[MARMAM] Three distance sampling workshops offered, Univ. of St. Andrews, August 2006

Eric Rexstad ericr at mcs.st-and.ac.uk
Tue Apr 25 00:58:27 PDT 2006

The Centre for Research into Ecological and Environmental Modelling
(CREEM) is hosting three linked workshops in the summer of 2006 in our
purpose-built facilities at the University of St Andrews, Scotland.  
The aim of these workshops is to train participants in the latest
methods for design and analysis of distance sampling surveys, including
line and point transects.  The workshops are taught by leading
researchers in the field, using industry-standard software.

The first workshop (3 days, 23-25 August) will run at an introductory
level, and will focus on "conventional" distance sampling methods, as
described in the standard reference book Introduction to Distance
Sampling.  The workshop will be a blend of theory and practice and
participants will learn how to use the program Distance.  Participants
will gain a solid grounding in both survey design and methods of
analysis for distance sampling surveys.

The second workshop (2.5 days, 28-30 August) will cover recent advances
in distance sampling research and software, as described in the book
Advanced Distance Sampling. It is intended for those already familiar
with conventional distance sampling methods (e.g., those who have
attended an introductory workshop).  Participants will learn the use of
covariates for modelling the detection function, double-platform methods
for when detection at the line or point is not certain, automated survey
design and adaptive sampling.  Participants will also learn the more
advanced features of Distance.

The third workshop (2.5 days, 30 Aug.-1 Sept.) will focus on methods of
predicting abundance or density of biological data using the "count"
method of Hedley and Buckland (2004, Chapter 4 of the Advanced Distance
Sampling book). In these situations variation in animal
density/abundance is modelled as functions of covariates such as land
cover type, bathymetry, altitude or depth, or other characteristics
collected during a distance sampling survey. General additive models
(GAMs) or general linear models (GLMs) will be fitted to estimated
densities along transects using a new analytical engine inside program
Distance. This is an advanced workshop for those already familiar with
distance sampling.

For all three workshops, participants are encouraged to bring their own
data sets, and can expect to do some preliminary analyses with their
data.  Participants intending to model their own data in the third
workshop will be required to have it formatted according to precise
specifications prior to arrival at St. Andrews.  Computer sessions take
place in our modern PC-classroom (attached to the seminar room);
participants can use our computers or bring their own PC laptops.

Further details, including registration forms and tariff, are available
at http://www.ruwpa.st-and.ac.uk/distance.workshops/.

Eric Rexstad
Research Unit for Wildlife Population Assessment
Centre for Research into Ecological and Environmental Modelling
University of St. Andrews
St. Andrews Scotland KY16 9LZ
+44 (0)1334 461833

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