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Sample records for boreal forest ecosystems

  1. Hydrologic Modeling of Boreal Forest Ecosystems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Haddeland, I.; Lettenmaier, D. P.

    1995-01-01

    This study focused on the hydrologic response, including vegetation water use, of two test regions within the Boreal-Ecosystem-Atmosphere Study (BOREAS) region in the Canadian boreal forest, one north of Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, and the other near Thompson, Manitoba. Fluxes of moisture and heat were studied using a spatially distributed hydrology soil-vegetation-model (DHSVM).

  2. Impacts of forestry on boreal forests: An ecosystem services perspective.

    PubMed

    Pohjanmies, Tähti; Triviño, María; Le Tortorec, Eric; Mazziotta, Adriano; Snäll, Tord; Mönkkönen, Mikko

    2017-04-22

    Forests are widely recognized as major providers of ecosystem services, including timber, other forest products, recreation, regulation of water, soil and air quality, and climate change mitigation. Extensive tracts of boreal forests are actively managed for timber production, but actions aimed at increasing timber yields also affect other forest functions and services. Here, we present an overview of the environmental impacts of forest management from the perspective of ecosystem services. We show how prevailing forestry practices may have substantial but diverse effects on the various ecosystem services provided by boreal forests. Several aspects of these processes remain poorly known and warrant a greater role in future studies, including the role of community structure. Conflicts among different interests related to boreal forests are most likely to occur, but the concept of ecosystem services may provide a useful framework for identifying and resolving these conflicts.

  3. Methane Emissions From Boreal and Tropical Forest Ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Williams, J.; Sinha, V.; Crutzen, P.; Lelieveld, J.

    2006-12-01

    Methane is a climatologically important greenhouse gas and plays a key role in regulating water vapour in the stratosphere and hydroxyl radicals in the troposphere. Recent findings that vegetation emits methane have stimulated efforts to ascertain the impact of this source on the global budget of this trace gas. In this work, we present the results of high frequency (1 minute) methane measurements conducted in the boreal forests of Finland and the tropical forests of Suriname, in April-May, 2005 and October 2005 respectively. The measurements were performed using a gas chromatograph - flame ionization detector (GC-FID). The average of the median mixing ratios during a typical diel cycle were 1.83 μmol mol-1 and 1.74 μmol mol-1 for the boreal forest ecosystem and tropical forest ecosystem respectively, with remarkable similarity in the time series of both the boreal and tropical diel profiles. Night time methane emission flux of the boreal forest ecosystem, calculated from the increase of methane during the night and measured nocturnal boundary layer heights yields a flux of 3.62 x 1011 molecules cm-2 s-1.These results highlight the importance of the boreal and tropical forest ecosystems for the global budget of methane. We also discuss our results in the context of recent work reporting high methane mixing ratios over tropical forests using space borne near infra red spectroscopy measurements.

  4. Ecosystem feedbacks and nitrogen fixation in boreal forests.

    PubMed

    DeLuca, Thomas H; Zackrisson, Olle; Gundale, Michael J; Nilsson, Marie-Charlotte

    2008-05-30

    Biological feedback mechanisms regulate fundamental ecosystem processes and potentially regulate ecosystem productivity. To date, no studies have documented the down-regulation of terrestrial nitrogen (N) fixation via an ecosystem-level feedback mechanism. Herein, we demonstrate such a feedback in boreal forests. Rapid cycling of N in early secondary succession forests yielded greater throughfall N deposition, which in turn decreased N fixation by cyanobacterial associates in feather moss carpets that reside on the forest floor. The forest canopy exerts a tight control on biotic N input at a period of high productivity.

  5. Storm Effects on Net Ecosystem Productivity in Boreal Forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vestin, Patrik; Grelle, Achim; Lagergren, Fredrik; Hellström, Margareta; Langvall, Ola; Lindroth, Anders

    2010-05-01

    Regional carbon budgets are to some extent determined by disturbance in ecosystems. Disturbance is believed to be partly responsible for the large inter-annual variability of the terrestrial carbon balance. When neglecting anthropogenic disturbance, forest fires have been considered the most important kind of disturbance. However, also insect outbreaks and wind-throw may be major factors in regional carbon budgets. The effects of wind-throw on CO2 fluxes in boreal forests are not well known due to lack of data. Principally, the reduced carbon sequestration capacity, increased substrate availability and severe soil perturbation following wind-throw are expected to result in increased CO2 fluxes from the forest to the atmosphere. In January 2005, the storm Gudrun hit Sweden, which resulted in approx. 66 × 106m3storm-felled stem wood distributed over an area of approx. 272 000 ha. Eddy covariance flux measurements started at storm-felled areas in Asa and Toftaholm in central Sweden during summer 2005. Data from the first months suggests increased CO2 fluxes by a factor of 2.5-10, as compared to normal silviculture (clear-cutting). An important question is how long such enhanced CO2 fluxes persist. The BIOME-BGC model will be calibrated against measured CO2 fluxes from both sites for 2005 through 2009. Modeled data will be used to fill gaps in the data sets and annual carbon balances will be calculated. Data from Asa and Toftaholm will be presented at the conference.

  6. The role of mosses in ecosystem succession and function in Alaska's boreal forest

    Treesearch

    Merritt R. Turetsky; Michelle C. Mack; Teresa N. Hollingsworth; Jennifer W. Harden

    2010-01-01

    Shifts in moss communities may affect the resilience of boreal ecosystems to a changing climate because of the role of moss species in regulating soil climate and biogeochemical cycling. Here, we use long-term data analysis and literature synthesis to examine the role of moss in ecosystem succession, productivity, and decomposition. In Alaskan forests, moss abundance...

  7. Carbonaceous aerosols from prescribed burning of a boreal forest ecosystem

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mazurek, Monica A.; Cofer, Wesley R., III; Levine, Joel S.

    1991-01-01

    During the boreal forest burn studied, the ambient concentrations for the particle carbon smoke aerosol are highest for the full-fire burn conditions and vary significantly throughout the burn. Collection strategies must accordingly define ranges in the smoke aerosol concentrations produced. While the highest elemental C concentrations are observed during full-fire conditions, the great majority of smoke aerosol particles are in the form of organic C particles irrespective of fire temperature. The formation of organic C light-scattering particles was a significant process in the burn studied.

  8. Methane emissions from boreal and tropical forest ecosystems derived from in-situ measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sinha, V.; Williams, J.; Crutzen, P. J.; Lelieveld, J.

    2007-09-01

    Methane is a climatologically important greenhouse gas, which plays a key role in regulating water vapour in the stratosphere and hydroxyl radicals in the troposphere. Recent findings that vegetation emits methane have stimulated efforts to ascertain the impact of this source on the global budget. In this work, we present the results of high frequency (ca. 1 min-1) methane measurements conducted in the boreal forests of Finland and the tropical forests of Suriname, in April-May, 2005 and October 2005 respectively. The measurements were performed using a gas chromatograph - flame ionization detector (GC-FID). The average of the median mixing ratios during a typical diel cycle were 1.83 μmol mol-1 and 1.74 μmol mol-1 for the boreal forest ecosystem and tropical forest ecosystem respectively, with remarkable similarity in the time series of both the boreal and tropical diel profiles. Night time methane emission flux of the boreal forest ecosystem, calculated from the increase of methane during the night and measured nocturnal boundary layer heights yields a flux of (3.62±0.87)×1011 molecules cm-2 s-1(or 45.5±11 Tg CH4 yr-1 for global boreal forest area). This is a source contribution of circa 8% of the global methane budget. These results highlight the importance of the boreal and tropical forest ecosystems for the global budget of methane. The results are also discussed in the context of recent work reporting high methane mixing ratios over tropical forests using space borne near infra-red spectroscopy measurements.

  9. Effects of disturbance and climate change on ecosystem performance in the Yukon River Basin boreal forest

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wylie, Bruce K.; Rigge, Matthew B.; Brisco, Brian; Mrnaghan, Kevin; Rover, Jennifer R.; Long, Jordan

    2014-01-01

    A warming climate influences boreal forest productivity, dynamics, and disturbance regimes. We used ecosystem models and 250 m satellite Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) data averaged over the growing season (GSN) to model current, and estimate future, ecosystem performance. We modeled Expected Ecosystem Performance (EEP), or anticipated productivity, in undisturbed stands over the 2000–2008 period from a variety of abiotic data sources, using a rule-based piecewise regression tree. The EEP model was applied to a future climate ensemble A1B projection to quantify expected changes to mature boreal forest performance. Ecosystem Performance Anomalies (EPA), were identified as the residuals of the EEP and GSN relationship and represent performance departures from expected performance conditions. These performance data were used to monitor successional events following fire. Results suggested that maximum EPA occurs 30–40 years following fire, and deciduous stands generally have higher EPA than coniferous stands. Mean undisturbed EEP is projected to increase 5.6% by 2040 and 8.7% by 2070, suggesting an increased deciduous component in boreal forests. Our results contribute to the understanding of boreal forest successional dynamics and its response to climate change. This information enables informed decisions to prepare for, and adapt to, climate change in the Yukon River Basin forest.

  10. BOREAS (Boreal Ecosystem-Atmosphere Study): Global change and biosphere-atmosphere interactions in the boreal forest

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sellers, Piers J.

    1991-01-01

    The Boreal Ecosystems Atmosphere Study (BOREAS) is a cooperative field and analysis project involving elements of land surface climatology, tropospheric chemistry, and terrestrial ecology. The goal of the study is to understand the interactions between the boreal forest biome and the atmosphere in order to clarify their roles in global change. The study will be centered on two 20 by 20 km sites within the North American boreal forest region, located near the northern and southern limits of the biome. Studies based at these sites will be used to explore the roles of various environmental factors in controlling the extent and character of the biome. The sites will be the subject of surface, airborne, and satellite based observations which aim to improve understanding of the biological and physical processes and states which govern the exchanges of energy, water, carbon, and trace gases between boreal forest ecosystems and the atmosphere. Particular reference will be made to those processes and states that may be sensitive to global change. The study also aims to develop the use of remote sensing techniques to transfer understanding of the above process from local scales out to regional scales. The BOREAS project is being planned for 1992-1996, with a major field effort in 1994.

  11. BOREAS (Boreal Ecosystem-Atmosphere Study): Global change and biosphere-atmosphere interactions in the boreal forest

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sellers, Piers J.

    1991-01-01

    The Boreal Ecosystems Atmosphere Study (BOREAS) is a cooperative field and analysis project involving elements of land surface climatology, tropospheric chemistry, and terrestrial ecology. The goal of the study is to understand the interactions between the boreal forest biome and the atmosphere in order to clarify their roles in global change. The study will be centered on two 20 by 20 km sites within the North American boreal forest region, located near the northern and southern limits of the biome. Studies based at these sites will be used to explore the roles of various environmental factors in controlling the extent and character of the biome. The sites will be the subject of surface, airborne, and satellite based observations which aim to improve understanding of the biological and physical processes and states which govern the exchanges of energy, water, carbon, and trace gases between boreal forest ecosystems and the atmosphere. Particular reference will be made to those processes and states that may be sensitive to global change. The study also aims to develop the use of remote sensing techniques to transfer understanding of the above process from local scales out to regional scales. The BOREAS project is being planned for 1992-1996, with a major field effort in 1994.

  12. Climate change implications of shifting forest management strategy in a boreal forest ecosystem of Norway.

    PubMed

    Bright, Ryan M; Antón-Fernández, Clara; Astrup, Rasmus; Cherubini, Francesco; Kvalevåg, Maria; Strømman, Anders H

    2014-02-01

    Empirical models alongside remotely sensed and station measured meteorological observations are employed to investigate both the local and global direct climate change impacts of alternative forest management strategies within a boreal ecosystem of eastern Norway. Stand-level analysis is firstly executed to attribute differences in daily, seasonal, and annual mean surface temperatures to differences in surface intrinsic biophysical properties across conifer, deciduous, and clear-cut sites. Relative to a conifer site, a slight local cooling of −0.13 °C at a deciduous site and −0.25 °C at a clear-cut site were observed over a 6-year period, which were mostly attributed to a higher albedo throughout the year. When monthly mean albedo trajectories over the entire managed forest landscape were taken into consideration, we found that strategies promoting natural regeneration of coniferous sites with native deciduous species led to substantial global direct climate cooling benefits relative to those maintaining current silviculture regimes – despite predicted long-term regional warming feedbacks and a reduced albedo in spring and autumn months. The magnitude and duration of the cooling benefit depended largely on whether management strategies jointly promoted an enhanced material supply over business-as-usual levels. Expressed in terms of an equivalent CO2 emission pulse at the start of the simulation, the net climate response at the end of the 21st century spanned −8 to −159 Tg-CO2-eq., depending on whether near-term harvest levels increased or followed current trends, respectively. This magnitude equates to approximately −20 to −300% of Norway's annual domestic (production) emission impact. Our analysis supports the assertion that a carbon-only focus in the design and implementation of forest management policy in boreal and other climatically similar regions can be counterproductive – and at best – suboptimal if boreal forests are to be used as a

  13. Comparison of boreal ecosystem model sensitivity to variability in climate and forest site parameters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Potter, Christopher S.; Wang, Shusen; Nikolov, Ned T.; McGuire, A. David; Liu, Jane; King, Anthony W.; Kimball, John S.; Grant, Robert F.; Frolking, Steven E.; Clein, Joy S.; Chen, Jing M.; Amthor, Jeffrey S.

    2001-12-01

    Ecosystem models are useful tools for evaluating environmental controls on carbon and water cycles under past or future conditions. In this paper we compare annual carbon and water fluxes from nine boreal spruce forest ecosystem models in a series of sensitivity simulations. For each comparison, a single climate driver or forest site parameter was altered in a separate sensitivity run. Driver and parameter changes were prescribed principally to be large enough to identify and isolate any major differences in model responses, while also remaining within the range of variability that the boreal forest biome may be exposed to over a time period of several decades. The models simulated plant production, autotrophic and heterotrophic respiration, and evapotranspiration (ET) for a black spruce site in the boreal forest of central Canada (56°N). Results revealed that there were common model responses in gross primary production, plant respiration, and ET fluxes to prescribed changes in air temperature or surface irradiance and to decreased precipitation amounts. The models were also similar in their responses to variations in canopy leaf area, leaf nitrogen content, and surface organic layer thickness. The models had different sensitivities to certain parameters, namely the net primary production response to increased CO2 levels, and the response of soil microbial respiration to precipitation inputs and soil wetness. These differences can be explained by the type (or absence) of photosynthesis-CO2 response curves in the models and by response algorithms of litter and humus decomposition to drying effects in organic soils of the boreal spruce ecosystem. Differences in the couplings of photosynthesis and soil respiration to nitrogen availability may also explain divergent model responses. Sensitivity comparisons imply that past conditions of the ecosystem represented in the models' initial standing wood and soil carbon pools, including historical climate patterns and the

  14. Effects of a Severe Drought on a Boreal Forest Ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sevanto, S.; Launiainen, S.; Höltta, T.; Kolari, P.; Pumpanen, J.; Korhonen, J. F.; Duursma, R.; Vesala, T.; Nikinmaa, E.

    2008-12-01

    Water is seldom a limiting factor for plant activity in the boreal zone. Melting snow in the spring loads soil water reservoirs and during the short summertime the amount of precipitation usually is enough to prevent the ecosystems from drought. In Finland, for example, the three summer months (June, July and August) account for more than 30% of the annual precipitation (700 mm/year). Summer 2006 was exceptionally dry in Southern Finland. In June and July precipitation was < 40% of the long term average of this time, which resulted in limited soil water availability for the plants. We have carried out ecosystem-scale atmosphere-biosphere exchange measurements at the SMEAR II station in Hyytiälä, Southern Finland since year 1996. The station is surrounded by a homogenous Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) stand, which was sown after prescribed burning in 1962. The measurement set up includes an eddy-covariance system for measuring CO2, water vapor and sensible heat fluxes, soil water content measurements by the TDR-system, theta probes and equitensiometers, radiation measurements above and inside the canopy as well as automated chamber measurements for soil respiration and shoot-scale photosynthesis. We also measured sap flow in the trees using the Granier method and water tension inside the xylem using stem diameter variation measurements. The set-up of the sensors also allowed estimation of the variation in the stem hydraulic conductivity. Summer 2006 was the first time in the 11-year-data set, when soil water availability clearly reduced photosynthesis in the ecosystem scale. The drought also reduced respiration, but the reduction was not enough to keep the ecosystem from changing to a carbon source during the drought period. In normal conditions the ecosystem is a clear sink of carbon in summertime. In this study we compared the ecosystem responses of summer 2006 to the long term averages of our site and evaluated the conditions when the plants start reducing

  15. The role of forest floor and trees to the ecosystem scale methane budget of boreal forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pihlatie, Mari; Halmeenmäki, Elisa; Peltola, Olli; Haikarainen, Iikka; Heinonsalo, Jussi; Santalahti, Minna; Putkinen, Anuliina; Fritze, Hannu; Urban, Otmar; Machacova, Katerina

    2016-04-01

    Boreal forests are considered as a sink of atmospheric methane (CH4) due to the activity of CH4 oxidizing bacteria (methanotrophs) in the soil. This soil CH4 sink is especially strong for upland forest soils, whereas forests growing on organic soils may act as small sources due to the domination of CH4 production by methanogens in the anaerobic parts of the soil. The role of trees to the ecosystem-scale CH4 fluxes has until recently been neglected due to the perception that trees do not contribute to the CH4 exchange, and also due to difficulties in measuring the CH4 exchange from trees. Findings of aerobic CH4 formation in plants and emissions from tree-stems in temperate and tropical forests during the past decade demonstrate that our understanding of CH4 cycling in forest ecosystems is not complete. Especially the role of forest canopies still remain unresolved, and very little is known of CH4 fluxes from trees in boreal region. We measured the CH4 exchange of tree-stems and tree-canopies from pine (Pinus sylvestris), spruce (Picea abies) and birch (Betula pubescens, Betula pendula) trees growing in Southern Finland (SMEAR II station) on varying soil conditions, from upland mineral soils to paludified soil. We compared the CH4 fluxes from trees to forest-floor CH4 exchange, both measured by static chambers, and to CH4 fluxes measured above the forest canopy by a flux gradient technique. We link the CH4 fluxes from trees and forest floor to physiological activity of the trees, such as transpiration, sap-flow, CO2 net ecosystem exchange (NEE), soil properties such as temperature and moisture, and to the presence of CH4 producing methanogens and CH4 oxidizing methanotrophs in trees or soil. The above canopy CH4 flux measurements show that the whole forest ecosystem was a small source of CH4 over extended periods in the spring and summer 2012, 2014 and 2015. Throughout the 2013-2014 measurements, the forest floor was in total a net sink of CH4, with variation

  16. Modeling the effects of organic nitrogen uptake by plants on the carbon cycling of boreal forest and tundra ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Q.; Zhuang, Q.

    2013-12-01

    Boreal forest and tundra are the major ecosystems in the northern high latitudes in which a large amount of carbon is stored. These ecosystems are nitrogen-limited due to slow mineralization rate of the soil organic nitrogen. Recently, abundant field studies have found that organic nitrogen is another important nitrogen supply for boreal forest and tundra ecosystems. In this study, we incorporated a mechanism that allowed boreal plants to uptake small molecular amino acids into a process-based biogeochemical model, the Terrestrial Ecosystem Model (TEM), to evaluate the impact of organic nitrogen uptake on ecosystem carbon cycling. The new version of the model was evaluated for both boreal forest and tundra sites. We found that the modeled organic nitrogen uptake accounted for 36-87% of total nitrogen uptake by plants in tundra ecosystems and 26-50% for boreal forests, suggesting that tundra ecosystem might have more relied on the organic form of nitrogen than boreal forests. The simulated monthly gross ecosystem production (GPP) and net ecosystem production (NEP) tended to be larger with the new version of the model since the plant uptake of organic nitrogen alleviated the soil nitrogen limitation especially during the growing season. The sensitivity study indicated that the most important factors controlling the plant uptake of organic nitrogen was the soil amino acid diffusion coefficient (De) in our model, suggesting that the organic nitrogen uptake by plants is likely to be regulated by the edaphic characteristics of diffusion. The model uncertainty due to uncertain parameters associated with organic nitrogen uptake of the tundra ecosystem was larger than the boreal forest ecosystems. This study suggests that considering the organic nitrogen uptake by plants is important to carbon modeling of boreal forest and tundra ecosystems.

  17. The Importance of Winter for Controlling the Growing Season Net Ecosystem Exchange (NEE) of Boreal Forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oquist, M. G.; Peichl, M.; Ottosson Lofvenius, M.; Nilsson, M. B.

    2014-12-01

    It is becoming increasingly apparent that the winter season of high latitudes can be important for controlling a range of ecological and biogeochemical properties of northern ecosystems. Here we evaluate the importance of winter conditions on the carbon exchange between boreal forest systems and the atmosphere during the following growing season in order to elucidate any influence of inter-seasonal "memory" effects on carbon exchange properties of boreal forest ecosystems. The study is based on 5 years of continuous eddy covariance measurements at two ca 50 year old Norway spruce stands situated in mid- and northern Sweden, respectively (a total of 10 site years). The growing season net ecosystem exchange (NEE) ranged from -530 to -60 g C m-2 (negative values indicates carbon sinks). Environmental conditions during the growing season (e.g. temperature, radiation, length) only weakly explained the year-to-year variability in NEE. In contrast, up to 75% of the variation could be explained by the severity of the preceding winter (defined as the lowest observed average weekly air temperature) using an exponential response function. After warm winters the carbon sink properties were high as compared to those observed after cold winters. The winter conditions markedly affected the systems potential for carbon uptake in early summer. This presentation will address the potential mechanisms underpinning the observed correlations linking growing season carbon exchange to the conditions of the preceding winter. The influence of winter on the partitioned carbon fluxes of ecosystem respiration and gross primary productivity, respectively, will also be addressed. The results strongly indicate that controls on boreal forest carbon exchange can transcend across seasons. Understanding these mechanisms are integral for understanding the environmental drivers of atmospheric carbon exchange, allowing for accurate predictions of boreal forest NEE under both present and future climates.

  18. Patterns of total ecosystem carbon storage with changes in soil temperature in boreal black spruce forests

    Treesearch

    E.S. Kane; J.G. Vogel

    2009-01-01

    To understand how carbon (C) pools in boreal ecosystems may change with warming, we measured above- and belowground C pools and C increment along a soil temperature gradient across 16 mature upland black spruce (Picea mariana Mill. [B•S.P]) forests in interior Alaska. Total spruce C stocks (stand and root C) increased from 1.3 to 8.5 kg C m

  19. Interactive effects between N addition and disturbance on boreal forest ecosystem structure and function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nordin, Annika; Strengbom, Joachim; From, Fredrik

    2014-05-01

    In management of boreal forests, nitrogen (N) enrichment from atmospheric deposition or from forest fertilization can appear in combination with land-use related disturbances, i.e. tree harvesting by clear-felling. Long-term interactive effects between N enrichment and disturbance on boreal forest ecosystem structure and function are, however, poorly known. We investigated effects of N enrichment by forest fertilization done > 25 years ago on forest understory species composition in old-growth (undisturbed) forests, and in forests clear-felled 10 years ago (disturbed). In clear-felled forests we also investigated effects of the previous N addition on growth of tree saplings. The results show that the N enrichment effect on the understory species composition was strongly dependent on the disturbance caused by clear-felling. In undisturbed forests, there were small or no effects on understory species composition from N addition. In contrast, effects were large in forests first exposed to N addition and subsequently disturbed by clear-felling. Effects of N addition differed among functional groups of plants. Abundance of graminoids increased (+232%) and abundance of dwarf shrubs decreased (-44%) following disturbance in N fertilized forests. For vascular plants, the two perturbations had contrasting effects on α-(within forests) and β-diversity (among forests): in disturbed forests, N addition reduced, or had no effect on α-diversity, while β-diversity increased. For bryophytes, negative effects of disturbance on α-diversity were smaller in N fertilized forests than in forests not fertilized, while neither N addition nor disturbance had any effects on β-diversity. Moreover, sapling growth in forests clear-felled 10 years ago was significantly higher in previously N fertilized forests than in forests not fertilized. Our study show that effects of N addition on plant communities may appear small, short-lived, or even absent until exposed to a disturbance. This

  20. Vulnerability to climate-induced changes in ecosystem services of boreal forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holmberg, Maria; Rankinen, Katri; Aalto, Tuula; Akujärvi, Anu; Nadir Arslan, Ali; Liski, Jari; Markkanen, Tiina; Mäkelä, Annikki; Peltoniemi, Mikko

    2016-04-01

    Boreal forests provide an array of ecosystem services. They regulate climate, and carbon, water and nutrient fluxes, and provide renewable raw material, food, and recreational possibilities. Rapid climate warming is projected for the boreal zone, and has already been observed in Finland, which sets these services at risk. MONIMET (LIFE12 ENV/FI/000409, 2.9.2013 - 1.9.2017) is a project funded by EU Life programme about Climate Change Indicators and Vulnerability of Boreal Zone Applying Innovative Observation and Modeling Techniques. The coordinating beneficiary of the project is the Finnish Meteorological Institute. Associated beneficiaries are the Natural Resources Institute Finland, the Finnish Environment Institute and the University of Helsinki. In the MONIMET project, we use state-of-the-art models and new monitoring methods to investigate the impacts of a warming climate on the provision of ecosystem services of boreal forests. This poster presents results on carbon storage in soil and assessment of drought indices, as a preparation for assessing the vulnerability of society to climate-induced changes in ecosystem services. The risk of decreasing provision of ecosystem services depends on the sensitivity of the ecosystem as well as its exposure to climate stress. The vulnerability of society, in turn, depends on the risk of decreasing provision of a certain service in combination with society's demand for that service. In the next phase, we will look for solutions to challenges relating to the quantification of the demand for ecosystem services and differences in spatial extent and resolution of the information on future supply and demand.

  1. Declining plant nitrogen supply and carbon accumulation in ageing primary boreal forest ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Högberg, Mona N.; Yarwood, Stephanie A.; Trumbore, Susan; Högberg, Peter

    2016-04-01

    Boreal forest soils are commonly characterized by a low plant nitrogen (N) supply. A high tree below-ground allocation of carbon (C) to roots and soil microorganisms in response to the shortage of N may lead to high microbial immobilisation of N, thus aggravating the N limitation. We studied the N supply at a Swedish boreal forest ecosystem chronosequence created by new land rising out of the sea due to iso-static rebound. The youngest soils develop with meadows by the coast, followed by a zone of dinitrogen fixing alder trees, and primary boreal conifer forest on ground up to 560 years old. With increasing ecosystem age, the proportion of microbial C out of the total soil C pool from the youngest to the oldest coniferous ecosystem was constant (c. 1-1.5%), whereas immobilised N (microbial N out of total soil N) increased and approached the levels commonly observed in similar boreal coniferous forests (c. 6-7 %), whereas gross N mineralization declined. Simultaneously, plant foliar N % decreased and the natural abundance of N-15 in the soil increased. More specifically, the difference in N-15 between plant foliage and soil increased, which is related to greater retention of N-15 relative to N-14 by ectomycorrhizal fungi as N is taken up from the soil and some N is transferred to the plant host. In the conifer forest, where these changes were greatest, we found increased fungal biomass in the F- and H-horizons of the mor-layer, in which ectomycorrhizal fungi are known to dominate (the uppermost horizon with litter and moss is dominated by saprotrophic fungi). Hence, we propose that the decreasing N supply to the plants and the subsequent decline in plant production in ageing boreal forests is linked to high tree belowground C allocation to C limited ectomycorrhizal fungi (and other soil microorganisms), a strong sink for available soil N. Data on organic matter C-14 suggested that the largest input of recently fixed plant C occurred in the younger coniferous forest

  2. Disturbance-mediated heterogeneity drives pollinator diversity in boreal managed forest ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez, Antonio; Kouki, Jari

    2017-03-01

    Intensive forest management, together with fire suppression, have decreased structural complexity and altered dynamics of boreal forests profoundly. Such management threatens forest biodiversity and can reduce the provision of ecosystem services. Although the importance of ecosystem services is widely acknowledged, conservation strategies are hindered by poor knowledge about diversity patterns of service provider species as well as on mechanisms affecting these assemblages at different spatial and temporal scales. In this study, we assessed the effect of disturbance management on forest pollinator communities. To do so, we used a large-scale ecological experiment conducted in the year 2000, where forest complexity was manipulated with different harvest regimes and prescribed fire. Results were consistent with a positive response of pollinators to increasing habitat heterogeneity driven by past disturbances. Harvested sites harbored a diverse pollinator community, and showed higher spatial and temporal turnover in species richness. Conversely, old-growth forest communities were a nested subset of harvested sites and contained half of their total diversity. Variation in community composition (β diversity) was primarily affected by species temporal turnover. Throughout the season, β diversity was controlled by fire and harvesting legacies, which provide environmental heterogeneity in the form of flowering and nesting resources over space and time. Conservation strategies may undervalue ecosystem services in dynamic, naturally disturbance-driven, landscapes when relying solely on undisturbed forests areas. However, maintaining natural dynamics in early successional forests, by emulating natural disturbances at harvesting, hold promise for the conservation of both biodiversity and ecosystem services in boreal forests. © 2016 by the Ecological Society of America.

  3. Nitrogen fixation in moss-cyanobacteria associations in boreal forest ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rousk, Kathrin

    2014-05-01

    Nitrogen (N) limits the productivity in boreal forests. A major source of 'new' N for these forests is the fixation of atmospheric N2 preformed by cyanobacteria living in association with mosses and lichens. Mosses are a dominant feature in boreal forests, accounting for 60-90% of the groundcover in pristine boreal forests and have been found to be colonized by several N2-fixing cyanobacteria. Given the ubiquitous nature of mosses in these forests, their association with N2-fixing cyanobacteria could characterize the N cycle in these ecosystems. For instance, the feather moss Pleurozium schreberi with its associated cyanobacteria fixes 1-2 kg N ha-1 yr-1, which equals the amount that enters northern boreal forests via atmospheric N deposition. Nitrogen fixation in moss-cyanobacteria associations is affected by numerous abiotic factors that could modulate the N input to the system via the moss-cyanobacteria pathway. For instance, high N availability and dry conditions inhibit N2 fixation in moss-cyanobacteria associations while phosphorus availability and moist conditions promote N2 fixation. Further, N2fixation in moss-cyanobacteria associations is resilient, and can recover from increased N inputs (12 - 15 kg N ha-1 yr-1) as well as from drought stress (moss < 9% field moisture) upon removal of these stressors. Nevertheless, the question as to how important the N2 fixing capability of moss-cyanobacteria associations is as a source of 'new' N for the N cycle in boreal forests remains. For instance, mosses can retain acquired N over long periods of time (> 1 year) and the transfer of N from moss to soil in the short-term has so far only been shown to occur after disturbances (e.g. drying rewetting events, fires). I will present results from laboratory as well as field experiments aimed to elucidate the role moss-cyanobacteria associations play for the N cycle in boreal forests and how abiotic factors control the fixation of atmospheric N2.

  4. Assessing vulnerability to climate-induced changes in ecosystem services of boreal croplands and forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rankinen, Katri; Akujärvi, Anu; Holmberg, Maria

    2017-04-01

    Croplands and forests of the boreal region supply a wide range of ecosystem services. The properties and processes of these ecosystems regulate water flow and climate, and retain nutrients and store carbon. The functioning of the ecosystem processes depends on ambient temperatures and precipitation patterns, which are likely to continue changing in the boreal zone. MONIMET (LIFE12 ENV/FI/000409, 9/2013 - 9/2017) is an EU Life funded project about Climate Change Indicators and Vulnerability of Boreal Zone Applying Innovative Observation and Modeling Techniques. In this project, we calculated future changes of carbon storage in soil, and nutrient loading from soil to surface waters and drinking water supplies. We calculated the carbon storage of forests and croplands using the dynamic YASSO litter and soil carbon model. The simulated carbon budget estimates were upscaled to the river basin by combining them with gridded data of land cover. We simulated nutrient loading from two boreal catchments to the receiving waters using the dynamic, catchment scale model INCA. We calculated land use specific loading values for these two well monitored catchments that belong to the LTER (The Long Term Ecological Research) monitoring network, and upscaled these results to the larger river basin based on grid-scaled data of land cover. We used population projections as proxies for the societal demand for the services of climate regulation and water purification, and assessed thereby the vulnerability of society to climate-induced changes in these services. In this poster we present the technical frame of combining models and data.

  5. Links Among Warming, Fungal Communities, and Carbon Fluxes in Boreal Forest Ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allison, S. D.; Czimczik, C. I.; Treseder, K. K.

    2006-12-01

    Microbial responses to climate change could drive positive feedbacks to the carbon cycle, particularly in high latitude ecosystems. We used molecular and enzymatic approaches to determine whether fungal communities changed in response to experimental warming in boreal forest ecosystems. We also measured the flux and 14C signature of soil respiration from warmed and unwarmed soils to link microbial responses with the carbon cycle. In an early-successional site recovering from a 1999 fire, warming significantly increased the activities of cellulose- and chitin-degrading enzymes by 17% and 30%, respectively. In a second site dominated by mature black spruce trees, the activity of the chitin-degrading enzyme declined significantly by 24%. However, warming did not affect soil CO2 fluxes in either site, or the source of soil respiration as measured by 14C isotopic analyses in the mature forest site. Together, these results suggest that warming does alter fungal community composition and potentially carbon substrate utilization. However, the total amount and 14C age of microbially-respired carbon does not change. Despite shifts in fungal community composition, ecosystem processes driven by microbial activity may be resistant to climate warming in these well-drained boreal ecosystems.

  6. Tree Species Linked to Large Differences in Ecosystem Carbon Distribution in the Boreal Forest of Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Melvin, A. M.; Mack, M. C.; Johnstone, J. F.; Schuur, E. A. G.; Genet, H.; McGuire, A. D.

    2014-12-01

    In the boreal forest of Alaska, increased fire severity associated with climate change is altering plant-soil-microbial feedbacks and ecosystem carbon (C) dynamics. The boreal landscape has historically been dominated by black spruce (Picea mariana), a tree species associated with slow C turnover and large soil organic matter (SOM) accumulation. Historically, low severity fires have led to black spruce regeneration post-fire, thereby maintaining slow C cycling rates and large SOM pools. In recent decades however, an increase in high severity fires has led to greater consumption of the soil organic layer (SOL) during fire and subsequent establishment of deciduous tree species in areas previously dominated by black spruce. This shift to a more deciduous dominated landscape has many implications for ecosystem structure and function, as well as feedbacks to global C cycling. To improve our understanding of how boreal tree species affect C cycling, we quantified above- and belowground C stocks and fluxes in adjacent, mid-successional stands of black spruce and Alaska paper birch (Betula neoalaskana) that established following a 1958 fire near Fairbanks, Alaska. Although total ecosystem C pools (aboveground live tree biomass + dead wood + SOL + top 10 cm of mineral soil) were similar for the two stand types, the distribution of C among pools was markedly different. In black spruce, 78% of measured C was found in soil pools, primarily in the SOL, where spruce contained twice the C stored in paper birch (4.8 ± 0.3 vs. 2.4 ± 0.1 kg C m-2). In contrast, aboveground biomass dominated ecosystem C pools in birch forest (6.0 ± 0.3 vs. 2.5 ± 0.2 kg C m-2 in birch and spruce, respectively). Our findings suggest that tree species exert a strong influence over plant-soil-microbial feedbacks and may have long-term effects on ecosystem C sequestration and storage that feedback to the climate system.

  7. Characterizing forest fragments in boreal, temperate, and tropical ecosystems

    Treesearch

    Arjan J. H. Meddens; Andrew T. Hudak; Jeffrey S. Evans; William A. Gould; Grizelle Gonzalez

    2008-01-01

    An increased ability to analyze landscapes in a spatial manner through the use of remote sensing leads to improved capabilities for quantifying human-induced forest fragmentation. Developments of spatially explicit methods in landscape analyses are emerging. In this paper, the image delineation software program eCognition and the spatial pattern analysis program...

  8. Comparing soil biogeochemical processes in novel and natural boreal forest ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Quideau, S. A.; Swallow, M. J. B.; Prescott, C. E.; Grayston, S. J.; Oh, S.-W.

    2013-08-01

    Emulating the variability that exists in the natural landscape prior to disturbance should be a goal of soil reconstruction and land reclamation efforts following resource extraction. Long-term ecosystem sustainability within reclaimed landscapes can only be achieved with the re-establishment of biogeochemical processes between reconstructed soils and plants. In this study, we assessed key soil biogeochemical attributes (nutrient availability, organic matter composition, and microbial communities) in reconstructed, novel, anthropogenic ecosystems, covering different reclamation treatments following open-cast mining for oil extraction. We compared the attributes to those present in a range of natural soils representative of mature boreal forest ecosystems in the same area of Northern Alberta. Soil nutrient availability was determined in situ with resin probes, organic matter composition was described with 13C nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy and soil microbial community structure was characterized using phospholipid fatty acid analysis. Significant differences among natural ecosystems were apparent in nutrient availability and seemed more related to the dominant tree cover than to soil type. When analyzed together, all natural forests differed significantly from the novel ecosystems, in particular with respect to soil organic matter composition. However, there was some overlap between the reconstructed soils and some of the natural ecosystems in nutrient availability and microbial communities, but not in organic matter characteristics. Hence, our results illustrate the importance of considering the range of natural landscape variability and including several soil biogeochemical attributes when comparing novel, anthropogenic ecosystems to the mature ecosystems that constitute ecological targets.

  9. Comparing soil biogeochemical processes in novel and natural boreal forest ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Quideau, S. A.; Swallow, M. J. B.; Prescott, C. E.; Grayston, S. J.; Oh, S.-W.

    2013-04-01

    Emulating the variability that exists in the natural landscape prior to disturbance should be a goal of soil reconstruction and land reclamation efforts following resource extraction. Long-term ecosystem sustainability within reclaimed landscapes can only be achieved with the re-establishment of biogeochemical processes between reconstructed soils and plants. In this study, we assessed key soil biogeochemical attributes (nutrient availability, organic matter composition, and microbial communities) in reconstructed, novel, anthropogenic ecosystems covering different reclamation treatments following open-cast mining for oil extraction. We compared the attributes to those present in a range of natural soils representative of mature boreal forest ecosystems in the same area of northern Alberta. Soil nutrient availability was determined in situ with resin probes, organic matter composition was described with 13C nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy and soil microbial community structure was characterized using phospholipid fatty acid analysis. Significant differences among natural ecosystems were apparent in nutrient availability and seemed more related to the dominant tree cover than to soil type. When analyzed together, all natural forests differed significantly from the novel ecosystems, in particular with respect to soil organic matter composition. However, there was some overlap between the reconstructed soils and some of the natural ecosystems in nutrient availability and microbial communities, but not in organic matter characteristics. Hence, our results illustrate the importance of considering the range of natural landscape variability, and including several soil biogeochemical attributes when comparing novel, anthropogenic ecosystems to the mature ecosystems that constitute ecological targets.

  10. Bryophyte-cyanobacteria associations contribute to ecosystem-N-budget of boreal forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salemaa, Maija; Lindroos, Antti-Jussi; Merilä, Päivi; Mäkipää, Raisa; Smolander, Aino

    2014-05-01

    Bryophytes frequently dominate the ground vegetation on the forest floor in boreal region. Northern ecosystems are often nitrogen limited, and therefore biological nitrogen (N2) fixation of bryophyte-associated microbes is an important source of new N. In this study we estimated the N stock of bryophyte layer and the N input rate by N2 fixation of bryophyte-cyanobacteria associations at the ecosystem level. We studied 12 intensively monitored forest ecosystem plots (ICP Forests Level II) along a latitudinal gradient in Finland during 2009-2013. The total biomass and N stock of the bryophytes varied 700-2000 kg ha-1 and 9-23 kg ha-1, respectively. N2 fixation rate associated to bryophytes increased towards the north and was at highest 1-2 kg N ha-1 year-1 (based on the bryophyte biomass in the monitoring plots). This N input was at the same level as the N deposition in the northern Finland (1.5 kg N ha-1 year-1). In comparison, via needle litterfall and other tree litter c.a. 5 kg N ha-1 is annually returned to the nutrient cycle. In southern Finland, very low rates of N2 fixation were found probably because of inhibition by the anthropogenic N deposition. The upper parts of the bryophyte shoots showed 2-3 times higher N2-fixing rate than the lower parts, but differences between Hylocomium splendens and Pleurozium schreberi were minor. However, Dicranum species showed much lower N2 fixation rates compared to these two species. The moisture level of bryophytes and light/temperature conditions regulated strongly the rate of N2-fixing activity. The results showed that the bryophyte layer significantly contributes to the N input and plays an important role in controlling the N and C balances of boreal forests.

