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The Possingham Lab is in the Faculty of Science at The University of Queensland split between two schools – the School of Biological Sciences and the School of Maths and Physics. All of our work is directly supported by The University of Queensland via administration, facilities, grants and research infrastructure.

Most of our research is using decision science thinking to pose and solve conservation problems. We do odd bits of field work – often on birds. We like using models to predict the future, and we like to test those models with new and existing data. We like ecological theory, things that change in space and time and inventing clever ways of extracting information from old data. The mathematical and statistical tools we use are diverse, ranging from the basic to the complex.

Read about a few of our projects in the Research Themes section or for a more casual introduction to lab work – read a few issues of Decision Point.

Most importantly we try to do research that has impact, research that changes the way that the world works.  Our work has helped save hundreds of thousands of square kilometres of woodland and forest and informed the creation of many of the world’s marine protected area systems.

Who are the people the lab?  Anyone who thinks they are in the lab. We have lots of friends, both in the two centres Hugh directs – the ARC Centre of Excellence for Environmental Decisions (CEED) and the National Environmental Science Programme Threatened Species Recovery Hub - and in over 20 countries around the world. Many of them like to visit – lab meetings and talks are twice a week. If you want to join us, or visit us, go to the opportunities tab.

 group pic 2

Lab twitter feed:

saverygo RT @RadioNational: Sighting of the night parrot in WA - previously thought to be extinct - shocks birdwatching world https://t.co/chCA3SMuY
saverygo RT @pboesu: Some curlews use tools to eat albatross eggs (Illustration slightly embellished). https://t.co/Gkprn5cTXV #SeabirderSaturday H…
saverygo Great @ICCB2017 #Columbia presentations organized by @SCBBrisUQ! I can't wait to explore this biologically hyperdiv… https://t.co/QJDN8yUxSV
saverygo RT @imbe_noumea: Hey #seabirders! I'm looking for manufacturers of high quality burrowscopes for petrel studies. Any contact or advice? er…
saverygo @amtlabbe That's where we were! Small world. Yes- they aren't that bad. Thank goodness
saverygo @amtlabbe You got it! I'm party fascinated and partly grosses out by them
saverygo Ah, the joys and risks of hiking in a rainforest after the rain... (totally worth it). #Queensland #Australia https://t.co/OUUT2i5u0m
saverygo RT @PetrelStation: The presentation list for the upcoming #WSTC3 (World twitter seabird conference) is AMAZING! tune in April 12-14 #seabir
MariaBeger RT @justinshanes: Meanwhile, at today's meeting on feline healthcare... https://t.co/wApNyFS7jz
MariaBeger RT @Seasaver: Coral reefs might be in more trouble than we thought https://t.co/jftF6kDrYR @PopSci
MariaBeger RT @ScotMarineInst: EU student status, free tuition confirmed in Scotland. Announcement by ScotGov DFM John Swinney. https://t.co/NuwaXKhOT
MariaBeger Fishing for EPSRC Postdocs: Are you a EPSRC-PhD aiming to develop models in marine conservation science? https://t.co/UUS6o28e9u @mariabeger
MariaBeger @ProfTerryHughes brilliant!!! hopefully it comes in time to avoid mortality
MariaBeger Are marine and terrestrial species different? you have to wait for the paper to find out! @LeedsEcoEvo https://t.co/zMNcSgferF
MariaBeger I am fishing for good applicants for a fellowship!
MariaBeger Climate, connectivity, optimisation: Apply for a EPSRC Postdoc @mariabeger in marine conservation https://t.co/UUS6o28e9u @UniversityLeeds
BeyerHawthorne Philae lander en route to comet 67P right now. Exciting moment given the odds of even getting #Rosetta there.
