Document Type


Original Publication Date


Journal/Book/Conference Title

VCU Rice Rivers Center Research Symposium

Date of Submission

May 2017


Understanding a species’ range, and how it may change over time, allows researchers to develop more robust species management plans and to identify vital habitat for conservation planning. For migratory bird species, different habitats are utilized during different times of year. While a neotropical migratory species’ breeding grounds may be adequate, its wintering ground or various stopover areas may be under threat. In what is known as a carry over effect, the degradation of wintering grounds can lead to poor quality individuals in the breeding range (Rockwell et al., 2012), thus reduced fitness.

The tropics are predicted to experience changes in temperature and precipitation as a result of climate change (Neelin et al., 2006). These changes may result in the decline of food resources required by migratory species wintering in the tropics. Resource rich mangrove ecosystems and riparian habitats are highly threatened by climate-induced sea level rise and storm surges (Şekercioğlu et al., 2012). The Prothonotary warbler (Protonotaria citrea) is a habitat specialist that relies on the endangered mangrove forests of coastal wetlands. The effects of climate change may cause species with narrow environmental niches, such as the Prothonotary warbler, to shift their ranges to less suitable habitat (Şekercioğlu et al., 2008).


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VCU Rice Rivers Center Research Symposium

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Ornithology Commons