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A predictive distribution model for Andinomys edax (Rodentia: Cricetidae) in Argentina

Keywords: maxent, northwestern argentina, potential distribution, sigmodontinae.

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Abstract:

we studied the distribution of andinomys edax (rodentia, cricetidae, sigmodontinae) in northwestern argentina. presence data obtained from field records, museum specimens and literature were used to model the potential distribution of this species. andinomys edax was known in argentina from only 41 occurrence localities, most of them restricted to jujuy province. here we add new localities from catamarca, jujuy, salta and tucumán provinces. we used the maximum entropy method (maxent) and seven environmental variables to produce a potential distribution map of the species. the 7.015 cumulative threshold (corresponding to the equal test of sensitivity and specificity) was the most efficient hypothetical distribution according to the omission rate. the area under the curve (auc) was of 0.987 for training data. the model indicates that a. edax is mainly distributed on the more humid eastern montane ranges in the region, associated to high altitude grasslands and ecotonal zones between 1500 and 4000 m in yungas, prepuna, puna and high andean environments. these results, as well as the known fossil record for the species in argentina, indicate the ecological plasticity of a. edax, present in the region at least since middle-upper pleistocene times.

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