Limits...
Patterns and variability of projected bioclimatic habitat for Pinus albicaulis in the Greater Yellowstone Area.

Chang T, Hansen AJ, Piekielek N - PLoS ONE (2014)

Bottom Line: For the sub-alpine species whitebark pine (Pinus albicaulis), warming temperatures may indirectly result in loss of suitable bioclimatic habitat, reducing its distribution within its historic range.Patterns of projected habitat change by the end of the century suggested a constant decrease in suitable climate area from the 2010 baseline for both Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs) 8.5 and 4.5 climate forcing scenarios.Future ecological research in species distribution modeling should consider a full suite of GCM projections in the analysis to reduce extreme range contractions/expansions predictions.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Ecology, Montana State University, Bozeman, Montana, United States of America.

ABSTRACT
Projected climate change at a regional level is expected to shift vegetation habitat distributions over the next century. For the sub-alpine species whitebark pine (Pinus albicaulis), warming temperatures may indirectly result in loss of suitable bioclimatic habitat, reducing its distribution within its historic range. This research focuses on understanding the patterns of spatiotemporal variability for future projected P.albicaulis suitable habitat in the Greater Yellowstone Area (GYA) through a bioclimatic envelope approach. Since intermodel variability from General Circulation Models (GCMs) lead to differing predictions regarding the magnitude and direction of modeled suitable habitat area, nine bias-corrected statistically down-scaled GCMs were utilized to understand the uncertainty associated with modeled projections. P.albicaulis was modeled using a Random Forests algorithm for the 1980-2010 climate period and showed strong presence/absence separations by summer maximum temperatures and springtime snowpack. Patterns of projected habitat change by the end of the century suggested a constant decrease in suitable climate area from the 2010 baseline for both Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs) 8.5 and 4.5 climate forcing scenarios. Percent suitable climate area estimates ranged from 2-29% and 0.04-10% by 2099 for RCP 8.5 and 4.5 respectively. Habitat projections between GCMs displayed a decrease of variability over the 2010-2099 time period related to consistent warming above the 1910-2010 temperature normal after 2070 for all GCMs. A decreasing pattern of projected P.albicaulis suitable habitat area change was consistent across GCMs, despite strong differences in magnitude. Future ecological research in species distribution modeling should consider a full suite of GCM projections in the analysis to reduce extreme range contractions/expansions predictions. The results suggest that restoration strageties such as planting of seedlings and controlling competing vegetation may be necessary to maintain P.albicaulis in the GYA under the more extreme future climate scenarios.

Show MeSH

Related in: MedlinePlus

Historic and projected climates variables for the GYA from 1895–2099 under RCP 4.5 and 8.5 scenarios.Light shaded orange and red lines represent individual GCMs for RCP 4.5 and 8.5 respectively. Bold lines represent GCM ensemble average. (a) Mean annual temperature (b) Mean annual precipitation.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4221071&req=5

pone-0111669-g001: Historic and projected climates variables for the GYA from 1895–2099 under RCP 4.5 and 8.5 scenarios.Light shaded orange and red lines represent individual GCMs for RCP 4.5 and 8.5 respectively. Bold lines represent GCM ensemble average. (a) Mean annual temperature (b) Mean annual precipitation.

Mentions: Here we also present an opportunity to investigate the effect of future climate variability on projected species distributions. In 2013, the World Climate Research Programme Coupled Model released the new generation General Circulation Model (GCM) projections through the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5) [28]. These new GCM projections also include four possible climate futures are modeled with each GCM under the Representative Concentration Pathways (RCP) of greenhouse gas/aerosol. These RCP scenarios designate four different levels of radiative forcing (2.6, 4.5, 6.0 and 8.5 W/m2) that may occur by the year 2099 [29]. In practice, research of future species suitable climate generally use a small suite of GCM/RCP combinations to project future climate [8], [11], [30]. However, internal variability in these GCMs that arise from modeled coupled interactions among the atmosphere, oceans, land, and cryosphere can result in atmospheric circulation fluctuations that are characteristic of a stochastic process [31]. Such intrinsic atmospheric circulation variations from model structure induce regional changes in air temperature and precipitation on the multi-decadal time scale [31]. For the GYA specifically, this GCM variability has be observed with mean annual temperatures projected to increase by °C and mean annual precipitation to change by −50 to +225 mm (Fig. 1). This suggests that magnitude and direction of projected species distributions at a regional scale can vary depending on the GCM selected and the modeled species response to more xeric or mesic future climate conditions [32].