  11. Newtonian boreal forest ecology: The Scots pine ecosystem as an example

    PubMed Central

    Hari, Pertti; Aakala, Tuomas; Aalto, Juho; Bäck, Jaana; Hollmén, Jaakko; Jõgiste, Kalev; Koupaei, Kourosh Kabiri; Kähkönen, Mika A.; Korpela, Mikko; Kulmala, Liisa; Pumpanen, Jukka; Salkinoja-Salonen, Mirja; Schiestl-Aalto, Pauliina; Simojoki, Asko; Havimo, Mikko

    2017-01-01

    Isaac Newton's approach to developing theories in his book Principia Mathematica proceeds in four steps. First, he defines various concepts, second, he formulates axioms utilising the concepts, third, he mathematically analyses the behaviour of the system defined by the concepts and axioms obtaining predictions and fourth, he tests the predictions with measurements. In this study, we formulated our theory of boreal forest ecosystems, called NewtonForest, following the four steps introduced by Newton. The forest ecosystem is a complicated entity and hence we needed altogether 27 concepts to describe the material and energy flows in the metabolism of trees, ground vegetation and microbes in the soil, and to describe the regularities in tree structure. Thirtyfour axioms described the most important features in the behaviour of the forest ecosystem. We utilised numerical simulations in the analysis of the behaviour of the system resulting in clear predictions that could be tested with field data. We collected retrospective time series of diameters and heights for test material from 6 stands in southern Finland and five stands in Estonia. The numerical simulations succeeded to predict the measured diameters and heights, providing clear corroboration with our theory. PMID:28614351

  12. Newtonian boreal forest ecology: The Scots pine ecosystem as an example.

    PubMed

    Hari, Pertti; Aakala, Tuomas; Aalto, Juho; Bäck, Jaana; Hollmén, Jaakko; Jõgiste, Kalev; Koupaei, Kourosh Kabiri; Kähkönen, Mika A; Korpela, Mikko; Kulmala, Liisa; Nikinmaa, Eero; Pumpanen, Jukka; Salkinoja-Salonen, Mirja; Schiestl-Aalto, Pauliina; Simojoki, Asko; Havimo, Mikko

    2017-01-01

    Isaac Newton's approach to developing theories in his book Principia Mathematica proceeds in four steps. First, he defines various concepts, second, he formulates axioms utilising the concepts, third, he mathematically analyses the behaviour of the system defined by the concepts and axioms obtaining predictions and fourth, he tests the predictions with measurements. In this study, we formulated our theory of boreal forest ecosystems, called NewtonForest, following the four steps introduced by Newton. The forest ecosystem is a complicated entity and hence we needed altogether 27 concepts to describe the material and energy flows in the metabolism of trees, ground vegetation and microbes in the soil, and to describe the regularities in tree structure. Thirtyfour axioms described the most important features in the behaviour of the forest ecosystem. We utilised numerical simulations in the analysis of the behaviour of the system resulting in clear predictions that could be tested with field data. We collected retrospective time series of diameters and heights for test material from 6 stands in southern Finland and five stands in Estonia. The numerical simulations succeeded to predict the measured diameters and heights, providing clear corroboration with our theory.

  13. Multi-trophic resilience of boreal lake ecosystems to forest fires

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lewis, Tyler L.; Lindberg, Mark S.; Schmutz, Joel A.; Bertram, M.R.

    2014-01-01

    Fires are the major natural disturbance in the boreal forest, and their frequency and intensity will likely increase as the climate warms. Terrestrial nutrients released by fires may be transported to boreal lakes, stimulating increased primary productivity, which may radiate through multiple trophic levels. Using a before-after-control-impact (BACI) design, with pre- and postfire data from burned and unburned areas, we examined effects of a natural fire across several trophic levels of boreal lakes, from nutrient and chlorophyll levels, to macroinvertebrates, to waterbirds. Concentrations of total nitrogen and phosphorus were not affected by the fire. Chlorophyll levels were also unaffected, likely reflecting the stable nutrient concentrations. For aquatic invertebrates, we found that densities of three functional feeding groups did not respond to the fire (filterers, gatherers, scrapers), while two groups increased (shredders, predators). Amphipods accounted for 98% of shredder numbers, and we hypothesize that fire-mediated habitat changes may have favored their generalist feeding and habitat ecology. This increase in amphipods may, in turn, have driven increased predator densities, as amphipods were the most numerous invertebrate in our lakes and are commonly taken as prey. Finally, abundance of waterbird young, which feed primarily on aquatic invertebrates, was not affected by the fire. Overall, ecosystems of our study lakes were largely resilient to forest fires, likely due to their high initial nutrient concentrations and small catchment sizes. Moreover, this resilience spanned multiple trophic levels, a significant result for ecologically similar boreal regions, especially given the high potential for increased fires with future climate change.

  14. Multi-trophic resilience of boreal lake ecosystems to forest fires.

    PubMed

    Lewis, Tyler L; Lindberg, Mark S; Schmutz, Joel A; Bertram, Mark R

    2014-05-01

    Fires are the major natural disturbance in the boreal forest, and their frequency and intensity will likely increase as the climate warms. Terrestrial nutrients released by fires may be transported to boreal lakes, stimulating increased primary productivity, which may radiate through multiple trophic levels. Using a before-after-control-impact (BACI) design, with pre- and postfire data from burned and unburned areas, we examined effects of a natural fire across several trophic levels of boreal lakes, from nutrient and chlorophyll levels, to macroinvertebrates, to waterbirds. Concentrations of total nitrogen and phosphorus were not affected by the fire. Chlorophyll a levels were also unaffected, likely reflecting the stable nutrient concentrations. For aquatic invertebrates, we found that densities of three functional feeding groups did not respond to the fire (filterers, gatherers, scrapers), while two groups increased (shredders, predators). Amphipods accounted for 98% of shredder numbers, and we hypothesize that fire-mediated habitat changes may have favored their generalist feeding and habitat ecology. This increase in amphipods may, in turn, have driven increased predator densities, as amphipods were the most numerous invertebrate in our lakes and are commonly taken as prey. Finally, abundance of waterbird young, which feed primarily on aquatic invertebrates, was not affected by the fire. Overall, ecosystems of our study lakes were largely resilient to forest fires, likely due to their high initial nutrient concentrations and small catchment sizes. Moreover, this resilience spanned multiple trophic levels, a significant result for ecologically similar boreal regions, especially given the high potential for increased fires with future climate change.

  15. Projected dynamics of abiotic risks in boreal forest ecosystems (SRES A1B, B1)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Panferov, O.; Ahrends, B.; Doering, C.; Sogachev, A.

    2009-04-01

    The ongoing climate change causes an increasing frequency of weather extremes (Leckebusch et al., 2008), which can result in wide area damage events (drought, windthrows/breaks) within boreal forest ecosystem. The damage effects, however, depend not only on the strength of a driving force itself (e.g. wind speed) but also on combinations of effecting agents and forest structure. Thus, the present study investigates the projected future developments of abiotic risks in different boreal forests during the 21st Century under conditions of SRES scenarios A1B and B1. Climate scenario data of coupled ECHAM5-MPIOM were downscaled by the regional climate model (CLM) to the spatial resolution of 0.2° x 0.2°, using daily time- steps. With these input data the small-scale modelling with coupled process based sub-models (Jansen et al., 2008) was carried out e.g. for Solling region, (Germany) calculating the water and energy balance of forest ecosystems with modified BROOK 90 (Ahrends et al., 2009) and wind loading on trees with 3D ABL model SCADIS (Panferov and Sogachev, 2008). Norway spruce and Scots pine of various ages were chosen as typical tree species for boreal forest ecosystems and cambisols, podzolic cambisols and stagnosols as typical soil types. The risks of drought and windthrow/breaks for a certain forest stand result from daily combinations of soil water characteristics, static and gust wind loads and soil texture. Damaged stands show higher vulnerability and thus - positive feedback to climate forcing (Vygodskaya et al., 2008). Therefore differences of microclimatological conditions in the remaining stand after changes in forest structure (Radler et al, 2008) were taken into account. Modell output was aggregated to 30-years periods and compared to "present conditions" of 1981-2010. The results show an increment of drought risks towards 2100 caused by changes in precipitation pattern and increase of mean air temperature, whereas the A1B scenario is

  16. Why Do the Boreal Forest Ecosystems of Northwestern Europe Differ from Those of Western North America?

    PubMed Central

    Boonstra, Rudy; Andreassen, Harry P.; Boutin, Stan; Hušek, Jan; Ims, Rolf A.; Krebs, Charles J.; Skarpe, Christina; Wabakken, Petter

    2016-01-01

    Abstract The boreal forest is one of the largest terrestrial biomes on Earth. Conifers normally dominate the tree layer across the biome, but other aspects of ecosystem structure and dynamics vary geographically. The cause of the conspicuous differences in the understory vegetation and the herbivore–predator cycles between northwestern Europe and western North America presents an enigma. Ericaceous dwarf shrubs and 3– to 4-year vole–mustelid cycles characterize the European boreal forests, whereas tall deciduous shrubs and 10-year snowshoe hare–lynx cycles characterize the North American ones. We discuss plausible explanations for this difference and conclude that it is bottom-up: Winter climate is the key determinant of the dominant understory vegetation that then determines the herbivore–predator food-web interactions. The crucial unknown for the twenty-first century is how climate change and increasing instability will affect these forests, both with respect to the dynamics of individual plant and animal species and to their community interactions. PMID:28533563

  17. Why Do the Boreal Forest Ecosystems of Northwestern Europe Differ from Those of Western North America?

    PubMed

    Boonstra, Rudy; Andreassen, Harry P; Boutin, Stan; Hušek, Jan; Ims, Rolf A; Krebs, Charles J; Skarpe, Christina; Wabakken, Petter

    2016-09-01

    The boreal forest is one of the largest terrestrial biomes on Earth. Conifers normally dominate the tree layer across the biome, but other aspects of ecosystem structure and dynamics vary geographically. The cause of the conspicuous differences in the understory vegetation and the herbivore-predator cycles between northwestern Europe and western North America presents an enigma. Ericaceous dwarf shrubs and 3- to 4-year vole-mustelid cycles characterize the European boreal forests, whereas tall deciduous shrubs and 10-year snowshoe hare-lynx cycles characterize the North American ones. We discuss plausible explanations for this difference and conclude that it is bottom-up: Winter climate is the key determinant of the dominant understory vegetation that then determines the herbivore-predator food-web interactions. The crucial unknown for the twenty-first century is how climate change and increasing instability will affect these forests, both with respect to the dynamics of individual plant and animal species and to their community interactions.

  18. Carbon allocation patterns in boreal and hemiboreal forest ecosystems along the gradient of soil fertility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kriiska, Kaie; Uri, Veiko; Frey, Jane; Napa, Ülle; Kabral, Naima; Soosaar, Kaido; Rannik, Kaire; Ostonen, Ivika

    2017-04-01

    Carbon (C) allocation plays a critical role in forest ecosystem carbon cycling. Changes in C allocation alter ecosystems carbon sequestration and plant-soil-atmosphere gas exchange, hence having an impact on the climate. Currently, there is lack of reliable indicators that show the direction of C accumulation patterns in forest ecosystems on regional scale. The first objective of our study was to determine the variability of carbon allocation in hemiboreal coniferous forests along the gradient of soil fertility in Estonia. We measured C stocks and fluxes, such as litter, fine root biomass and production, soil respiration etc. in 8 stands of different site types - Scots pine (Cladonia, Vaccinium, Myrtillus, Fragaria) and Norway spruce (Polytrichum, Myrtillus, Oxalis, Calamagrostis alvar). The suitability of above- and belowground litter production (AG/BG) ratio was analysed as a carbon allocation indicator. The second aim of the study was to analyse forest C allocation patterns along the north-south gradient from northern boreal Finland to hemiboreal Estonia. Finally, C sequestration in silver birch and grey alder stands were compared with coniferous stands in order to determine the impact of tree species on carbon allocation. Preliminary results indicate that estimated AG/BG ratio (0.5 ... 3.0) tends to decrease with increasing soil organic horizon C/N ratio, indicating that in less fertile sites more carbon is allocated into belowground through fine root growth and in consequence the soil organic carbon stock increases. Similar trends were found on the north-south forest gradient. However, there was a significant difference between coniferous and broadleaf stands in C allocation patterns. Net ecosystem exchange in Estonian coniferous stands varied from -1.64 ... 3.95 t C ha-1 yr-1, whereas older stands tended to be net carbon sources.

  19. Carbon and Nitrogen Pools of Soil and Fine Roots across Alaskan Tundra and Boreal Forest Ecosystems.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McCulloch, L. A.; Loranty, M. M.; Cardelús, C. L.; Natali, S.; Kholodov, A. L.

    2016-12-01

    High-latitude terrestrial ecosystems are typically classified as extremely nitrogen-limited, where mineralization is the primary mechanism to create available nitrogen. Organic matter decomposition constitutes the largest source of soil nitrogen in these systems. High-latitude ecosystems have cold soils that are often saturated, allowing belowground biomass to accumulate as a result of slow decomposition rates. This accumulation of organic matter is an important pool of carbon and nitrogen. However, the decomposition of this organic matter will likely accelerate with warming temperatures, leading to an increase in nitrogen available to vegetation. Therefore, a surge in available nitrogen could contribute to predicted increases in vegetation productivity with climatic warming. This study examines variability in the C:N ratio, an indicator of nitrogen limitation, between live and dead fine root biomass and soil across Alaskan ecosystems in order to understand the spatial variability of the nitrogen cycle across a wide range of high-latitude ecosystems. Soils were collected along a latitudinal and climatic gradient throughout Interior Alaska, the Arctic North Slope and Coastal Western Alaska. Several sites located in close proximity were chosen to control for geological and climatic differences among sites, allowing differences to be attributed to the proximal ecosystem. Three paired samples of roots and soils were collected at each site. The belowground biomass samples were sorted into two categories including fine-live and fine-dead. We measured the carbon and nitrogen of the soil and ground fine roots on a Costech Elemental Analyzer. We found significant variation in C:N ratios of live and dead roots overall, as well as across sites. Contrasting predictions, dead roots had significantly lower ratios than live roots (32.16 ±1.54; p < 0.0001), possibly due to less carbon present from decomposition. Boreal forests had higher C:N ratios (49.51 ± 3.28) than tundra

  20. Effects and Feedbacks of Windthrow/breaks in Boreal Forest Ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Panferov, O.; Sogachev, A.; Radler, K.; Oltchev, A.; Gravenhorst, G.

    2008-12-01

    The increased frequency of severe storms (Leckebusch et al., 2007) as a result of ongoing climate change, results in a wide area damage events within boreal forest ecosystems. The damage occurs at exposed forest edges as well as inside forest stands creating the gaps. Once a windthrow/break gap occurs, it results in changes of surface albedo and microclimatological conditions and in increasing wind stress on remaining trees around the gap which in turn increase the risk of further wind damage. The self-induced growth of windthrow gap provides other positive as well as negative feedbacks to climate forcing at different spatial and temporal scales as shown in Vygodskaya et al., 2007, e.g. an increase of CO2 efflux (climate warming) and an increase of surface albedo (climate cooling). The present study characterizes the spatial variation of wind load and the changes in radiative regime (surface albedo) within the damaged forest stand. For description of wind field and load on trees the atmospheric boundary-layer two-equation closure model SCADIS based on transport equations for turbulent kinetic energy (E) and specific dissipation (omega) (E-omega model), which accounts for the flow dynamics within a plant canopy (Panferov and Sogachev, 2008; Sogachev and Panferov, 2006) was used. The radiative regime within the damaged forest is described by means of a three-dimensional radiation transfer model SPM3D (Panferov et al., 2005). A series of numerical experiments with circular and rectangular forest gaps with sizes from 3 to 75 tree heights, h, have been carried out for a modelled boreal forest. To evaluate the changes produced by gaps relatively to undisturbed forest all characteristics were normalized by their values for the latter. The results of the study show that the magnitude of wind load on trees surrounding the newly created forest gaps increases with gap size and is app. 7 times higher than the load on trees in an undisturbed forest. The gust component of wind

  1. Ecosystem services of boreal forests - Carbon budget mapping at high resolution.

    PubMed

    Akujärvi, Anu; Lehtonen, Aleksi; Liski, Jari

    2016-10-01

    The carbon (C) cycle of forests produces ecosystem services (ES) such as climate regulation and timber production. Mapping these ES using simple land cover -based proxies might add remarkable inaccuracy to the estimates. A framework to map the current status of the C budget of boreal forested landscapes was developed. The C stocks of biomass and soil and the annual change in these stocks were quantified in a 20 × 20 m resolution at the regional level on mineral soils in southern Finland. The fine-scale variation of the estimates was analyzed geo-statistically. The reliability of the estimates was evaluated by comparing them to measurements from the national multi-source forest inventory. The C stocks of forests increased slightly from the south coast to inland whereas the changes in these stocks were more uniform. The spatial patches of C stocks were larger than those of C stock changes. The patch size of the C stocks reflected the spatial variation in the environmental conditions, and that of the C stock changes the typical area of forest management compartments. The simulated estimates agreed well with the measurements indicating a good mapping framework performance. The mapping framework is the basis for evaluating the effects of forest management alternatives on C budget at high resolution across large spatial scales. It will be coupled with the assessment of other ES and biodiversity to study their relationships. The framework integrated a wide suite of simulation models and extensive inventory data. It provided reliable estimates of the human influence on C cycle in forested landscapes.

  2. Regional Assessment of soil organic matter profile distribution in the boreal forest ecosystems of Russia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meshalkina, Joulia; Belousova, Nataliya; Vasenev, Ivan

    2015-04-01

    Boreal forest ecosystems play one of the key roles in the Global Change challenges responses. The soil carbon stocks are principal regulators of their environmental functions. Boreal forest soil cover is characterized by mutually increased spatial variability in soil organic matter content (SOMC) that one need to take into attention in its current and future environmental functions state assessment including the potential of regional soil organic matter stocks changes due to Global Change and inverse ones. Knowledge of the regional regularities in SOMC profile vertical distribution allows improving their soil environmental functions prediction land quality evaluation. More than 900 profiles of SOMC distribution were studied using the database Boreal that contains data on Russian boreal soils developed in drained conditions on loamy soil forming rocks. These soil profiles belong to seven main types of forest soils of Russian classification and six major regions of Russia. The predomination of accumulation profile type was observed for all cases. Thus the vertical distribution of OMC in the profiles of boreal soils can be described as follow: the layer of maximum OMC is replaced by the layer of dramatic OMC reduction; then the layer of minimal OMC extends up to 2.5 m. The layer of maximal OMC accumulation has the low depth of 5-15 cm. It carried out in different genetic horizons: A1, A1A2, A2, B, AB; sometimes it captures the A2B horizon or the upper part of the illuvial horizon. The OMC in this layer increases from the northern taiga to the southern taiga and from the European part of Russia to Siberia. The second layer is characterized by its depth and by the gradient of OMC decreasing. A great variety of the both parameters is observed. The layer of the sharp OMC fall most often fits with the eluvial horizons A2 or А2В or even the upper part of the Вt (textural) or Bm (metamorphic) horizons. The layer of permanently small OMC may begin in any genetic horizon

  3. Natural disturbance impacts on ecosystem services and biodiversity in temperate and boreal forests.

    PubMed

    Thom, Dominik; Seidl, Rupert

    2016-08-01

    In many parts of the world forest disturbance regimes have intensified recently, and future climatic changes are expected to amplify this development further in the coming decades. These changes are increasingly challenging the main objectives of forest ecosystem management, which are to provide ecosystem services sustainably to society and maintain the biological diversity of forests. Yet a comprehensive understanding of how disturbances affect these primary goals of ecosystem management is still lacking. We conducted a global literature review on the impact of three of the most important disturbance agents (fire, wind, and bark beetles) on 13 different ecosystem services and three indicators of biodiversity in forests of the boreal, cool- and warm-temperate biomes. Our objectives were to (i) synthesize the effect of natural disturbances on a wide range of possible objectives of forest management, and (ii) investigate standardized effect sizes of disturbance for selected indicators via a quantitative meta-analysis. We screened a total of 1958 disturbance studies published between 1981 and 2013, and reviewed 478 in detail. We first investigated the overall effect of disturbances on individual ecosystem services and indicators of biodiversity by means of independence tests, and subsequently examined the effect size of disturbances on indicators of carbon storage and biodiversity by means of regression analysis. Additionally, we investigated the effect of commonly used approaches of disturbance management, i.e. salvage logging and prescribed burning. We found that disturbance impacts on ecosystem services are generally negative, an effect that was supported for all categories of ecosystem services, i.e. supporting, provisioning, regulating, and cultural services (P < 0.001). Indicators of biodiversity, i.e. species richness, habitat quality and diversity indices, on the other hand were found to be influenced positively by disturbance (P < 0.001). Our analyses thus

  4. Effects of climatic changes on carbon dioxide and water vapor fluxes in boreal forest ecosystems of European part of Russia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Olchev, A.; Novenko, E.; Desherevskaya, O.; Krasnorutskaya, K.; Kurbatova, J.

    2009-10-01

    Effects of possible climatic and vegetation changes on H2O and CO2 fluxes in boreal forest ecosystems of the central part of European Russia were quantified using modeling and experimental data. The future pattern of climatic conditions for the period up to 2100 was derived using the global climatic model ECHAM5 (Roeckner et al 2003 The Atmospheric General Circulation Model ECHAM 5. PART I: Model Description, Report 349 (Hamburg: Max-Planck Institute for Meteorology) p 127) with the A1B emission scenario. The possible trends of future vegetation changes were obtained by reconstructions of vegetation cover and paleoclimatic conditions in the Late Pleistocene and Holocene, as provided from pollen and plant macrofossil analysis of profiles in the Central Forest State Natural Biosphere Reserve (CFSNBR). Applying the method of paleoanalogues demonstrates that increasing the mean annual temperature, even by 1-2 °C, could result in reducing the proportion of spruce in boreal forest stands by up to 40%. Modeling experiments, carried out using a process-based Mixfor-SVAT model, show that the expected future climatic and vegetation changes lead to a significant increase of net ecosystem exchange (NEE) and gross primary productivity (GPP) of the boreal forests. Despite the expected warming and moistening of the climate, the modeling experiments indicate a relatively weak increase of annual evapotranspiration (ET) and even a reduction of transpiration (TR) rates of forest ecosystems compared to present conditions.

  5. Characterizing Zinc Speciation in Soils from a Smelter-Affected Boreal Forest Ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Hamilton, Jordan G; Farrell, Richard E; Chen, Ning; Feng, Renfei; Reid, Joel; Peak, Derek

    2016-03-01

    HudBay Minerals, Inc., has mined and/or processed Zn and Cu ore in Flin Flon, MB, Canada, since the 1930s. The boreal forest ecosystem and soil surrounding these facilities have been severely impacted by mixed metal contamination and HSO deposition. Zinc is one of the most prevalent smelter-derived contaminants and has been identified as a key factor that may be limiting revegetation. Metal toxicity is related to both total concentrations and speciation; therefore, X-ray absorption spectroscopy and X-ray fluorescence mapping were used to characterize Zn speciation in soils throughout the most heavily contaminated areas of the landscape. Zinc speciation was linked to two distinct soil types. Group I soils consist of exposed soils in weathered positions of bedrock outcrops with Zn present primarily as franklinite, a (ZnFeO) spinel mineral. Group II soils are stabilized by an invasive metal-tolerant grass species, with Zn found as a mixture of octahedral (Fe oxides) and tetrahedral Mn oxides) adsorption complexes with a franklinite component. Soil erosion influences Zn speciation through the redistribution of Zn and soil particulates from Group I landscape positions to Group II soils. Despite Group II soils having the highest concentrations of CaCl-extractable Zn, they support metal-tolerant plant growth. The metal-tolerant plants are probably preferentially colonizing these areas due to better soil and nutrient conditions as a result of soil deposition from upslope Group I areas. Zinc concentration and speciation appears to not influence the colonization by metal-tolerant grasses, but the overall soil properties and erosion effects prevent the revegetation by native boreal forest species. Copyright © by the American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, and Soil Science Society of America, Inc.

  6. Contribution of Soil Surface CO2 Efflux to Boreal Forest Net Ecosystem Flux: Measurements and Modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Niinisto, S. M.; Kellomaki, S.

    2001-05-01

    The aims of the study are to assess the contribution of measured soil surface CO2 efflux to boreal forest net ecosystem flux and to test whether modeled component fluxes such as leaf and surface soil fluxes are consistent with the net flux measured from a tower over a forest stand. Net ecosystem flux was measured continuously in a boreal Scots pine forest in eastern Finland (62° 52'N, 30° 49'E) during the growing period in 2000. Height and diameter of trees in this 50-year-old stand ranged from 10 to 13 m and from 9 to 12 cm, respectively, for 80 % of trees. Eddy-flux measurements were made at the top of a 32-m tower, about 20 m above the canopy. Wind velocity and virtual temperature were measured with a three-axis sonic anemometer. CO2 fluctuations at 32 m were continuously monitored with a CO2 analyzer. Raw data were sampled at 10 Hz and 1/2 hr fluxes calculated. Soil surface CO2 efflux was measured on the top of a feather moss or lichen cover with an IRGA and four automated open dynamic chambers, each equipped with a PAR sensor and air temperature probe. Chambers of 19 cm diameter were made of transparent PMMA. Measurements were made twice per hr, lasting 1 min each. Periods considered in this study included both early and late season conditions, since data from the automated soil surface efflux measurements were available from May to June as well as from August to September. In this study, we aim to compare the measured soil surface CO2 efflux with simultaneously measured net ecosystem flux. The performance of the automated chambers will be tested by comparing with simultaneous measurements from a dark closed static chamber at the same site. A simple regression model, using soil surface temperature as an independent variable, will be built using the static dark chamber data from the previous years. A rough correction for the carbon uptake of moss will be made. This model could be validated later with automated measurements. To investigate further the

  7. Live and Dead Root Biomass in Alaskan Tundra and Boreal Forest Ecosystems.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McCulloch, L. A.; Loranty, M. M.; Natali, S.; Kholodov, A. L.

    2015-12-01

    High-latitude ecosystems are important sinks, as well as potentially large sources of carbon as the climate continues to change. Belowground biomass of vegetation can act as both a sink and source of carbon; with live root biomass acting as a sink of carbon stores, and dead root biomass acting as a source of carbon to the atmosphere. There is significant literature citing the large ratio of belowground to aboveground biomass in tundra ecosystems, yet understanding of allocation in forested regions of the artic is less understood. Arctic vegetation is investing more resources and energy into belowground biomass relative to aboveground biomass compared to other ecosystems. However, permafrost ecosystems have low decomposition rates as a result of their cold and saturated soils. This allows for the accumulation of a thick organic layer mainly composed of decomposing belowground biomass. Fine roots are of particular importance because their rapid turnover rates makes them important contributions to soil carbon pools. To quantify the ratio of dead to live roots in tundra and boreal forest ecosystems, soils were collected along a latitudinal gradient throughout Interior Alaska, the Arctic North Slope and Coastal Western Alaska. Several sites located in close proximity were chosen to control for geological and climatic differences among sites, allowing differences to be attributed to the proximal ecosystem. Soil samples were washed, sieved and the roots were sorted into the four categories, including fine-live, fine-dead, coarse-live, and coarse-dead. Classification of these roots followed well established protocols based on visual and physical cues with coarse roots being greater than 2mm. Dead to live ratios of root biomass varied from 4.91 to 45.98, averaging at 14.29 +/- 11.39. Belowground allocation of plant biomass and associated resources may not be significantly larger than aboveground allocation because the majority of the belowground biomass is dead and non

  8. Moss-cyanobacteria associations as biogenic sources of nitrogen in boreal forest ecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Rousk, Kathrin; Jones, Davey L.; DeLuca, Thomas H.

    2013-01-01

    The biological fixation of atmospheric nitrogen (N) is a major pathway for available N entering ecosystems. In N-limited boreal forests, a significant amount of N2 is fixed by cyanobacteria living in association with mosses, contributing up to 50% to the total N input. In this review, we synthesize reports on the drivers of N2 fixation in feather moss-cyanobacteria associations to gain a deeper understanding of their role for ecosystem-N-cycling. Nitrogen fixation in moss-cyanobacteria associations is inhibited by N inputs and therefore, significant fixation occurs only in low N-deposition areas. While it has been shown that artificial N additions in the laboratory as well as in the field inhibit N2 fixation in moss-cyanobacteria associations, the type, as well as the amounts of N that enters the system, affect N2 fixation differently. Another major driver of N2 fixation is the moisture status of the cyanobacteria-hosting moss, wherein moist conditions promote N2 fixation. Mosses experience large fluctuations in their hydrological status, undergoing significant natural drying and rewetting cycles over the course of only a few hours, especially in summer, which likely compromises the N input to the system via N2 fixation. Perhaps the most central question, however, that remains unanswered is the fate of the fixed N2 in mosses. The cyanobacteria are likely to leak N, but whether this N is transferred to the soil and if so, at which rates and timescales, is unknown. Despite our increasing understanding of the drivers of N2 fixation, the role moss-cyanobacteria associations play in ecosystem-N-cycling remains unresolved. Further, the relationship mosses and cyanobacteria share is unknown to date and warrants further investigation. PMID:23785359

  9. Moss-cyanobacteria associations as biogenic sources of nitrogen in boreal forest ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Rousk, Kathrin; Jones, Davey L; Deluca, Thomas H

    2013-01-01

    The biological fixation of atmospheric nitrogen (N) is a major pathway for available N entering ecosystems. In N-limited boreal forests, a significant amount of N2 is fixed by cyanobacteria living in association with mosses, contributing up to 50% to the total N input. In this review, we synthesize reports on the drivers of N2 fixation in feather moss-cyanobacteria associations to gain a deeper understanding of their role for ecosystem-N-cycling. Nitrogen fixation in moss-cyanobacteria associations is inhibited by N inputs and therefore, significant fixation occurs only in low N-deposition areas. While it has been shown that artificial N additions in the laboratory as well as in the field inhibit N2 fixation in moss-cyanobacteria associations, the type, as well as the amounts of N that enters the system, affect N2 fixation differently. Another major driver of N2 fixation is the moisture status of the cyanobacteria-hosting moss, wherein moist conditions promote N2 fixation. Mosses experience large fluctuations in their hydrological status, undergoing significant natural drying and rewetting cycles over the course of only a few hours, especially in summer, which likely compromises the N input to the system via N2 fixation. Perhaps the most central question, however, that remains unanswered is the fate of the fixed N2 in mosses. The cyanobacteria are likely to leak N, but whether this N is transferred to the soil and if so, at which rates and timescales, is unknown. Despite our increasing understanding of the drivers of N2 fixation, the role moss-cyanobacteria associations play in ecosystem-N-cycling remains unresolved. Further, the relationship mosses and cyanobacteria share is unknown to date and warrants further investigation.

  10. Impacts of climatic changes on carbon and water balance components of boreal forest ecosystems in central part of European Russia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Olchev, A.; Novenko, E.; Desherevskaya, O.; Kurbatova, J.

    2009-04-01

    Within the framework of the study the possible impacts of climatic changes on carbon and water balances of boreal forest ecosystems of the central part of European Russia for period up to 2100 was estimated using results of model simulations and field measurements. The boreal forests of the Central Forest State Natural Biosphere Reserve (CFSNBR) were selected for the study. They are located at the southern boundary of south taiga zone in the European part of Russia (Tver region) and it can be expected that they will be very sensitive to modern climate warming. Expected future pattern of climatic parameters in the study area was derived using the global climatic model ECHAM5 (MPI Hamburg, Germany) and climatic scenarios B1, A1B and A2 (IPCC 2007). The possible scenarios of species composition changes of the boreal forests were developed using reconstructions of Holocene vegetation cover and climatic conditions on the base of pollen and plant macrofossil analysis of peat profiles in CFSNBR. The annual future pattern of CO2 and H2O fluxes of the forests were simulated using a process-based Mixfor-SVAT model (Olchev et al. 2002, 2008). The main advantage of Mixfor-SVAT is that it allows us to describe CO2 and H2O fluxes both in mono-specific and mixed forest stands. It is able to quantify both total ecosystem fluxes and flux partitioning among different tree species and canopy layers. It is obvious that it can be very helpful to describe accurately effects of species composition changes on structure of dynamics of carbon and water balance of forest ecosystems. Results of modeling experiments show that expected climatic and vegetation changes can have significant impact on evapotranspiration, transpiration, Net Ecosystem Exchange (NEE), Gross (GPP) and Net (NPP) Primary Productivities of boreal forest ecosystems. These changes have a clear seasonal trend and they are depended on species composition of a forest stand. This study was supported by the Russian Foundation

  11. Remote sensing of net ecosystem productivity based on component spectrum and soil respiration observation in a boreal forest, interior Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kushida, Keiji; Kim, Yongwon; Tanaka, Noriyuki; Fukuda, Masami

    2004-03-01

    We built a remote-sensing method for determining leaf area index (LAI) and ground cover mosses/lichens in boreal forests by field component spectral observation and radiative transfer modeling based on the spectrum. The method was applied to evaluate annual net ecosystem productivity (NEP) distribution in a boreal forest, interior Alaska, by accounting for net primary productivity (NPP) of the vegetation compositions and soil respiration observation synchronized to the spectral observation. Spectral reflectance and soil respiration were observed in two 30-m × 30-m plots in black spruce stands, central Alaska. Spectral characteristics of the forest floor and the needle leaves were used as input parameters of a radiative transfer model to evaluate nadir reflectances of spruce communities in relation to varying upper layer LAI, forest floor bryophyte types, and leaf spectral characteristics. Using the relationship, we obtained LAI and bryophyte area ratios for each pixel that corresponds to spruce forest on Landsat ETM+ imagery. The LAI-NPP relationship of spruce forest was estimated from 's [1981] normal yield table data and specific leaf area, and NPP was calculated from LAI. Observations of daily respiration were extrapolated to annual timescales using soil temperature. On the basis of the annual soil respiration and NPP of the upper layer and forest floor, annual NEP geographical distribution in a recent normal year was estimated from remotely sensed LAI and forest floor bryophyte area ratios. The annually estimated NEP was 51 g C/m2/yr, which corresponds to the value (55 g C/m2/yr) for 150-year-old black spruce forest in the Boreal Ecosystem-Atmosphere Study (BOREAS) region, Canada.

  12. Disturbance in boreal forest ecosystems: human impacts and natural processes. Proceedings of the International Boreal Forest Research Association 1997 annual meeting; 1997 August 4-7; Duluth, Minnesota.

    Treesearch

    Susan G. Conard

    2000-01-01

    The papers in these proceedings cover a wide range of topics related to human and natural disturbance processes in forests of the boreal zone in North America and Eurasia. Topics include historic and predicted landscape change; forest management; disturbance by insects, fire, air pollution, severe weather, and global climate change; and carbon cycling.

  13. Photosynthesis and light-use efficiency by plants in a Canadian boreal forest ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Whitehead, D; Gower, S T

    2001-08-01

    Measurements of the photosynthetic response to midsummer irradiance were made for 11 species representing the dominant trees, understory shrubs, herbaceous plants and moss species in an old black spruce (Picea mariana (Mill.) B.S.P.) boreal forest ecosystem. Maximum rates of photosynthesis per unit foliage area at saturating irradiance, A(max), were highest for aspen (Populus tremuloides Michx.), reaching 16 micromol m(-2) s(-1). For tamarack (Larix laricina (Du Roi) K. Kock) and P. mariana, Amax was only 2.6 and 1.8 micromol m(-2) s(-1), respectively. Values of A(max) for understory shrubs and herbaceous plants were clustered between 9 and 11 micromol m(-2) s(-1), whereas A(max) of feather moss (Pleurozium schreberi (Brid.) Mitt.) reached only 1.9 micromol m(-2) s(-1). No corrections were made for differences in shoot structure, but values of photosynthetic light-use efficiency were similar for most species (70-80 mmol CO2 mol(-1)); however, they were much lower for L. laricina and P. mariana (15 mmol CO2 mol(-1)) and much higher for P. schreberi (102 m;mol CO2 mol(-1)). There was a linear relationship between Amax and foliage nitrogen concentration on an area basis for the broad-leaved species in the canopy and understory, but the data for P. mariana, L. laricina and P. schreberi fell well below this line. We conclude that it is not possible to scale photosynthesis from leaves to the canopy in this ecosystem based on a single relationship between photosynthetic rate and foliage nitrogen concentration.

  14. Vapor pressure deficit controls on fire ignition and fire spread in boreal forest ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sedano, F.; Randerson, J. T.

    2014-01-01

    Climate-driven changes in the fire regime within boreal forest ecosystems are likely to have important effects on carbon cycling and species composition. In the context of improving fire management options and developing more realistic scenarios of future change, it is important to understand how meteorology regulates different fire processes, including ignition, daily fire spread rates, and cumulative annual burned area. Here we combined MODIS active fires (MCD14ML), MODIS imagery (MOD13A1) and ancillary historic fire perimeter information to produce a dataset of daily fire spread maps of Alaska for the period 2002-2011. This approach provided a spatial and temporally continuous representation of fire progression and a precise identification of ignition and extinction locations and dates for each wildfire. The fire-spread maps were analyzed together with daily vapor pressure deficit (VPD) observations from the North American Regional Reanalysis (NARR) and lightning strikes from the Alaska Lightning Detection Network (ALDN). We found a significant relationship between daily VPD and probability that a lightning strike would develop into a fire ignition. In the first 5 days after ignition, above average VPD increased the probability that fires would grow to large or very large sizes. Strong relationships also were identified between VPD and burned area at several levels of temporal and spatial aggregation. As a consequence of regional coherence in meteorology, ignition, daily fire spread rates, and fire extinction events were often synchronized across different fires in interior Alaska. At a regional scale, the sum of positive VPD anomalies during the fire season was positively correlated with annual burned area during the NARR era (1979-2011; R2 = 0.45). Some of the largest fires we mapped had slow initial growth, indicating opportunities may exist for suppression efforts to adaptively manage these forests for climate change. The results of our spatiotemporal

  15. The potentiation of zinc toxicity by soil moisture in a boreal forest ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Owojori, Olugbenga J; Siciliano, Steven D

    2015-03-01

    Northern boreal forests often experience forest dieback as a result of metal ore mining and smelting. The common solution is to lime the soil, which increases pH, reducing metal toxicity and encouraging recovery. In certain situations, however, such as in Flin Flon, Manitoba, Canada, liming has yielded only moderate benefits, with some locations responding well to liming and other locations not at all. In an effort to increase the effectiveness of the ecorestoration strategy, the authors investigated if these differences in liming responsiveness were linked to differences in toxicity. Toxicity of metal-impacted Flin Flon soils on the oribatid mite Oppia nitens and the collembolan Folsomia candida was assessed, with a view toward identifying the metal of concern in the area. The effects of moisture content on metal sorption, uptake, and toxicity to the invertebrates were also investigated. Toxicity tests with the invertebrates were conducted using either Flin Flon soils or artificial soils with moisture content adjusted to 30%, 45%, 60%, or 75% of the maximum water-holding capacity of the soil samples. The Relative to Cd Toxicity Model identified Zn as the metal of concern in the area, and this was confirmed using validation tests with field contaminated soils. Furthermore, increasing the moisture content in soils increased the amount of mobile Zn available for uptake with the ion exchange resin. Survival and reproduction of both invertebrates were reduced under Zn exposure as moisture level increased. Thus, moisture-collecting landforms, which are often also associated with high Zn concentrations at Flin Flon, have, as a result, higher Zn toxicity to the soil ecosystem because of increases in soil moisture.

  16. Remote sensing of net ecosystem productivity based on component spectrum and soil respiration observation in boreal forest, interior Alaska.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kushida, K.; Kim, Y.; Tanaka, N.; Fukuda, M.

    2003-12-01

    We built a remote sensing method for leaf area index (LAI) and ground cover mosses / lichens in boreal forest by field component spectral observation and radiative transfer modeling based on the spectrum. The method was applied to evaluate annual net ecosystem productivity (NEP) distribution in boreal forest, interior Alaska by combining soil respiration observation synchronized to the spectral observation. Spectral reflectance and soil respiration were observed in two 30m X 30m plots in black spruce stands, central Alaska. Spectral characteristics of the forest floor and the needle leaves were used as input parameters of a radiative transfer model to evaluate nadir reflectances of spruce communities in relation to varying upper layer LAI, forest floor bryophyte types, and leaf spectral characteristics. Using the relationship, we obtained LAI and bryophyte area ratios for each pixel that corresponds to spruce forest on Landsat ETM+ imagery. The LAI-NPP relationship was estimated from Plonski's normal yield table data and specific leaf area, and NPP was calculated from LAI. Based on the observed annual soil respiration and NPP of upper layer and forest floor, annual NEP geographical distribution was estimated as a mean value in recent 30-100 years from remotely sensed LAI and forest floor bryophyte area ratios. The annually estimated NEP was 51 gC/m2/year, which corresponds to the value (55 gC/m2/year) of 150-year-old black spruce forest in the BOREAS study region, Canada.

  17. Constraining ecosystem model with adaptive Metropolis algorithm using boreal forest site eddy covariance measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mäkelä, Jarmo; Susiluoto, Jouni; Markkanen, Tiina; Aurela, Mika; Järvinen, Heikki; Mammarella, Ivan; Hagemann, Stefan; Aalto, Tuula

    2016-12-01

    We examined parameter optimisation in the JSBACH (Kaminski et al., 2013; Knorr and Kattge, 2005; Reick et al., 2013) ecosystem model, applied to two boreal forest sites (Hyytiälä and Sodankylä) in Finland. We identified and tested key parameters in soil hydrology and forest water and carbon-exchange-related formulations, and optimised them using the adaptive Metropolis (AM) algorithm for Hyytiälä with a 5-year calibration period (2000-2004) followed by a 4-year validation period (2005-2008). Sodankylä acted as an independent validation site, where optimisations were not made. The tuning provided estimates for full distribution of possible parameters, along with information about correlation, sensitivity and identifiability. Some parameters were correlated with each other due to a phenomenological connection between carbon uptake and water stress or other connections due to the set-up of the model formulations. The latter holds especially for vegetation phenology parameters. The least identifiable parameters include phenology parameters, parameters connecting relative humidity and soil dryness, and the field capacity of the skin reservoir. These soil parameters were masked by the large contribution from vegetation transpiration. In addition to leaf area index and the maximum carboxylation rate, the most effective parameters adjusting the gross primary production (GPP) and evapotranspiration (ET) fluxes in seasonal tuning were related to soil wilting point, drainage and moisture stress imposed on vegetation. For daily and half-hourly tunings the most important parameters were the ratio of leaf internal CO2 concentration to external CO2 and the parameter connecting relative humidity and soil dryness. Effectively the seasonal tuning transferred water from soil moisture into ET, and daily and half-hourly tunings reversed this process. The seasonal tuning improved the month-to-month development of GPP and ET, and produced the most stable estimates of water use

  18. Inclusion of Additional Plant Species and Trait Information in Dynamic Vegetation Modeling of Arctic Tundra and Boreal Forest Ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Euskirchen, E. S.; Patil, V.; Roach, J.; Griffith, B.; McGuire, A. D.

