This project had two primary goals: 1) To develop a process for integrating data from multiple sources to improve predictions of climate impacts for wildlife species; and 2) To provide data on climate and related hydrological change, fire behavior under future climates, and species’ distributions for use by researchers and resource managers.
We present within this report the process used to integrate species niche models, fire simulations, and vulnerability assessment methods and provide species’ reports that summarize the results of this work. Species niche model analysis provides information on species’ distributions under three climate scenarios and time periods. Niche model analysis allows us to estimate the degree to which species are likely to be affected by climate impacts to habitat. Fire simulation models were generated under a single climate scenario for the same three time periods and are used, in conjunction with species response profiles, to generate risk maps that represent the potential for negative fire impacts. For a given time period, these risk maps represent the cumulative impact from climate (change area of predicted habitat) and fire (positive, neutral or negative impact on predicted habitat). The output from these modeling efforts can identify the relative impacts among species and habitats, potential refugia, and guide management priorities. However, climate change response is also a function of the innate sensitivity and adaptive capacity of a species’ that contributes to their capacity to deal not only with habitat change but changes to resource availability, phenology and biotic interactions. To consider these factors with estimates for changes in habitat, we generated species vulnerability scores using a modified version of a climate change vulnerability assessment system. Through these methods, we provide data on the relative impact of climate change on species via change to habitat availability and the likelihood of climate change resulting in negative impacts via species’ vulnerability scores. These measures are then integrated using a risk analysis approach to identify critical issues over time and among species.
This product was co-funded by multiple Landscape Conservation Cooperatives: Desert LCC and the Southern Rockies LCC.
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