Skip to main content


Michael J Osland

Research Ecologist

Wetland and Aquatic Research Center

Office Phone: 337-266-8664
ORCID: 0000-0001-9902-8692

WARC - Office/LAb Building
700 Cajundome Blvd.
Lafayette , LA 70506

Supervisor: Deborah M Epperson
Aim Climate change is expected to result in the tropicalization of coastal wetlands in the northern Gulf of Mexico, as warming winters allow tropical mangrove forests to expand their distribution poleward at the expense of temperate salt marshes. Data limitations near mangrove range limits have hindered understanding of the effects of winter temperature extremes on mangrove distribution and structure. Here, we investigated the influence of extreme freeze events on the abundance, height and coverage of black mangroves (Avicennia germinans ) near their northern range limit in Louisiana. Location Coastal Louisiana, USA. Methods We quantified the relationships between the frequency of extreme freeze events and A. germinans...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation
Barrier islands provide important ecosystem services, including storm protection and erosion control to the mainland, habitat for fish and wildlife, and tourism (Barbier and others, 2011; Feagin and others, 2010). These islands tend to be dynamic due to their location along the estuarine-marine interface. Besides gradual changes caused by constant forces, such as currents and tides, barrier islands face numerous threats including hurricanes, accelerated sea-level rise, oil spills, and anthropogenic impacts (Pilkey and Cooper, 2014). These threats are likely to influence the future of barrier islands in the latter part of the 21st century, especially as climate-related threats to coastal areas are expected to increase...
Abstract (from Springer): Climate change is altering species’ range limits and transforming ecosystems. For example, warming temperatures are leading to the range expansion of tropical, cold-sensitive species at the expense of their cold-tolerant counterparts. In some temperate and subtropical coastal wetlands, warming winters are enabling mangrove forest encroachment into salt marsh, which is a major regime shift that has significant ecological and societal ramifications. Here, we synthesized existing data and expert knowledge to assess the distribution of mangroves near rapidly changing range limits in the southeastern USA. We used expert elicitation to identify data limitations and highlight knowledge gaps for...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation
Winter climate change has the potential to have a large impact on coastal wetlands in the southeastern United States. Warmer winter temperatures and reductions in the intensity of freeze events would likely lead to mangrove forest range expansion and salt marsh displacement in parts of the U.S. Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic coast. The objective of this research was to better evaluate the ecological implications of mangrove forest migration and salt marsh displacement. The potential ecological impacts of mangrove migration are diverse, ranging from important biotic impacts (e.g., coastal fisheries, land bird migration; colonial-nesting wading birds) to ecosystem stability (e.g., response to sea-level rise and drought;...
Abstract (from Ecosystems): Increases in temperature are expected to facilitate encroachment of tropical mangrove forests into temperate salt marshes, yet the effects on ecosystem services are understudied. Our work was conducted along a mangrove expansion front in Louisiana (USA), an area where coastal wetlands are in rapid decline due to compounding factors, including reduced sediment supply, rising sea level, and subsidence. Marsh and mangrove ecosystems are each known for their ability to adjust to sea-level rise and support numerous ecosystem services, but there are some differences in the societal benefits they provide. Here, we compare carbon and nitrogen stocks and relate these findings to the expected effects...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation
View more...
ScienceBase brings together the best information it can find about USGS researchers and offices to show connections to publications, projects, and data. We are still working to improve this process and information is by no means complete. If you don't see everything you know is associated with you, a colleague, or your office, please be patient while we work to connect the dots. Feel free to contact