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Short-lived species move uphill faster under climate change

Couet, Joséphine ; Marjakangas, Emma Liina ; Santangeli, Andrea ; Kålås, John Atle ; Lindström, Åke LU orcid and Lehikoinen, Aleksi LU (2022) In Oecologia 198(4). p.877-888
Abstract

Climate change is pushing species ranges and abundances towards the poles and mountain tops. Although many studies have documented local altitudinal shifts, knowledge of general patterns at a large spatial scale, such as a whole mountain range, is scarce. From a conservation perspective, studying altitudinal shifts in wildlife is relevant because mountain regions often represent biodiversity hotspots and are among the most vulnerable ecosystems. Here, we examine whether altitudinal shifts in birds’ abundances have occurred in the Scandinavian mountains over 13 years, and assess whether such shifts are related to species’ traits. Using abundance data, we show a clear pattern of uphill shift in the mean altitude of bird abundance across... (More)

Climate change is pushing species ranges and abundances towards the poles and mountain tops. Although many studies have documented local altitudinal shifts, knowledge of general patterns at a large spatial scale, such as a whole mountain range, is scarce. From a conservation perspective, studying altitudinal shifts in wildlife is relevant because mountain regions often represent biodiversity hotspots and are among the most vulnerable ecosystems. Here, we examine whether altitudinal shifts in birds’ abundances have occurred in the Scandinavian mountains over 13 years, and assess whether such shifts are related to species’ traits. Using abundance data, we show a clear pattern of uphill shift in the mean altitude of bird abundance across the Scandinavian mountains, with an average speed of 0.9 m per year. Out of 76 species, 7 shifted significantly their abundance uphill. Altitudinal shift was strongly related to species’ longevity: short-lived species showed more pronounced uphill shifts in abundance than long-lived species. The observed abundance shifts suggest that uphill shifts are not only driven by a small number of individuals at the range boundaries, but the overall bird abundances are on the move. Overall, the results underscore the wide-ranging impact of climate change and the potential vulnerability of species with slow life histories, as they appear less able to timely respond to rapidly changing climatic conditions.

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author
; ; ; ; and
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Altitudinal range shift, Avian community, Climate change, Life-history trait, Scandinavian mountains
in
Oecologia
volume
198
issue
4
pages
12 pages
publisher
Springer
external identifiers
  • scopus:85122345476
  • pmid:34989860
ISSN
0029-8549
DOI
10.1007/s00442-021-05094-4
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
592c4bda-1453-4ded-aa84-8ea8d0990f2b
date added to LUP
2022-12-28 09:54:30
date last changed
2024-04-04 14:52:49
@article{592c4bda-1453-4ded-aa84-8ea8d0990f2b,
  abstract     = {{<p>Climate change is pushing species ranges and abundances towards the poles and mountain tops. Although many studies have documented local altitudinal shifts, knowledge of general patterns at a large spatial scale, such as a whole mountain range, is scarce. From a conservation perspective, studying altitudinal shifts in wildlife is relevant because mountain regions often represent biodiversity hotspots and are among the most vulnerable ecosystems. Here, we examine whether altitudinal shifts in birds’ abundances have occurred in the Scandinavian mountains over 13 years, and assess whether such shifts are related to species’ traits. Using abundance data, we show a clear pattern of uphill shift in the mean altitude of bird abundance across the Scandinavian mountains, with an average speed of 0.9 m per year. Out of 76 species, 7 shifted significantly their abundance uphill. Altitudinal shift was strongly related to species’ longevity: short-lived species showed more pronounced uphill shifts in abundance than long-lived species. The observed abundance shifts suggest that uphill shifts are not only driven by a small number of individuals at the range boundaries, but the overall bird abundances are on the move. Overall, the results underscore the wide-ranging impact of climate change and the potential vulnerability of species with slow life histories, as they appear less able to timely respond to rapidly changing climatic conditions.</p>}},
  author       = {{Couet, Joséphine and Marjakangas, Emma Liina and Santangeli, Andrea and Kålås, John Atle and Lindström, Åke and Lehikoinen, Aleksi}},
  issn         = {{0029-8549}},
  keywords     = {{Altitudinal range shift; Avian community; Climate change; Life-history trait; Scandinavian mountains}},
  language     = {{eng}},
  number       = {{4}},
  pages        = {{877--888}},
  publisher    = {{Springer}},
  series       = {{Oecologia}},
  title        = {{Short-lived species move uphill faster under climate change}},
  url          = {{http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00442-021-05094-4}},
  doi          = {{10.1007/s00442-021-05094-4}},
  volume       = {{198}},
  year         = {{2022}},
}