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Abstract (from http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/2016GB005493/abstract): Phytoplankton growth in the Gulf of Alaska (GoA) is limited by iron (Fe), yet Fe sources are poorly constrained. We examine the temporal and spatial distributions of Fe, and its sources in the GoA, based on data from three cruises carried out in 2010 from the Copper River (AK) mouth to beyond the shelf break. April data are the first to describe late winter Fe behavior before surface water nitrate depletion began. Sediment resuspension during winter and spring storms generated high “total dissolvable Fe” (TDFe) concentrations of ~1000 nmol kg−1 along the entire continental shelf, which decreased beyond the shelf break. In July, high...
Brook trout, brown trout, and rainbow trout are distributed throughout streams in Michigan and support valuable recreational fisheries. Streams are projected to become warmer in the future due to climate change, but the effects of warming on growth, reproduction, and survival of these trout species are largely unknown. Understanding and predicting climate change impacts is important for developing management strategies that sustain healthy, fishable trout populations. The goal of this project was to design a user-friendly, map-based decision-support tool that combines stream-specific information on resource availability (e.g., money, time, personnel), temperature patterns, and other biological conditions to assist...
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Northeastern boreal forests are an important habitat type for many wildlife species, including migratory birds and moose. These animals play vital roles in the boreal forest ecosystem, are a source of pleasure for bird and wildlife watchers, and contribute to tourism revenue for many communities. However, moose and migratory birds are thought to be particularly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. For example, in New York’s Adirondack Park system, five species of boreal birds have shown occupancy declines of 15% or more. Meanwhile, moose are threatened by winter ticks that thrive in warmer climates and spread disease. A 2018 New York Department of Environmental Conservation (NYDEC) report found that there...
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Inland fishes provide important ecosystem services to communities worldwide and are especially vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. Fish respond to climate change in diverse and nuanced ways, which creates challenges for practitioners of fish conservation, climate change adaptation, and management. Although climate change is known to affect fish globally, a comprehensive online, public database of how climate change has impacted inland fishes worldwide and adaptation or management practices that may address these impacts does not exist. We conducted an extensive, systematic primary literature review to identify peer-reviewed journal publications describing projected and documented examples of climate change...
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Sport fisheries of lakes are embedded in complex system of ecological and social interactions. The multiple drivers that affect lake sport fisheries, along with the complex interactions within lakes, make it difficult to forecast changes in sport fisheries and plan adaptive responses to build resilience of these important resources. Resilience involves managing with an eye toward critical thresholds for behavior of ecosystems. Project researchers are working to develop quantitative tools for assessment of thresholds in sport fisheries that can be used by management agencies to evaluate potential impacts of climate change mediated through species and habitat interactions. Several outputs of the project will be adaptable...
The Department of the Interior Climate Science Centers (CSCs) and their managing organization, the National Climate Change and Wildlife Science Center at the U.S. Geological Survey, have chosen the emerging climate science field of Ecological Drought as a research focus area. This workshop is part of a series of meetings at each of the nation’s eight CSCs aimed at collating our existing knowledge of the ecological impacts, resistance, and recovery from drought. The eight CSCs provide a fantastic opportunity to compare the ecological effects of drought, related research activities, and management options at different regions, spatial scales, and biomes.
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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 USGS National Climate Change and Wildlife Science Center (NCCWSC), as part of the work of the Interagency Land Management Adaptation Group (ILMAG), initiated a project in 2013 to develop plans for a searchable, public registry on climate change vulnerability assessments. Member agencies from the USGCRP Adaptation Science Work Group, the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies (AFWA), and several NGO’s also contributed. Vulnerability assessments are important for identifying resources that are most likely to be affected by climate change and providing insights on why certain resources are vulnerable. Consequently, they provide valuable information for informing climate change adaptation planning. CRAVe allows...
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The Southeastern U.S. spans broad ranges of physiographic settings and contains a wide variety of aquatic systems that provide habitat for hundreds of endemic aquatic species that pose interesting challenges and opportunities for managers of aquatic resources, particularly in the face of climate change. For example, the Southeast contains the southernmost populations of the eastern brook trout and other cold-water dependent species. Climate change is predicted to increase temperatures in the South and is likely to have a substantial effect on extant populations of cold-water biota. Thus, aquatic managers are tasked with developing strategies for preserving cold-water dependent biota, such as eastern brook trout,...
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There are approximately 2,000 species of migratory birds worldwide, and over 300 of those can be found in North America. Changing climate conditions pose challenges for many migratory birds and their responses to these challenges can depend on their biology. To illustrate these impacts, a board game, called Migration Mismatch, was developed to help elementary school students understand these challenges. Migration Mismatch can help students build their understanding of biological processes and how species, birds in this case, interact with their environment. The game provides an interactive element to learning about adaptations of different bird species to environmental changes and provides a link to birds they may...
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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...
The American Fisheries Society and the Human Dimensions Research Unit of Cornell University have been engaged by NCCWSC to lead 5-year reviews of the CSCs. The purpose of the CSC review and evaluation is to: 1. Evaluate the effectiveness of each CSC in meeting project goals. 2. Assess the level of scientific contribution and achievement at each CSC with respect to climate modeling, climate change impacts assessments, vulnerability and adaptation of fish, wildlife and their habitats, and collaborative development of adaptation strategies for regional stakeholders, and education and training of graduate and post‚Äźdoctoral fellows 3. Evaluate the competencies and efficiencies of each host university in managing...
