Understanding and predicting population responses to climate change is important because the world’s climate will continue to change throughout the 21st century and beyond. To help guide conservation strategies and policy decisions in the face of climate change, reliable assessments of population extinction risks are urgently needed. The Black-Browed Albatross is considered Near Threatened by the International Union for Conservation of Nature due to recent drastic reductions in its population size. This project will advance our understanding of the mechanisms by which climate affects the life history and populations of Black-Browed Albatross to improve prediction of extinction risks under future climate change.
Specifically, we seek to understand the effect of climate on life history traits (foraging behaviors, body conditions and demographic traits), and the effects of these traits on populations. New demographic models will provide the link between foraging behavior and the physical environment, and evaluate the persistence of this population in the face of climate change.
This project is funded by the NSF- Antarctic Sciences Division.
PIs: Stephanie Jenouvrier and Hal Caswell
Post-doc: Marine Desprez
Guest students: Solène Sacre, who studied foraging behaviors over winter and their responses to climate (see Fig. 1) and Fiona McLean, an undergraduate science illustrator, who achieved a video related to the project.
Collaborators: Henri Weimerskirch, Christophe Barbraud and Karine Delord