UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Predicting Future Seed Sourcing of Platycladus orientalis (L.) for Future Climates Using Climate Niche Models Hu, Xian-Ge; Wang, Tongli; Liu, Si-Si; Jiao, Si-Qian; Jia, Kai-Hua; Zhou, Shan-Shan; Jin, Yuqing; Li, Yue; El-Kassaby, Yousry A.; Mao, Jian-Feng


Climate niche modeling has been widely used to assess the impact of climate change on forest trees at the species level. However, geographically divergent tree populations are expected to respond differently to climate change. Considering intraspecific local adaptation in modeling species responses to climate change will thus improve the credibility and usefulness of climate niche models, particularly for genetic resources management. In this study, we used five Platycladus orientalis (L.) seed zones (Northwestern; Northern; Central; Southern; and Subtropical) covering the entire species range in China. A climate niche model was developed and used to project the suitable climatic conditions for each of the five seed zones for current and various future climate scenarios (Representative Concentration Pathways: RCP2.6, RCP4.5, RCP6.0, and RCP8.5). Our results indicated that the Subtropical seed zone would show consistent reduction for all climate change scenarios. The remaining seed zones, however, would experience various degrees of expansion in suitable habitat relative to their current geographic distributions. Most of the seed zones would gain suitable habitats at their northern distribution margins and higher latitudes. Thus, we recommend adjusting the current forest management strategies to mitigate the negative impacts of climate change.

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