Using Species Proportions to Quantify Turnover in Biodiversity

Yuan Yuan*, Stephen T. Buckland, Phil J. Harrison, Serguei Foss, Alison Johnston

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)
97 Downloads (Pure)


Quantifying species turnover is an important aspect of biodiversity monitoring. Turnover measures are usually based on species presence/absence data, reflecting the rate at which species are replaced. However, measures that reflect the rate at which individuals of a species are replaced by individuals of another species are far more sensitive to change. In this paper, we propose families of turnover measures that reflect changes in species proportions. We study the properties of our measures, and use simulation to assess their success in detecting turnover. Using data on the British farmland bird community from the breeding bird survey, we evaluate our measures to quantify temporal turnover and how it varies across the British mainland.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)363–381
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Agricultural, Biological, and Environmental Statistics
Issue number2
Early online date6 Jan 2016
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2016


  • Biodiversity
  • Breeding bird survey
  • Species abundance distribution
  • Turnover measures

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences
  • General Environmental Science
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Statistics, Probability and Uncertainty
  • Statistics and Probability


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