Integrating climate change into the state wildlife action plans
Fish and Wildlife agencies across the United States are currently revising their State Wildlife Action Plans (SWAPs). These documents are important planning documents over 10 year timescales. SWAP Coordinators have been challenged to incorporate climate change impacts and species responses as part of their strategic approaches to managing vulnerable fish and wildlife resources. The Northeast Climate Adaptation Science Center is assisting Northeast and Midwestern States meet this charge by developing a regional synthesis document that provides: 1) Regional and state-specific climate change projections for approximately twenty climate variables (e.g., air temperature, precipitation, evapotranspiration, soil moisture, sea level rise). 2) A regional overview of existing climate change vulnerability assessments and our current knowledge of regional species and habitats at greatest risk to climate impacts. 3) A summary of our current knowledge of biological responses to climate impacts with a focus on Regional Species of Greatest Conservation Need (RSGCN). 4) A compilation of the range of scale-appropriate adaptation strategies and actions available to natural resource agencies to conserve wildlife and resilient ecosystems over the short and long term.
It is anticipated that SWAP authors can use this synthesis document to guide their writing activities related to climate change. This project is being accomplished with input from SWAP Coordinators, Northeast Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies, Midwest Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies, and in collaboration with a range of partners including Terwilliger Consulting, the Landscape Conservation Cooperatives, the Northern Institute of Applied Climate Science (NIACS), and The Nature Conservancy.
This cooperative agency report underwent a formal USGS peer review process following Fundamental Science Practices requirements.
The entire report is available for download here:
Executive Summary and Chapter Highlights is available for download here:
Individual chapters are available for download here:
- Front matter and Executive summary - PDF
- Chapter 1 Climate Changes - PDF
- Chapter 2 Vulnerability Assessments- PDF
- Chapter 2 Appendices - Excel file
- Chapter 3 Biological Responses - PDF
- Chapter 3 Appendix 3.1 - Species List - Excel File
- Chapter 4 Adaptation Strategies - PDF
- Chapter 4 Appendix 4.1 - Regional Adaptation Strategies - Excel file
- Chapter 4 Appendix 4.2 - Adaptation tools - Excel file
- Chapter 4 Appendix 4.3 - Case studies - Excel file
- Chapter 4 Appendix 4.4 - Case studies - Excel file
UMass and U.S. Geological Survey: With extreme temps and more rain, New England wildlife at risk. July 1, 2015, MassLive.
New report provides guidenace on integrating climate science into SWAP updates. North Atlantic Landscape Conservation Cooperative.
UMass report on climate change to help guide wildlife action plans in 22 states. July 6, 2015, GazetteNet.
UMass and USGS: Climate Change Affecting Fish and Wildlife in New England. June 30, 2015, New England Public Radio.
Editorial: UMass team harnesses science to protect biodiversity. July 17, 2015, Amherst Bulletin.
UMass Amherst Scientists Assist Wildlife Managers With Conservation, Climate Science Data. June 29, 2015, UMass Amherst News and Media Relations.
Connecting Climate Science with State Resource Planning. June 29, 2015, US Fish and Wildlife Service.
Interior’s Northeast Climate Science Center Releases Report to Help State Wildlife Managers in the Northeast and Midwest Alleviate Impacts of Climate Change on Species and Ecosystems. June 29, 2015, USGS Newsroom.