Resource Managers

Also collaborating on these NE CSC projects

Climate change impacts on erosion, mass wasting, and the supply of sediment to tidal wetlands in the Northeast

Climate change is likely to impact erosion rates, the magnitude and frequency of extreme rainfall/mass wasting events, and the accumulation of sediment in coastal areas. However, long-term rates of erosion and sediment delivery to coastal systems are poorly constrained and there is limited understanding of the relative effects of climate change versus land-use change on these processes.

Bringing Together Cooperative Extension and NE CASC for Climate Adaptation

As more NE CASC projects come to completion, the opportunity to share research-based outputs to an expanded audience of end users has increased. The translation and application of climate science data and products are paramount to effective on-the-ground adaptation.  Extension staff at land-grant universities have a translational role in providing guidance to municipalities, private landowners, farmers, and other practitioners making natural resource management decisions. They work closely with academics, nonprofits, and state agencies to deliver research-based information and approaches.

Evaluation of Downscaled Climate Modeling Techniques for the Northeast U.S.

Downscaling is the process of making a coarse-scale global climate model into a finer resolution in order to capture some of the localized detail that the coarse global models cannot resolve.  There are two general approaches of downscaling:  dynamical and statistical.  Within those, many dynamical models have been developed by different institutions, and there are a number of statistical algorithms that have been developed over the years.

Development of the Wildlife Adaptation Menu for Resource Managers

 The Climate Change Response Framework is an example of a collaborative, cross-boundary approach to create a set of tools, partnerships, and actions to support climate-informed conservation and land management. Historically, this effort has focused on the needs of forest managers and forestry professionals. In recent years, however, there has been increasing demand for science and tools to address climate change adaptation in wildlife management and conservation.

One Hundred Parks and Counting: Biodiversity Findings and Outreach Impacts from a Nationwide BioBlitz

Connecting people, nature, and science is at the core of the mission of the US Department of the Interior. The National Park Service is playing a leading role in that mission in 2016 by hosting a national BioBlitz on May 20-21 that will have people nationwide recording observations of plants and animals in over 100 national parks.

Regional Effort on Invasive Species and Climate Change (RISCC) Management

Invasive species and climate change represent two of the five major global change threats to ecosystems.  An emerging initiative of the Northeast Climate Science Center aims to develop management-relevant research to improve invasive species management in the face of climate change.  Through working groups, information sharing and targeted research, this project addresses the information needs of invasive species managers in the context of climate change.

Coupled physical-chemical-biological models to predict losses of cold-water fish from inland lakes under climate warming

Cold-water fish are disappearing from many Midwestern lakes as they warm. This loss is due to a combination of de-oxygenation of the deep waters with heating of the surface waters. Together, these climate-driven changes squeeze the depth distribution of fish that require cold, well-oxygenated water, sometimes eliminating their habitat entirely. We will investigate where this combination of factors has likely caused extirpation of cold-water fishes, and where future warming is most likely to eliminate more populations. In addition to hydrodynamic modeling, we are partnering with genomics exp

Assessing potential impacts of climate change on carnivore occupancy and snowshoe hare demography along elevational and latitudinal gradients in the Northeastern U.S.

This project is evaluating the relative influence of climate, habitat, and competition on predator-prey dynamics with a focus on Canada lynx, American marten, and snowshoe hares.  Snowshoe hares are a keystone species in the boreal forest and vulnerable to climate change.

Predicting the fate and impact of watershed nutrient loads as Lake Michigan's hydrodynamics shift under climate change

Climate change is shifting the hydrodynamics and temperature of both the Great Lakes and their tributary rivers.  Both hydrology and temperature may play potent roles in mediating the magnitude of watershed nutrient load and their fate upon reaching the lake.  Tributary hydrology reflects the source of water (groundwater vs surface runoff) and seasonal timing of discharge, while tributary temperature determines the density difference between river and lake water.  Similarly, mixing patterns in these massive lakes strongly influence whether tributary loads remain near the shore or become dil

Linking Species' Responses to Climate Extremes

We are identifying historical relationships between climate extremes and species abundance, and then developing downscaled climate projections for the extreme climate metric. This information is then used to provide an initial projection of how the species abundance and location may change in the future. These initial assessments can help inform future assessments that consider broader types of climate and ecological information.

This prorovides information on how key species may change in the future, to help inform natural resource management.

Reconnecting Floodplains and Restoring Green Space as a Management Strategy to Minimize Risk and Increase Resilience in the Context of Climate and Landscape Change

This research seeks to identify opportunities to manage flows, connections, and landscapes in a way that increases the resilience of human communities and ecosystems. Our research will identify dynamic and adaptive solutions to managing river flows that allow continued provision of valuable infrastructure services such as flood control, hydropower, and water supply, while also supporting thriving river ecosystems - both today and into the future.

Supporting Collaborative Relationships between Tribes and Climate Science in the Northeast Region to Address Climate Impacts

All peoples have a right to make meaningful plans for their future. For many Tribes in the northeast region of the United States, trends in the environment such as shifting lake levels, patterns of precipitation and other seasonal cycles pose potential problems. This includes financial burdens on Tribal governments and stresses on Tribal cultural practices such as harvesting medicinal plants and food staples such as wild rice. Consistent with the U.S.

