air quality Bio-monitoring
Flat Tops Wilderness Area.

Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Sections
Session: 40
Location: 554A/Convention Center
Date: Tuesday, August 3rd, 2010
Time: 1:45 PM
Number: 40002
Abstract ID:189

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