Northwest Fisheries Science Center

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Document Type: Journal Article
Center: NWFSC
Document ID: 7486
Title: Envisioning, quantifying, and managing thermal regimes on river networks
Author: E. Ashley Steel, T. J. Beechie, C. E. Torgersen, A. H. Fullerton
Publication Year: 2017
Journal: Bioscience
Volume: 67
Issue: 6
Pages: 506-522
Keywords: temperature,climate change,restoration

Water temperatures fluctuate in time and over space, creating diverse thermal regimes on river networks.  Temporal variability in these thermal landscapes has important biological and ecological consequences because of nonlinearities in physiological reactions; spatial diversity in thermal landscapes provides aquatic organisms with options to maximize growth and survival.  Yet, human activities including climate change threaten to alter dynamics of riverine thermal regimes.  New data and tools can identify particular facets of the thermal landscape that represent ecological and management concerns and that are linked to human actions. The emerging complexity of thermal landscapes demands innovations in communication; opens the door to exciting research opportunities on human impacts to and biological consequences of thermal variability; suggests improvements in monitoring programs to better capture empirical patterns; provides a framework for suites of actions to restore and protect the natural processes that drive thermal complexity; and indicates opportunities for better managing thermal landscapes.

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Theme: Habitats to Support Sustainable Fisheries and Recovered Populations
Foci: Characterize relationships between habitat and ecosystem processes, climate variation, and the viability of organisms.