Quantifying climate sensitivity and climate driven change in North American amphibian communities


B. Sigafus
Papers & Reports Quantifying climate sensitivity and climate driven change in North American amphibian communities
Click to copy
Authors: Miller DAW, Grant EHC, Muths E, Amburgey SM, Adams MJ, Joseph MB, Waddle JH, Johnson PTJ, Ryan ME, Schmidt BR, Calhoun DL, Davis CL, Fisher RN, Green DM, Hossack BR, Rittenhouse TAG, Walls SC, Bailey LL, Cruickshank SS, Fellers GM, Gorman TA, Haas CA, Hughson W, Pilliod DS, Price SJ, Ray AM, Sadinski W, Saenz D, Barichivich WJ, Brand A, Brehme CS, Dagit R, Delaney KS, Glorioso BM, Kats LB, Kleeman PM, Pearl CA, Rochester CJ, Riley SPD, Roth M, Sigafus BH | Date: 2018-08 | Outlet: Nature Communications | Format: .PDF
We quantified the response of amphibian communities to climatic variability across the United States and Canada using more than 500,000 observations for 81 species across 86 study areas. We estimated the relationships between annual variation in climate variables and local colonization and persistence probabilities across more than 5000 surveyed sites. This allowed us to estimate sensitivity to change in five climate variables. Climate sensitivity differs greatly among eco-regions and depends on local climate, species life-history, and phylogeny. Local species richness was especially sensitive to changes in water availability during breeding and changes in winter temperature. These results allowed us to ask whether changing climate explains strong overall rates of decline in species richness observed in our data set. We found that recent change in the climate variables we measured does not explain why North American amphibian richness is rapidly declining, but does explain why some populations decline faster than others.