To celebrate our 10th Anniversary, we are highlighting a key article from each of our volumes. For Volume 4, we selected Estimating age‐specific survival when age is unknown: open population capture–recapture models with age structure and heterogeneity by Matechou et al. (2013).
Matt Schofield, University of Otago
Historically, capture-recapture experiments involved physical capture and marking of animals in distinct capture sessions. The use of alternate technologies, e.g. genetics and camera traps, have motivated many recent developments. This includes situations where misidentification may occur as well as models for data that are no longer collected on discrete sampling occasions. The three papers I highlight all have some connection with data or processes that occur in continuous time.
1. Borchers et al. (2014) develop a spatial continuous time model that they use to estimate the density of jaguar in a wildlife sanctuary in Belize. A non-homogeneous Poisson process in space-time is assumed, and importantly, aggregated data summaries are not sufficient statistics for the parameters of interest.
2. Choquet (2017) considers continuous time open population models. A continuous time extension to the multi-state capture-recapture model is a special case of their formulation. Dead recoveries can be included, as can uncertainty in the observations.
3. The final paper is Ergon et al. (2018), who discuss the importance of parameterisation when modeling capture-recapture (and related) data. They argue that demographic processes occur in continuous time, and should be described as such, even if we collect data in discrete time. The focus is on mortality, with the authors showing several benefits of parameterising discrete models in terms of a mortality hazard rate.
Read about the article highlighted for Volume 4 here: Estimating age‐specific survival when age is unknown: open population capture–recapture models with age structure and heterogeneity
Find out about the Methods in Ecology and Evolution articles selected to celebrate Volumes 1-6: