Niels Raes

Niels Raes
Naturalis Biodiversity Center | NCB

PhD
Programme Manager International Biodiversity Infrastructures at Naturalis Biodiversity Center

About

128
Publications
79,686
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3,573
Citations
Citations since 2016
51 Research Items
2784 Citations
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Introduction
NLBIF – or ‘Netherlands Biodiversity Information Facility’ – is the Dutch national node for GBIF – ‘Global Biodiversity Information Facility’. GBIF is an international network and research infrastructure funded by the world’s governments and aimed at providing anyone, anywhere, open access to data about all types of life on Earth. As NLBIF node manager I facilitate mobilization of biodiversity data curated by Dutch organisations (and beyond), promote the development of ICT infrastructures and analysis tools, and encourage participation of stakeholders in GBIF to further scientific research and sustainable development, allow evidence based conservation policies on biodiversity and ecosystem services, and to improve the quality of life on Earth in general and for humanity in particular.
Additional affiliations
September 2018 - present
NLBIF - Netherlands Biodiversity Information Facility
Position
  • Manager
Description
  • NLBIF is the Dutch node for GBIF – ‘Global Biodiversity Information Facility’ – an international research infrastructure funded by the world’s governments and aimed at providing anyone, anywhere, open access to data about all types of life on Earth.
April 2018 - December 2019
Naturalis Biodiversity Center
Position
  • Project Manager
Description
  • International project development
May 2010 - March 2018
Naturalis Biodiversity Center
Position
  • Research Associate
Description
  • Postdoctoral researcher on ENMs/SDMs, biodiversity, macroecology and climate change impacts.

Publications

Publications (128)
Article
Global warming may force montane species to shift upward to keep pace with their shifting climate niche. How species differences in such distribution shifts depend on their elevational positions, elevation-dependent warming rates, and other environmental constraints, or plant functional traits is poorly understood. Here, we analyzed for 137 Himalay...
Article
Full-text available
Threats to global biodiversity are increasingly recognised by scientists and the public as a critical challenge. Molecular sequencing technologies offer means to catalogue, explore, and monitor the richness and biogeography of life on Earth. However, exploiting their full potential requires tools that connect biodiversity infrastructures and resour...
Article
Full-text available
The dataset includes georeferenced occurrences of species listed in Annex I of Resolution 6 of the Bern Convention and, partly, in the Red Data Book of Ukraine. The dataset was compiled within the work of NGO "Ukrainian Nature Conservation Group" aimed to prepare a Shadow list of Emerald Network (European network Areas of Special Conservation Inter...
Article
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The Natural History Museum Rotterdam (NMR) is a regional natural history museum in The Netherlands that focuses on nature and biodiversity of the city of Rotterdam and its surroundings. Bureau Stadsnatuur Rotterdam (bSR) is part of the NMR and collects, mainly on behalf of third parties, data on the flora and fauna from primarily urban areas. The N...
Article
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Climate change is one of the main drivers of species extinction in the twentyfirst-century. Here, we (1) quantify potential changes in species’ bioclimatic area of habitat (BAH) of 135 native potential agroforestry species from the Brazilian flora, using two different climate change scenarios (SSP2-4.5 and SSP5-8.5) and dispersal scenarios, where s...
Article
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The declining biodiversity has upsetting consequences for social and economic development and represents a major concern for humanity. Legal and political framework plays an important role in biodiversity conservation planning, implementation, and coordination of actions. Legal provisions are complex and operate on different levels of governance (f...
Article
Full-text available
The declining biodiversity has upsetting consequences for social and economic development and represents a major concern for humanity. Legal and political framework plays an important role in biodiversity conservation planning, implementation, and coordination of actions. Legal provisions are complex and operate on different levels of governance (f...
Article
Full-text available
Tropical montane systems are characterized by a high plant species diversity and complex environmental gradients. Climate warming may force species to track suitable climatic conditions and shift their distribution upward, which may be particularly problematic for species with narrow elevational ranges. To better understand the fate of montane plan...
Article
Threats to global biodiversity are increasingly recognised by scientists and the public as a critical challenge. Molecular sequencing technologies offer means to catalogue, explore, and monitor the richness and biogeography of life on Earth. However, exploiting their full potential requires tools that connect biodiversity infrastructures and resour...
Article
Full-text available
The unique aquatic Pontocaspian (PC) biota of the Black Sea Basin (BSB) is in decline. The lack of detailed knowledge on the status and trends of species, populations, and communities hampers a thorough risk assessment and precludes effective conservation. This paper reviews PC biodiversity trends in the BSB (Bulgaria, Romania, Moldova, Ukraine, an...
Preprint
Aim The unique aquatic Pontocaspian (PC) biota of the Black Sea Basin (BSB) is in decline. Lack of detailed knowledge on the status and trends of species, populations and communities hampers a thorough risk assessment and precludes effective conservation. This paper aims to review PC biodiversity trends using endemic molluscs as a model group. We a...
Article
Full-text available
The Distributed System of Scientific Collections (DiSSCo) Research Infrastructure (RI) is presently in its preparatory phase. DiSSCo is developing a new distributed RI to operate as a one-stop-shop for the envisaged European Natural Science Collection (NSC) and all its derived information. Through mass digitisation, DiSSCo will transform the fragme...
Article
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Romania and Ukraine share the Black Sea coastline, the Danube Delta and associated habitats, which harbor the endemic, aquatic Pontocaspian biota. Currently, this biota is diminishing both in numbers of species and their abundance because of human activities, and its future persistence strongly depends on the adequacy of conservation measures. Roma...
Article
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The Caspian Sea is renowned for its endemic mollusk biodiversity. However, over the past decades, increasing anthropogenic pressures have caused decreases in abundances and even extinction of species. Both key pressures and endemic taxa are distributed spatially unevenly across the Caspian Sea, suggesting that ecologically different taxa such as ga...
Article
Digitisation and publication of museum specimen data is happening worldwide, but far from complete. Museums can start by sharing what they know about their holdings at a higher level, long before each object has its own record. Information about what is held in collections worldwide is needed by many stakeholders including collections managers, fun...
Article
Full-text available
New Guinea is the world’s largest tropical island and has fascinated naturalists for centuries. Home to some of the best-preserved ecosystems on the planet and to intact ecological gradients—from mangroves to tropical alpine grasslands—that are unmatched in the Asia-Pacific region, it is a globally recognized centre of biological and cultural diver...
Article
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Social networks, defined as sets of relationships between stakeholder organizations, are important determinants of constructive actions for biodiversity conservation. Such actions are achieved through cooperation between various stakeholders, exchange of information, and joint planning and implementation. We used a mix of qualitative and quantitati...
Article
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The Caspian Sea hosts unique native and endemic faunas. However, it is also source and sink of invasive alien species (IAS) with some listed among the worst 100 invasive species by the IUCN. A common approach to study biodiversity and biogeographic patterns or to predict the invasive potential of species is the application of ecological niche model...
Article
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Limiting climate change to less than 2°C is the focus of international policy under the climate convention (UNFCCC), and is essential to preventing extinctions, a focus of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). The post-2020 biodiversity framework drafted by the CBD proposes conserving 30% of both land and oceans by 2030. However, the combin...
Article
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Limiting climate change to less than 2°C is the focus of international policy under the climate convention (UNFCCC), and is essential to preventing extinctions, a focus of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). The post‐2020 biodiversity framework drafted by the CBD proposes conserving 30% of both land and oceans by 2030. However, the combin...
Article
Full-text available
New Guinea is the most biologically and linguistically diverse tropical island on Earth, yet the potential impacts of climate change on its biocultural heritage remain unknown. Analyzing 2353 endemic plant species distributions, we find that 63% of species are expected to have smaller geographic ranges by 2070. As a result, ecoregions may have an a...
Article
Full-text available
African bush mango trees (Irvingiaceae) are priority food trees in West and Central Africa. There are bitter-and sweet-fruited species, which are difficult to distinguish based on morphological characters. This has led to a debate about their correct taxonomic status. Furthermore, it is unclear whether they are native to the Dahomey Gap, the dry an...
