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  • In 2009 and 2010 we began revisions to our State Wildlife Action Plan. We knew we wanted to better incorporate climate change. Our 2005 version had a very small section on climate variability. ANIMATOINS…We worked with Defenders of Wildlife and MIT to do some vulnerability assessments, scenario planning and develop adaptation strategies so we now have a full chapter on climate change.LOOSEN UP. BREATHE, PAUSE, NO UMS
  • I believe most, if not all of you are familiar with CCVI. If not, it is a…Rapid assessment tool that uses…Uses down-scaled climate data, which we got from TNC Climate Wizard (temperature and moisture) – this was the direct exposure information …And indirect exposure, species sensitivity, distribution and life history info, we got this from species experts…And gives you a relative vulnerability score which corresponds to a vulnerability category.
  • We knew we wanted to use the CCVI on several of our Species of Greatest Conservation Need from our State Wildlife Action Plan. We had several attributes that we wanted our selected species to represent and we also wanted to ensure that we had good taxonomic representation. Attributes included…. Broad range vs restricted range listed Inland vs coastal vs aquatic vs terrestrialAbundant vs rareA lot of info vs a little infoHunted or fished vs nongame vs exoticPreconceived notions of vulnerable vs no vulnerableSpatial dataSGCN vs. non-SGCNCharismatic vs. non-charismaticBottom line…we really wanted to see how differently these species with various attributes would rank using CCVI. We worked with Defenders and species experts to choose 35 species we thought would have enough information and were a good representation of our SGCNs.
  • Those 35 species were reduced to 24 species that had enough information to input into CCVI and come out with relative rankings.On the left you’ll see the index score and on the right as well as in the key, you’ll see the corresponding vulnerability category.The CCVI generated relative vulnerability ranks across species and also was able to incorporate uncertainty as you can see by the error bars or ranges across vulnerability categories. There are several questions that were asked of the species experts. If the experts weren’t sure how to answer a question and give it a score, the expert could give a range of answers which resulted in the uncertainty you see captured here.Of the species assessed, birds generally ranked lower on the vulnerability scale, whereas reptiles tended to rank at the upper end of the scale. Among the mammals, those restricted to the Florida Keys ranked higher than the other mammals that were evaluated. The species experts found this tool really interesting because it helped elucidate underlying factors contributing to vulnerability for these species.
  • For the spatially explicit vulnerability analyses, we went from 24 species down to 6 focal species…
  • The spatially explicit vulnerability analyses or SEVA, focused on the southern 30 counties of FL and SLR. They used two inputs; 1) species habitat models that included actual and potential habitat, and 2) future land-use scenarios.The land-use scenarios used three different time periods and 4 dimensions, for simplicity only the 2060 information was presented in our revised Action Plan but the rest can be found a separate MIT report. The maps of Florida’s potential alternative futures present scenarios in which there are changes in 4 different dimensions: 1) climate change (SLR/coastal inundation), 2) human population change/urbanization, 3) land and water planning policies (infrastructure expansion) and, 4) availability of public resources for conservation.
  • Here’s a visual for the different dimensions of the alternative futures. This particular figure shows a future with moderate financial resources being put towards conservation, low SLR, a doubling of population, and business as usual planning. (if needed…SLR levels were ~ ¼, ½, and 1 meter)These dimensions and the possible variability in these dimensions could result in an overwhelming number of future scenarios. So….