    2015-12-01

    Dynamic vegetation models (DVMs) have been developed to model the ecophysiological characteristics of plant functional types in terrestrial ecosystems. They have frequently been used to answer questions pertaining to processes such as disturbance, plant succession, and community composition under historical and future climate scenarios. While DVMs have proved useful in these types of applications, it has often been questioned if additional detail, such as including plant dynamics at the species-level and/or including species-specific traits would make these models more accurate and/or broadly applicable. A sub-question associated with this issue is, 'How many species, or what degree of functional diversity, should we incorporate to sustain ecosystem function in modeled ecosystems?' Here, we focus on how the inclusion of additional plant species and trait information may strengthen dynamic vegetation modeling in applications pertaining to: (1) forage for caribou in northern Alaska, (2) above- and belowground carbon storage in the boreal forest and lake margin wetlands of interior Alaska, and (3) arctic tundra and boreal forest leaf phenology. While the inclusion of additional information generally proved valuable in these three applications, this additional detail depends on field data that may not always be available and may also result in increased computational complexity. Therefore, it is important to assess these possible limitations against the perceived need for additional plant species and trait information in the development and application of dynamic vegetation models.

  19. Nutrient fluxes from insect herbivory increase during ecosystem retrogression in boreal forest.

    PubMed

    Metcalfe, Daniel B; Crutsinger, Gregory M; Kumordzi, Bright B; Wardle, David A

    2016-01-01

    Ecological theory, developed largely from ungulates and grassland systems, predicts that herbivory accelerates nutrient cycling more in productive than unproductive systems. This prediction may be important for understanding patterns of ecosystem change over time and space, but its applicability to other ecosystems and types of herbivore remain uncertain. We estimated fluxes of nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) from herbivory of a common tree species (Betula pubescens) by a common species of herbivorous insect along a -5000-yr boreal chronosequence. Contrary to established theory, fluxes of N and P via herbivory increased along the chronosequence despite a decline in plant productivity. The herbivore-mediated N and P fluxes to the soil are comparable to the main alternative pathway for these nutrients via tree leaf litterfall. We conclude that insect herbivores can make large contributions to nutrient cycling even in unproductive systems, and influence the rate and pattern of ecosystem development, particularly in systems with low external nutrient inputs.

  20. The boreal forest as a cultural landscape.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Edward A; Miyanishi, Kiyoko

    2012-02-01

    Because of its generally low density of humans and few settlements, the circumpolar boreal forest is often viewed as an untouched wilderness. However, archeological evidence indicates that humans have inhabited the region since the continental glaciers disappeared 8,000-12,000 years ago. This paper discusses the ecological impacts that humans have had on the boreal forest ecosystem through their activities in prehistoric, historic, and recent times and argues that the boreal forest has always been a cultural landscape with a gradient of impacts both spatially and temporally. These activities include hunting, trapping, herding, agriculture, forestry, hydroelectric dam projects, oil and natural gas development, and mining. In prehistoric times, human impacts would generally have been more temporary and spatially localized. However, the megafaunal extinctions coincident with arrival of humans were very significant ecological impacts. In historic times, the spread of Europeans and their exploitation of the boreal's natural resources as well as agricultural expansion has altered the composition and continuity of the boreal forest ecosystem in North America, Fennoscandia, and Asia. Particularly over the last century, these impacts have increased significantly (e.g., some hydroelectric dams and tar sands developments that have altered and destroyed vast areas of the boreal forest). Although the atmospheric changes and resulting climatic changes due to human activities are causing the most significant changes to the high-latitude boreal forest ecosystem, any discussion of these impacts are beyond the limits of this paper and therefore are not included.

  1. Integrating modelling and remote sensing to identify ecosystem performance anomalies in the boreal forest, Yukon River Basin, Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wylie, B.K.; Zhang, L.; Bliss, Norman B.; Ji, Lei; Tieszen, Larry L.; Jolly, W. M.

    2008-01-01

    High-latitude ecosystems are exposed to more pronounced warming effects than other parts of the globe. We develop a technique to monitor ecological changes in a way that distinguishes climate influences from disturbances. In this study, we account for climatic influences on Alaskan boreal forest performance with a data-driven model. We defined ecosystem performance anomalies (EPA) using the residuals of the model and made annual maps of EPA. Most areas (88%) did not have anomalous ecosystem performance for at least 6 of 8 years between 1996 and 2004. Areas with underperforming EPA (10%) often indicate areas associated with recent fires and areas of possible insect infestation or drying soil related to permafrost degradation. Overperforming areas (2%) occurred in older fire recovery areas where increased deciduous vegetation components are expected. The EPA measure was validated with composite burn index data and Landsat vegetation indices near and within burned areas.

  2. The detection and interpretation of fire-disturbed boreal forest ecosystems in Alaska using spaceborne SAR data

    SciTech Connect

    Bourgeau-Chavez, L.L.; Kasischke, E.S.; French, N.H.F. )

    1993-06-01

    There is great interest in the ability to remotely monitor changes in boreal forest ecosystems for the understanding and balancing of the global carbon budget. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the utility of spaceborne synthetic aperture radar (SAR), particularly the ERS-1 C-VV SAR, for the detection and interpretation of fire-disturbed boreal forest ecosystems in the state of Alaska. The Alaska Fire Service has provided fire maps and records for comparison with the SAR data. Preliminary results have found that the following all have an influence on the detectability of a fire-scar (1) the time elapsed since the fire occurred, (2) the season in which the SAR data is collected, and (3) the geomorphology of the landscape in which the fire occurred. This paper demonstrates the usefulness of SAR in the estimation of the areal extent of fires. It also evaluates the potential usefulness of SAR in providing information on the spatial variability of bum intensity.

  3. Modelling the influence of ectomycorrhizal decomposition on plant nutrition and soil carbon sequestration in boreal forest ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Baskaran, Preetisri; Hyvönen, Riitta; Berglund, S Linnea; Clemmensen, Karina E; Ågren, Göran I; Lindahl, Björn D; Manzoni, Stefano

    2017-02-01

    Tree growth in boreal forests is limited by nitrogen (N) availability. Most boreal forest trees form symbiotic associations with ectomycorrhizal (ECM) fungi, which improve the uptake of inorganic N and also have the capacity to decompose soil organic matter (SOM) and to mobilize organic N ('ECM decomposition'). To study the effects of 'ECM decomposition' on ecosystem carbon (C) and N balances, we performed a sensitivity analysis on a model of C and N flows between plants, SOM, saprotrophs, ECM fungi, and inorganic N stores. The analysis indicates that C and N balances were sensitive to model parameters regulating ECM biomass and decomposition. Under low N availability, the optimal C allocation to ECM fungi, above which the symbiosis switches from mutualism to parasitism, increases with increasing relative involvement of ECM fungi in SOM decomposition. Under low N conditions, increased ECM organic N mining promotes tree growth but decreases soil C storage, leading to a negative correlation between C stores above- and below-ground. The interplay between plant production and soil C storage is sensitive to the partitioning of decomposition between ECM fungi and saprotrophs. Better understanding of interactions between functional guilds of soil fungi may significantly improve predictions of ecosystem responses to environmental change. © 2016 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2016 New Phytologist Trust.

  4. Photosynthesis and carbon isotope discrimination in boreal forest ecosystems: A comparison of functional characteristics in plants from three mature forest types

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Flanagan, Lawrence B.; Brooks, J. Renee; Ehleringer, James R.

    1997-12-01

    In this paper we compare measurements of photosynthesis and carbon isotope discrimination characteristics among plants from three mature boreal forest types (Black spruce, Jack pine, and aspen) in order to help explain variation in ecosystem-level gas exchange processes. Measurements were made at the southern study area (SSA) and northern study area (NSA) of the boreal forest in central Canada as part of the Boreal Ecosystem-Atmosphere Study (BOREAS). In both the NSA and the SSA there were significant differences in photosynthesis among the major tree species, with aspen having the highest CO2 assimilation rates and spruce the lowest. Within a species, photosynthetic rates in the SSA were approximately twice those measured in the NSA, and this was correlated with similar variations in stomatal conductance. Calculations of the ratio of leaf intercellular to ambient CO2 concentration (ci/ca) from leaf carbon isotope discrimination (Δ) values indicated a relatively low degree of stomatal limitation of photosynthesis, despite the low absolute values of stomatal conductance in these boreal tree species. Within each ecosystem, leaf Δ values were strongly correlated with life-form groups (trees, shrubs, forbs, and mosses), and these differences are maintained between years. Although we observed significant variation in the 13C content of tree rings at the old Jack pine site in the NSA during the past decade (indicating interannual variation in the degree of stomatal limitation), changes in summer precipitation and temperature accounted for only 44% of the isotopic variance. We scaled leaf-level processes to the ecosystem level through analyses of well-mixed canopy air. On average, all three forest types had similar ecosystem-level Δ values (average value ± standard deviation, 19.1‰±0.5‰), calculated from measurements of change in the concentration and carbon isotope ratio of atmospheric CO2 during a diurnal cycle within a forest canopy. However, there were

  5. Drought responses of a normally well-watered boreal forest ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sevanto, S.; Hölttä, T.; Kolari, P.; Launiainen, S.; Pumpanen, J.; Korhonen, J. F. J.; Vesala, T.; Nikinmaa, E.

    2009-04-01

    In the boreal zone water is seldom a limiting factor for plant activity. Springtime snowmelt reloads soil water reservoirs and during the short summer the amount of precipitation is usually enough to keep the ecosystem moist. In Finland, for example, the three summer months (June, July and August) account for more than 30% of the annual precipitation (700 mm/year). We have carried out ecosystem-scale atmosphere-biosphere exchange measurements at the SMEAR II station in Hyytiälä, Southern Finland since 1996. The station is surrounded by a homogenous Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) stand, which was sown after prescribed burning in 1962. The measurement set up includes an eddy-covariance system for measuring CO2, water vapor and sensible heat fluxes, soil water content measurements by the TDR-system, theta probes and equi-tensiometers, radiation measurements above and inside the canopy as well as automated chamber measurements for soil respiration and shoot-scale photosynthesis. We also measure sap flow in the trees using the Granier method and water tension inside the xylem using stem diameter variation measurements. This set-up allows also estimation of the variation in the stem hydraulic conductivity as well as stem water storage capacity. During the 11 years of measurements there has been three summers when soil water content has limited activity of the ecosystem: 1999, 2002 and 2006. In this study we compared the ecosystem responses of the dry summers to the long term averages of our site and evaluated the conditions when ecosystems-scale effects on the carbon fluxes start occur. We also studied the effects of drought on different components of ecosystem respiration and the water transport and storage capacity of the pine trees. Interestingly, drought did not reduce stem or shoot respiration significantly but the first rainfall event after the drought increased soil respiration more than photosynthesis turning the ecosystem from a sink to a source of carbon.

  6. Effect of ecosystem retrogression on stable nitrogen and carbon isotopes of plants, soils and consumer organisms in boreal forest islands.

    PubMed

    Hyodo, Fujio; Wardle, David A

    2009-07-01

    In the prolonged absence of catastrophic disturbance, ecosystem retrogression occurs, and this involves increased nutrient limitation, and reduced aboveground and belowground ecosystem processes rates. Little is known about how the nitrogen and carbon stable isotope ratios (delta(15)N and delta(13)C) of plants, soils and consumer organisms respond to retrogression in boreal forests. We investigated a 5000 year chronosequence of forested islands in the boreal zone of northern Sweden, for which the time since lightning-induced wildfire increases with decreasing island size, leading to ecosystem retrogression. For this system, tissue delta(15)N of three abundant plant species (Betula pubescens, Vaccinium myrtillus and Pleurozium schreberi) and humus all increased as retrogression proceeded. This is probably due to enhanced ecosystem inputs of N by biological fixation, and greater dependency of the plants on organic N during retrogression. The delta(13)C of B. pubescens and plant-derived humus also increased during retrogression, probably through nutrient limitation increasing plant physiological stress. Unlike the plants, delta(15)N of invertebrates (lycosid spiders and ants) did not increase during retrogression, probably because of their partial dependence on aquatic-derived prey that had a variable delta(15)N signature. The delta(13)C of the invertebrates increased as retrogression proceeded and converged towards that of an aquatic prey source (chironomid flies), suggesting increased dependence on aquatic-derived prey during retrogression. These results show that measurement of delta(15)N and delta(13)C of plants, soils, and consumers across the same environmental gradient can provide insights into environmental factors that drive both the aboveground and belowground subsystems, as well as the linkages between them.

  7. Sensitivity of Spruce/Moss Boreal Forest Net Ecosystem Productivity to Seasonal Anomalies in Weather

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Frolking, Steve

    1997-01-01

    Abstract. A process-oriented, daily time step model of a spruce/moss boreal ecosystem simulated 1994 and 1995 productivity for a Boreal Ecosystem-Atmosphere Study site near Thompson, Manitoba. Simulated black spruce net primary productivity (NPP) was 139 g C m(exp -2) in 1994 and 112 in 1995; feathermoss NPP was 13.0 g C m(exp -2) in 1994 and 9.7 in 1995; decomposition was 126 g C m(exp -2) in 1994 and 130 in 1995; net ecosystem productivity (NEP) was an uptake of 26.3 g C m(exp -2)in 1994 and 2.5 in 1995. A very dry period for the first half of the 1995 summer was the major cause of that year's lower productivity. Sensitivity simulations explored the impact of 2-month long warmer, cooler, wetter, and drier spells on ecosystem productivity. Warmer summers decreased spruce NPP, moss NPP, and NEP; cooler summers had the opposite effect. Earlier snowmelt (due to either warmer spring temperatures or reduced winter precipitation) increased moss and spruce NPP; later snowmelt had the opposite effect. The largest effect on decomposition was a 5% reduction due to a drier summer. One-month droughts (April through October) were also imposed on 1975 base year weather. Early summer droughts reduced moss annual NPP by -30-40%; summer droughts reduced spruce annual NPP by 10%; late summer droughts increased moss NPP by about 20% due to reduced respiration; May to September monthly droughts reduced heterotrophic respiration by about 10%. Variability in NEP was up to roughly +/- 35%. Finally, 1975 growing season precipitation was redistributed into frequent, small rainstorms and infrequent, large rainstorms. These changes had no effect on spruce NPP. Frequent rainstorms increased decomposition by a few percent, moss NPP by 50%, and NEP by 20%. Infrequent rainstorms decreased decomposition by 5%, moss NPP by 50% and NEP by 15%. The impact of anomalous weather patterns on productivity of this ecosystem depended on their timing during the year. Multiyear data sets are necessary to

  8. Sensitivity of Spruce/Moss Boreal Forest Net Ecosystem Productivity to Seasonal Anomalies in Weather

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Frolking, Steve

    1997-01-01

    Abstract. A process-oriented, daily time step model of a spruce/moss boreal ecosystem simulated 1994 and 1995 productivity for a Boreal Ecosystem-Atmosphere Study site near Thompson, Manitoba. Simulated black spruce net primary productivity (NPP) was 139 g C m(exp -2) in 1994 and 112 in 1995; feathermoss NPP was 13.0 g C m(exp -2) in 1994 and 9.7 in 1995; decomposition was 126 g C m(exp -2) in 1994 and 130 in 1995; net ecosystem productivity (NEP) was an uptake of 26.3 g C m(exp -2)in 1994 and 2.5 in 1995. A very dry period for the first half of the 1995 summer was the major cause of that year's lower productivity. Sensitivity simulations explored the impact of 2-month long warmer, cooler, wetter, and drier spells on ecosystem productivity. Warmer summers decreased spruce NPP, moss NPP, and NEP; cooler summers had the opposite effect. Earlier snowmelt (due to either warmer spring temperatures or reduced winter precipitation) increased moss and spruce NPP; later snowmelt had the opposite effect. The largest effect on decomposition was a 5% reduction due to a drier summer. One-month droughts (April through October) were also imposed on 1975 base year weather. Early summer droughts reduced moss annual NPP by -30-40%; summer droughts reduced spruce annual NPP by 10%; late summer droughts increased moss NPP by about 20% due to reduced respiration; May to September monthly droughts reduced heterotrophic respiration by about 10%. Variability in NEP was up to roughly +/- 35%. Finally, 1975 growing season precipitation was redistributed into frequent, small rainstorms and infrequent, large rainstorms. These changes had no effect on spruce NPP. Frequent rainstorms increased decomposition by a few percent, moss NPP by 50%, and NEP by 20%. Infrequent rainstorms decreased decomposition by 5%, moss NPP by 50% and NEP by 15%. The impact of anomalous weather patterns on productivity of this ecosystem depended on their timing during the year. Multiyear data sets are necessary to

  9. Fluxes of Dissolved Organic Carbon within Soils across a Boreal Forest Ecosystem Latitudinal Transect

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bowering, K.; Edwards, K.; Billings, S. A.; Skinner, A.; Warren, J.; Ziegler, S. E.

    2013-12-01

    The movement of dissolved organic carbon (DOC) can represent a significant flux of C within soils, and may be a critical flux of C from the terrestrial into the aquatic environment. Further, these fluxes can represent an important source of C to deeper mineral horizons where stabilization mechanisms may exist. However the quantity and quality of this C flux is largely unknown, and regulating factors that are influenced by climate and land-use change are poorly understood. This movement of C is of particular interest in the boreal forest, where large soil C stocks are vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. Laboratory experiments have demonstrated that warming, in the absence of moisture limitation, can increase the rate of production of DOC in soils directly through increased decomposition rates; however, this has been difficult to test under field conditions where seasonality, intact soil, and hydrological systems influence DOC production and movement. To assess the impact of climate warming on DOC fluxes occurring through the organic soil layer of the eastern North American boreal forest, we sampled passive lysimeters installed at 3 sites along a latitudinal transect in Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada. Separated by just over 5° latitude, mean annual temperature at these sites were 4°C, 2.1°C, and -0.5°C from lowest to highest latitude. Six lysimeters were sampled from each site and collections were made at least three times annually for two consecutive years (2011-2013). Soils tend to freeze over-winter in the high-latitude site whereas they rarely freeze in the low-latitude site. The low-latitude site also experiences more variable precipitation, with a longer snow-free season and more precipitation falling during single events. Rates of DOC flux increased with decreasing latitude, indicating greater DOC transport through soils in forests experiencing a warmer climate. DOC fluxes calculated over different seasonal time periods ranged from 4.6 to 20

  10. Impact of fire disturbance on soil thermal and carbon dynamics in Alaskan Tundra and Boreal forest ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jiang, Y.; Rastetter, E.; Shaver, G. R.; Rocha, A. V.

    2012-12-01

    In Alaska, fire disturbance is a major component influencing the soil water and energy balance in both tundra and boreal forest ecosystems. Fire-caused changes in soil environment further affect both above- and below-ground carbon cycles depending on different fire severities. Understanding the effects of fire disturbance on soil thermal change requires implicit modeling work on the post-fire soil thawing and freezing processes. In this study, we model the soil temperature profiles in multiple burned and non-burned sites using a well-developed soil thermal model which fully couples soil water and heat transport. The subsequent change in carbon dynamics is analyzed based on site level observations and simulations from the Multiple Element Limitation (MEL) model. With comparison between burned and non-burned sites, we compare and contrast fire effects on soil thermal and carbon dynamics in continuous permafrost (Anaktuvik fire in north slope), discontinuous permafrost (Erickson Creek fire at Hess Creek) and non-permafrost zone (Delta Junction fire in interior Alaska). Then we check the post-fire recovery of soil temperature profiles at sites with different fire severities in both tundra and boreal forest fire areas. We further project the future changes in soil thermal and carbon dynamics using projected climate data from Scenarios Network for Alaska & Arctic Planning (SNAP). This study provides information to improve the understanding of fire disturbance on soil thermal and carbon dynamics and the consequent response under a warming climate.

  11. The likely impact of elevated [CO2], nitrogen deposition, increased temperature and management on carbon sequestration in temperate and boreal forest ecosystems: a literature review

    Treesearch

    Riitta Hyvönen; Göran I. Ågren; Sune Linder; Tryggve Persson; M. Francesca Cotrufo; Alf Ekblad; Michael Freeman; Achim Grelle; Ivan A. Janssens; Paul G. Jarvis; Seppo Kellomäki; Anders Lindroth; Denis Loustau; Tomas Lundmark; Richard J. Norby; Ram Oren; Kim Pilegaard; Michael G. Ryan; Bjarni D. Sigurdsson; Monika Strömgren; Marcel van Oijen; Göran Wallin

    2007-01-01

    Temperate and boreal forest ecosystems contain a large part of the carbon stored on land, in the form of both biomass and soil organic matter. Increasing atmospheric [CO2], increasing temperature, elevated nitrogen deposition and intensified management will change this C store. Well documented single-factor responses of net primary production are: higher photosynthetic...

  12. The role of novel forest ecosystems in the conservation of wood-inhabiting fungi in boreal broadleaved forests.

    PubMed

    Juutilainen, Katja; Mönkkönen, Mikko; Kotiranta, Heikki; Halme, Panu

    2016-10-01

    The increasing human impact on the earth's biosphere is inflicting changes at all spatial scales. As well as deterioration and fragmentation of natural biological systems, these changes also led to other, unprecedented effects and emergence of novel habitats. In boreal zone, intensive forest management has negatively impacted a multitude of deadwood-associated species. This is especially alarming given the important role wood-inhabiting fungi have in the natural decay processes. In the boreal zone, natural broad-leaved-dominated, herb-rich forests are threatened habitats which have high wood-inhabiting fungal species richness. Fungal diversity in other broadleaved forest habitat types is poorly known. Traditional wood pastures and man-made afforested fields are novel habitats that could potentially be important for wood-inhabiting fungi. This study compares species richness and fungal community composition across the aforementioned habitat types, based on data collected for wood-inhabiting fungi occupying all deadwood diameter fractions. Corticioid and polyporoid fungi were surveyed from 67 130 deadwood particles in four natural herb-rich forests, four birch-dominated wood pastures, and four birch-dominated afforested field sites in central Finland. As predicted, natural herb-rich forests were the most species-rich habitat. However, afforested fields also had considerably higher overall species richness than wood pastures. Many rare or rarely collected species were detected in each forest type. Finally, fungal community composition showed some divergence not only among the different habitat types, but also among deadwood diameter fractions. Synthesis and applications: In order to maintain biodiversity at both local and regional scales, conserving threatened natural habitat types and managing traditional landscapes is essential. Man-made secondary woody habitats could provide the necessary resources and serve as surrogate habitats for many broadleaved deadwood

  13. Response of photosynthetic carbon gain to ecosystem retrogression of vascular plants and mosses in the boreal forest.

    PubMed

    Bansal, Sheel; Nilsson, Marie-Charlotte; Wardle, David A

    2012-07-01

    In the long-term absence of rejuvenating disturbances, forest succession frequently proceeds from a maximal biomass phase to a retrogressive phase characterized by reduced nutrient availability [notably nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P)] and net primary productivity. Few studies have considered how retrogression induces changes in ecophysiological responses associated with photosynthetic carbon (C) gain, and only for trees. We tested the hypothesis that retrogression would negatively impact photosynthetic C gain of four contrasting species, and that this impact would be greater for vascular plants (i.e., trees and shrubs) than for non-vascular plants (i.e., mosses). We used a 5,000-year-old chronosequence of forested islands in Sweden, where retrogression occurs in the long-term absence of lightning-ignited wildfires. Despite fundamental differences in plant form and ecological niche among species, vascular plants and mosses showed similar ecophysiological responses to retrogression. The most common effects of retrogression were reductions in photosynthesis and respiration per unit foliar N, increases in foliar N, δ(13)C and δ(15)N, and decreases in specific leaf areas. In contrast, photosynthesis per unit mass or area generally did not change along the chronosequence, but did vary many-fold between vascular plants and mosses. The consistent increases in foliar N without corresponding increases in mass- or area-based photosynthesis suggest that other factor(s), such as P co-limitation, light conditions or water availability, may co-regulate C gain in retrogressive boreal forests. Against our predictions, traits of mosses associated with C and N were generally highly responsive to retrogression, which has implications for how mosses influence ecosystem processes in boreal forests.

  14. Enabling intelligent copernicus services for carbon and water balance modeling of boreal forest ecosystems - North State

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Häme, Tuomas; Mutanen, Teemu; Rauste, Yrjö; Antropov, Oleg; Molinier, Matthieu; Quegan, Shaun; Kantzas, Euripides; Mäkelä, Annikki; Minunno, Francesco; Atli Benediktsson, Jon; Falco, Nicola; Arnason, Kolbeinn; Storvold, Rune; Haarpaintner, Jörg; Elsakov, Vladimir; Rasinmäki, Jussi

    2015-04-01

    The objective of project North State, funded by Framework Program 7 of the European Union, is to develop innovative data fusion methods that exploit the new generation of multi-source data from Sentinels and other satellites in an intelligent, self-learning framework. The remote sensing outputs are interfaced with state-of-the-art carbon and water flux models for monitoring the fluxes over boreal Europe to reduce current large uncertainties. This will provide a paradigm for the development of products for future Copernicus services. The models to be interfaced are a dynamic vegetation model and a light use efficiency model. We have identified four groups of variables that will be estimated with remote sensed data: land cover variables, forest characteristics, vegetation activity, and hydrological variables. The estimates will be used as model inputs and to validate the model outputs. The earth observation variables are computed as automatically as possible, with an objective to completely automatic estimation. North State has two sites for intensive studies in southern and northern Finland, respectively, one in Iceland and one in state Komi of Russia. Additionally, the model input variables will be estimated and models applied over European boreal and sub-arctic region from Ural Mountains to Iceland. The accuracy assessment of the earth observation variables will follow statistical sampling design. Model output predictions are compared to earth observation variables. Also flux tower measurements are applied in the model assessment. In the paper, results of hyperspectral, Sentinel-1, and Landsat data and their use in the models is presented. Also an example of a completely automatic land cover class prediction is reported.

  15. Interannual Variability In the Atmospheric CO2 Rectification Over Boreal Forests Based On A Coupled Ecosystem-Atmosphere Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, B.; Chen, J. M.; Worthy, D.

    2004-05-01

    Ecosystem CO2 exchange and the planetary boundary layer (PBL) are correlated diurnally and seasonally. The simulation of this atmospheric rectifier effect is important in understanding the global CO2 distribution pattern. A 12-year (1990-1996, 1999-2003), continuous CO2 measurement record from Fraserdale, Ontario (located ~150 km north of Timmons), along with a coupled Vertical Diffusion Scheme (VDS) and ecosystem model (Boreal Ecosystem Productivity Simulator, BEPS), is used to investigate the interannual variability in this effect over a boreal forest region. The coupled model performed well in simulating CO2 vertical diffusion processes. Simulated annual atmospheric rectifier effects, (including seasonal and diurnal), quantified as the variation in the mean CO2 concentration from the surface to the top of the PBL, varied from 2.8 to 4.1 ppm, even though the modeled seasonal variations in the PBL depth were similar throughout the 12-year period. The differences in the interannual rectifier effect primarily resulted from changes in the biospheric CO2 uptake and heterotrophic respiration. Correlations in the year-to year variations of the CO2 rectification were found with mean annual air temperatures, simulated gross primary productivity (GPP) and heterotrophic respiration (Rh) (r2=0.5, 0.46, 0.42, respectively). A small increasing trend in the CO2 rectification was also observed. The year-to-year variation in the vertical distribution of the monthly mean CO2 mixing ratios (reflecting differences in the diurnal rectifier effect) was related to interannual climate variability, however, the seasonal rectifier effects were found to be more sensitive to climate variability than the diurnal rectifier effects.

  16. Boreal forest health and global change.

    PubMed

    Gauthier, S; Bernier, P; Kuuluvainen, T; Shvidenko, A Z; Schepaschenko, D G

    2015-08-21

    The boreal forest, one of the largest biomes on Earth, provides ecosystem services that benefit society at levels ranging from local to global. Currently, about two-thirds of the area covered by this biome is under some form of management, mostly for wood production. Services such as climate regulation are also provided by both the unmanaged and managed boreal forests. Although most of the boreal forests have retained the resilience to cope with current disturbances, projected environmental changes of unprecedented speed and amplitude pose a substantial threat to their health. Management options to reduce these threats are available and could be implemented, but economic incentives and a greater focus on the boreal biome in international fora are needed to support further adaptation and mitigation actions.

  17. Biomass burning in boreal forests and peatlands: Effects on ecosystem carbon losses and soil carbon stabilization as black carbon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Turetsky, M. R.; Kane, E. S.; Benscoter, B.

    2011-12-01

    Climate change has increased both annual area burned and the severity of biomass combustion in some boreal regions. For example, there has been a four-fold increase in late season fires in boreal Alaska over the last decade relative to the previous 50 years. Such changes in the fire regime are expected to stimulate ecosystem carbon losses through fuel combustion, reduced primary production, and increased decomposition. However, biomass burning also will influence the accumulation of black carbon in soils, which could promote long-term soil carbon sequestration. Variations in slope and aspect regulate soil temperatures and drainage conditions, and affect the development of permafrost and thick peat layers. Wet soil conditions in peatlands and permafrost forests often inhibit combustion during wildfires, leading to strong positive correlations between pre- and post- fire organic soil thickness that persist through multiple fire cycles. However, burning can occur in poorly drained ecosystems through smouldering combustion, which has implications for emission ratios of CO2:CH4:CO as well as black carbon formation. Our studies of combustion severity and black carbon concentrations in boreal soils show a negative relationship between concentrations of black carbon and organic carbon in soils post-fire. Relative to well drained stands, poorly drained sites with thick peat layers (such as north-facing stands) had less severe burning and low concentrations of black carbon in mineral soils post-fire. Conversely, drier forests lost a greater proportion of their organic soils during combustion but retained larger black carbon stocks following burning. Overall, we have quantified greater black carbon concentrations in surface mineral soil horizons than in organic soil horizons. This is surprising given that wildfires typically do not consume the entire organic soil layer in boreal forests, and could be indicative of the vulnerability of black carbon formed in organic horizons

  18. Effects of Conversion from Boreal Forest to Arctic Steppe on Soil Communities and Ecosystem Carbon Pools

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Han, P. D.; Natali, S.; Schade, J. D.; Zimov, N.; Zimov, S. A.

    2014-12-01

    The end of the Pleistocene marked the extinction of a great variety of arctic megafauna, which, in part, led to the conversion of arctic grasslands to modern Siberian larch forest. This shift may have increased the vulnerability of permafrost to thawing because of changes driven by the vegetation shift; the higher albedo of grassland and low insulation of snow trampled by animals may have decreased soil temperatures and reduced ground thaw in the grassland ecosystem, resulting in protection of organic carbon in thawed soil and permafrost. To test these hypothesized impacts of arctic megafauna, we examined an experimental reintroduction of large mammals in northeast Siberia, initiated in 1988. Pleistocene Park now contains 23 horses, three musk ox, one bison, and several moose in addition to the native fauna. The park is 16 square km with a smaller enclosure (< 1 km) where animals spend most of their time and our study was focused. We measured carbon-pools in forested sites (where scat surveys showed low animal use), and grassy sites (which showed higher use), within the park boundaries. We also measured thaw depth and documented the soil invertebrate communities in each ecosystem. There was a substantial difference in number of invertebrates per kg of organic soil between the forest (600 ± 250) and grassland (300 ± 250), though these differences were not statistically significant they suggest faster nutrient turnover in the forest or a greater proportion of decomposition by invertebrates than other decomposers. While thaw depth was deeper in the grassland (60 ± 4 cm) than in the forest (40 ± 6 cm), we did not detect differences in organic layer depth or percent organic matter between grassland and forest. However, soil in the grassland had higher bulk density, and higher carbon stocks in the organic and mineral soil layers. Although deeper thaw depth in the grassland suggests that more carbon is available to microbial decomposers, ongoing temperature monitoring

  19. Annual carbon cost of autotrophic respiration in boreal forest ecosystems in relation to species and climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ryan, Michael G.; Lavigne, Michael B.; Gower, Stith T.

    1997-12-01

    Autotrophic respiration (Ra) in forest ecosystems can be >50% of the carbon fixed in photosynthesis and may regulate productivity and carbon storage in forest ecosystems, because Ra increases with temperature. We estimated annual Ra from chamber measurements in aspen, black spruce, and jack pine forests in Canada for 1994. Mean foliage respiration at 10°C for expanded leaves was 0.21-0.95 μmol m-2 (leaf surface) s-1 for all species and differed little from May to September. Wood respiration at 15°C (0.2-1 μmol m-2 (stem surface) s-1 for all species) was strongly seasonal, with high rates in midsummer that coincided with wood growth. Fine root respiration at 10°C was 2.5-7.7 μmol kg-1 s-1 for all species and declined throughout the growing season for the conifers. Annual costs of Ra for foliage, wood, and roots (overstory and understory) were 490, 610, and 450 g C m-2 (ground) yr-1 for aspen, black spruce, and jack pine (old) in northern Manitoba and 600, 480, and 310 g C m-2 yr-1 for aspen, black spruce, and jack pine (old) in central Saskatchewan. Carbon use efficiency (CUE), the ratio of net production to production plus Ra, averaged 0.44, 0.34, and 0.39 for aspen, black spruce, and jack pine (old) for all tissues and 0.61, 0.36, and 0.44 for aboveground tissues. Differences in CUE between the northern and the southern sites were small for all species, and CUE did not vary with stand biomass. Species differences in CUE suggest that models assuming a constant CUE across species may poorly estimate production and carbon balance for any given site.

  20. Functional Responses and Resilience of Boreal Forest Ecosystem after Reduction of Deer Density

    PubMed Central

    Bachand, Marianne; Pellerin, Stéphanie; Moretti, Marco; Aubin, Isabelle; Tremblay, Jean-Pierre; Côté, Steeve D.; Poulin, Monique

    2014-01-01

    The functional trait-based approach is increasingly used to predict responses of ecological communities to disturbances, but most studies target a single taxonomic group. Here, we assessed the resilience of a forest ecosystem to an overabundant herbivore population by assessing changes in 19 functional traits for plant, 13 traits for ground beetle and 16 traits for songbird communities after six years of controlled browsing on Anticosti Island (Quebec, Canada). Our results indicated that plants were more responsive to 6 years of reduced browsing pressure than ground beetles and songbirds. However, co-inertia analysis revealed that ground beetle communities responded in a similar way than plant communities with stronger relationships between plant and ground beetle traits at reduced deer density, a pattern not detected between plant and songbird. High deer density favored plants species that reproduce vegetatively and with abiotic pollination and seed dispersal, traits implying little interaction with animal. On the other hand, traits found at reduced deer density mostly involved trophic interaction. For example, plants in this treatment had fleshy fruits and large seeds dispersed by birds or other animals whereas ground beetle species were carnivorous. Overall, our results suggest that plant communities recovered some functional components to overabundant herbivore populations, since most traits associated with undisturbed forests were reestablished after six years of deer reduction. The re-establishment of functional plant communities with traits involving trophic interaction induces changes in the ground-beetle trait community, but forest structure remains likely insufficiently heterogeneous to shift the songbird trait community within six years. PMID:24587362

  1. Functional responses and resilience of boreal forest ecosystem after reduction of deer density.

    PubMed

    Bachand, Marianne; Pellerin, Stéphanie; Moretti, Marco; Aubin, Isabelle; Tremblay, Jean-Pierre; Côté, Steeve D; Poulin, Monique

    2014-01-01

    The functional trait-based approach is increasingly used to predict responses of ecological communities to disturbances, but most studies target a single taxonomic group. Here, we assessed the resilience of a forest ecosystem to an overabundant herbivore population by assessing changes in 19 functional traits for plant, 13 traits for ground beetle and 16 traits for songbird communities after six years of controlled browsing on Anticosti Island (Quebec, Canada). Our results indicated that plants were more responsive to 6 years of reduced browsing pressure than ground beetles and songbirds. However, co-inertia analysis revealed that ground beetle communities responded in a similar way than plant communities with stronger relationships between plant and ground beetle traits at reduced deer density, a pattern not detected between plant and songbird. High deer density favored plants species that reproduce vegetatively and with abiotic pollination and seed dispersal, traits implying little interaction with animal. On the other hand, traits found at reduced deer density mostly involved trophic interaction. For example, plants in this treatment had fleshy fruits and large seeds dispersed by birds or other animals whereas ground beetle species were carnivorous. Overall, our results suggest that plant communities recovered some functional components to overabundant herbivore populations, since most traits associated with undisturbed forests were reestablished after six years of deer reduction. The re-establishment of functional plant communities with traits involving trophic interaction induces changes in the ground-beetle trait community, but forest structure remains likely insufficiently heterogeneous to shift the songbird trait community within six years.

  2. Toward Improved Parameterization of a Meso-Scale Hydrologic Model in a Discontinuous Permafrost, Boreal Forest Ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Endalamaw, A. M.; Bolton, W. R.; Young, J. M.; Morton, D.; Hinzman, L. D.

    2013-12-01

    The sub-arctic environment can be characterized as being located in the zone of discontinuous permafrost. Although the distribution of permafrost is site specific, it dominates many of the hydrologic and ecologic responses and functions including vegetation distribution, stream flow, soil moisture, and storage processes. In this region, the boundaries that separate the major ecosystem types (deciduous dominated and coniferous dominated ecosystems) as well as permafrost (permafrost verses non-permafrost) occur over very short spatial scales. One of the goals of this research project is to improve parameterizations of meso-scale hydrologic models in this environment. Using the Caribou-Poker Creeks Research Watershed (CPCRW) as the test area, simulations of the headwater catchments of varying permafrost and vegetation distributions were performed. CPCRW, located approximately 50 km northeast of Fairbanks, Alaska, is located within the zone of discontinuous permafrost and the boreal forest ecosystem. The Variable Infiltration Capacity (VIC) model was selected as the hydrologic model. In CPCRW, permafrost and coniferous vegetation is generally found on north facing slopes and valley bottoms. Permafrost free soils and deciduous vegetation is generally found on south facing slopes. In this study, hydrologic simulations using fine scale vegetation and soil parameterizations - based upon slope and aspect analysis at a 50 meter resolution - were conducted. Simulations were also conducted using downscaled vegetation from the Scenarios Network for Alaska and Arctic Planning (SNAP) (1 km resolution) and soil data sets from the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) (approximately 9 km resolution). Preliminary simulation results show that soil and vegetation parameterizations based upon fine scale slope/aspect analysis increases the R2 values (0.5 to 0.65 in the high permafrost (53%) basin; 0.43 to 0.56 in the low permafrost (2%) basin) relative to parameterization based on

  3. Effects of Disturbances on Vegetation Composition and Permafrost Thaw in Boreal Forests and Tundra Ecosystems of the Siberian Arctic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ramos, E.; Alexander, H. D.; Natali, S.

    2014-12-01

    In Arctic ecosystems, climate-driven changes to the thermal regime of permafrost soils have the potential to create surface disturbances that influence vegetation dynamics and underlying soil properties. Disturbance-mediated changes in vegetation are important because vegetation and the accumulation of soil organic matter drive ecosystem carbon (C) dynamics and contribute to the insulation of soils and protection of permafrost from thaw. We examined the effect of two disturbance types—thermokarsts and frost boils—to determine disturbance effects on the vegetation community and soil properties in northeast Siberia. In summer 2014, we measured vegetation cover, soil moisture, soil temperature, and thaw depth in two thermokarst sites within boreal forests, two frost boil sites in tundra, and in adjacent undisturbed sites within both ecosystems. Both thermokarst and frost boils resulted in decreased vegetation cover and greater exposure of mineral soils (10-40% bare soils vs. 0% in undisturbed), and consequently, 2-3 times higher soil temperature and deeper thaw depth. Compared to undisturbed areas, soil moisture was 3-4 times higher in thermokarst areas but 1.2-2 times lower in frost boil areas, which reflected differences in microtopography between these two disturbance types. In both thermokarst and frost boil disturbed areas, deciduous and evergreen shrubs covered only 5 and 10%, respectively, compared to approximately 10 and 20%, respectively, in undisturbed areas. In general, graminoids were substantially more abundant (2-20 times) in disturbed areas than in those undisturbed. These results highlight important linkages between disturbances, vegetation communities, and permafrost soils, and contribute to our understanding of how changes in arctic vegetation dynamics as direct and/or indirect consequences of climate change have the potential to impact permafrost C pools.

  4. Impact of wildfire on stream nutrient chemistry and ecosystem metabolism in boreal forest catchments of interior Alaska

    Treesearch

    Emma F. Betts; Jeremy B. Jones

    2009-01-01

    With climatic warming, wildfire occurrence is increasing in the boreal forest of interior Alaska. Loss of catchment vegetation during fire can impact streams directly through altered solute and debris inputs and changed light and temperature regimes. Over longer time scales, fire can accelerate permafrost degradation, altering catchment hydrology and stream nutrient...

  5. Multi-scale influence of vapor pressure deficit on fire ignition and spread in boreal forest ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sedano, F.; Randerson, J. T.

