Population responses to observed climate variability across multiple organismal groups

A - Papers appearing in refereed journals

Le Coeur, C., Storkey, J. and Satu, R. 2021. Population responses to observed climate variability across multiple organismal groups. Oikos. 130 (3), pp. 476-487. https://doi.org/10.1111/oik.07371

AuthorsLe Coeur, C., Storkey, J. and Satu, R.

A major challenge in ecology is to understand how populations are affected by increased climate variability. Here, we assessed the effects of observed climate variability on different organismal groups (amphibians, insects, mammals, herbaceous plants and reptiles) by estimating the extent to which interannual variation in the annual population growth rates (CVλ) and the absolute value of the long-term population growth rate (|log λ|) were associated with short-term climate variability. We used empirical data (≥ 20 consecutive years of annual abundances) from 59 wild populations in the Northern Hemisphere, and quantified variabilities in population growth rates and climatic conditions (temperature and precipitation in active and inactive seasons) calculated over four- and eight-year sliding time windows. We observed a positive relationship between the variability of growth rate (CVλ) and the variability of temperature in the active season at the shorter timescale only. Moreover, |log λ| was positively associated with the variability of precipitation in the inactive season at both timescales. Otherwise, the direction of the relationships between population dynamics and climate variability (if any) depended largely on the season and organismal group in question. Both CVλ and |log λ| correlated negatively with species’ lifespan, indicating general differences in population dynamics between short-lived and long-lived species that were not related to climate variability. Our results suggest that although temporal variation in population growth rates and the magnitude of long-term population growth rates are partially associated with short-term interannual climate variability, demographic responses to climate fluctuations might still be population-specific rather than specific to given organismal groups, and driven by other factors than the observed climate variability.

KeywordsClimate variability; Demography; Lifespan; Long-term series; Organismal group; Population dynamics; Population growth rate; Timescale
Year of Publication2021
Journal citation130 (3), pp. 476-487
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1111/oik.07371
Open accessPublished as ‘gold’ (paid) open access
FunderBiotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council
Funder project or codeBBS/E/00005189
Publisher's version
Accepted author manuscript
Output statusPublished
Publication dates
Online19 Jan 2021
Publication process dates
Accepted11 Dec 2020

Permalink - https://repository.rothamsted.ac.uk/item/98346/population-responses-to-observed-climate-variability-across-multiple-organismal-groups

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