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Final Report: Decision support for climate change adaptation in the GPLCC: Creating geospatial data products for ecosystem assessments and predictive species modeling


Start Date
2011-01-31 06:00:00
Start Date
2011-01-31 06:00:00
End Date
2011-01-31 06:00:00


Robert Crabtree(Principal Investigator), J. W. Sheldon(Cooperator/Partner), Kenneth Wilson(Cooperator/Partner), Christopher Potter(Cooperator/Partner), Brandt Winkelman(Cooperator/Partner), Daniel Weiss(Cooperator/Partner), Sharon Baruch-Mordo(Cooperator/Partner), Gordon C. Reese(Cooperator/Partner), Great Plains Landscape Conservation Cooperative(publisher), 2011-01-31(Start), Final Report: Decision support for climate change adaptation in the GPLCC: Creating geospatial data products for ecosystem assessments and predictive species modeling


Species populations are in a state of flux due to the cumulative and interacting impacts of climate change and human stressors across landscapes. Invasive spread, pathogen outbreaks, land-use activities, and especially climate disruption and its associated impacts—severe drought (see Figure 3 or the GPLCC), reduced stream flow, increased wildfire frequency, extended growing season, and extreme weather events—are increasing, and in some cases accelerating. These impacts are outpacing management and conservation responses intended to support trust species and their critical habitats. Our common goal is to craft successful adaptation strategies in the face of these multiple, interacting drivers of environmental change. New and enhanced [...]


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We provided existing and new geospatial data products at multiple spatial (30, 250, 1000, 4000, and 8000 meters) and temporal (daily, monthly, annual, and static) scales to conduct ecosystem assessments and provide explanatory variables (dynamic covariates) for species habitat models (see Tables 1, 2, 3 and Figures 1, 2, 3). We also provided user-friendly tools for GPLCC partners to access and manipulate these data in an almost limitless capacity (Objective 1 and see to assess which locations, habitats, and temporal windows (days, seasons, years, decades) were impacted by various climate parameters and their secondary impacts on ecosystem properties such as plant productivity. Such landscape vulnerability assessments are important to practitioners who face constant decision-making responsibilities. We also develop and apply species habitat and population analysis tools (see Objective 2) to three focal species of interest to the GPLCC: (1) Arkansas Valley Evening Primrose (Oenothera harringtonii), (2) Swift fox (Vulpes velox) and (3) Grasshopper Sparrow (Ammodramus savannarum). These analysis tools (with user’s Manual) are an improved version of the commonly used technique known as Resource Selection Functions or RSF (Manly et al. 2002) which until now did not have a supporting software platform. These tools were developed as ArcGIS plug-ins and we added a wide variety of user-friendly components (end-user decision points, visualization, diagnostics, data exploration tools, and predictive modeling capability) to create a “white-box” approach for practitioners. Our software architecture permits construction of diagnostic, retrospective models as well as prospective (what-if-scenarios) species distribution assessments by biologists working beyond the lifetime of this current project.

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