JANOVEC, JOHN P.1*, BERRY BROSI2, and AMANDA K. NEILL1. 1Institute of Systematic Botany, The New York Botanical Garden, Bronx, NY 10458-5126; 2Institute of Economic Botany, The New York Botanical Garden, Bronx, NY 10458-5126. - Systematic research and the geospatial realm: examples from studies of Neotropical plants.
Modern geospatial science integrates spatial and attribute data to
visualize, manipulate, analyze, and present land-based resource
patterns. Geographic Information System (GIS) technology has been
applied in systematic studies of the Myristicaceae family and is now
being tested, at various spatial scales, in other families of
Neotropical plants, such as the Cucurbitaceae. We introduce
traditional mapping of species point data, and follow with the
addition of various informative geospatial data layers. We add Digital
Elevation Model (DEM) grids to demonstrate the importance of this data
layer in species mapping and in interpreting species distributions.
Results of univariate and multivariate analysis of quantitative and
qualitative morphological character data are plotted in a
"geomorphospace" using GIS grid analysis. Combined results
of this approach are used to demonstrate applications and implications
of GIS in the future of plant systematic research, with emphasis on
Neotropical species distribution and variation patterns.
Key words: Cucurbitaceae, Geographic Information System (GIS), geospatial analysis, mapping, Myristicaceae, Neotropical plants, systematics