Linking spatially explicit species distribution and population models to plan for the persistence of plant species under global change

Janet Franklin, Helen M. Regan, Alexandra D. Syphard

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations

Abstract

Conservation managers and policy makers require models that can rank the impacts of multiple, interacting threats on biodiversity so that actions can be prioritized. An integrated modelling framework was used to predict the viability of plant populations for five species in southern California's Mediterranean-type ecosystem. The framework integrates forecasts of land-use change from an urban growth model with projections of future climatically-suitable habitat from climate and species distribution models, which are linked to a stochastic population model. The population model incorporates the effects of disturbance regimes and management actions on population viability. This framework: (1) ranks threats by their relative and cumulative impacts on population viability, such as land-use change, climate change, altered disturbance regimes or invasive species, and (2) ranks management responses in terms of their effectiveness for land protection, assisted dispersal, fire management and invasive species control. Too-frequent fire was often the top threat for the species studied, thus fire reduction was ranked the most important management option. Projected changes in suitable habitat as a result of climate change were generally large, but varied across species and climate scenarios; urban development could exacerbate loss of suitable habitat.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)97-109
Number of pages13
JournalEnvironmental Conservation
Volume41
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2014

Keywords

  • California
  • biodiversity
  • climate change
  • fire
  • land-use change
  • population model
  • population viability
  • rare plant species
  • species distribution model
  • urban growth model

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Water Science and Technology
  • Pollution
  • Nature and Landscape Conservation
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis

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