Miguel A Rodriguez

Miguel A Rodriguez
University of Alcalá | UAH · Department of Life Sciences

Professor of Ecology

About

120
Publications
28,156
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Introduction
My research pursues documenting broad scale patterns of distribution of faunas and floras, as well as identifying the current and historical factors and processes that underlie them. I am also interested on the effects of climate change and habitat loss and fragmentation on species and biotas. Personal Web page: http://www3.uah.es/marodriguez/
Additional affiliations
January 2011 - present
January 2001 - December 2012
Universidad de Alcalá
January 2000 - present
University of California, Santa Barbara

Publications

Publications (120)
Article
Full-text available
Motivation We accessed published and unpublished floristic sources to compile a comprehensive species list of the Iberian–Balearic terrestrial vascular flora and generate AFLIBER, an accurate floristic database of georeferenced plant occurrence records. Main type of variable contained Species distribution data totalling 1,824,549 plant occurrence...
Article
Full-text available
Protected areas (PAs) have been created with the purpose of preserving biodiversity, acting as refuges from anthropogenic pressures. Traditionally, PAs have been designed and managed to represent mainly taxonomic diversity, ignoring other diversity facets such as its functional and phylogenetic components. Yet, functional and phylogenetic diversity...
Article
Full-text available
Humanity faces the challenge of conserving the attributes of biodiversity that may be essential to secure human wellbeing. Among all the organisms that are beneficial to humans, plants stand out as the most important providers of natural resources. Therefore, identifying plant uses is critical to preserve the beneficial potential of biodiversity an...
Article
Full-text available
Earthworms are an important soil taxon as ecosystem engineers, providing a variety of crucial ecosystem functions and services. Little is known about their diversity and distribution at large spatial scales, despite the availability of considerable amounts of local-scale data. Earthworm diversity data, obtained from the primary literature or provid...
Article
Full-text available
Earthworms are an important soil taxon as ecosystem engineers, providing a variety of crucial ecosystem functions and services. Little is known about their diversity and distribution at large spatial scales, despite the availability of considerable amounts of local-scale data. Earthworm diversity data, obtained from the primary literature or provid...
Article
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The divergent nature of evolution suggests that securing the human benefits that are directly provided by biodiversity may require counting on disparate lineages of the Tree of Life. However, quantitative evidence supporting this claim is still tenuous. Here, we draw on a global review of plant-use records demonstrating that maximum levels of phylo...
Article
Full-text available
Identifying structure underlying high-dimensional data is a common challenge across scientific disciplines. We revisit correspondence analysis (CA), a classical method revealing such structures, from a network perspective. We present the poorly-known equivalence of CA to spectral clustering and graph-embedding techniques. We point out a number of c...
Article
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Biogeographic regions have been extensively used as reference units in macroecological studies and to prioritize biodiversity conservation efforts. However, classical bioregionalizations were delineated based on taxonomical similarity across space, and thus the importance of historical factors may have been underrated. This limitation may be partic...
Preprint
Full-text available
The divergent nature of evolution suggests that securing the human benefits that are directly provided by biodiversity may require counting on disparate lineages of the Tree of Life. However, quantitative evidence connecting evolutionary history to human well-being is still surprisingly tenuous. Here, we drew on a global review of plant-use records...
Article
Full-text available
Soil organisms, including earthworms, are a key component of terrestrial ecosystems. However, little is known about their diversity, their distribution, and the threats affecting them. We compiled a global dataset of sampled earthworm communities from 6928 sites in 57 countries as a basis for predicting patterns in earthworm diversity, abundance, a...
Data
This PDF file includes: Materials and Methods Supplementary Text Figs. S1 to S6 Tables S1 to S4 References
Article
We test the ability of the biotic exchange across the Bering land bridge coupled to niche conservatism to explain current day mammalian diversity gradients. The Holarctic. Mammals. We compared the diversity within clades that participated in the exchange (colonizers), whose ancestors withstood the Beringian cold temperatures, with that within clade...
Article
Although the description of bioregions dates back to the origin of biogeography, the processes originating their associated species pools have been seldom studied. Ancient historical events are thought to play a fundamental role in configuring bioregions, but the effects of more recent events on these regional biotas are largely unknown. We used a...
