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Global climate change and sea-level rise will have profound effects on estuarine fish, shellfish and wildlife populations and their habitats. Our ability to manage sustainable fish, shellfish and other wildlife populations in the future will be seriously compromised unless we have a basic understanding of the coming changes and use this to develop mitigation and adaptation measures. The overall objective of this multi-agency research is to develop the baseline climatic and biological data, models, and tools to predict the cumulative impact of climate change on habitats and ecosystem services in a series of coastal estuaries of the Pacific Northwest. In collaboration with other federal, state, and non-governmental...
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Throughout its native range in the Eastern U.S., the brook trout is a culturally and economically important species that is sensitive to warming stream temperatures and habitat degradation. The purpose of this assessment was to determine the impacts that projected future land use and climate changes might have on the condition of stream habitat to support self-sustaining brook trout populations. The study region encompassed the historic native range of brook trout, which includes the northeastern states and follows the Appalachian Mountains south to Georgia, where the distribution is limited to higher elevation streams with suitable water temperatures. Relationships between recent observations of brook trout and...
Categories: Project; Types: Map Service, OGC WFS Layer, OGC WMS Layer, OGC WMS Service; Tags: 2009, CASC, Completed, Completed, Completed, All tags...
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Water scarcity is a growing concern in Texas, where surface water is derived almost entirely from rainfall. Changes in air temperature and precipitation patterns associated with global climate change are anticipated to regionally affect the quality and quantity of inland surface waters and consequently their suitability as habitat for freshwater life. In addition to directly affecting resident organisms and populations, these changes in physicochemical traits of aquatic habitats may favor the establishment of harmful invasive species. As conflicts over the use of water resources grow in intensity, this information will become important for fish and wildlife managers to anticipate impacts of climate change on trust...
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The smallmouth bass (SMB) is a widespread species with a distribution that extends throughout the eastern and central U.S., in addition to introduced populations in other regions. From a management perspective, the SMB is important both as a popular sport fish and as a threat to native species where it is present outside of its natural range. Understanding the population-level responses of this species to environmental change is thus a priority for fisheries resource managers. This project aimed to explicitly model the impacts of projected climate and land use change on the growth, population dynamics, and distribution of stream-dwelling SMB in the U.S. Impacts on growth and demographic variables were modeled using...
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This project brought together a team of researchers from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and universities to develop a comprehensive web-based dataset of high-resolution (or ‘downscaled’) climate change projections, to enable scientists and decision-makers to better assess climate related ecosystem impacts. Currently, scientists and resource managers often find it difficult to use downscaled climate projections because of the multiple methodologies used to produce them and the time-consuming process required to obtain model output. In response, the research team implemented a three-part plan to provide high resolution climate data for the impact modeling community. First, a database was developed of up-to-date...
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Quaking aspen populations are declining in much of the West due to altered fire regimes, competition with conifers, herbivory, drought, disease, and insect outbreaks. Aspen stands typically support higher bird biodiversity and abundance than surrounding habitat types, and maintaining current distribution and abundance of several bird species in the northern Great Basin is likely tied to the persistence of aspen in the landscape. This project examined the effects of climate change on aspen and associated bird communities by coupling empirical models of avian-habitat relationships with landscape simulations of vegetation community and disturbance dynamics under various climate change scenarios. Field data on avian...
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The goal of the glacial lakes regional study was to predict the impacts of climate and land use change on coldwater fish habitat in the glacial lakes region, which covers most of Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Michigan. The study includes both top-level, regional analyses and more detailed case studies of individual lakes. The goal of this project was to provide (1) projections of land use and climate change impacts on the trophic status of Midwestern coldwater glacial lakes, (2) projections of land use and climate change impacts on the regional distribution of coldwater lake oxythermal habitat, and (3) guidance on the types of coldwater lakes in which locations will be the most or least vulnerable to land use and climate...
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This project produced land use change change forecasts for the United States at the national scale, based on the National Land Cover Dataset (NLCD) 2001. Both urban and agricultural expansion were modeled at 300-meter resolution at ten-year intervals from 2010 to 2050.
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This project built on an existing regional conservation partnership to use the most recent downscaled climate model projections to forecast the likely impacts of climate change to species and ecosystems in the Lower Mississippi Valley (LMV). The objective of this work was to develop and test ecological and biological models to facilitate regional adaptive management of wildlife resources and the forest and wetland ecosystems that support them in the LMV. The modeled projections were then used to evaluate climate change effects on high priority bird species, waterfowl, amphibians, and fisheries. In particular, the researchers sought to answer two key questions: (1) what are the impacts of predicted climate change...
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As glaciers melt from climate change, their contents – namely, large quantities of freshwater, sediment, and nutrients – are slowly released into coastal ecosystems. This project addressed the impacts of melting glaciers on coastal ecosystems in the Copper River region of the Gulf of Alaska, which is home to several commercially important fisheries. Researchers examined how glacial melting is altering the amount and timing of freshwater that enters the Gulf of Alaska from the Copper River. They also investigated the source and amount of two nutrients, iron and nitrate, dissolved in the water. As a complementary piece of the study, researchers tested the relationship between nutrient levels, plankton populations,...
