Presentation on theme: "Regional Impacts of Climate Change on Forests and bird communities"— Presentation transcript:
1 Regional Impacts of Climate Change on Forests and bird communities Stephen Matthews1,2, Louis Iverson2,Anantha Prasad2, Matthew Peters21School of Environment and Natural ResourcesOhio State University2USFS Northern Research Station
2 Today's topic Climate is changing and species are responding Conservation and management strategies that ignore these change will likely fail (Lawler et al. 2009)How can we begin to integrate climate change impacts into complicated realm of conservationMust address in stages and build our understandingBuilding broad-scale models is a logical startWorking with managers to translate results to “on the ground realities”
3 Eleven indicators that the climate is changing Land tempSea tempSea levelSnow coverState of the climate 2009, NOAA
4 Vertebrates: phenological responses to a changing climate AmphibiansCalling days earlier for half of species from ~1912 to Gibbs and Breisch 2001BirdsEarly arrivalBeaumont et al. 2006Hatching earlier Both and Visser 2005, GCB, Fig 4Such shifts can lead to mismatches in timingReviewed in Root et al. 2005Wood frog = 13 days
5 Wildlife distribution shifts linked to climate change Distributional shiftsMammals:Southern species increase and northern species decline, southern flying squirrel N 225 km since (Myers et al. 2009, GCB, Fig 3)Birds:winter range northern boundary shift 1.48 km/yrSorte and Thompson 2007breeding range also show northward trend 2.35 km/yrHitch and Leberg, 2006Expand this to include a list of speciesChin and thoms :distribeOr yohe parm
6 Future effects: Highly tied to the level of CO2 emissions Question cut??
7 Rising Temperatures in NE. US (annual average) Higher: oFLower: oFLarge difference between High and Low emissions!Annual temperatures across the Northeast have risen more than 1.5oF since 1970.Winters have been warming fastest, at 1.3oF per decade since 1970.Under the lower-emissions scenario, annual temperatures are projected to increase 3.5 to 6.5oF by 2100, and 6.5 to 12.5oF under the higher-emissions scenario.Figure 3. Observed and model-based changes in annual average temperature for the Northeast (in oF) relative to average temperature. Modeled historic and future temperatures represent the average of the GFDL, HadCM3, and PCM models.The Northeast is a temperate region, with highly distinct seasons and a wide range in annual temperatures. Currently, annual average temperatures range from 40oF in the northern part of the region up to 50oF in the southern part. Across a single year, temperatures can range from well below freezing in winter to over 100oF in summer.Given the day-to-day and year-to-year variability experienced in the Northeast, one year might be relatively warm and the following year could be colder than average. However, analysis of average annual and seasonal temperatures over longer periods of time shows a distinct upward trend. This is particularly true over the last few decades.Since 1900, annual temperatures across the Northeast have risen an average of 0.14oF per decade. From 1970 to 2002, however, the region has been warming at an average rate of 0.5oF per decade. This corresponds to an overall warming for the entire region during that time of 1.75oF on average—although of course any given year can still be warmer or cooler than average. The upward trend in winter temperatures is even greater, rising an average 1.3oF per decade since 1970.Over the next century, temperatures across the Northeast are projected to continue rising (Figure 3). In the next few decades (2010 to 2039), changes are similar under the lower- and higher-emissions scenarios, but by mid-century, temperature differences between the scenarios begin to appear. By the latter part of the century (2070 to 2099), the difference between the higher- and lower-emissions scenarios is a dramatic 4.5oF.
8 Expected growing season changes (for northern Wisconsin) HAD Hi+8 C (14F)PCM Lo+2 CJust looking at figures of projected in temp and precipitation it is clear that they do not move in consort and this additional constraint can not be explicitly modeled so we follow the work of others to characterize the novelty of the climate within the eastern us under climate change and apply these changes to the species distribution models.Growing season temperature higher and not much changein precipitation = more physiological stress on biota
9 Challenges of modeling species impacts of climate change Bottom line: we need to incorporate different approaches to quantify and “whittle away” at uncertainties to develop ecologically informed projections – modeling is a key tool to do thisFuture climate uncertaintyGCM variationsHuman-produced levels of CO2 uncertainSpecies likely to respond individuallyBiology not that well-known for many speciesModel validation far into future not possible
10 Current and future species management Our Approach: Climate Change Impacts on SpeciesTree &Bird AtlasesDISTRIB modelSpecies habitat predictionTree abundanceBird abundanceClimateEnvironmentForest densitySpecies traitsDataManagement guidelinesImplications & toolsCurrent and future species managementPotential migrationby 2100DISTRIB+SHIFTSHIFT modelSpecies colonizationprobabilitiesModFacsBiological factorsDisturbance factorsModel uncertaintyScoring systemfor tree speciesDECISIONSUPPORTFRAMEWORKIverson et al. 2011, EcosystemsMulti-stage modelling scheme
11 The role of climate in shaping vertebrate distributions Currie 1991Root 1988
12 But there is also a strong habitat component for most species Pur forest on feft anf waterm rightTherefore we use climate and individual tree species to build our 147 bird models
13 Important to note when interpreting these models! The models are predicting potential suitable habitat by year 2100 – not where the species will be.The DISTRIB model does not account for biotic interactions, other human or natural disturbances.