Article
Full-text available
Evolutionary history can explain species resemblance to a large extent. Thus, if closely related species share combinations of traits that modulate their response to environmental changes, then phylogeny could predict species sensitivity to novel stressors such as increased levels of deforestation. To test this hypothesis, we used 66,949 plots (25-...
Data
Response of tree species (Ω values) to forest canopy cover measured at different landscape scales (concentric circles centred on the plots with radiuses of 1.6, 3.2 and 6.4 km-radius, respectively). The bars and dots correspond to 95% CI of Ω values. The response of species was considered negative when the 95% CI of Ω completely laid below zero (re...
Data
Fossil information and minimum and maximum age constraints used for the dating analysis. Fossils were assigned to the most recent common ancestors (MRCA) of the listed taxa. (XLSX)
Preprint
Full-text available
This preprint has been reviewed and recommended by Peer Community In Evolutionary Biology ( https://doi.org/10.24072/pci.evolbiol.100053 ). Despite the description of bioregions dates back from the origin of biogeography, the processes originating their associated species pools have been seldom studied. Ancient historical events are thought to play...
Article
Full-text available
Phylogenetic imputation has recently emerged as a potentially powerful tool for predicting missing data in functional traits datasets. As such, understanding the limitations of phylogenetic modelling in predicting trait values is critical if we are to use them in subsequent analyses. Previous studies have focused on the relationship between phyloge...
Preprint
Full-text available
Successful explanations for diversity gradients should account for both the generalized tendency towards a higher tropical diversity and its exceptions. Moreover, identifying exceptions to general trends, such as the latitudinal diversity gradient can give insight into the mechanistic explanations responsible for structuring them. The Cenozoic biot...
Preprint
Full-text available
Successful explanations for diversity gradients should account for both the generalized tendency towards a higher tropical diversity and its exceptions. Moreover, identifying exceptions to general trends, such as the latitudinal diversity gradient can give insight into the mechanistic explanations responsible for structuring them. The Cenozoic biot...
Article
Full-text available
Background Inaccurate estimates of phylogenetic signal may mislead interpretations of many ecological and evolutionary processes, and hence understanding where potential sources of uncertainty may lay has become a priority for comparative studies. Importantly, the sensitivity of phylogenetic signal indices and their associated statistical tests...
Article
In recent years several studies have been carried out to test the validity of Bergmann's rule for amphibians, and have generated varying results. Due to the lack of agreement on this topic, here we examine the relationship between climate and body size for one anuran species (Bufo calamita, commonly known as the natterjack toad) with a new methodol...
Poster
Full-text available
La degradación de hábitats es una de las principales amenazas para la biodiversidad. La reacción de cada especie a estos procesos parece estar íntimamente relacionada con sus características funcionales y de historia de vida. A pesar de que en los últimos años se han registrado una amplia variedad caracteres funcionales de las especies de muchos gr...
Article
Full-text available
Aim: Mapping the distribution and diversity of plant functional traits is critical for projecting future changes to vegetation under global change. Maps of plant functional traits, however, are scarce due very sparse global trait data matrices. A potential solution to this data limitation is to utilize the known levels of phylogenetic signal in tra...
Article
Species attributes are often used to explain diversity patterns across assemblages/communities. However, repeated species co-occurrences can generate spatial pattern and strong statistical relationships between aggregated attributes and richness in the absence of biological information. Our aim is to increase awareness of this problem. North Americ...
Article
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The evolution of resource use in herbivores has been conceptualized as an analog of the theory of island biogeography, assuming that plant species are islands separated by phylogenetic distances. Despite its usefulness, this analogy has paradoxically led to neglecting real biogeographical processes in the study of macroevolutionary patterns of herb...
Article
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Current climate, biotic habitat provision and historical events are known drivers of diversity patterns. However, these three factors are seldom evaluated together. Here, we study the influence of climate, the distribution of deciduous forests and Pleistocene climate changes on the species diversity of Carabus ground beetles in Europe. Continental...
Article
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The relationship between large-scale gradients in species richness and functional diversity provides important information regarding the mechanisms driving patterns of biodiversity. A classic hypothesis in ecology is that strong interspecific interactions should result in an increase in the functional volume of assemblages as the species richness i...
