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Integrating high-speed videos in capture-mark-recapture studies of insects
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  • Rassim Khelifa,
  • Hayat Mahdjoub,
  • Leithen M'Gonigle,
  • Claire Kremen
Rassim Khelifa
The University of British Columbia
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Hayat Mahdjoub
The University of British Columbia
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Leithen M'Gonigle
Simon Fraser University
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Claire Kremen
The University of British Columbia
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Abstract

Capture-mark-recapture (CMR) studies have been used extensively in ecology and evolution. While it is feasible to apply CMR in some animals, it is considerably more challenging in small fast-moving species such as insects. In these groups, low recapture rates can bias estimates of demographic parameters, thereby, handicapping effective management of wild populations. Here we use high-speed videos (HSV) of the adults of two large dragonfly species that rarely land and, thus, are particularly challenging for CMR studies. We specifically test whether HSV, compared to conventional eye observations, increases the “resighting” rates and improves the certainty of the estimates of survival rate, and the effects of demographic covariates on survival rates. We show that the use of HSV increases the number of resights substantially. HSV improved our estimates of resighting and survival probability which were either under- or overestimated with the conventional observations. HSV increased the accuracy of the estimates of effect sizes of important covariates (age and body size). Integrating HSV in CMR of highly mobile animals is valuable because it is easy, non-invasive, and has the potential to improve demographic estimates. Hence, it opens the door for a wide range of research possibilities on species that are traditionally difficult to monitor, including within insects, birds, and mammals.

Peer review status:IN REVISION

24 Nov 2020Submitted to Ecology and Evolution
24 Nov 2020Assigned to Editor
24 Nov 2020Submission Checks Completed
03 Dec 2020Reviewer(s) Assigned
15 Dec 2020Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
17 Dec 2020Editorial Decision: Revise Minor