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SEEC annual reports

Every year SEEC publishes a report outlining the achievements and activities of the group for that year. Below are all of our previous reports:




Peer-reviewed publications


Aiello-Lammens, M.E., Slingsby, J.A., Merow, C., Mollmann, H.K., Euston-Brown, D., Jones, C.S., Silander, J.A., 2017. Processes of community assembly in an environmentally heterogeneous, high biodiversity region. Ecography 40, 561–576. doi:10.1111/ecog.01945

Altwegg, R., Visser, V., Bailey, L.D., Erni, B., 2017. Learning from single extreme events. Phil. Trans. R. Soc. B 372, 20160141. doi:10.1098/rstb.2016.0141

Barnard, P., Altwegg, R., Ibrahim, I., Underhill, L.G., 2017. Early warning systems for biodiversity in southern Africa - how much can citizen science mitigate imperfect data. Biological Conservation, In press. doi:10.1016/j.biocon.2016.09.011

Barnard, P., Altwegg, R., Ibrahim, I., Underhill, L.G., 2017. Early warning systems for biodiversity in southern Africa - how much can citizen science mitigate imperfect data. Biological Conservation 208, 183–188. doi:10.1016/j.biocon.2016.09.011

Borchers, D.L., Marques, T.A., 2017. From distance sampling to spatial capture–recapture. AStA Advances in Statistical Analysis 1–20. doi:10.1007/s10182-016-0287-7

Canavan, S., Richardson, D., Visser, V., Le Roux, J., Vorontsova, M., Wilson, J., 2017. The global distribution of bamboos: assessing correlates of introduction and invasion. AoB PLANTS 9, plw078. doi:10.1093/aobpla/plw078

Cowling, R.M., Bradshaw, P.L., Colville, J.F., Forest, F., 2017. Levyns’ Law: explaining the evolution of a remarkable longitudinal gradient in Cape plant diversity. Transactions of the Royal Society of South Africa 72, 184–201. doi:10.1080/0035919X.2016.1274277

Cumming, G.S., Henry, D.A., Reynolds, C., 2017. A framework for testing assumptions about foraging scales, body mass, and niche separation using telemetry data. Ecology and Evolution Early View. doi:10.1002/ece3.3078

Durbach, I., Merven, B., McCall, B., 2017. Expert elicitation of autocorrelated time series with application to e3 (energy-environment-economic) forecasting models. Environmental Software & Modelling 88, 93–105. doi:10.1016/j.envsoft.2016.11.007

Fernández-Llamazares, Á., Garcia, R.A., Díaz-Reviriego, I., Cabeza, M., Pyhälä, A., Reyes-García, V., 2017. An empirically tested overlap between indigenous and scientific knowledge of a changing climate in Bolivian Amazonia. Regional Environmental Change, In press. doi:10.1007/s10113-017-1125-5

Froese, R., Demirel, N., Coro, G., Kleisner, K.M., Winker, H., 2017. Estimating fisheries reference points from catch and resilience. Fish and Fisheries 18, 506–526. doi:10.1111/faf.12190

Lee, A., Altwegg, R., Barnard, P., 2017. Estimating conservation metrics from atlas data: the case of southern African endemic birds. Bird Conservation International, In press. doi:10.1017/S0959270916000307

Leos-Barajas, V., Photopoulou, T., Langrock, R., Patterson, T.A., Watanabe, Y.Y., Murgatroyd, M., Papastamatiou, Y.P., 2017. Analysis of animal accelerometer data using hidden Markov models. Methods in Ecology and Evolution 8, 161–173. doi:10.1111/2041-210X.12657

Lockerbie, E., Coll, M., Shannon, L., Jarre, A., 2017. The use of indicators for decision support in northwestern Mediterranean Sea fisheries. Journal of Marine Systems 174, 64–77. doi:10.1016/j.jmarsys.2017.04.003

Maphisa, D.H., Smit-Robinson, H., Underhill, L.G., Altwegg, R., 2017. Management factors affecting densities of common grassland birds of high elevation grasslands of eastern South Africa: Ingula as a case study. Avian Research 8, 5. doi:10.1186/s40657-017-0063-8

