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Living on the Edge of Two Changing Worlds: Forecasting the Responses of Rocky Intertidal Ecosystems to Climate Change

Record type: Article

Long-term monitoring shows that the poleward range edges of intertidal biota have shifted by as much as 50 km per decade, faster than most recorded shifts of terrestrial species. Although most studies have concentrated on species-range edges, recent work emphasizes how modifying factors such as regional differences in the timing of low tide can overwhelm large-scale climatic gradients, leading to a mosaic of environmental stress. We discuss how changes in the mean and variability in climatic regimes, as modified by local and regional factors, can lead to complex patterns of species distribution rather than simple range shifts. We describe how ecological forecasting may be used to generate explicit hypotheses regarding the likely impacts of different climatic change scenarios on the distribution of intertidal species and how related hindcasting methods can be used to evaluate changes that have already been detected. These hypotheses can then be tested over a hierarchy of temporal and spatial scales using coupled field and laboratory-based approaches.

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Citation

Helmuth, Brian, Mieszkowska, Nova, Moore, Pippa and Hawkins, Stephen J. (2006) Living on the Edge of Two Changing Worlds: Forecasting the Responses of Rocky Intertidal Ecosystems to Climate Change Annual Review of Ecology Evolution and Systematics, 37, (1), pp. 373-404. (doi:10.1146/annurev.ecolsys.37.091305.110149).

More information

Published date: December 2006

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 188139
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/188139
ISSN: 1543-592X
PURE UUID: 639a3250-3a5e-4b56-a5c6-6bd5c097f72c

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Date deposited: 20 May 2011 12:36
Last modified: 18 Jul 2017 11:42

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Contributors

Author: Brian Helmuth
Author: Nova Mieszkowska
Author: Pippa Moore

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