U.S. Department of Agriculture: Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service


Date of this Version

July 2003


Published by Wildlife Society Bulletin 2003, 31(1):286-287.


On the grounds of "the need to get the basics right in wildlife field studies," Anderson (2001:1294-1297) recently included a general condemnation of the use of population indices. My purpose in this brief note is to add a few paragraphs of my thoughts to the comments by Anderson (2001) with respect to indexing animal populations. In general, I agree with the quantitative concepts described by Anderson (2001); however, I would like to place his comments into a broader perspective of general statistical rigor, without condemning the use of population indices if they are appropriately constructed.