Marques, T.A., Thomas, L., Kéry, M., Buckland, S.T., Borchers, D.L., Rexstad, E., Fewster, R.M., MacKenzie, D.I., Royle, J.A., Guillera-Arroita, G., Handel, Colleen M., Pavlacky Jr., David C., Camp, Richard J., 2017. Model-based approaches to deal with detectability: a comment on Hutto (2016). Ecological Applications. doi:10.1002/eap.1553

Measey, J., Stevenson, B., Scott, T., Altwegg, R., Borchers, D., 2017. Counting chirps: acoustic monitoring of cryptic frogs. Journal of Applied Ecology 54, 894–902. doi:10.1111/1365-2664.12810

Mollet, P., Hardegger, R., Altwegg, R., Korner, P., Birrer, S., 2017. Die Brutvogelfauna eines Nadelwaldes der nördlichen Voralpen nach dem Sturm Lothar. Schweizerische Zeitschrift fur Forstwesen 168, 59–66. doi:10.3188/szf.2017.0059

Mutumi, G.L., Jacobs, D.S., Winker, H., 2017. The relative contribution of drift and selection to phenotypic divergence: A test case using the horseshoe bats Rhinolophus simulator and Rhinolophus swinnyi. Ecology and Evolution 7, 4299–4311.

Photopoulou, T., Ferreira, I.M., Best, P.B., Kasuya, T., Marsh, H., 2017. Evidence for a postreproductive phase in female false killer whales Pseudorca crassidens. Frontiers in Zoology 14, 30. doi:10.1186/s12983-017-0208-y

Remisiewicz, M., Tree, A., Underhill, L.G., Burman, M., 2017. Age-specific and seasonal variation in relationship between moult and pre-migratory fuelling in Wood Sandpipers Tringa glareola in southern Africa. Ibis 159, 91–102. doi:10.1111/ibi.12436

Reynolds, C., Cumming, G.S., Vilà, M., Green, A.J., 2017. Birds as key vectors for the dispersal of some alien species: Further thoughts. Diversity and Distributions 23, 577–580. doi:10.1111/ddi.12549

Roberson, L., Attwood, C., Winker, H., Cockroft, A., Van Zyl, D., 2017. Potential application of baited remote underwater video to survey abundance of west coast rock lobster Jasus lalandii. Fisheries Management and Ecology 24, 49–61. doi:10.1111/fme.12201

Roux, M., Wilkin, P., Balkwill, K., Boatwright, J.S., Bytebier, B., Filer, D., Klak, C., Klopper, R.R., Koekemoer, M., Livermore, L., Lubke, R., Magee, A.R., Manning, J.C., Paton, A., Pearce, T., Slingsby, J., van Wyk, B.-E., Victor, J.E., von Staden, L., 2017. Producing a plant diversity portal for South Africa. Taxon 66, 421–431. doi:10.12705/662.9

Slingsby, J.A., Merow, C., Aiello-Lammens, M., Allsopp, N., Hall, S., Mollmann, H.K., Turner, R., Wilson, A.M., Silander, J.A., 2017. Intensifying postfire weather and biological invasion drive species loss in a Mediterranean-type biodiversity hotspot. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 114, 4697–4702. doi:10.1073/pnas.1619014114

Staude, H., Mecenero, S., Oberprieler, R., Sharp, A., Sharp, I., Williams, M., Maclean, M., 2016. An illustrated report on the larvae and adults of 962 African Lepidoptera species. Results of the Caterpillar Rearing Group: a novel, collaborative method of rearing and recording lepidopteran life-histories. Metamorphosis 27, 46–59.

Tate, G., Sumasgutner, P., Koeslag, A., Amar, A., 2017. Pair complementarity influences reproductive output in the polymorphic Black Sparrowhawk Accipiter melanoleucus. Journal of Avian Biology 48, 387–398. doi:10.1111/jav.01100

Treurnicht, M., Colville, J.F., Joppa, L.N., Huyser, O., Manning, J., 2017. Counting complete? Finalising the plant inventory of a global biodiversity hotspot. PeerJ 5, e2984. doi:10.7717/peerj.2984

van Velden, J., Altwegg, R., Shaw, K., Ryan, P., 2017. Movement patterns and survival estimates of Blue Cranes in the Western Cape. Ostrich 88, 33–43. doi:10.2989/00306525.2016.1224782