Our knowledge of avian behaviors during the non-breeding period still lags behind that of the breeding season, but the last decade has witnessed a proliferation in research that has yielded significant progress in understanding migration patterns of North American birds. And, although the great majority of migration research has historically been conducted in the eastern half of the continent, there has been much recent progress on aspects of avian migration in the West. In particular, expanded use of techniques such as radar, plasma metabolites, mist-netting, count surveys, stable isotopes, genetic data, and animal tracking, coupled with an increase in multi-investigator collaborations, have all contributed to...
Abstract (from http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10236-013-0684-3): A three-level nested Regional Ocean Modeling System was used to examine the seasonal evolution of the Copper River (CR) plume and how it influences the along- and across-shore transport in the northern Gulf of Alaska (NGoA). A passive tracer was introduced in the model to delineate the growth and decay of the plume and to diagnose the spread of the CR discharge in the shelf, into Prince William Sound (PWS) and offshore. Furthermore, a model experiment with doubled discharge was conducted to investigate potential impacts of accelerated glacier melt in future climate scenarios. The 2010 and 2011 simulation revealed that the upstream (eastward)...
Abstract (from http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0138759): Future climate change may significantly alter the distributions of many plant taxa. The effects of climate change may be particularly large in mountainous regions where climate can vary significantly with elevation. Understanding potential future vegetation changes in these regions requires methods that can resolve vegetation responses to climate change at fine spatial resolutions. We used LPJ, a dynamic global vegetation model, to assess potential future vegetation changes for a large topographically complex area of the northwest United States and southwest Canada (38.0–58.0°N latitude by 136.6–103.0°W longitude). LPJ is a...
Abstract (from http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0380133014002597): Fish stock-recruitment dynamics may be difficult to elucidate because of nonstationary relationships resulting from shifting environmental conditions and fluctuations in important vital rates such as individual growth or maturation. The Great Lakes have experienced environmental stressors that may have changed population demographics and stock-recruitment relationships while causing the declines of several prey fish species, including rainbow smelt (Osmerus mordax). We investigated changes in the size and maturation of rainbow smelt in Lake Michigan and Lake Huron and recruitment dynamics of the Lake Michigan stock over the past...
Great Lakes fishery managers and stakeholders have little information regarding how climate change could affect the management of recreationally and commercially important fisheries, which have been valued at more than $7 billion USD annually. Our research focused on how climate change could influence fish habitat (including water temperature, ice cover, and water levels), phytoplankton production that supports fish biomass, and ultimately the growth and consumption of many important recreational and commercial fish species. This final report was produced for the NCCWSC-funded project Forecasting Climate Change Induced Effects on Recreational and Commercial Fish Populations in the Great Lakes.
Habitat loss and alteration from land use change, species invasion, and more recently, climate change have reduced biodiversity and ecosystem function worldwide. Habitat decisions have important implications to individual fitness as well as population dynamics and community structure. Resource limitation, predation, competition, and unfavorable abiotic conditions all have the potential to influence survival and future reproductive potential. Understanding how changes to ecosystem structure and function impact species and populations of conservation concern is essential for conservation delivery to be effective. Similar to many migratory species, shorebird populations are declining worldwide and declines may be related...
Abstract (from http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/ecy.1853/full): Predicting species responses to perturbations is a fundamental challenge in ecology. Decision makers must often identify management perturbations that are the most likely to deliver a desirable management outcome despite incomplete information on the pattern and strength of food web links. Motivated by a current fishery decline in inland lakes of the Midwestern United States, we evaluate consistency of the responses of a target species (walleye (Sander vitreus)) to press perturbations. We represented food web uncertainty with 196 plausible topological models and applied four perturbations to each one. Frequently the direction of the focal...


map background search result map search result map USGS-USFS Partnership to Help Managers Evaluate Conservation Strategies for Aquatic Ecosystems based on Future Climate Projections Climate Change and Resilience of Sport Fisheries in Lakes Development of the Climate Registry for the Assessment of Vulnerability (CRAVe): A Searchable, Public Online Tool for Understanding Species and Habitat Vulnerability Supporting Social Scientists working with the CSCs in Data Sharing Efforts Fish and Climate Change (FiCli) Database: Informing climate change adaptation and management actions for freshwater fishes Global Analysis of Trends in Projected and Documented Effects of Climate Change on Inland Fish Integrating Climate Change Research and Planning to Inform Wildlife Conservation in the Boreal Forests of the Northeastern U.S. Migration Mismatch: Bird Migration and Phenological Mismatching Integrating Climate Change Research and Planning to Inform Wildlife Conservation in the Boreal Forests of the Northeastern U.S. Climate Change and Resilience of Sport Fisheries in Lakes USGS-USFS Partnership to Help Managers Evaluate Conservation Strategies for Aquatic Ecosystems based on Future Climate Projections Migration Mismatch: Bird Migration and Phenological Mismatching Development of the Climate Registry for the Assessment of Vulnerability (CRAVe): A Searchable, Public Online Tool for Understanding Species and Habitat Vulnerability Supporting Social Scientists working with the CSCs in Data Sharing Efforts Fish and Climate Change (FiCli) Database: Informing climate change adaptation and management actions for freshwater fishes Global Analysis of Trends in Projected and Documented Effects of Climate Change on Inland Fish