Predicting potential and actual distributions of species has become an active research area in biogeography. Recent debate about the appropriate term for these models – “niche models” or “species distribution models” – stems from confusion over the original niche theory on which they are both based. While niche theory itself has evolved in ecology, there are three main niche concepts that have remained the most relevant for niche models. These concepts and how they inform the development and practice of niche modeling are summarized.
Richardson, D., Castree, N., Goodchild, M.M., Kobayashi, A., Liu, W., and Marston, R.A.