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Understanding and mitigating the impacts of altered temperature and precipitation regimes on the function and biodiversity of rangeland communities April.

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Presentation on theme: "Understanding and mitigating the impacts of altered temperature and precipitation regimes on the function and biodiversity of rangeland communities April."— Presentation transcript:

1 Understanding and mitigating the impacts of altered temperature and precipitation regimes on the function and biodiversity of rangeland communities April 15 th, 2008 Stakeholders Meeting

2 Objectives of Today Introduce researchers, supporting organizations, stakeholders, and other interested parties Provide an overview of project objectives, progress to date, and future goals. Exchange ideas between stakeholders and research team

3 Project Objectives Understand how linkages between aspects of climate change and native rangeland ecology. Use this information to develop management suggestions to mitigate the negative aspects of climate change in these systems. Disseminate this information amongst stakeholders, the research community, and other interested parties

4 Research Team

5 Understanding Interactions Precipitation Warming Rising CO 2 Grazing Carbon Sequestration? Forage Production?

6 Experimental Design

7 Field Sites Kinsella, AB PFRA GAP Community Pasture, SK Riding Mountain NP, MB

8 Warming Treatment

9 Precipitation

10 Defoliation

11 020 cm Soil Respiration Collar Radiation Shields 13 2 PRS Probes Environmental Monitoring

12 Vegetation Sampling (Non-Destructive)

13 Vegetation Sampling (Aboveground) Biomass CalibrationHarvestDefoliation

14 Vegetation Sampling (Belowground)

15 Soil Chemistry Sampling

16 Microbial Respiration

17 Invertebrate Sampling

18 Additions % precipitation addition treatment Minirhizotron imaging

19 Here come the grad students!

20 Shannon White

21 Introduction Little research has explored the effects of climate change and grazing on vegetation in temperature grasslands Critical for land managers Following a disturbance, seed bank and seed rain influences may become important factors in the formation of plant communities

22 Research Questions 1) How will climate change (temperature and precipitation) interact with defoliation to alter primary production and associated forage quality in northern temperate grasslands? 2) How will these changes cause shifts in plant community composition and range health? 3) How will these changes alter the community reproductive output? 4) What role will current year seed rain, versus seed bank, play in population dynamics? 5) How will these changes alter subsequent germination and recruitment?

23 Methods 1) Primary production and forage quality 2) Community composition and range health

24 Methods 3) Reproductive output 4) Seed rain, versus seed bank 5) Germination and recruitment

25 Questions?

26 Samson Nyanumba

27 Education: University of Nairobi (Kenya) Ben Gurion University of the Negev (Israel)

28 Litter decomposition and, Carbon and Nitrogen flux

29 29 Decomposition of litter (including root litter) contribute approximately 70% to the total annual carbon flux Climate Soil organisms Litter decomposition Litter quality (1) (3) (2) Climate > Litter quality > Soil organisms

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31 31 Research questions 1. Do climate effects and defoliation interact to affect litter decomposition, and belowground carbon storage? 2. How do rates of soil flux (e.g. N mineralization) change in response to defoliation and climate effects?

32 Behnaz Attaeian

33 Biological Fingerprints of Climate Change and Grazing Management on Carbon and Nitrogen Cycling

34 1- How warming, precipitation and defoliation would affect composition and function of soil microbial community in rough fescue grassland? 2- How warming, precipitation and defoliation regulate in situ soil carbon and nitrogen dynamics in rough fescue grassland?

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36 1- Soil properties 2- Rangeland productivity 3- Rangeland health 4- Environmental policies: carbon trading carbon trading

37 "We accept the views of most scientists that enough is known about the science and environmental impacts of climate change for us to take actions to address its consequences." Business Environmental Leadership Council, Pew Center on Global Climate Change

38 Jeffrey Newton

39 Sint Maarten?

40 Education Wageningen University (Netherlands) Dutch Ecological Institute (NIOO)

41 Research question What is the effect of climate change on (rangeland) soil arthropod communities? MicrobivorePredatorFungivore

42 Soil Critters Species richness to date: 40 RRTU’s out of <1600 individuals Abundance e.g. Fescue grassland (Stavely, AB) Mites: 426,000/ m^2 (0-8cm depth) Springtails: 6,000/ m^2 (0-8cm depth)

43 Organic C (detritus) decomposition Temporary nutrient storage Fungal propagule dispersers

44 Field Sites – AB (Kinsella) 240 mm precipitation during field season (May-Oct) 32 vascular plant spp. Agropyron smithii, Stipa curtiseta dominant grasses (Carex spp. also abundant) Artemisia frigida, Oxytropis campestris most common forbs Koeleria macrantha, Festuca hallii, Bouteloua gracilis also common

45 Field Sites – SK (GAP Pasture) 260 mm precipitation during field season (May-Oct) 32 vascular plant spp. Agropyron smithii, Stipa curtiseta dominant grasses (Carex spp. also abundant) Artemisia frigida, Sphaeralcea coccinea most common forbs Bouteloua gracilis, Koeleria macrantha also common

46 Field Sites – MB (Riding Mountain) 309 mm precipitation during field season (May-Oct) 44 vascular plant spp. Poa secunda dominant grass Galium boreale, Monarda fistulosa most common forbs Achillea millefolium, Artemisia ludoviciana, Aster laevis, Rosa arkansana, Solidago rigida, Symphoricarpos occidentalis, Thalictrum venulosum, Vicia americana also common

47 Air temperature

48 Soil temperature

49 Soil moisture

50 Species richness

51 Shannon-Weiner diversity

52 Range health

53 Total shoot biomass

54 Graminoid biomass

55 Moss and lichen biomass

56 Total soil N

57 Soil organisms

58 Communication efforts to date Webpage is launched – Reports written for SRD, and are publicly available Talks at SRM, Agronomy update, upcoming soil science.

59 climate.biology.ualberta.ca Goals for website: 1) Public outreach 2) Communication portal 3) Internal uses

60 climate.biology.ualberta.ca 1) Public outreach – Hello world! – General goals/research questions – Introduce researchers – Results!

61 climate.biology.ualberta.ca 1) Communication portal – Questions about project – Contact information, websites of individual researchers 2) Internal use – Data/file storage and transfer

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65 climate.biology.ualberta.ca Increasing visibility: 1) Biological Sciences dept. webpage link 2) Google/Yahoo – General searches – Directories 3) Links from other pages – Supporting organizations – Feedback to Google ranking

66 climate.biology.ualberta.ca Measuring effectiveness: 1) Active feedback – 2) Passive feedback – StatCounter.com

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71 NSERC Reporting Requirments Progress Report – Prepared by PIs – Due to NSERC, and stakeholders, June 30 th Comments on report – Prepared by participating organizations – Due directly to NSERC July 15th

72 Comments by Supporting Organizations i) the amount and type of interaction their organization has had with the academic members and trainees working on the project; ii) the progress achieved toward the project's objectives; iii) the level of support committed (cash and/or in-kind, if applicable) as indicated in the original proposal; iv) the significance and usefulness of the results (advancement of knowledge, technology transfer) to their organization; v) their satisfaction with the overall direction of the research; vi) their efforts towards exploiting the research results.

73 The future Gearing up for year 2! Ongoing studies – Funding options Communication – Field day – updates – Meetings


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