Contact Us
  • Wendy Loya
    Arctic LCC Coordinator

    U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
    1011 East Tudor Road
    Anchorage, Alaska 99503
    (907) 786-3532
  • Paul Leonard
    Arctic LCC Science Coordinator

    U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
    101 12th Avenue, Rm. 216
    Fairbanks, Alaska 99701
    (907) 456-0445
  • Josh Bradley
    Arctic LCC Data Manager

    U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
    101 12th Avenue, Rm. 216
    Fairbanks, Alaska 99701
    (907) 455-1847

New Products from LCC funded Research

Two new reports describe results of efforts supported by the Arctic LCC partnership to understand how the timing of spring arrival affects millions of shorebird nesting in the Arctic each year. This research inversitgates how the timing of insects they eat might be changing as spring comes earlier.

Millions of shorebirds migrate thousands of miles to spend the summer in the Arctic. There they feed in coastal wetlands and estuaries along some of the most productive and pristine habitats on earth. With so much food available, they choose the Arctic for nesting and raising their young, a process repeated every year.  The Arctic LCC partnership is interested in understanding how climate change might affect shorebird populations, and has supported research into how the timing of insects they eat might be changing as spring arrives earlier.

Towards filling this information need, we received two final reports from Rebecca Shaftel (UAA) and Dan Rinella (FWS) on their collaborative project, Modeling Aquatic Insects, with the Shorebird Demographic Network.  In Climate Effects on Arctic Food Resources: Predictive Models for Surface-Available Invertebrate Biomass, the researchers describe the diversity and mean annual modeled biomass of invertebrates that shorebirds consume across 9 sites from Nome, Alaska (USA) to East Bay, Nunavut (Canada).  Warmer temperatures had a positive effect on this food resource availability, with earlier spring warming resulting in earlier insect abundance.  Increased wind had a negative effect on invertebrate availability.   In a follow-up report, Climate Effects on Arctic Food Resources: Retrospective Analysis of Rate of Advancement of Invertebrate Phenology, they used the same models to look back ~60 years to understand how invertebrate food sources for shorebirds have changed across 6 of the shorebird monitoring sites.  Changes in hind-casted invertebrate abundance were greatest at the northernmost camps and were on the order of 1 to 3 days earlier per decade.

Posted on Friday, Aug 04, 2017 by Arctic LCC Staff