IMPACTS OF CLIMATE CHANGE ON SMALL-RANGED AMPHIBIANS OF THE NORTHERN ATLANTIC FOREST
Keywords:anurans, ecological niche modelling, Euclidean distance, geographic distribution, global warming
Climate change is shifting species distribution all around the world. Amphibians are particularly vulnerable to these environmental changes, as they are highly sensitive to fluctuations in rainfall and temperature. While previous studies have shown that climate change may increase amphibian species extinctions worldwide, few have tested how these changes may impact small-ranged species. Here, we use simple Euclidean distance methods to evaluate how changes in climatic conditions predicted for 2050 and 2070 may impact ten small-ranged amphibians of Northern Atlantic Forest in Brazil. Specifically, we focused on changes in temperature and precipitation regimes during the breeding season of all target species. Our results indicate that future climatic conditions will be less favorable for the evaluated species. Environmental conditions similar to the ones currently experienced by the species may shift to southwestern regions. Likewise, we expect favorable climatic conditions to move in altitude, but without a common trend among species. In spite of these impacts, the most favorable climatic conditions for each species will keep the same connectivity patterns as observed in the present. Taken together, these findings suggest that small-ranged amphibians of the Northern Atlantic Forest will be negatively affected by climate change, mainly by the reduction and shifts of suitable climatic conditions. Finally, our results also indicate that actions to decrease greenhouse gas emissions would reduce the impact on these small-ranged species.