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Journal Articles Oikos Year : 2010

Capture-recapture models with heterogeneity to study survival senescence in the wild

Guillaume G. Péron
Pierre-André Crochet
Rémi Choquet
  • Function : Author
Roger Pradel
  • Function : Author
Jean-Dominique Lebreton
  • Function : Author


Detecting senescence in wild populations and estimating its strength raise three challenges. First, in the presence of individual heterogeneity in survival probability, the proportion of high-survival individuals increases with age. This increase can mask a senescence-related decrease in survival probability when the probability is estimated at the population level. To accommodate individual heterogeneity we use a mixture model structure (discrete classes of individuals). Second, the study individuals can elude the observers in the field, and their detection rate can be heterogeneous. To account for detectability issues we use capture-mark-recapture (CMR) methodology, mixture models and data that provide information on individuals' detectability. Last, emigration to non-monitored sites can bias survival estimates, because it can occur at the end of the individuals' histories and mimic earlier death. To model emigration we use Markovian transitions to and from an unobservable state. These different model structures are merged together using hidden Markov chain CMR models, or multievent models. Simulation studies illustrate that reliable evidence for survival senescence can be obtained using highly heterogeneous data from non site-faithful individuals. We then design a tailored application for a dataset from a colony of black-headed gull Chroicocephalus ridibundus. Survival probabilities do not appear individually variable, but evidence for survival senescence becomes significant only when accounting for other sources of heterogeneity. This result suggests that not accounting for heterogeneity leads to flawed inference and/or that emigration heterogeneity mimics survival heterogeneity and biases senescence estimates.
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Dates and versions

hal-03502442 , version 1 (25-12-2021)


  • HAL Id : hal-03502442 , version 1


Guillaume G. Péron, Pierre-André Crochet, Rémi Choquet, Roger Pradel, Jean-Dominique Lebreton, et al.. Capture-recapture models with heterogeneity to study survival senescence in the wild. Oikos, 2010. ⟨hal-03502442⟩


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