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Climate Change

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Climate-driven state shifts in the Prairie Pothole Region: assessing future impacts relevant to the management of wetland habitats critical to waterfowl

The Prairie Pothole Region (PPR) covers parts of five states and three Canadian provinces. The region contains millions of wetlands that annually produce 50-80% of the continent’s duck population. Previous modeling efforts indicated that climate change would result in a shift of waterfowl habitat from the central PPR to the southeast PPR where the majority of wetlands have been drained. However...
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Climate-driven state shifts in the Prairie Pothole Region: assessing future impacts relevant to the management of wetland habitats critical to waterfowl

The Prairie Pothole Region (PPR) covers parts of five states and three Canadian provinces. The region contains millions of wetlands that annually produce 50-80% of the continent’s duck population. Previous modeling efforts indicated that climate change would result in a shift of waterfowl habitat from the central PPR to the southeast PPR where the majority of wetlands have been drained. However...
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Temporal and spatial patterning of aquatic macroinvertebrate communities in response to changing environmental conditions

An increased understanding of prairie-pothole-wetland macroinvertebrate dynamics is crucial to better inform conservation strategies related to waterfowl production, biodiversity enhancement, and wetland function/health maintenance. Wetlands in general are highly variable in space and time, and wetland macroinvertebrates are adapted to this great variability. Wetland ecosystems are also influenced...
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Temporal and spatial patterning of aquatic macroinvertebrate communities in response to changing environmental conditions

An increased understanding of prairie-pothole-wetland macroinvertebrate dynamics is crucial to better inform conservation strategies related to waterfowl production, biodiversity enhancement, and wetland function/health maintenance. Wetlands in general are highly variable in space and time, and wetland macroinvertebrates are adapted to this great variability. Wetland ecosystems are also influenced...
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Wetland carbon storage and flux in the Prairie Pothole Region

Wetlands significantly contributes to regional, national and global carbon budgets. Because prairie-pothole wetlands have 1) highly productive vegetation and 2) low rates of carbon decomposition, they are ideal systems for accumulating and storing carbon in the soil. However, because prairie-pothole wetlands are located in areas of intense agricultural activity, this important pool of stored...
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Wetland carbon storage and flux in the Prairie Pothole Region

Wetlands significantly contributes to regional, national and global carbon budgets. Because prairie-pothole wetlands have 1) highly productive vegetation and 2) low rates of carbon decomposition, they are ideal systems for accumulating and storing carbon in the soil. However, because prairie-pothole wetlands are located in areas of intense agricultural activity, this important pool of stored...
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Managing upland vegetation as a mitigation strategy for climate change impacts on prairie-pothole wetlands

The goal of this research is to increase knowledge of climate change effects on prairie-pothole wetlands and their ability to provide habitat to breeding waterfowl, and to identify potential upland management strategies with the potential to mitigate negative effects. Wetland simulation models suggest that climate change may result in increased drying of prairie-pothole wetlands as increased...
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Managing upland vegetation as a mitigation strategy for climate change impacts on prairie-pothole wetlands

The goal of this research is to increase knowledge of climate change effects on prairie-pothole wetlands and their ability to provide habitat to breeding waterfowl, and to identify potential upland management strategies with the potential to mitigate negative effects. Wetland simulation models suggest that climate change may result in increased drying of prairie-pothole wetlands as increased...
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Development, application, and refinement of a systems model for prairie wetlands

NPWRC is developing, applying, and refining an integrated, process-based, systems model for prairie-pothole wetlands to facilitate forecasts of how climate and land-use change will affect wetland processes and biota. The Pothole Hydrology Linked System Simulator model (PHyLiSS) simulates changes in hydrology, water chemistry, plant communities, invertebrates, and other biota as a result of altered...
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Development, application, and refinement of a systems model for prairie wetlands

NPWRC is developing, applying, and refining an integrated, process-based, systems model for prairie-pothole wetlands to facilitate forecasts of how climate and land-use change will affect wetland processes and biota. The Pothole Hydrology Linked System Simulator model (PHyLiSS) simulates changes in hydrology, water chemistry, plant communities, invertebrates, and other biota as a result of altered...
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Interactions of consolidation drainage and climate on water-level dynamics, wetland productivity, and waterbirds

Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center (NPWRC) recently completed a project aimed at understanding the impacts of wetland drainage on wetlands that receive drainage water. The biological communities of prairie pothole wetlands evolved in a hydrologically dynamic system due to periodic wet and dry conditions. NPWRC research indicates that relative to wetlands in undrained landscapes, wetlands...
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Interactions of consolidation drainage and climate on water-level dynamics, wetland productivity, and waterbirds

Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center (NPWRC) recently completed a project aimed at understanding the impacts of wetland drainage on wetlands that receive drainage water. The biological communities of prairie pothole wetlands evolved in a hydrologically dynamic system due to periodic wet and dry conditions. NPWRC research indicates that relative to wetlands in undrained landscapes, wetlands...
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Interaction of land use and wet/dry cycles on invertebrate populations of northern prairie wetlands: implications for waterbird habitat conservation

This effort is aimed at understanding how productivity of larger and more permanent wetlands is influenced by a combination of inter-annual hydrological dynamics and land-use impacts. Historically, aquatic-invertebrates productivity and abundance was driven by inter-annual hydrological dynamics because drying periods allow for nutrient cycling and a subsequent pulse of productivity when wet...
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Interaction of land use and wet/dry cycles on invertebrate populations of northern prairie wetlands: implications for waterbird habitat conservation

This effort is aimed at understanding how productivity of larger and more permanent wetlands is influenced by a combination of inter-annual hydrological dynamics and land-use impacts. Historically, aquatic-invertebrates productivity and abundance was driven by inter-annual hydrological dynamics because drying periods allow for nutrient cycling and a subsequent pulse of productivity when wet...
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Integrating climate change scenario planning into National Park Service resource management

Resource managers are tasked with managing complex systems with inherent uncertainty around how those systems might change with time and respond to management actions in a changing climate. Scenario planning—often implemented as a qualitative, participatory exercise for exploring multiple possible futures—is a valuable tool for addressing uncertainty. At the same time, quantitative information on...
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Integrating climate change scenario planning into National Park Service resource management

Resource managers are tasked with managing complex systems with inherent uncertainty around how those systems might change with time and respond to management actions in a changing climate. Scenario planning—often implemented as a qualitative, participatory exercise for exploring multiple possible futures—is a valuable tool for addressing uncertainty. At the same time, quantitative information on...
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Mechanisms, methods, models and management of soil biogeochemical processes in prairie-pothole wetlands

Previous work has shown that Prairie Pothole Region (PPR) wetlands are biogeochemical hotspots, with rapid turnover and transport rates of greenhouse gases (GHG). However, mechanisms controlling GHG fluxes are not well understood, leading to high uncertainty in model estimates of these processes. Additionally, unprecedented changes to land-use and cover in the PPR have potential to alter hydrology...
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Mechanisms, methods, models and management of soil biogeochemical processes in prairie-pothole wetlands

Previous work has shown that Prairie Pothole Region (PPR) wetlands are biogeochemical hotspots, with rapid turnover and transport rates of greenhouse gases (GHG). However, mechanisms controlling GHG fluxes are not well understood, leading to high uncertainty in model estimates of these processes. Additionally, unprecedented changes to land-use and cover in the PPR have potential to alter hydrology...
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Long-term changes in wetland and prairie landscapes

Over the past 50 years, wetlands in the Prairie Pothole Region of the northern Great Plains have experienced a wide range of climatic conditions (severe drought to extreme wet), expansion of invasive species such as hybrid cattail, and disturbances (e.g., grazing, burning, flooding, drainage). In this study, we revisited wetlands that Stewart and Kantrud (1971) studied 50 years ago to evaluate...
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Long-term changes in wetland and prairie landscapes

Over the past 50 years, wetlands in the Prairie Pothole Region of the northern Great Plains have experienced a wide range of climatic conditions (severe drought to extreme wet), expansion of invasive species such as hybrid cattail, and disturbances (e.g., grazing, burning, flooding, drainage). In this study, we revisited wetlands that Stewart and Kantrud (1971) studied 50 years ago to evaluate...
Learn More