>> Hey folks, it’s Kevin Matteson, welcome to another podcast about the Issues and Biodiversity Articles. As always, it’s good if you read the articles or this week before listening to this. This conversation is about climate change and the articles, the required readings in that to do assignment in your course. I am joined for this one by Shafkat Khan and Katie Feilin, both of whom are visiting assistant professors at Miami University with project Dragonfly. If you want to jump ahead, we talk a little bit about some cool climate change initiatives that Chef got and Katie are working on here on Oxford. I definitely recommend you listening to that, but if you want to jump right to the articles, we get to those. The first article around 5 minutes or so into the podcast. That is the Chen et al article about rain shifts associated with climate warming. We get into the oceans article about the impacts of climate change on the world’s marine ecosystems. That article, we jump into that around minutes and around minutes, we all talk about how we’re happy we’re not marine biologists, because so much of what’s happening in the ocean is overwhelming and depressing and hard to think about too much, some random discussions mixed in. A minutes, we get into chauffeurs article, which is about the broad footprint of climate change from genes to biomes to people. There’s a lot in that article to break down, and talk about. So as always, drop me an e-mail at email@example.com. If you want to give some feedback on this or just ask questions or anything like that. I’m happy to hear from you, and also you can call me at – – – – – – – – – . Thanks for listening and we’ll get right into it. All right, enjoy. Okay, welcome folks. It is time for our fourth podcast about climate change as time for issues and biodiversity , and this is Kevin Matteson. I think I said own name there. >> [LAUGHTER] thought will have fun with that. >> Yeah, it’s the way you can fix that. Anyway, and I’m here with Shafkat. >> I’m Shafkat Khan. I teach with graduate flight. >> All right, and Katie Feilin. >> Hello everyone. >> All right, so here we are. It’s a snowy day in Ohio and we’re joining each other via Skype to talk about climate change, and you guys actually have done some very cool work trying to engage the community of Oxford, Ohio and beyond in climate change awareness in art. So I was thinking, I just have you guys share a little bit about that because you’ve got some cool events coming up that people might not be able to attend, but it would be interested in hearing about. >>Katie you want to go? >>Sure the origin story is long, and starts with Shafkat. So it’s funny that he chooses to me. >> [LAUGHTER]. >> Both of us have a scientific disposition to study climate change, and so Shafkat can talk about his research a little bit later, but I broadly speak in, look at primates that responds to changes in their environment, including climate change. We were sitting around one day thinking about how who analyzed the data every day and are just in it and you can see from these pieces of literature that we read for this thing, and the scientific community, there’s no doubt but we are living in rural Ohio. It’s interesting getting out that we are impacted by it, but people aren’t talking about climate change here. You here about cooler views. You talk about sea level rises and it seems like someone else’s issue, and it’s also very polarizing, and so how do we get through that? I think for me part of it was reading papers from dragonfly students and the importance of art and engagement in building emotional connections and so we started floating around this idea of how could we communicate and engage in conversation about climate change through art. I’m going to have shortcut correctly and all the things I said incorrectly. >> That captures a good majority of our work, and the impression that Katie was talking about. So if you’re looking at the Chen et al article in this discussion, that’s a research that I did for my dissertation and still I’m getting work or work out from that research, and to continue in other temperate forests and so on. But my work was in tropical mountains looking at how temperature or other potential abiotic and biotic factors affects pieces distributions. Trying to understand what is happening and what will be happening with climate change in this very diverse ecosystems, very unique ecosystems. But it’s difficult to look at a graph or even sharing stories of those ecosystems but falls back in the temperate zone, to get them to engage or think about climate change. So we wanted to shift lanes a little bit for our own discomfort sake and learning sake and we are well trained as scientists who think about these graphs and data, etc, but that’s not how the public thinks about climate change. They want to know what they’re experiencing in their backyard. Perhaps it’s snowing today in Ohio, and yet it’s a sticking to the ground, and we can offer the inside that with climate change in recent years, at least, we’re seeing warmer winters rather than warmer summers, which is driving the main trend of temperature change at least. So but how that data connects to people’s own background and backyard is something that we felt we could address better in our own community and in the spirit of dragonflies. >> A lot of our focus is on feeding community around the community-based conservation or student committees, etc. So once connects what we are thinking about or images about to talk with our community, but at the level and at then scale that the community is interested in. I think just beyond what we have done, I think our work in incorporating the Community Art Center as the venue for inviting the different spheres within the local community. Inviting into a community venue that is beloved. I think that model can work in other places that can be either reluctant or resistant to talking about climate change. >> Yes. >> Just a big picture because we forgot to tell you that we’ve organized the community based art show which is one of the activities that we’re working on. It’s