Individual heterogeneity and identifiability in capture-recapture models

Animal Biodiversity and Conservation



Individual heterogeneity in detection probabilities is a far more serious problem for capture-recapture modeling than has previously been recognized. In this note, I illustrate that population size is not an identifiable parameter under the general closed population mark-recapture model Mh. The problem of identifiability is obvious if the population includes individuals with pi = 0, but persists even when it is assumed that individual detection probabilities are bounded away from zero. Identifiability may be attained within parametric families of distributions for pi, but not among parametric families of distributions. Consequently, in the presence of individual heterogeneity in detection probability, capture-recapture analysis is strongly model dependent.

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Individual heterogeneity and identifiability in capture-recapture models
Series title Animal Biodiversity and Conservation
Volume 27
Issue 1
Year Published 2004
Language English
Publisher Museu de Ciencies Naturals de Barcelona
Contributing office(s) Patuxent Wildlife Research Center
Description 5 p.
First page 87
Last page 91
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