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The overarching goal of this research was to use site-specific data to develop local and regionally-applicable climate change models that inform management of tidal wetlands along the Pacific Northwest coast. The overarching questions were: (1) how do tidal marsh site characteristics vary across estuaries, and (2) does tidal marsh susceptibility to sea-level rise (SLR) vary along a latitudinal gradient and between estuaries? These questions are addressed in this data collection with three specific objectives: (1) measure topographical and ecological characteristics (e.g., elevation, tidal range, vegetation composition) for tidal marsh and intertidal mudflats, (2) model SLR vulnerability of these habitats, and (3)...
Categories: Data; Types: Citation, Map Service, OGC WFS Layer, OGC WMS Layer, OGC WMS Service; Tags: vulnerability, Pt. Mugu, plants, hydrology, sf bay, All tags...
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Inland fish populations are a crucial resource to humans and communities around the world. Recreational fishing throughout the United States, for example, provides important revenue to local and state economies; globally, inland fisheries are a vital food source for billions of people. Warming temperatures and changing precipitation patterns, however, are already causing significant changes to fish communities worldwide. Since the mid-1980s, scientists have projected the effects of climate change on inland fish, and in more recent years, documentation of impacts has increased. However, the number of documented impacts of climate change on inland fish remains low. A comprehensive understanding of how climate change...
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The Integrated Scenarios of the Future Northwest Environment project (an FY2012 NW CSC funded project), resulted in several datasets describing projected changes in climate, hydrology and vegetation for the 21st century over the Northwestern US. The raw data is available in netCDF format, which is a standard data file format for weather forecasting/climate change/GIS applications. However, the sheer size of these datasets and the specific file format (netCDF) for data access pose significant barriers to data access for many users. This is a particular challenge for many natural/cultural resource managers and others working on conservation efforts in the Pacific Northwest. The goal of this project was to increase...
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The San Francisco Bay estuary, though severely fragmented and modified, represents the largest extent of tidal marsh in the western United States. Projected sea-level rise of 0.3-1.5 meters poses further threat to several endemic tidal marsh species that are listed as federally endangered or state threatened species, such as the salt marsh harvest mouse, the California clapper rail,and the California black rail. Resource and land managers charged with the protection of endangered species and their habitats are in need of site-specific predictions of anticipated climate change impacts through the synthesis of downscaled regional climate change models and available data on species’ ecological constraints. Changing...
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A large portion of the U.S. population lives in coastal areas along the Atlantic and Gulf coasts and the Caribbean; however, our coasts are also home to many fish, wildlife, and plant species that are important for recreation, tourism, local economies, biodiversity, and healthy coastal ecosystems. Coastal habitats also provide protective ecosystem services to human communities, which are increasingly at risk to storms and sea level rise under future climate change. Understanding how climate change will impact natural and human communities is a crucial part of decision making and management related to the protection of our coasts. In a collaborative project between the North Atlantic Landscape Conservation Cooperative...
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In the Northeastern U.S., climate change is expected to increase the frequency of extreme precipitation events. However, less rain is predicted to fall in between these extreme events and air temperatures are also expected to rise. This combination of conditions will likely expose the Northeast to both floods and droughts that will have significant ecological, social, and economic implications for the region. Infrastructure damage from extreme storm events, increased competition for water supplies during droughts, and the potential loss of wildlife and habitats are some of the various challenges facing resource managers and decision makers. Management actions that mitigate the damage from extreme floods and droughts...
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Historical and projected climate data point toward significant changes in the future for the Northeastern and Midwestern U.S. These changes will include impacts to many species (like birds, fish, and mammals), ecosystems (like forests), and natural resources (like water) that humans appreciate and rely on. In order to prepare for these changes, land and resource managers need to be able to predict how species will respond, what specific mechanisms are driving these changes, and what thresholds wildlife species may soon be pushed across. Crossing these thresholds could lead to rapid change or decline in the health of a wildlife population. In response to this need, a team of researchers is working to identify the...
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Led by the consortium of the South Central Climate Science Center (SC CSC), this project developed and implemented a professional development workshop for graduate students, post-docs, and early career researchers within the SC CSC region. The objectives were to: (1) introduce participants to the goals, structure, and unique research-related challenges of the SC-CSC and its place within the U.S. Department of the Interior and the larger CSC network, offering them insight into how their research fits into the broader research priority goals and its eventual applicability to end user needs across the region; (2) provide an opportunity for participants to present their research to fellow peers; (3) facilitate interdisciplinary...
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The Northwest Climate Conference (formerly called the Pacific Northwest Climate Science Conference) is the premier climate science event for the region, providing a forum for researchers and practitioners to share scientific results and discuss challenges and solutions related to the impacts of climate change on people, natural resources, and infrastructure in the Northwest. Conference participants include policy- and decision-makers, resource managers, and scientists from academia, public agencies, sovereign tribal nations, non-governmental organizations, and the private sector. More information can be found at the conference website: http://pnwclimateconference.org. The Sixth Annual Northwest Climate Conference...
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Plants and animals undergo certain recurring life-cycle events, such as migrations between summer and winter habitats or the annual blooming of plants. Known as phenology, the timing of these events is very sensitive to changes in climate (and changes in one species’ phenology can impact entire food webs and ecosystems). Shifts in phenology have been described as a “fingerprint” of the temporal and spatial responses of wildlife to climate change impacts. Thus phenology provides one of the strongest indicators of the adaptive capacity of organisms (or the ability of organisms to cope with future environmental conditions). In this study, researchers are investigating how the timing and occurrence of a number of...
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The gopher tortoise (Gopherus polyphemus) is a familiar species across the southeastern Coastal Plain, but its population has declined significantly over the decades. One reason is that much of its primary habitat, sparse stands of mature pine, has been replaced by development or agriculture. Another is that periodic ground fires, which are important for providing needed forage for the tortoise, have been largely suppressed on the landscape. The gopher tortoise is a “keystone” species, meaning that its disappearance from the landscape would jeopardize the existence of many other species that make use of its underground burrows. Besides tortoise habitat, the uplands of the Coastal Plain contain isolated seasonal...
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Elements that contribute to adaptive capacity include dispersal and colonization, phenotypic and behavioral flexibility, and evolutionary capacity. For example, in response to environmental change, species with greater adaptive capacity can move to or colonize more favorable habitats, can change their behavior or the timing of their life-cycle events, or can evolve over time tend to exhibit higher adaptive capacity. These coping mechanisms vary among species, so understanding and considering adaptive capacity can help managers determine which species within an ecosystem are most likely to be vulnerable to – and impacted by – climate change. This will improve the value of vulnerability assessments, help resource...
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Covering 120 million acres across 14 western states and 3 Canadian provinces, sagebrush provides critical habitat for species such as pronghorn, mule deer, and sage-grouse – a species of conservation concern. The future of these and other species is closely tied to the future of sagebrush. Yet this important ecosystem has already been affected by fire, invasive species, land use conversion, and now, climate change. In the western U.S., temperatures are rising and precipitation patterns are changing. However, there is currently a limited ability to anticipate the impacts of climate change on sagebrush. Current methods suffer from a range of weakness that limits the reliability of results. In fact, the current uncertainty...
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Appropriate ecological indicators of climate change can be used to measure concurrent changes in ecological systems, inform management decisions, and potentially to project the consequences of climate change. However, many of the available indicators for North American birds do not account for imperfect observation. We propose to use correlated-detection occupancy models to develop indicators from the North American Breeding Bird Survey data. The indicators will be used to test hypotheses regarding changes in range and distribution of breeding birds. The results will support the Northeast Climate Science Center’s Science Agenda, including the science priority: researching ecological vulnerability and species response...
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Forests are of tremendous ecological and economic importance. They provide natural places for recreation, clean drinking water, and important habitats for fish and wildlife. However, the warmer temperatures and harsher droughts in the west that are related to climate change are causing die-offs of many trees. Outbreaks of insects, like the mountain pine beetle, that kill trees are also more likely in warmer, drier conditions. To maintain healthy and functioning forest ecosystems, one action forest managers can take is to make management decisions that will help forests adapt to future climate change. However, adaptation is a process based on genetic change and few tools are currently available for managers to use...
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Hawaiʻi is considered a worldwide biodiversity hotspot, with nearly 90 percent of its native plants found nowhere else in the world. However, about half of these native plants are imperiled by threats including human development, non-native species, and climate change. Through this project, scientists modeled the relative vulnerability of over 1,000 native plant species to the effects of climate change. A panel of experts in Hawaiian plant species assisted with the development of the model and verified its results. From the model, researchers were able to develop a vulnerability score for each plant species and identify categories of species with high, medium, and low vulnerability to climate change. This information...
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National Wildlife Refuges (NWRs) along the East Coast of the United States protect habitat for a host of wildlife species, while also offering storm surge protection, improving water quality, supporting nurseries for commercially important fish and shellfish, and providing recreation opportunities for coastal communities. Yet in the last century, coastal ecosystems in the eastern U.S. have been severely altered by human development activities as well as sea-level rise and more frequent extreme events related to climate change. These influences threaten the ability of NWRs to protect our nation’s natural resources and to sustain their many beneficial services. Through this project, researchers are collaborating with...
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Social scientists funded through the National Climate Change and Wildlife Science Center (NCCWSC) and the Climate Science Centers (CSCs) have an obligation to provide access to their climate science related research data. We suspect, as with other data types, that tools for creating and editing social science metadata specific to the climate science domain and linking the metadata to the actual data either do not exist or are non-intuitive for scientists. Through our research we sought to verify whether any definitive metadata tool for social scientists working in the climate science domain exists. We also sought to determine whether a commonly agreed upon social science metadata standard exists. We suspect that...