    2014-07-01

    Climate-driven changes in the fire regime within boreal forest ecosystems are likely to have important effects on carbon cycling and species composition. In the context of improving fire management options and developing more realistic scenarios of future change, it is important to understand how meteorology regulates different aspects of fire dynamics, including ignition, daily fire spread, and cumulative annual burned area. Here we combined Moderate-Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) active fires (MCD14ML), MODIS imagery (MOD13A1) and ancillary historic fire perimeter information to produce a data set of daily fire spread maps for Alaska during 2002-2011. This approach provided a spatial and temporally continuous representation of fire progression and a precise identification of ignition and extinction locations and dates for each wildfire. The fire-spread maps were analyzed with daily vapor pressure deficit (VPD) observations from the North American Regional Reanalysis (NARR) and lightning strikes from the Alaska Lightning Detection Network (ALDN). We found a significant relationship between daily VPD and likelihood that a lightning strike would develop into a fire ignition. In the first week after ignition, above average VPD increased the probability that fires would grow to large or very large sizes. Strong relationships also were identified between VPD and burned area at several levels of temporal and spatial aggregation. As a consequence of regional coherence in meteorology, ignition, daily fire spread, and fire extinction events were often synchronized across different fires in interior Alaska. At a regional scale, the sum of positive VPD anomalies during the fire season was positively correlated with annual burned area during the NARR era (1979-2011; R2 = 0.45). Some of the largest fires we mapped had slow initial growth, indicating opportunities may exist for suppression efforts to adaptively manage these forests for climate change. The results

  6. Modeling forest development after fire disturbance: Climate, soil organic layer, and nitrogen jointly affect forest canopy species and long-term ecosystem carbon accumulation in the North American boreal forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trugman, A. T.; Fenton, N.; Bergeron, Y.; Xu, X.; Welp, L.; Medvigy, D.

    2015-12-01

    Soil organic layer dynamics strongly affect boreal forest development after fire. Field studies show that soil organic layer thickness exerts a species-specific control on propagule establishment in the North American boreal forest. On organic soils thicker than a few centimeters, all propagules are less able to recruit, but broadleaf trees recruit less effectively than needleleaf trees. In turn, forest growth controls organic layer accumulation through modulating litter input and litter quality. These dynamics have not been fully incorporated into models, but may be essential for accurate projections of ecosystem carbon storage. Here, we develop a data-constrained model for understanding boreal forest development after fire. We update the ED2 model to include new aspen and black spruce species-types, species-specific propagule survivorship dependent on soil organic layer depth, species-specific litter decay rates, dynamically accumulating moss and soil organic layers, and nitrogen fixation by cyanobacteria associated with moss. The model is validated against diverse observations ranging from monthly to centennial timescales and spanning a climate gradient in Alaska, central Canada, and Quebec. We then quantify differences in forest development that result from changes in organic layer accumulation, temperature, and nitrogen. We find that (1) the model accurately reproduces a range of observations throughout the North American boreal forest; (2) the presence of a thick organic layer results in decreased decomposition and decreased aboveground productivity, effects that can increase or decrease ecosystem carbon uptake depending on location-specific attributes; (3) with a mean warming of 4°C, some forests switch from undergoing succession to needleleaf forests to recruiting multiple cohorts of broadleaf trees, decreasing ecosystem accumulation by ~30% after 300 years; (4) the availability of nitrogen regulates successional dynamics such than broadleaf species are

  7. Response of net ecosystem CO2 exchange and evapotranspiration of boreal forest ecosystems to projected future climate changes: results of a modeling study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Olchev, Alexander; Kurbatova, Julia

    2014-05-01

    It is presented the modeling results describing the possible response of net ecosystem exchange of CO2 (NEE), gross (GPP) and net (NPP) primary production, as well as evapotranspiration (ET) of spruce forest ecosystems situated at central part of European part of Russia at the southern boundary of boreal forest community to projected future changes of climatic conditions and forest species composition. A process-based MixFor-SVAT model (Olchev et al 2002, 2008, 2009) has been used to describe the CO2 and H2O fluxes under present and projected future climate conditions. The main advantage of MixFor-SVAT is its ability not only to describe seasonal and daily dynamics of total CO2 and H2O fluxes at an ecosystem level, but also to adequately estimate the contributions of soil, forest understorey, and various tree species in overstorey into total ecosystem fluxes taking into account their individual responses to changes in environmental conditions as well as the differences in structure and biophysical properties. Results of modeling experiments showed that projected changes of climate conditions (moderate scenario A1B IPCC) and forest species composition at the end of 21 century can lead to small increase of annual evapotranspiration as well as to growth of NEE, GPP and NPP of the forests in case if the projected increase in temperature and elevated CO2 in the atmosphere in future will be strictly balanced with growth of available nutrients and water in plant and soil. It is obvious that any deficit of e.g. nitrogen in leaves (due to reduced transpiration, nitrogen availability in soil, etc.) may lead to decreases in the photosynthesis and respiration rates of trees and, as a consequence, to decreases in the GPP and NEE of entire forest ecosystem. Conducted modeling experiments have demonstrated that a 20% reduction of available nitrogen in tree leaves in a monospesific spruce forest stand may result in a 14% decrease in NEE, a 8% decrease in NPP, and a 4% decrease in

  8. The importance of phenology for the evaluation of impact of climate change on growth of boreal, temperate and Mediterranean forests ecosystems: an overview.

    PubMed

    Kramer, K; Leinonen, I; Loustau, D

    2000-08-01

    An overview is presented of the phenological models relevant for boreal coniferous, temperate-zone deciduous and Mediterranean coniferous forest ecosystems. The phenology of the boreal forests is mainly driven by temperature, affecting the timing of the start of the growing season and thereby its duration, and the level of frost hardiness and thereby the reduction of foliage area and photosynthetic capacity by severe frost events. The phenology of temperate-zone forests is also mainly driven by temperature. Since temperate-zone forests are mostly mixed-species deciduous forests, differences in phenological response may affect competition between tree species. The phenology of Mediterranean coniferous forests is mainly driven by water availability, affecting the development of leaf area, rather than the timing of phenological events. These phenological models were subsequently coupled to the process-based forest model FORGRO to evaluate the effect of different climate change scenarios on growth. The results indicate that the phenology of each of the forest types significantly affects the growth response to a given climate change scenario. The absolute responses presented in this study should, however, be used with caution as there are still uncertainties in the phenological models, the growth models, the parameter values obtained and the climate change scenarios used. Future research should attempt to reduce these uncertainties. It is recommended that phenological models that describe the mechanisms by which seasonality in climatic drivers affects the phenological aspects of trees should be developed and carefully tested. Only by using such models may we make an assessment of the impact of climate change on the functioning and productivity of different forest ecosystems.

  9. Modeling effects of climate change on spruce-fir forest ecosystems: Changes in the montane ecotone between boreal and temperate forests in the Green Mountains, U.S.A, from forest edge detection in Landsat TM imagery,1989 to 2011

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Foster, J. R.; D'Amato, A. W.

    2014-12-01

    Climate change is projected to affect the integrity of forested ecosystems worldwide. One forest type expected to be severely impacted is the eastern spruce-fir forest, because it is already at the extreme elevational and latitudinal limits of its range within the northern United States. Large-scale bioclimactic models predict declining habitat suitability for spruce and fir species, while causing drought and thermal stress on remnant trees. As rising temperatures reduce or eliminate habitat throughout much of the current spruce-fir range, growth and regeneration of hardwood forests or more southerly conifers will be favored. The ecotone between northern hardwood forests and montane boreal forests was recently reported to have shifted approximately 100 m upslope over the last 20-40 years in the Green Mountains of Vermont, U.S.A. The research behind this finding relied on long-term forest plot data and change analysis of narrow transects (6 m width) on aerial photos and SPOT imagery. In the White Mountains of New Hampshire, U.S.A., research using vegetation indices from Landsat data reported a conflicting finding; that coniferous vegetation was increasing downslope of the existing ecotone. We carefully matched and topographically corrected Landsat images from 1989 through 2011 to comprehensively map the boreal-temperate forest ecotone throughout the Green Mountains in Vermont, U.S.A. We used edge detection and linear mixed models to evaluate whether the ecotone changed in elevation over 20 years, and whether rates of change varied with Latitude or aspect. We found that the elevation of the boreal-temperate forest ecotone, and changes in its location over 20 years, were more variable than reported in recent studies. While the ecotone moved to higher elevations in some locations at reported rates, these rates were at the tales of the distribution of elevational change. Other locations showed downward movement of the ecotone, while for the majority of sites, no change

  10. The likely impact of elevated [CO2], nitrogen deposition, increased temperature, and management on carbon sequestration in temperate and boreal forest ecosystems. A literature review

    SciTech Connect

    Norby, Richard J

    2007-01-01

    Temperate and Boreal forest ecosystems contain a large part of the carbon stored on land, both in the form of biomass and soil organic matter. Increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration, increasing temperatures, elevated nitrogen deposition, and intensified management will change this carbon store. We review current literature and conclude that northern forests will acquire extra carbon as a result of an increasing length of the growing season (the main temperature response), higher leaf area index (the main nitrogen deposition response) and higher photosynthetic rate (the main [CO2] response). Simultaneously, forests will lose soil carbon as a result of higher temperatures, but nitrogen deposition may slow down soil carbon turnover. The prediction of the net effect is complicated because of a multitude of interactions between variables at different scales. Management has, however, a considerable potential for controlling the carbon store.

  11. Carbon Isotope Composition of Ecosystem Respired Carbon Dioxide in Three Boreal Forest Ecosystems: Measurements and Model Calculations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cai, T.; Flanagan, L. B.

    2007-12-01

    We conducted measurements of seasonal and inter-annual variation in the carbon isotope composition of ecosystem respired CO2 (δR) in aspen, black spruce and jack pine dominated ecosystems in northern Saskatchewan during 2004-2006 as part of the Fluxnet-Canada Research Network. All three sites showed relatively small variation (approximately -26 to -29 per mil) in δR values during the entire study. The measurements were strongly correlated with modeled δ13C values of ecosystem respired CO2. The model calculated leaf CO2 assimilation, stomatal conductance and chloroplast CO2 concentration separately for sunlit and shaded leaves within multiple canopy layers, and, therefore, allowed us to estimate canopy photosynthetic 13C discrimination. All three sites showed variation in canopy 13C discrimination in response to environmental conditions in a manner consistent with well-known leaf-level studies. Specifically, 13C discrimination was positively correlated with soil moisture and negatively correlated with photon flux density, air temperature and vapor pressure deficit. As a consequence a strong diurnal pattern was observed for 13C discrimination. The measured δR values also varied in response to environmental conditions in a manner consistent with well-known leaf-level studies of photosynthetic 13C discrimination, but with a dampened response caused by the contribution of heterotrophic respiration, which had a constant δ13C value. These results indicate that the stable isotope composition of respired CO2 is a useful ecosystem-scale tool to study constraints to photosynthesis and acclimation of ecosystems to environmental stress.

  12. [A new source of methane in boreal forests].

    PubMed

    Mukhin, V A; Voronin, P Iu

    2008-01-01

    Methane was found among the gases evolved during natural wood decay caused by bracket fungi in boreal forests. Methane was detected both in decaying wood and fungal fruiting bodies. A scheme of symbiotic association of wood-degrading fungi and anaerobic microorganisms providing the methanogenesis in the wood was proposed. The scale of mycogenic methane emission has to be consistent with the huge volume of decaying wood in boreal forest ecosystems.

  13. Collected Data of The Boreal Ecosystem and Atmosphere Study (BOREAS)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Newcomer, J. (Editor); Landis, D. (Editor); Conrad, S. (Editor); Curd, S. (Editor); Huemmrich, K. (Editor); Knapp, D. (Editor); Morrell, A. (Editor); Nickerson, J. (Editor); Papagno, A. (Editor); Rinker, D. (Editor)

    2000-01-01

    The Boreal Ecosystem-Atmosphere Study (BOREAS) was a large-scale international interdisciplinary climate-ecosystem interaction experiment in the northern boreal forests of Canada. Its goal was to improve our understanding of the boreal forests -- how they interact with the atmosphere, how much CO2 they can store, and how climate change will affect them. BOREAS wanted to learn to use satellite data to monitor the forests, and to improve computer simulation and weather models so scientists can anticipate the effects of global change. This BOREAS CD-ROM set is a set of 12 CD-ROMs containing the finalized point data sets and compressed image data from the BOREAS Project. All point data are stored in ASCII text files, and all image and GIS products are stored as binary images, compressed using GZip. Additional descriptions of the various data sets on this CD-ROM are available in other documents in the BOREAS series.

  14. Collected Data of The Boreal Ecosystem and Atmosphere Study (BOREAS)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Newcomer, J. (Editor); Landis, D. (Editor); Conrad, S. (Editor); Curd, S. (Editor); Huemmrich, K. (Editor); Knapp, D. (Editor); Morrell, A. (Editor); Nickerson, J. (Editor); Papagno, A. (Editor); Rinker, D. (Editor)

    2000-01-01

    The Boreal Ecosystem-Atmosphere Study (BOREAS) was a large-scale international interdisciplinary climate-ecosystem interaction experiment in the northern boreal forests of Canada. Its goal was to improve our understanding of the boreal forests -- how they interact with the atmosphere, how much CO2 they can store, and how climate change will affect them. BOREAS wanted to learn to use satellite data to monitor the forests, and to improve computer simulation and weather models so scientists can anticipate the effects of global change. This BOREAS CD-ROM set is a set of 12 CD-ROMs containing the finalized point data sets and compressed image data from the BOREAS Project. All point data are stored in ASCII text files, and all image and GIS products are stored as binary images, compressed using GZip. Additional descriptions of the various data sets on this CD-ROM are available in other documents in the BOREAS series.

  15. Boreal Forest Fire Cools Climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Randerson, J. T.; Liu, H.; Flanner, M.; Chambers, S. D.; Harden, J. W.; Hess, P. G.; Jin, Y.; Mack, M. C.; Pfister, G.; Schuur, E. A.; Treseder, K. K.; Welp, L. R.; Zender, C. S.

    2005-12-01

    We report measurements, modeling, and analysis of carbon and energy fluxes from a boreal forest fire that occurred in interior Alaska during 1999. In the first year after the fire, ozone production, atmospheric aerosol loading, greenhouse gas emissions, soot deposition, and decreases in summer albedo contributed to a positive annual radiative forcing (RF). These effects were partly offset by an increase in fall, winter, and spring albedo from reduced canopy cover and increased exposure of snow-covered surfaces. The atmospheric lifetime of aerosols and ozone and are relatively short (days to months). The radiative effects of soot on snow are also attenuated rapidly from the deposition of fresh snow. As a result, a year after the fire, only two classes of RF mechanisms remained: greenhouse gas emissions and post-fire changes in surface albedo. Summer albedo increased rapidly in subsequent years and was substantially higher than unburned control areas (by more than 0.03) after 4 years as a result of grass and shrub establishment. Satellite measurements from MODIS of other interior Alaska burn scars provided evidence that elevated levels of spring and summer albedo (relative to unburned control areas) persisted for at least 4 decades after fire. In parallel, our chamber, eddy covariance, and biomass measurements indicated that the post-fire ecosystems switch from a source to a sink within the first decade. Taken together, the extended period of increased spring and summer albedo and carbon uptake of intermediate-aged stands appears to more than offset the initial warming pulse caused by fire emissions, when compared using the RF concept. This result suggests that management of forests in northern countries to suppress fire and preserve carbon sinks may have the opposite effect on climate as that intended.

  16. Aspects of Boreal Forest Hydrology: From Stand to Watershed

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nijssen, B.

    2000-01-01

    This report evaluates land surface hydrologic processes in the boreal forest using observations collected during the Boreal Ecosystem Atmospheric Study (BOREAS), carried out in the boreal forest of central Canada from 1994 to 1996. Three separate studies, each of which constitutes a journal publication, are included. The first study describes the application of a spatially-distributed hydrologic model, originally developed for mid-latitude forested environments, to selected BOREAS flux measurement sites. Compared to point observations at the flux towers, the model represented energy and moisture fluxes reasonably well, but shortcomings were identified in the soil thermal submodel and the partitioning of evapotranspiration into canopy and subcanopy components. As a first step towards improving this partitioning, the second study develops a new parameterization for transmission of shortwave radiation through boreal forest canopies. The new model accounts for the transmission of diffuse and direct shortwave radiation and accounts for multiple scattering in the canopy and multiple reflections between the canopy layers.

  17. Aspects of Boreal Forest Hydrology: From Stand to Watershed

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nijssen, B.

    2000-01-01

    This report evaluates land surface hydrologic processes in the boreal forest using observations collected during the Boreal Ecosystem Atmospheric Study (BOREAS), carried out in the boreal forest of central Canada from 1994 to 1996. Three separate studies, each of which constitutes a journal publication, are included. The first study describes the application of a spatially-distributed hydrologic model, originally developed for mid-latitude forested environments, to selected BOREAS flux measurement sites. Compared to point observations at the flux towers, the model represented energy and moisture fluxes reasonably well, but shortcomings were identified in the soil thermal submodel and the partitioning of evapotranspiration into canopy and subcanopy components. As a first step towards improving this partitioning, the second study develops a new parameterization for transmission of shortwave radiation through boreal forest canopies. The new model accounts for the transmission of diffuse and direct shortwave radiation and accounts for multiple scattering in the canopy and multiple reflections between the canopy layers.

  18. Estimation of potential and actual evapotranspiration of boreal forest ecosystems in the European part of Russia during the Holocene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Olchev, A.; Novenko, E.

    2011-10-01

    A simple regression model for calculating annual actual evapotranspiration (ET) and potential evapotranspiration (PET), as well as annual transpiration (TR) of mature boreal forests grown in the European part of Russia in the Holocene using paleoclimatic and paleobotanical data (air temperature, precipitation, forest species compositions) is presented. The model is based on nonlinear approximations of annual values of ET, TR and PET obtained by the Levenberg-Marquardt method using the results of numerical simulations of ET, TR and PET provided by a process-based Mixfor-SVAT model for forests with different species compositions under various thermal and moistening conditions. The results of ET, TR and PET reconstructions for the Holocene show large variability and high correlation with the air temperature pattern. Minimal values of ET and PET are obtained for the Younger Dryas cold phase (11.0-10.0 14C kyr BP) when ET varied between 320 and 370 mm yr - 1 and PET varied between 410 and 480 mm yr - 1. During the Late Atlantic periods of the Holocene (4.5-5.1 14C kyr BP), ET and PET reached maximal values (ET: 430-450 mm yr - 1 and PET: 550-570 mm yr - 1).

  19. Sensitivity of ecosystem CO sub 2 flux in the boreal forests of interior Alaska to climatic parameters

    SciTech Connect

    Bonan, G.B.

    1992-03-01

    An ecophysiological model of carbon uptake and release was used to examine C02 fluxes in 17 mature forests near Fairbanks, Alaska. Under extant climatic conditions, ecosystem C02 flux ranged from a loss of 212 g C02 m-2 yr-1 in a black spruce stand to an uptake of 2882 g C02 m-2 yr-1 in a birch stand. Increased air temperature resulted in substantial soil warming. Without concomitant increases in nutrient availability, large climatic warming reduced ecosystem C02 uptake in all forests. Deciduous and white spruce stands were still a sink for C02, but black spruce stands became, on average, a net source Of CO2- With increased nutrient availability that might accompany soil warming, enhanced tree growth increased C02 uptake in conifer stands.

  20. Browning boreal forests of western North America

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Verbyla, David

    2011-12-01

    Forest Ecol. Manag. 227 219-32 Berg E E, Hillman K M, Dial R and DeRuwe A 2009 Recent woody invasion of wetlands on the Kenai Peninsula Lowlands, south-central Alaska: a major regime shift after 18 000 years of wet Sphagnum-sedge peat recruitment Canadian J. Forest Res. 39 2033-46 Brabets T P and Walvoord M A 2009 Trends in streamflow in the Yukon River Basin from 1944 to 2004 and the influence of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation J. Hydrol. 371 108-19 Bunn A G, Goetz S J, Kimball J S and Zhang K 2007 Northern high-latitude ecosystems respond to climate change EOS Trans. Am. Geophys. Union 88 333-40 D'Arrigo R, Kaufmann R K, Davi N, Jacoby G C, Laskowski C, Myneni R B and Cherubini P 2004 Thresholds for warming-induced growth decline at elevational tree line in the Yukon Territory, Canada Glob. Biogeochem. Cycles 18 GB3021 Goetz S J, Bunn A G, Fiske G J and Houghton R A 2005 Satellite-observed photosynthetic trends across boreal North America associated with climate and fire disturbance Proc. Natl Acad. Sci. USA 102 13521-5 Lloyd A H and Bunn A G 2007 Responses of the circumpolar boreal forest to the 20th century climate variability Environ. Res. Lett. 2 045013 Lloyd A H and Fastie C L 2002 Spatial and temporal variability in the growth and climate response of treeline trees in Alaska Clim. Change 52 481-509 Malmström C and Raffa K R 2000 Biotic disturbance agents in the boreal forest: considerations for vegetation change models Glob. Change Biol. 6 (Suppl. 1) 35-48 McGuire A D, Ruess R W, Lloyd A, Yarie J, Clein J S and Juday G P 2010 Vulnerability of white spruce tree growth in interior Alaska in response to climate variability: dendrochronological, demographic, and experimental perspectives Canadian J. Forest Res. 40 1197-209 Michealian M, Hogg E H, Hall R J and Arsenault E 2011 Massive mortality of aspen following severe drought along the southern edge of the Canadian boreal forest Glob. Change Biol. 17 2084-94 Parent M B and Verbyla D 2010 The browning of Alaska

  1. Differential response of bird functional traits to post-fire salvage logging in a boreal forest ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Azeria, Ermias T.; Ibarzabal, Jacques; Hébert, Christian; Boucher, Jonathan; Imbeau, Louis; Savard, Jean-Pierre L.

    2011-05-01

    The concept of functional trait-environment relationship posits that species in a local community should possess similar traits that match the selective environment. The present study examines species trait-habitat (using Fourth-corner and RLQ analyses) and habitat occupancy patterns (logistic regression models) of bird assemblages in boreal forest stands following disturbances by forest fire and salvage logging. The stands differed in the amount and composition of residual tree retention, salvage- and aquatic-edges, degree of burn severity (all measured at 100 and 500 m buffers), as well as landscape-level variables such as distance to previously burned forests. Tests of trait-habitat relationships showed that canopy-nesters and bark- and foliage- insectivores required high levels of residual trees of low burn severity, with the feeding guilds showing affinity for different stand composition. In contrast, ground-nesters and omnivores thrived in salvaged areas and associated edges. In addition, cavity-nesting and ground-foragers were associated with severely burned stands. The species' habitat occupancy patterns were commensurate with trait requirements, which also appeared to be scale-dependent. For example, some fire-associated species had high occupancy probability in severely burned stands at small-scale (100 m buffer), which was consistent with their cavity-nesting trait. This pattern, however, was not evident at large-scale, where their feeding requirement (bark-insectivores) for low-severity burns dominated. Our study suggests that trait-habitat relationships can provide critical information to the complex ways species' relate to key habitat factors following natural and anthropogenic disturbances.

  2. Carbon balance of the Alaskan boreal forest

    Treesearch

    John Yarie; Tim Hammond

    1996-01-01

    Determination of the carbon balance in a broad forest region like the Alaskan boreal forest requires the development of a number of important environmental (state factors) classes to allow for the development of carbon balance estimates.

  3. Seasonal variability in foliar characteristics and physiology for boreal forest species at the five Saskatchewan tower sites during the 1994 Boreal Ecosystem-Atmosphere Study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Middleton, E. M.; Sullivan, J. H.; Bovard, B. D.; Deluca, A. J.; Chan, S. S.; Cannon, T. A.

    1997-12-01

    Leaf-level measurements of gas exchange, chemistry, morphology, and spectral optical properties were acquired at the five instrumented tower sites during the three 1994 growing season intensive field campaigns (IFCs) conducted near Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, as part of the Boreal Ecosystem-Atmosphere Study (BOREAS). Stands included old and young aspen (OA, YA) associated with the hazelnut shrub, old and young jack pine (OJP, YJP) stands, and an old black spruce (OBS) stand; white spruce (at YA) and an understory herb (dogbane, at OJP) were also examined. Midsummer peak photosynthesis for aspen leaves in the field (A, light saturated) and laboratory (Amax light and CO2 saturated) was ˜12.6 and 33-41 μmol CO2 m-2 s-1. Black spruce exhibited the lowest A, 3 μmol CO2 m-2 s-1. Jack pine and black spruce attained their highest Amax (17-20 μmol CO2 m-2 s-1) in late summer/early fall. Gas exchange by white spruce was significantly higher and stomatal limitation lower than for other conifers, at levels comparable to broadleaf responses. White spruce foliage had the highest chlorophyll content in fall (˜41 μg cm-2), followed by aspen (OA) and hazelnut (YA) in midsummer (˜31 μg cm-2). Specific leaf mass of aspen, hazelnut, and conifer foliage was 86, ˜47, and ˜174 g m-2, respectively. Leaf nitrogen content of broadleaves (18-40 g N g-1 dry wt) was 2-3 times greater than conifer needles (8-12 g N g-1). Significantly larger needles were produced at OJP versus YJP, but needle number per age class was greater at YJP. The absorbed photosynthetically active radiation fraction (fAPAR) in June/July averaged ˜80% for broadleaves and ˜83% in conifer needles. The simple ratio (SR, near-infrared/red ratio) calculated from foliar transmittances was more strongly related to fAPAR than SR calculated from reflectances, with stronger correlation for broadleaves (r=0.92) than for conifers (r=0.78).

  4. Soil biogeochemistry properties vary between two boreal forest ecosystems in Quebec: significant differences in soil carbon, available nutrients and iron and aluminium crystallinity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bastianelli, Carole; Ali, Adam A.; Beguin, Julien; Bergeron, Yves; Grondin, Pierre; Hély, Christelle; Paré, David

    2017-04-01

    At the northernmost extent of the managed forest in Quebec, the boreal forest is currently undergoing an ecological transition from closed-canopy black spruce-moss forests towards open-canopy lichen woodlands, which spread southward. Our study aim was to determine whether this shift could impact soil properties on top of its repercussions on forest productivity or carbon storage. We studied the soil biogeochemical composition of three pedological layers in moss forests (MF) and lichen woodlands (LW) north of the Manicouagan crater in Quebec. The humus layer (FH horizons) was significantly thicker and held more carbon, nitrogen and exchangeable Ca and Mg in MF plots than in LW plots. When considering mineral horizons, we found that the deep C horizon had a very close composition in both ecosystem plots, suggesting that the parent material was of similar geochemical nature. This was expected as all selected sites developed from glacial deposit. Multivariate analysis of surficial mineral B horizon showed however that LW B horizon displayed higher concentrations of Al and Fe oxides than MF B horizon, particularly for inorganic amorphous forms. Conversely, main exchangeable base cations (Ca, Mg) were higher in B horizon of MF than that of LW. Ecosystem types explained much of the variations in the B horizon geochemical composition. We thus suggest that the differences observed in the geochemical composition of the B horizon have a biological origin rather than a mineralogical origin. We also showed that total net stocks of carbon stored in MF soils were three times higher than in LW soils (FH + B horizons, roots apart). Altogether, we suggest that variations in soil properties between MF and LW are linked to a cascade of events involving the impacts of natural disturbances such as wildfires on forest regeneration that determines the of vegetation structure (stand density) and composition (ground cover type) and their subsequent consequences on soil environmental

  5. Reactivity and mobility of new and old mercury deposition in a boreal forest ecosystem during the first year of the METAALICUS study

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hintelmann, H.; Harris, R.; Heyes, A.; Hurley, J.P.; Kelly, C.A.; Krabbenhoft, D.P.; Lindberg, S.; Rudd, J.W.M.; Scott, K.J.; St. Louis, V.L.

    2002-01-01

    The METAALICUS (Mercury Experiment To Assess Atmospheric Loading In Canada and the US) project is a whole ecosystem experiment designed to study the activity, mobility, and availability of atmospherically deposited mercury. To investigate the dynamics of mercury newly deposited onto a terrestrial ecosystem, an enriched stable isotope of mercury (202Hg) was sprayed onto a Boreal forest subcatchment in an experiment that allowed us, for the first time, to monitor the fate of "new" mercury in deposition and to distinguish it from native mercury historically stored in the ecosystem. Newly deposited mercury was more reactive than the native mercury with respect to volatilization and methylation pathways. Mobility through runoff was very low and strongly decreased with time because of a rapid equilibration with the large native pool of "bound" mercury. Over one season, only ???8% of the added 202Hg volatilized to the atmosphere and less than 1% appeared in runoff. Within a few months, approximately 66% of the applied 202Hg remained associated with above ground vegetation, with the rest being incorporated into soils. The fraction of 202Hg bound to vegetation was much higher than seen for native Hg (<5% vegetation), suggesting that atmospherically derived mercury enters the soil pool with a time delay, after plants senesce and decompose. The initial mobility of mercury received through small rain events or dry deposition decreased markedly in a relatively short time period, suggesting that mercury levels in terrestrial runoff may respond slowly to changes in mercury deposition rates.

  6. Gaseous emissions from Canadian boreal forest fires

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cofer, Wesley R., III; Levine, Joel S.; Winstead, Edward L.; Stocks, Brian J.

    1990-01-01

    CO2-normalized emission ratios for carbon monoxide (CO), hydrogen (H2), methane (CH4), total nonmethane hydrocarbons (TNMHC), and nitrous oxide (N2O) were determined from smoke samples collected during low-altitude helicopter flights over two prescribed fires in northern Ontario, Canada. The emission ratios determined from these prescribed boreal forest fires are compared to emission ratios determined over two graminoid (grass) wetlands fires in central Florida and are found to be substantially higher (elevated levels of reduced gas production relative to CO2) during all stages of combustion. These results argue strongly for the need to characterize biomass burning emissions from the major global vegetation/ecosystems in order to couple combustion emissions to their vegetation/ecosystem type.

  7. Gaseous emissions from Canadian boreal forest fires

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cofer, Wesley R., III; Levine, Joel S.; Winstead, Edward L.; Stocks, Brian J.

    1990-01-01

    CO2-normalized emission ratios for carbon monoxide (CO), hydrogen (H2), methane (CH4), total nonmethane hydrocarbons (TNMHC), and nitrous oxide (N2O) were determined from smoke samples collected during low-altitude helicopter flights over two prescribed fires in northern Ontario, Canada. The emission ratios determined from these prescribed boreal forest fires are compared to emission ratios determined over two graminoid (grass) wetlands fires in central Florida and are found to be substantially higher (elevated levels of reduced gas production relative to CO2) during all stages of combustion. These results argue strongly for the need to characterize biomass burning emissions from the major global vegetation/ecosystems in order to couple combustion emissions to their vegetation/ecosystem type.

  8. Nitrogen balance along a boreal forest fire chronosequence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Palviainen, Marjo; Pumpanen, Jukka; Berninger, Frank; Heinonsalo, Jussi; Sun, Hui; Köster, Egle; Köster, Kajar

    2016-04-01

    Fire is a major natural disturbance factor in boreal forests, and the frequency of forest fires is predicted to increase due to climate change in boreal regions. Because boreal forests comprise 30% of the global forest area, increases in the annual area burned may have significant implications for global carbon and nitrogen (N) cycles. The productivity of boreal forests is limited by low N availability. Fires cause N loss from ecosystems through oxidation and volatilization of N stored in biomass and soil. N balance may be poorly buffered against forest fires especially in sub-arctic ecosystems where atmospheric N deposition is low. Although forest fires alter N dynamics, there are little quantitative data available on N pools and fluxes through post-fire succession in sub-arctic boreal forests. We studied changes in N pools and fluxes, and the overall N balance across a 155-year forest fire chronosequence in sub-arctic Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris) forests in Värriö Strict Nature Reserve situated in Finnish Lapland (67°46' N, 29°35' E). Soil was the largest N pool in all forest age classes and comprised 69-82% of the total ecosystem N pool. The total ecosystem N pool varied from 622 kg ha-1 in the recently burned forest to 960 kg ha-1 in the 155-year-old forest. The forests were N sinks in all age classes the annual N accumulation rate being 2.28 kg ha-1 yr-1 which was distributed almost equally between soil and biomass. The observed changes in ecosystem N pools were consistent with the computed N balance 2.10 kg ha-1 yr-1 over the 155-year post-fire period (Balance= (atmospheric deposition + N fixation) - (leaching + N2O emissions)). The results indicated that N deposition is an important component of the N balance and the N outputs are small (13% of the inputs) in the studied ecosystems. N2O fluxes were negligible (≤ 0.01 kg ha-1 yr-1) compared to the other N fluxes. The biological N fixation increased with succession and constituted 9% of the total N

  9. Fire in boreal ecosystems of Eurasia: First results of the Bor Forest island fire experiment, Fire Research Campaign Asia-North (FIRESCAN)

    SciTech Connect

    Angelstam, P. ); Bufetov, N.S. ); Clark, J. . Botany Dept.)

    1994-12-01

    Fire is an important natural and anthropogenic factor in the dynamics of the boreal forest system. The ecological and environmental impacts of boreal fires depend on fire weather, fuel availability, fire behavior and history of sand development (frequency and size of fires and other biotic and abiotic disturbances, influence of surrounding landscape on successional developments). About 70% of the global boreal forest is in Eurasia, almost all of it in the Russian Federation. It is estimated that in years with high fire danger up to ca. 10 million ha of forest and other land in the Russian Federation are affected by fire. The demand for reliable information on the role of natural and anthropogenic fire and the necessity to develop adequate fire management systems is basically due to globally increasing concerns about (1) impacts of boreal wildfires on atmosphere and climate, (2) changing utilization and ecologically destructive practices in boreal forestry, and (3) possible consequences of global climate change on the boreal forest system.

  10. Resistance of the boreal forest to high burn rates

    PubMed Central

    Héon, Jessie; Arseneault, Dominique; Parisien, Marc-André

    2014-01-01

    Boreal ecosystems and their large carbon stocks are strongly shaped by extensive wildfires. Coupling climate projections with records of area burned during the last 3 decades across the North American boreal zone suggests that area burned will increase by 30–500% by the end of the 21st century, with a cascading effect on ecosystem dynamics and on the boreal carbon balance. Fire size and the frequency of large-fire years are both expected to increase. However, how fire size and time since previous fire will influence future burn rates is poorly understood, mostly because of incomplete records of past fire overlaps. Here, we reconstruct the length of overlapping fires along a 190-km-long transect during the last 200 y in one of the most fire-prone boreal regions of North America to document how fire size and time since previous fire will influence future fire recurrence. We provide direct field evidence that extreme burn rates can be sustained by a few occasional droughts triggering immense fires. However, we also show that the most fire-prone areas of the North American boreal forest are resistant to high burn rates because of overabundant young forest stands, thereby creating a fuel-mediated negative feedback on fire activity. These findings will help refine projections of fire effect on boreal ecosystems and their large carbon stocks. PMID:25201981

  11. Resistance of the boreal forest to high burn rates.

    PubMed

    Héon, Jessie; Arseneault, Dominique; Parisien, Marc-André

    2014-09-23

    Boreal ecosystems and their large carbon stocks are strongly shaped by extensive wildfires. Coupling climate projections with records of area burned during the last 3 decades across the North American boreal zone suggests that area burned will increase by 30-500% by the end of the 21st century, with a cascading effect on ecosystem dynamics and on the boreal carbon balance. Fire size and the frequency of large-fire years are both expected to increase. However, how fire size and time since previous fire will influence future burn rates is poorly understood, mostly because of incomplete records of past fire overlaps. Here, we reconstruct the length of overlapping fires along a 190-km-long transect during the last 200 y in one of the most fire-prone boreal regions of North America to document how fire size and time since previous fire will influence future fire recurrence. We provide direct field evidence that extreme burn rates can be sustained by a few occasional droughts triggering immense fires. However, we also show that the most fire-prone areas of the North American boreal forest are resistant to high burn rates because of overabundant young forest stands, thereby creating a fuel-mediated negative feedback on fire activity. These findings will help refine projections of fire effect on boreal ecosystems and their large carbon stocks.

  12. Modeling the effects of organic nitrogen uptake by plants on the carbon cycling of boreal ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Q.; Zhuang, Q.

    2013-08-01

    Boreal forest and tundra are the major ecosystems in the northern high latitudes in which a large amount of carbon is stored. These ecosystems are nitrogen-limited due to slow mineralization rate of the soil organic nitrogen. Recently, abundant field studies have found that organic nitrogen is another important nitrogen supply for boreal ecosystems. In this study, we incorporated a mechanism that allowed boreal plants to uptake small molecular amino acids into a process-based biogeochemical model, the Terrestrial Ecosystem Model (TEM), to evaluate the impact of organic nitrogen uptake on ecosystem carbon cycling. The new version of the model was evaluated at both boreal forest and tundra sites. We found that the modeled organic nitrogen uptake accounted for 36-87% of total nitrogen uptake by plants in tundra ecosystems and 26-50% for boreal forests, suggesting that tundra ecosystem might have more relied on the organic form of nitrogen than boreal forests. The simulated monthly gross ecosystem production (GPP) and net ecosystem production (NEP) tended to be larger with the new version of the model since the plant uptake of organic nitrogen alleviated the soil nitrogen limitation especially during the growing season. The sensitivity study indicated that the most important factors controlling the plant uptake of organic nitrogen were the maximum root uptake rate (Imax) and the radius of the root (r0) in our model. The model uncertainty due to uncertain parameters associated with organic nitrogen uptake at tundra ecosystem was larger than at boreal forest ecosystems. This study suggests that considering the organic nitrogen uptake by plants is important to boreal ecosystem carbon modeling.

  13. Substrate Geochemistry and Soil Development in Boreal Forest and Tundra Ecosystems in the Yukon-Tanana Upland and Seward Peninsula, Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gough, L.P.; Crock, J.G.; Wang, B.; Day, W.C.; Eberl, D.D.; Sanzolone, R.F.; Lamothe, P.J.

    2008-01-01

    We report on soil development as a function of bedrock type and the presence of loess in two high latitude ecosystems (boreal forest and tundra) and from two regions in Alaska?the Yukon-Tanana Upland (YTU, east-central Alaska) and the Seward Peninsula (SP, far-west coastal Alaska). This approach to the study of 'cold soils' is fundamental to the quantification of regional geochemical landscape patterns. Of the five state factors in this study, bedrock and biota (ecosystem; vegetation zone) vary whereas climate (within each area) and topography are controlled. The influence of time is assumed to be controlled, as these soils are thousands of years old (late Quaternary to Holocene). The primary minerals in soils from YTU, developed over loess and crystalline bedrock (metamorphic and intrusive), are quartz, plagioclase, and 2:1 clays; whereas in the SP, where loess and metasedimentary bedrock (schist and quartzite) predominate, they are quartz and muscovite. The A horizon of both regions is rich in peat. Examination of the ratio of mobile (K2O, CaO, and Fe2O3) to immobile (TiO2) major oxides, within each region, shows that very little difference exists in the chemical weathering of soils developed between the two ecosystems examined. Differences were observed between tundra soils developed in the two regions. These differences are most probably due to the dissimilarity in the geochemical importance of both loess and bedrock. A minimal loss of cadmium with soil depth is seen for soils developed over YTU crystalline bedrock in the boreal forest environments. This trend is related to the mobility of cadmium in these soils as well as to its biogenic cycling. Major differences were observed in the proportion of cadmium and zinc among the A, B, and C horizon material sequestered in various soil fractions as measured by sequential soil extractions. These trends followed such variables as the decrease with depth in organic matter, the change in clay minerals, and the change

  14. Estimating energy balance fluxes above a boreal forest from radiometric temperature observations

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    The great areal extent of boreal forests confers these ecosystems potential to impact on the global surface-atmosphere energy exchange. A modeling approach, based on a simplified two-source energy balance model, was proposed to estimate energy balance fluxes above boreal forests using thermal infrar...

  15. Snow and Vegetation Interactions at Boundaries in Alaska's Boreal Forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hiemstra, C. A.; Sturm, M.

    2012-12-01

    There has been increased attention on snow-vegetation interactions in Arctic tundra because of rapid climate-driven changes affecting that snow-dominated ecosystem. Yet, far less attention is paid to boreal forest snow-vegetation interactions even though climatic conditions are changing there as well. Further, it is the prevalent terrestrial biome on the planet. The forest is a variable patchwork of trees, shrubs, grasses, and forbs shaped by wind, fire, topography, water drainage, and permafrost. These patches and their boundaries have a corresponding effect on boreal snow distributions; however, measurements characterizing boreal snow are sparse and focus within patches (vs. between patches). Unfortunately, remote sensing approaches in such forested areas frequently fall short due to coarse footprint size and dense canopy cover. Over the last several years we have been examining the characteristics of snow cover within and across boundaries in the boreal forest, seeking to identify gradients in snow depth due to snow-vegetation interactions as well identifying methods whereby boreal forest surveys could be improved. Specifically, we collected end-of-season snow measurements in the Alaska boreal forest during long-distance traverses in the Tanana Basin in 2010 (26 sites) and within the Yukon Flats National Wildlife Refuge in 2011 (26 sites). At each site (all relatively flat), hundreds of snow depths were collected using a GPS-equipped Magnaprobe, which is an automated tool for measuring and locating individual snow depths. Corresponding canopy properties included NDVI determined from high-resolution satellite imagery; canopy properties were variable among the 1ha sites and some areas had recently burned. Among sites, NDVI had the largest correlation with snow depths; elevation was not significant. Vegetation transition zones play important roles in explaining observed snow depth. Similar to treeline work showing nutrient and energy gradients are influenced by

  16. Whole Ecosystem Low-level 14C Pulse Labeling and CO2 Flux Measurements in a Boreal Forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carbone, M.; Trumbore, S.; Czimczik, C.; McDuffee, K.; McMillan, A.