Article
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How species richness relates to environmental gradients at large extents is commonly investigated aggregating local site data to coarser grains. However, such relationships often change with the grain of analysis, potentially hiding the local signal. Here we show that a novel network technique, the "method of reflections", could unveil the relation...
Article
Ecological theory predicts that fragmentation aggravates the effects of habitat loss, yet empirical results show mixed evidences, which fail to support the theory instead reinforcing the primary importance of habitat loss. Fragmentation hypotheses have received much attention due to their potential implications for biodiversity conservation, howeve...
Article
Full-text available
Extinction risk and body size have been found to be related in various vertebrate groups, with larger species being more at risk than smaller ones. We checked whether this was also the case for snakes by investigating extinction risk–body size relationships in the New World's Colubroidea species. We used the IUCN Red List risk categories to assign...
Article
Theory predicts that fragmentation aggravates habitat loss, increasing the extinction threshold of habitat specialists.However, contradictory empirical results have fuelled claims that fragmentation has been overemphasized, and more attention should be given to habitat loss for preserving species. We assess variation in species sensitivity to fores...
Article
AimTo quantify the contributions of environment, phylogeny and geography to variation in the breeding and non‐breeding geographical range sizes of oscine passerines. LocationWestern Hemisphere. Methods Breeding range sizes were estimated for 420 species, and non‐breeding ranges were estimated for 122 migratory species. Phylogenetic, environmental a...
Article
Aim When dividing the world into zoogeographical regions, Alfred Russel Wallace stipulated a set of criteria by which regions should be determined, foremost the use of generic rather than species distributions. Yet, recent updates of Wallace’s scheme have not followed his reasoning, probably explain- ing in part the discrepancies found. Using a rec...
Article
Frank and McNaughton reported that community stability, measured by the resistance to change in species composition when perturbed by drought, increased with species diversity in grasslands of Yellowstone, USA. They also found that species diversity increased with spatial heterogeneity of the community, pattern diversity. In a similar study of gras...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Background/Question/Methods The study of species richness at large extent along climate gradients is commonly investigated aggregating local site data at coarser grain, although this technique may introduce artifacts, such as introducing spurious species co-occurrences, or changing the steepness of the relationships between species richness and t...
Article
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We identified high-value biodiversity areas (HVBAs) of terrestrial vertebrates according to a combined index of biodiversity (CBI) for each major taxon and a standardized biodiversity index (SBI) for all taxa in 2195 cells of 50 × 50 km in Western Europe to evaluate whether these areas are included in the current protected area networks. The World...
Article
Ecology, evolution, and historical events all contribute to biogeographic patterns, but studies that integrate them are scarce. Here we focus on how biotic exchanges of mammals during the Late Cenozoic have contributed to current geographic body size patterns. We explore differences in the environmental correlates and phylogenetic patterning of bod...
Article
We used eigenvector mapping in space and phylogeny to investigate the relationships among space, phylogeny and environment on body size and range size variation across two groups of venomous snakes – Viperidae and Elapidae – from the New World. Data on species geographic range sizes, maximum body sizes and phylogenetic relationships were compiled f...
Article
Full-text available
Although species distribution modelling (SDM) is widely accepted among the scientific community and is increasingly used in ecology, conservation biology and biogeography, methodological limitations generate potential problems for its application in macroecology. Using amphibian species richness in North and South America, we compare species richne...
Article
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The 'EU Council conclusions on biodiversity post-2010' re-enforced Europe's commitment to halt biodiversity loss by 2020. Identifying areas of high-value for biodiversity conservation is an important issue to meet this target. We investigated the geographic pattern of terrestrial vertebrate diversity status in Europe by assessing the species richne...
Article
Body size is evolutionarily constrained, but the influence of phylogenetic relationships on global body size (i.e. body mass) gradients is unexplored. We quantify and map the family-level phylogenetic and non-phylogenetic structure of the global gradient of birds, evaluating the extent to which it is influenced by phylogenetic inertia in contrast t...
Data
Body mass estimations for species belonging to 61 genera of extinct mammals of the New World. Only Pleistocene megafaunal species and genera are considered (≥44 kg) since they are known to have selectively been driven extinct. Body size values were obtained from Smith et al. (2003), and for unspecific generic fossil records an average of the body s...
