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National CASC researchers and colleagues have developed the Fish and Climate Change Database (FiCli) as a searchable directory of peer-reviewed journal articles on fish and climate change to support climate adaptation and management for freshwater fisheries worldwide.

Infographic about the Fish and Climate Change Database (FiCli)
Infographic about the Fish and Climate Change Database (FiCli) (Public domain.)

Exploring diverse responses to climate change

Freshwater fisheries provide food, jobs, and recreation to millions of people around the globe, making maintaining inland fish biodiversity a primary concern for fisheries managers. However, climate change threatens biodiversity and the health of freshwater fish populations.

Increased floods, droughts, temperature changes, and species invasions all have significant impacts on freshwater fish communities. Different fish species respond to such climatic changes in complex and nuanced ways, making it difficult for fisheries researchers and managers to plan for fish conservation and adaptation under a changing climate, especially for understudied species and populations.

To support global freshwater fish conservation and management efforts, National CASC researchers Abigail Lynch and Bonnie Myers, and colleagues created a comprehensive, public database of peer-reviewed literature on how climate change has impacted and will continue to impact freshwater fishes worldwide.

About the FiCli Database

The Fish and Climate Change Database, or FiCli (pronounced fick-lee), is an online database where users can search by country, habitat type, species, management action, fish traits, and more to obtain summarized information on freshwater fish responses to climate change. The database was developed from a primary literature review of English-language, peer-reviewed journal publications across the globe, with publication years between 1987 and 2019.

This database allows for an examination of global patterns in climate change impacts on freshwater fish across five main response categories: phenology, distribution, demographics, assemblage dynamics, and evolutionary processes (Figure 1). Based on the studies identified in their literature review, Lynch, Myers, and Partners developed FiCli used R Shiny to create an interactive tool that can inform fisheries managers and scientists of potential management strategies and adaptation approaches frequently highlighted in the literature.

How to Access FiCli Data

  • Access the FiCli database here.
  • Learn more about the project here.  
  • Explore a story map about the FiCli database here.

Potential Data Applications: 

Anyone interested in the intersection of climate change, freshwater fish, and management is welcome to use this tool. Users can explore fish climate change responses across taxa, thermal guilds, and geographic regions; predict climate vulnerability for understudied species and populations; and examine different management strategies and adaptation approaches.


This work was part of the project “Fish and Climate Change (FiCli) Database: Informing climate change adaptation and management actions for freshwater fishes,” supported by the National CASC.

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