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Federal land managers need an adaptive management framework to accommodate changing conditions and that allows them to effectively link the appropriate science to natural resource management decision-making across jurisdictional boundaries. FRAME-SIMPPLLE is a collaborative modeling process designed to accomplish this goal by coupling the adaptive capabilities of the SIMPPLLE modeling system with accepted principles of collaboration. The two essential components of the process are FRAME (Framing Research in support of the Adaptive Management of Ecosystems), which creates a collaborative problem-solving environment, and SIMPPLLE (SIMulating Patterns and Processes at Landscape Scales), which is a vegetation dynamics...
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Streamflow in the Colorado River is heavily influenced by high-elevation snowpack. Warming temperatures in spring can reduce snow-fed flows, with serious implications for the water supplies that support communities and wildlife. While it is already well-known that precipitation has a significant influence on river flow, recent observations suggest that temperature and the amount of water in soil may also influence streamflow. In the face of a changing climate, it is important that resource managers understand how factors such as changing temperatures and precipitation will affect this vital water source. To address this need, researchers are examining records of streamflow, temperature, soil moisture, and precipitation...


map background search result map search result map Fate of Endangered Species in San Francisco Bay Tidal Marshes with Sea Level Rise Using a Collaborative Modeling Approach to Explore Climate and Landscape Change in the Northern Rockies and Inform Adaptive Management Science to Support Adaptive Landscape Planning and Decision Making for Gopher Tortoise Conservation Establishing Climate Change Vulnerability Rankings for Hawaiian Native Plants Regional Graduate Student, Post-Doc, and Early Career Researcher Workshop Examining the Influence of Temperature and Precipitation on Colorado River Water Resources: Reconstructing the Past to Understand the Future Supporting Social Scientists working with the CSCs in Data Sharing Efforts Avian Indicators of Climate Change Based on the North American Breeding Bird Survey Forecasting Future Changes in Sagebrush Distribution and Abundance Climate Change Adaptation for Coastal National Wildlife Refuges Integrated Scenarios Tools: Improving the Accessibility of the Integrated Scenarios Data Support for the Sixth Annual Northwest Climate Conference Global Analysis of Trends in Projected and Documented Effects of Climate Change on Inland Fish Slowing the Flow for Climate Resilience: Reducing Vulnerability to Extreme Flood and Drought Events Examining the Responses of Species to Climate Change: Will Wildlife Face Biological Thresholds? How and Why is the Timing and Occurrence of Seasonal Migrants in the Gulf of Maine Changing Due to Climate? Identifying Critical Thresholds and Tipping Points for Priority Coastal Species in a Changing Future Using Genetic Information to Understand Drought Tolerance and Bark Beetle Resistance in Whitebark Pine Forests Sea-level rise projections for and observational data of tidal marshes along the California coast Adaptive Capacity: The Linchpin for Understanding and Addressing Species Vulnerability to Climate Change Impacts Using Genetic Information to Understand Drought Tolerance and Bark Beetle Resistance in Whitebark Pine Forests Climate Change Adaptation for Coastal National Wildlife Refuges Establishing Climate Change Vulnerability Rankings for Hawaiian Native Plants Fate of Endangered Species in San Francisco Bay Tidal Marshes with Sea Level Rise Examining the Influence of Temperature and Precipitation on Colorado River Water Resources: Reconstructing the Past to Understand the Future Sea-level rise projections for and observational data of tidal marshes along the California coast How and Why is the Timing and Occurrence of Seasonal Migrants in the Gulf of Maine Changing Due to Climate? Integrated Scenarios Tools: Improving the Accessibility of the Integrated Scenarios Data Support for the Sixth Annual Northwest Climate Conference Science to Support Adaptive Landscape Planning and Decision Making for Gopher Tortoise Conservation Slowing the Flow for Climate Resilience: Reducing Vulnerability to Extreme Flood and Drought Events Forecasting Future Changes in Sagebrush Distribution and Abundance Regional Graduate Student, Post-Doc, and Early Career Researcher Workshop Using a Collaborative Modeling Approach to Explore Climate and Landscape Change in the Northern Rockies and Inform Adaptive Management Examining the Responses of Species to Climate Change: Will Wildlife Face Biological Thresholds? Identifying Critical Thresholds and Tipping Points for Priority Coastal Species in a Changing Future Avian Indicators of Climate Change Based on the North American Breeding Bird Survey Supporting Social Scientists working with the CSCs in Data Sharing Efforts Adaptive Capacity: The Linchpin for Understanding and Addressing Species Vulnerability to Climate Change Impacts Global Analysis of Trends in Projected and Documented Effects of Climate Change on Inland Fish