Engineering a future for amphibians under climate change

Shoo, Luke P., Olson, Deanna H., McMenamin, Sarah K., Murray, Kris A., Van Sluys, Monique, Donnelly, Maureen A., Stratford, Danial, Terhivuo, Juhan, Merino-Viteri, Andres, Herbert, Sarah M., Bishop, Phillip J., Corn, Paul Stephen, Dovey, Liz, Griffiths, Richard A., Lowe, Katrin, Mahony, Michael, McCullum, Hamish, Shuker, Jonathan D., Simpkins, Clay, Skerratt, Lee F., Williams, Stephen E., and Hero, Jean-Marc (2011) Engineering a future for amphibians under climate change. Journal of Applied Ecology, 48 (2). pp. 487-492.

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Abstract

1. Altered global climates in the 21st century pose serious threats for biological systems and practical actions are needed to mount a response for species at risk.

2. We identify management actions from across the world and from diverse disciplines that are applicable to minimizing loss of amphibian biodiversity under climate change. Actions were grouped under three thematic areas of intervention: (i) installation of microclimate and microhabitat refuges; (ii) enhancement and restoration of breeding sites; and (iii) manipulation of hydroperiod or water levels at breeding sites.

3. Synthesis and applications. There are currently few meaningful management actions that will tangibly impact the pervasive threat of climate change on amphibians. A host of potentially useful but poorly tested actions could be incorporated into local or regional management plans, programmes and activities for amphibians. Examples include: installation of irrigation sprayers to manipulate water potentials at breeding sites; retention or supplementation of natural and artificial shelters (e.g. logs, cover boards) to reduce desiccation and thermal stress; manipulation of canopy cover over ponds to reduce water temperature; and, creation of hydrologoically diverse wetland habitats capable of supporting larval development under variable rainfall regimes. We encourage researchers and managers to design, test and scale up new initiatives to respond to this emerging crisis.

Item ID: 21276
Item Type: Article (Commentary)
ISSN: 1365-2664
Keywords: adaptation management, desiccation, hydroperiod, microclimate, microhabitat, refuge, restoration, thermal stress
Date Deposited: 30 Apr 2012 01:54
FoR Codes: 06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0699 Other Biological Sciences > 069902 Global Change Biology @ 100%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9605 Ecosystem Assessment and Management > 960501 Ecosystem Assessment and Management at Regional or Larger Scales @ 100%
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