Scaling phenological patterns of canopy carbon cycling: Integrating physiology, canopy imagery, and net ecosystem exchange

Changing climate is predicted to shift the phenology of plant processes, with implications for ecosystem functions, such as carbon assimilation and storage. This project examines leaf-level parameters of carbon cycling and links them to canopy-scale measures of ecosystem exchange and near-remotely-sensed color indicies.

Long-term record of Atmospheric N deposition interact with climate to influence estuarine impacts

Atmospheric depostion can be an important contribution to nitrogen loading in coastal regions. Atmospheric loading is suggested to have declined due to pollution control efforts, however the degree and impact of this has not been quantified on Cape Cod. Additionally, it is predicted that climate change, especially with respect to rain events and durations, may interact with atmospheric conditions to affect estaurine productivity.  This project will analyze a long-time series of atmpsheric N deposition and climate to determine trends and the associated impacts to estaurine systems. 

Climate Assessments and Scenario Planning (CLASP)

This project aims to compile, synthesize, and communicate tailored climate change information to NE CSC stakeholders, including Landscape Conservation Cooperatives (LCC), state and federal agencies, and tribal communities. Our mission is to make climate science actionable by getting to know our stakeholders and the decisions they face, and delivering climate information that is directly relevant to their decisions and priorities.

Ecological and management implications of climate change induced shifts in phenology of coastal fish and wildlife species in the NE CASC region

Climate change is causing species to shift their phenology, or the timing of recurring life events such as migration and reproduction, in variable and complex ways. This can potentially result in mismatches or asynchronies in food and habitat resources that negatively impact individual fitness, population dynamics, and ecosystem function. Numerous studies have evaluated phenological shifts in terrestrial species, particularly birds and plants, yet far fewer evaluations have been conducted for marine animals.

Assessment of paleoclimate resources for studies of climate extremes

This project is focused on compiling existing paleo-limnological data from lakes throughout the Northeast. The goal of this project is to create an editable database of existing chronologies and proxy data. This resource can then be accessed and added to by any paleo-limnologists working in the region. Based on the existing information, researchers will be able to identify "high-reward" lakes that may be targeted for future high-resolution paleoclimate analysis and also pinpoint regions of the Northeast that may be currently lacking sufficient paleo-limnological data.

Making decisions in complex landscapes: headwater stream management across multiple agencies

There is growing evidence that headwater stream ecosystems are especially vulnerable to changing climate and land use, but their conservation is challenged by the need to address the threats at a landscape scale, often through coordination with multiple management agencies and landowners. This project sought to provide an example of cooperative landscape decision-making by addressing the conservation of headwater stream ecosystems in the face of climate change at the watershed scale.

Circulation patterns associated with climate extremes

The variability of winter precipitation over the northeastern United States and the corresponding teleconnections with five dominant large scale modes of climate variability (Atlantic Multi-decadal Oscillation, AMO, North Atlantic Oscillation, NAO, Pacific-North American pattern, PNA, Pacific Decadal Oscillation, PDO, and El Niño–Southern Oscillation, ENSO) were systemically analyzed in this study.  Three leading patterns of winter precipitation were first generated by empirical orthogonal function (EOF) analysis.

Predicting fire frequency with chemistry and climate

We are developing a predictive model for estimating fire frequency based on theories and data in physical chemistry, ecosystem ecology, and climatology.  We are applying this model to produce maps of fire frequency under current climate and several climate warming scenarios across the United States.  Results of the project will provide information on fire frequency under alternative climate scenarios, information needed to parameterize forest landscape change models.

Climate and disturbance factors affecting shifts between grassland and forest biomes over the past century within the upper Midwest

This project aims to quantify the range in variability in forest dynamics and climate responses for range-margin populations of Pinus banksiana and Picea mariana so as to generate management guidelines for conserving these forests on the landscape in an uncertain climatic future.  These species are the cornerstone for several upland and lowland habitat types on the western edge of the Northeast CSC and are particularly vulnerable to future changes in climate and disturbance regimes.

Downscaling of GCM output; studies of climate extremes

A statistical downscaling method (bias-correction and spatial disaggregation: BCSD) is applied to general circulation models (GCMs) from the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5) to generate high-resolution downscaled precipitation, maximum temperature, and minimum temperature estimates under historical and three future emission scenarios over the Northeastern United States.

Multi-model regional model simulations for future climate scenarios

General circulation models and high resolution regional climate models (RCMs) are being used to simulate climate of the recent past and to project future climate change across the northeastern US.  We are interested in the timing of changes regionally, as compared to the changes occcurring nationally and globally, and the patterns of key parameters that are of relevance to natural systems (frost occcurrence, snow cover, drought, fire hazard conditions, etc).  We are also assessing the consistency of climate models in simulating recent climate changes, in order to improve confidence in futur

Assessment of regional climate model simulation estimates over the northeast United States

We used outputs from an ensemble of regional climate models (RCMs) participating in the North American Regional Climate Change Assessment Program (NARCCAP) to investigate potential changes in seasonal air temperature and precipitation between present (1971–2000) and future (2041–2070) time periods across the northeast United States (New England and adjacent states).

Extending the northeast terrestrial habitat map to Atlantic Canada

Consistent and accurate landscape datasets are important foundational products for ecological analyses and for understanding and anticipating the effects of climate change on forested, agricultural, and freshwater systems across the U.S. and Canada. The objective of this project was to extend an existing terrestrial habitat map of the north Atlantic U.S. to Atlantic Canada and southern Quebec, using and modeling field-collected data combined with national and provincial datasets.

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