A Review of Distribution Modeling in Ant (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) Biogeographic Studies


  • Priscila Santos Silva Universidade Estadual de Santa Cruz (UESC), Brazil https://orcid.org/0000-0001-5589-9090
  • Elmo Borges de Azevedo Koch Universidade Estadual de Feira de Santana, Brazil
  • Alexandre Arnhold Universidade Federal do Sul da Bahia, Brazil
  • Jacques Hubert Charles Delabie Universidade Estadual de Santa Cruz (UESC), Brazil




Correlative modeling, mechanistic modeling, conservation, invasive species, MaxEnt


The state of the art of Formicidae biogeographic studies using distribution modeling tools was reviewed. We aimed to evaluate how and for what purpose such tools were used in ant studies, as well as detecting modeling methods, algorithms, and variables selected for these studies. We analyzed papers published from 2001 to 2021 and focused on predicting invasion risks, conservation, and potential distribution of species. We also considered the mechanistic and correlative approaches, types of algorithms, and environmental variables. We observed that modeling is first used to predict invasion risks before conservation. The correlative approach was the most used, although it does not consider biotic or physiological aspects as the mechanistic approach does. The most used algorithm was Maxent, combining data set of occurrences with climatic variables. Nine studies used combinations of algorithms with consensual models. Research using modeling has been conducted more and more. However, it remains still incipient, mainly regarding conservation, as the current distribution of most of the Formicidae species is not well known. Although not frequently used in ant studies, distribution modeling represents an important approach for research in biogeography, ecology, and related areas. Certain perspectives could be useful, for example, for studying climatic changes, since possible variations in ant distributions, if anticipated, could suggest or guide further investigations or decision-making in public policies.


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How to Cite

Silva, P. S., Koch, E. B. de A., Arnhold, A., & Delabie, J. H. C. (2022). A Review of Distribution Modeling in Ant (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) Biogeographic Studies. Sociobiology, 69(4), e7775. https://doi.org/10.13102/sociobiology.v69i4.7775




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