New animated map shows the future of animal migration in motion

Where will climate change force animals to move, and how will they get there?

8_29_16_Brian_AllUSMigration

This new map from The Nature Conservancy shows not only how birds, amphibians, and mammals will track suitable habitats as they shift, but does so in visually stunning animation across all of North and South America.  Using flow models from circuit theory and a foundation in previously graphed wind maps, Dan Majka from TNC created a map in motion that highlights the spatial patterns of the future.

Based on coarse 50 km data, the map reveals general key corridors across both continents, such as the Appalachian Mountains of the eastern U.S. and the northeastern corner of Canada.  Many species in the Amazon will shift towards the higher elevations of Ecuador, and the tips of both continents can expect new migrations.  The map creates a simple but powerful view of how climate change will impact the globe, and highlights how critical corridors will be to maintaining species diversity as the climate changes.

Resources

View the full map in high resolution at The Nature Conservancy

Predicting the future movement routes for 3000 species (July 2013)

Corridors as an effective means to achieve climate connectivity (June 2016)

2017-03-19T23:37:26+00:00 August 30th, 2016|

About the Author:

Heather Cayton
Heather Cayton is the Managing Director of ConservationCorridor.org and a Research Technician at North Carolina State University. She received her B.S. from the University of Virginia and her M.S. from Virginia Tech, and has spent the past eight years studying corridors and rare butterflies in North Carolina.