  • We focused on three scenarios and again, only one time period, for our Action Plan revision. Those three scenarios represent the best case, middle of the road, and worst case scenarios. There are additional scenarios and time period information available in a separate MIT report. In these figures, you’ll see the outline of the southern 30 counties in FL…here’s Lake Okeechobee, the Atlantic and the Gulf, Orlando and Disney would be here…We have the best case on the left and worst case on the right…the charts at the top depict those 4 dimensions….The maps show expected changes in SLR, agriculture, conservation lands, and urbanization given those scenarios…The pie charts show land use composition for that scenario at 2060….And the tables on the bottom show you how much area is expected to be covered by each of those land uses.Walk through some of the differences…more conservation land in scenario B, more urbanization in the other two…in scenario E, there’s money available for conservation still so you still have a bit of green but in scenario C there’s hardly any…
  • On the next slide I’m going to go over some results from one of our focal species, the American crocodile so I wanted to give you a little bit of background info.American crocodiles occur in coastal waters throughout the Caribbean, and occur at the northern end of their range in south Florida. They live in brackish or saltwater areas, and can be found in coastal estuarine marshes, tidal swamps, and creeks along edges of mainland and islands. They are occasionally being encountered inland in freshwater areas of the SE Florida coast as a result of the extensive canal system. Here is a very simple map of Florida and the area I’ll be focusing on in the next slide…
  • These should look familiar …..I mentioned that there were two inputs to the SEVA process, 1) was the land-use scenarios, and 2) was species habitat models. MIT took the future land use scenarios and combined that information with habitat maps for the species which resulted in impact maps. CLICK FOR ANIMATIONThese impact maps gave us a visual representation of potential habitat loss each scenario. This impact map happens to be for the American crocodile, scenario C (worst case), at 2060. You’ll see a lot of the current habitat available for the species will be inundated but some will remain. For this particular species, the species experts also helped us to identify areas that they thought would be highest (bottom), average and marginal quality habitat.We ended up with these impact maps for all of our focal species, for the various scenarios…
  • The CCVI and SEVA differed in the degree to which they incorporated both human and species-level responses, as well as in the type and scale of the outputs that were produced. Outputs from both approaches were used in a workshop with managers and biologists to work through conceptual models and then identify potential adaptation strategies for focal species and where we may be able to implement those strategies.
  • Done in a workshop setting, one group of experts and managers per species. The conservation targets were both our focal species as well as the habitats of the focal species. We also started them off with post-its with threats and stressors from our Action Plan and let them expand and build on that. What contributes to those threats? What are the things or conservation actions we can do to address those threats?
  • Here is a digital version of the American crocodile conceptual model…It looks messy here but it was even messier in real life. This was done during a workshop where each group working on a species was using giant post-its and string to build out their conceptual models on big tables.
  • Our groups of species experts and managers were then presented with large, table-sized maps of at least a portion of the species habitat and asked to mark up and draw on the maps where the conservation actions from their conceptual models could or should be implemented.This map is again for the America crocodile. Some of it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense without the accompanying text but, if I could draw your attention to the one at the top of the map CLICK… you’ll see this reddish orange area is where the group thought land acquisition or easements would help provide habitat for the crocodile as they tried to move inland and north in Florida to escape SLR.
  • 2nd bullet: the scale at which coastal areas and changes would need to be examined is relatively fine and therefore more challenging and time consuming3rd bullet: there are some habitat-specific vegetation models, for example mangroves, and some multi-community models like SLAMM available and they’re becoming more available but at the time this work was conducted there was very limited information that could have been used here
  • This research, as well as the lessons learned and comparison of methods, was summarized in a chapter in Florida's State Wildlife Action Plan called "Florida Adapting to Climate Change." The work we did for this revision of the SWAP did not address changes in our SGCN list due to our vulnerability assessments or spatial analyses nor did it affect our threats and actions. We’re planning to go that extra step during our next revision which will be around 2017 as we’re aiming for 5 year revisions instead of 10.Both the MIT and Defenders report is available through our website, as is the revised 2012 Action Plan. Feel free to email me as well.Although I didn’t cover it today, we’re continuing to work with both Defenders and the MIT folks, now GeoAdaptive, on two State Wildlife Grant projects that are building on what we’ve already done. We’re also started to incorporate climate change into another big planning effort that our agency is currently involved with for our imperiled species management and have started focusing a portion of our SWG funds each year on climate change adaptation. So, please feel free to come chat with me! Questions?
