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Access Type

Open Access Thesis

Document Type


Degree Program

Wildlife & Fisheries Conservation

Degree Type

Master of Science (M.S.)

Year Degree Awarded


Month Degree Awarded



To account for the effects of climate change, management plans in the northeast need to incorporate climate adaptation. Conserving climate change refugia is one adaptation strategy. Climate change refugia are areas buffered by climate change that enable the persistence of valued physical, ecological, and cultural resources; preserving these areas could be a potential adaptation strategy. Using a translational ecology approach where researchers and managers from the National Park Service, US Geological Survey, the University of Massachusetts, and elsewhere worked together, we focused on identifying refugia for tree, herbaceous plant, mammal, and bird species in order to prioritize them for conservation action. Results predict shifts in distribution of habitats and species due to climate change, identifying areas to prioritize for invasive species treatment and other management actions. This study highlights priorities for future monitoring and data analysis, providing a model that can be replicated in other regions and motivate future research.


First Advisor

Toni Lyn Morelli

Second Advisor

Meghan MacLean

Third Advisor

Aaron Weed