Translator Disclaimer
13 August 2021 Temporal Assessment of Eastern Spotted Skunk Geographic Distribution
Amanda E. Cheeseman, Brian P. Tanis, Elmer J. Finck
Author Affiliations +

Spilogale putorius (Eastern Spotted Skunk) experienced range-wide population declines beginning in the mid-1900s with no clear understanding of the causal mechanism or whether such declines were associated with range contractions. Species-distribution models can provide a powerful framework to assess changes in landscape suitability in response to changing environmental conditions. Herein, we modeled time-stepped distributions of suitable environmental conditions for Eastern Spotted Skunks from 1938 to 2016 in Maxent, incorporating climate and land-cover predictors. Climate and land-cover variables reliably predicted landscape suitability of Eastern Spotted Skunks over time. We found a 37% decline in suitable area from historic predictions, consistent with reports of population declines in these areas. Our predicted landscape-suitability maps can be used to evaluate the current distribution of environmentally suitable conditions for the species as well as guide research and conservation efforts.

Amanda E. Cheeseman, Brian P. Tanis, and Elmer J. Finck "Temporal Assessment of Eastern Spotted Skunk Geographic Distribution," Southeastern Naturalist 20(sp11), 24-38, (13 August 2021).
Published: 13 August 2021

Get copyright permission
Back to Top