Significance testing testate amoeba water table reconstructions

Richard J. Payne*, Kirill V. Babeshko, Simon van Bellen, Jeffrey J. Blackford, Robert K. Booth, Dan J. Charman, Megan R. Ellershaw, Daniel Gilbert, Paul D M Hughes, Vincent E J Jassey, Łukasz Lamentowicz, Mariusz Lamentowicz, Elena A. Malysheva, Dmitri Mauquoy, Yuri Mazei, Edward A D Mitchell, Graeme T. Swindles, Andrey N. Tsyganov, T. Edward Turner, Richard J. Telford

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

14 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Transfer functions are valuable tools in palaeoecology, but their output may not always be meaningful. A recently-developed statistical test ('randomTF') offers the potential to distinguish among reconstructions which are more likely to be useful, and those less so. We applied this test to a large number of reconstructions of peatland water table depth based on testate amoebae. Contrary to our expectations, a substantial majority (25 of 30) of these reconstructions gave non-significant results (P > 0.05). The underlying reasons for this outcome are unclear. We found no significant correlation between randomTF P-value and transfer function performance, the properties of the training set and reconstruction, or measures of transfer function fit. These results give cause for concern but we believe it would be extremely premature to discount the results of non-significant reconstructions. We stress the need for more critical assessment of transfer function output, replication of results and ecologically-informed interpretation of palaeoecological data.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)131-135
Number of pages5
JournalQuaternary Science Reviews
Volume138
Early online date15 Feb 2016
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 15 Apr 2016

Fingerprint

paleoecology
Amoeba
peatlands
water table
reconstruction
transfer function
statistical analysis
water
testing
statistical test
peatland
Significance Testing
Water
interpretation
cause
performance
Values

Keywords

  • Palaeoecology
  • Palaeohydrology
  • Protist
  • RandomTF
  • Testate amoeba
  • Transfer function

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geology
  • Global and Planetary Change
  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Archaeology
  • Archaeology

Cite this

Payne, R. J., Babeshko, K. V., van Bellen, S., Blackford, J. J., Booth, R. K., Charman, D. J., ... Telford, R. J. (2016). Significance testing testate amoeba water table reconstructions. Quaternary Science Reviews, 138, 131-135. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.quascirev.2016.01.030

Significance testing testate amoeba water table reconstructions. / Payne, Richard J.; Babeshko, Kirill V.; van Bellen, Simon; Blackford, Jeffrey J.; Booth, Robert K.; Charman, Dan J.; Ellershaw, Megan R.; Gilbert, Daniel; Hughes, Paul D M; Jassey, Vincent E J; Lamentowicz, Łukasz; Lamentowicz, Mariusz; Malysheva, Elena A.; Mauquoy, Dmitri; Mazei, Yuri; Mitchell, Edward A D; Swindles, Graeme T.; Tsyganov, Andrey N.; Turner, T. Edward; Telford, Richard J.

In: Quaternary Science Reviews, Vol. 138, 15.04.2016, p. 131-135.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Payne, RJ, Babeshko, KV, van Bellen, S, Blackford, JJ, Booth, RK, Charman, DJ, Ellershaw, MR, Gilbert, D, Hughes, PDM, Jassey, VEJ, Lamentowicz, Ł, Lamentowicz, M, Malysheva, EA, Mauquoy, D, Mazei, Y, Mitchell, EAD, Swindles, GT, Tsyganov, AN, Turner, TE & Telford, RJ 2016, 'Significance testing testate amoeba water table reconstructions', Quaternary Science Reviews, vol. 138, pp. 131-135. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.quascirev.2016.01.030
Payne RJ, Babeshko KV, van Bellen S, Blackford JJ, Booth RK, Charman DJ et al. Significance testing testate amoeba water table reconstructions. Quaternary Science Reviews. 2016 Apr 15;138:131-135. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.quascirev.2016.01.030
Payne, Richard J. ; Babeshko, Kirill V. ; van Bellen, Simon ; Blackford, Jeffrey J. ; Booth, Robert K. ; Charman, Dan J. ; Ellershaw, Megan R. ; Gilbert, Daniel ; Hughes, Paul D M ; Jassey, Vincent E J ; Lamentowicz, Łukasz ; Lamentowicz, Mariusz ; Malysheva, Elena A. ; Mauquoy, Dmitri ; Mazei, Yuri ; Mitchell, Edward A D ; Swindles, Graeme T. ; Tsyganov, Andrey N. ; Turner, T. Edward ; Telford, Richard J. / Significance testing testate amoeba water table reconstructions. In: Quaternary Science Reviews. 2016 ; Vol. 138. pp. 131-135.
@article{4fd2b1b86826418189e1a10560ba0018,
title = "Significance testing testate amoeba water table reconstructions",
abstract = "Transfer functions are valuable tools in palaeoecology, but their output may not always be meaningful. A recently-developed statistical test ('randomTF') offers the potential to distinguish among reconstructions which are more likely to be useful, and those less so. We applied this test to a large number of reconstructions of peatland water table depth based on testate amoebae. Contrary to our expectations, a substantial majority (25 of 30) of these reconstructions gave non-significant results (P > 0.05). The underlying reasons for this outcome are unclear. We found no significant correlation between randomTF P-value and transfer function performance, the properties of the training set and reconstruction, or measures of transfer function fit. These results give cause for concern but we believe it would be extremely premature to discount the results of non-significant reconstructions. We stress the need for more critical assessment of transfer function output, replication of results and ecologically-informed interpretation of palaeoecological data.",
keywords = "Palaeoecology, Palaeohydrology, Protist, RandomTF, Testate amoeba, Transfer function",
author = "Payne, {Richard J.} and Babeshko, {Kirill V.} and {van Bellen}, Simon and Blackford, {Jeffrey J.} and Booth, {Robert K.} and Charman, {Dan J.} and Ellershaw, {Megan R.} and Daniel Gilbert and Hughes, {Paul D M} and Jassey, {Vincent E J} and Łukasz Lamentowicz and Mariusz Lamentowicz and Malysheva, {Elena A.} and Dmitri Mauquoy and Yuri Mazei and Mitchell, {Edward A D} and Swindles, {Graeme T.} and Tsyganov, {Andrey N.} and Turner, {T. Edward} and Telford, {Richard J.}",
note = "Acknowledgements Elements of this project were supported by various funding agencies including: grant PSPB-013/2010 through the Swiss Contribution to the enlarged EU; project 017008 through EU FP6 (Millenium); grant 14-14-00891 from the Russian Scientific Fund; grant IE150173 from the Royal Society; NERC doctoral training grant NE/G52398X/1; NERC research grants NE/I022809/1, NE/I022981/1, NE/I022833/1 and NE/I023104/1; a DEL-NI doctoral training grant and the Worldwide Universities Network (project: Arctic Environments, Vulnerabilities and Opportunities). RJP is supported by the Leverhulme Trust through project RPG-2015-162.",
year = "2016",
month = "4",
day = "15",
doi = "10.1016/j.quascirev.2016.01.030",
language = "English",
volume = "138",
pages = "131--135",
journal = "Quaternary Science Reviews",
issn = "0277-3791",
publisher = "Elsevier",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Significance testing testate amoeba water table reconstructions

