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Model comparison for a complex ecological system

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The ecological consequences of climate change and its interaction with other environmental pressures, such as nutrient pollution, are little understood. For freshwater ecosystems, knowledge of these combined effects is required for water resource management and in particular for successful implementation of the European Community Water Framework Directive 2000, which requires that all surface-waters should be at, or above, ‘good status’ by 2016. Statistical analysis of detailed long-term environmental data sets can be used to explore these combined effects. Loch Leven (Scotland) has been routinely monitored since 1967, providing one of the largest and most extensive of such data sets. Over this period there has been evidence of climate change and a period of eutrophication and recovery at the loch. Transfer functions, additive models and varying-coefficient models are used to explore the complex ecological system at Loch Leven with the aim of obtaining insight into the combined effects of climate change and eutrophication on water quality.

Keywords: Additive model; Climate change; Eutrophication; Transfer function; Varying-coefficient model

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: University of Glasgow, UK 2: Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, Edinburgh, UK

Publication date: July 1, 2007

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