    2004-12-01

    We developed a large volume, low level, 14C pulse-chase, field labeling method to determine the timing and contribution of recent photosynthetic products to total ecosystem respiration in a poorly drained black spruce forest stand in Manitoba, Canada. The site is part of a chronosequence of black spruce stands located in the BOREAS Northern Study Area (55N, 98W), and time since fire is 40 years. The radiocarbon addition was designed to produce a 14C signature of ~1500 times Modern for CO2 at ambient levels inside the ~37,000 L volume light chamber. At this level of labeling, the radioactivity in our 14C source (acidified sodium bicarbonate solution with specific activity of ~30 nCi/g) and in the chamber were well below levels that are regulated. We labeled two chambers in August 2004. The vegetation inside the first (37,000 L) chamber included black spruce trees (ranging from seedlings to 4 m tall) with feather moss and shrub understory. A second 14CO2 label was applied in a smaller chamber (500 L) containing only feather mosses. Both chambers were constructed from polyethylene plastic that allowed for 70 percent transmission of PAR. For seven days following the label, we measured the quantity and 14C content of soil respiration with small (10 L) dark chambers, above-ground respiration with branch bags, and total ecosystem respiration with a dark chamber. Live root and moss 14C content were measured by field incubations. Additionally, soil gas 14C content at two depths within the moss/organic layer was measured. Radiocarbon measurements are made using Accelerator Mass Spectrometry, which allows us to easily distinguish the presence of the label in small amounts (mg) of material. We will report the radiocarbon (delta 14C) signature of individual respiration sources. Preliminary results show that we can use these isotopic signatures to follow the labeled contribution of respiration from individual sources (moss, root/root exudates, and needle) to total ecosystem

  17. Landscape pattern and successional dynamics in the boreal forest

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hall, Forrest G.; Strebel, Donald E.; Goetz, Scott J.; Woods, Kerry D.; Botkin, Daniel B.

    1987-01-01

    The landscape-scale community dynamics of a boreal forest ecosystem was investigated using the Landsat MSS data record form 1973 to 1983 to generate a stochastic description of the key life cycle states of the community landscape elements. Such descriptions can provide input and verification for models of community development and landscape dynamics. It is anticipated that the proposed approach may be extended to measure, monitor, and model ecosystems at continental and planetary scales.

  18. Landscape pattern and successional dynamics in the boreal forest

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hall, Forrest G.; Strebel, Donald E.; Goetz, Scott J.; Woods, Kerry D.; Botkin, Daniel B.

    1987-01-01

    The landscape-scale community dynamics of a boreal forest ecosystem was investigated using the Landsat MSS data record form 1973 to 1983 to generate a stochastic description of the key life cycle states of the community landscape elements. Such descriptions can provide input and verification for models of community development and landscape dynamics. It is anticipated that the proposed approach may be extended to measure, monitor, and model ecosystems at continental and planetary scales.

  19. Biomass burning emissions estimates in the boreal forests of Siberia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kukavskaya, E. A.; Ivanova, G. A.; Soja, A. J.; Conard, S. G.

    2012-04-01

    Wildfire is the main boreal forest disturbance and can burn 10-30 million hectares annually, thus modifying the global carbon budget through direct fire emissions, postfire biogenic emissions, and by maintaining or altering ecosystems through establishing the beginning and end of successional processes. Fires in the Russian boreal forest range from low-severity surface fires to high-severity crown fires. Estimates of carbon emissions from fires in Russian boreal forests vary substantially due to differences in ecosystems types, burned area calculations, and the amount of fuel consumed. There is an urgent need to obtain more accurate and impartial fire carbon loss estimates in the boreal forests of Siberia due to their considerable contribution to the regional and global carbon balance. We examined uncertainties in estimates of carbon emissions. Area burned in the Siberian region was analyzed and compared using distinct methodologies. Differences between mapped ecosystems were also compared and contrasted to evaluate the potential for error resulting from disparate vegetation structure and fuel consumption estimates. Accurate fuel consumption estimates are obtained in the course of fire experiments with pre- and post-fire biomass measuring. Our large-scale experiments carried out in the course of the FIRE BEAR (Fire Effects in the Boreal Eurasia Region) Project provided quantitative and qualitative data on ecosystem state and carbon emissions due to fires of known behavior in major forest types of Siberia that could be used to verify large-scale carbon emissions estimates. Carbon emissions from fires vary annually and interannually and can increase several times in extreme fire years in comparison to normal fire years. Climate change and increasing drought length have increased the probability of high-severity fire occurrences. This would result in greater carbon losses and efflux to the atmosphere. This research was supported by NASA LCLUC Program, Fulbright

  20. The likely impact of elevated [CO2], nitrogen deposition, increased temperature and management on carbon sequestration in temperate and boreal forest ecosystems: a literature review.

    PubMed

    Hyvönen, Riitta; Agren, Göran I; Linder, Sune; Persson, Tryggve; Cotrufo, M Francesca; Ekblad, Alf; Freeman, Michael; Grelle, Achim; Janssens, Ivan A; Jarvis, Paul G; Kellomäki, Seppo; Lindroth, Anders; Loustau, Denis; Lundmark, Tomas; Norby, Richard J; Oren, Ram; Pilegaard, Kim; Ryan, Michael G; Sigurdsson, Bjarni D; Strömgren, Monika; van Oijen, Marcel; Wallin, Göran

    2007-01-01

    Temperate and boreal forest ecosystems contain a large part of the carbon stored on land, in the form of both biomass and soil organic matter. Increasing atmospheric [CO2], increasing temperature, elevated nitrogen deposition and intensified management will change this C store. Well documented single-factor responses of net primary production are: higher photosynthetic rate (the main [CO2] response); increasing length of growing season (the main temperature response); and higher leaf-area index (the main N deposition and partly [CO2] response). Soil organic matter will increase with increasing litter input, although priming may decrease the soil C stock initially, but litter quality effects should be minimal (response to [CO2], N deposition, and temperature); will decrease because of increasing temperature; and will increase because of retardation of decomposition with N deposition, although the rate of decomposition of high-quality litter can be increased and that of low-quality litter decreased. Single-factor responses can be misleading because of interactions between factors, in particular those between N and other factors, and indirect effects such as increased N availability from temperature-induced decomposition. In the long term the strength of feedbacks, for example the increasing demand for N from increased growth, will dominate over short-term responses to single factors. However, management has considerable potential for controlling the C store.

  1. Simple and Multiple Endmember Mixture Analysis in the Boreal Forest

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Roberts, Dar A.; Gamon, John A.; Qiu, Hong-Lie

    2000-01-01

    A key scientific objective of the original Boreal Ecosystem-Atmospheric Study (BOREAS) field campaign (1993-1996) was to obtain the baseline data required for modeling and predicting fluxes of energy, mass, and trace gases in the boreal forest biome. These data sets are necessary to determine the sensitivity of the boreal forest biome to potential climatic changes and potential biophysical feedbacks on climate. A considerable volume of remotely sensed and supporting field data were acquired by numerous researchers to meet this objective. By design, remote sensing and modeling were considered critical components for scaling efforts, extending point measurements from flux towers and field sites over larger spatial and longer temporal scales. A major focus of the BOREAS Follow-on program was concerned with integrating the diverse remotely sensed and ground-based data sets to address specific questions such as carbon dynamics at local to regional scales.

  2. Autotrophic and heterotrophic soil respiration determined with trenching, soil CO2 fluxes and 13CO2/12CO2 concentration gradients in a boreal forest ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pumpanen, Jukka; Shurpali, Narasinha; Kulmala, Liisa; Kolari, Pasi; Heinonsalo, Jussi

    2017-04-01

    Soil CO2 efflux forms a substantial part of the ecosystem carbon balance, and it can contribute more than half of the annual ecosystem respiration. Recently assimilated carbon which has been fixed in photosynthesis during the previous days plays an important role in soil CO2 efflux, and its contribution is seasonally variable. Moreover, the recently assimilated C has been shown to stimulate the decomposition of recalcitrant C in soil and increase the mineralization of nitrogen, the most important macronutrient limiting gross primary productivity (GPP) in boreal ecosystems. Podzolic soils, typical in boreal zone, have distinctive layers with different biological and chemical properties. The biological activity in different soil layers has large seasonal variation due to vertical gradient in temperature, soil organic matter and root biomass. Thus, the source of CO2 and its components have a vertical gradient which is seasonally variable. The contribution of recently assimilated C and its seasonal as well as spatial variation in soil are difficult to assess without disturbing the system. The most common method of partitioning soil respiration into its components is trenching which entails the roots being cut or girdling where the flow of carbohydrates from the canopy to roots has been isolated by cutting of the phloem. Other methods for determining the contribution of autotrophic (Ra) and heterotrophic (Rh) respiration components in soil CO2 efflux are pulse labelling with 13CO2 or 14CO2 or the natural abundance of 13C and/or 14C isotopes. Also differences in seasonal and short-term temperature response of soil respiration have been used to separate Ra and Rh. We compared the seasonal variation in Ra and Rh using the trenching method and differences between seasonal and short-term temperature responses of soil respiration. I addition, we estimated the vertical variation in soil biological activity using soil CO2 concentration and the natural abundance of 13C and 12C

  3. Modeling boreal fire and forest dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Groot, W. J.; McRae, D. J.; Cantin, A.

    2009-04-01

    The circumpolar boreal forest covers about 1.4 billion ha, representing 1/3 of global forest land. Approximately 2/3 of the boreal forest is located in Eurasia and the remainder in North America. Wildland fires annually burn an estimated 12-20 M ha across the entire boreal region, having a major influence on forest structure and composition. However, fire weather, fire behaviour, and fire ecology differ greatly between the boreal forests in eastern and western hemispheres, which have significant impact on tree survival, post-fire regeneration and forest succession. Every year, wildland fires in Canada and Alaska burn an average of 2-3 M ha, primarily by stand-replacing, high intensity crown fires. By comparison, Russian fires burn about 10-15 M ha annually, primarily by low to moderate intensity surface fires that cause minimal tree mortality. Fire weather conditions in the most fire prone regions of Russia are generally more severe than in similar regions of North America. Finally, the species composition of eastern and western boreal forests is also very different. Russian forests are dominated by larch (30%) and pine (28%) with lower components of spruce (14%) and poplar/birch hardwoods (18%) By contrast, Canadian forests are comprised mainly of spruce (35%), pine (22%), poplar/birch (16%), and fir (9%). All of these factors contribute to the variability in vegetation dynamics occurring within the circumpolar boreal region. This modeling study examines the interactions of fire weather, forest composition, fire behaviour, and fire ecology on forest vegetation dynamics within the boreal region. Similar active fire zones in western Canada and eastern Siberia were used as study sites. Historical weather data were collected for both locations and used to calculate fire weather data, which were used as primary driving variables for the Boreal Fire Effects model (BORFIRE). Fire behaviour was calculated in BORFIRE using data for major tree species at both study sites

  4. Towards a comprehensive emission inventory of terpenoids from boreal ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tarvainen, V.; Hakola, H.; Rinne, J.; Hellén, H.; Haapanala, S.

    2007-07-01

    The biogenic volatile organic compound emissions in the south boreal, middle boreal and north boreal vegetation zones in Finland were calculated utilizing satellite land cover information and actual meteorological data in a BEIS-type canopy emission model. The sesquiterpene emissions from the boreal forest were estimated for the first time, and the inventory was further complemented by the inclusion of wetland isoprene emissions from open fens. Recently published results from emission measurements carried out in various parts of the boreal region were utilized in the compilation of the standard emission potentials and monoterpene emission spectra for the deciduous and coniferous forest categories and wetlands. The average annual isoprene emission fluxes from forests were 73, 56 and 45, and those of monoterpenes 657, 567 and 342 kg per km2 of forest area in the south boreal, middle boreal and north boreal vegetation zones, respectively. The average annual sesquiterpene fluxes were of the same order of magnitude as isoprene, being 54, 46 and 26 kg per km2 of forest area in the south boreal, middle boreal and north boreal vegetation zones, respectively. The isoprene emissions from wetlands were significant, contributing 3%, 18% and 31% of the annual isoprene emissions in the south boreal, middle boreal and north boreal vegetation zones, respectively. Throughout the boreal region, the main emitted monoterpenes were α-pinene and Δ3-carene, with significant contributions from β-pinene and sabinene in summer and autumn. Due to the new seasonal emission potentials of the coniferous species introduced in this work, the overwhelming role of spruce as the main isoprene and monoterpene emitter in the boreal forest is subdued. The new emission inventory also accentuates the role of the boreal deciduous trees as terpenoid emitters in the late summer months.

  5. Moss and lichen cover mapping at local and regional scales in the boreal forest ecosystem of central Canada

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rapalee, G.; Steyaert, L.T.; Hall, F.G.

    2001-01-01

    Mosses and lichens are important components of boreal landscapes [Vitt et al., 1994; Bubier et al., 1997]. They affect plant productivity and belowground carbon sequestration and alter the surface runoff and energy balance. We report the use of multiresolution satellite data to map moss and lichens over the BOREAS region at a 10 m, 30 m, and 1 km scales. Our moss and lichen classification at the 10 m scale is based on ground observations of associations among soil drainage classes, overstory composition, and cover type among four broad classes of ground cover (feather, sphagnum, and brown mosses and lichens). For our 30 m map, we used field observations of ground cover-overstory associations to map mosses and lichens in the BOREAS southern study area (SSA). To scale up to a 1 km (AVHRR) moss map of the BOREAS region, we used the TM SSA mosaics plus regional field data to identify AVHRR overstory-ground cover associations. We found that: 1) ground cover, overstory composition and density are highly correlated, permitting inference of moss and lichen cover from satellite-based land cover classifications; 2) our 1 km moss map reveals that mosses dominate the boreal landscape of central Canada, thereby a significant factor for water, energy, and carbon modeling; 3) TM and AVHRR moss cover maps are comparable; 4) satellite data resolution is important; particularly in detecting the smaller wetland features, lakes, and upland jack pine sites; and 5) distinct regional patterns of moss and lichen cover correspond to latitudinal and elevational gradients. Copyright 2001 by the American Geophysical Union.

  6. Quantifying nitrogen-fixation in feather moss carpets of boreal forests.

    PubMed

    DeLuca, Thomas H; Zackrisson, Olle; Nilsson, Marie-Charlotte; Sellstedt, Anita

    2002-10-31

    Biological nitrogen (N) fixation is the primary source of N within natural ecosystems, yet the origin of boreal forest N has remained elusive. The boreal forests of Eurasia and North America lack any significant, widespread symbiotic N-fixing plants. With the exception of scattered stands of alder in early primary successional forests, N-fixation in boreal forests is considered to be extremely limited. Nitrogen-fixation in northern European boreal forests has been estimated at only 0.5 kg N ha(-1) yr(-1); however, organic N is accumulated in these ecosystems at a rate of 3 kg N ha(-1) yr(-1) (ref. 8). Our limited understanding of the origin of boreal N is unacceptable given the extent of the boreal forest region, but predictable given our imperfect knowledge of N-fixation. Herein we report on a N-fixing symbiosis between a cyanobacterium (Nostoc sp.) and the ubiquitous feather moss, Pleurozium schreberi (Bird) Mitt. that alone fixes between 1.5 and 2.0 kg N ha(-1) yr(-1) in mid- to late-successional forests of northern Scandinavia and Finland. Previous efforts have probably underestimated N-fixation potential in boreal forests.

  7. Effects of boreal forest vegetation on global climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bonan, Gordon B.; Pollard, David; Thompson, Starley L.

    1992-10-01

    TERRESTRIAL ecosystems are thought to play an important role in determining regional and global climate1-6 one example of this is in Amazonia, where destruction of the tropical rainforest leads to warmer and drier conditions4-6. Boreal forest ecosystems may also affect climate. As temperatures rise, the amount of continental and oceanic snow and ice is reduced, so the land and ocean surfaces absorb greater amounts of solar radiation, reinforcing the warming in a 'snow/ice/albedo' feedback which results in large climate sensitivity to radiative forcings7-9. This sensitivity is moderated, however, by the presence of trees in northern latitudes, which mask the high reflectance of snow10,11, leading to warmer winter temperatures than if trees were not present12-14. Here we present results from a global climate model which show that the boreal forest warms both winter and summer air temperatures, relative to simulations in which the forest is replaced with bare ground or tundra vegetation. Our results suggest that future redistributions of boreal forest and tundra vegetation (due, for example, to extensive logging, or the influence of global warming) could initiate important climate feedbacks, which could also extend to lower latitudes.

  8. Bird Responses to burns and clear cuts in the boreal forest of Canada

    Treesearch

    Susan J. Hannon; Pierre Drapeau

    2005-01-01

    Unlike many other ecosystems in North America, the boreal forest in Canada still retains a natural fire regime. However, increasing industrial forestry, primarily clear cutting, could alter natural fire dynamics and adversely affect some species. A possible solution to this, promoted by many forest managers, is to cut the forest in a way that emulates natural fire...

  9. Boreal Forest Watch: A BOREAS Outreach Program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rock, Barrett N.

    1999-01-01

    The Boreal Forest Watch program was initiated in the fall of 1994 to act as an educational outreach program for the BOREAS project in both the BOREAS Southern Study Area (SSA) and Northern Study Area (NSA). Boreal Forest Watch (13FW) was designed to introduce area high school teachers and their students to the types of research activities occurring as part of the BOREAS study of Canadian boreal forests. Several teacher training workshops were offered to teachers from central and northern Saskatchewan and northern Manitoba between May, 1995 and February, 1999; teachers were introduced to techniques for involving their students in on-going environmental monitoring studies within local forested stands. Boreal Forest Watch is an educational outreach program which brings high school students and research scientists together to study the forest and foster a sustainable relationship between people and the planetary life-support system we depend upon. Personnel from the University of New Hampshire (UNH), Complex Systems Research Center (CSRC), with the cooperation from the Prince Albert National Park (PANP), instituted this program to help teachers within the BOREAS Study Areas offer real science research experience to their students. The program has the potential to complement large research projects, such as BOREAS, by providing useful student- collected data to scientists. Yet, the primary goal of BFW is to allow teachers and students to experience a hands-on, inquiry-based approach to leaming science - emulating the process followed by research scientists. In addition to introducing these teachers to on-going BOREAS research, the other goals of the BFW program were to: 1) to introduce authentic science topics and methods to students and teachers through hands-on, field-based activities; and, 2) to build a database of student-collected environmental monitoring data for future global change studies in the boreal region.

  10. Boreal Forest Fires - Behavior and Atmospheric Impacts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stocks, B. J.

    2003-12-01

    Fire is a natural and essential stand-renewing agent in circumboreal forests, and eliminating fire in this region is neither economically possible nor ecologically desirable. In general, boreal fire is managed on the basis of values-at-risk, with high levels of protection afforded to economically and recreationally important areas, while fire is permitted to burn naturally in many remote areas. Current estimates are that an average of 5-15 million hectares burn annually across the boreal zone, with at least 50% of the area burning in largely unmanaged forest. High-intensity crown fires account for the vast majority of the area burned in the boreal zone, particularly in North America. These fires typically consume 20-30 tonnes/ha of fuel, spread at rates up to 100 m/min, and generate intensity levels (or energy release rates) approaching 100,000 kW/m of fire front. Deep forest floor (organic) layers common to boreal forests contribute significantly to high levels of fuel consumption and assist in the propagation of crown fires. When crown fires are sustained through a peak afternoon burning period, they usually produce towering convection columns that can reach the upper troposphere directly. Numerous boreal fires columns reaching 11-14 kilometres in height have been documented in the fire literature. Given the lower altitude of the tropopause at boreal zone latitudes it is not surprising that some boreal fire columns have been recently reported reaching the lower stratosphere. Current global and regional climate models suggest a significant increase in both the severity and frequency of boreal fires under a changing climate, with potentially major impacts on terrestrial carbon storage and the global carbon budget, as well as hemispheric smoke transport. Modelling convection column dynamics is essential to predicting the future transport and atmospheric impacts of boreal fire smoke, and this science requires a solid understanding of fuel consumption and fire

  11. The browning of Alaska's boreal forest

    Treesearch

    Mary Beth Parent; David. Verbyla

    2010-01-01

    We used twelve Landsat scenes from the 1980s-2009 and regional 2000-2009 MODIS data to examine the long-term trend in the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) within unburned areas of the Alaskan boreal forest. Our analysis shows that there has been a declining trend in NDVI in this region, with the strongest "browning trend" occurring in eastern...

  12. Application of semiochemicals to assess the biodiversity of subcortical insects following an ecosystem disturbance in a sub-boreal forest.

    PubMed

    Gandhi, Kamal J K; Gilmore, Daniel W; Haack, Robert A; Katovich, Steven A; Krauth, Steven J; Mattson, William J; Zasada, John C; Seybold, Steven J

    2009-12-01

    From 2000 through 2003 we used semiochemical-baited traps in northeastern Minnesota, USA, to assess changes in assemblages of subcortical forest insects after a catastrophic wind storm in 1999 and subsequent (1999-2000) fuel-reduction activities (salvage-logging and prescribed-burning). We determined the regional efficacy of fifteen semiochemical blends (pheromones and kairomones) as attractants for target and non-target subcortical insect species (Coleoptera: Anthribidae, Buprestidae, Cerambycidae, Cleridae, Cucujidae, Curculionidae, Histeridae, Nemonychidae, Salpingidae, Scolytidae, Tenebrionidae, and Hymenoptera: Siricidae). During the four summers, we trapped 86,471 subcortical insects (143 species) in baited and unbaited Lindgren funnel traps, and 500 beetles (44 species) in baited and unbaited pitfall traps. We report 23 new state collection records of subcortical insects from Minnesota. Trap catches of subcortical insects were greatest in the wind-disturbed areas 2 years after the event, and declined thereafter. Similar trends were observed for subcortical insects in the burned areas. Both wind-disturbance and burning increased the subcortical insect species richness and diversity on the landscape. The subcortical insect species compositions of the salvaged and burned forest areas differed from those of the undisturbed and wind-disturbed areas. Trap catches of subcortical insects in response to semiochemical treatments also varied with year of sampling and land-area treatment. The greatest diversity of subcortical beetle species was in traps baited with attractants for the scolytids, Dendroctonus valens [(+)-α-pinene and (−)-β-pinene] and Dryocoetes spp. [exo-brevicomin and (−)-α-pinene], perhaps reflecting the generic nature of the baits. The most distinct species compositions were collected in response to the woodborer and Dendroctonus simplex baits, whereas the species compositions in traps with the D. valens and Dryocoetes spp. baits, and the

  13. Distribution of 210Pb and 210Po concentrations in wild berries and mushrooms in boreal forest ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Vaaramaa, Kaisa; Solatie, Dina; Aro, Lasse

    2009-12-15

    The activity concentrations and distribution of 210Pb and 210Po in wild berries and edible mushrooms were investigated in Finnish forests. The main study areas were located in Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) forests in southern and northern Finland. The activity concentrations of 210Pb and 210Po in blueberry (Vaccinium myrtillus L.) and lingonberry (Vaccinium vitis-idaea L.) samples decreased in the order: stems>leaves>berries (i.e. fruits). The activity ratios of 210Po/210Pb in the wild berry samples were mainly higher than one, indicating elevated activity concentrations of polonium in the samples. In mushrooms the activity concentrations of 210Pb and especially 210Po were higher than in fruits of the wild berries. The highest activity concentration of 210Pb was detected in Cortinarius armillatus L. (16.2 Bq kg(-1) d.w.) and the lowest in Leccinum vulpinum L. (1.38 Bq kg(-1) d.w.). The 210Po activity concentrations of the whole fruiting bodies ranged from 7.14 Bq kg(-1) d.w. (Russula paludosa L.) to 1174 Bq kg(-1) d.w. (L. vulpinum L.). In general, the highest activity concentrations of 210Po were recorded in boletes. The caps of mushrooms of the Boletaceae family showed higher activity concentrations of 210Po compared to the stipes. In most of the mushrooms analyzed, the activity concentrations of 210Po were higher than those of 210Pb. 210Po and 210Pb dominate the radiation doses received via ingestion of wild berries and mushrooms in northern Finland, while in southern Finland the ingested dose is dominated by 137Cs from the Chernobyl fallout.

  14. The Boreal Virtual Forest. [CD-ROM].

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Indiana Univ.-Purdue Univ., Indianapolis.

    This CD-ROM is an educational CD-ROM aimed at classroom audiences in 5th grade and above. Using QuickTime Virtual Reality (QTVR), the Boreal Virtual Forest is designed so that students are able to see views from inside the central hardwood forest and look up or down or spin around 360 degrees. The program allows students to become familiar with…

  15. The Boreal Virtual Forest. [CD-ROM].

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Indiana Univ.-Purdue Univ., Indianapolis.

    This CD-ROM is an educational CD-ROM aimed at classroom audiences in 5th grade and above. Using QuickTime Virtual Reality (QTVR), the Boreal Virtual Forest is designed so that students are able to see views from inside the central hardwood forest and look up or down or spin around 360 degrees. The program allows students to become familiar with…

  16. Meso-Scale Hydrological Modeling Using Small Scale Parameterizations in a Discontinuous Permafrost Watershed in the Boreal Forest Ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Endalamaw, A. M.; Bolton, W. R.; Hinzman, L. D.; Morton, D.; Young, J. M.

    2014-12-01

    The sub-Arctic region lies in the transition zone between the warm temperate region to the south and the cold arctic region to the north. The sub-Arctic hosts sharply contrasting ecosystems that vary over short horizontal spatial scales due to the presence or absence of permafrost. In the discontinuous permafrost zone, the presence or absence of permafrost plays a dominant role to many hydrological processes including stream flow, soil moisture, and water storage dynamics. The distribution of permafrost also has a strong influence on ecosystem composition and function. The land cover and vegetation distribution is also an important parameter affecting the stream flow responses due to the large differences in the transpiration rates between coniferous and deciduous vegetation. As a result, accurate simulation of the hydrology in this region is challenging. The objectives of this study are to improve the parameterization of meso-scale hydrologic simulations in the discontinuous permafrost zone through fine-scale observation and modeling. Slope and aspect, derived from 30m Digital Elevation Model (DEM), are used as a proxy for permafrost distribution and vegetation composition. Small-scale parameterizations were conducted at the two sub-basins (area ~11km2 ) of the Caribou-Poker Creeks Research Watershed (CPCRW) using the Variable Infiltration Capacity (VIC) meso-scale hydrological model. The small scale parameterization simulation results indicate that slope and aspect based vegetation cover and soil parameter parameterization improve meso-scale hydrological modeling in these regions. In order to test the extent to which these small-scale parameterizations are valid, the Chena River Basin (area ~5,478 km2), located in Interior Alaska, is being simulated using these small-scale parameterizations. Aspect will be used as the proxy for the parameterization of vegetation cover and soil property. Results from the VIC simulation using the small scale parameterization will

  17. Nitrogen alters carbon dynamics during early succession in boreal forest

    Treesearch

    Steven D. Allison; Tracy B. Gartner; Michelle C. Mack; Krista McGuire; Kathleen. Treseder

    2010-01-01

    Boreal forests are an important source of wood products, and fertilizers could be used to improve forest yields, especially in nutrient poor regions of the boreal zone. With climate change, fire frequencies may increase, resulting in a larger fraction of the boreal landscape present in early successional stages. Since most fertilization studies have focused on mature...

  18. Remote estimation of net CO2 emission from boreal ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rogers, C. A.; Strachan, I. B.

    2010-12-01

    Hydroelectricity is the main source of power in the province of Quebec, Canada. While hydroelectricity is considered to be a relatively green source of energy, reservoir creation is a land use change that involves flooding terrestrial ecosystems and thus a loss of greenhouse gas (GHG) uptake as well as direct GHG emission from decomposing vegetation. Both the lost sink for GHGs and direct emission from the reservoir surface must be included in estimating the net GHG emission attributable to the reservoir’s construction. These emissions can be determined using techniques such as eddy covariance, however, such methods are often costly and time consuming, and require frequent access to remote locations. Remote sensing is able to provide spatially continuous data over large areas, minimizing the need for ground based measurements. We tested the ability of the photochemical reflectance index (PRI) and normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) to predict fluxes of carbon dioxide in areas representative of boreal forests and peatlands flooded by the Eastmain 1 hydroelectric reservoir in the James Bay region of Quebec, Canada. We collected spectral measurements from hand-held and helicopter-based platforms, as well as continuously monitored the indices PRI and NDVI from tower-mounted sensors at a forest and peatland site. We then compared the vegetation indices to net fluxes of carbon dioxide measured by eddy covariance at each site. PRI was related to fluxes at both the forest and peatland sites, suggesting it is possible to remotely estimate carbon dioxide uptake by vegetation in boreal forests and peatlands and thus greenhouse gas emissions resulting from land use changes in boreal regions, such as reservoir inundation.

  19. Global estimates of boreal forest carbon stocks and flux

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bradshaw, Corey J. A.; Warkentin, Ian G.

    2015-05-01

    The boreal ecosystem is an important global reservoir of stored carbon and a haven for diverse biological communities. The natural disturbance dynamics there have historically been driven by fire and insects, with human-mediated disturbances increasing faster than in other biomes globally. Previous research on the total boreal carbon stock and predictions of its future flux reveal high uncertainty in regional patterns. We reviewed and standardised this extensive body of quantitative literature to provide the most up-to-date and comprehensive estimates of the global carbon balance in the boreal forest. We also compiled century-scale predictions of the carbon budget flux. Our review and standardisation confirmed high uncertainty in the available data, but there is evidence that the region's total carbon stock has been underestimated. We found a total carbon store of 367.3 to 1715.8 Pg (1015 g), the mid-point of which (1095 Pg) is between 1.3 and 3.8 times larger than any previous mean estimates. Most boreal carbon resides in its soils and peatlands, although estimates are highly uncertain. We found evidence that the region might become a net carbon source following a reduction in carbon uptake rate from at least the 1980s. Given that the boreal potentially constitutes the largest terrestrial carbon source in the world, in one of the most rapidly warming parts of the globe (Walsh, 2014), how we manage these stocks will be influential on future climate dynamics.

  20. Modeling Climate-Biosphere Interactions in the Boreal Forest

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Frolking, Steve

    1998-01-01

    The overall goal of this BOREAS Program was to develop, test, and apply a model of the carbon balance of boreal forest sites with a significant groundcover component (moss or lichen). The basic question addressed with this model was: What is the sensitivity of the boreal forest carbon balance to weather variability? More specifically: What are the differences in the sensitivities of carbon gains (photosynthesis) and carbon losses (respiration) of the various components of the ecosystem? Are there different seasonalities to their sensitivities (e.g., warmer springs will have one effect, warmer summers a different effect)? What are the effects of different patterns of successive weather years (wet/dry, warm/cool)? What, for example, would be the difference in effects of two "warmer than normal" months-one with each day warmer than normal, and the other with three normal weeks and one very hot week? Due to weather variability, how "noisy" will any carbon flux or carbon pool signal be that we might use to try to detect change? The project resulted in the development of a new boreal forest ecosystem model. This model was the first model in the BOREAS project to look closely at the role of mosses in the ecosystem carbon balance, and also was the first model in the BOREAS project to look closely at interannual variability in carbon fluxes. Along with the work of many other groups, TE-19 modeling analysis pointed to the need for a second, longer field season in 1996, with particular focus on the spring and fall transitions and on ground vegetation. BOREAS groups TE-19 (Frolking), TGB-1 (Crill) & TGB-3 (Moore & Roulet) analyzed BOREAS data and other published and unpublished data to develop a relationship between peatland ecosystem productivity and incoming radiation, which is quite distinct from the upland ecosystem relationships observed in other studies.

  1. Exchange of volatile organic compounds in the boreal forest floor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aaltonen, Hermanni; Bäck, Jaana; Pumpanen, Jukka; Pihlatie, Mari; Hakola, Hannele; Hellén, Heidi; Aalto, Juho; Heinonsalo, Jussi; Kajos, Maija K.; Kolari, Pasi; Taipale, Risto; Vesala, Timo

    2013-04-01

    Terrestrial ecosystems, mainly plants, emit large amounts of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) into the atmosphere. In addition to plants, VOCs also have less-known sources, such as soil. VOCs are a very diverse group of reactive compounds, including terpenoids, alcohols, aldehydes and ketones. Due to their high reactivity, VOCs take part in formation and growth of secondary organic aerosols in the atmosphere and thus affect also Earth's radiation balance (Kulmala et al. 2004). We have studied boreal soil and forest floor VOC fluxes with chamber and snow gradient techniques we were developed. Spatial and temporal variability in VOC fluxes was studied with year-round measurements in the field and the sources of boreal soil VOCs in the laboratory with fungal isolates. Determination of the compounds was performed mass spectrometrically. Our results reveal that VOCs from soil are mainly emitted by living roots, above- and belowground litter and microbes. The strongest source appears to be litter, in which both plant residuals and decomposers play a role in the emissions. Soil fungi showed high emissions of lighter VOCs, like acetone, acetaldehyde and methanol, from isolates. Temperature and moisture are the most critical physical factors driving VOC fluxes. Since the environment in boreal forests undergoes strong seasonal changes, the VOC flux strength of the forest floor varies markedly during the year, being highest in spring and autumn. The high spatial heterogeneity of the forest floor was also clearly visible in VOC fluxes. The fluxes of other trace gases (CO2, CH4 and N2O) from soil, which are also related to the soil biological activity and physical conditions, did not show correlations with the VOC fluxes. These results indicate that emissions of VOCs from the boreal forest floor account for as much as several tens of percent, depending on the season, of the total forest ecosystem VOC emissions. This emphasises that forest floor compartment should be taken into

  2. Long-term boreal forest dynamics and disturbances: a multi-proxy approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stivrins, Normunds; Aakala, Tuomas; Kuuluvainen, Timo; Pasanen, Leena; Ilvonen, Liisa; Holmström, Lasse; Seppä, Heikki

    2017-04-01

    The boreal forest provides a variety of ecosystem services that are threatened under the ongoing climate warming. Along with the climate, there are several factors (fire, human-impact, pathogens), which influence boreal forest dynamics. Combination of short and long-term studies allowing complex assessment of forest response to natural abiotic and biotic stress factors is necessary for sustainable management of the boreal forest now and in the future. The ongoing EBOR (Ecological history and long-term dynamics of the boreal forest ecosystem) project integrates forest ecological and palaeoecological approaches to study boreal forest dynamics and disturbances. Using pollen, non-pollen palynomorphs, micro- and macrocharcoal, tree rings and fire scars, we analysed forest dynamics at stand-scale by sampling small forest hollows (small paludified depressions) and the surrounding forest stands in Finland and western Russia. Using charcoal data, we estimated a fire return interval of 320 years for the Russian sites, and, based on the fungi Neurospora that can grow on charred tree bark after a low-intensity fire, we were able to distinguish low- and high-intensity fire-events. In addition to the influence of fire events and/or fire regime changes, we further assessed potential relationships between tree species and herbivore presence and pathogens. As an example of such a relationship, our preliminary findings indicated a negative relationship between Picea and fungi Lasiosphaeria (caudata), which occurred during times of Picea decline.

  3. Using Landsat data to assess fire and burn severity in the North American boreal forest region: an overview and summary of results

    Treesearch

    Nancy H.F. French; Eric S. Kasischke; Ronald J. Hall; Karen A. Murphy; David L. Verbyla; Elizabeth E. Hoy; Jennifer L. Allen

    2008-01-01

    There has been considerable interest in the recent literature regarding the assessment of post-fire effects on forested areas within the North American boreal forest. Assessing the physical and ecological effects of fire in boreal forests has far-reaching implications for a variety of ecosystem processes -- such as post-fire forest succession -- and land management...

  4. Lichen conservation in heavily managed boreal forests.

    PubMed

    McMullin, Richard Troy; Thompson, Ian D; Newmaster, Steven G

    2013-10-01

    Lichens are an important component of the boreal forest, where they are long lived, tend to accumulate in older stands, and are a major food source for the threatened woodland caribou (Rangifer tarandus caribou). To be fully sustainable, silvicultural practices in the boreal forest must include the conservation of ecological integrity. Dominant forest management practices, however, have short-term negative effects on lichen diversity, particularly the application of herbicides. To better understand the long-term effects of forest management, we examined lichen regeneration in 35 mixed black spruce (Picea mariana) and jack pine (Pinus banksiana) forest stands across northern Ontario to determine recovery following logging and postharvest silvicultural practices. Our forest stands were 25-40 years old and had undergone 3 common sivilcultural treatments that included harvested and planted; harvested, planted, and treated with N-[phosphonomethyl] glycine (glyphosate); and harvested, planted, and treated with 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4-D). Forest stands with herbicide treatments had lower lichen biomass and higher beta and gamma diversity than planted stands that were not treated chemically or control stands. In northwestern Ontario, planted stands that were not treated chemically had significantly greater (p < 0.05) alpha diversity than stands treated with herbicides or control stands. Our results show that common silvicultural practices do not emulate natural disturbances caused by wildfires in the boreal forest for the lichen community. We suggest a reduction in the amount of chemical application be considered in areas where lichen biomass is likely to be high and where the recovery of woodland caribou is an objective. © 2013 Society for Conservation Biology.

  5. A physiological basis for biosphere-atmosphere interactions in the boreal forest: an overview.

    PubMed

    Margolis, Hank A.; Ryan, Michael G.

    1997-01-01

    Interdisciplinary field experiments for global change research are large, intensive efforts that study the controls on fluxes of carbon, water, trace gases, and energy between terrestrial ecosystems and the atmosphere at a range of spatial scales. Forest ecophysiology can make significant contributions to such efforts by measuring, interpreting, and modeling these fluxes for the individual components of forest ecosystems and then integrating the results into holistic ecosystem process models. The Boreal Ecosystem-Atmosphere Study (BOREAS) was undertaken because of the importance of the boreal forest biome to various global change issues. The study was conducted from 1993 to 1996 at sites in Saskatchewan and Manitoba, Canada. Results have shown that physiological processes of plants in the boreal forest can have large-scale consequences. For example, the composition of tree species strongly influences flux rates, with deciduous species having much higher carbon and water fluxes than coniferous species. Additionally, physiological limitations to transpiration in boreal conifers, even when soil water is abundant, reduces latent heat flux and increases sensible heat flux over large regions. This physiological control of transpiration can increase the depth of the atmospheric boundary layer on warm spring days to a level similar to that found in desert biomes. This special issue features 10 articles that address various aspects of the physiological basis of biosphere-atmosphere interactions in the boreal forest. The articles emphasize the environmental controls on water flux, carbon flux, and ecosystem productivity.

  6. Restoring Forested Wetland Ecosystems

    Treesearch

    John A. Stanturf; Emile S. Gardiner; Melvin L. Warren

    2003-01-01

    Forests as natural systems are intrinsically linked to the sustainability of fresh-water systems. Efforts worldwide to restore forest ecosystems seek to counteract centuries of forest conversion to agriculture and other uses. Afforestation, the practice of regenerating forests on land deforested for agriculture or other uses, is occurring at an intense pace in the...

  7. Net Primary Production of boreal forests in the Krasnoyarsk Territory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Larko, Alexander; Chernetskiy, Maxim; Shevyrnogov, Anatoly

    One of the most important characteristics used in the biosphere change control is net primary production dynamics. (NPP) NPP shows the amount of pure carbon fixed in plants for a definite time period, essentially, this indicator reflects the intensity of a carbon biochemical cycle. Being the main indicator of the ecosystem condition, NPP has great significance, since it is also an indicator of biosphere carbon flux intensity. Its use is important for ecological investigations, carbon cycle calculation and the distribution of natural recourses. Ground true ecosystems determine most of seasonal and annual changes in the atmospheric CO2 concentration. Satellite methods of investigation are known to be effectively used for the calculation of the global NPP distribution. In its turn, the study of boreal forest NPP dynamics is required to introduce clarity into global models and to understand their role in the carbon cycle. At present, there is a number of calculation models for obtaining NPP. In the given work, an estimate of NPP for boreal forests of the Krasnoyarsk Territory is made. For the calculation, the GloPEM model employing TERRA/MODIS and TOMS data has been used. The obtained data have been compared with satellite temperature and ground true climatic data and, also, with the forest vegetation maps. The maps contained data about the biomass amount and the forest species composition, which allowed one to obtain the results showing the nonuniformity of NPP distribution depending on the climatic conditions, species composition and the latitude of the objects under study.

  8. Microwave dielectric properties of boreal forest trees

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Xu, G.; Ahern, F.; Brown, J.

    1993-01-01

    The knowledge of vegetation dielectric behavior is important in studying the scattering properties of the vegetation canopy and radar backscatter modelling. Until now, a limited number of studies have been published on the dielectric properties in the boreal forest context. This paper presents the results of the dielectric constant as a function of depth in the trunks of two common boreal forest species: black spruce and trembling aspen, obtained from field measurements. The microwave penetration depth for the two species is estimated at C, L, and P bands and used to derive the equivalent dielectric constant for the trunk as a whole. The backscatter modelling is carried out in the case of black spruce and the results are compared with the JPL AIRSAR data. The sensitivity of the backscatter coefficient to the dielectric constant is also examined.

  9. Microwave dielectric properties of boreal forest trees

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Xu, G.; Ahern, F.; Brown, J.

    1993-01-01

    The knowledge of vegetation dielectric behavior is important in studying the scattering properties of the vegetation canopy and radar backscatter modelling. Until now, a limited number of studies have been published on the dielectric properties in the boreal forest context. This paper presents the results of the dielectric constant as a function of depth in the trunks of two common boreal forest species: black spruce and trembling aspen, obtained from field measurements. The microwave penetration depth for the two species is estimated at C, L, and P bands and used to derive the equivalent dielectric constant for the trunk as a whole. The backscatter modelling is carried out in the case of black spruce and the results are compared with the JPL AIRSAR data. The sensitivity of the backscatter coefficient to the dielectric constant is also examined.

  10. Simulating restoration strategies for a southern boreal forest landscape with complex land ownership patterns

    Treesearch

    Douglas J. Shinneman; Meredith W. Cornett; Brian J. Palik

    2010-01-01

    Restoring altered forest landscapes toward their ranges of natural variability (RNV) may enhance ecosystem sustainability and resiliency, but such efforts can be hampered by complex land ownership and management patterns. We evaluated restoration potential for southern-boreal forests in the ~2.1 million ha Border Lakes Region of northern Minnesota (U.S.A.) and...

  11. Aerosol volatility in a boreal forest environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Häkkinen, S. A. K.; ńijälä, M.; Lehtipalo, K.; Junninen, H.; Virkkula, A.; Worsnop, D. R.; Kulmala, M.; Petäjä, T.; Riipinen, I.

    2012-04-01

    Climate and health effects of atmospheric aerosols are determined by their properties such as their chemical composition. Aerosol chemical composition can be studied indirectly by measuring volatility of aerosol particles. The volatility of submicron aerosol particles (20-500 nm) was studied in a boreal forest site at SMEAR II (Station for Measuring Ecosystem-Atmosphere Relations II) station (Vesala et al., 1998) in Hyytiälä, Finland, during 01/2008-05/2010. The instrument used for the measurements was VDMPS (Volatility Differential Mobility Particle Sizer), which consists of two separate instruments: DMPS (Differential Mobility Particle Sizer, Aalto et al., 2001) and TD (Thermodenuder, Wehner et al., 2002). Aerosol evaporation was examined by heating the aerosol and comparing the total aerosol mass before and after heating. In the VDMPS system ambient aerosol sample was heated up to temperatures ranging from 80 °C to 280 °C. The higher the heating temperature was the more aerosol material was evaporated. There was a non-volatile residual present in aerosol particles when heated up to 280 °C. This residual explained (20±8)% of the total aerosol mass. Aerosol non-volatile mass fraction was highest during winter and smallest during summer months. The role of black carbon in the observed non-volatile residual was determined. Black carbon explained 40 to 90% of the non-volatile mass. Especially during colder seasons noticeable amount of non-volatile material, something else than black carbon, was observed. According to Kalberer et al. (2004) some atmospheric organic species can form polymers that have high evaporation temperatures. Also low-volatile organic salts may contribute to the non-volatile aerosol (Smith et al., 2010). Aerosol mass composition measured directly with AMS (Aerosol Mass Spectrometer, Jayne et al., 2000) was analyzed in order to examine the properties of the non-volatile material (other than black carbon). The AMS measurements were performed

  12. Relating Radar Backscatter to Boreal Forest Canopy Parameters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Saatchi, Sasan

    1995-01-01

    During the first intensive field campaign for the Boreal Ecosystem Atmospheric Study (BOREAS) in August of 1993, AIRSAR data were acquired over the entire BOREAS study area. On of the objectives of the AIRSAR deployment was to examine the sensitivity of the radar signal to vegetation type and biomass distribution in the boreal forest and to develop algorithms for inferring vegetation parameters. During the experiment a set of ground measurements were also made to support the AIRSAR data analysis. The dominant stands in the study area consist of black spruce, young jack pine, old jack pine, and aspen. These stands represent a wide range of biomass and canopy architectural variations which can be distinguished in SAR images.

  13. Diurnal, seasonal and interannual variability of carbon isotope discrimination at the canopy level in response to environmental factors in a boreal forest ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Chen, Baozhang; Chen, Jing M

    2007-10-01

    Accurate estimation of temporal and spatial variations in photosynthetic discrimination of 13C is critical to carbon cycle research. In this study, a combined ecosystem-boundary layer isotope model, which was satisfactorily validated against intensive campaign data, was used to explore the temporal variability of carbon discrimination in response to environmental driving factors in a boreal ecosystem in the vicinity of Fraserdale Tower, Ontario, Canada (49 degrees 52'30''N, 81 degrees 34'12''W). A 14 year (1990-1996 and 1998-2004) hourly CO2 concentration and meteorological record measured on this tower was used for this purpose. The 14 year mean yearly diurnal amplitude of canopy-level discrimination Delta(canopy) was computed to be 2.8 +/- 0.5 per thousand, and the overall diurnal cycle showed that the greatest Delta(canopy) values occurred at dawn and dusk, while the minima generally appeared in mid-afternoon. The average annual Delta(canopy) varied from 18.3 to 19.7 per thousand with the 14 year average of 19 +/- 0.4 per thousand. The overall seasonality of Delta(canopy) showed a gradually increasing trend from leaf emergence in May-September and with a slight decrease at the end of the growing season in October. Delta(canopy) was negatively correlated to vapour pressure deficit and air temperature across hourly to decadal timescales. A strong climatic control on stomatal regulation of ecosystem isotope discrimination was found in this study.

  14. Yeast communities in Sphagnum phyllosphere along the temperature-moisture ecocline in the boreal forest-swamp ecosystem and description of Candida sphagnicola sp. nov.

    PubMed

    Kachalkin, Aleksey V; Yurkov, Andrey M

    2012-06-01

    The effects of the temperature-moisture factors on the phylloplane yeast communities inhabiting Sphagnum mosses were studied along the transition from a boreal forest to a swamp biotope at the Central Forest State Biosphere Reserve (Tver region, Russia). We tested the hypothesis that microclimatic parameters affect yeast community composition and structure even on a rather small spatial scale. Using a conventional plating technique we isolated and identified by molecular methods a total of 15 species of yeasts. Total yeast counts and species richness values did not depend on environmental factors, although yeast community composition and structure did. On average, Sphagnum in the swamp biotope supported a more evenly structured yeast community. Relative abundance of ascomycetous yeasts was significantly higher on swamp moss. Rhodotorula mucilaginosa dominated in the spruce forest and Cryptococcus magnus was more abundant in the swamp. Our study confirmed the low occurrence of tremellaceous yeasts in the Sphagnum phyllosphere. Of the few isolated ascomycetous yeast and yeast-like species, some were differentiated from hitherto known species in physiological tests and phylogenetic analyses. We describe one of them as Candida sphagnicola and designate KBP Y-3887(T) (=CBS 11774(T) = VKPM Y-3566(T) = MUCL 53590(T)) as the type strain. The new species was registered in MycoBank under MB 563443.

  15. Thermokarst rates intensify due to climate change and forest fragmentation in an Alaskan boreal forest lowland.

    PubMed

    Lara, Mark J; Genet, Hélène; McGuire, Anthony D; Euskirchen, Eugénie S; Zhang, Yujin; Brown, Dana R N; Jorgenson, Mark T; Romanovsky, Vladimir; Breen, Amy; Bolton, William R

    2016-02-01

    Lowland boreal forest ecosystems in Alaska are dominated by wetlands comprised of a complex mosaic of fens, collapse-scar bogs, low shrub/scrub, and forests growing on elevated ice-rich permafrost soils. Thermokarst has affected the lowlands of the Tanana Flats in central Alaska for centuries, as thawing permafrost collapses forests that transition to wetlands. Located within the discontinuous permafrost zone, this region has significantly warmed over the past half-century, and much of these carbon-rich permafrost soils are now within ~0.5 °C of thawing. Increased permafrost thaw in lowland boreal forests in response to warming may have consequences for the climate system. This study evaluates the trajectories and potential drivers of 60 years of forest change in a landscape subjected to permafrost thaw in unburned dominant forest types (paper birch and black spruce) associated with location on elevated permafrost plateau and across multiple time periods (1949, 1978, 1986, 1998, and 2009) using historical and contemporary aerial and satellite images for change detection. We developed (i) a deterministic statistical model to evaluate the potential climatic controls on forest change using gradient boosting and regression tree analysis, and (ii) a 30 × 30 m land cover map of the Tanana Flats to estimate the potential landscape-level losses of forest area due to thermokarst from 1949 to 2009. Over the 60-year period, we observed a nonlinear loss of birch forests and a relatively continuous gain of spruce forest associated with thermokarst and forest succession, while gradient boosting/regression tree models identify precipitation and forest fragmentation as the primary factors controlling birch and spruce forest change, respectively. Between 1950 and 2009, landscape-level analysis estimates a transition of ~15 km² or ~7% of birch forests to wetlands, where the greatest change followed warm periods. This work highlights that the vulnerability and resilience of

  16. Evolution of Canada's Boreal Forest Spatial Patterns as Seen from Space.

    PubMed

    Pickell, Paul D; Coops, Nicholas C; Gergel, Sarah E; Andison, David W; Marshall, Peter L

    2016-01-01

    Understanding the development of landscape patterns over broad spatial and temporal scales is a major contribution to ecological sciences and is a critical area of research for forested land management. Boreal forests represent an excellent case study for such research because these forests have undergone significant changes over recent decades. We analyzed the temporal trends of four widely-used landscape pattern indices for boreal forests of Canada: forest cover, largest forest patch index, forest edge density, and core (interior) forest cover. The indices were computed over landscape extents ranging from 5,000 ha (n = 18,185) to 50,000 ha (n = 1,662) and across nine major ecozones of Canada. We used 26 years of Landsat satellite imagery to derive annualized trends of the landscape pattern indices. The largest declines in forest cover, largest forest patch index, and core forest cover were observed in the Boreal Shield, Boreal Plain, and Boreal Cordillera ecozones. Forest edge density increased at all landscape extents for all ecozones. Rapidly changing landscapes, defined as the 90th percentile of forest cover change, were among the most forested initially and were characterized by four times greater decrease in largest forest patch index, three times greater increase in forest edge density, and four times greater decrease in core forest cover compared with all 50,000 ha landscapes. Moreover, approximately 18% of all 50,000 ha landscapes did not change due to a lack of disturbance. The pattern database results provide important context for forest management agencies committed to implementing ecosystem-based management strategies.

  17. Evolution of Canada’s Boreal Forest Spatial Patterns as Seen from Space

    PubMed Central

    Pickell, Paul D.; Coops, Nicholas C.; Gergel, Sarah E.; Andison, David W.; Marshall, Peter L.

    2016-01-01

    Understanding the development of landscape patterns over broad spatial and temporal scales is a major contribution to ecological sciences and is a critical area of research for forested land management. Boreal forests represent an excellent case study for such research because these forests have undergone significant changes over recent decades. We analyzed the temporal trends of four widely-used landscape pattern indices for boreal forests of Canada: forest cover, largest forest patch index, forest edge density, and core (interior) forest cover. The indices were computed over landscape extents ranging from 5,000 ha (n = 18,185) to 50,000 ha (n = 1,662) and across nine major ecozones of Canada. We used 26 years of Landsat satellite imagery to derive annualized trends of the landscape pattern indices. The largest declines in forest cover, largest forest patch index, and core forest cover were observed in the Boreal Shield, Boreal Plain, and Boreal Cordillera ecozones. Forest edge density increased at all landscape extents for all ecozones. Rapidly changing landscapes, defined as the 90th percentile of forest cover change, were among the most forested initially and were characterized by four times greater decrease in largest forest patch index, three times greater increase in forest edge density, and four times greater decrease in core forest cover compared with all 50,000 ha landscapes. Moreover, approximately 18% of all 50,000 ha landscapes did not change due to a lack of disturbance. The pattern database results provide important context for forest management agencies committed to implementing ecosystem-based management strategies. PMID:27383055

  18. Fire severity influences the response of soil microbes to a boreal forest fire

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holden, Sandra R.; Rogers, Brendan M.; Treseder, Kathleen K.; Randerson, James T.

    2016-03-01

    Wildfire activity is projected to increase in boreal forests as a result of climate warming. The consequences of increased wildfire activity for soil carbon (C) storage in boreal forests may depend on the sensitivity of soil microbes to fire severity, but microbial responses to boreal forest fire severity are not well known. Here, we combine remote sensing of fire severity and field sampling to characterize the response of soil microbial biomass per g soil, microbial respiration of CO2 per g soil, and fungal groups to fire severity in a boreal forest ecosystem. We used remote sensing measurements of differenced normalized burn ratio from Landsat as a measure of fire severity. Our results demonstrate that fire severity controls soil microbial responses to boreal forest fires. In comparison to unburned stands, burned stands had a 52% and 56% reduction in soil microbial biomass and basal respiration, respectively. Within burned stands, we found that microbial biomass and basal respiration significantly declined with increasing fire severity. In addition, mycorrhizal taxa and basidiomycetes displayed particularly low tolerances for severe fire. Although wildfires result in the immediate loss of soil C, our study provides evidence that decreases in microbial biomass and respiration following high severity fires may reduce the capacity of the soil microbial community to decompose soil C over longer time scales. Therefore, models of C cycle responses to climate warming may need to represent the sensitivity of microbial biomass and fungal community composition to fire severity in boreal forests.

  19. Fire Severity Influences the Response of Soil Microbes to a Boreal Forest Fire

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Treseder, K. K.; Holden, S. R.; Rogers, B. M.; Randerson, J. T.

    2016-12-01

    Wildfire activity is projected to increase in boreal forests as a result of climate warming. The consequences of increased wildfire activity for soil carbon (C) storage in boreal forests may depend on the sensitivity of soil microbes to fire severity, but microbial responses to boreal forest fire severity are not well known. Here, we combine remote sensing of fire severity and field sampling to characterize the response of soil microbial biomass per g soil, microbial respiration of CO2 per g soil, and fungal groups to fire severity in a boreal forest ecosystem. We used remote sensing measurements of differenced normalized burn ratio (dNBR) from Landsat as a measure of fire severity. Our results demonstrate that fire severity controls soil microbial responses to boreal forest fires. In comparison to unburned stands, burned stands had a 52% and 56% reduction in soil microbial biomass and basal respiration, respectively. Within burned stands, we found that microbial biomass and basal respiration significantly declined with increasing fire severity. In addition, mycorrhizal taxa and basidiomycetes displayed particularly low tolerances for severe fire. Although wildfires result in the immediate loss of soil C, our study provides evidence that decreases in microbial biomass and respiration following high severity fires may reduce the capacity of the soil microbial community to decompose soil C over longer time scales. Therefore, models of C cycle responses to climate warming may need to represent the sensitivity of microbial biomass and fungal community composition to fire severity in boreal forests.

  20. Thermokarst Rates Intensify Due to Climate Change and Forest Fragmentation in an Alaskan Boreal Forest Lowland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lara, M. J.; Genet, H.; McGuire, A. D.; Euskirchen, E. S.; Zhang, Y.; Brown, D. N.; Jorgenson, T.; Romanovsky, V. E.; Breen, A. L.; Bolton, W. R.

    2015-12-01

    Lowland boreal forest ecosystems in Alaska are dominated by wetlands comprised of a complex mosaic of fens, collapse scar-bogs, low shrub/scrub, and forests growing on elevated ice rich permafrost soils. Thermokarst has affected the lowlands of the Tanana Flats in central Alaska for centuries, as thawing permafrost collapses forests that transition to wetlands. Located within the discontinuous permafrost zone, this region has significantly warmed over the past half-century, and much of these carbon-rich permafrost soils are now within ~0.5o C of thawing. Increases in the collapse of lowland boreal forests in response to warming may have consequences for the climate system. This study evaluates the trajectories and potential drivers of 60 years of forest change in a landscape subjected to permafrost thaw in unburned dominant forest types (paper birch and black spruce) associated with location on elevated permafrost plateau and across multiple time periods (1949, 1978, 1986, 1998 and 2009) using historical and contemporary aerial and satellite images for change detection. We developed (i) a deterministic statistical model to evaluate the potential climatic controls on forest change using gradient boosting and regression tree analysis, and (ii) a 30x30 m land cover map of the Tanana Flats to estimate the potential landscape-level losses of forest area due to thermokarst from 1949 to 2009. Over the 60-year period, we observed a nonlinear loss of birch forests and a relatively continuous gain of spruce forest associated with thermokarst and forest succession, respectively. Gradient boosting and regression tree models identify precipitation and forest fragmentation as the primary factors controlling birch and spruce forest change, respectively. Between 1950-2009 landscape-level analysis estimates a transition of ~15 km² of birch forest area to wetlands on the Tanana Flats, where the greatest change followed warm periods. This work highlights the vulnerability of lowland

  1. Developing a Student-Scientist Partnership: Boreal Forest Watch.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Spencer, Shannon; Huczek, George; Muir, Bradley

    1998-01-01

    Explains the functions of the Boreal Forest Watch including the scope, level of student involvement, goals, and nature of the data collection. Details student involvement at the forest site. Contains 18 references. (DDR)

  2. Ecology of Canada lynx in southern boreal forests [Chapter 13

    Treesearch

    Keith B. Aubry; Gary M. Koehler; John R. Squires

    2000-01-01

    Canada lynx occur throughout boreal forests of North America, but ecological conditions in southern regions differ in many respects from those in Canada and Alaska. To evaluate the extent to which lynx ecology and population biology may differ between these regions, we review existing information from southern boreal forests and compare our findings to...

  3. The 1990 forest ecosystem dynamics multisensor aircraft campaign

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Williams, Darrel L.; Ranson, K. Jon

    1991-01-01

    The overall objective of the Forest Ecosystem Dynamics (FED) research activity is to develop a better understanding of the dynamics of forest ecosystem evolution over a variety of temporal and spatial scales. Primary emphasis is being placed on assessing the ecosystem dynamics associated with the transition zone between northern hardwood forests in eastern North America and the predominantly coniferous forests of the more northerly boreal biome. The approach is to combine ground-based, airborne, and satellite observations with an integrated forest pattern and process model which is being developed to link together existing models of forest growth and development, soil processes, and radiative transfer.

  4. Climate-Induced Boreal Forest Change: Predictions versus Current Observations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Soja, Amber J.; Tchebakova, Nadezda M.; French, Nancy H. F.; Flannigan, Michael D.; Shugart, Herman H.; Stocks, Brian J.; Sukhinin, Anatoly I.; Parfenova, E. I.; Chapin, F. Stuart, III; Stackhouse, Paul W., Jr.

    2007-01-01

    For about three decades, there have been many predictions of the potential ecological response in boreal regions to the currently warmer conditions. In essence, a widespread, naturally occurring experiment has been conducted over time. In this paper, we describe previously modeled predictions of ecological change in boreal Alaska, Canada and Russia, and then we investigate potential evidence of current climate-induced change. For instance, ecological models have suggested that warming will induce the northern and upslope migration of the treeline and an alteration in the current mosaic structure of boreal forests. We present evidence of the migration of keystone ecosystems in the upland and lowland treeline of mountainous regions across southern Siberia. Ecological models have also predicted a moisture-stress-related dieback in white spruce trees in Alaska, and current investigations show that as temperatures increase, white spruce tree growth is declining. Additionally, it was suggested that increases in infestation and wildfire disturbance would be catalysts that precipitate the alteration of the current mosaic forest composition. In Siberia, five of the last seven years have resulted in extreme fire seasons, and extreme fire years have also been more frequent in both Alaska and Canada. In addition, Alaska has experienced extreme and geographically expansive multi-year outbreaks of the spruce beetle, which had been previously limited by the cold, moist environment. We suggest that there is substantial evidence throughout the circumboreal region to conclude that the biosphere within the boreal terrestrial environment has already responded to the transient effects of climate change. Additionally, temperature increases and warming-induced change are progressing faster than had been predicted in some regions, suggesting a potential non-linear rapid response to changes in climate, as opposed to the predicted slow linear response to climate change.

  5. Modelling black spruce primary production and carbon allocation in the Quebec boreal forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gennaretti, Fabio; Guiot, Joel; Berninger, Frank; Boucher, Etienne; Gea-Izquierdo, Guillermo

    2017-04-01

    Boreal ecosystems are crucial carbon stores that must be urgently quantified and preserved. Their future evolution is extremely important for the global carbon budget. Here, we will show the progresses achieved with the MAIDEN forest ecophysiological model in simulating carbon fluxes of black spruce (Picea mariana (Mill.) B.S.P.) forests, the most representative ecosystem of the North American boreal biome. Starting from daily minimum-maximum air temperature, precipitation and CO2 atmospheric concentration, MAIDEN models the phenological (5 phenological phases are simulated each year) and meteorological controls on gross primary production (GPP) and carbon allocation to stem. The model is being calibrated on eddy covariance and tree-ring data. We will discuss the model's performance and the modifications introduced in MAIDEN to adapt the model to temperature sensitive forests of the boreal region.

  6. Large Impacts of Climatic Warming on Growth of Boreal Forests since 1960

    PubMed Central

    Kauppi, Pekka E.; Posch, Maximilian; Pirinen, Pentti

    2014-01-01

    Boreal forests are sensitive to climatic warming, because low temperatures hold back ecosystem processes, such as the mobilization of nitrogen in soils. A greening of the boreal landscape has been observed using remote sensing, and the seasonal amplitude of CO2 in the northern hemisphere has increased, indicating warming effects on ecosystem productivity. However, field observations on responses of ecosystem productivity have been lacking on a large sub-biome scale. Here we report a significant increase in the annual growth of boreal forests in Finland in response to climatic warming, especially since 1990. This finding is obtained by linking meteorological records and forest inventory data on an area between 60° and 70° northern latitude. An additional increase in growth has occurred in response to changes in other drivers, such as forest management, nitrogen deposition and/or CO2 concentration. A similar warming impact can be expected in the entire boreal zone, where warming takes place. Given the large size of the boreal biome – more than ten million km2– important climate feedbacks are at stake, such as the future carbon balance, transpiration and albedo. PMID:25383552

  7. Large impacts of climatic warming on growth of boreal forests since 1960.

    PubMed

    Kauppi, Pekka E; Posch, Maximilian; Pirinen, Pentti

    2014-01-01

    Boreal forests are sensitive to climatic warming, because low temperatures hold back ecosystem processes, such as the mobilization of nitrogen in soils. A greening of the boreal landscape has been observed using remote sensing, and the seasonal amplitude of CO2 in the northern hemisphere has increased, indicating warming effects on ecosystem productivity. However, field observations on responses of ecosystem productivity have been lacking on a large sub-biome scale. Here we report a significant increase in the annual growth of boreal forests in Finland in response to climatic warming, especially since 1990. This finding is obtained by linking meteorological records and forest inventory data on an area between 60° and 70° northern latitude. An additional increase in growth has occurred in response to changes in other drivers, such as forest management, nitrogen deposition and/or CO2 concentration. A similar warming impact can be expected in the entire boreal zone, where warming takes place. Given the large size of the boreal biome - more than ten million km2- important climate feedbacks are at stake, such as the future carbon balance, transpiration and albedo.

  8. Contrasting soil thermal responses to fire in Alaskan tundra and boreal forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jiang, Yueyang; Rocha, Adrian V.; O'Donnell, Jonathan A.; Drysdale, Jessica A.; Rastetter, Edward B.; Shaver, Gaius R.; Zhuang, Qianlai

    2015-02-01

    Recent fire activity throughout Alaska has increased the need to understand postfire impacts on soils and permafrost vulnerability. Our study utilized data and modeling from a permafrost and ecosystem gradient to develop a mechanistic understanding of the short- and long-term impacts of tundra and boreal forest fires on soil thermal dynamics. Fires influenced a variety of factors that altered the surface energy budget, soil moisture, and the organic-layer thickness with the overall effect of increasing soil temperatures and thaw depth. The postfire thickness of the soil organic layer and its impact on soil thermal conductivity was the most important factor determining postfire soil temperatures and thaw depth. Boreal and tundra ecosystems underlain by permafrost experienced smaller postfire soil temperature increases than the nonpermafrost boreal forest from the direct and indirect effects of permafrost on drainage, soil moisture, and vegetation flammability. Permafrost decreased the loss of the insulating soil organic layer, decreased soil drying, increased surface water pooling, and created a significant heat sink to buffer postfire soil temperature and thaw depth changes. Ecosystem factors also played a role in determining postfire thaw depth with boreal forests taking several decades longer to recover their soil thermal properties than tundra. These factors resulted in tundra being less sensitive to postfire soil thermal changes than the nonpermafrost boreal forest. These results suggest that permafrost and soil organic carbon will be more vulnerable to fire as climate warms.

  9. Phenology cameras observing boreal ecosystems of Finland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peltoniemi, Mikko; Böttcher, Kristin; Aurela, Mika; Kolari, Pasi; Tanis, Cemal Melih; Linkosalmi, Maiju; Loehr, John; Metsämäki, Sari; Nadir Arslan, Ali

    2016-04-01

    Cameras have become useful tools for monitoring seasonality of ecosystems. Low-cost cameras facilitate validation of other measurements and allow extracting some key ecological features and moments from image time series. We installed a network of phenology cameras at selected ecosystem research sites in Finland. Cameras were installed above, on the level, or/and below the canopies. Current network hosts cameras taking time lapse images in coniferous and deciduous forests as well as at open wetlands offering thus possibilities to monitor various phenological and time-associated events and elements. In this poster, we present our camera network and give examples of image series use for research. We will show results about the stability of camera derived color signals, and based on that discuss about the applicability of cameras in monitoring time-dependent phenomena. We will also present results from comparisons between camera-derived color signal time series and daily satellite-derived time series (NVDI, NDWI, and fractional snow cover) from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectrometer (MODIS) at selected spruce and pine forests and in a wetland. We will discuss the applicability of cameras in supporting phenological observations derived from satellites, by considering the possibility of cameras to monitor both above and below canopy phenology and snow.

  10. Vertical and seasonal dynamics of fungal communities in boreal Scots pine forest soil.

    PubMed

    Santalahti, Minna; Sun, Hui; Jumpponen, Ari; Pennanen, Taina; Heinonsalo, Jussi

    2016-11-01

    Fungal communities are important for carbon (C) transformations in boreal forests that are one of the largest C pools in terrestrial ecosystems, warranting thus further investigation of fungal community dynamics in time and space. We investigated fungal diversity and community composition seasonally and across defined soil horizons in boreal Scots pine forest in Finland using 454 pyrosequencing. We collected a total of 120 samples from five vertical soil horizons monthly from March to October; in March, under snow. Boreal forest soil generally harbored diverse fungal communities across soil horizons. The communities shifted drastically and rapidly over time. In late winter, saprotrophs dominated the community and were replaced by ectomycorrhizal fungi during the growing season. Our studies are among the first to dissect the spatial and temporal dynamics in boreal forest ecosystems and highlights the ecological importance of vertically distinct communities and their rapid seasonal dynamics. As climate change is predicted to result in warmer and longer snow-free winter seasons, as well as increase the rooting depth of trees in boreal forest, the seasonal and vertical distribution of fungal communities may change. These changes are likely to affect the organic matter decomposition by the soil-inhabiting fungi and thus alter organic C pools.

  11. The Recovery of Net Ecosystem Productivity and Water Use Efficiency of a Harvested Aspen Forest in the Western Boreal Plain, Alberta, Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petrone, R. M.; Giroux, K.; Brown, S. M.; Devito, K. J.; Chasmer, L. E.

    2011-12-01

    The Utikuma Region Study Area (URSA) is located in north-central Alberta, Canada, in a region where aspen (Populus Tremuloides Michx.) dominate the upland vegetation of the Western Boreal Plain (WBP). Due to the heterogeneity of the surficial geology as well as the sub-humid climate where the water balance is dominated by evapotranspiration, the carbon balance across this landscape is highly variable. Moreover, the upland aspen regions represent significant stores of carbon. More recently, aspen stands have become valuable commercial resources for pulp and paper processing. These stands are harvested through clear cutting and are generally left to regenerate on their own, a process which occurs rapidly in clonal species like aspen. At URSA, three eddy covariance towers were setup during the length of the growing seasons of 2005-2009 to investigate the CO2 exchange under natural conditions and the rate of recovery after harvest. In 2007, the south facing slope of URSA was harvested and the north facing slope in 2008. This study examines the inter-annual variability and recovery (after harvest) of net ecosystem productivity (NEP) and water use efficiency (WUE) as controlled by environmental variables such as air temperature, precipitation, soil moisture, growing season length and LAI.

  12. Mapping Heterogeneity in the Boreal Forest of North America

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lyons, E. A.; Sheng, Y.

    2015-12-01

    It is a common misconception that the boreal forest is a uniform carpet of trees stretching around the top of the globe. In fact, the boreal forest is an extremely heterogeneous and dynamic landscape. This has become even clearer through the use of remote sensing, which finally gives us a high resolution view of the entire boreal forest on the continental scale. The complexity of the boreal forest biome, however, is still often over simplified and poorly parameterized in global climate models. Advances in remote sensing and data analysis technology now give us the ability to map the heterogeneity and spatial complexity of the entire North American boreal forest. This study presents such a map and some analysis and observations of patterns in the data. We found that the boreal forest was dominated by many small land cover patches with high diversity of forest cover types. This map has and will continue to provide its own insight into the spatial structure of the boreal forest but will also provide important spatial heterogeneity metrics to improve land-atmosphere interactions in climate models.

  13. Roots and associated fungi drive long-term carbon sequestration in boreal forest.

    PubMed

    Clemmensen, K E; Bahr, A; Ovaskainen, O; Dahlberg, A; Ekblad, A; Wallander, H; Stenlid, J; Finlay, R D; Wardle, D A; Lindahl, B D

    2013-03-29

    Boreal forest soils function as a terrestrial net sink in the global carbon cycle. The prevailing dogma has focused on aboveground plant litter as a principal source of soil organic matter. Using (14)C bomb-carbon modeling, we show that 50 to 70% of stored carbon in a chronosequence of boreal forested islands derives from roots and root-associated microorganisms. Fungal biomarkers indicate impaired degradation and preservation of fungal residues in late successional forests. Furthermore, 454 pyrosequencing of molecular barcodes, in conjunction with stable isotope analyses, highlights root-associated fungi as important regulators of ecosystem carbon dynamics. Our results suggest an alternative mechanism for the accumulation of organic matter in boreal forests during succession in the long-term absence of disturbance.

  14. A Passive Microwave L-Band Boreal Forest Freeze/Thaw and Vegetation Phenology Study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roy, A.; Sonnentag, O.; Pappas, C.; Mavrovic, A.; Royer, A.; Berg, A. A.; Rowlandson, T. L.; Lemay, J.; Helgason, W.; Barr, A.; Black, T. A.; Derksen, C.; Toose, P.

    2016-12-01

    The boreal forest is the second largest land biome in the world and thus plays a major role in the global and regional climate systems. The extent, timing and duration of seasonal freeze/thaw (F/T) state influences vegetation developmental stages (phenology) and, consequently, constitute an important control on how boreal forest ecosystems exchange carbon, water and energy with the atmosphere. The effective retrieval of seasonal F/T state from L-Band radiometry was demonstrated using satellite mission. However, disentangling the seasonally differing contributions from forest overstory and understory vegetation, and the soil surface to the satellite signal remains challenging. Here we present initial results from a radiometer field campaign to improve our understanding of the L-Band derived boreal forest F/T signal and vegetation phenology. Two L-Band surface-based radiometers (SBR) are installed on a micrometeorological tower at the Southern Old Black Spruce site in central Saskatchewan over the 2016-2017 F/T season. One radiometer unit is installed on the flux tower so it views forest including all overstory and understory vegetation and the moss-covered ground surface. A second radiometer unit is installed within the boreal forest overstory, viewing the understory and the ground surface. The objectives of our study are (i) to disentangle the L-Band F/T signal contribution of boreal forest overstory from the understory and ground surface, (ii) to link the L-Band F/T signal to related boreal forest structural and functional characteristics, and (iii) to investigate the use of the L-Band signal to characterize boreal forest carbon, water and energy fluxes. The SBR observations above and within the forest canopy are used to retrieve the transmissivity (γ) and the scattering albedo (ω), two parameters that describe the emission of the forest canopy though the F/T season. These two forest parameters are compared with boreal forest structural and functional

  15. Modeling the impacts of organic layer depth on forest stand recovery from disturbance in the North American boreal forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trugman, A. T.; Medvigy, D.; Fenton, N.; Bergeron, Y.

    2014-12-01

    The boreal forest contains over 30 percent of Earth's terrestrial carbon, stored mainly as organic matter in soils. Warming temperatures have decreased the fire return interval at many locations, potentially opening more boreal forest space to early-successional deciduous species. However, previous observational studies have shown that the residual forest organic layer depth after a fire can be directly related to fire severity and that this organic layer depth plays a critical role in determining post-fire secondary succession in the North American boreal forest. In this study, we use a numerical model constrained by field data to evaluate: (1) the extent to which the organic layer inhibits deciduous seedling establishment; (2) whether differences in seedling establishment after mild and severe burns affect mature forest structure and composition on decadal to century time scales. Our modeling experiments were carried out with the Ecosystem Demography model version 2 (ED2) terrestrial biosphere model. ED2 is designed to explicitly track the growth and mortality of individual trees, which compete for light, water, and nutrients using an open nitrogen cycle. Our simulations feature parameterizations for aspen and black spruce species-types as well as a new dynamic soil organic layer module with species-specific litter decay rates. The updated boreal forest model is validated using several datasets across the North American boreal forest that range from daily carbon and energy fluxes to multi-century basal area chronosequences including: (1) sub-daily to monthly eddy covariance measurements taken in Delta Junction, Alaska and Manitoba, Canada; (2) decade-long forest inventory data from the Cooperative Alaska Forest Inventory taken throughout the Alaskan boreal forest; and (3) multi-century basal area chronosequences measured in Manitoba and Quebec. We then use the model to identify the controls that the soil organic layer exerts on secondary succession between aspen

  16. Nitrogen mineralization in a mature boreal forest, Isle Royale, Michigan

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stottlemyer, R.; Toczydlowski, D.

    1999-01-01

    The 115-ha boreal Wallace Lake watershed, located on Isle Royale in the Lake Superior Basin, receives moderate anthropogenic atmospheric N inputs (3 kg ha-1 yr-1). Ecosystem response to atmospheric N inputs is, in part, determined by internal production and consumption of this limiting nutrient. The objectives of this 2-yr study on plots dominated by birch, spruce, or alder were to quantify forest floor and surface soil net and gross N mineralization rates, and examine potential effects of changes in temperature and moisture on these processes. Gross N mineralization rates were 23 times net mineralization rates, and increased with forest floor/soil temperature and moisture. Substrate quality was a likely factor in higher gross mineralization rates beneath birch and spruce. Ammonium immobilization increased with forest floor/soil temperature and moisture. Higher net N mineralization rates beneath alder resulted from lower microbial immobilization rather than greater gross N mineralization. The greatest differences between gross N mineralization and immobilization occurred in early summer. Ammonium immobilization averaged 62% of gross N mineralization. Net and gross nitrification rates differed by vegetation type, were highest in spring and fall, and increased with moisture. Gross nitrification was 19 times net nitrification rates. Nitrate immobilization increased with soil moisture, and equalled or exceeded gross nitrification. Net and gross N mineralization or nitrification rates were not correlated. Seasonal variation in forest floor and surface soil N cycling coupled with high ecosystem retention of precipitation N inputs suggest streamwater N concentrations and output reflect trends in soil processes.

  17. Lagged processes and critical timescales in boreal forest response to climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wofsy, S. C.; Dunn, A. L.; Amiro, B. D.; Barr, A.; Rocha, A. V.; Goulden, M. L.

    2006-12-01

    Long-term eddy covariance datasets have recorded the response of boreal ecosystems to climate on timescales up to decadal (Dunn et al. 2006, Barr et al. 2006). Carbon balances in these forests are very dynamic, responding to climatic anomalies on timescales of months to years. A boreal black spruce forest in central Manitoba, Canada, was a source of carbon to the atmosphere in the mid-1990s (55 g C m^{- 2} y-1, 1995-1997), but switched to a sink in recent years (-25 g C m-2 y-1, 2003-2005). The short-term carbon exchange at this site was strongly controlled by temperature, but on long timescales the water balance was more important (Dunn et al. 2006). In a boreal aspen forest in central Saskatchewan, Canada, temperature was the main driver of phenology and canopy duration, but drought status, and especially the persistence of drought over multiple years, was a critical control on ecosystem respiration and resultant carbon balance (Barr et al. 2006). Lagged processes are especially important in the boreal forest: Dunn et al. (2006) found that carbon balances, and especially ecosystem respiration, were strongly controlled by the integrated water balance over preceding years, suggesting that the effects of climatic anomalies are expressed slowly in these forests. Rocha et al. (2006) found similar evidence in tree-ring cores from the NOBS site, which showed a strong correlation with lagged water balances, suggesting that wood growth in these forests is a process integrating over prior years. In a tree-ring analysis across aspen stands in western Canada, Hogg et al. (2005) found that current and lagged (up to four years) moisture status were critical factors regulating ecosystem carbon balance. These results from long-term boreal datasets suggest that the vulnerability of these forests to climate change will be strongly dependent on the future balance between precipitation and temperature. Persistent perturbations to the local climate will likely shift overall biome

  18. Bryophyte Evapotranspiration in a Boreal Forest Chronosequence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bond-Lamberty, B.; Ewers, B.; Angstmann, J.; Gower, S.

    2008-12-01

    Forest water fluxes, in particular evapotranspiration (ET), are less well constrained than are carbon fluxes, and the effect of changing stand age on forest ET is not well understood. We combined field and lab measurements to estimate the bryophyte contribution to ET in a black spruce-dominated boreal chronosequence in Manitoba, Canada. Site ages were 17, 42, 76 and 156 years, and each site contained separate well- and poorly-drained stands (bogs). Field plots (N=4) were surveyed for moss diversity and microtopography; meteorological variables were recorded continuously. Field measurements were made 3-4 times during the growing season using a custom chamber attached to a LI-COR 6400. In addition, large tubs of moss were incubated in a controlled-environment chamber and water loss rates measured via weighing; these tubs were also measured using the same protocol as performed in the field. In the lab, fully-saturated feathermoss and Sphagnum lost water at rates as high as 1.5 and 4.5 mm day-1, respectively, at 25 °C. Over the entire year, modeled bryophyte ET ranged from 0.2-0.3 and 0.2-0.5 mm day-1 in the well- and poorly-drained stands, respectively. During the growing season, these rates were 0.7-0.8 and 0.6- 1.4 mm day-1. Ignoring bog microtopography would have resulted in underestimation of fluxes by ~10%. There was no clear trend of moss ET flux with stand age, except at the very youngest stands, where bryophyte spatial coverage was low. Our results emphasize the important contribution that bryophytes make to the ET flux of boreal forests.

  19. Disturbance Regimes and Landscape Heterogeneity in the Boreal Forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lyons, Evan Albert

    The boreal forest circles the high northern latitudes but it is far from a continuous carpet of evergreen trees. Rather, the boreal forest is a patchwork of land cover types in constant flux as they recover from wildfire and then are burned again. This fast turnover of land cover makes the boreal forest particularly susceptible to rapid change in response to climate. Furthermore, the boreal forest is an important component of the climate system that pumps heat into the atmosphere and significantly raises northern hemisphere temperatures year-round. As both a major component of the climate system and a sensitive indicator of climate change, the boreal forest is in a feedback loop. The direction of that feedback loop, positive or negative, depends largely on the strength of the land-atmosphere exchange of heat and momentum driven by forest cover and its spatial structure. That spatial structure has yet to be comprehensively measured. This dissertation used newly available, high resolution, satellite based forest cover data to quantify the heterogeneity of the boreal forest in North America. First, at the local scale, the pattern of forest cover patches within fires were found to be larger, more regularly shaped, and clustered than in unburned forest. The heterogeneity metrics also returned to pre-fire levels relatively quickly. At the continental scale, the landscape heterogeneity maps were analyzed by region, with respect to the northern extent of trees, and disturbance regimes. The boreal forest regions had smaller, more complicated forest patches, and no single dominant forest cover class which was significantly different than the temperate forests that border the region to the south. When compared to two preexisting maps of the boreal treeline, the patch cohesion metric indicated that the tundra ecoregion extended further south into the forested Central and Eastern Canada. Based on this finding, a new patch cohesion-based treeline was drawn which divides the

  20. Main dynamics and drivers of boreal forests fire regimes during the Holocene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Molinari, Chiara; Lehsten, Veiko; Blarquez, Olivier; Clear, Jennifer; Carcaillet, Christopher; Bradshaw, Richard HW

    2015-04-01

    Forest fire is one of the most critical ecosystem processes in the boreal megabiome, and it is likely that its frequency, size and severity have had a primary role in vegetation dynamics since the Last Ice Age (Kasischke & Stocks 2000). Fire not only organizes the physical and biological attributes of boreal forests, but also affects biogeochemical cycling, particularly the carbon balance (Balshi et al. 2007). Due to their location at climatically sensitive northern latitudes, boreal forests are likely to be significantly affected by global warming with a consequent increase in biomass burning (Soja et al. 2007), a variation in vegetation structure and composition (Johnstone et al. 2004) and a rise in atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration (Bond-Lamberty et al. 2007). Even if the ecological role of wildfire in boreal forest is widely recognized, a clearer understanding of the environmental factors controlling fire dynamics and how variations in fire regimes impact forest ecosystems is essential in order to place modern fire processes in a meaningful context for projecting ecosystem behaviour in a changing environment (Kelly et al. 2013). Because fire return intervals and successional cycles in boreal forests occur over decadal to centennial timescales (Hu et al. 2006), palaeoecological research seems to be one of the most promising tool for elucidating ecosystem changes over a broad range of environmental conditions and temporal scales. Within this context, our first aim is to reconstruct spatial and temporal patterns of boreal forests fire dynamics during the Holocene based on sedimentary charcoal records. As a second step, trends in biomass burning will be statistically analysed in order to disentangle between regional and local drivers. The use of European and north-American sites will give us the unique possibility to perform a large scale analysis on one of the broadest biome in the world and to underline the different patterns of fire in these two

  1. Effects of Sloped Terrain and Forest Stand Maturity on Evapotranspiration in a Boreal Forested Catchment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Isabelle, P. E.; Nadeau, D.; Parent, A. C.; Rousseau, A. N.; Jutras, S.; Anctil, F.

    2015-12-01

    The boreal forests are the predominant landscape of Canada, occupying 49% of its boreal zone or 27% of the country. Despite the tremendous amount of literature on such ecosystems, some gaps persist in our understanding of boreal forest evapotranspiration (ET), given that direct measurements are costly to obtain and therefore scarce in these remote territories. This is especially the case on sloped terrain, since the eddy covariance method is not traditionally used in such situations. These gaps lead to the implementation of the EVAP experimental project, which intends to produce a major leap in our understanding of the water and energy budgets of a sloped boreal forest. Starting in summer 2015, we heavily instrumented a watershed in the Montmorency Forest (47°17' N; 71°10' W), Quebec, Canada. Located in the Laurentian Mountains, the forest has a mean elevation of 750 m with peaks at 1000 m. The setup includes a 20-m flux tower with two separate sets of eddy correlation and net radiation measurements facing opposite directions, located over an almost mature boreal forest (logged ~20 years ago, 8-10 m trees). Eddy fluxes are also measured under the canopy with a similar setup, while a sub-watershed is instrumented with a 10-m flux tower using homologous instruments, this time on a much younger forest stand (logged ~10 years ago, 4-5 m trees). Both sites are characterized by a significant slope (~20%), facing northeast for the 20-m tower and west for the 10-m tower. With several other instruments, we are measuring every major components of both water and energy budgets, including the outgoing discharge of the watershed and subwatershed. The different slope orientations and local topography of both sites allow us to quantify the relationships between solar exposition, topographic shading and ET rates; these relationships being transposable to other mountainous forested catchments. We also investigate the presence of slope flows and assess their impact on local ET

  2. Nitrogen balance along a northern boreal forest fire chronosequence

    PubMed Central

    Pumpanen, Jukka; Berninger, Frank; Ritala, Kaisa; Duan, Baoli; Heinonsalo, Jussi; Sun, Hui; Köster, Egle; Köster, Kajar

    2017-01-01

    Fire is a major natural disturbance factor in boreal forests, and the frequency of forest fires is predicted to increase due to climate change. Nitrogen (N) is a key determinant of carbon sequestration in boreal forests because the shortage of N limits tree growth. We studied changes in N pools and fluxes, and the overall N balance across a 155-year non stand-replacing fire chronosequence in sub-arctic Pinus sylvestris forests in Finland. Two years after the fire, total ecosystem N pool was 622 kg ha-1 of which 16% was in the vegetation, 8% in the dead biomass and 76% in the soil. 155 years after the fire, total N pool was 960 kg ha-1, with 27% in the vegetation, 3% in the dead biomass and 69% in the soil. This implies an annual accumulation rate of 2.28 kg ha-1 which was distributed equally between soil and biomass. The observed changes in N pools were consistent with the computed N balance +2.11 kg ha-1 yr-1 over the 155-year post-fire period. Nitrogen deposition was an important component of the N balance. The biological N fixation increased with succession and constituted 9% of the total N input during the 155 post-fire years. N2O fluxes were negligible (≤ 0.01 kg ha-1 yr-1) and did not differ among post-fire age classes. The number and intensity of microbial genes involved in N cycling were lower at the site 60 years after fire compared to the youngest and the oldest sites indicating potential differences in soil N cycling processes. The results suggest that in sub-arctic pine forests, the non-stand-replacing, intermediate-severity fires decrease considerably N pools in biomass but changes in soil and total ecosystem N pools are slight. Current fire-return interval does not seem to pose a great threat to ecosystem productivity and N status in these sub-arctic forests. PMID:28358884

  3. Nitrogen balance along a northern boreal forest fire chronosequence.

    PubMed

    Palviainen, Marjo; Pumpanen, Jukka; Berninger, Frank; Ritala, Kaisa; Duan, Baoli; Heinonsalo, Jussi; Sun, Hui; Köster, Egle; Köster, Kajar

    2017-01-01

    Fire is a major natural disturbance factor in boreal forests, and the frequency of forest fires is predicted to increase due to climate change. Nitrogen (N) is a key determinant of carbon sequestration in boreal forests because the shortage of N limits tree growth. We studied changes in N pools and fluxes, and the overall N balance across a 155-year non stand-replacing fire chronosequence in sub-arctic Pinus sylvestris forests in Finland. Two years after the fire, total ecosystem N pool was 622 kg ha-1 of which 16% was in the vegetation, 8% in the dead biomass and 76% in the soil. 155 years after the fire, total N pool was 960 kg ha-1, with 27% in the vegetation, 3% in the dead biomass and 69% in the soil. This implies an annual accumulation rate of 2.28 kg ha-1 which was distributed equally between soil and biomass. The observed changes in N pools were consistent with the computed N balance +2.11 kg ha-1 yr-1 over the 155-year post-fire period. Nitrogen deposition was an important component of the N balance. The biological N fixation increased with succession and constituted 9% of the total N input during the 155 post-fire years. N2O fluxes were negligible (≤ 0.01 kg ha-1 yr-1) and did not differ among post-fire age classes. The number and intensity of microbial genes involved in N cycling were lower at the site 60 years after fire compared to the youngest and the oldest sites indicating potential differences in soil N cycling processes. The results suggest that in sub-arctic pine forests, the non-stand-replacing, intermediate-severity fires decrease considerably N pools in biomass but changes in soil and total ecosystem N pools are slight. Current fire-return interval does not seem to pose a great threat to ecosystem productivity and N status in these sub-arctic forests.

  4. Fire Severity and Soil Carbon Combustion in Boreal and Tundra Ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Walker, X. J.; Mack, M. C.; Baltzer, J. L.; Cummings, S.; Day, N.; Goetz, S.; Johnstone, J. F.; Rogers, B. M.; Turetsky, M. R.

    2016-12-01

    Climate warming in northern latitudes has led to an intensification of wildfire disturbance. Increased fire frequency, extent, and severity is expected to strongly impact the structure and function of northern ecosystems. In this study, we examined 50 sites in a recently burned tundra ecosystem of Alaska, USA and 250 sites in recently burned boreal conifer forest ecosystems of Northwest Territories, Canada. The majority of organic carbon (C) in both boreal and tundra ecosystems resides in the soil organic layer (SOL) and combustion of this layer can lead to large C emissions. Through examining multiple fire scars in different regions, ranging in moisture, elevation, and pre-fire vegetation communities, we can determine the ecosystem, landscape, and regional controls on SOL combustion and the potential shift in C storage. In this research, we use scalable SOL consumption metrics to estimate depth of burn and the associated C emissions. Preliminary results from boreal conifer sites indicate that nearly 50% of the pre-fire soil C pool was combusted and that over 75% of the total C emitted from the extreme fire year of 2014 can be attributed to combustion of the SOL. Increased combustion of SOL associated with an intensifying fire regime could shift boreal and tundra ecosystems across a C cycle threshold: from net accumulation of C from the atmosphere over multiple fire cycles, to a net loss. Understanding changes in SOL combustion and C storage is essential for assessing the consequences of an altered fire regime on permafrost dynamics, vegetation regeneration, and the initiation of successional trajectories in tundra and boreal ecosystems.

  5. Evaporation Dynamics of Moss and Bare Soil in Boreal Forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dempster, S.; Young, J. M.; Barron, C. G.; Bolton, W. R.

    2013-12-01

    Evaporation dynamics of mosses is a critical process in boreal and arctic systems and represents a key uncertainty in hydrology and climate models. At this point, moss evaporation is not well quantified at the plot or landscape scale. Relative to bare soil or litter evaporation, moss evaporation can be challenging to predict because the water flux is not isolated to the moss surface. Evaporation can originate from nearly 10 cm below the surface. Some mosses can wick moisture from even deeper than 10 cm, which subsequently evaporates. The goal of this study was to use field measurements to quantify the moss evaporation dynamics in a coniferous forest relative to bare ground or litter evaporation dynamics in a deciduous forest in Interior Alaska. Measurements were made in two ecosystem types within the boreal forest of Interior Alaska: a deciduous forest devoid of moss and a coniferous forest with a thick moss layer. A small clear chamber was attached to a LiCor 840 infrared gas analyzer in a closed loop system with a low flow rate. Water fluxes were measured for ~ 90 seconds on each plot in dry and wet soil and moss conditions. Additional measurements included: soil temperature, soil moisture, air temperature, barometric pressure, dew point, relative humidity, and wind speed. Thermal infrared images were also captured in congruence with water flux measurements to determine skin temperature. We found that the moss evaporation rate was over 100% greater than the soil evaporation rate (0.057 g/min vs. 0.024 g/min), and evaporation rates in both systems were most strongly driven by relative humidity and surface temperature. Surface temperature was lower at the birch site than the black spruce site because trees shade the surface beneath the birch. High fluxes associated with high water content were sustained for a longer period of time over the mosses compared to the bare soil. The thermal IR data showed that skin temperature lagged the evaporation flux, such that the

  6. Measurement of CO2 exchange between Boreal forest and the atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Black, T Andrew; Gaumont-Guay, David; Jassal, Rachhpal S; Amiro, Brian D; Jarvis, Paul G; Gower, Stith T; Kelliher, Frank M; Dunn, Allison; Wofsy, Steven C

    2005-01-01

    The Boreal forest is the world's second largest forested biome occupying the circumpolar region between 50 degrees N and 70 degrees N. This heterogeneous biome stores about 25% of all terrestrial carbon. We have reviewed EC measurements of CO2 exchange between the atmosphere and Boreal forests, and assessed progress in understanding the controlling processes. We have assessed net ecosystem productivity, the net balance between net primary productivity and heterotrophic respiration, measured using the EC method, for 38 Boreal forest sites. Gross ecosystem productivity has been estimated by adding day-time EC-measured CO2 fluxes to respiration estimated from night-time relationships between respiration and temperature. Maximum midday values of gross ecosystem productivity vary from 33 pmol m(-2) s(-1) for aspen to 6 micromol m(-2) s(-1) for larch stands. Long-term EC flux measurements, ongoing at nine Boreal sites, have shown the strong impact of spring weather and growing season water balance on annual net ecosystem productivity. Estimation of net biome production, incorporating the effects of disturbance resulting from forest fires and logging, has progressed significantly in recent years. After disturbance, summer measurements in Boreal chronosequences suggest that it takes about 10 years before growing season carbon uptake offsets the decomposition emissions. Small-scale exchange rate measurements using chambers and manipulative experiments such as stem girdling and soil heating help to understand the processes and mechanisms playing major roles in the carbon balance of terrestrial ecosystems. Aircraft EC flux measurements, convective boundary layer carbon budgets, and (13)C/12C changes in the atmosphere play an important role in validating estimates of regional carbon exchange based on scaled up EC measurements. Atmospheric inverse models are an important approach to studying regional and global carbon balance but need further improvement to yield reliable

  7. Responses of aboveground and belowground forest carbon stocks to disturbances in boreal forests of Northeastern China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Chao; He, Hong S.; Hawbaker, Todd J.; Liang, Yu; Gong, Peng; Wu, Wuzhiwei; Zhu, Zhiliang

    2016-04-01

    Boreal forests represents about 1/3 of forest area and 1/3 of forest carbon on earth. Carbon dynamics of boreal forests are sensitive to climate change, natural (e.g., fire) and anthropogenic (e.g., harvest) disturbances. Field-based studies suggest that disturbances alter species composition, stand structure, and litter decomposition, and have significant effects on boreal forest carbon dynamics. Most of these studies, however, covered a relatively short period of time (e.g., few decades), which is limited in revealing such long-term effects of disturbances. Models are therefore developed as important tools in exploring the long-term (e.g., hundreds of years) effects of disturbances on forest carbon dynamics. In this study, we applied a framework of coupling forest ecosystem and landscape model to evaluating the effect of fire, harvest and their interactions on carbon stocks in a boreal forest landscape of Northeastern China. We compared the simulation results under fire, harvest and fire-harvest interaction scenarios with the simulated value of succession scenario at 26 landtypes over 150 years at a 10-year time step. Our results suggest that aboveground and belowground carbon are significantly reduced by fire and harvest over 150years. Fire reduced aboveground carbon by 2.3±0.6 ton/ha, harvest by 6.0±1.4 ton/ha, and fire and harvest interaction by 8.0±1.9 tons/ha. Fire reduced belowground carbon by 4.6±3.4 ton/ha, harvest by 5.0±3.5 ton/ha, and fire-harvest interaction by 5.7±3.7 tons/ha. The divergent response of carbon stocks among landtypes and between disturbance scenarios was due to the spatial interactions between fire, harvest, and species composition. Our results indicated that boreal forests carbon stocks prediction needs to consider the effects of fire and harvest for improving the estimation accuracy.

  8. Arctic and boreal ecosystems of western North America as components of the climate system

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Chapin, F. S.; McGuire, A.D.; Randerson, J.; Pielke, R.; Baldocchi, D.; Hobbie, S.E.; Roulet, Nigel; Eugster, W.; Kasischke, E.; Rastetter, E.B.; Zimov, S.A.; Running, S.W.

    2000-01-01

    Synthesis of results from several Arctic and boreal research programmes provides evidence for the strong role of high-latitude ecosystems in the climate system. Average surface air temperature has increased 0.3??C per decade during the twentieth century in the western North American Arctic and boreal forest zones. Precipitation has also increased, but changes in soil moisture are uncertain. Disturbance rates have increased in the boreal forest; for example, there has been a doubling of the area burned in North America in the past 20 years. The disturbance regime in tundra may not have changed. Tundra has a 3-6-fold higher winter albedo than boreal forest, but summer albedo and energy partitioning differ more strongly among ecosystems within either tundra or boreal forest than between these two biomes. This indicates a need to improve our understanding of vegetation dynamics within, as well as between, biomes. If regional surface warming were to continue, changes in albedo and energy absorption would likely act as a positive feedback to regional warming due to earlier melting of snow and, over the long term, the northward movement of treeline. Surface drying and a change in dominance from mosses to vascular plants would also enhance sensible heat flux and regional warming in tundra. In the boreal forest of western North America, deciduous forests have twice the albedo of conifer forests in both winter and summer, 50-80% higher evapotranspiration, and therefore only 30-50% of the sensible heat flux of conifers in summer. Therefore, a warming-induced increase in fire frequency that increased the proportion of deciduous forests in the landscape, would act as a negative feedback to regional warming. Changes in thermokarst and the aerial extent of wetlands, lakes, and ponds would alter high-latitude methane flux. There is currently a wide discrepancy among estimates of the size and direction of CO2 flux between high-latitude ecosystems and the atmosphere. These

  9. The changing effects of Alaska’s boreal forests on the climate system

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Euskirchen, E.S.; McGuire, Anthony; Chapin, F.S.; Rupp, T.S.

    2010-01-01

    In the boreal forests of Alaska, recent changes in climate have influenced the exchange of trace gases, water, and energy between these forests and the atmosphere. These changes in the structure and function of boreal forests can then feed back to impact regional and global climates. In this manuscript, we examine the type and magnitude of the climate feedbacks from boreal forests in Alaska. Research generally suggests that the net effect of a warming climate is a positive regional feedback to warming. Currently, the primary positive climate feedbacks are likely related to decreases in surface albedo due to decreases in snow cover. Fewer negative feedbacks have been identified, and they may not be large enough to counterbalance the large positive feedbacks. These positive feedbacks are most pronounced at the regional scale and reduce the resilience of the boreal vegetation – climate system by amplifying the rate of regional warming. Given the recent warming in this region, the large variety of associated mechanisms that can alter terrestrial ecosystems and influence the climate system, and a reduction in the boreal forest resilience, there is a strong need to continue to quantify and evaluate the feedback pathways.

  10. Mechanisms influencing changes in lake area in Alaskan boreal forest

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Roach, Jennifer K.; Griffith, Brad; Verbyla, David; Jones, Jeremy B.

    2011-01-01

    During the past ∼50 years, the number and area of lakes have declined in several regions in boreal forests. However, there has been substantial finer-scale heterogeneity; some lakes decreased in area, some showed no trend, and others increased. The objective of this study was to identify the primary mechanisms underlying heterogeneous trends in closed-basin lake area. Eight lake characteristics (δ18O, electrical conductivity, surface : volume index, bank slope, floating mat width, peat depth, thaw depth at shoreline, and thaw depth at the forest boundary) were compared for 15 lake pairs in Alaskan boreal forest where one lake had decreased in area since ∼1950, and the other had not. Mean differences in characteristics between paired lakes were used to identify the most likely of nine mechanistic scenarios that combined three potential mechanisms for decreasing lake area (talik drainage, surface water evaporation, and terrestrialization) with three potential mechanisms for nondecreasing lake area (subpermafrost groundwater recharge through an open talik, stable permafrost, and thermokarst). A priori expectations of the direction of mean differences between decreasing and nondecreasing paired lakes were generated for each scenario. Decreasing lakes had significantly greater electrical conductivity, greater surface : volume indices, shallower bank slopes, wider floating mats, greater peat depths, and shallower thaw depths at the forest boundary. These results indicated that the most likely scenario was terrestrialization as the mechanism for lake area reduction combined with thermokarst as the mechanism for nondecreasing lake area. Terrestrialization and thermokarst may have been enhanced by recent warming which has both accelerated permafrost thawing and lengthened the growing season, thereby increasing plant growth, floating mat encroachment, transpiration rates, and the accumulation of organic matter in lake basins. The transition to peatlands associated

  11. UAVSAR Radar Imagery of Boreal Forests Around Quebec City, Canada

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2009-09-01

    JPL Uninhabited Aerial Vehicle Synthetic Aperture Radar collected this composite radar image around Québec City, Canada, during an 11-day campaign to study the structure of temperate and boreal forests.

  12. NSCAT Observation of Spring Thaw in Alaskan Boreal Forest

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    McDonald, K. C.; Zimmermann, R.; Way, J. B.

    1997-01-01

    The focus of this effort is the assessment of spaceborne scatteromter observations for monitoring landscape freeze/thaw transitions in the boreal forest thereby providing a means for estimating growing season duration.

  13. Long-term effects of single potassium fertilization on 137Cs levels in plants and fungi in a boreal forest ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Rosén, K; Vinichuk, M; Nikolova, I; Johanson, K

    2011-02-01

    We examined the long-term effects of a single application of potassium (K) fertilizer (100 kg K ha(-1)) in 1992 on (137)Cs uptake in a forest ecosystem in central Sweden. (137)Cs activity concentrations were determined in three low-growing perennial shrubs, heather (Calluna vulgaris), lingonberry (Vaccinium vitis-idaea) and bilberry (Vaccinium myrtillus), and in four wild fungal species (Cortinarius semisanguineus, Lactarius rufus, Rozites caperata and Suillus variegatus). Uptake of (137)Cs by plants and fungi growing on K-fertilized plots 17 years after application of the K fertilizer was significantly lower than in corresponding species growing in a non-fertilized control area. The (137)Cs activity concentration was 21-58% lower in fungal sporocarps and 40-61% lower in plants in the K-fertilized area compared with the control. Over the study period, this decrease in (137)Cs activity concentration was more consistent in plants than in fungi, although the effect was statistically significant and strongly pronounced in all species. The effect of K fertilization in reducing (137)Cs activity concentration in fungi and plants decreased over time but was still significant in 2009, 17 years after fertilization. This suggests that application of K fertilizer to forests is an appropriate and effective long-term measure to decrease radiocaesium accumulation in plants and fungi.

  14. Predicting Forest Floor Consumption From Wildland Fire in Boreal forests of Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ottmar, R. D.

    2010-12-01

    Forest fires are one of the dominant ecological force shaping the distribution and structure of boreal ecosystems. Many areas of the boreal forests of Alaska often contain deep layers of moss, duff, and peat, resulting in large pools of sequestered carbon and biomass that potentially can burn and smolder for long periods of time during these wildfires creating hazardous smoke episodes for local residents and communities and causing detrimental landscape impacts. Research to quantify forest floor consumption is critical for effective modeling fire effects such as smoke emissions, regional haze, global warming, permafrost melting, erosion, and plant succession. Forest floor reduction was measured at 18 black and white spruce and birch-aspen prescribed fires between 1990-2004 and 24 black and white spruce sites on 6 wildfires during 2003 and 2004. Three of the sites were part of the large international Frostfire project near Fairbanks, Alaska, and were used as an independent test data set. Several forest floor reduction equations were developed, of which one is presented in this presentation. The double parameter equation uses upper forest floor fuel moisture content and preburn forest floor depth as independent variables. The fuel moisture content of the upper forest floor can be obtained from forest floor samples that are collected, oven dried, and weighed to determine gravimetric fuel moisture content. The preburn forest floor depths require onsite measurements to be collected. The forest floor consumption model has been incorporated into Consume, a software package used by land managers and scientists to predict fuel consumption during wildland fires.

  15. Fire in Siberian boreal forests -- implications for global climate and air quality

    Treesearch

    Susan G. Conard; Eduard P. Davidenko

    1998-01-01

    Boreal forests and woodlands comprise about 29 percent of the world's forest cover. About 70 percent of this forest is in Eurasia, mostly in the Russian Federation. Boreal forests contain about 45 percent of the world's growing stock and are an increasingly important part of global timber production. Fire impacts large areas of boreal forest annually in...

  16. Competitive interactions among raptors in boreal forests.

    PubMed

    Hakkarainen, Harri; Mykrä, Sakari; Kurki, Sami; Tornberg, Risto; Jungell, Sven

    2004-11-01

    We examined inter-specific interactions among goshawks ( Accipiter gentilis), common buzzards (Buteo buteo) and honey buzzards (Pernis apivorus) in western Finland in 1983-1996. Because goshawks are among the largest birds of prey species in boreal forests they may take over the nest of smaller and less-competitive forest-dwelling raptors when searching for suitable places for breeding. Accordingly, more than half of newly established goshawk territories were found on the territories previously occupied by the common buzzard and the honey buzzard. Otherwise, territory sharing between these species was rare. Fledgling production of honey buzzards was not associated with the presence of goshawks, probably owing to the almost 2 months later onset of breeding. This probably decreases competitive interactions between these two species. An intensive interference competition, instead, seemed to be evident between common buzzards and goshawks, because the fledgling production of common buzzards was decreased by 20% as a result of failures during incubation and nestling period in the vicinity (<1 km) of occupied goshawk nests. Similarly, territory occupancy of common buzzards till the next breeding season was significantly reduced in the presence of goshawks. Relatively high proportions of occupied buzzard territories (17%) in the study area were shared by breeding goshawks on the same territory. This suggests that although their diets are dissimilar they inhabit similar habitats and might compete for the available prime nesting habitats within forest landscapes. In addition, goshawks benefit from taking over the complete nests of other raptors, imposing upon the original owners of the nest, because building a large stick nest is probably energetically costly. As a large raptor, the goshawk apparently has a competitive advantage over smaller ones, and may have an ever-increasing impact on smaller birds of prey, if there is a lack of sheltered forests inducing competition

  17. Logging and Fire Effects in Siberian Boreal Forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kukavskaya, E.; Buryak, L.; Ivanova, G.; Kalenskaya, O.; Bogorodskaya, A.; Zhila, S.; McRae, D.; Conard, S. G.

    2013-12-01

    The Russian boreal zone supports a huge terrestrial carbon pool. Moreover, it is a tremendous reservoir of wood products concentrated mainly in Siberia. The main natural disturbance in these forests is wildfire, which modifies the carbon budget and has potentially important climate feedbacks. In addition, both legal and illegal logging increase landscape complexity and fire hazard. We investigated a number of sites in different regions of Siberia to evaluate the impacts of fire and logging on fuel loads, carbon emissions, tree regeneration, soil respiration, and microbocenosis. We found large variations of fire and logging effects among regions depending on growing conditions and type of logging activity. Partial logging had no negative impact on forest conditions and carbon cycle. Illegal logging resulted in increase of fire hazard, and higher carbon emissions than legal logging. The highest fuel loads and carbon emissions were found on repeatedly burned unlogged sites where first fire resulted in total tree mortality. Repeated fires together with logging activities in drier conditions and on large burned sites resulted in insufficient regeneration, or even total lack of tree seedlings. Soil respiration was less on both burned and logged areas than in undisturbed forest. The highest structural and functional disturbances of the soil microbocenosis were observed on logged burned sites. Understanding current interactions between fire and logging is important for modeling ecosystem processes and for managers to develop strategies of sustainable forest management. Changing patterns in the harvest of wood products increase landscape complexity and can be expected to increase emissions and ecosystem damage from wildfires, inhibit recovery of natural ecosystems, and exacerbate impacts of wildland fire on changing climate and air quality. The research was supported by NASA LCLUC Program, RFBR grant # 12-04-31258, and Russian Academy of Sciences.

  18. Session overview: forest ecosystems

    Treesearch

    John J. Battles; Robert C. Heald

    2004-01-01

    The core assumption of this symposium is that science can provide insight to management. Nowhere is this link more formally established than in regard to the science and management of forest ecosystems. The basic questions addressed are integral to our understanding of nature; the applications of this understanding are crucial to effective stewardship of natural...

  19. Foreword: The dynamics of change in Alaska’s boreal forests: Resilience and vulnerability in response to climate warming

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McGuire, Anthony; Chapin, F. Stuart; Ruess, Roger W.

    2016-01-01

    Long-term research by the Bonanza Creek (BNZ) Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) program has documented natural patterns of interannual and successional variability of the boreal forest in interior Alaska against which we can detect changes in system behavior. Between 2004 and 2010 the BNZ LTER program focused on understanding the dynamics of change through studying the resilience and vulnerability of Alaska's boreal forest in response to climate warming. The overarching question in this endeavor has been “How are boreal ecosystems responding, both gradually and abruptly, to climate warming, and what new landscape patterns are emerging?”

  20. Reduced postfire tree regeneration along a boreal forest-forest-tundra transect in northern Quebec

    SciTech Connect

    Sirois, L.; Payette, S. )

    1991-04-01

    The large 1950s fires that burned > 5,500 km{sup 2} of land across a south-to-north climatic gradient in northern Quebec provide an opportunity to evaluate the role of fire in forest-tundra development on a demographic basis. The tree population density before and {approx} 30 yr after fire was estimated by censusing trees in plots of 400 m{sup 2} located in upland and lowland within four representative ecoregions of northern Quebec. The analysis of tree recruitment before and after fire, in 410 randomly selected sites along a transect crossing the upper boreal forest and forest-tundra zones, indicated that wildfires induced substantial depletion of tree populations. Taken as a whole, fires have significantly reduced the density of black spruce populations in forest-tundra uplands, but not in the lowlands. Sustained reduction of tree population density after several destructive fires appears as one of the main deforestation processed in the subarctic zone. This leads to the patchy distribution of forest stands and scattered tree populations typical of the forest-tundra biome. Comparisons with paleoecological data suggest that the impact of the 1950s fires contributed to the expansion of the forest tundra into the upper boreal forest. The ecological impact of these fires was probably similar to those fires responsible for development of the forest tundra during the Holocene. It is suggested that the fire-climate interaction should be considered in order to predict the ecological impact of warming climate on high-latitude forest ecosystems.

  1. Boreal forests, aerosols and the impacts on clouds and climate.

    PubMed

    Spracklen, Dominick V; Bonn, Boris; Carslaw, Kenneth S

    2008-12-28

    Previous studies have concluded that boreal forests warm the climate because the cooling from storage of carbon in vegetation and soils is cancelled out by the warming due to the absorption of the Sun's heat by the dark forest canopy. However, these studies ignored the impacts of forests on atmospheric aerosol. We use a global atmospheric model to show that, through emission of organic vapours and the resulting condensational growth of newly formed particles, boreal forests double regional cloud condensation nuclei concentrations (from approx. 100 to approx. 200 cm(-3)). Using a simple radiative model, we estimate that the resulting change in cloud albedo causes a radiative forcing of between -1.8 and -6.7 W m(-2) of forest. This forcing may be sufficiently large to result in boreal forests having an overall cooling impact on climate. We propose that the combination of climate forcings related to boreal forests may result in an important global homeostasis. In cold climatic conditions, the snow-vegetation albedo effect dominates and boreal forests warm the climate, whereas in warmer climates they may emit sufficiently large amounts of organic vapour modifying cloud albedo and acting to cool climate.

  2. Pinus sylvestris as a missing source of nitrous oxide and methane in boreal forest

    PubMed Central

    Machacova, Katerina; Bäck, Jaana; Vanhatalo, Anni; Halmeenmäki, Elisa; Kolari, Pasi; Mammarella, Ivan; Pumpanen, Jukka; Acosta, Manuel; Urban, Otmar; Pihlatie, Mari

    2016-01-01

    Boreal forests comprise 73% of the world’s coniferous forests. Based on forest floor measurements, they have been considered a significant natural sink of methane (CH4) and a natural source of nitrous oxide (N2O), both of which are important greenhouse gases. However, the role of trees, especially conifers, in ecosystem N2O and CH4 exchange is only poorly understood. We show for the first time that mature Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) trees consistently emit N2O and CH4 from both stems and shoots. The shoot fluxes of N2O and CH4 exceeded the stem flux rates by 16 and 41 times, respectively. Moreover, higher stem N2O and CH4 fluxes were observed from wet than from dry areas of the forest. The N2O release from boreal pine forests may thus be underestimated and the uptake of CH4 may be overestimated when ecosystem flux calculations are based solely on forest floor measurements. The contribution of pine trees to the N2O and CH4 exchange of the boreal pine forest seems to increase considerably under high soil water content, thus highlighting the urgent need to include tree-emissions in greenhouse gas emission inventories. PMID:26997421

  3. Pinus sylvestris as a missing source of nitrous oxide and methane in boreal forest.

    PubMed

    Machacova, Katerina; Bäck, Jaana; Vanhatalo, Anni; Halmeenmäki, Elisa; Kolari, Pasi; Mammarella, Ivan; Pumpanen, Jukka; Acosta, Manuel; Urban, Otmar; Pihlatie, Mari

    2016-03-21

    Boreal forests comprise 73% of the world's coniferous forests. Based on forest floor measurements, they have been considered a significant natural sink of methane (CH4) and a natural source of nitrous oxide (N2O), both of which are important greenhouse gases. However, the role of trees, especially conifers, in ecosystem N2O and CH4 exchange is only poorly understood. We show for the first time that mature Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) trees consistently emit N2O and CH4 from both stems and shoots. The shoot fluxes of N2O and CH4 exceeded the stem flux rates by 16 and 41 times, respectively. Moreover, higher stem N2O and CH4 fluxes were observed from wet than from dry areas of the forest. The N2O release from boreal pine forests may thus be underestimated and the uptake of CH4 may be overestimated when ecosystem flux calculations are based solely on forest floor measurements. The contribution of pine trees to the N2O and CH4 exchange of the boreal pine forest seems to increase considerably under high soil water content, thus highlighting the urgent need to include tree-emissions in greenhouse gas emission inventories.

  4. Thermokarst rates intensify due to climate change and forest fragmentation in an Alaskan boreal forest lowland

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lara, M.; Genet, Helene; McGuire, Anthony; Euskirchen, Eugénie S.; Zhang, Yujin; Brown, Dana R. N.; Jorgenson, M.T.; Romanovsky, V.; Breen, Amy L.; Bolton, W.R.

    2016-01-01

    Lowland boreal forest ecosystems in Alaska are dominated by wetlands comprised of a complex mosaic of fens, collapse-scar bogs, low shrub/scrub, and forests growing on elevated ice-rich permafrost soils. Thermokarst has affected the lowlands of the Tanana Flats in central Alaska for centuries, as thawing permafrost collapses forests that transition to wetlands. Located within the discontinuous permafrost zone, this region has significantly warmed over the past half-century, and much of these carbon-rich permafrost soils are now within ~0.5 °C of thawing. Increased permafrost thaw in lowland boreal forests in response to warming may have consequences for the climate system. This study evaluates the trajectories and potential drivers of 60 years of forest change in a landscape subjected to permafrost thaw in unburned dominant forest types (paper birch and black spruce) associated with location on elevated permafrost plateau and across multiple time periods (1949, 1978, 1986, 1998, and 2009) using historical and contemporary aerial and satellite images for change detection. We developed (i) a deterministic statistical model to evaluate the potential climatic controls on forest change using gradient boosting and regression tree analysis, and (ii) a 30 × 30 m land cover map of the Tanana Flats to estimate the potential landscape-level losses of forest area due to thermokarst from 1949 to 2009. Over the 60-year period, we observed a nonlinear loss of birch forests and a relatively continuous gain of spruce forest associated with thermokarst and forest succession, while gradient boosting/regression tree models identify precipitation and forest fragmentation as the primary factors controlling birch and spruce forest change, respectively. Between 1950 and 2009, landscape-level analysis estimates a transition of ~15 km² or ~7% of birch forests to wetlands, where the greatest change followed warm periods. This work highlights that the vulnerability and resilience of

  5. Persistent and pervasive compositional shifts of western boreal forest plots in Canada.

    PubMed

    Searle, Eric B; Chen, Han Y H

    2017-02-01

    Species compositional shifts have important consequences to biodiversity and ecosystem function and services to humanity. In boreal forests, compositional shifts from late-successional conifers to early-successional conifers and deciduous broadleaves have been postulated based on increased fire frequency associated with climate change truncating stand age-dependent succession. However, little is known about how climate change has affected forest composition in the background between successive catastrophic fires in boreal forests. Using 1797 permanent sample plots from western boreal forests of Canada measured from 1958 to 2013, we show that after accounting for stand age-dependent succession, the relative abundances of early-successional deciduous broadleaves and early-successional conifers have increased at the expense of late-successional conifers with climate change. These background compositional shifts are persistent temporally, consistent across all forest stand ages and pervasive spatially across the region. Rising atmospheric CO2 promoted early-successional conifers and deciduous broadleaves, and warming increased early-successional conifers at the expense of late-successional conifers, but compositional shifts were not associated with climate moisture index. Our results emphasize the importance of climate change on background compositional shifts in the boreal forest and suggest further compositional shifts as rising CO2 and warming will continue in the 21st century. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  6. Quantifying the missing link between forest albedo and productivity in the boreal zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hovi, Aarne; Liang, Jingjing; Korhonen, Lauri; Kobayashi, Hideki; Rautiainen, Miina

    2016-11-01

    Albedo and fraction of absorbed photosynthetically active radiation (FAPAR) determine the shortwave radiation balance and productivity of forests. Currently, the physical link between forest albedo and productivity is poorly understood, yet it is crucial for designing optimal forest management strategies for mitigating climate change. We investigated the relationships between boreal forest structure, albedo and FAPAR using a radiative transfer model called Forest Reflectance and Transmittance model FRT and extensive forest inventory data sets ranging from southern boreal forests to the northern tree line in Finland and Alaska (N = 1086 plots). The forests in the study areas vary widely in structure, species composition, and human interference, from intensively managed in Finland to natural growth in Alaska. We show that FAPAR of tree canopies (FAPARCAN) and albedo are tightly linked in boreal coniferous forests, but the relationship is weaker if the forest has broadleaved admixture, or if canopies have low leaf area and the composition of forest floor varies. Furthermore, the functional shape of the relationship between albedo and FAPARCAN depends on the angular distribution of incoming solar irradiance. We also show that forest floor can contribute to over 50 % of albedo or total ecosystem FAPAR. Based on our simulations, forest albedos can vary notably across the biome. Because of larger proportions of broadleaved trees, the studied plots in Alaska had higher albedo (0.141-0.184) than those in Finland (0.136-0.171) even though the albedo of pure coniferous forests was lower in Alaska. Our results reveal that variation in solar angle will need to be accounted for when evaluating climate effects of forest management in different latitudes. Furthermore, increasing the proportion of broadleaved trees in coniferous forests is the most important means of maximizing albedo without compromising productivity: based on our findings the potential of controlling forest

  7. High upward fluxes of formic acid from a boreal forest canopy: HIGH HCOOH FLUXES FROM A BOREAL FOREST

    DOE PAGES

    Schobesberger, Siegfried; Lopez-Hilfiker, Felipe D.; Taipale, Ditte; ...

    2016-09-14

    Eddy covariance fluxes of formic acid, HCOOH, were measured over a boreal forest canopy in spring/summer 2014. The HCOOH fluxes were bidirectional but mostly upward during daytime, in contrast to studies elsewhere that reported mostly downward fluxes. Downward flux episodes were explained well by modeled dry deposition rates. The sum of net observed flux and modeled dry deposition yields an upward “gross flux” of HCOOH, which could not be quantitatively explained by literature estimates of direct vegetative/soil emissions nor by efficient chemical production from other volatile organic compounds, suggesting missing or greatly underestimated HCOOH sources in the boreal ecosystem. Wemore » implemented a vegetative HCOOH source into the GEOS-Chem chemical transport model to match our derived gross flux and evaluated the updated model against airborne and spaceborne observations. Model biases in the boundary layer were substantially reduced based on this revised treatment, but biases in the free troposphere remain unexplained.« less

  8. The changing effects of Alaska's boreal forest on the climate system

    Treesearch

    E.S. Euskirchen; A.D. McGuire; F.S. Chapin; T.S. Rupp

    2010-01-01

    In the boreal forests of Alaska, recent changes in climate have influenced the exchange of trace gases, water, and energy between these forests and the atmosphere. These changes in the structure and function of boreal forests can then feed back to impact regional and global climates. We examine the type and magnitude of the climate feedbacks from boreal forests in...

  9. Ground vegetation reduces forest floor net CH4 uptake in a boreal upland forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pihlatie, Mari; Kieloaho, Antti-Jussi; Halmeenmäki, Elisa; Ryhti, Kira; Heinonsalo, Jussi

    2017-04-01

    Boreal upland forests are considered as an important sink for the greenhouse gas methane (CH4) due to CH4 oxidizing microbes in the soil. Recent studies have reported significant CH4 emissions from trees in both upland and wetland forests, however, contribution of ground vegetation to the net CH4 exchange has not been assessed. As the processes and process drivers of the CH4 emissions from vegetation are still poorly understood, partitioning the CH4 exchange in forest ecosystems to soil, ground vegetation and trees is a way to improve our understanding of the CH4 cycling processes in forest ecosystems. We measured the forest floor CH4 exchange at a Scots pine dominated boreal upland forest in Southern Finland (SMEAR II station) during the growing season 2015. The forest floor consisted of mostly shrubs of bilberry (Vaccinium myrtillus), lingonberry (Vaccinium vitis-idaea), heather (Calluna vulgaris), and forest floor mosses (Pleurozium schreberi, Hylocomium splendens, and Dicranum polysetum). We measured the CH4 fluxes using transparent chambers under three vegetation treatments: normal vegetation (normal), shrubs only (shrubs), and non-vegetated (cut), and under three soil trenching treatments: control, 50 μm mesh (roots of trees and shrubs excluded), and 1 μm mesh (roots of trees and shrubs, and microbes excluded). Forest floor acted as a sink of CH4 in all the vegetation and trenching treatments. Presence of ground layer vegetation significantly reduced the forest floor CH4 uptake, whereas soil trenching did not affect the CH4 exchange. Over the period of May - October 2015, the mean forest floor CH4 fluxes were -53.7 (± 3.1 SE), -96.7 (± 3.7), and -91.4 (± 4.3) μg CH4 m2 h-1 from normal, shrubs and cut treatments, respectively. The presence of ground vegetation hence nearly halved the forest floor CH4 uptake compared to the shrubs only and cut treatments. As the largest difference between normal and shrubs treatments were the absence of mosses, our

  10. Growth decline linked to warming-induced water limitation in hemi-boreal forests.

    PubMed

    Wu, Xiuchen; Liu, Hongyan; Guo, Dali; Anenkhonov, Oleg A; Badmaeva, Natalya K; Sandanov, Denis V

    2012-01-01

    Hemi-boreal forests, which make up the transition from temperate deciduous forests to boreal forests in southern Siberia, have experienced significant warming without any accompanying increase in precipitation during the last 80 years. This climatic change could have a profound impact on tree growth and on the stability of forest ecosystems in this region, but at present evidence for these impacts is lacking. In this study, we report a recent dramatic decline in the growth of hemi-boreal forests, based on ring width measurements from three dominant tree-species (Pinus sylvestris, Larix sibirica and Larix gmelinii), sampled from eight sites in the region. We found that regional tree growth has become increasingly limited by low soil water content in the pre- and early-growing season (from October of the previous year to July of the current year) over the past 80 years. A warming-induced reduction in soil water content has also increased the climate sensitivity of these three tree species. Beginning in the mid-1980s, a clear decline in growth is evident for both the pine forests and the larch forests, although there are increasing trends in the proxy of soil water use efficiencies. Our findings are consistent with those from other parts of the world and provide valuable insights into the regional carbon cycle and vegetation dynamics, and should be useful for devising adaptive forest management strategies.

  11. Growth Decline Linked to Warming-Induced Water Limitation in Hemi-Boreal Forests

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Xiuchen; Liu, Hongyan; Guo, Dali; Anenkhonov, Oleg A.; Badmaeva, Natalya K.; Sandanov, Denis V.