BeyerHawthorne Landowners destroy habitat to dodge immenent protection legislation. Conervation planning must acount for this! http://t.co/SMBelGA6TW
BeyerHawthorne A major problem in conservation planning is finding ways of accounting for myopic reversals of protection. E.g. http://t.co/EV9MvhE87S
BeyerHawthorne Slam on the breaks. We have it all wrong: Tony Abbott adviser warns of threat of 'global cooling'. No, not Apr 1st. http://t.co/iXn80UgD7M
BeyerHawthorne Happy to see a woman has won this years Fields medal for the first time. http://t.co/qIoG6ED7q2
AChauvenet RT @SciGenderEquity: "Pouring more girls into this broken system is as useless as pouring water into a leaky bucket" https://t.co/JTS3yDtM7J
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AChauvenet New paper shows capacity shortfalls in 2/3 of #MarinePAs globally We need management #notjustarea - https://t.co/GRvxRyKMsv @ultimatemegs
AChauvenet RT @ARC_CEED: Resident mathemagician explains how high $ for rare harvested spp can eventually drive not so rare species extinct + a homocl…
AChauvenet RT @MVEG001: Australia can show its serious about doing best science+innovation by ensuring diverse #womeninSTEMM have equal opportunity to…
AChauvenet I think we agree at @ARC_CEED that girls do math, and do it well! @HugePossum @ultimatemegs @kerrie_a_wilsonhttps://t.co/RpHrO2iYww
AChauvenet RT @ARC_CEED: In case you missed it, @PLOSONE article on protection equality in #conservation planning by @AChauvenet @cdkuempel @MariaBege
AChauvenet RT @Protohedgehog: If you haven't tried this yet give it a whirl! It's basically like Google Scholar/ResearchGate but legal & integrated. A…
AChauvenet @megcevans @kerrie_a_wilson @LSEforBusiness I am sure someone will, but that won't be me !
NRMecon RT @AChauvenet: New paper shows capacity shortfalls in 2/3 of #MarinePAs globally We need management #notjustarea - https://t.co/GRvxRyKMsv
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NRMecon RT @GMMace: MPA effectiveness related 3x more to staffing & resources than bio, geo or eco factors. https://t.co/KqMe5tZTod https://t.co/nc
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NRMecon Life history strategies in the marine and terrestrial realms @DRobcito @SheffieldAPS @MariaBeger @MonashUni https://t.co/cMyYtI4tGI
NRMecon Congratulations to Rebecca @AREatUWA on finishing her #PhD https://t.co/520F3V5ha2
NRMecon How to stop 'flipping' (and write a good to-do list) This was a great one! @ARC_CEED https://t.co/rolzNOAMnp via @thesiswhisperer
NRMecon Get free native plants from the council @ARC_CEED @brisbanecityqld https://t.co/sSOhIT4Or8
biodiversityBD Devastating but engaging news piece on the state of the Great Barrier Reef https://t.co/P5PA3W0U79 @Nicki__S #TheProjectTV
biodiversityBD And the winner for "best moustache and dancing gorilla-man" @Eurovision 2017 is... ITALIA!!! Good luck Francesco!!! https://t.co/UmYTtVFAfv
biodiversityBD Wow! As a teen, @BrittanyMWenger created a neural network to improve breast cancer diagnosis. So inspiring! https://t.co/YXeWuUJlvd
biodiversityBD RT @SenatorMRoberts: How should government spend $5 billion of taxpayer money currently used on green energy
biodiversityBD @YumMusings But we remembered another notable birthday! Right? Right? :-D
biodiversityBD Malthus introduced the geometric growth concept to legitimise removal of social welfare. Iniquitous in social science, indelible in ecology
biodiversityBD @YumMusings oh-mah-gersh, look at him! *gush* https://t.co/QjaYMSjt7s
biodiversityBD RT @TaraGMartin: Observed impacts of climate change - from genes to biomes to people @cyclonewatson @BrettScheffers https://t.co/JhvzQBjHXs
biodiversityBD RT @TSCommissioner: Awesome to spend time with 300 Australians fighting #extinction driven by invasive species today. Thanks for having me…
biodiversityBD @Barnaby_Joyce, some good points but there's room for improving efficiency before clearing more habitat. What's the line for nature? #auspol
MattHHolden @duffy_ma exact same time as submitting to a journal. There is plenty of time while out for review to receive feedback.