Preprint
Full-text available
Romania and Ukraine share the Black Sea coastline, the Danube Delta and associated habitats, which harbor the unique Pontocaspian biodiversity. Pontocaspian biota represents endemic aquatic taxa adapted to the brackish (anomalohaline) conditions, which evolved in the Caspian and Black Sea basins. Currently, this biota is diminishing both in the num...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
With digitisation of natural history collections over the past decades, their traditional roles — for taxonomic studies and public education — have been greatly expanded into the fields of biodiversity assessments, climate change impact studies, trait analyses, sequencing, 3D object analyses etc. (Nelson and Ellis 2019; Watanabe 2019). Initial esti...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
DiSSCo – the Distributed System of Scientific Collections – will mobilise, unify and deliver bio- and geo-diversity information at the scale, form and precision required by scientific communities, and thereby transform a fragmented landscape into a coherent and responsive research infrastructure. At present DiSSCo has 115 partners from 21 countries...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Natural Science Collections (NSCs) contain specimen-related data from which we extract valuable information for science and policy. Openness of those collections facilitates development of science. Moreover, virtual accessibility to physical containers by means of their digitization will allow an exponential increase in the level of available infor...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Aggregating content of museum and scientific collections worldwide offers us the opportunity to realize a virtual museum of our planet and the life upon it through space and time. By mapping specimen-level data records to standards and publishing this information, an increasing number of collections contribute to a digitally accessible wealth of kn...
Technical Report
Full-text available
There is a growing need to set data-driven priorities when planning for the digitisation of European natural history collections. Currently, there is no single location where the required information is gathered and where it can be easily consulted and used by decision-makers and scientists. In particular, the information on digitised and non-digit...
Technical Report
Full-text available
The paper investigates how to implement open access to data in collection institutions and in the DiSSCo research infrastructure. Large-scale digitisation projects generate lots of images, but data transcription often remains backlogged for years. The paper discusses minimum information standards (MIDS) for digital specimens, and tentatively define...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Many biogeographical, macroecological and biodiversity studies rely on digitized and georeferenced specimen data from natural history musea and herbaria. Currently, GBIF, the most important data portal for biodiversity data holds 149 million records of preserved specimens. Within Europe, however, it is estimated that all collection institutes colle...
Article
Full-text available
European badger populations in the Netherlands suffered strong declines in the 1900s, becoming endangered in the 1980s. Despite mitigation actions, recovery of the population has been slow. Here, we use ecological niche modelling, relating 1515 badger sett (burrow) localities to data on topographic, groundwater table, soil type and land-cover varia...
Article
When development impacts a broad landscape and causes the loss of multiple ecosystem services, decisions about which of these impacts to offset must be made. We use industrial oil-palm developments in Kalimantan and quantify the potential for restoration to offset oil-palm impacts on carbon storage and biodiversity. We developed a unique backcastin...
Article
Full-text available
Species distribution models (SDMs) are widely used in ecology and conservation. Presence-only SDMs such as MaxEnt frequently use natural history collections (NHCs) as occurrence data, given their huge numbers and accessibility. NHCs are often spatially biased which may generate inaccuracies in SDMs. Here, we test how the distribution of NHCs and Ma...
Data
Belongs to paper Species Distribution Modelling: Contrasting presence-only models with plot abundance data by Gomes et al.
Data
Comparing the results of modelling the area of occupancy with MaxEnt and with inverse distance weighting (IDW). Analysis results for the predicted area of occupancy as calculated by Maxent and IDW methods. The analyses were conducted for 170 of all 227 hyperdominant species that had MaxEnt’s predicted environmental suitability significantly differ...
Article
Full-text available
Species distribution models (SDMs) are widely used in ecology and conservation. Presence-only SDMs such as MaxEnt frequently use natural history collections (NHCs) as occurrence data, given their huge numbers and accessibility. NHCs are often spatially biased which may generate inaccuracies in SDMs. Here, we test how the distribution of NHCs and Ma...
Article
Full-text available
Species distribution models (SDMs) are widely used in ecology and conservation. Presence-only SDMs such as MaxEnt frequently use natural history collections (NHCs) as occurrence data, given their huge numbers and accessibility. NHCs are often spatially biased which may generate inaccuracies in SDMs. Here, we test how the distribution of NHCs and Ma...
