Vegetation-­climate relationships using historical climate data from the 19th Century Forts & Observer Database, expanding species realized niches

I’m presenting this week’s CPEP seminar at the Center for Climatic Research, UW-Madison (1:00pm, AOSS room 1039, 1225 W. Dayton St., Madison, WI).  As before, I’ll post the slides once I get them done.  Much of the material will be similar to work I’ve presented at the IBS and in my Yi-Fu seminar, but I’ve been working hard with the 19th Century Forts database over the past little while, and doing some fun things with some AWOS data that I’ll hopefully have time to present.  As with all things paleo and historical, you really need to understand how the modern system works to begin to make inferences about the past that are meaningful.

Here is the talk abstract:

Historical data sets for both vegetation and climate exist, covering a time period prior to major land use conversion in the upper Midwestern United States.  We aim to improve information about species fundamental niches in climate space by extending gridded climate data products to the early 1800s so that they are coincident with early estimates of pre-settlement vegetation in the American Midwest.  Here I present work detailling the creation of the gridded data sets and their application to species distribution modelling to show the sensitivity of future suitability maps to added data from historical records.

UPDATE:  This presentation is similar enough to my Yi-Fu and IBS talks that I’m not going to put it up on figshare.


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Assistant scientist in the Department of Geography at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Studying paleoecology and the challenges of large data synthesis.

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