SYMP 21-2
Species range shifts in marine vs. terrestrial systems: More alike than not

Thursday, August 8, 2013: 2:00 PM
Auditorium, Rm 3, Minneapolis Convention Center
Camille Parmesan, Marine Institute, Plymouth University, Plymouth, United Kingdom

In the past 10 years, several global meta-analyses have shown that about half of species studied have changed their distributions in response to regional climate change.  However, the brunt of data were from terrestrial systems, with too little marine data to make a formal comparison.   Working with the NCEAS Marine Climate Impacts group, we drew exclusively from marine literature to develop a large marine database of recent long-term changes in species' distributions and conducted meta-analyses to explore the relationships of observed changes with regional climate change.


We found that observed changes in species' distributions in marine systems match well with expected changes based on actual rates of shift in thermal isoclines in the past 50 years.  Rates of ranges shifts are somewhat higher than in terrestrial systems, in accord with higher magnitudes of temperature isotherm shift.  This set of analyses complements those on primarily terrestrial systems to both support previous conclusions on the global nature of impacts of climate change on wild species and strengthens the attribution of those observed changes to anthropogenic climate change.