called Changing Climate, Changing Communities. We’re on our second year of doing this. This year, we had about pieces of art. Everything from our youngest was submitted by a four-year-old. We have about a pieces from K through , and then community artists including some semi-professional and professional artists, all reflecting on what climate change means to them and their interpretation. Then we opened it up to the community, including inviting local partners that are actively working on this from the League of Women Voters to some other different organizations and interacting with it. So building the space so people could talk about what climate change means to them in their own life. >> Oftentimes at least in the scientific way of communicating on climate change, it’s been that we tell people about that this specific missed area of climate change impacts that we’re studying or the adaptations, or impacts, or effects that we are dealing with our own little academic bubble. This turns people off because that’s not what they’re thinking about. So there is a famous thinker out of, I think University of UT Arlington maybe, Katharine Hayhoe, who was big into connecting climate change with faith-based conservation movements. But also she spearheaded the National Climate Assessment that come out the last time, I think or late . To quote her, “The best thing you can do about climate change is to talk about because it is when we read these papers that we’re reading, it seems really abstract but also seems much beyond the personal scale that we live our lives in. Our work hopefully connects some of the ideas. Catastrophic that we see, say California, Australia fires or the connections we feel in our local community and translating that on a more human level. So that as Katharine says that we promote and instigate conversations so that the next time we think, or do something, or when action is presenting in front of us that connects to climate change, we at least think about it rather getting totally turned off by this global change that is driving species shifts, genetic shifts, etc. >> Well, that all sounds great. I’m just curious if you guys have an example of an RPS that has been submitted to the exhibition that you’ve been curating that stood out for you. Maybe could just quickly share about something like that. >> I think that would have been more Carey. I didn’t have chance to fully, deeply look at the exhibition without the organization around that they’ve been doing so. >> There are a couple of pieces that really hit me this year. We have some great, amazing pieces from some professional artists. One of them is connected to me personally because it was deforested area with a kid holding a teddy bear. I got into the climate changed realm because I was looking at carbon credit exchanges and how they connected to deforestation particularly in Indonesia. But that was a very powerful piece from a professional artist. I really like some of the student art. One that I’m thinking about right now is hourglass, and it has this happy world and then on the other side, it’s the grains of sand go down this destructive world. So how kids are processing these complex ideas and what they’re feeling. To me, there’s a power in having maybe not refined artistic skills that then shows that a third-grader is reflecting on this, and they’re feeling this frustration but also hope and that’s one of the spirits that we tried to engage with. That it’s not just the spare, but you can do something, and it can make a difference. >> Totally. I think eco-anxiety is a major issue and with our kids, you want them to know about these issues and if they’re going to be processing in any way. Art can certainly help with that and figuring out how we balance the emotions that go along with these conversations. So very cool. Well, that’s one of the best things we can do is talk about all this. So that’s what we’re trying to do here, talk about climate change. So maybe we’ll start with this Chen et al article which is titled, “Rapid Rain Shifts of Species Associated with High Levels of Climate Warming”. Chafka, why don’t you start us off our first article here that we’re going to talk about. >> The article is compiling data from published literature and trying to quantify and in scientific jargon, that’s a meta-analysis. It’s looking at overall levels of brain shift, meaning the species changed its distribution from either close to the equator to farther away from the equator, or in the case of mountain ranges from lower in the elevation to higher in the elevation on the mountains and closer to the equator or lower in the mountain would be the warmer temperature regimes. Then if you go away from the equator or go up the mountain, it is colder temperature. So species are tracking climate change via change in temperature. So the premise of any of this researches to see if species are really tracking the elevated temperature by shifting the distribution. The neat thing about their work like Chen et al is that they look at a number of different taxonomical group, as well as within the taxonomical group and separate them out. So having enough resolution in their data, but at the same time not necessarily piling them altogether which had been, in their view, a shortcoming for the previous big meta-analysis on this topic. I think that’s the citation number . >> I was just wondering how you thought- >> What you thought about that because I thought it was interesting thing and I could have noted going. This looks like a response to a reviewer comment of one of the difference is they saw between looking at the individual species and collection of taxonomic group per region, which is what they did in the chain paper and the variation that they saw. So how much do you think that was an artifact of the methods that they used versus the data being more robust or I think they also had a time difference. >> Yeah, I think as it is with any of the science, we get smarter with time. I think the way they parsed out taxonomic groups definitely is a better way of approaching this area of studies because if you’re talking about changing distributions, we are essentially talking about dispersal or ability disperse, which is conserved within the taxonomic groups. What I mean by that is spiders will not necessarily move at the same rate as birds will, or the birds will not move at the same rate as plants will. So I think that was a definitely good way of approaching this. Then at the same time, I think if I understood the figure one correctly, it still compiles a bit too much in figure A, it’s compiling a bunch of data that is closer to the equator as was farther to the equator. On B, it’s compiling both tropical and temperate mountains and we know in both cases the temperature regimes are the distances associated with traveling pole-ward or up the mountain would be different than just within biome differences or across biome differences would be greater. I think in which case, put an absolute amount of shift on that loses some, I would say mechanistic insight. So what I mean, for example, I went to UGA, which is close to the Appalachian Mountains on its southern edge and I could go up the mountain and see Rhododendron and red naples in the south. They would be in far higher up in the mountain, which would be the new moon forest type at the mountain top. But the temperature range from the species perspective at any given location will be much higher figure because of seasonality or seasonal fluctuation than it would be for tropical mountains. So tropical mountains, the temperatures are far more consistent and doesn’t fluctuate as much within the year. So what that translates to is this. If you walk a meters up the mountain in tropical mountains, you’d see more turnover in species composition or community type than you would see in temperate mountains. [OVERLAPPING]. >> I feel like much of their study to tropical mountains, they say, and most of the data we analyze are from the temperate zone and from tropical mountains and they referred to their supplemental table. So that’s a really interesting point. I had not thought about the areas with that experience seasons are going to have perhaps more variability naturally in the distribution of things. For at least the animals, I mean the plants, they’re kind of restricted in how often they can move. But with animals, you can move more. So I wonder if what you just said it would be the case for the faunas or the flora, the turn over would be greater. >> Yeah, to some extent. So just to finish up responding to Katie’s idea. So I think I would have liked figure one at least separated out by some biomes. So going [OVERLAPPING] to not really fine resolution, but bit more biocentric analysis of it. >> Yeah, it’s interesting because I picked up on that point that Kevin made in one of my favorite papers that we didn’t talk about in our first podcast and if you haven’t listened to it, you should. [OVERLAPPING] [LAUGHTER] I try to get likes on this even though we [OVERLAPPING] don’t have a button on the workshop. But Danson’s paper that test these ideas on mountains being higher in the tropics due to the points that Chaka was saying about both niche sites and specializations in tropical regions, but also temperate versus tropical. An animal that lives here in Ohio, since I’m looking out the window, it has to go from snow today, we’ve had below to in the summer, where a tropical species, it would be rare to hit that range. So what does that mean about your adaptations to variations in the environment, in your plasticity. So the interesting thing that they mentioned, those two different points that I would have loved to see a comparison of tropical mountains and temperate mountains in temperate zones and tropical zones to have more robust picture of what’s actually going on with these shifts. >> To go back to what Kevin started talking about and what Katie just talks about, it connects really well in thinking about how much more specialized symbiotic relationships are partnered relationships that are on tropical mountains. So even if, say, orchid fly can live its temperature range, it can move, it can distribute, it can disperse to a new location, and it can tolerate that temperature. But if its host plant cannot move up because of the specialized relationship thus effective distribution for that particular fly or organism in tropical mountains is much shorter than the range of temperature or the distribution it can tolerate. Whereas we see a lot fewer of those are really specialized symbiotic relationships in temperate or border your northern latitudes are away from the pole. So I think in this case, passing out these by, go back to figure such as A or figure one and , passing them out by [NOISE] would’ve been nice. But plants do move. What Sam doesn’t talk about is, plants do move and while other organisms or other taxa or are able to somewhat keep up with climate change as they’re showing here, plants lag well behind in keeping up with changing or cracking it optimal temperature both pole-ward as well as up the mountain. >> Yeah. It’s interesting that they talk about lag times quite a bit for why it doesn’t always track it and they say, this is on page , [LAUGHTER] of this journal article, this page two. >> We read all the , pages before that page two. >> Yeah, of course. It says, ”At least three processes are likely to generate the high diversity range shifts among species.” Then it says, ”Time delays in specific species responses, physiological constraints, and alternative and interacting drivers of change.” >> Right. >> So I guess the first example for the time delays in species responses as if they are habitat specialist or a mobile species like an individual plant. They cannot move and they can certainly move through time as a population like you are getting at their shelf cap. Then the physiological constraints, they’re different just like an overall sensitivity to temperature at a certain level where above which or below which they can’t live. I think that’s one of the interesting things that one of the other articles gets into is this thresholds and this tipping points. The concepts of that as just being something that, you might have adaptation and some change that these species are moving and shifting and it could almost make you feel like, ”Yeah, living world is adaptable, it can find a way.” But the idea of thresholds and tipping points up to a certain point and then it’s just [inaudible]. >> Right. >> What’s that favorite conservation biology quote that I always get wrong. It’s like taking out bolts of a plane, we never know how many bolts we can remove, but at one point, we know that the plane is going to crash to the ground. >> Yeah, I always kept the rivets, [OVERLAPPING] window seats. [LAUGHTER] Because I have that stupid analogy, but it’s a good one. It definitely the same idea of a tipping point. >> In the three factors that you just talked about, [NOISE] all three of the interactive drivers have changed. I think is interesting because if you look at figure , where they’re talking about some [NOISE] taxonomic groups that are actually moving in the opposite direction of the temperature change. So they’re moving south rather than north. This is a study in Britain. It’s the same pattern we see in tree species migration in North America. The Forest Service has a big dataset so we can really parse out of many different species moving in one direction rather. It turns out that a good number of species do move north, and we can think of them as more temperature sensitive species, which I guess would be the individual physiological constraints driving the change. But then, some are able to tolerate the increase or change condition. They stay put at least or survive in the warmer location for a little bit, and they’re able to move a little bit as well. Then we see in the Forest Service data in the US trees as well as the figure suggests that there are some species that are able to move against the temperature gradient or the way the optimal temperature distribution’s moving. So they move south. The explanation which is the alternative and interacting diverse of change is that, [NOISE] species that were previously constrained by interaction with other species in the warmer boundaries, now that those warmer boundaries, the niches are opening up by species moving north, and these more generally species are able to tolerate the warmer temperatures, but previously were unable to compete with the competitive step now are moving north. So these are able to now expand their ranges. >> Yeah, and they give the other example of the birds going down the mountain because the warming actually opened up or changed moisture regimes in the mountain. >> Yeah. >> So yeah, when we think of climate change, we think of temperature as being the driving factor for the changes we’re seeing, but sometimes it causes these other things that will affect and opening up competition, and niches, and all the things you’re talking about. >> Yeah. >> It’s more complicated than just all the species marching up the mountain, and we often think of [LAUGHTER] marching north or whatever. >> Yeah, there is a really good study from California mountains that showed the plants we’re tracking at least in that particular area. The moisture regime that it’s getting wetter in the lower elevations, that’s why they’re able to move there, which they said that in the Shaffer’s paper. But I guess so the idea is that I would send it out, setting up this idea that while we are able to measure species movement with climate change, or range changes with climate change, and they’re showing a certain amount of change that corresponds to temperature change, but the caveat is that it’s not necessarily going to be unidirectional given the complexity of the ecosystems and the populations and the species and the three factors that Kevin highlighted play into it. But some species will track other variables besides temperature. Some species will be not constrained by abiotic factors such as temperature, moisture, but more constrained by factors such as competition from their competitors. For lack of that competition, there’ll be able to colonize empty spaces and so on. >> Yeah, it’s funny because this article, it makes it seem like it’s all so simple, and when I read the abstract, I was just like, “Okay, higher elevations at a median rate of meters per decade and higher latitudes at a median rate of . kilometers per decade” It seemed so simple, but then as you read it, it’s like, “Okay, well, not all of them are moving in the way we projected” It totally varies based on like you’re talking about [inaudible] what habitat biome you’re in, and what taxonomic group you’re looking after yourself and go in the opposite direction. I guess in terms of messaging from climate change, you don’t want the message to be so messy that people just throw their hands up and are like, “What is the one thing.” So in the abstract they put this very clear [LAUGHTER] and even this title is very clear, but then they go into all the nuances the in the actual article. >> Yeah. >> I don’t know. Katie, did you have a takeaway on this article? >> Yeah. Well, I might take away a little broader that I always struggle with science and nature articles because they try to make them so short. I like data. That’s what I’ve realized. It’s funny we know that climate change works better with stories, but if you want to convince me of something, I need data, I need numbers, I need to get in the down and dirty, and so just looking at taxonomic groups and we just defined it broadly. Well, are you talking about the level of birds, or mammals? But in their differences in figure , they’re looking at different types of invertebrates there. So it’s not the message that we want, but I think it’s one of the pieces of evidence that says these systems are complicated and this is complicated. >> Yeah, that’s definitely, and I missed seeing the methods in the [LAUGHTER]. >> Yeah, and like, “What taxonomic groups did you do and what countries? You compared one island to North America? [LAUGHTER] How did you incorporate range size and dispersal limitations that we talked about?” But then when I get a page article I also feel [LAUGHTER] I’m