Visser, V., Wilson, J.R., Canavan, K., Canavan, S., Fish, L., Maitre, D.L., Nänni, I., Mashau, C., O’Connor, T.G., Ivey, P., Kumschick, Sabrina, Richardson, David M, 2017. Grasses as invasive plants in South Africa revisited: Patterns, pathways and management. Bothalia-African Biodiversity & Conservation 47, 1–29. doi:10.4102/abc.v47i2.2169

Vonesh, J., McCoy, M., Altwegg, R., Landi, P., Measey, J., 2017a. Functional responses can’t unify invasion ecology. Biological Invasions 19, 1673–1676. doi:10.1007/s10530-016-1356-2

Vonesh, J., McCoy, M., Altwegg, R., Landi, P., Measey, J., 2017b. Rather than unifying invasion biology, Dick et al.’s approach rests on subjective foundations. Biological Invasions 19, 1679–1680. doi:10.1007/s10530-016-1361-5



Best, P.B., Photopoulou, T., 2016. Identifying the “demon whale-biter”: Patterns of scarring on large whales attributed to a cookie-cutter shark Isistius sp. PloS one 11, e0152643.

Boehme, L., Baker, A., Fedak, M., \AArthun, M., Nicholls, K., Robinson, P., Costa, D., Biuw, M., Photopoulou, T., 2016. Bimodal winter haul-out patterns of adult Weddell seals (Leptonychotes weddellii) in the southern Weddell Sea. PloS one 11, e0155817.

Broms, K.M., Hooten, M.B., Johnson, D.S., Altwegg, R., Conquest, L.L., 2016. Dynamic occupancy models for explicit colonization processes. Ecology 97, 194–204.

Buckland, S.T., Oedekoven, C.S., Borchers, D.L., 2016. Model-based distance sampling. Journal of Agricultural, Biological and Environmental Statistics 21, 58–75.

Canavan, S., Richardson, D.M., Visser, V., Le Roux, J., Vorontsova, M., Wilson, J.R., 2016. The global distribution of bamboos: assessing correlates of introduction and invasion. AoB Plants 9, plw078. doi:10.1093/aobpla/plw078

Clark, A.E., Altwegg, R., Ormerod, J.T., 2016. A variational Bayes approach to the analysis of occupancy models. PloS one 11, e0148966.

Daru, B.H., Bank, M., Maurin, O., Yessoufou, K., Schaefer, H., Slingsby, J. A., Davies, T.J., 2016. A novel phylogenetic regionalization of phytogeographical zones of southern Africa reveals their hidden evolutionary affinities. Journal of Biogeography 43, 155–166.

De Vos, A., Cumming, G.S., Moore, C.A., Maciejewski, K., Duckworth, G., 2016. The relevance of spatial variation in ecotourism attributes for the economic sustainability of protected areas. Ecosphere 7, e01207.

Dicken, M., Cliff, G., Winker, H., 2016. Sharks caught in the KwaZulu-Natal bather protection programme, South Africa. 13. The tiger shark Galeocerdo cuvier. African Journal of Marine Science 38, 1–17.

Ellender, B., Weyl, O., Winker, H., 2016. Success of a large riverine cyprinid smallmouth yellowfish Labeobarbus aeneus in a southern African impoundment. Fisheries Management and Ecology 23, 44–54.

Froese, R., Walters, C., Pauly, D., Winker, H., Weyl, O.L., Demirel, N., Tsikliras, A.C., Holt, S.J., 2016a. Reply to Andersen et al. (2016) “Assumptions behind size-based ecosystem models are realistic.” ICES Journal of Marine Science: Journal du Conseil 73, 1656–1658. doi:10.1093/icesjms/fsv273

Froese, R., Winker, H., Gascuel, D., Sumalia, U.R., Pauly, D., 2016b. Minimizing the impact of fishing. Fish and Fisheries 17, 785–802.

Garcia, R.A., Cabeza, M., Altwegg, R., Araújo, M.B., 2016. Do projections from bioclimatic envelope models and climate change metrics match? Global Ecology and Biogeography 25, 65–74.

Geerts, S., Mashele, B.V., Visser, V., Wilson, J.R., 2016. Lack of human-assisted dispersal means Pueraria montana var. lobata (kudzu vine) could still be eradicated from South Africa. Biological Invasions 18, 3119–3126.

