Subcontinental heat wave triggers terrestrial and marine, multi-taxa responses
AuthorRuthrof, Katinka X.
Breshears, David D.
Fontaine, Joseph B.
Froend, Ray H.
Miller, Ben P.
Mitchell, Patrick J.
Wilson, Shaun K.
van Keulen, Mike
Enright, Neal J.
Law, Darin J.
Hardy, Giles E. St. J.
AffiliationUniv Arizona, Sch Nat Resources & Environm
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherNATURE PUBLISHING GROUP
CitationRuthrof, Katinka & Breshears, David & Fontaine, Joseph & Froend, Ray & Matusick, George & Kala, Jatin & Miller, Ben & Mitchell, Patrick & Wilson, Shaun & van Keulen, Mike & J. Enright, Neal & Law, Darin & Wernberg, Thomas & Hardy, Giles. (2018). Subcontinental heat wave triggers terrestrial and marine, multi-taxa responses. Scientific Reports. 8. 10.1038/s41598-018-31236-5.
Rights© The Author(s) 2018. Open Access. This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Collection InformationThis item from the UA Faculty Publications collection is made available by the University of Arizona with support from the University of Arizona Libraries. If you have questions, please contact us at email@example.com.
AbstractHeat waves have profoundly impacted biota globally over the past decade, especially where their ecological impacts are rapid, diverse, and broad-scale. Although usually considered in isolation for either terrestrial or marine ecosystems, heat waves can straddle ecosystems of both types at subcontinental scales, potentially impacting larger areas and taxonomic breadth than previously envisioned. Using climatic and multi-species demographic data collected in Western Australia, we show that a massive heat wave event straddling terrestrial and maritime ecosystems triggered abrupt, synchronous, and multi-trophic ecological disruptions, including mortality, demographic shifts and altered species distributions. Tree die-off and coral bleaching occurred concurrently in response to the heat wave, and were accompanied by terrestrial plant mortality, seagrass and kelp loss, population crash of an endangered terrestrial bird species, plummeting breeding success in marine penguins, and outbreaks of terrestrial wood-boring insects. These multiple taxa and trophic-level impacts spanned >300,000 km(2)-comparable to the size of California-encompassing one terrestrial Global Biodiversity Hotspot and two marine World Heritage Areas. The subcontinental multi-taxa context documented here reveals that terrestrial and marine biotic responses to heat waves do not occur in isolation, implying that the extent of ecological vulnerability to projected increases in heat waves is underestimated.
NoteOpen access journal.
VersionFinal published version
SponsorsWestern Australian State Centre of Excellence for Climate Change, Woodland and Forest Health; Sir Walter Murdoch Distinguished Collaborator Award from Murdoch University; U.S. National Science Foundation [EF-1340649, EF-1550756]; Consortium for Arizona-Mexico Arid Environments; Arizona Agriculture Experiment Station; Australian Research Council Discovery Early Career Researcher Grant [DE170100102]