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Kamran Almasieh, Kazem Negaresh, Mohammad Mahmoodi,
Volume 8, Issue 2 (7-2021)

Centaurea glastifolia, a plant species from the Asteraceae family, is distributed in the Northwest of Iran. This study carried out to determine suitable habitats and habitat connectivity of Centaurea glastifolia in three Provinces of West Azarbayejan, East Azarbayejan and Ardabil. Seven habitat variables and 36 presence points were selected for habitat modelling using six habitat distribution models of GLM, GAM, MARS, MaxEnt, RF and GBM. The ensemble map resulting from these models was used for habitat connectivity modelling using electrical-circuit method. Results of habitat evaluation revealed that suitable habitats of the species studied were mainly located in West Azarbayejan and east of Ardabil Provinces, for which distance from agricultural lands, mean annual temperature and distance from rangelands had the highest contribution to the model. Habitat connectivity modelling showed that the current density movement was highest in West Azarbayejan. Current density movement between East and Southeast of Ardabil was evaluated to be significant, whereas the current density movement between West Azarbayejan and Ardabil Provinces was relatively low. The high current density movement in West Azarbayejan indicates the species’ high dispersal ability in expanding its range across the area. The results of the current study could facilitate understanding of the distribution and dispersal of Centaurea glastifolia.

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