  • During the analyses, species tended to fall into three categories or management contexts regarding climate change impacts. These included, 1) species with room to move, 2) species that will be competing with their neighbors (moving into new habitats), and 3) species that will be surrounded on all sides (no ability to migrate in any direction). Multiple adaptation strategies were identified for each category, but I’ll give you some of main strategies that were discussed.Room to moveAmerican crocodile and short-tailed hawk???Large conservation areas which provide room for species & habitats to moveStrategiesFill data gaps on vegetational and species responsesHabitat maintenance & improvementCompeting with neighborsFlorida panther and short-tailed hawk???Potential to move, but competition with human usesStrategiesPublic education & outreach to reduce impactsResearch effects of roads & other barriers, potential mitigation optionsWork w/ private landowners to conserve landscape featuresSurrounded on all sidesAtlantic salt marsh snake and Key deerOpen water & urbanization surround habitat and prevent movementMost difficult to address w/ adaptation strategiesContinue filling data gaps on species dynamicsActively manage available habitat to bolster populationsIdentify and conserve corridors Note that the least tern was a difficult one because there was no habitat suitability modeling done for the species prior to attempting SEVA. The suitable habitat is widespread in FL but occurs in very narrow strips that change easily.

Transcript

  • 1. Andrea Alden Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission
  • 2. Relative vulnerabilities of some SGCN to climate change NatureServe’s Climate Change Vulnerability Index
  • 3.  Exposure – Temperature and moisture  Indirect exposure – SLR, barriers, land use  Species sensitivity – Dispersal ability – Sensitivity to change in temp and precipitation – Habitat specificity – Genetic factors  Dispersal, niche, disturbance – Diet, genetics, …  Response – Range, protected areas Defenders Partnership: Climate Change Vulnerability Index (CCVI) Glick et al. 2011
  • 4. All photos courtesy of en.wikipedia.org
  • 5. CCVI: select SGCN scores Extremely Vulnerable Highly Vulnerable Moderately Vulnerable Not Vulnerable/Presumed Stable Not Vulnerable/Increase Likely
  • 6. Relative vulnerabilities of our species to climate change NatureServe’s Climate Change Vulnerability Index tool then Spatially Explicit Vulnerability Analyses (SEVA) Habitat modeling And Future land-use scenarios
  • 7. Spatially Explicit Vulnerability Analyses •6 focal species 2 birds – least tern & short-tailed hawk 2 reptiles – Atlantic salt marsh snake & America crocodile 2 mammals – Florida panther & Key deer
  • 8.  50 years into the future – 2010, 2040, and 2060  Scenarios varied across 4 dimensions: – Climate change represented by sea level rise – Changes in human population represented by urbanization – Land & water planning policies represented by infrastructure expansion – Availability of public resources for conservation Future Land-Use Scenarios
  • 9. Future Land-Use Scenarios
  • 10. Scenario Dimensions & Future Scenarios  Scenario B – best case  Scenario E – middle  Scenario C – worst case
  • 11. SEVA Process American Crocodile Orientation
  • 12.  3 future land use scenarios + habitat models = impact maps SEVA Process
  • 13. Relative vulnerabilities of our species to climate change NatureServe’s Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment tool next Spatially Explicit Vulnerability Analyses (SEVA) Future land-use scenarios And Habitat and modeling Conceptual modeling Added a spatial component Potential adaptation strategies And Locations to implement
  • 14. Conceptual Modeling
  • 15. Adaptation Strategy Map
  • 16. Obstacles & Lessons Learned  Good to have two methods – Different assumptions/caveats – Different data & uncertainties – Comparison of results  Modeling changes in coastal areas is more difficult and time consuming  Models of vegetation change and succession under climate change is needed  Working with experts takes time but brings collaboration and buy-in
  • 17. Andrea.Alden@MyFWC.com www.MyFWC.com/wildlifelegacy
  • 18. Adaptation Strategies 1. Room to move strategies • Fill data gaps on vegetational and species responses • Habitat maintenance & improvement 2. Competing with neighbors strategies • Research effects of roads & other barriers, potential mitigation options • Work w/ private landowners to conserve landscape features 3. Surrounded on all sides strategies • Most difficult to address  Continue filling data gaps on species dynamics  Actively manage available habitat to bolster populations  Identify and conserve corridors