Forest ThreatNet

Volume 8, Issue 3 - July/August 2015

Western Threat Center Highlights

How are Changing Shorelines Affecting Subsistence Resources?

A goose tongue plantClimatic, tectonic, and human-related impacts are altering Alaskan shorelines and the associated distribution of food sources and habitats important to Native communities. The Western Threat Center is supporting a study of current and future shoreline geomorphic-biotic relationships in Southeast Alaska that could reveal potential impacts to patterns of traditional gathering of these subsistence resources. Pacific Northwest Research Station scientists Linda Kruger and Adelaide Johnson and partners are using the NOAA ShoreZone database, measures of shoreline change, and local observations and knowledge from six rural communities to develop a vulnerability assessment strategy. They will also summarize predicted coastal change and potential threats to near-shore marine species including blue mussel, green algae, eel grass, red algae, and bull kelp, as well as other intratidal and intertidal species groups. Results will provide guidance for management and research agencies to improve research and services for diverse resource users.

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Goose tongue leaves are a shoreline food source. Photo by Linda Kruger, USDA Forest Service.


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