like, “Why is this so long? Why can’t you write this short?” >> So I think we’ve maybe switched oceans unless [inaudible] you have anything to that article? >> No. As I guess we will see with any of the articles we’re reading this week that climate change is not necessarily a single source, single variable, single effect, and single message change. It’s messing with the Earth’s climatic balance that has so many different levels of impact. Yeah, I’m glad that we’re reading the two articles because I think they deal with them even more. >> Yeah, and I was really glad to see. So this other article is, well I’ll try to pronounce this first name, Hoegh-Guldberg and Bruno, the impact of climate change on the world’s marine ecosystems. It’s a review paper, and they start off with percent of Earth’s surface is covered by oceans. How important it is. Somewhere in here, they talk about it’s percent of the protein in the world comes from fish. This article is really about how climate change can affect the oceans. Of course, we often think of the melting sea ice and ice caps on land and the latter causing potential ocean rise, right? But some other things that weren’t here were like how heating can just expand the volume of water, right? So just absorbing that the ocean is absorbing heat, and that has been measurable, especially in the top. I think a meters. At some point they give a couple different, but the surface area of the ocean is really absorbing some of this heat energy and that can expand the volume of the water, which also leads to ocean rise. Then they also talk about acidification of the ocean and how that will affect various species. So I think those were some of the main things they were covering. They talk about . pH units or changing over a -year period, and . pH units over a decade. So they were giving some of these statistics and they have some figures, these maps of the globe with different temperature anomalies and pH change, and CO or carbonate, I guess that is CO . I think that’s what that’s referring to there. So overall, I think it’s just bringing awareness of what’s happening to the ocean [LAUGHTER]. I don’t know what did you think of this in a way, do you have anything you have, idea or interesting about this one? >> Many thresholds will soon be extinct, that was one of my underlining. It’s interesting the order that you read these papers and the order that I re-read these papers. I read Shaffer again, and then I read this one on the marine system and then finally the meta-analysis, and I last this paper with a very strong feeling of doom and gloom, which I didn’t get from the other two papers, and I thought that was a really interesting thing. It was then interesting that it ended with the school, what should we do about this? It says, “Natural resource management must also remain flexible in order to absorb the sudden and non-linear changes. They’re likely to characterize the behavior of most of the ecosystems in the future.” This is my own scientific pet peeve, and I’ve done this. So I’m guilty of this, that we talk about these issues. We talk about the science and then we try to connect it to the general public. But our messages, we want it to be important. But what does it mean and then the whole thing about this is, well natural resource management has to be flexible. We don’t know, so be ready for anything. So that was my non-scientific take away of it. >> It’s a touche at the end. >> Yeah. >> I’ve written those. I just wrote one of those and it was killing me as I was writing the concluding note. People should care about this and we need to plan better using this data. But the reality of knowing that no one in that system was actually going to read that paper. >> I personally, it’s probably more. I guess you could measure rates of extinction in terrestrial ecosystems versus marine ecosystems from climate change, and that could be one measure of change. Gut feeling is that I’m just happy, I don’t at this point study marine ecosystems. I’d be perennially depressed, and I just think that’s the reality of working in marine environments. For example, you are changing CO concentration in air, which can make plants percent more efficient. Plants more efficient in using CO in photosynthesis, percent more yield say. In oceanic or marine ecosystems, it’s actually dissolving the organisms. Yeah, so it’s just a complete, I don’t know, a different level of dissolution of any. >> I know. [LAUGHTER]. [OVERLAPPING]
who also works in a tropical system that is being deforested and burned. But I feel the exact same way that, just the justification of what that impact is. >> Forget the temperature change for these, yeah. >> Right. >> Yeah, and on top of that they had talked about, “The Day After Tomorrow” scenario, which I don’t know if you guys saw that movie. I’d be dating myself slightly, I’m not sure about it. I don’t know when that movie came out actually, I’ve got to look it up now. But basically, the ocean circulation, the pattern of the ocean currents reverses, and it causes this rapid freezing of the North American continent. Of course, it’s Hollywood solely, so like these wolves come down from Canada, and are eating people that are barely surviving in Manhattan, which is totally frozen and covered in snow. Then everyone’s trying to cross the border into Mexico, and Mexico is like, “No, you [LAUGHTER] can’t come in,” which is very intriguing reversal. But the whole idea of refugees going in opposite directions to this stuff. When that movie came out, I was like, “Could this even happen, could this really happen?” It’s one of those things that I was like, “Yeah, theoretically it could happen, but no, it’s not really to.” But in this article they talk about not reversal of the circulation of different currents, but they talk about the slowing of the thermohaline or meridional overturning circulation, the MOC they call it, as a result of disproportionate heating in earth’s polar regions, and it has major implications for regional climate. >> Yeah. >> More good news [LAUGHTER] with that friend. Yeah, I’ve found that to be an inch really a crazy concept. But yeah, messing with the ocean currents, not a good idea really. >> How that system connects to the terrestrial systems with the importance. So the El Nino-Southern Oscillation lead to droughts in Indonesia and Malaysia, that then promote fires. It also changes the entire weather patterns here in the US, let alone the food sources for Peru. These interactions, I think are really important to note and it’s not just, “Oh, the oceans are in trouble. Okay, that’s fine, I live how many thousands of miles away from the oceans.” But this then impacts the entire system. >> Totally. Yeah. So it’s going to affect everything because the oceans are so critical. Even though we joke about being happy, we don’t study
[LAUGHTER] so depressing. There is that comments in here that in climate change in general, are only five percent are on marine ecosystems based on their study. Anyone that’s listening out there that is doing that kind of studies, thanks for doing it, that’s good. >> Yes. >> That happening. Then the latter part of his paper gives some examples of coral reefs and mangroves, and how will they react, and sea ice melt and polar bears. So a lot of bad things that people already know about, I don’t know if we need to talk about it too much. There’s this one quote that you’d find interesting, “A warmer world would be a sicker world.” >> Yeah, I write that one down too, like definitely, I don’t know if I like that one. >> No, I don’t know if I like it either. This is a good overview for anyone that’s just trying to understand marine ecosystems and climate change. I think it’s a great choice for the course. Yeah, Shafka did you have anything else with this? >> No. I guess, yeah, maybe a feeling that many of our listeners of the podcast like this feel from reading these articles that we really need to get our act together now. >> Yeah, sort of. >> That’s how I feel reading this particular paper. >> Sounds good. So that takes us to our final article, which is the Scheffers and Dee Meester, et al, in “The broad footprint of climate change from genes to biomes to people.” Quite a [LAUGHTER] broad area to cover. But Katie Raj here, talk us through this one. >> Yeah. [LAUGHTER] This is one of those longer papers that they did a really nice job of summarizing their paper both in figures and then this short review. But basically, they looked at how climate change was impacting things on multiple different levels, to the level as narrow as genes, to as broad as community. It was a review papers, so they looked at a whole bunch of other studies. There are a couple of general take-homes; one, they considered different processes and percent showed evidence of climate change in the peer reviewed literature. From a scientist, these are things that we all know, but many people say, “Okay, does this matter?” Well, yes, percent of things showed in. They had a final message that said, “The fact that evidence is missing for some processes is likely more to reflect data deficiencies than the absence of any response to climate change.” They thought that was a really powerful thing. Broadly speaking as I was reading this, I was thinking about what should be our take home messages from our students. This paper highlighted very nicely that there isn’t just one reaction to climate change. So we talked a little bit about latitudinal and elevational changes. When you’re looking at morphology, some species are getting larger, some species are getting smaller, some are having broader ranges, some are having narrow ranges. When you look at all these different things, there’s not just one way to respond to change, which we know intrinsically, but it makes it more complicated situation from probably managers that are trying to plan for this. Then another thing that I thought was interesting was looking at scale, not just the scale that they were examining, but what you can examine looking at different organisms. For example, at the genetic level, it’s easy to see change in short-lived organisms. I studied primates, and so we’re looking at organisms that have generational times as high as every years. Some animals are out there longer than the career of a scientist. You can’t even study that one change, let alone generational changes, and how certain systems you can manipulate with experiments. Well, some you can only do observational studies and then how that changes are, what we can say about that system. So both timescale of study and then also ability to manipulate the system, if that makes sense. So rather than going through all the examples, I thought that it may be interesting since we have with us pollination biologists and the climate change biologists on the line. If you two could think about some examples from your own work where you’ve noticed changes. >> Yeah, well, we’re, actually after we record this, I will be getting on another Skype call with some collaborators. We’re looking at a dataset of butterflies in Northern Illinois and try to figure out what’s happening over long-term, about three decades to their distributions of different species, and so yes, it’s pretty complicated, but in a nutshell, I mean, yeah, but the specialists, so those butterflies that are directly tied to certain habitats seem to be a little bit more susceptible to declines, as we would expect, or is often the case, and then some species that are on the northern edge. So it’s interesting, we’ve got some species on the northern edge of the range and some at the southern edge of their range. So I guess if they’re at the southern edge of the range and there are cool climate butterfly and it’s getting warmer, they just disappear. But if it’s [LAUGHTER] on the northern edge of its range and it’s getting warmer and it’s in Illinois, right? It’s actually should becoming possibly more prevalent, or staying much the same, right? Because you’re just increasing that range, pulling up the cover, if you will, of that range. So it’s what we’ve already read in my experience of the different behaviors depending on the species. >> The evidence today know are from Costa Rican and Peruvian