Patterns and variability of projected bioclimatic habitat for Pinus albicaulis in the Greater Yellowstone Area.

Chang T, Hansen AJ, Piekielek N - PLoS ONE (2014)

Historic and projected climates variables for the GYA from 1895–2099 under RCP 4.5 and 8.5 scenarios.Light shaded orange and red lines represent individual GCMs for RCP 4.5 and 8.5 respectively. Bold lines represent GCM ensemble average. (a) Mean annual temperature (b) Mean annual precipitation.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4221071&req=5

pone-0111669-g001: Historic and projected climates variables for the GYA from 1895–2099 under RCP 4.5 and 8.5 scenarios.Light shaded orange and red lines represent individual GCMs for RCP 4.5 and 8.5 respectively. Bold lines represent GCM ensemble average. (a) Mean annual temperature (b) Mean annual precipitation.
Mentions: Here we also present an opportunity to investigate the effect of future climate variability on projected species distributions. In 2013, the World Climate Research Programme Coupled Model released the new generation General Circulation Model (GCM) projections through the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5) [28]. These new GCM projections also include four possible climate futures are modeled with each GCM under the Representative Concentration Pathways (RCP) of greenhouse gas/aerosol. These RCP scenarios designate four different levels of radiative forcing (2.6, 4.5, 6.0 and 8.5 W/m2) that may occur by the year 2099 [29]. In practice, research of future species suitable climate generally use a small suite of GCM/RCP combinations to project future climate [8], [11], [30]. However, internal variability in these GCMs that arise from modeled coupled interactions among the atmosphere, oceans, land, and cryosphere can result in atmospheric circulation fluctuations that are characteristic of a stochastic process [31]. Such intrinsic atmospheric circulation variations from model structure induce regional changes in air temperature and precipitation on the multi-decadal time scale [31]. For the GYA specifically, this GCM variability has be observed with mean annual temperatures projected to increase by °C and mean annual precipitation to change by −50 to +225 mm (Fig. 1). This suggests that magnitude and direction of projected species distributions at a regional scale can vary depending on the GCM selected and the modeled species response to more xeric or mesic future climate conditions [32].

Bottom Line: For the sub-alpine species whitebark pine (Pinus albicaulis), warming temperatures may indirectly result in loss of suitable bioclimatic habitat, reducing its distribution within its historic range.Patterns of projected habitat change by the end of the century suggested a constant decrease in suitable climate area from the 2010 baseline for both Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs) 8.5 and 4.5 climate forcing scenarios.Future ecological research in species distribution modeling should consider a full suite of GCM projections in the analysis to reduce extreme range contractions/expansions predictions.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Ecology, Montana State University, Bozeman, Montana, United States of America.

ABSTRACT
Projected climate change at a regional level is expected to shift vegetation habitat distributions over the next century. For the sub-alpine species whitebark pine (Pinus albicaulis), warming temperatures may indirectly result in loss of suitable bioclimatic habitat, reducing its distribution within its historic range. This research focuses on understanding the patterns of spatiotemporal variability for future projected P.albicaulis suitable habitat in the Greater Yellowstone Area (GYA) through a bioclimatic envelope approach. Since intermodel variability from General Circulation Models (GCMs) lead to differing predictions regarding the magnitude and direction of modeled suitable habitat area, nine bias-corrected statistically down-scaled GCMs were utilized to understand the uncertainty associated with modeled projections. P.albicaulis was modeled using a Random Forests algorithm for the 1980-2010 climate period and showed strong presence/absence separations by summer maximum temperatures and springtime snowpack. Patterns of projected habitat change by the end of the century suggested a constant decrease in suitable climate area from the 2010 baseline for both Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs) 8.5 and 4.5 climate forcing scenarios. Percent suitable climate area estimates ranged from 2-29% and 0.04-10% by 2099 for RCP 8.5 and 4.5 respectively. Habitat projections between GCMs displayed a decrease of variability over the 2010-2099 time period related to consistent warming above the 1910-2010 temperature normal after 2070 for all GCMs. A decreasing pattern of projected P.albicaulis suitable habitat area change was consistent across GCMs, despite strong differences in magnitude. Future ecological research in species distribution modeling should consider a full suite of GCM projections in the analysis to reduce extreme range contractions/expansions predictions. The results suggest that restoration strageties such as planting of seedlings and controlling competing vegetation may be necessary to maintain P.albicaulis in the GYA under the more extreme future climate scenarios.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus