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Klimagune Summer School Training Caravan Seminars UPV BC3

Joint Seminar Programme EHU-BC3: 3rd seminar 2nd of February, 2011

Iberian forests against global change: projected impacts and adaptation mechanisms.

Seminar given by Prof. Miguel A. Zavala (Director CIFOR-INIA)

Date: February 2nd

Location: Sarriko, B03, 12:00

Global Change is one of the main threats for the maintenance of biological diversity and key ecosystem services. In Spain, land use transformations and climate change are two main drivers of Global Change. During the 1990-2000 period, land use changes have driven an important reconfiguration of forest areas, including a slightly decrease in forest surface and an increase in fragmentation (OSE, 2007). Aside from this, changes in phenology and species distribution have also been documented and are caused by climate change (Peñuelas y Boada 2003). Forecasting the future, a drastic decrease in potential forest occupation area is predicted, especially for mountainous species, together with a progressive decrease in productivity in middle and South Iberian peninsula (OSE 2007; Benito Garzón et al. 2008), Bioclimatic models provide a first approach to the study of species under a changing climate, but they avoid key biological mechanisms such as local adaptation, plasticity or the species dispersal capabilities. First, forest species can have an intra-specific genetic variability, as a consequence of their movements since last glaciations (Hampe y Petit, 2005). Therefore, preliminary results show how local adaptation can derive into important intra-specific divergences in the forest species response to climate change. Equally, in distribution models, the species dispersal capability provides more realistic estimations for the species distribution. Stochastic plot occupation models (SPOM) parameterized with more than 70,000 observation points from the second and third National Forestry Inventories (IFN) (which differ in a temporal gap of approximately 10 years) suggest that fragmentation bears to a significant decrease in the number of species as related to species distribution model results. However, it also shows that specific dispersion paths are related to an increase in the community resilience (Montoya et al. 2008). Finally, we discuss the relevance of conservation and restoration strategies in ecosystems as key policies that can lead to counteract the effects of global change effects (Rey Benayas et al., 2009). Particularly, the development of models that allow us to add critical thresholds to the resilience of communities with the aim of assuring the restoration success and optimizing conservation strategies.


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