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Potential effects of climate change on plant species in the Faroe Islands

Fosaa, Anna Maria LU ; Sykes, Martin LU ; Lawesson, JE and Gaard, M (2004) In Global Ecology and Biogeography Letters 13(5). p.427-437
Abstract
Aim To identify the effect of climate change on selected plant species representative of the main vegetation types in the Faroe Islands. Due to a possible weakening of the North Atlantic Current, it is difficult to predict whether the climate in the Faroe Islands will be warmer or colder as a result of global warming. Therefore, two scenarios are proposed. The first scenario assumes an increase in summer and winter temperature of 2 degreesC, and the second a decrease in summer and winter temperature of 2 degreesC. Location Temperate, low alpine and alpine areas in the northern and central part of the Faroe Islands. Methods The responses of 12 different plant species in the Faroe Islands were tested against measured soil temperature,... (More)
Aim To identify the effect of climate change on selected plant species representative of the main vegetation types in the Faroe Islands. Due to a possible weakening of the North Atlantic Current, it is difficult to predict whether the climate in the Faroe Islands will be warmer or colder as a result of global warming. Therefore, two scenarios are proposed. The first scenario assumes an increase in summer and winter temperature of 2 degreesC, and the second a decrease in summer and winter temperature of 2 degreesC. Location Temperate, low alpine and alpine areas in the northern and central part of the Faroe Islands. Methods The responses of 12 different plant species in the Faroe Islands were tested against measured soil temperature, expressed as T-min, T-max, snow cover and growing degree days (GDD), using generalised linear modelling (GLM). Results The tolerance to changes in winter soil temperature (0.3-0.8 degreesC) was found to be lower than the tolerance to changing summer soil temperature (0.7-1.0 degreesC), and in both cases lower than the predicted climate changes. Conclusions The species most affected by a warming scenario are those that are found with a limited distribution restricted to the uppermost parts of the mountains, especially Salix herbacea, Racomitrium fasciculare, and Bistorta vivipara. For other species, the effect will mainly be a general upward migration. The most vulnerable species are those with a low tolerance, especially Calluna vulgaris, and also Empetrum nigrum, and Nardus stricta. If the climate in the Faroe Islands should become colder, the most vulnerable species are those at low altitudes. A significantly lower temperature would be expected to produce a serious reduction in the extent of Vaccinium myrtillus and Galium saxatilis. Species like Empetrum nigrum, Nardus stricta, and Calluna vulgaris may also be vulnerable. In any case, these species can be expected to migrate downwards. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
soil temperature, oceanicity, North Atlantic Current, Faroe Islands, cold summer, alpine species, climate change modelling, vegetation, warm winter, change
in
Global Ecology and Biogeography Letters
volume
13
issue
5
pages
427 - 437
publisher
Wiley-Blackwell
external identifiers
  • wos:000223112700004
  • scopus:4344563276
ISSN
0960-7447
DOI
10.1111/j.1466-822X.2004.00113.x
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
531cc10b-fc45-4314-bdd7-2283706c4202 (old id 271161)
date added to LUP
2007-10-10 07:26:46
date last changed
2017-01-01 07:12:14
@article{531cc10b-fc45-4314-bdd7-2283706c4202,
  abstract     = {Aim To identify the effect of climate change on selected plant species representative of the main vegetation types in the Faroe Islands. Due to a possible weakening of the North Atlantic Current, it is difficult to predict whether the climate in the Faroe Islands will be warmer or colder as a result of global warming. Therefore, two scenarios are proposed. The first scenario assumes an increase in summer and winter temperature of 2 degreesC, and the second a decrease in summer and winter temperature of 2 degreesC. Location Temperate, low alpine and alpine areas in the northern and central part of the Faroe Islands. Methods The responses of 12 different plant species in the Faroe Islands were tested against measured soil temperature, expressed as T-min, T-max, snow cover and growing degree days (GDD), using generalised linear modelling (GLM). Results The tolerance to changes in winter soil temperature (0.3-0.8 degreesC) was found to be lower than the tolerance to changing summer soil temperature (0.7-1.0 degreesC), and in both cases lower than the predicted climate changes. Conclusions The species most affected by a warming scenario are those that are found with a limited distribution restricted to the uppermost parts of the mountains, especially Salix herbacea, Racomitrium fasciculare, and Bistorta vivipara. For other species, the effect will mainly be a general upward migration. The most vulnerable species are those with a low tolerance, especially Calluna vulgaris, and also Empetrum nigrum, and Nardus stricta. If the climate in the Faroe Islands should become colder, the most vulnerable species are those at low altitudes. A significantly lower temperature would be expected to produce a serious reduction in the extent of Vaccinium myrtillus and Galium saxatilis. Species like Empetrum nigrum, Nardus stricta, and Calluna vulgaris may also be vulnerable. In any case, these species can be expected to migrate downwards.},
  author       = {Fosaa, Anna Maria and Sykes, Martin and Lawesson, JE and Gaard, M},
  issn         = {0960-7447},
  keyword      = {soil temperature,oceanicity,North Atlantic Current,Faroe Islands,cold summer,alpine species,climate change modelling,vegetation,warm winter,change},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {5},
  pages        = {427--437},
  publisher    = {Wiley-Blackwell},
  series       = {Global Ecology and Biogeography Letters},
  title        = {Potential effects of climate change on plant species in the Faroe Islands},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1466-822X.2004.00113.x},
  volume       = {13},
  year         = {2004},
}