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Our study addresses the general question of the degree to which wildlife species can adapt to, or possibly even modify, effects from climate change. We focused on five species of mammals in the alpine zone of the Sierra Nevada mountain range, including the federally endangered Sierra Nevada bighorn sheep and the American pika, a species recently proposed for listing due to the loss of populations from altered climatic conditions. It was expected that there will be an upward expansion of trees and shrubs from lower elevations and that many or even most alpine meadows will be converted to woody dominated communities. Meadows provide critical habitat for many alpine mammal species, and their conversion could represent...
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The overall goal of the Midwestern regional-scale assessment was to identify river reaches in the Glacial Lakes Partnership regions (focusing on Michigan, Minnesota, and Wisconsin) that are most vulnerable to potential impacts of projected climate and land use changes. Because fish assemblages are strongly influenced by river water temperature and flow regimes, which are in turn affected by climate and land-use conditions, we will attempt to model fish habitat response to climate and land use changes through changes in temperature and flow. This project intended to: (1) develop three models that predict daily summer temperature for all river reaches in each state; (2) develop a single model to predict non-winter...
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North American freshwater mussels are in serious decline as a result of pollution and habitat destruction from human activities. In addition, many mussel species are living in habitats that push the upper limits of their heat tolerance, which may become problematic as the climate and, as a result, water temperatures warm. As part of this project, we created a set of models to predict how freshwater mussels would respond to climate change effects. Our primary objective was to help federal and state natural resource managers forecast how mussel species will respond to climate change over the next 30 to 50 years, so that managers can develop appropriate adaptation strategies to address these changes. Additionally,...
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Florida is home to 50 endangered species, 23 National Wildlife Refuges, 9 national parks, and 119 state parks. Straddling both temperate and sub-tropical zones, the state is also unique in that it is a long and narrow peninsula, surrounded on three sides by warm water, creating a dynamic environment. The impacts of climate change, such as sea-level rise and severe storms, threaten the state’s unique biodiversity—yet managers are unsure how species will respond to these changes, which makes planning for the future difficult. In order to identify the impacts of climate change on Florida’s plants and wildlife, researchers developed regional climate scenarios identifying how temperature and precipitation patterns...
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If current climate change trends continue, rising sea levels could inundate low-lying islands across the globe. The Northwestern Hawaiian Islands (NWHI) is a group of islands of great conservation importance that is threatened by sea-level rise. Stretching 2,000 km beyond the main Hawaiian Islands, the NWHI are a World Heritage Site and part of the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument. The islands support the largest tropical seabird rookery in the world, providing breeding habitat for 21 species of seabirds, 4 land bird species, and essential habitat for other resident and migratory wildlife. Because these are low-lying islands, even small increases in sea-level could result in the loss of critical habitat,...
Categories: Project; Types: Map Service, OGC WFS Layer, OGC WMS Layer, OGC WMS Service; Tags: 2009, Baby Brooks Bank, Bank 66, Birds, Birds, All tags...
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One goal of the National Scale Assessment included identifying regions and associated river reaches across the United States that are most vulnerable to projected climate and land use changes. As an initial attempt to characterize river system vulnerability, we followed the definition posed by Kasperson et al. (2006) that incorporates exposure of systems to stresses like climate and land use changes, sensitivity of systems to those changes, and system resilience. This project intended to provide (1) a framework of stream classification to assess vulnerability of fish habitat under future climate change, (2) a framework of stream classification to assess vulnerability of fish habitat with projected urban and agriculture...
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Conservation and natural resource managers require information about potential future climate changes for the areas they manage, in terms that are relevant for the specific biotic and environmental resources likely to be affected by climate change. We produced a suite of data sets that provide managers with climate and climate-derived data and a visualization approach that allows managers to map where 1) a managed area's potential future climate is located on today's landscape (i.e., the locations of the modern analogues of future climate) and 2) the areas to which the present climate (and habitat) of managed areas are projected to move. We produced downscaled climate data from historical (1901-2000) data sets and...
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This project produced long simulations (multi-decadal to multi-century in scale) of past, present, and future regional climate at a grid spacing of 50 kilometers (km) over North America and at a grid spacing of 15 km over western and eastern North America. These model runs were the first attempt to achieve coordinated, high-resolution downscaling with such wide geographic and temporal coverage. The objectives of this project were to (1) understand the nature of climate change and variability, (2) quantify the climate-driven responses and feedbacks of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, wildfire, the hydrologic cycle, and alpine glaciers, and (3) provide climate information in a form that is useful to a wide range...
