Distribution & Occurrence

  • Graphic showing global shipping patterns

    Global shipping patterns emanating from the Panama Canal

Species distributions are at the core of all ecological and evolutionary processes, and the assemblage of particular species present in a region affect biological responses/resilience to climate change, storms, and other forces and perturbations.  Despite recognition that accelerating invasions and homogenization defines the Anthropocene, radically changing fundamental ecological processes, we currently lack a synthetic understanding of the broadscale patterns, emergent properties, and practical implications across both spatial and temporal scales. The amount and quality of contemporary occurrence data are a limiting resource that constrains both scientific understanding and resource management decisions.  While occurrence records are a cornerstone for understanding invasion dynamics and drivers, collection and synthesis of high quality data are easier said than done.  SERC research aims to increase the amount and quality of occurrence data, use these data to understand patterns and mechanisms of invasion, and make these data publically available for broader application and use by scientists, managers, policy-makers and the public.