MattHHolden RT @MariaBeger: Fishing for EPSRC Postdocs: Are you a EPSRC-PhD aiming to develop models in marine conservation science? https://t.co/UUS6o
MattHHolden If #math wrote letters. So many good ones. Math & I apparently have similar personalities https://t.co/R91ZrrO4ij https://t.co/13y5S5cTOv
MattHHolden RT @AChauvenet: I think we agree at @ARC_CEED that girls do math, and do it well! @HugePossum @ultimatemegs @kerrie_a_wilson @MattHHolden h…
MattHHolden RT @saunders_meg: Access to nature reduces depression and obesity “+10 trees/block provides benefits = $10,000 or being 7 yrs younger” http…
MattHHolden RT @MartinaDFonzo: Ignoring presence of downward black-swans events underestimates extinction risk in animal populations https://t.co/rUGY6
MattHHolden @stevenstrogatz a paper about a homoclinic fish and fishing
MattHHolden My blog about a homoclinic fish (ht @TrevorABranch). Big harvested pops can cross an "Allee threshold" to extinctio… https://t.co/yyl5Qvjwxu
cdkuempel RT @ConversationEDU: What's in a name? From the archives: giving dangerous weather a human name makes us more wary. #tcdebbie https://t.co
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cdkuempel RT @AlongsideWild: Every day @SUBWAY sells literally millions of sandwiches. That's a lot of single-use plastic bags. What are you doing to…
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cdkuempel Why language matters: Calling someone a girl vs. a woman https://t.co/fFlMakyoAz #unconciousbias #somethingtothinkabout #mayimbailik
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cdkuempel RT @ARC_CEED: Great talk by Kat Shea from @penn_state on her work on #disturbance management & #InvasiveSpecies. https://t.co/7Y1qGtPS31
cdkuempel RT @AChauvenet: New paper shows capacity shortfalls in 2/3 of #MarinePAs globally We need management #notjustarea - https://t.co/GRvxRyKMsv
cdkuempel RT @Nicki__S: Great story @theprojecttv on climate change and the GBR. Climate policy MUST be a priority @JoshFrydenberg https://t.co/Slfhg
cdkuempel RT @DavidGillMarine: New @Nature study: most #MPAs protect fish, but lack of staff & $$ limit success globally https://t.co/26ZmqLuoFh
cdkuempel RT @ARC_CEED: Important to getting $ for #conservation is recognizing politics matter. New article w/@AlexKusmanoff @Ascelin @nooshin_t @…
cdkuempel RT @WCSNewsroom: Remembering the Plight of Africa's Forest #Elephants on #IntlForestDay https://t.co/wpwJfXpiLL #forestelephants https://t.…
kwekings Tldr: facts will not change minds, but curiosity might. https://t.co/p2EO1hhzpu
kwekings Singapore kids find inner calm through mindful breathing https://t.co/F9aPZ9PSRy
kwekings Reconstructing the invasion history of a tree using a snapshot of current distribution and growth rates https://t.co/FutApm95gt
kwekings Fortune favors the well read https://t.co/zD27cP1gF0
kwekings Hyphens, or not? Bird taxonomy https://t.co/CmcRhX01OY
kwekings Scuttle fly, mosquito larvae, microbes living in #Nepenthes plant pitchers help digest 'prey': Lam Weng Ngai's Hons https://t.co/6z2KtjJJtp
kwekings Retweeted Richard Vize (@RichardVize): How world cities are facing up to health challenge; my @GdnHealthcare... https://t.co/VJp2H34Xdl
kwekings RT @RichardVize: How world cities are facing up to health challenge; my @GdnHealthcare analysis drawing on @markbritnell global study https…
kwekings At risk elsewhere thanks to the songbird trade, the straw-headed bulbul bucks the trend in Singapore with an... https://t.co/xweIe7Ylpx
kwekings At risk elsewhere thanks to the songbird trade, the straw-headed bulbul bucks the trend in Singapore with an increa… https://t.co/c4W8g2Tuit
BonMappin RT @GMMace: MPA effectiveness related 3x more to staffing & resources than bio, geo or eco factors. https://t.co/KqMe5tZTod https://t.co/nc
BonMappin RT @JAppliedEcology: To grow cities at least cost to #nature, couple land-sparing housing with habitat #restoration @LydiaCollas https://t.…
BonMappin RT @environmentinst: You cant just map off ocean and call it marine park, Money and People are needed https://t.co/ryYkO3yrw7
