Direct and Indirect Effects of Climate Change in Coastal Wetlands: Will Climate Change Influence Wetlands by Affecting Plant Invasion?

Article


Birnbaum, Christina, Waryszak, Pawel and Farrer, Emily C.. 2021. "Direct and Indirect Effects of Climate Change in Coastal Wetlands: Will Climate Change Influence Wetlands by Affecting Plant Invasion? " Wetlands: the journal of the Society of Wetland Scientists. 41 (5). https://doi.org/10.1007/s13157-021-01456-z
Article Title

Direct and Indirect Effects of Climate Change in Coastal Wetlands: Will Climate Change Influence Wetlands by Affecting Plant Invasion?

ERA Journal ID5871
Article CategoryArticle
AuthorsBirnbaum, Christina, Waryszak, Pawel and Farrer, Emily C.
Journal TitleWetlands: the journal of the Society of Wetland Scientists
Journal Citation41 (5)
Article Number59
Number of Pages11
YearJun 2021
PublisherSpringer
Place of PublicationNetherlands
ISSN0277-5212
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1007/s13157-021-01456-z
Web Address (URL)https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s13157-021-01456-z
Abstract

Introduced species and climate change can have direct impacts on wetland communities, but they can also produce indirect effects such that climate change (i.e., effects of flooding and salinity) can affect native plants by exacerbating or reducing invasion. We assessed the direct and indirect effects of flooding, salinity, and introduced species on wetland communities across a salinity gradient by analyzing existing monitoring data from over 390 Coastwide Reference and Monitoring Sites (CRMS) using path analysis. As expected, we found that introduced species cover and richness was highest in fresh marshes and decreased across the salinity gradient. In fresh marshes, introduced cover and salinity separately negatively affected native cover and richness, but there were no indirect effects. In intermediate marshes, introduced cover and salinity reduced native cover and richness, and indirect effects were weakly positive because salinity negatively affected introduced cover. In brackish and saline marshes increasing salinity and flooding reduced native cover and richness. Our results suggest that climate change will negatively affect all wetland plant communities, and invasion will negatively affect fresher wetlands; however, climate change will not exacerbate invasions in wetlands and could reduce introduced species effects.

KeywordsCoastal wetlands; Plant communities; Sea level rise; Introduced plants; Salinity
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020410199. Climate change impacts and adaptation not elsewhere classified
410202. Biosecurity science and invasive species ecology
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Byline AffiliationsTulane University, United States
Deakin University
Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT)
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