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Direct and indirect climate change effects on shorebirds in the Arctic: An analysis on the potential population dynamics and life history changes

Eikelenboom, A.M.E. (2016) Direct and indirect climate change effects on shorebirds in the Arctic: An analysis on the potential population dynamics and life history changes. Research Project 1 (minor thesis), Ecology and Evolution.

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Abstract

Global warming causes many changes in the Arctic and therefore alter living conditions of the Arctic fauna. Part of this fauna are the migratory shorebirds who breed in the Arctic. Currently these shorebirds suffer from severe population declines. To get more insight into the decline, this essay focuses on the direct and indirect effects of climate change on the population dynamics and life history characteristics of migratory shorebirds in the Arctic. From the analysis, negative effects on shorebird populations are expected in the long term by potential mismatches with arthropods lifecycles and the increased predation pressure, because predators, although they decline in number, switch to alternative prey such as shorebirds. Yet, direct climate effects of warmer and longer summer periods, the short term higher activity and the increased number of lifecycles of arthropods during summer and life history adaptations of shorebirds might compensate for negative effects or might positively affect shorebird population dynamics. However, climate change effects are more complex because life history adaptations of different climate effects might counteract each other. Moreover life history adaptations might have a feedback on the species interactions themselves. Finally population dynamics are also influenced by changing conditions on other parts of their migratory flyway, invasion from other species from the south and interference of humans. Thereby, shorebirds species differ in their reaction on climate change which is also related to location. Therefore this essay can be used as a guideline to find out which factors are influencing a single species and together with research on changes during their whole migratory flyway more insights into population dynamics and potential adaptive abilities of shorebirds can be obtained.

Item Type: Thesis (Research Project 1 (minor thesis))
Degree programme: Ecology and Evolution
Thesis type: Research Project 1 (minor thesis)
Language: English
Date Deposited: 15 Feb 2018 08:11
Last Modified: 15 Feb 2018 08:11
URI: http://fse.studenttheses.ub.rug.nl/id/eprint/13741

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