15 ? Examples of species with projected habitat increases Emissions scenariosLow High?Prothonotary WarblerBrown-headed NuthatchPhoto by Brian E. Small nut others Kevin T. Karlson
16 ? Examples of species with projected habitat decreases Emissions scenariosLow High?Black-throated Blue WarblerBlack-capped Chickadee
17 General trends of all 147 species across the eastern US Incidence change (Ratio)Mean Center Potential MovementKm (sd)PCMlo109 (64.3)Avglo142 (88.9)Avghi210 (139.5)Hadhi212 (149.9)Matthews et al Ecography
18 The Chicago ecosystem assessment provides one example of these data being summarized regionally to focus the results(Hellmann et al. 2010, J. Great Lakes Res.)Habitat Changes:Under high emissions130 species changes >=10%With 76 decliningWith 54 increasingUnder low emission116 species changes >= 10%64 declining52 increasingBulluts130 change 10%X increaseY decreaeSummer tanager
19 Are these data being used?? The Goal: Identify strategies and approaches to climate change adaptation and mitigationBridge the gap betweenscales of predictionmanagement activitieson National Forestsinteractions with thegreater communityAllows the user to modify the factors according to local char….Swanston et al. 2011
21 Modifying factorsMany other factors (biological and disturbance) come in to play to determine more likely outcomesWe rate biological (n=9) and disturbance (n=12) characteristics for positive or negative impactsGoal was to evaluate more realistic outcomes at regional and local levelsThe results from the multi-criteria framework can be applied to the results present today
22 Projected habitat declines Characteristics suggest high adaptability Red Maple:Projected habitat declinesCharacteristics suggest high adaptabilityBlack Oak:Projected habitat increasesPositive ModFac profile suggests it may be able to persist in harsh areasBalsam Fir:Negative ModFacAll metrics suggest it will likely face severe limits in eastern USIncreasing Adaptability to Climate Change?Matthews et al. 2011, For. Ecol. Manag.
23 Potential Changes for Tree Species The “Model Forest” Project Evaluated 73 species from the regionPut in to 8 classes of impactsClass 1: extirpated (1 species)Class 2: large decrease (12 species)Class 3: small decrease (6 species)Class 4: no change (6 species)Class 5: small increase (4 species)Class 6: large increase (17 species)Class 7: new entry-high and low emissions (11 species)Class 8: new entry-high emissions (16 species)Score each species for modification factors to help managers interpret potential impacts and suggest adaptation strategies
24 (Losers) (Stayers) (New Migrants) (Gainers) Class 1 Class 2 Class 3
26 Overall habitat change for the 7 major species groups in N Wisconsin by GCM/emission habitat totalPCMlo(mild)Hadhi(harsh)balsam fir4.8-3.6-4.4aspen16.8-8.2-14.3paper birch6-3.3-5.4jack pine3.1-0.8-1.5white and red pine4.7-2.9all oak10.56.811.3northern hardwood17-3.1-10CurrentHabitat% Change in Habitat
27 Ecosystem Vulnerabilities The potential changes in species composition may thus lead to a number of ecosystem vulnerabilities:Lowland hardwood forests (presently dominated by black ash) will be disrupted from drying and especially the emerald ash borer, and probably converted to red mapleLowland conifer forests (e.g., balsam fir), may be stressed more by dry late summers, disrupting that entire ecosystemSeveral ecosystems with species that have been recently declining (e.g., hemlock, paper birch, white spruce) will likely continue to declineVegetation changes will have significant effects on wildlifeSwanston et al. 2011
28 A few final thoughts…Modeling potential responses of 134 tree and 147 birds species using multi-stage methodologyContinues to provide new knowledge of species distributions and potential for changeCarry the research results forward to ensure that it is management relevant and assumptions are communicatedWhat species may be players: lists of species to evaluate?How might species get there?Do the species life history characteristics compliment or contradict the habitat changes?Must enter into an adaptive management framework moving forward: this includes monitoring to provide feedback loops.We are confronted with the challenge of understanding the response of ecological systems to changing landscapes. More than ever we need to consider how local management decisions fit into the distributions of target species.What are drivers, other methods
29 Thank you! Web site for most data presented today: Climate change atlasesSpecies-environment data for 147 birds and 134 treesPdfs of related papersAcknowledgementsThanks to USDA FS Northern Global Change Program for supportUS Forest Service Northern Research StationOhio State University