Gordon, I., Altwegg, R., Evans, D., Ewen, J., Johnson, J., Pettorelli, N., Young, J., 2016. Reducing agricultural loss and food waste: how will nature fare? Animal Conservation 19, 305–308.

Gridley, T., Elwen, S.H., Rashley, G., Badenas Krakauer, A., Heiler, J., 2016. Bottlenose dolphins change their whistling  characteristics in relation to vessel presence, surface behaviour and group composition. Proceedings of Meetings on Acoustics 27, 10030.

Heiler, J., Elwen, S.H., Kriesell, H., Gridley, T., 2016. Changes in bottlenose dolphin whistle parameters related to vessel presence, surface behaviour and group composition. Animal Behaviour 117, 167–177.

Huntley, B., Collingham, Y.C., Singarayer, J.S., Valdes, P.J., Barnard, P., Midgley, G.F., Altwegg, R., Ohlemüller, R., 2016. Explaining patterns of avian diversity and endemicity: climate and biomes of southern Africa over the last 140,000 years. Journal of Biogeography 43, 874–886.

Jack, S., Hoffman, M., Rohde, R., Durbach, I., 2016. Climate change sentinel or false prophet? The case of Aloe dichotoma. Diversity and Distributions 22, 745–757.

Janion-Scheepers, C., Measey, J., Braschler, B., Chown, S.L., Coetzee, L., Colville, J.F., Dames, J., Davies, A.B., Davies, S.J., Davis, A.L., Dippenaar-Schoeman, A.S., 2016. Soil biota in a megadiverse country: Current knowledge and future research directions in South Africa. Pedobiologia 59, 129–174.

Karenyi, N., Nel, R., Altwegg, R., Sink, K., 2016a. Incorporating species detectability into conservation targets based on the species–area relationship. Diversity and Distributions 22, 758–769.

Karenyi, N., Sink, K., Nel, R., 2016b. Defining seascapes for marine unconsolidated shelf sediments in an eastern boundary upwelling region: The southern Benguela as a case study. Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science 169, 195–206.

Karolyi, F., Hansal, T., Krenn, H.W., Colville, J.F., 2016. Comparative morphology of the mouthparts of the megadiverse South African monkey beetles (Scarabaeidae: Hopliini): feeding adaptations and guild structure. PeerJ 4, e1597.

King, R., McClintock, B.T., Kidney, D., Borchers, D., 2016. Capture–recapture abundance estimation using a semi-complete data likelihood approach. The Annals of Applied Statistics 10, 264–285.

Lebuhn, G., Connor, E.F., Brand, M., Colville, J.F., 2016. Monitoring pollinators around the world, in: Gemiil-Herren, B. (Ed.), Pollination Services to Agriculture. Routledge, New York.

Leos-Barajas, V., Photopoulou, T., Langrock, R., Patterson, T.A., Watanabe, Y., Murgatroyd, M., Papastamatiou, Y.P., 2016. Analysis of animal accelerometer data using hidden Markov models. Methods in Ecology and Evolution 8, 161–173.

Lloyd, P., Martin, T., Taylor, A., Braae, A., Altwegg, R., 2016. Age, sex, and social influences on adult survival in the co-operatively breeding Karoo scrub-robin. Emu 116, 394–401.

Mann, B., Winker, H., Maggs, J., Porter, S., 2016. Monitoring the recovery of a previously exploited surf-zone fish community in the St Lucia Marine Reserve, South Africa, using a no-take sanctuary area as a benchmark. African Journal of Marine Science 38, 423–441.

Maphisa, D.H., Smit-Robinson, H., Underhill, L.G., Altwegg, R., 2016. Drivers of bird species richness within moist high-altitude grasslands in eastern South Africa. PloS one 11, e0162609.

Mutumi, G.L., Jacobs, D.S., Winker, H., 2016. Sensory drive mediated by climatic gradients partially explains divergence in acoustic signals in two horseshoe bat species, Rhinolophus swinnyi and Rhinolophus simulator. PloS ONE 11, e0148053.

Parker, D., Winker, H., Attwood, C., Kerwath, S., 2016a. Dark times for dageraad Chrysoblephus cristiceps: evidence for stock collapse. African Journal of Marine Science 38, 341–349.

