Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Postmortem AM

One of the things that continually amazes me is the extent to which collecting simple data during management activities can be used to refine the management actions. It is one case in which the perfect is sometimes the enemy of the good - when an understandable desire to have the science "done well" prevents the collection of simple data that might be "good enough". In these days of GPS units in phones, it would be great to have the time and location of management actions, at a minimum.

That said, it is always nice when data collected during a management action is well analyzed. There's a nice example of that from the Outer Hebrides, where Thomas Bodey and colleagues used stable isotope analysis on whiskers collected from culled American Minks. The carcasses are in the hand - why not extract information from them, if it will help make the eradication campaign more efficient. The nice thing about an eradication campaign in an archipelago is the clear iterated nature of the decision making - distribution of effort in habitats on new islands provides a nice opportunity to apply lessons learned from previous campaigns.

And in other news, check out Methods.Blog, where Rob Freckleton is collecting samples of new methods in ecology and evolution from across a wide range of journals. He is also the editor of a new journal from Wiley-Blackwell devoted to methods in ecology and evolution. Looks interesting!

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