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Sci Rep. 2017 Dec 6;7(1):17102. doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-17105-7.

Heterogeneous responses of temperate-zone amphibian populations to climate change complicates conservation planning.

Author information

1
U.S. Geological Survey, Fort Collins Science Center, 2150 Centre Ave., Bldg C, Fort Collins, CO, 80526, USA. muthse@usgs.gov.
2
Pennsylvania State University, Department of Ecosystem Science and Management, University Park, PA, 16802, USA.
3
U.S. Geological Survey, Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, Laurel, MD, 20708, USA.
4
Department of Evolutionary Biology and Environmental Studies, University of Zurich, 8057, Zurich, Switzerland.
5
Info Fauna KARCH, 2000, Neuchâtel, Switzerland.
6
U.S. Geological Survey, Aldo Leopold Wilderness Research Institute, 790 E. Beckwith, Missoula, MT, 59801, USA.
7
Université Lyon 1, UMR 5023 - LEHNA, Laboratoire d'Ecologie des Hydrosystèmes Naturels et Anthropisés, 69100, Villeurbanne, France.
8
Redpath Museum, McGill University, 859 Sherbrooke St. W. Montreal, Quebec, H3A 2K6, Canada.
9
U.S. Geological, Survey Forest and Rangeland Ecosystem Science Center, 970 Lusk St, Boise, ID, 83706, USA.
10
CNRS, PSL Research University, EPHE, UM, SupAgro, IRD, INRA, UMR 5175 CEFE, F-34293, Montpellier, France.
11
U.S. Geological Survey, Western Ecological Research Center, San Diego Field Station, 4165 Spruance Road, San Diego, CA, 92101, USA.
12
University of Montana, Division of Biological Sciences, 32 Campus Dr., Missoula, MT, USA.
13
U.S. Geological Survey, Forest and Rangeland Ecosystem Science Center, 600 E. Park Ave, Port Angeles, WA, 98362, USA.
14
U.S. Geological Survey, Forest and Rangeland Ecosystem Science Center, 3200 SW Jefferson Way, Corvallis, OR, 97331, USA.
15
Simon Fraser University, Department of Biological Sciences, 8888 University Drive Burnaby, British Columbia, CANADA V5A 1S6, Canada.
16
Naturalis Biodiversity Center, 6.4.16 Sylvius Bldg, 2333 CR, Leiden, The Netherlands.
17
California Department of Fish and Wildlife, 5341 Ericson Way, Arcata, CA, 95521, USA.
18
U.S. Geological Survey, Western Ecological Research Center, Point Reyes National Seashore, Point Reyes, CA, 94956, USA.
19
Association Objectifs Biodiversités (OBIOS), 12 rue du docteur Gilbert, 17250, Pont l'Abbé d'Arnoult, France.
20
U.S. Geological Survey, Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, SO Conte Anadromous Fish Laboratory, One Migratory Way, Turners Falls, MA, 01376, USA.

Abstract

The pervasive and unabated nature of global amphibian declines suggests common demographic responses to a given driver, and quantification of major drivers and responses could inform broad-scale conservation actions. We explored the influence of climate on demographic parameters (i.e., changes in the probabilities of survival and recruitment) using 31 datasets from temperate zone amphibian populations (North America and Europe) with more than a decade of observations each. There was evidence for an influence of climate on population demographic rates, but the direction and magnitude of responses to climate drivers was highly variable among taxa and among populations within taxa. These results reveal that climate drivers interact with variation in life-history traits and population-specific attributes resulting in a diversity of responses. This heterogeneity complicates the identification of conservation 'rules of thumb' for these taxa, and supports the notion of local focus as the most effective approach to overcome global-scale conservation challenges.

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