Sophie Hautphenne

EPFL & University of Melbourne, School of Mathematics and Statistics


The Markovian binary tree applied to the conservation of an endangered bird species

The Chatham Island black robin is an endangered songbird species that went nearly extinct in 1980. The population was able to recover thanks to intensive conservation efforts, and it reached about 250 adults in 2014. In this talk we model the black robin population using a continuous-time branching process called Markovian binary tree, which allows us to make an age-specific demographic analysis of the population. We estimate the model parameters based on a unique long-term dataset: we apply a non-linear regression method or a maximum likelihood method, depending on the precision of the available data. We discuss how the model outputs may be used within the field of conservation biology to inform future management of endangered island species.

Link to the paper on which the talk is based:https://arxiv.org/abs/1702.04281