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New Harvard Forest Publication: Statistics of Rarity

June 1, 2005
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Ecologists deal with rarity in many guises - species can be rare, particular Ecology 2005 Coverinteractions may be uncommon, and catastrophic events that reshape landscapes are, by definition, infrequent. Although ecologists often seek out abundant species or events for their investigations out of convenience, rare species are often of special central concern to conservation biologists, reserve managers, and legislators, and historical legacies of rare events are pervasive in ecosystems. The standard set of statistical tools used by the majority of ecologists are difficult or inappropriate to use when analyzing rare species or events, either because assumptions such as normality or homoscedasticity do not hold, or because the required sample sizes are impossibly large. The papers published in this Special Feature present a cross-section of techniques for sampling, quantifying, and modeling rarity, and include studies of plants, animals, and infrequent disturbances in the paleo- and recent records.

The Statistics of Rarity- a collection of 8 articles edited by Harvard Forest Senior Ecologist Aaron Ellison and Cornell's Anurag Agrawal. Ecology 86: 1079-1163.

Entire collection of 8 articles. 

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