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Great Lakes fishery managers and stakeholders have little information regarding how climate change could affect the management and conservation of fish populations, including those of high recreational and commercial value. Scientists from the US Geological Survey (USGS) worked closely with state management agencies and the National Wildlife Federation to complete several objectives that provide knowledge to aid their planning and management strategies in anticipation of coming changes. First, researchers updated a regional Great Lakes climate model to predict water level changes, water temperatures, and ice cover data for the entire Great Lakes basin 50-100 years into the future. Second, researchers used satellite...
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To develop effective adaptive management plans, conservation and natural resource managers need to know how climate change will affect the species and ecosystems they manage. This project provides managers with information about potential climate change effects on species and managed areas in the Pacific Northwest. We evaluated projected changes in climate, vegetation, and species distributions through the year 2099 and assessed the potential impacts of these changes on key species and managed lands. We worked with conservation and natural resource managers to incorporate the results of this study into state, federal, and non-governmental organization (NGO) management plans. The projected changes in climate, vegetation,...


map background search result map search result map How will Florida’s Biodiversity Respond to Climate Change? How will Mammals in the Alpine Zone of the Sierra Nevada Mountains Respond to Future Climate? Forecasting Climate Change Induced Effects on Recreational and Commercial Fish Populations in the Great Lakes Impacts of Climate Change and Melting Glaciers on Coastal Ecosystems in the Gulf of Alaska Modeling the Response of Freshwater Mussels to Changes in Water Temperature, Habitat, and Streamflow Predicting Climate Change Threats to Key Estuarine Habitats and Ecosystem Services in the Pacific Northwest Predicting the Risk of Species Extinctions Due to Sea-Level Rise in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands Quantifying Vulnerability of Quaking Aspen Woodlands and Associated Bird Communities to Global Climate Change in the Northern Great Basin Development of the Geo Data Portal to Make Climate Projections and Scientific Data More Accessible to Users A Visualization Approach for Projecting Future Climate Distributions in North America Modeling and Projecting the Influence of Climate Change on Texas Surface Waters and their Aquatic Biotic Communities Assessing the Vulnerability of Species and Ecosystems to Projected Future Climate Change in the Pacific Northwest Projected Climate Change for the Conterminous United States (National Assessment) Downscaled Climate Change Modeling for the Conterminous United States (National Assessment) Projected Land Use Change for the Conterminous United States (National Assessment) Projected Climate and Land Use Change Impacts on Aquatic Habitats in the Midwestern United States (Regional Assessment) Projected Vulnerability of Brook Trout to Climate and Land Use Changes in the Eastern U.S. (Regional Assessment) Projected Climate Change Impacts on Stream Dwelling Smallmouth Bass Populations in the U.S. (Local Assessment) Predicting Coldwater Fish Habitat in Lakes of the Glacial Lakes Region under Changing Land Use and Climate Regimes (Local Assessment) Forecasting the Effects of Land-Use and Climate Change on Wildlife Communities and Habitats in the Lower Mississippi Valley Predicting Climate Change Threats to Key Estuarine Habitats and Ecosystem Services in the Pacific Northwest Quantifying Vulnerability of Quaking Aspen Woodlands and Associated Bird Communities to Global Climate Change in the Northern Great Basin How will Mammals in the Alpine Zone of the Sierra Nevada Mountains Respond to Future Climate? How will Florida’s Biodiversity Respond to Climate Change? Forecasting the Effects of Land-Use and Climate Change on Wildlife Communities and Habitats in the Lower Mississippi Valley Projected Climate Change Impacts on Stream Dwelling Smallmouth Bass Populations in the U.S. (Local Assessment) Impacts of Climate Change and Melting Glaciers on Coastal Ecosystems in the Gulf of Alaska Modeling and Projecting the Influence of Climate Change on Texas Surface Waters and their Aquatic Biotic Communities Predicting Coldwater Fish Habitat in Lakes of the Glacial Lakes Region under Changing Land Use and Climate Regimes (Local Assessment) Predicting the Risk of Species Extinctions Due to Sea-Level Rise in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands Projected Climate and Land Use Change Impacts on Aquatic Habitats in the Midwestern United States (Regional Assessment) Forecasting Climate Change Induced Effects on Recreational and Commercial Fish Populations in the Great Lakes Projected Vulnerability of Brook Trout to Climate and Land Use Changes in the Eastern U.S. (Regional Assessment) Assessing the Vulnerability of Species and Ecosystems to Projected Future Climate Change in the Pacific Northwest Development of the Geo Data Portal to Make Climate Projections and Scientific Data More Accessible to Users Projected Climate Change for the Conterminous United States (National Assessment) Downscaled Climate Change Modeling for the Conterminous United States (National Assessment) Projected Land Use Change for the Conterminous United States (National Assessment) Modeling the Response of Freshwater Mussels to Changes in Water Temperature, Habitat, and Streamflow A Visualization Approach for Projecting Future Climate Distributions in North America