Comparative demography

There’s great power in being able to draw comparisons among organisms, and demography is a great way to make such comparisons. Any organism, regardless of taxonomic affiliation or the habitat where it may be found, is faced with a vital decision: how to allocate limited resources to three universal currencies, survival, development and reproduction.

The SalGo team has made important contributions to comparative demography via our efforts archiving the demographic knowledge among animals and plants [link to Open Access tab here], as well as through our approaches to harness these data to ask ecological and evolutionary questions. Some of these include the study of trade-offs between vital rate functions, such as survival and development, whereas others include trans-habitat and trans-realm comparisons between terrestrial and marine life history strategies.


BES Special Feature
SalGo team members:
  • Connor Bernard
  • Sarah Bull
  • James Cant
  • Sam Gascoigne
  • Chrissy Hernandez
  • Maja Kajin
  • Thomas Merrien
  • Rob Salguero-Gómez
  • Gabriel Santos


Selected collaborators:

Selected publications:

Rodriguez-Caro R, Graciá E, Blomberg S, Cayuela H, Grace M, Carmona C, Pérez-Mendoza H, Giménez A, Salguero-Gómez R. Anthropogenic impacts on threatened species erode functional diversity in turtles and crocodilians. Nature Communications 14, 1542 DOI 10.1038/s41467-023-37089-5

Ohse B, Compagnoni A, Farrior C, McMahon S, Salguero-Gómez R, Roger N, Knight T. 2023. Demographic synthesis for global tree species conservation. Trends in Ecology and Evolution 3115 DOI 10.1016/j.tree.2023.01.013

Arroyo-Cosultchi G, Golubov J, Mandujano M, Salguero-Gómez R & Martinez J. 2022. What are the demographic consequences of a seed bank stage for columnar cacti. Population Ecology 64, 35-46 DOI 10.1002/1438-390X.12096

Compagnoni ALevin S, Childs D, Harpole S, Paniw M, Römer G, Burns J, Che-Castaldo J, Rüger N, Kunstler G, Bennett J, Archer R, Salguero-Gómez R* & Knight T*. 2021. Herbaceous perennial plants with short generation time have stronger responses to climate anomalies than those with longer generation time. Nature Communications 12, 1824 DOI 10.1038/s41467-021-21977-9

Kunstler G, Guyennon A, Ratcliffe S, Rüger N, Ruiz-Benito P, Childs D, Dahlgren J, Kandler G, Lehtonen A, Thuiller W, Wirth C, Zavala M & Salguero-Gómez R. 2021. Demographic performance of European tree species at their climatic edge. Journal of Ecology 109, 1041-1054 DOI 10.1111/1365-2745.13533

Salguero-Gómez R. 2021. Commentary on the life history special issue: The fast-slow continuum is not the end-game of life history evolution, human or otherwise. Evolution and Human Behavior 42: 281-283  DOI 10.1016/j.evolhumbehaf.2021.03.005

Capdevila P, Beger M, Blomberg S, Hereu B, Linares C & Salguero-Gómez R. 2020. Longevity, body dimension and reproductive mode drive differences in aquatic versus terrestrial life history strategies. Functional Ecology 34, 1613-1625 DOI 10.1111/1365-2435.13604

Healy K, Ezard T, Jones O, Salguero-Gómez R* & Buckley Y*. 2019. Animal life history is shaped by the pace of life and the distribution of age-specific mortality and reproduction. Nature Ecology & Evolution 3, 1217-1224 DOI 10.1038/s41559-019-0938-7

Beckman N, Bullock J, Salguero-Gómez R. 2018. High dispersal ability is related to fast life history strategies. Journal of Ecology 4, 1349-1362. DOI 10.1111/1365-2745.12989

Coutts S, Salguero-Gómez R, Csergõ A & Buckley Y. 2016. Extrapolating demography with climate, proximity and phylogeny: approach with caution. Ecology Letters 19, 1429-1438, DOI:10.1111/ele.12691

Salguero-Gómez R, Jones OR, Archer CA, Bein C♮, de Buhr H♮, Farack C♮, Gottschalk F♮, Hartmann A♮, Henning A♮, Hoppe G♮, Römer G♮, Ruoff T, Sommer V♮, Wille J♮, Zeh S♮, Vieregg D, Buckley YM, CheCastaldo J, Conde DA, Hodgson D, Scheuerlein A, Caswell H*, Vaupel JW*. 2016. COMADRE: a global database of animal demography. Journal of Animal Ecology 85, 371-384 Elton Prize of the British Ecology Society. Top 5 most downloaded article of Journal of Animal Ecology in 2016-18,  DOI 10.1111/13652656.12482

Kissling D, Guralnick R, Agosti D, Amengual J, Basset A, van Bodegom P, Bowser A, Cornelissen J, Denny E, Deudero S, Egloff W, Elmendorf S, Alonso García E, Jones K, Jones M, Jones O, Kattge J, Lear D, Navarro L, Pawar S, Pirzl R, Rüger N, Sal S, Salguero-Gómez R, Schigel D, Schulz K-S & Skidmore A. 2016. Towards global data products of Essential Biodiversity Variables (EBVs) on species traits. Nature Ecology & Evolution 2, 1531–1540 DOI 10.1038/s41559018-0667-3

Salguero-Gómez R, Jones OR, Archer CA, Buckley YM, Che-Castaldo J, Caswell C, Scheuerlein A, Conde DA, Baudisch A, Brinks E, de Buhr H, Farack C, Gottschalk F, Hartmann A, Henning A, Hoppe G, Römer G, Runge J, Ruoff T, Wille J, Zeh S, Vieregg D, Altwegg R, Colchero F, Dong M, Hodgson D, de Kroon H, Lebreton JD, Metcalf CJE, Neel M, Parker I, Takada T, Valverde T, Vélez-Espino LA, Wardle GM, Franco M* & Vaupel JW*. 2015. The COMPADRE Plant Matrix Database: an online repository for plant population dynamics. Journal of Ecology 103, 202-218. Top 5 most downloaded article of Journal of Ecology in 2016-18Highlight of the Plant Population Ecology section of the ESADOI 10.1111/13652745.12334

Salguero-Gómez R & Plotkin JB. 2010. Matrix dimensions bias demographic inferences: implications for comparative plant demography. The American Naturalist 176, 710-722. DOI 10.1086/657044


* Shared senior