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ARS Home » Plains Area » Fort Collins, Colorado » Center for Agricultural Resources Research » Agricultural Genetic Resources Preservation Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #375487

Research Project: Efficient and Effective Preservation and Management of Plant and Microbial Genetic Resource Collections

Location: Agricultural Genetic Resources Preservation Research

Title: GapAnalysis: an R package to calculate conservation indicators using spatial information

Author
item Carver Jr, Daniel
item SOSA, CHRYSTIAN - International Center For Tropical Agriculture (CIAT)
item Khoury, Colin
item ACHICANOY, HAROLD - International Center For Tropical Agriculture (CIAT)
item DIAZ, MARIA VICTORIA - International Center For Tropical Agriculture (CIAT)
item SOTELO, STEVEN - International Center For Tropical Agriculture (CIAT)
item CASTAÑEDA-ÁLVAREZ, NORA - Natureserve
item RAMIREZ-VILLEGAS, JULIAN - International Center For Tropical Agriculture (CIAT)

Submitted to: Ecography
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/6/2021
Publication Date: 5/4/2021
Citation: Carver Jr, D.P., Sosa, C., Khoury, C.K., Achicanoy, H., Diaz, M., Sotelo, S., Castañeda-Álvarez, N., Ramirez-Villegas, J. 2021. GapAnalysis: an R package to calculate conservation indicators using spatial information. Ecography. https://doi.org/10.1111/ecog.05430.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/ecog.05430

Interpretive Summary: This article describes GapAnalysis, an open source R package developed to support the assessment of the degree of conservation of species, both in genebanks and botanical gardens (ex situ) and in protected natural areas (in situ), and to identify gaps in their conservation. The eco-geographic variation conserved ex situ and present within protected natural areas is compared with the full extent of eco-geographic variation predicted within the species’ overall native range. Eco-geographic conservation gaps are then identified, and taxa are prioritized for further action. The package enables users to quickly determine conservation status and priorities for as few as one to as many as thousands of taxa, for any wild flora or fauna for which occurrence data and species distribution models are available.

Technical Abstract: Effective assessments of the current status of biodiversity conservation are needed to support conservation planning,policy, and action, from local to global levels. Of particular use would be well documented, reproducible methods based on openly accessible data and tools. Such methods should provide an accurate estimation of the degree of conservation of genetic diversity, identifying gaps in current conservation systems, while providing a benchmark against which to measure success, including determining when conservation goals have been met. Here we introduce GapAnalysis,an open source R package developed to support the assessment of the degree of conservation of taxa in conservation systems, both in genebanks and botanical gardens (ex situ) and in protected natural areas (in situ), and to identify gaps in their conservation, based on eco-geographic methods and tools. The eco-geographic variation conserved ex situ and present within protected natural areas is compared with the full extent of eco-geographic variation predicted within the species’ overall native range. Eco-geographic conservation gaps are then identified, and taxa are prioritized for further action. The package enables users to quickly determine conservation status and priorities for as few as one to as many as thousands of taxa, for any wild flora or fauna for which occurrence data and species distribution models are available. To demonstrate the use of GapAnalysis, we provide a case study and tutorial for three wild plant species in the genus Cucurbita L.