BonMappin RT @ultimatemegs: The data is in #MPAs need management staff and capacity #notjustarea https://t.co/znxvqPZaQo but almost 2/3 lack sufficie…
BonMappin RT @CarlaWildlife: A global systematic approach to road development will transcend the current "death by 1000 cuts" approach https://t.co/A
BonMappin RT @CarlaWildlife: Major impacts on high profile protected areas are expected from major proposed road projects in Africa https://t.co/1XZG
BonMappin John Woinarski sums up why #prevent #extinctions @TSR_Hub https://t.co/b8pF8mp1vo Australia should be doing better… https://t.co/fAwapQhhaH
BonMappin RT @JendallKones: Oz govt policies have failed the GBR. Could a world heritage in danger listing be a wake up call? @Nicki__S https://t.co/
BonMappin RT @RichardMcLellan: “We need to specifically target #ProtectedAreas to places where habitats are disappearing before it is too late.” http…
BonMappin Some great articles here by @m_dimarco @cdkuempel @AChauvenet @cyclonewatson and others from @ARC_CEED https://t.co/yjzuSwAhpd
mainambui RT @AndrewKSkidmore: New #remotesensing vegetation index for GPP in @sciencemagazine Advances - an adjustment of NDVI using scene NIR https…
mainambui RT @AndrewKSkidmore: Scholarships for #PhD #postdoc researchers @EUFAR_science 2 wk course on #remotesensing essential biodiversity variabl…
mainambui RT @mainambui: @ITCAlumni @SIS_MQ great to reconnect with @AndrewKSkidmore during his talk @EnvScMQ on 'Remote sensing of Essential Biodive…
mainambui @ITCAlumni @SIS_MQ great to reconnect with @AndrewKSkidmore during his talk @EnvScMQ on 'Remote sensing of Essentia… https://t.co/YbPxSfff26
mainambui RT @NOAAClimate: What happens when ENSO's influence combines with other climate phenomena? https://t.co/WR7InNo1cO https://t.co/gU6jul71hs
mainambui RT @emilysdarling: Mark your calendars, the next @WIOMSA Symposium is in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania Oct 30 - Nov 4, 2017 #coral #seagrass #man
mainambui @bluecology perhaps package 'sjPlot'?
mainambui @TheWCS @EnvScMQ @ARC_CEED training hydrologists & water managers in Iringa - S. Tanzania on using R for hydrologic… https://t.co/b8GU6PC16S
mainambui @ITCAlumni @LibITC I dont..cant' access my own pdf
mainambui @ITCAlumni @LibITC ..for instance, alumni accounts arent enabled to access academic outputs
j_a_mcgowan RT @OpenChannelsOrg: The Nature Conservancy is hiring a Marine Conservation Manager in South Florida https://t.co/CysV6DAtlW #marine #scie
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j_a_mcgowan RT @DavidGillMarine: Only 35% of #MPAs report acceptable $$ levels; only 9% with adequate staff for management.@nature study @ultimatemegs
j_a_mcgowan Chile’s new ‘route of parks’ aims to save the wild beauty of Patagonia https://t.co/fRn6EfNZsY
j_a_mcgowan Fantastic day on #Pridelands w/ @wild_ark in S Africa. Capped the day off by meeting this friendly Rock scorpion. https://t.co/FyqVoFl0zi
j_a_mcgowan RT @MariaBeger: Fishing for EPSRC Postdocs: Are you a EPSRC-PhD aiming to develop models in marine conservation science? https://t.co/UUS6o
j_a_mcgowan RT @FAOfish: More than half of the #fish consumed worldwide is produced by #aquaculture & #UNFAO estimates that this figure will reach 62%…
j_a_mcgowan RT @wild_ark: Amazing new discovery! https://t.co/MabNoIaU5a
j_a_mcgowan RT @ARC_CEED: In case you missed it, @PLOSONE article on protection equality in #conservation planning by @AChauvenet @cdkuempel @MariaBege
j_a_mcgowan RT @ProfTerryHughes: AAAS Science: "There’s only one way to save the Great Barrier Reef", scientists conclude - deal with climate change ht…
MorenaMills RT @ICCB2017: TODAY is the final day to submit SCB Service Award nominations! Recipients will be recognized at #ICCB2017 https://t.co/v3A3V
MorenaMills RT @verissimodiogo: What if the premise driving your behavior change effort turns out to be false? https://t.co/SugEVOdykP #foodforthought
MorenaMills @BeccaEShort it was great to meet you! Thanks for coming to @imperialcollege. I'll hopefully see you around soon!
