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Webinar: Forecasting the flock: using species distribution models to evaluate the effects of climate change on future seabird foraging aggregations in the California Current System

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Thursday, 19 January 2017, 12:00

Thursday, January 19, 2017. 12:00 PM. Webinar: Forecasting the flock: using species distribution models to evaluate the effects of climate change on future seabird foraging aggregations in the California Current System. Dori Dick, NOAA Fisheries. Sponsored by NOAA Center for Satellite Applications and Research. More information here.

Ocean management and conservation in the face of climate change depends on
robust understanding of current relationships between species and their environment. This study built spatially-explicit models to identify multispecies seabird foraging aggregations (hotspots) in the California Current System and assessed how locations may shift due to climate change. Models for 30 species were built and validated using 15 years (1997-2012) of seabird survey data. We predicted species-specific relative densities during February, May, July and October under three scenarios and assessed current relationships between SST, sea surface height (SSH) and chlorophyll-a concentration (Chl-a) to predict future scenarios. Standardized predicted means were averaged by foraging ecotype to create scenario-specific multispecies hotspot maps by month. Results suggest suitable foraging habitat will shift offshore and north, diving and surface feeders will be the most sensitive to a changing climate, and some seamounts may retain suitable habitat in the future.

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