The impact of global warming has become obvious in high latitude regions, including Alaska, Siberia and the Arctic, where melting ice and softening tundra are causing profound changes. But, contrary to popular belief, the most serious impact in the next century likely will be in the tropics, says a group of researchers headed by a University of Washington ecologist.
Scientists have noted warming at higher latitudes that already appears to be causing some flowers to bloom earlier than usual and seems to be altering some wildlife migration and hibernation patterns.
"You see this and you think the higher latitudes are really being hammered by climate change. We are arguing that this might not be true," said Joshua Tewksbury, a UW assistant professor of biology. "To predict the impact of climate change, we need to know the amount of change and how organisms are able to tolerate that change. Previous research has focused on change alone and ignored tolerance."
Vince Stricherz | EurekAlert!
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