The effects on population dynamical key-processes of a changing climate in arctic ecosystems

The present project aims at understanding and predicting how variations and changes in climate can affect key-processes that operate both on population dynamical and ecosystem level. More specifically, we will use long-term monitoring data on population dynamics and population specific demography to parameterize stochastic population models. The models will provide the basis for estimating key factors related to population changes, such as the relative contribution of deterministic and stochastic factors, the size and scale of environmental noise, and the effects of trophic interactions. The effects of extreme weather/climate events on population dynamics will be quantified with respect to different trophic levels and future impact. Dynamical downscaled climate scenarios for Svalbard will be used to examine how future population dynamics will be affected by climate change. Finally, the project will quantify uncertainties in sampling and models for appropriate data sets which will facilitate an evaluation of the ongoing monitoring in Arctic ecosystems. By using information from different trophic levels in both marine and terrestrial ecosystem components on Svalbard and in the Barents Sea we believe the project will result in new and vital knowledge of the biological effects of a changing climate in Arctic areas.