AU - Payne, Richard J.

AU - Babeshko, Kirill V.

AU - van Bellen, Simon

AU - Blackford, Jeffrey J.

AU - Booth, Robert K.

AU - Charman, Dan J.

AU - Ellershaw, Megan R.

AU - Gilbert, Daniel

AU - Hughes, Paul D M

AU - Jassey, Vincent E J

AU - Lamentowicz, Łukasz

AU - Lamentowicz, Mariusz

AU - Malysheva, Elena A.

AU - Mauquoy, Dmitri

AU - Mazei, Yuri

AU - Mitchell, Edward A D

AU - Swindles, Graeme T.

AU - Tsyganov, Andrey N.

AU - Turner, T. Edward

AU - Telford, Richard J.

N1 - Acknowledgements Elements of this project were supported by various funding agencies including: grant PSPB-013/2010 through the Swiss Contribution to the enlarged EU; project 017008 through EU FP6 (Millenium); grant 14-14-00891 from the Russian Scientific Fund; grant IE150173 from the Royal Society; NERC doctoral training grant NE/G52398X/1; NERC research grants NE/I022809/1, NE/I022981/1, NE/I022833/1 and NE/I023104/1; a DEL-NI doctoral training grant and the Worldwide Universities Network (project: Arctic Environments, Vulnerabilities and Opportunities). RJP is supported by the Leverhulme Trust through project RPG-2015-162.

PY - 2016/4/15

Y1 - 2016/4/15

N2 - Transfer functions are valuable tools in palaeoecology, but their output may not always be meaningful. A recently-developed statistical test ('randomTF') offers the potential to distinguish among reconstructions which are more likely to be useful, and those less so. We applied this test to a large number of reconstructions of peatland water table depth based on testate amoebae. Contrary to our expectations, a substantial majority (25 of 30) of these reconstructions gave non-significant results (P > 0.05). The underlying reasons for this outcome are unclear. We found no significant correlation between randomTF P-value and transfer function performance, the properties of the training set and reconstruction, or measures of transfer function fit. These results give cause for concern but we believe it would be extremely premature to discount the results of non-significant reconstructions. We stress the need for more critical assessment of transfer function output, replication of results and ecologically-informed interpretation of palaeoecological data.

AB - Transfer functions are valuable tools in palaeoecology, but their output may not always be meaningful. A recently-developed statistical test ('randomTF') offers the potential to distinguish among reconstructions which are more likely to be useful, and those less so. We applied this test to a large number of reconstructions of peatland water table depth based on testate amoebae. Contrary to our expectations, a substantial majority (25 of 30) of these reconstructions gave non-significant results (P > 0.05). The underlying reasons for this outcome are unclear. We found no significant correlation between randomTF P-value and transfer function performance, the properties of the training set and reconstruction, or measures of transfer function fit. These results give cause for concern but we believe it would be extremely premature to discount the results of non-significant reconstructions. We stress the need for more critical assessment of transfer function output, replication of results and ecologically-informed interpretation of palaeoecological data.

KW - Palaeoecology

KW - Palaeohydrology

KW - Protist

KW - RandomTF

KW - Testate amoeba

KW - Transfer function

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84962160970&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1016/j.quascirev.2016.01.030

DO - 10.1016/j.quascirev.2016.01.030

M3 - Article

VL - 138

SP - 131

EP - 135

JO - Quaternary Science Reviews

JF - Quaternary Science Reviews

SN - 0277-3791

ER -