Biodiversity & Conservation

, Volume 2, Issue 6, pp 667–680 | Cite as

DOMAIN: a flexible modelling procedure for mapping potential distributions of plants and animals

  • G. Carpenter
  • A. N. Gillison
  • J. Winter

This paper briefly reviews some limitations associated with the application of existing modelling procedures to conservation ecology, and describes a new procedure (DOMAIN) which avoids these problems. The procedure computes potential distributions based on a range-standardized, point-to-point similarity metric and provides a simple, robust method for modelling potential distributions of plant and animal species. DOMAIN offers advantages over similar methods in its ability to operate effectively using only presence records and a limited number of biophysical attributes. The use of a continuous similarity function gives DOMAIN increased flexibility as an heuristic tool, suitable for application in survey design, reserve selection and potential mapping of rare and common species. Potential distributions were computed for two Australian marsupial bettong species (Aepyprymnus rufescens ‘Gray’ and Bettongia tropica Wakefield) using DOMAIN and two alternative models. Of the three procedures, the DOMAIN model produced distribution patterns that were most consistent with the known ecology of the species, and most appropriate for survey design.


spatial modelling potential mapping distribution mapping Bettongs 


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Copyright information

© Chapman & Hall 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • G. Carpenter
    • 1
  • A. N. Gillison
    • 1
  • J. Winter
    • 2
  1. 1.CSIRO Tropical Forest Research CentreAthertonAustralia
  2. 2.RavenshoeAustralia

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