Assessing species vulnerability to climate change

Pacifici, Michela, Foden, Wendy B., Visconti, Piero, Watson, James E.M., Butchart, Stuart H.M., Kovacs, Kit M., Scheffers, Brett R., Hole, David.G., Martin, Tara G., Akçakaya, H. Resit, Corlett, Richard T., Huntley, Brian, Bickford, David, Carr, Jamie A., Hoffman, Ary A., Midgley, Guy F., Pearce-Kelly, Paul, Pearson, Richard G., Williams, Stephen E., Willis, Stephen G., Young, Bruce, and Rondinini, Carlo (2015) Assessing species vulnerability to climate change. Nature Climate Change, 5. pp. 215-225.

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Abstract

The effects of climate change on biodiversity are increasingly well documented, and many methods have been developed to assess species' vulnerability to climatic changes, both ongoing and projected in the coming decades. To minimize global biodiversity losses, conservationists need to identify those species that are likely to be most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. In this Review, we summarize different currencies used for assessing species' climate change vulnerability. We describe three main approaches used to derive these currencies (correlative, mechanistic and trait-based), and their associated data requirements, spatial and temporal scales of application and modelling methods. We identify strengths and weaknesses of the approaches and highlight the sources of uncertainty inherent in each method that limit projection reliability. Finally, we provide guidance for conservation practitioners in selecting the most appropriate approach(es) for their planning needs and highlight priority areas for further assessments.

Item ID: 37624
Item Type: Article (Refereed Research - C1)
ISSN: 1758-6798
Funders: National Science Foundation (NSF)
Projects and Grants: NSF Grant No. 1136586
Date Deposited: 04 Mar 2015 01:39
FoR Codes: 05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0501 Ecological Applications > 050101 Ecological Impacts of Climate Change @ 50%
05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050202 Conservation and Biodiversity @ 50%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9603 Climate and Climate Change > 960305 Ecosystem Adaptation to Climate Change @ 70%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9605 Ecosystem Assessment and Management > 960501 Ecosystem Assessment and Management at Regional or Larger Scales @ 30%
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