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Jon P. Beckmann

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Abstract. It is increasingly common for studies of animal ecology to use model-based predictions of environmental variables as explanatory or predictor variables, even though model prediction uncertainty is typically unknown. To demonstrate the potential for misleading inferences when model predictions with error are used in place of direct measurements, we compared snow water equivalent (SWE) and snow depth as predicted by the Snow Data Assimilation System (SNODAS) to field measurements of SWE and snow depth. We examined locations on elk (Cervus canadensis) winter ranges in western Wyoming, because modeled data such as SNODAS output are often used for inferences on elk ecology. Overall, SNODAS predictions tended...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Ecological Applications
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521 unique elk were monitored across several years with GPS collars in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem to determine winter-to-winter annual dispersal distances. There were a total of 704 annual movements. The dataset spans from 2001 to 2015. Annual movements were based on a single location in January or February and another location in the subsequent winter. An individual elk was included at most three times (once for each year) in the data. All elk were female, except one of the individuals in the dataset was a male. We included his movement in the analysis for completeness, but as there was only one male we chose not to directly model any differences in movement behavior between male and female elk.
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