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The following schedule is subject to change (as of October 11, 2016). Please check back for updates. For more information about this meeting, go to: www.seafwa.org/conferences/2016
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Tuesday, October 18 • 1:00pm - 1:20pm
S4. Resilience in the face of changing environmental conditions: Vertical adjustment and horizontal migration in tidal marshes

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AUTHORS: Julia Cherry, University of Alabama

ABSTRACT: Tidal marsh resilience to sea-level rise and climate change depends on maintaining surface elevations relative to mean sea level or migrating upslope when rates of vertical adjustment are insufficient. The biophysical mechanisms regulating the capacity for vertical adjustment or horizontal migration are influenced by simultaneously changing external forcing factors, including rising concentrations of atmospheric CO2, changes in the depth or duration of flooding, alterations in sediment or freshwater delivery, nutrient enrichment, and shifts in disturbance regimes. To promote marsh resilience to these changing environmental factors, it is important to understand the interactive effects that these changes have on the biophysical processes regulating surface elevation and marsh migration. Through a combination of surface elevation change measurements and field and greenhouse experiments, I have examined some of the critical biophysical processes governing marsh responses to environmental change. Here, I will highlight some of the results of these studies, including the ways in which CO2, sea-level rise, disturbances, and/or nutrient enrichment can affect biological feedbacks to marsh surface elevations, as well as the ways in which these factors can affect the ability of marshes to transgress upslope. Collectively, the results of these efforts demonstrate that species-specific responses to changing conditions can drive marsh ecosystem responses, and they underscore the importance of examining multi-factor interactions on processes regulating marsh persistence in the landscape. Thus, the results of this research can inform management and conservation strategies aimed at improving tidal marsh resilience to sea-level rise and other environmental changes.

Tuesday October 18, 2016 1:00pm - 1:20pm
Louisiana Room

Attendees (5)