MorenaMills @anjgoswami it was great to be on the panel with you! Thanks for joining us! @imperialcollege
MorenaMills Our @imperialcollege MSc in Conservation Science students organised an incredible field trip to Doñana Park in Spai… https://t.co/KXvWhkp89v
MorenaMills In honor of women's day this week, here are the women that inspire me: 1) Wangari Maathai https://t.co/wKj4kgCCmh
MorenaMills Equality in the Natural Sciences: Increasing Gender Parity in the Lab and in the Field. Panel discussion… https://t.co/LfDfu0DOvq
MorenaMills Why facts don't change our minds? https://t.co/snox3DZgT6
HugePossum RT @spottedcatshark: Lower Adelaide River NT supports juvenile @IUCNRedList threatened #shark & rays: River Sharks, Sawfish, Winghead Shark…
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HugePossum RT @nature_careers: #Emprego em #Delmont, NJ Coastal Science Specialist - 45230 na The Nature Conservancy https://t.co/O9SSbVndPU #Ciência
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HugePossum RT @j_a_mcgowan: Chile’s new ‘route of parks’ aims to save the wild beauty of Patagonia https://t.co/fRn6EfNZsY
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HugePossum The listing of a species is a scientific rule-based process #alternativefacts @Barnaby_Joyce @IUCNRedList https://t.co/v2WYJDIRFu
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HugePossum Ecosystem services postdoc in New Zealand https://t.co/fQQX8MY46N #biodiversity #postdocjob
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HugePossum RT @SCBBrisUQ: Join our #TweetStorm April 1 lead up to #EarthDay & @ScienceMarchBNE. Use #EarthOptimism to celebrate achievements in scienc…
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HugePossum RT @StephStoneSF: Congratulations to Emily Sohn @tidepoolsinc on winning a 2017 ASJA Award for this @biographic piece! https://t.co/kkl6Ouz
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HugePossum RT @nature_careers: We're #hiring! Click to apply: Global Managing Director of Marketing Technology - 45195 - https://t.co/O4lHL1Gfmp #Thin
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HugePossum RT @kate_mkg: Hi! I'm Kate. I study how plant-pollinator interactions respond to changes in climate. I'm an #actuallivingscientist and I #D
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HugePossum RT @ScienceMarchAu: Australia's first $100 note was released 33 years ago today. Theme was scientific achievement, featuring astronomy & An…
RKRunting Sad to see Jeffrey Beall's blog gone. Such a useful resource! Who will keep an eye on predatory publishers now? https://t.co/JPkYjwri0K
RKRunting Having a great time at the @oceaniaesforum booth at #2016ACES https://t.co/PFq1qzR9b6
RKRunting Congrats @kerrie_a_wilson - Life Scientist of the Year! https://t.co/GJt0QiujMD
RKRunting RT @oceaniaesforum: Hear ye! Hear ye! The call for Town Hall Meetings is now open! Town Hall Meetings offer a sounding board for... https…
RKRunting RT @kerrie_a_wilson: An overview of our research on Borneo https://t.co/49uwBXOHJc
RKRunting RT @LauraEllenDee: Why functional diversity can help #EcosystemServices withstand more variable #temperatures: https://t.co/4yaUL3EgH4 http…
RKRunting Great new #ECR paper on incorporating socio-ecological systems into restoration planning https://t.co/wT8U7KcnSZ @ARC_CEED
RKRunting Australia is now a global hotspot for land clearing. I support a call for stronger laws to #ProtectHabitat! https://t.co/BebIpzDRcN
RKRunting RT @megcevans: New paper by the always impressive Jessie Wells: mapping impacts and perceptions of flooding in #Borneo @emeijaard https://t…
RKRunting Great new paper: #carbon can financially out-compete #OilPalm in floodplain landscapes. https://t.co/zftG44fZIn
christhebirder RT @HugePossum: The listing of a species is a scientific rule-based process #alternativefacts @Barnaby_Joyce @IUCNRedList https://t.co/v2W
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christhebirder .@megcevans haha so NASA is a trusted source on bible facts but not climate science?
