Habitat fragmentation is one of the main causes of biodiversity reduction strongly influencing species distribution and abundance. Predictive modeling of species distribution allow us to understand which factors may affect their distribution and abundance and also to preview possible alterations in this pattern. This study aims to elaborate biodiversity scenarios through predictive modeling of vertebrates (birds, medium-to-large size mammals and stream fishes), based on ecological niche modeling. The study will be carried out at Corumbataí river basin due to its great importance for biodiversity conservation in the region. This study will be developed in five steps: a) Vertebrate survey: species occurrence will be inferred by direct and indirect observations in the field. Study sites will be selected by the systematic stratified sampling method, in eight strata: sugar cane, pasture, silviculture and forest, in areas under and upper 710 meters; b) Predictive models of species distribution: models with presence data and environmental layers, such as, land cover, aspect, geology, slope etc will be performed in OpenModeller software; c) Model validation: models will be validated statistically through confusion matrix and quantitative indexes; d) Biodiversity scenarios: they will be generated based on species richness of the basin; and, e) Landscape influence in biodiversity scenarios: possible effects of landscape alterations (land use simulation) in biodiversity scenarios will be evaluated in terms of expansion and retraction of potential species distribution models. Results could provide a prognostic of species potential distribution in relation to landscape and also they could allow us to evaluate possible landscape effects in the species distribution pattern, aiming to contribute to the biodiversity management and conservation in Sao Paulo State.
News published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the scholarship: