Environmental regimes are shifting with accelerating climate change, putting at risk species whose ecology has been shaped by pre-industrial climates. Both species physiology and habitat associations are central to many predictions of future climate risk. Here I focus on the role of water, both in terms of ectotherm physiology through water loss, and as habitat essential for many amphibian life histories. In Chapter 1, I explore whether amphibian and squamate thermal safety margins are mediated by species' propensity for water loss. In Chapter 2, I combine estimates of species' habitat use and the hydrologic suitability of wetland habitats to predict how drying from climate change may drive future habitat loss in alpine regions of the US Pacific Northwest. This work indicates that water loss has been critical to shaping species' physiology, and that water availability as critical habitat is central to species' persistence across alpine landscapes in the future.
Copyright is held by the author(s).
This thesis may be printed or downloaded for non-commercial research and scholarly purposes.
Supervisor or Senior Supervisor
Thesis advisor: Palen, Wendy
Member of collection