Product: 8408e6b2-4831-4751-bb29-61d19bc80322

Metadata Format
Product Title
Watershed geomorphology and snowmelt control stream thermal sensitivity to air temperature.
Description
Lisi, P. J., D. E. Schindler, T. J. Cline, M. D. Scheuerell, and P. B. Walsh. 2015. Watershed geomorphology and snowmelt control stream thermal sensitivity to air temperature. Geophysical Research Letters., 42, 3380–3388. Lisi et al. GRL2015.pdf
Project ID
b238ca73-a2bd-4824-9943-779ea26d8db1
Project Title
Watershed control of hydrologic sources and thermal conditions in SW Alaska streams: a framework for forecasting effects of changing climate
Point of Contact(s)
LCC Network Data Steward
LCC Network Data Manager
lccdatasteward@fws.gov
Western Alaska Landscape Conservation Cooperative
1011 E. Tudor Road MS 281
Anchorage, Alaska 99503
Western Alaska Landscape Conservation Cooperative
1011 E. Tudor Road MS 281
Anchorage, Alaska 99503

Product Abstract

How local geomorphic and hydrologic features mediate the sensitivity of stream thermal regimes to variation in climatic conditions remains a critical uncertainty in understanding aquatic ecosystem responses to climate change.We used stable isotopes of hydrogen and oxygen to estimate contributions of snow and rainfall to 80 boreal streams and show that differences in snow contribution are controlled by watershed topography. Time series analysis of streamthermal regimes revealed that streams in rain-dominated, low-elevation watersheds were 5–8 times more sensitive to variation in summer air temperature compared to streams draining steeper topography whose flows were dominated by snowmelt. This effect wasmore pronounced across the landscape in early summer and less distinct in late summer. Thus, the impact of climatewarming on freshwater thermal regimes will be spatially heterogeneous across river basins as controlled by geomorphic features. However, thermal heterogeneity may be lost with reduced snowpack and increased ratios of rain to snow in stream discharge.

Purpose:

Product Links

Product Keywords

  • ISO 19115 Topic Category (isoTopicCategory):
    • biota,
    • climatologyMeteorologyAtmosphere,
    • environment,
    • geoscientificInformation,
    • inlandWaters
  • Global Change Master Directory (GCMD) Science Keywords (theme):
    • SNOW/ICE,
    • SNOW,
    • SALMONS/TROUTS,
    • SNOW/ICE CHEMISTRY,
    • STREAM,
    • LAKES,
    • PRECIPITATION,
    • PRECIPITATION AMOUNT
  • End User Types - Landscape Conservation Cooperatives (LCC End User Type):
    • State agencies,
    • Federal resource managers,
    • Academics & scientific researchers

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