Chapter
Full-text available
Chapter 21 in the book: Mountains, Climate and Biodiversity (Eds. C. Hoorn, A. Perrigo and A. Antonelli). Over the past decade, species distribution models (SDMs) have become an indispensable item in the ecologist’s toolbox. SDMs, also known as ecological niche models, bioclimatic models or habitat suitability models, characterize the multivariate...
Chapter
Full-text available
Mycorrhizal symbiosis is an important driver of ecosystem functioning and biogeochemical cycling processes. Due to their wide distribution, three types of mycorrhizal symbiosis, arbuscular, ecto- and ericoid mycorrhizas, arguably play a prominent role in controlling ecosystem functioning at global scale. However, our understanding of the nature and...
Article
Full-text available
Alnus acuminata is a keystone tree species in the Yungas forests and host to a wide range of fungal symbionts. While species distribution models (SDMs) are routinely used for plants and animals to study the effects of climate change on montane forest communities, employing SDMs in fungi has been hindered by the lack of data on their geographic dist...
Article
Full-text available
Aims: The herb–shrub flora has been widely neglected in science and conservation policy throughout the world, so that this biodiversity component remains largely unknown. The objective of this study was to elucidate the spatial patterns of species richness and phytogeographic regions of the Cerrado herb–shrub flora, and to estimate the percentage o...
Article
Full-text available
In conservation studies, solely widespread species are often used as indicators of diversity patterns, but narrow-ranged species can show different patterns. Here, we assess how well subsets of narrow-ranged, widespread or randomly selected plant species represent patterns of species richness and weighted endemism in Gabon, tropical Africa. Specifi...
Technical Report
Full-text available
PRIDE (Drivers of Biodiversity RIse and DEmise) is an EU funded Innovative Training Network (ITN) that trains 15 early stage researchers (ESRs) over a period of 4 years. We study the evolution of unique Pontocaspian lake biota (molluscs, ostracods and dinoflagellates) in the Caspian Sea-Black Sea region integrating climate, geology and biological a...
Article
Full-text available
Species distribution models (SDMs) are widely used to predict the occurrence of species. Because SDMs generally use presence-only data, validation of the predicted distribution and assessing model accuracy is challenging. Model performance depends on both sample size and species’ prevalence, being the fraction of the study area occupied by the spec...
Method
Full-text available
This manual was produced by the Pontocaspian biodiversity RIse and DEmise (PRIDE) ITN programme with grant Agreement number: 642973 – PRIDE – H2020-MSCA-ITN-2014, modified after the ViBRANT Virtual Biodiversity Scratchpads Training Manual. Aim of this manual is to guide PRIDE partner institutions and regional stakeholders to effectively deposit and...
Article
Full-text available
AimThe aims of this study were (1) to assess the spatial distribution of orchid species richness in New Guinea, and (2) to examine patterns of species turnover in the orchid community through phytogeographical regionalization. We aimed to achieve these goals using botanical collection records, species distribution models (SDMs) and partitioning aro...
Article
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Aim: To analyse the underpinnings of historical drivers of diversity and their contributions to current distributions and future roles in a changing climate, we studied the relationship between ecological niche divergence and phylogenetic signal in tropical carnivorous pitcher plants. Location: Southeast Asia. Methods: Estimates of realized ecol...
Article
Full-text available
There are concerns that Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation (REDD+) may fail to deliver potential biodiversity cobenefits if it is focused on high carbon areas. We explored the spatial overlaps between carbon stocks, biodiversity, projected deforestation threats, and the location of REDD+ projects in Indonesia, a tropical co...
Article
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Shelled pteropods are planktonic gastropods that are potentially good indicators of the effects of ocean acidification. They also have high potential for the study of zooplankton evolution because they are metazoan plankton with a good fossil record. We investigated phenotypic and genetic variation in pteropods belonging to the genus Cuvierina in r...
Article
Full-text available
In 2010, Naturalis Biodiversity Center started one of the largest and most diverse programs for natural history collection digitization to date. From a total collection of 37 million specimens and related objects, 7 million relevant objects are to be digitized in a 5-year period. This article provides an overview of the program and discusses the ch...