Article
Aim Comparative evidence for phylogenetic niche conservatism – the tendency for lineages to retain their ancestral niches over long time scales – has so far been mixed, depending on spatial and taxonomic scale. We quantify and compare conservatism in the climatic factors defining range boundaries in extant continental mammals and amphibians in orde...
Article
Based on atlas data with a 10-km cell resolution for 1,406 exotic plant species inhabiting Great Britain, we investigate the extent to which arrival time (residence time) and biogeographical origin (climate suitability) are associated with range sizes of exotic plants and how exotic plant richness is related to current climate and the human footpri...
Article
Among the statistical methods available to control for phylogenetic autocorrelation in ecological data, those based on eigenfunction analysis of the phylogenetic distance matrix among the species are becoming increasingly important tools. Here, we evaluate a range of criteria to select eigenvectors extracted from a phylogenetic distance matrix (usi...
Conference Paper
Background/Question/Methods Plant functional traits are well-established indicators of several life history strategy axes. Their distribution within and among sites has been used to assess mechanisms of community assembly, including habitat filtering and competitive exclusion, while global distributions have shown some correlations with geographi...
Article
Aim The global richness gradient of angiosperm families is correlated with current climate, and it has been claimed that historical processes are not necessary to understand patterns of plant family richness. This claim has drawn criticism, and there have been doubts about the quality of the data used to quantify the pattern. We revisit this issue...
Article
Full-text available
We devise a regionalization system based on the geographical distribution of 2,265 amphibian species in South America. We used range maps of amphibians to obtain a presence/absence data grid resolved to 9310 km(2). Biogeographical regions were generated by submitting the dataset to k-means clustering combined with v-fold cross-validation. The bound...
Article
Full-text available
Ecology Letters (2011) 14: 741–748 Current climate and Pleistocene climatic changes are both known to be associated with geographical patterns of diversity. We assess their associations with the European Scarabaeinae dung beetles, a group with high dispersal ability and well-known adaptations to warm environments. By assessing spatial stationarity...
Article
Understanding the ecological determinants of biological invasions is a key issue for predicting the spread of exotic species over broad geographical extents. The goal of this study was to investigate independent and combined effects of climatic and human-related factors on native and exotic plant species richness in Great Britain. We used multiple...
Article
Aim To determine if it is possible to generate analytically derived regionalizations for multiple groups of European plants and animals and to explore potential influences on the regions for each taxonomic group. Location Europe. Methods We subjected range maps of trees, butterflies, reptiles, amphibians, birds and mammals to k-means clustering fol...
Article
Niche conservatism has been proposed as a mechanism influencing large-scale patterns of taxonomic richness. We document the species richness patterns of five monophyletic squamate reptile groups (gekkonids, cordylids-scincids, lacertids, chameleons and alethinophidian snakes) in eastern and southern Africa, and explore if observed patterns reflect...
Conference Paper
Background/Question/Methods The richness of angiosperm families is known to be strongly associated with climate, specifically water deficits and energy. However, the evolutionary basis of these associations remains unresolved. We use updated distribution maps of all non-marine families and the APGIII phylogeny to explore the phylogenetic structure...
Article
In fragmented landscapes the relationship between the probability of occurrence of single species and the amount of suitable habitat is usually not proportional, with a threshold habitat level below which the population becomes extinct. Ecological theory predicts that, although the reduction in species’ occurrence probabilities (and eventually the...
Article
Climate change can induce shifts in species ranges. Of special interest are range shifts in regions with a conflict of interest between land use and the conservation of threatened species. Here we focus on the 94 threatened terrestrial vertebrates occurring in the Madrid region (Central Spain) and model their distributions using data for the whole...
Article
Herbivores are expected to influence grassland ecosystems by modifying root biomass and root spatial distribution of plant communities. Studies in perennial dominated grasslands suggest that grazing intensity and primary productivity may be strong determinants of the vertical distribution of subterranean biomass. However, no studies have addressed...
Article
Full-text available
The knowledge of the spatial patterns of species richness and, particularly, of endemic and threatened species at the scale at which management activities take place is crucial for conservation. Yet, detailed descriptions of species' distribution areas are often lacking or incomplete, especially in the tropics. This article focuses on the African i...