February 1st to 5th 2016
Olhão, Portugal
Tweet #MaresConference2016

Marine canopies in a changing environment: projecting the distribution of species of Cystoseira under alternative climatic scenarios.

Oral Presentation
Future Oceans
Wednesday, February 3, 2016 -
11:45 to 12:00

Buonomo, R. 1 Chefaoui, R. 2 Airoldi, L. 3 Serrão, E.A. 4

1Centre of Marine Sciences (CCMAR), University of Algarve, Campus de Gambelas, 8005-139 Faro, Portugal
2Centre of Marine Sciences (CCMAR), University of Algarve, Campus de Gambelas, 8005-139 Faro, Portugal
3Dipartimento di Scienze Biologiche, Geologiche ed Ambientali, University of Bologna, Via S. Alberto 163, 48123 Ravenna, Italy
4Centre of Marine Sciences (CCMAR), University of Algarve, Campus de Gambelas, 8005-139 Faro, Portugal

Canopy forming algae are key ecosystem engineers helping to sustain ecosystem services and function in rocky shore habitats. However, these valuable species are globally threatened by cumulative anthropogenic impacts. Increase in mean SST and extreme events such as heat waves linked to global climate change are considered important drivers of future loss of these species. Evidence of accelerating climate change enhances the need of predicting the consequences for species distribution and range shifts in order to plan effective mitigation strategies.We selected three species of canopy-forming algae belonging to the genus Cystoseira (Phaeophyta) that are representative of European Mediterranean and Atlantic ranges for this genus, C. tamariscifolia, C. amentacea and C. compressa. We compiled georeferenciated information from about 100 peer-reviewed publications and 2 online databases reporting their distribution in the Mediterranean and close North Atlantic Ocean. We modelled the environmental niche and found suitable habitats for the three macroalgae throughout their entire range of distribution. We examined the environmental response of each species as well as the most relevant variables defining their co-occurrence. Then we simulated the shift in predicted range of distribution and risk of extinction using the most contrasting IPCC scenarios of greenhouse gas concentration and the corresponding change in local climatic conditions. This knowledge enhances the prediction of spatially variable climate change impacts for these ecologically valuable ecosystems and the development of site-specific conservation priorities.
keywords: 
niche modelling, distribution shift, extinction risk, macroalgae

Log in to upload your presentation