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Climate change produces winners and losers: Differential responses of amphibians in mountain forests of the Near East


Kafash, Anooshe; Ashrafi, Sohrab; Ohler, Annemarie; Yousefi, Masoud; Malakoutikhah, Shima; Koehler, Gunther; Schmidt, B R (2018). Climate change produces winners and losers: Differential responses of amphibians in mountain forests of the Near East. Global Ecology and Conservation, 16:e00471.

Abstract

Climate change is now considered as a serious threat to the viability of many species and consequently as one of the major drivers of global biodiversity loss. Amphibians serve critical roles in forest ecosystems and are one of the most sensitive groups to environmental change. Despite the importance of amphibians in forest ecosystems and their sensitivity to environmental changes, little is known about potential impacts of future climate change on forest-dwelling amphibians. We projected the impact of climate change on the geographic distribution of three typical species of forest-dwelling amphibians, the Balkan Crested Newt (Triturus ivanbureschi), the Anatolian Crested Newt (T. anatolicus) and the Southern Crested Newt (T. karelinii). We also evaluated the representation of suitable habitats of the three crested newts in protected areas under the current and future climatic condition. We found that the Balkan Crested Newt and the Anatolian Crested Newt are likely to lose considerable proportions of their currently suitable habitats in the future as climate changes, while the Southern Crested Newt is likely to gain new habitats. Results showed that the future coverage of the most suitable habitats inside protected areas would drop by 22% and 49.2% for the Balkan Crested Newt and for the Anatolian Crested Newt, respectively. However, results showed a 15.7% increase in the suitable habitats of the Southern Crested Newt inside protected areas. Our study suggests that forest biodiversity will be negatively affected by future climatic change. Our findings also highlight the importance of integrating the impacts of climate change into designation of new protected areas in mountain forests of the Near East.

Abstract

Climate change is now considered as a serious threat to the viability of many species and consequently as one of the major drivers of global biodiversity loss. Amphibians serve critical roles in forest ecosystems and are one of the most sensitive groups to environmental change. Despite the importance of amphibians in forest ecosystems and their sensitivity to environmental changes, little is known about potential impacts of future climate change on forest-dwelling amphibians. We projected the impact of climate change on the geographic distribution of three typical species of forest-dwelling amphibians, the Balkan Crested Newt (Triturus ivanbureschi), the Anatolian Crested Newt (T. anatolicus) and the Southern Crested Newt (T. karelinii). We also evaluated the representation of suitable habitats of the three crested newts in protected areas under the current and future climatic condition. We found that the Balkan Crested Newt and the Anatolian Crested Newt are likely to lose considerable proportions of their currently suitable habitats in the future as climate changes, while the Southern Crested Newt is likely to gain new habitats. Results showed that the future coverage of the most suitable habitats inside protected areas would drop by 22% and 49.2% for the Balkan Crested Newt and for the Anatolian Crested Newt, respectively. However, results showed a 15.7% increase in the suitable habitats of the Southern Crested Newt inside protected areas. Our study suggests that forest biodiversity will be negatively affected by future climatic change. Our findings also highlight the importance of integrating the impacts of climate change into designation of new protected areas in mountain forests of the Near East.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Institute of Evolutionary Biology and Environmental Studies
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
590 Animals (Zoology)
Uncontrolled Keywords:amphibian, climate change
Language:English
Date:1 October 2018
Deposited On:27 Nov 2018 13:22
Last Modified:27 Nov 2018 13:23
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:2351-9894
OA Status:Gold
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.gecco.2018.e00471

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