Data for "Sounding out ecoacoustic metrics: avian species richness is predicted by acoustic indices in temperate but not tropical habitats"

Eldridge, Alice, Moscoso, Paola, Guyot, Patrice and Peck, Mika (2018) Data for "Sounding out ecoacoustic metrics: avian species richness is predicted by acoustic indices in temperate but not tropical habitats". [Dataset]

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This deposit contains the data for the paper A Multi-habitat, Comparative Evaluation of Ecoacoustic Indices for Biodiversity Monitoring: Acoustic Indices Predict Avian Species Richness in Temperate but not Tropical Habitats. (Ecological Indicators) The dataset contains a series of 1 min wav files recorded across UK and Ecuadorian habitats. Each one has 26 acoustic indices calculated on it, and a full list of avian species and abundances and GPS data for each sample site.


Affordable, autonomous recording devices facilitate large scale acoustic monitoring and Rapid Acoustic Survey is emerging as a cost-effective approach to ecological monitoring; the success of the approach rests on the development of computational methods by which biodiversity metrics can be automatically derived from remotely collected audio data. Dozens of indices have been proposed to date, but systematic validation against classical, in situ diversity measures. This study conducted the most comprehensive comparative evaluation to date of the relationship between avian species diversity and a suite of acoustic indices across a wide range of ecological conditions. Acoustic surveys were carried out across habitat gradients in temperate and tropical biomes. Baseline avian species richness and subjective multi-taxa biophonic density estimates were established through aural counting by expert ornithologists. 26 acoustic indices were calculated and compared to observed variations in species diversity. Five acoustic diversity indices (Bioacoustic Index, Acoustic Diversity Index, Acoustic Evenness Index, Acoustic Entropy, and the Normalised Difference Sound Index) were assessed as well as three simple acoustic descriptors (root-mean-square, spectral centroid and zero-crossing rate). Highly significant correlations, of up to 65%, between acoustic indices and avian species richness were observed across temperate habitats, supporting the use of automated acoustic indices in biodiversity monitoring where a single vocal taxon dominates. Significant, weaker correlations were observed in neotropical habitats which host multiple non-avian vocalizing species. Multivariate classification analyses suggest that AIs also track observed differences in habitat-dependent community composition and that each habitat has a distinct soundscape. Multivariate analyses of the relative predictive power of AIs show that compound indices are more powerful predictors of avian species richness than any single index and simple descriptors contribute to predicting avian diversity in multi-taxa tropical environments. Our results support the use of community level acoustic indices as a proxy for species richness and point to the potential for tracking of habitat-dependent changes in community composition. Recommendations for the design of compound indices for multi-taxa community composition appraisal are put forward, with consideration for the requirements of next generation, low power remote monitoring networks.

Item Type: Dataset
Additional Information: Sampling Methods (extract from paper) Acoustic surveys were carried out along a gradient of habitat degradation (1 forested, 2 regenerating forest and 3 agricultural land) in South East (SE) England and North Western (NW) Ecuador. The six sites (UK1, UK2, UK3, EC1, EC2, EC3) were sampled consecutively from May 6th - Aug 25th 2015. All UK sites were in the county of Sussex, in SE England, an area of weald clays (Fig. 2, left) and included ancient woodland (UK1), regenerating farmland with patches of woodland (UK2) and a downland barley farm (UK3).1 min mono audio recordings made every 15 minutes at three different habitats in the UK Ten day acoustic surveys were carried out consecutively at each study site using 15 Wildlife Acoustics Song Meter audio field recorders. Sampling points were arranged in a grid at a minimum distance of 200 m to minimise pseudo replication (the sound of most species being attenuated over this distance in all biomes). Altitudinal range of sample points across sites was minimised in order to prevent introduction of extraneous, confounding gradients (UK varied between 10 m – 50 m and Ecuador 130 m – 390 m). Recording schedules captured 1 min every 15 min around the clock for 10 days at each site, resulting in 960 recordings at each of 15 sample points for 3 habitat types in 2 different climates (86,400 1 minute recordings in total). Data across the 15 sample points was pooled; inter-site variation was not explored in the current analyses. In the UK 3½ hours of each dawn chorus was sampled starting at 1 hour before sunrise. This range was determined to capture the onset, progression and peak of the dawn chorus, creating a temporal gradient. The equatorial dawn chorus is more compact and was sampled for 2¼ hours starting 15 mins before sunrise, capturing a comparable chorus onset and peak.
Keywords: Ecoacoustics
Schools and Departments: School of Media, Film and Music > Music
SWORD Depositor: Mx Elements Account
Depositing User: Mx Elements Account
Date Deposited: 10 May 2021 13:33
Last Modified: 10 May 2021 13:33
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