Parker, D., Winker, H., Bernard, A., Götz, A., 2016. Evaluating long-term monitoring of temperate reef fishes: A simulation testing framework to compare methods. Ecological Modelling 333, 1–10.

Parker, D., Winker, H., Bernard, A., Heyns-Veale, E., Langlois, T., Harvey, E., Götz, A., 2016b. Insights from baited video sampling of temperate reef fishes: How biased are angling surveys? Fisheries Research 179, 191–201.

Péron, G., Altwegg, R., Jamie, G.A., Spottiswoode, C.N., 2016. Coupled range dynamics of brood parasites and their hosts responding to climate and vegetation changes. Journal of Animal Ecology 85, 1191–1199

Robertson, M.P., Visser, V., Hui, C., 2016. Biogeo: an R package for assessing and improving data quality of occurrence record datasets. Ecography 39, 394–401.

Scholtz, R., Kiker, G.A., Duckworth, G.D., Scharler, U.M., Mwambi, H.G., Venter, F.J., 2016. Different drivers create spatial vegetation cover and vertical structure in semi-arid African savannas. African Journal of Range & Forage Science 33, 91–100.

Sumasgutner, P., Tate, G.J., Koeslag, A., Amar, A., 2016. Family morph matters: factors determining survival and recruitment in a long-lived polymorphic raptor. Journal of Animal Ecology 85, 1043–1055.

Thorson, J.T., Fonner, R., Haltuch, M.A., Ono, K., Winker, H., 2016a. Accounting for spatio-temporal variation and fisher targeting when estimating abundance from multispecies fishery data. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences DOI: 10.1139/cjfas-2015-0598.

Thorson, J.T., Rindorf, A., Gao, J., Hanselman, D.H., Winker, H., 2016b. Density-dependent changes in effective area occupied for sea-bottom-associated marine fishes. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 283, 20161853.

Treurnicht, M., Colville, J.F., Joppa, L.N., Huyser, O., Manning, J., 2016. Counting complete? Finalising the plant inventory of a global biodiversity hotspot. PeerJ 4, e2573v1.

Verboom, G.A., Herron, M.L., Moncrieff, G.R., Slingsby, J.A., 2016. Maintenance of species integrity in the context of a recent radiation: the case of Jamesbrittenia (Scrophulariaceae: Limoselleae) in southern Africa. Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society 182, 115–139.

Visser, V., Wilson, J.R., Fish, L., Brown, C., Cook, G.D., Richardson, D.M., 2016. Much more give than take: South Africa as a major donor but infrequent recipient of invasive non-native grasses. Global Ecology and Biogeography 25, 679–692.

Weller, F., Sherley, R.B., Shannon, L.J., Jarre, A., Stewart, T., Scott, L., Altwegg, R., Cecchini, L.-A., Crawford, R.J., Geldenhuys, D., Ludynia, K., Waller, L.J., 2016a. Penguins’ perilous conservation status calls for complementary approach based on sound ecological principles: reply to Butterworth et al. (2015). Ecological Modelling 337, 1–3.

Weller, F., Sherley, R.B., Waller, L.J., Ludynia, K., Geldenhuys, D., Shannon, L.J., Jarre, A., 2016b. System dynamics modelling of the endangered African penguin populations on Dyer and Robben islands, South Africa. Ecological Modelling 327, 44–56.

White, J., Jack, S., Hoffman, M., Puttick, J., Bonora, D., Visser, V., February, E., 2016. Collapse of an iconic conifer: Long-term changes in the demography of Widdringtonia cedarbergensis using repeat photography. BMC Ecology 16, 53.

Wigley, B.J., Slingsby, J.A., Díaz, S., Bond, W.J., Fritz, H., Coetsee, C., 2016. Leaf traits of African woody savanna species across climate and soil fertility gradients: evidence for conservative versus acquisitive resource-use strategies. Journal of Ecology 104, 1357–1369.

Winker, H., Novellie, P., Selier, J., Birss, C., Hraber, H., 2016. Population trends and management strategy tools for Cape Mountain Zebra, Technical Report commissioned by the Scientific Authority of South Africa.

Zuberogoitia, I., Gil, J.A., Martínez, J.E., Erni, B., Aniz, B., López-López, P., 2016. The flight feather moult pattern of the bearded vulture (Gypaetus barbatus). Journal of Ornithology 157, 209–217.