christhebirder RT @Forest_and_Bird: An Australian butterfly never before recorded in New Zealand has been spotted in Canterbury. https://t.co/yjmABiS0TT h…
christhebirder Just a reminder that despite media hyperbole, we were pretty sure Night Parrot were still in WA due to the Fortescu… https://t.co/cvhujDDb39
christhebirder RT @staffo_sez: Koorangie State Game Reserve has now been closed to hunters due to deplorable behaviour on weekend. Pressure to abandon sea…
christhebirder @Blair__Parsons @GreeningAust @WAParksWildlife @RangelandsNRM Great! The Pilbara definitely needs all the conservation it can get
christhebirder RT @austmus: On Lord Howe Island Australian Museum scientists have discovered a #species of beetle not seen in nearly 140 years: https://t.…
christhebirder RT @ultimatemegs: Check out new #ecrpaper @j_ringma uses extinction risk to prioritise fences 4 #oz #mammals #notjustarea or presence https…
christhebirder RT @SenatorLudlam: #estimates bureaucrats fail to produce special secret classified cockatoo surveys - but we're close https://t.co/tvWvUMD
christhebirder @mike_young00 I believe it's being discussed but I'm not involved so don't know where that is at. If you can get us funding...? ;-)
vivtulloch New #marxan prioritisation incl. probability of vegetation variability frm #climatechange in #canada @ARC_CEEDhttps://t.co/zbg3v1S637
vivtulloch RT @megcevans: Based on the volume and quality of her work I am convinced @ayeshatulloch never sleeps #ESA16 (or she has a twin...) @vivtul
vivtulloch RT @HugePossum: Which #coral reefs are a priority for #marineconservation when there are land-based threats https://t.co/FZqYvQ0hoH #marxan
vivtulloch @HugePossum we need actions not hotspots maps, translates humans hopes dreams and fears about coral reef management into maths #ICRS2016
vivtulloch RT @bluecology: Oil palm expansion is huge in tropics - potential massive #ridgetoreef impact on coral reefs @vivtulloch #ICRS2016
vivtulloch RT @bluecology: Marine protected areas have been key mgmt approach for coral reefs, but don't stop pollution! Need #ridgetoreef mgmt @vivtu
vivtulloch Need to act now with the best data available to guide management action and prevent further reef decline @bluecology #ICRS2016
vivtulloch @bluecology new ridge-to-reef approach solves disconnect btw academic & applied management needs #ICRS2016 https://t.co/RYQOWxEsUc
rubenvli RT @HugePossum: If you thought natural world heritage sites were safe, think again @cyclonewatson @jamesecology https://t.co/4S0ORdUDLf
rubenvli Complementing expert priorities and stakeholder preferences for marine management of Moreton Bay #MBQR2016.@NRMecon https://t.co/Oh0jMVVbOL
rubenvli RT @JAppliedEcology: Coarse spatial resolutions ⬇ commission errors in species ranges but ⬆ #conservation planning costs https://t.co/Jp8y7

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