Computational Modelling Group

Simulation modelling of habitat permeability for mammalian wildlife

4th October 2010
Research Team
Angela Watkins
Patrick Doncaster, Jason Noble

This project will focus on exploring the way that mammals interact with, and move around their environment. The work will focus on landscape-scale movements of two case studies; the jaguar in Belize, and the red-bellied beautiful squirrel in Argentina.

These species offer the opportunity to explore both sides of the conservation debate; how to enhance and facilitate animal movements between protected areas and existing populations (jaguars), and how to reduce the spread of an invasive species (squirrels).

This work constitutes a novel approach to utilising and integrating least-cost models and agent-based simulations with ground-truthed habitat data. The aim is to identify how the animals currently move through the landscape. Future work may involve scenario-testing of conservation strategies and/or identifying corridors that may serve as functional links between populations and suitable habitats.

Links to related works:

Belize Wildlife Corridor

Studying wildlife in Belize

Introduced squirrels in Argentina


Life sciences simulation: Ecology

Algorithms and computational methods: Agents, Geographic Information Systems

Visualisation and data handling software: ArcGIS

Software Engineering Tools: Eclipse, SVN

Programming languages and libraries: Java

Computational platforms: Mac OS X, Windows

Transdisciplinary tags: Complex Systems