Shannon Wiener index

Indices based on the diversity values are very common. One of the most often used is the Shannon-Wiener index, developed by C. E. Shannon and W. Wiener. This index originates in information theory and assumes that individuals are sampled at random out of a community which is indefinitely large, and that all the species are represented in the sample.

The Shannon-Wiener index is calculated by the following equation:

In this equation, pi is the proportion of individuals found in species i. The values of this index can vary between 0 and 5. H' reaches a maximum value if the individuals of all species occur with the same density. Other indices based on the diversity value are for example the Pielou Evenness index, the Brilloun index, the Margalef index, the Berger-Parker index, the Simpson index, and ^-dominance curves.

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