Bringing the analysis of animal orientation data full circle: model-based approaches with maximum likelihood.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

In studies of animal orientation, data are often represented as directions that can be analyzed using circular statistical methods. Although several circular statistical tests exist to detect the presence of a mean direction, likelihood-based approaches may offer advantages in hypothesis testing - especially when data are multimodal. Unfortunately, likelihood-based inference in animal orientation remains rare. Here, we discuss some of the assumptions and limitations of common circular tests and report a new R package called CircMLE to implement the maximum likelihood analysis of circular data. We illustrate the use of this package on both simulated datasets and an empirical example dataset in Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha ). Our software provides a convenient interface that facilitates the use of model-based approaches in animal orientation studies.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Fitak, RR; Johnsen, S

Published Date

  • November 2017

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 220 / Pt 21

Start / End Page

  • 3878 - 3882

PubMed ID

  • 28860118

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC6514460

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1477-9145

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0022-0949

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1242/jeb.167056


  • eng