mountains, so Costa Rica and Talamancan mountains and Peru and Andes mountains where plants are responding to warmer temperatures by shifting the distribution, up-slope the way plants could get and walk. They just send propagules up. So one way of studying that is looking at the population structure of a given area over multiple areas, and if you see in one spot that you only find, because trees have long-lived organisms, if there is no recruitment, [OVERLAPPING] only large trees, then you know that it’s a random population from the time when they could recruit, and if you see perhaps up the mountain or in the US, more northern latitudes are going North forward, that there are more offsprings or new recruits than big adult trees, then you can sort of seeing that the species itself is shifting its distribution by sending up new propagules. Yeah, and so we see that in North America as well as in new tropical mountains. So that would be certainly direct evidence of it, and they’re, oh yeah, sorry, [LAUGHTER] because I am thinking about migration. So in terms of ecosystems, tropical mountains are lost and covered by low-hanging clouds. So it’s such a fabulous ecosystem because year-round it’s, given the height, given the elevation, elevation where at which I were, meters or so, meters, it can be to, given the time of the day and given a time of year, it’s so benign. Wonderful. >> You need to say those numbers in Fahrenheit [LAUGHTER]. >> Let me translate that, so is plus is Fahrenheit. So yes, – Fahrenheit is super comfortable and a lot of this moderation happens because of this wonderful cloud cover that rises from the ocean and covers the mountains in the afternoon and etc, so it rains regularly. So that’s a hydrological cycle and that cover of the clouds, low-hanging clouds that are actually below the surface of the canopy itself. So the forest itself is dark, and that creates a unique condition that if you think of a tropical or Epiphytes laid in the cloud forest that has got, not just the trees, but the other branches there, lot of Epiphytes and masses and ferns and orchids and so on. That is all because of the low-hanging cloud covered that brings in low intensity not high-intensity rain but low-intensity moisture throughout the day, and with climate change at the cloud, covers are either disappearing or moving to a higher elevation on the mountain. So it’s changing the fundamental nature of the custom itself. Starting from ecosystem processes such as hydrological flow, or input and that is connected to nitrogen and phosphorus cycles, that is connected to paragenesis, the creation of soils in the canopy that is connected to the habitat structure. Which species are present, if you don’t have that regular input of moisture at low-intensity, then you will have the canopy flora such as the orchids and ferns, etc. So I guess in the spirit of staffers, you can sort of seeing that the change in one variable, the temperature is driving change in cloud cover, which is changing a whole slew of properties within the ecosystem, perhaps changing the fundamental nature of the ecosystem itself. >> Yeah. >> So yeah, [LAUGHTER] we already talked about species moving in and out of any given location. So leave that out for now. >> Yeah, I want to iterate into a couple of different topics, I was talking to another friend who’s a pollination biologist and looked at phenological mismatches, and so that’s basically the timing of different things when they’re not the same. So you have when butterfly comes in, its host plant going to be ready at that time with either flower or whatnot, and so we see this mismatch of the timing of this, but he said, and from his studies that it was the abiotic extremes that we are going to have a larger impact. So if you have all your butterflies or your bees, they are there, and do they have food? Do they not have food? Okay, that’s the problem. But then if you have a crazy snowstorm in July, that’s going to change it or a flood or whatnot, and he was, I think an interesting summary of looking at how biology is changing, but also as are abiotic factors are also changing. That’s just causing a whole different level. So it doesn’t matter if you have adaptations for different temperatures at the giant forest fire comes through and [inaudible] [LAUGHTER]. >> Yeah, I think there was some silver linings, I guess on this that it was that they talk about the adaptability of some species, right? >> Yeah >> So about the resilience of pollinator communities. So they talk about, if one’s like they said this article that looks at honeybees and watermelon pollination, and basically, in that case, the honeybees were decreasing not due to climate change, but due to pathogens and things that are causing honeybee declines generally, right? But the native pollinators, were able to cause results in some resilience of the ecosystem service of pollination by jumping in there when the other, besides why diversity is really good, right? With all this change of climate change, if you have mismatches in phonology, and hopefully you have at least some species there that can jump in pollinate that flower. It does get tricky when you get this super specialized mutualism with pollination, but fortunately, a lot of the studies there are some key examples of pollinators mutualism there, like very direct in linear between two species. But those are pretty rare in nature actually, as they’ve looked more at some of those examples, a lot of them actually have more than one species that actually will jump in and pollinate them. >> Anyway, so we’ll keep our fingers crossed. >> I guess [LAUGHTER] [inaudible] are not necessarily my strong suit, but as I understand from these species interactions, and they’re prominent featuring the ecosystem where I work, that the response to the pollinator plant system is really dependent on the context of how obligate the relationship is or not. So if they’re complementarity, then their reflexes are probably much more robust, meaning if multiple species are able to pollinate one plant, then they would [NOISE] but in context or in cases, but that’s not the case, the effects are much more prominent, I guess. >> Yeah. >> Yeah, we can tell [LAUGHTER]. >> We’re going to change this to the pollinator, I guess. >> Yes. I totally want a pollinators, I guess. [LAUGHTER]. >> Species infection where we haven’t even thought about how the obligate relationships within species such as mycorrhizal fungi that live within the roots of plants or endophytes that live within the roots or leaves, or parasites that live within birds or animals, those subsystems will also change. Fascinating actually to think about. >> Yeah. Well, I like using the pollinator example because I work with primates. So I’m working on this -year database right now. The species consumes about a different plant species, and then also some invertebrates and vertebrates in there too. So I’m trying to look for patterns of change, looking at reproduction and it’s really complicated because they change their diet when there’s a food shortage. Then they change their range size. Then there are all these other factors to have a really clear thing, is this impacting reproduction and reproduction rates? We’re seeing that some have losses of pregnancies earlier. There are all these different strategies of change. So having one consistent story, especially on a species that can live up to years, it’s really complicated. So as my father would say, “It’s job security.” >> [LAUGHTER] Well, I think the [inaudible] from any concepts around climate change and oftentimes, it can be less among our students, but maybe more from a public perception point of view. We see climate change is one problem with one impact and perhaps one solution. It’s not generated by one source, and also the impacts that we were just talking about, they’re so pervasive, it’s really an exciting and interesting time to be a conservationist or biologist. It can be really depressing, I understand that, but also exciting because from a restoration perspective or from a conservation perspective, we are able to put to work all the ideas that we have in conservation or in restoration. How ecosystems are put together, how to mitigate some of the effects, how to either offer captive breeding, etc. So we are able to test our knowledge in [NOISE] the most concrete or hard manner as possible, which I think is an interesting opportunity. But beyond that, as Kevin was talking about, our own work, not just in science, but for size of our engagement, I think it’s high time that folks such as ourselves who care to learn about climate change or want to do something about it don’t just despair reading any of these articles or that they don’t just think it’s and insurmountable problem. It’s a problem that we’ve created together and so we will probably solve this problem together, not individually. >> Yeah. I think that’s a great ending point. I don’t know if I want to open up another topic after such a [inaudible] [LAUGHTER]. >> I say amen. Lets hear that. No, that’s good. I’ll have to work on it. My take away from this last article, it’s tragic what’s happening, but it’s also amazing and beautiful how complex the world is and how all these organisms are responding in this myriad of ways, in very interesting and sometime so unforeseen manners, tragically because some of them are going to not make it. But amazing when they do, when they adapt and find new niches and all these things. So anyway, anyone listening? [LAUGHTER] Did you get positives from it? A little more of an understanding of climate change and the way it’s affecting marine systems, terrestrial systems, and species at all different levels. I feel like [inaudible] and I have had our takeaways and our final statement. Katie, do you have anything, though, you want to say before we wrap this one up? >> [inaudible] , You sounded like you had another [OVERLAPPING] >> Just as we are dealing with an [inaudible] public, the other thing that I encounter is, will we prevent climate change or not? I think it has never been a question of whether we will prevent climate change. It’s not binary. It’s how much mitigation we can undertake, how much damage we can control, and the more we can do. So none of the actions that we can undertake is meaningless. It’s all meaningful. It all contributes to dealing with the problem at some level. >> Yeah. I think my concluding thought as we read the academic literature on it this week is, think about how you can talk about this and how you can communicate it. So is there a specific example from the Scheffer article that really spoke to you that you want to share with your community? Are you working on these restoration issues or are you engaging on it in art? So keep making change and being the cool people that you are. >> Awesome. Well, that’s perfect. Thanks for listening and thanks
Katie for joining and talking about all this, and we’ll see you-all next time. Take care. >> Bye. >> Ciao, ciao. >> Hey, folks. It’s Kevin. So thanks for listening and I hope you enjoyed that discussion of climate change. I do want to read one piece of feedback we got that we have received from Jeannie, who wrote and said, “Just a quick e-mail to thank you for the podcast. It’s the missing link in the online learning adventure. We read texts and to students like me who are educators and not people with advanced degrees in science, making sense of the text is so difficult. The podcasts puts the readings into context. Importantly, you were able to criticize the science and research in ways I can’t even begin, to when I’m just struggling to put together what it all means and why the article is selected. Keep them coming, and thanks.” So thanks Jeannie for writing that and sending us the feedback, and thanks to everyone for listening. Right now, it’s March th when I’m recording this and we’re dealing with COVID- , which I imagine when most of you are listening to this closer to mid-April or early April, we’ll still be dealing with. I don’t know where things will stand at that point, but I’m wishing you all well, [LAUGHTER] and healthiness, and I’m hoping that everyone’s doing okay. That’s it for now. Take care, folks.