    2012-01-01

    Hemi-boreal forests, which make up the transition from temperate deciduous forests to boreal forests in southern Siberia, have experienced significant warming without any accompanying increase in precipitation during the last 80 years. This climatic change could have a profound impact on tree growth and on the stability of forest ecosystems in this region, but at present evidence for these impacts is lacking. In this study, we report a recent dramatic decline in the growth of hemi-boreal forests, based on ring width measurements from three dominant tree-species (Pinus sylvestris, Larix sibirica and Larix gmelinii), sampled from eight sites in the region. We found that regional tree growth has become increasingly limited by low soil water content in the pre- and early-growing season (from October of the previous year to July of the current year) over the past 80 years. A warming-induced reduction in soil water content has also increased the climate sensitivity of these three tree species. Beginning in the mid-1980s, a clear decline in growth is evident for both the pine forests and the larch forests, although there are increasing trends in the proxy of soil water use efficiencies. Our findings are consistent with those from other parts of the world and provide valuable insights into the regional carbon cycle and vegetation dynamics, and should be useful for devising adaptive forest management strategies. PMID:22916142

  12. CO2 flux studies of different hemiboreal forest ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krasnova, Alisa; Krasnov, Dmitrii; Noe, Steffen M.; Uri, Veiko; Mander, Ülo; Niinemets, Ülo; Soosaar, Kaido

    2017-04-01

    Hemiboreal zone is a transition between boreal and temperate zones characterized by the combination of climatic and edaphic conditions inherent in both zones. Hemiboreal forests are typically presented by mixed forests types with different ratios of deciduous and conifer tree species. Dominating tree species composition affects the functioning of forest ecosystem and its influence on biogeochemical cycles. We present the result of ecosystem scale CO2 eddy-covariance fluxes research conducted in 4 ecosystems (3 forests sites and 1 clear-cut area) of hemiboreal zone in Estonia. All 4 sites were developing under similar climatic conditions, but different forest management practices resulted in different composition of dominating tree species: pine forest with spruce trees as a second layer (Soontaga site); spruce/birch forest with single alder trees (Liispõllu site); forest presented by sectors of pine, spruce, birch and clearcut areas (SMEAR Estonia site); 5-years old clearcut area (Kõnnu site).

  13. Silviculture for restoration of degraded temperate and boreal forests

    Treesearch

    John A. Stanturf; Palle Madsen; Emile S. Gardiner

    2004-01-01

    Throughout the temperate and boreal zones, human intervention has influenced landscapes and forests for millennia. The degree of human disturbance has only been constrained by the technology and resources available to different cultures and by time since initial habitation. Humans have influenced forests by regulating populations of browsers, clearing for agriculture,...

  14. Earlier springs decrease peak summer productivity in North American boreal forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buermann, Wolfgang; Bikash, Parida R.; Jung, Martin; Burn, Donald H.; Reichstein, Markus

    2013-06-01

    In the northern high latitudes, alternative hypotheses with regards to how warming-related shifts in seasonality influence ecosystem productivity exist. Increased plant growth associated with a longer growing season may enhance ecosystem productivity, but shifts to earlier springs may also negatively influence soil moisture status and productivity during the peak of the growing season. Here, we analyzed nearly three decades (1982-2008) of observational records and derived products, including satellite microwave and optical imagery as well as upscaled ecosystem flux observations, to better understand how shifts in seasonality impact hydrology and productivity in the North American boreal forests. We identified a dominant adverse influence of earlier springs on peak summer forest greenness, actual evapotranspiration and productivity at interannual time scales across the drier western and central sections of the North American boreal forests. In the vast regions where this spring onset mechanism operates, ecosystem productivity gains from earlier springs during the early portion of the growing season are effectively cancelled through corresponding losses in the later portion. Our results also indicate that recent decadal shifts towards earlier springs and associated drying in the midst of the growing season over western North American boreal forests may have contributed to the reported declines in summer productivity and increases in tree mortality and fire activity. With projections of accelerated northern high-latitude warming and associated shifts to earlier springs, persistent soil moisture deficits in peak summer may be an effective mechanism for regional-scale boreal forest dieback through their strong influence on productivity, tree mortality and disturbance dynamics.

  15. Boreal forest soil nitrous oxide production and consumption responds positively to temperature and a warmer climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buckeridge, K. M.; Edwards, K.; Ziegler, S. E.; Billings, S. A.

    2014-12-01

    The greenhouse gas nitrous oxide (N2O) is both produced and consumed in soils. In strict denitrification, nitrogen (N)-oxides are reduced stepwise by microbial enzymes until dinitrogen (N2) is produced. N2O may be lost and/or consumed during this process, by microbes that may or may not possess the enzyme required for the final step of the reduction chain. In cold, N-limited, boreal forest soils consumption may dominate, resulting in low net N2O flux to the atmosphere, though the ubiquity of this pattern and the temperature response of these processes are unclear. To accurately predict the temperature response of net soil efflux of N2O in the boreal biome, we must understand fundamental, temperature responses of the boreal soil denitrifier community. Using boreal forest organic and mineral soils collected from three climate regions along the Newfoundland and Labrador Boreal Ecosystem Latitudinal Transect, Canada, we measured soil N2O fluxes during ~60 h lab incubations, in which conditions for denitrification were optimized. Organic soils from the warmer climate and incubated at the warmest temperature produced the most N2O. These soils also experienced net consumption of N2O earlier in the incubation than other soils. All mineral soils, regardless of location along the climate gradient, exhibited net N2O consumption earliest in the incubation at the warmest incubation temperature. Ongoing analyses of headspace N2O and N2 d15N and relative abundances of denitrifying communities during the incubation will reveal mechanisms driving changes in [N2O] over time, but these data suggest warmer temperatures in these boreal soils promote enhanced rates of both N2O production and consumption, with 'hot moments' of net N2O efflux during which production far exceeds consumption. If these results are applicable in situ, a warming climate may result in greater net N2O flux from boreal forest soils such as these.

  16. Oxygenated VOC and monoterpene emissions from a boreal coniferous forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taipale, R.; Rantala, P.; Kajos, M. K.; Patokoski, J.; Ruuskanen, T. M.; Aalto, J.; Kolari, P.; Bäck, J.; Hari, P.; Kulmala, M.; Rinne, J.

    2012-04-01

    Compared with terpenoids, emissions of oxygenated volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from boreal ecosystems have been poorly characterized. We measured ecosystem scale emissions of three oxygenated compounds (methanol, acetaldehyde, and acetone) and monoterpenes from a Scots pine dominated forest in southern Finland during the summers 2006-2008. The measurements were conducted using the disjunct eddy covariance method combined with proton transfer reaction mass spectrometry. The contribution of the three oxygenated compounds to the measured total emissions was 40-60 %. The highest oxygenated VOC emissions were those of methanol, comprising 20-30 % of the total, followed by acetone with a share of 10-20 %. The acetaldehyde emissions were 5-10 % of the total. This emission composition will be compared with that obtained from shoot enclosure measurements. Methanol showed deposition during some periods although its overall flux was towards the atmosphere. The monoterpene emissions had a light dependent component, suggesting that part of the emissions originated directly from monoterpene biosynthesis. Diurnal, seasonal, and inter-annual variations in the emissions, along with temperature and light dependencies, will be discussed.

  17. Spatially explicit estimation of aboveground boreal forest biomass in the Yukon River Basin, Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ji, Lei; Wylie, Bruce K.; Brown, Dana R. N.; Peterson, Birgit E.; Alexander, Heather D.; Mack, Michelle C.; Rover, Jennifer R.; Waldrop, Mark P.; McFarland, Jack W.; Chen, Xuexia; Pastick, Neal J.

    2015-01-01

    Quantification of aboveground biomass (AGB) in Alaska’s boreal forest is essential to the accurate evaluation of terrestrial carbon stocks and dynamics in northern high-latitude ecosystems. Our goal was to map AGB at 30 m resolution for the boreal forest in the Yukon River Basin of Alaska using Landsat data and ground measurements. We acquired Landsat images to generate a 3-year (2008–2010) composite of top-of-atmosphere reflectance for six bands as well as the brightness temperature (BT). We constructed a multiple regression model using field-observed AGB and Landsat-derived reflectance, BT, and vegetation indices. A basin-wide boreal forest AGB map at 30 m resolution was generated by applying the regression model to the Landsat composite. The fivefold cross-validation with field measurements had a mean absolute error (MAE) of 25.7 Mg ha−1 (relative MAE 47.5%) and a mean bias error (MBE) of 4.3 Mg ha−1(relative MBE 7.9%). The boreal forest AGB product was compared with lidar-based vegetation height data; the comparison indicated that there was a significant correlation between the two data sets.

  18. Amine Measurements in Boreal Forest Air

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hemmilä, Marja; Hellén, Heidi; Makkonen, Ulla; Hakola, Hannele

    2015-04-01

    Amines are reactive, volatile bases in the air with a general formula of RNH2, R2NH or R3N. Especially small amines can stabilize sulphuric acid clusters and hence affect nucleation. Amines react rapidly with hydroxyl radical (OH˙) thus affecting oxidative capacity of the atmosphere. The amine concentrations are higher in forest air than in urban air (Hellén et al., 2014), but the sources are not known. In order to get more information concerning amine sources, we conducted a measurement campaign in a boreal forest. At SMEAR II station at Hyytiälä, Southern Finland (61°510'N, 24°170'E, 180 m a.s.l.) The measurements cover seven months, from June to December 2014. For sampling and measuring we used MARGA (The instrument for Measuring AeRosols and Gases in Ambient air) which is an on-line ion chromatograph (IC) connected to a sampling system. The IC component of the MARGA system was coupled to an electrospray ionization quadrupole mass spectrometer (MS) to improve sensitivity of amine measurements. This new set-up enabled amine concentration measurements in ambient air both in aerosol and gas phases with a time resolution of only 1 hour. With MARGA-MS we analysed 7 different amines: monomethylamine (MMA), dimethylamine (DMA), trimethylamine (TMA), ethylamine (EA), diethylamine (DEA), propylamine (PA) and butylamine (BA). In preliminary data-analysis we found out, that in June and July most of the measured amines were in gas phase, and particle phase amine concentrations were mostly under detection limits (<1.7 pptv). In June the gaseous amine concentrations were higher than in July. The measured concentrations of gaseous amines followed temperature variation, which could indicate that amines are produced and emitted from the environment or re-emitted from the surfaces as temperature rises after deposition during night-time. All measured amines had similar diurnal variation with maxima during afternoon and minima during night. Results from other months will also

  19. Widespread Burning of Alaskan Boreal Forests Overcomes Fuel Limitation in the 21st Century

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kelly, R.; Hu, F.

    2015-12-01

    Fire is a key determinant of the structure and function of boreal forest ecosystems. Boreal fire regimes have been climate-limited in recent decades, and future climate warming is predicted to drive a pronounced increase in fire activity, likely resulting in carbon release from the boreal biome and positive feedback to climate change. Fuel limitation could slow fire regime change by reducing the abundance of mature vegetation on the landscape, but this mechanism remains poorly quantified and is thus excluded from forecasts of future boreal burning. We developed a novel statistical model that links regional area burned to mean landscape age, a proxy for fuel limitation due to cumulative past burning. Fit to historical fire observations from interior Alaska, the model detects significant evidence of fire-vegetation feedback and provides the first quantitative estimate of its effects on regional fire regimes. These effects were subtle during the past 60 yr, but they will become increasingly influential as climate warming promotes higher fire activity. By the end of the 21st century, fuel limitation reduces predicted area burned by 40-50% relative to predictions based on climate alone, and diminishes the difference between fire regimes expected under alternate future climate scenarios. Nevertheless, annual area burned will approximately double during the coming century as fire becomes more widespread in spite of regional fuel limitation. Furthermore, changes to the fire regime and mean landscape age by the end of the century could represent a fundamental shift in the Alaskan boreal ecosystem. Our model structure facilitates linking fire regime predictions to ecosystem and Earth system models and could help reduce uncertainty in these models due to poorly constrained initial conditions. We demonstrate this approach using the Terrestrial Ecosystem Model, which has been calibrated extensively for applications in simulating boreal carbon dynamics. Results suggest that

  20. Disentangling Modern Fire-Climate-Vegetation Relationships across the Boreal Forest Biome

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Young, A. M.; Boschetti, L.; Duffy, P.; Hu, F.; Higuera, P.

    2015-12-01

    Fire regimes differ between Eurasian and North American boreal forests, due in part to differences in climate and the dominant forest types. While North American boreal forests are dominated by stand-replacing fires, much of the Eurasian boreal forest is characterized by lower intensity surface fires. These different fire regimes have important consequences for continental-scale biogeochemical cycling and surface-energy fluxes1. Here, we use generalized linear models (GLM) and boosted regression trees (BRT) to explore the relative importance of vegetation, annual climatic factors, and their interactions in determining annual fire occurrence across Eurasian and North American boreal forests. We use remotely sensed burned area (MCD64A1), land cover (MCD12Q1), and observed climate data (CRU) from 2002-2012 at 0.25° spatial resolution to quantify these relationships at annual temporal scales and continental spatial scales. The spatial distribution of boreal fire occurrence was well explained with climate and vegetation variables, with similarities and differences in fire-climate-vegetation relationships between Eurasia and North America. For example, while GLMs indicate vegetation is a significant factor determining fire occurrence in both continents, the effect of climate differed. Spring temperature and precipitation are significant factors explaining fire occurrence in Eurasia, but no climate variables were significant for explaining fire occurrence in North America. BRTs complement this analysis, highlighting climatic thresholds to fire occurrence in both continents. The nature of these thresholds can vary among vegetation types, even within each continent, further implying regional sensitivity to climate-induced shifts in wildfire activity. To build on these results and better understand regional sensitivity of northern-high latitude fire regimes, future work will explore these relationships in forest-tundra and arctic tundra ecosystems, and apply historical

  1. The climate responses of tropical and boreal ecosystems with an improved land surface model (JULES)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harper, Anna; Friedlingstein, Pierre; Cox, Peter; Wiltshire, Andy; Jones, Chris

    2016-04-01

    The Joint UK Land Environment Simulator (JULES) is the land surface of the next generation UK Earth System Model (UKESM1). Recently, JULES was updated with new plant functional types and physiology based on a global plant trait database. These developments improved the simulation of terrestrial gross and net primary productivity on local and global scales, and enabled a more realistic representation of the global distribution of vegetation. In this study, we explore the present-day distribution of ecosystems and their vulnerability to climate change in JULES with these improvements, focusing on tropical and boreal ecosystems. Changes to these ecosystems will have implications for biogeophysical and biogeochemical feedbacks to climate change and need to be understood. First, we examine the simulated and observed rainforest-savannah boundary, which is strongly related to annual precipitation and the maximum climatological water deficit. Second, we assess the length of growing season and biomass stored in boreal ecosystems, where 20th century warming has likely extended the growing season. In each case, we first evaluate the ability of JULES to capture observed climate-vegetation relationships and trends. Finally, we run JULES to 2100 using climate data from 3 models and 2 RCP scenarios, and examine potential 21st century changes to these ecosystems. For example, do the tropical forests shrink in response to changes in tropical rainfall seasonality? And, how does the composition of boreal ecosystems change in response to climate warming? Given the potential for climate feedbacks and the inherent value in these ecosystems, it is essential to assess their responses to a range of climate change scenarios.

  2. Evaporation within and above a boreal aspen forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blanken, Peter David

    1997-12-01

    As part of the Boreal Ecosystem-Atmosphere Study, water vapour, heat, CO2 and momentum exchange between the atmosphere and a southern boreal aspen (Populus tremuloides Michx.) forest in central Saskatchewan, Canada (53.629oN, 106.200oW) were measured continuously throughout much of 1994 using the eddy-covariance method. Measurements were made both above the c. 21.5-m tall 70 year-old aspen stand and within the leafless trunk space above a lush c. 2-m tall hazelnut (Corylus cornuta Marsh.) understory. This research focused on the measurements of and processes controlling water vapour exchange within and above the aspen canopy. Above-canopy turbulent exchange was dominated by large, slowly rotating eddies whereas in-canopy exchange was dominated by the intermittent, downward penetration of gusts. A constant flux layer redeveloped beneath the aspen canopy making eddy-covariance measurements possible. Nocturnal eddy fluxes were often underestimated at both heights due to spatial heterogeneity in turbulence statistics caused by low wind speeds. These periods were identified from the height-independent similarity function normalized by that expected from Monin-Obukhov theory and were empirically corrected as a function of friction velocity. Erratic daytime flux behaviour was corrected on the basis of conservation of energy and partitioning of the missing energy using the original eddy fluxes of latent and sensible heat. Evapotranspiration from the forest accounted for 82-91% of the annual precipitation. Aspen, hazelnut transpiration and soil water evaporation were 68%, 27% and 5%, respectively, of the total annual evapotranspiration. Over the growing season, there was no net change in the soil water content and there was little drainage beyond the root zone. Understory radiation levels decreased exponetially with increasing aspen leaf area. Surface conductance to water vapour was a linear function of forest leaf area and was dominated by the aspen canopy. Aspen and

  3. High Upward Fluxes of Formic Acid from a Boreal Forest Canopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schobesberger, S.; Lopez-Hilfiker, F.; Taipale, D.; Millet, D. B.; D'Ambro, E.; Mammarella, I.; Zhou, P.; Wolfe, G.; Lee, B. H.; Boy, M.; Thornton, J. A.

    2016-12-01

    Formic acid, HCOOH, is one of the most abundant carboxylic acids found in the atmosphere, affecting cloud chemistry and acidity, and as a common product in the oxidative processing of volatile organic compounds (VOC), it provides constraints on the importance of various pathways and precursors. Yet, significant uncertainties in the sources and sinks of HCOOH concentrations remain. We present measurements of HCOOH mixing ratios and eddy fluxes over a boreal forest canopy in spring/summer. Boreal forests have been identified as a key region for much of the global production of HCOOH, as well as for our lack of understanding of the underlying processes. To our knowledge, these are the first direct measurements of HCOOH exchange above a boreal forest ecosystem. The measured HCOOH fluxes were bidirectional, but mostly upward during daytime, in contrast to studies made elsewhere that reported mostly downward fluxes. Episodes of downward flux were explained well by standard resistor models of dry deposition. The sum of net observed flux and modeled deposition yields an upward "gross flux" of HCOOH, which could not be quantitatively explained by literature estimates of direct vegetative/soil emissions nor by efficient chemical production from other VOC (e.g. monoterpenes). These observations suggest greatly underestimated HCOOH sources, by up to a factor of 10, of biogenic origin in the boreal forest. We implemented a vegetative HCOOH source into the GEOS-Chem chemical transport model to match our derived gross flux, and evaluated the updated model against air- and space-borne HCOOH observations. Model biases in the boundary layer were substantially reduced based on this revised treatment, suggesting that a significant fraction of the missing HCOOH source in boreal regions is located within or just above the forest canopy. Biases in the free troposphere remain unexplained.

  4. Spatial variation in vegetation productivity trends, fire disturbance, and soil carbon across arctic-boreal permafrost ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Loranty, Michael M.; Liberman-Cribbin, Wil; Berner, Logan T.; Natali, Susan M.; Goetz, Scott J.; Alexander, Heather D.; Kholodov, Alexander L.

    2016-09-01

    In arctic tundra and boreal forest ecosystems vegetation structural and functional influences on the surface energy balance can strongly influence permafrost soil temperatures. As such, vegetation changes will likely play an important role in permafrost soil carbon dynamics and associated climate feedbacks. Processes that lead to changes in vegetation, such as wildfire or ecosystem responses to rising temperatures, are of critical importance to understanding the impacts of arctic and boreal ecosystems on future climate. Yet these processes vary within and between ecosystems and this variability has not been systematically characterized across the arctic-boreal region. Here we quantify the distribution of vegetation productivity trends, wildfire, and near-surface soil carbon, by vegetation type, across the zones of continuous and discontinuous permafrost. Siberian larch forests contain more than one quarter of permafrost soil carbon in areas of continuous permafrost. We observe pervasive positive trends in vegetation productivity in areas of continuous permafrost, whereas areas underlain by discontinuous permafrost have proportionally less positive productivity trends and an increase in areas exhibiting negative productivity trends. Fire affects a much smaller proportion of the total area and thus a smaller amount of permafrost soil carbon, with the vast majority occurring in deciduous needleleaf forests. Our results indicate that vegetation productivity trends may be linked to permafrost distribution, fire affects a relatively small proportion of permafrost soil carbon, and Siberian larch forests will play a crucial role in the strength of the permafrost carbon climate feedback.

  5. Modeled Climate and Disturbance Impacts to Carbon Sequestration of Recent Interior Boreal Alaska Ecosystem Productivity Declines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neigh, C. S.; Carvalhais, N.; Collatz, G. J.; Tucker, C. J.

    2010-12-01

    Terrestrial Higher Northern Latitude Boreal ecosystems over the past half century have and are expected to incur substantial future climate warming altering long-term biophysical processes that mediate carbon sink status. Boreal ecosystems are one of the primary terrestrial pools with high organic and mineral soil carbon concentrations due to reduced decomposition from extended periods below freezing. Direct impacts of changing local to regional climate have altered Interior Alaska disturbance regimes shifting patterns of net primary production (NPP), soil heterotrophic respiration (Rh), net ecosystem production (NEP = NPP - Rh) and net biome production (NBP = NEP - De) which includes disturbance events (De). We investigated ecosystem dynamics with a satellite remote sensing driven model accounting for fine-scale heterogeneous events observed from multi temporal-spectral index vectors derived from Landsat. Our intent was to elucidate local to regional processes which have resulted in negative trends observed from the NOAA series of Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometers (AVHRR) over the past decade. The Carnegie-Ames-Stanford approach (CASA) model was run with changing fractional burned area to simulate bi-monthly patterns of net plant carbon fixation, biomass and nutrient allocation, litterfall, soil nitrogen mineralization, combustion emissions, and microbial CO2 production. Carbon reallocation was based on fire disturbances identified with remote sensing data (Landsat, IKONOS, and aerial photography) and disturbance perimeter maps from land management agencies. Warming coupled with insect and fire disturbance emissions reduced interior Boreal forest recalcitrant carbon pools for which losses greatly exceed the North Slope Tundra sink. Our multi spatial-temporal approach confirms substantial forested NPP declines in Landsat and AVHRR while distinguishing abiotic and biophysical disturbance frequency impacts upon NBP.

  6. Carbon allocation in forest ecosystems

    Treesearch

    Creighton M. Litton; James W. Raich; Michael G. Ryan

    2007-01-01

    Carbon allocation plays a critical role in forest ecosystem carbon cycling. We reviewed existing literature and compiled annual carbon budgets for forest ecosystems to test a series of hypotheses addressing the patterns, plasticity, and limits of three components of allocation: biomass, the amount of material present; flux, the flow of carbon to a component per unit...

  7. Continental divide: Predicting climate-mediated fragmentation and biodiversity loss in the boreal forest.

    PubMed

    Murray, Dennis L; Peers, Michael J L; Majchrzak, Yasmine N; Wehtje, Morgan; Ferreira, Catarina; Pickles, Rob S A; Row, Jeffrey R; Thornton, Daniel H

    2017-01-01

    Climate change threatens natural landscapes through shifting distribution and abundance of species and attendant change in the structure and function of ecosystems. However, it remains unclear how climate-mediated variation in species' environmental niche space may lead to large-scale fragmentation of species distributions, altered meta-population dynamics and gene flow, and disrupted ecosystem integrity. Such change may be especially relevant when species distributions are restricted either spatially or to a narrow environmental niche, or when environments are rapidly changing. Here, we use range-wide environmental niche models to posit that climate-mediated range fragmentation aggravates the direct effects of climate change on species in the boreal forest of North America. We show that climate change will directly alter environmental niche suitability for boreal-obligate species of trees, birds and mammals (n = 12), with most species ranges becoming smaller and shifting northward through time. Importantly, species distributions will become increasingly fragmented, as characterized by smaller mean size and greater isolation of environmentally-suitable landscape patches. This loss is especially pronounced along the Ontario-Québec border, where the boreal forest is narrowest and roughly 78% of suitable niche space could disappear by 2080. Despite the diversity of taxa surveyed, patterns of range fragmentation are remarkably consistent, with our models predicting that spruce grouse (Dendragapus canadensis), boreal chickadee (Poecile hudsonicus), moose (Alces americanus) and caribou (Rangifer tarandus) could have entirely disjunct east-west population segments in North America. These findings reveal potentially dire consequences of climate change on population continuity and species diversity in the boreal forest, highlighting the need to better understand: 1) extent and primary drivers of anticipated climate-mediated range loss and fragmentation; 2) diversity of

  8. Continental divide: Predicting climate-mediated fragmentation and biodiversity loss in the boreal forest

    PubMed Central

    Murray, Dennis L.; Peers, Michael J. L.; Majchrzak, Yasmine N.; Wehtje, Morgan; Ferreira, Catarina; Pickles, Rob S. A.; Row, Jeffrey R.; Thornton, Daniel H.

    2017-01-01

    Climate change threatens natural landscapes through shifting distribution and abundance of species and attendant change in the structure and function of ecosystems. However, it remains unclear how climate-mediated variation in species’ environmental niche space may lead to large-scale fragmentation of species distributions, altered meta-population dynamics and gene flow, and disrupted ecosystem integrity. Such change may be especially relevant when species distributions are restricted either spatially or to a narrow environmental niche, or when environments are rapidly changing. Here, we use range-wide environmental niche models to posit that climate-mediated range fragmentation aggravates the direct effects of climate change on species in the boreal forest of North America. We show that climate change will directly alter environmental niche suitability for boreal-obligate species of trees, birds and mammals (n = 12), with most species ranges becoming smaller and shifting northward through time. Importantly, species distributions will become increasingly fragmented, as characterized by smaller mean size and greater isolation of environmentally-suitable landscape patches. This loss is especially pronounced along the Ontario-Québec border, where the boreal forest is narrowest and roughly 78% of suitable niche space could disappear by 2080. Despite the diversity of taxa surveyed, patterns of range fragmentation are remarkably consistent, with our models predicting that spruce grouse (Dendragapus canadensis), boreal chickadee (Poecile hudsonicus), moose (Alces americanus) and caribou (Rangifer tarandus) could have entirely disjunct east-west population segments in North America. These findings reveal potentially dire consequences of climate change on population continuity and species diversity in the boreal forest, highlighting the need to better understand: 1) extent and primary drivers of anticipated climate-mediated range loss and fragmentation; 2) diversity of

  9. Sources and sinks of carbon in boreal ecosystems of interior Alaska: a review

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Douglas, Thomas A.; Jones, Miriam C.; Hiemstra, Christopher A.

    2014-01-01

    Boreal regions store large quantities of carbon but are increasingly vulnerable to carbon loss due to disturbance and climate warming. The boreal region, underlain by discontinuous permafrost, presents a challenging landscape for itemizing current and potential carbon sources and sinks in the boreal soil and vegetation. The roles of fire, forest succession, and the presence (or absence) of permafrost on carbon cycle, vegetation, and hydrologic processes have been the focus of multidisciplinary research in this area for the past 20 years. However, projections of a warming future climate, an increase in fire severity and extent, and the potential degradation of permafrost could lead to major landscape process changes over the next 20 to 50 years. This provides a major challenge for predicting how the interplay between land management activities and impacts of climate warming will affect carbon sources and sinks in Interior Alaska. To assist land managers in adapting and managing for potential changes in the Interior Alaska carbon cycle we developed this review paper incorporating an overview of the climate, ecosystem processes, vegetation types, and soil regimes in Interior Alaska with a focus on ramifications for the carbon cycle. Our objective is to provide a synthesis of the most current carbon storage estimates and measurements to support policy and land management decisions on how to best manage carbon sources and sinks in Interior Alaska. To support this we have surveyed relevant peer reviewed estimates of carbon stocks in aboveground and belowground biomass for Interior Alaska boreal ecosystems. We have also summarized methane and carbon dioxide fluxes from the same ecosystems. These data have been converted into the same units to facilitate comparison across ecosystem compartments. We identify potential changes in the carbon cycle with climate change and human disturbance including how compounding disturbances can affect the boreal system. Finally, we provide

  10. Resilience of Alaska's Boreal Forest to Climatic Change

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chapin, F. S., III; McGuire, A. D.; Ruess, R. W.; Hollingsworth, T. N.; Mack, M. C.; Johnstone, J. F.; Kasischke, E. S.; Euskirchen, E. S.; Jones, J. B.; Jorgenson, M. T.; hide

    2010-01-01

    This paper assesses the resilience of Alaska s boreal forest system to rapid climatic change. Recent warming is associated with reduced growth of dominant tree species, plant disease and insect outbreaks, warming and thawing of permafrost, drying of lakes, increased wildfire extent, increased postfire recruitment of deciduous trees, and reduced safety of hunters traveling on river ice. These changes have modified key structural features, feedbacks, and interactions in the boreal forest, including reduced effects of upland permafrost on regional hydrology, expansion of boreal forest into tundra, and amplification of climate warming because of reduced albedo (shorter winter season) and carbon release from wildfires. Other temperature-sensitive processes for which no trends have been detected include composition of plant and microbial communities, long-term landscape-scale change in carbon stocks, stream discharge, mammalian population dynamics, and river access and subsistence opportunities for rural indigenous communities. Projections of continued warming suggest that Alaska s boreal forest will undergo significant functional and structural changes within the next few decades that are unprecedented in the last 6000 years. The impact of these social ecological changes will depend in part on the extent of landscape reorganization between uplands and lowlands and on policies regulating subsistence opportunities for rural communities.

  11. Resilience of Alaska's boreal forest to climate change

    Treesearch

    F.S. Chapin; A.D. McGuire; R.W. Ruess; T.N. Hollingsworth; M.C. Mack; J.F. Johnstone; E.S. Kasischke; E.S. Euskirchen; J.B. Jones; M.T. Jorgenson; K. Kielland; G.P. Kofinas; M.R. Turetsky; J. Yarie; A.H. Lloyd; D.L. Taylor

    2010-01-01

    This paper assesses the resilience of Alaska's boreal forest system to rapid climatic change. Recent warming is associated with reduced growth of dominant tree species, plant disease and insect outbreaks, warming and thawing of permafrost, drying of lakes, increased wildfire extent, increased postfire recruitment of deciduous trees, and reduced safety of hunters...

  12. Resilience of Alaska’s boreal forest to climatic change

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Chapin, F.S.; McGuire, Anthony; Ruess, Roger W.; Hollingsworth, Teresa N.; Mack, M.C.; Johnstone, J.F.; Kasischke, E.S.; Euskirchen, E.S.; Jones, J.B.; Jorgenson, M.T.; Kielland, K.; Kofinas, G.; Turetsky, M.R.; Yarie, J.; Lloyd, A.H.; Taylor, D.L.

    2010-01-01

    This paper assesses the resilience of Alaska’s boreal forest system to rapid climatic change. Recent warming is associated with reduced growth of dominant tree species, plant disease and insect outbreaks, warming and thawing of permafrost, drying of lakes, increased wildfire extent, increased postfire recruitment of deciduous trees, and reduced safety of hunters traveling on river ice. These changes have modified key structural features, feedbacks, and interactions in the boreal forest, including reduced effects of upland permafrost on regional hydrology, expansion of boreal forest into tundra, and amplification of climate warming because of reduced albedo (shorter winter season) and carbon release from wildfires. Other temperature-sensitive processes for which no trends have been detected include composition of plant and microbial communities, long-term landscape-scale change in carbon stocks, stream discharge, mammalian population dynamics, and river access and subsistence opportunities for rural indigenous communities. Projections of continued warming suggest that Alaska’s boreal forest will undergo significant functional and structural changes within the next few decades that are unprecedented in the last 6000 years. The impact of these social–ecological changes will depend in part on the extent of landscape reorganization between uplands and lowlands and on policies regulating subsistence opportunities for rural communities.

  13. Modeling Alaska boreal forests with a controlled trend surface approach

    Treesearch

    Mo Zhou; Jingjing Liang

    2012-01-01

    An approach of Controlled Trend Surface was proposed to simultaneously take into consideration large-scale spatial trends and nonspatial effects. A geospatial model of the Alaska boreal forest was developed from 446 permanent sample plots, which addressed large-scale spatial trends in recruitment, diameter growth, and mortality. The model was tested on two sets of...

  14. Resilience of Alaska's Boreal Forest to Climatic Change

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chapin, F. S., III; McGuire, A. D.; Ruess, R. W.; Hollingsworth, T. N.; Mack, M. C.; Johnstone, J. F.; Kasischke, E. S.; Euskirchen, E. S.; Jones, J. B.; Jorgenson, M. T.; Kielland, K.; Kofinas, G. P.; Turetsky, M. R.; Yarie, J.; Lloyd, A. H.; Taylor, D. L.

    2010-01-01

    This paper assesses the resilience of Alaska s boreal forest system to rapid climatic change. Recent warming is associated with reduced growth of dominant tree species, plant disease and insect outbreaks, warming and thawing of permafrost, drying of lakes, increased wildfire extent, increased postfire recruitment of deciduous trees, and reduced safety of hunters traveling on river ice. These changes have modified key structural features, feedbacks, and interactions in the boreal forest, including reduced effects of upland permafrost on regional hydrology, expansion of boreal forest into tundra, and amplification of climate warming because of reduced albedo (shorter winter season) and carbon release from wildfires. Other temperature-sensitive processes for which no trends have been detected include composition of plant and microbial communities, long-term landscape-scale change in carbon stocks, stream discharge, mammalian population dynamics, and river access and subsistence opportunities for rural indigenous communities. Projections of continued warming suggest that Alaska s boreal forest will undergo significant functional and structural changes within the next few decades that are unprecedented in the last 6000 years. The impact of these social ecological changes will depend in part on the extent of landscape reorganization between uplands and lowlands and on policies regulating subsistence opportunities for rural communities.

  15. The effects of acid rainfall and heavy metal particulates on a boreal forest ecosystem near the Sudbury smelting region of Canada

    Treesearch

    T. C. Hutchinson

    1976-01-01

    Sulphur dioxide emissions have occurred on a gigantic scale at Sudbury from nickel-copper smelters. Soil erosion has followed the destruction of large areas of forest. Rainfall has been found highly acidic, frequently less than pH 3.0 in 1971. Metal accumulation in the soils (to distances of 50 km) have occurred for nickel and copper. The combination of heavy metal...

  16. Establishment and growth of white spruce on a boreal forest floodplain: interactions between microclimate and mammalian herbivory

    Treesearch

    Amy C. Angell; Knut. Kielland

    2009-01-01

    White spruce (Picea glauca (Moench) Voss) is a dominant species in late-successional ecosystems along the Tanana River, interior Alaska, and the most important commercial timber species in these boreal floodplain forests. Whereas white spruce commonly seed in on young terraces in early primary succession, the species does not become a conspicuous...

  17. Linking sediment-charcoal records and ecological modeling to understand causes of fire-regime change in boreal forests

    Treesearch

    Linda B. Brubaker; Philip E. Higuera; T. Scott Rupp; Mark A. Olson; Patricia M. Anderson; Feng Sheng. Hu

    2009-01-01

    Interactions between vegetation and fire have the potential to overshadow direct effects of climate change on fire regimes in boreal forests of North America. We develop methods to compare sediment-charcoal records with fire regimes simulated by an ecological model, ALFRESCO (Alaskan Frame-based Ecosystem Code) and apply these methods to evaluate potential causes of a...

  18. Major losses of nutrients following a severe drought in a boreal forest.

    PubMed

    Houle, Daniel; Lajoie, Geneviève; Duchesne, Louis

    2016-11-28

    Because of global warming, the frequency and severity of droughts are expected to increase, which will have an impact on forest ecosystem health worldwide(1). Although the impact of drought on tree growth and mortality is being increasingly documented(2-4), very little is known about the impact on nutrient cycling in forest ecosystems. Here, based on long-term monitoring data, we report nutrient fluxes in a boreal forest before, during and following a severe drought in July 2012. During and shortly after the drought, we observed high throughfall (rain collected below the canopy) concentrations of nutrient base cations (potassium, calcium and magnesium), chlorine, phosphorus and dissolved organic carbon (DOC), differing by one to two orders of magnitude relative to the long-term normal, and resulting in important canopy losses. The high throughfall fluxes had repercussions in the soil solution at a depth of 30 cm, leading to high DOC, chlorine and potassium concentrations. The net potassium losses (atmospheric deposition minus leaching losses) following the drought were especially important, being the equivalent of nearly 20 years of net losses under 'normal' conditions. Our data show that droughts have unexpected impacts on nutrient cycling through impacts on tree canopy and soils and may lead to important episodes of potassium losses from boreal forest ecosystems. The potassium losses associated with drought will add to those originating from tree harvesting and from forest fires and insect outbreaks(5-7) (with the last two being expected to increase in the future as a result of climate change), and may contribute to reduced potassium availability in boreal forests in a warming world.

  19. Past, current and future fire frequency in the Canadian boreal forest: implications for sustainable forest management.

    PubMed

    Bergeron, Yves; Flannigan, Mike; Gauthier, Sylvie; Leduc, Alain; Lefort, Patrick

    2004-08-01

    Over the past decades, there has been an increasing interest in the development of forest management approaches that are based on an understanding of historical natural disturbance dynamics. The rationale for such an approach is that management to favor landscape compositions and stand structures similar to those of natural ecosystems should also maintain biological diversity and essential ecological functions. In fire-dominated landscapes, this approach is possible only if current and future fire frequencies are sufficiently low, comparing to pre-industrial fire frequency, that we can substitute fire by forest management. We address this question by comparing current and future fire frequency to historical reconstruction of fire frequency from studies realized in the Canadian boreal forest. Current and simulated future fire frequencies using 2 and 3 x CO2 scenarios are lower than the historical fire frequency for many sites, suggesting that forest management could potentially be used to recreate the forest age structure of fire-controlled pre-industrial landscapes. There are however, important limitations to the current even-age management.

  20. Global change induced biomass growth offsets carbon released via increased forest fire and respiration of the central Canadian boreal forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gonsamo, Alemu; Chen, Jing M.; Colombo, Stephen J.; Ter-Mikaelian, Michael T.; Chen, Jiaxin

    2017-05-01

    Northern boreal forests are sensitive to many effects of global change. This is of particular concern due to the proportionally greater climate change projected for the area in which these forests occur. One of the sensitive areas is the Far North of Ontario (FNO), consisting of one of the world's largest remaining tracts of unmanaged boreal forest, the world's third largest area of wetland, and the most southerly area of tundra. We studied past, present, and potential future carbon (C) balance of FNO forests using the Integrated Terrestrial Ecosystem Carbon Model and the Canadian Regional Climate Model with stand-replacing fire disturbance. The forced simulations of past (1901-2004) C balances indicated that vegetation C stock remained stable, while soil C stock gradually declined (-0.07 t C ha-1 yr-1, p < 0.001), resulting in an overall significant decrease in total ecosystem C balance (-0.07 t C ha-1 yr-1, p < 0.001). Two Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs), RCP8.5 and RCP4.5, simulations of future (2007-2100) C balances indicated that the carbon dioxide fertilization and climate growth-enhancing effects of global change will outweigh C loss through increased ecosystem respiration, disturbance, and changes in forest age class structure resulting in an increase in total FNO ecosystem C stock by mid-21st century. However, the projected simulations also indicated that the relative sizes of forest C stocks will change, with relatively less in the soil and more in vegetation, increasing fuel loads and making the entire ecosystem susceptible to forest fire and insect disturbances.

  1. Production and retention of methylmercury in inundated boreal forest soils.

    PubMed

    Rolfhus, Kristofer R; Hurley, James P; Bodaly, Richard A Drew; Perrine, Gregory

    2015-03-17

    The Flooded Uplands Dynamics Experiment (FLUDEX) was an ecosystem-scale study examining the production of methylmercury (MeHg) and greenhouse gases from reservoirs constructed on an upland boreal forest landscape in order to quantify their dependence upon carbon stores. We detail the within-reservoir production and storage of MeHg before, during, and nine years after the experiment. The reservoirs were net MeHg producers during the first two years of flooding, and net demethylating systems afterward. During years 1-3, a rapid pulse of MeHg and total Hg was observed in floodwater, followed by substantial increases in MeHg in seston and sediment. Resampling of the dry reservoirs nine years after the experiment ended indicated that organic soil MeHg was still 8 to 52-fold higher than preflood conditions, and averaged 86% of the levels recorded at the end of the third flooding year. Both total Hg and MeHg retention in soil were a strong function of organic carbon content. The time scale of soil MeHg retention may help explain the decadal time lag frequently observed for the decrease of piscivorous fish Hg concentrations in new reservoirs. Predicted extreme precipitation events associated with climate change may serve to make landscapes more susceptible to this process.

  2. Drought as a driver of declining boreal forest growth: Integrating forest inventory measurements with models to gain insight into underlying mechanisms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trugman, A. T.; Medvigy, D.; Anderegg, W.; Caspersen, J.; Zeng, H.; Pacala, S. W.

    2016-12-01

    Boreal forests contain over 30% of Earth's terrestrial carbon and are an important component of the land carbon sink. However, the future ability of the boreal forest to maintain a net carbon sink is uncertain and depends on potentially compensating interactions of CO2 fertilization, warmer temperatures, and hotter drought conditions. Observational studies have attributed drought as a major driver of recent declines in growth and increases in mortality in many parts of the North American boreal forest. Yet, most vegetation models have a simplistic representation of vegetation water stress and fail to capture drought-associated growth and mortality trends, impacting our ability to accurately forecast the effects of climate change on the boreal forest. Here, we show additional evidence for widespread declines in boreal tree growth and increasing insect-related mortality in aspen trees based on a mixed model analysis of the Cooperative Alaska Forest Inventory. Our findings indicate that the growth decline is controlled by high midsummer potential evapotranspiration that overpowers any CO2 fertilization signal. We also observe a possible shift in the distribution of angiosperm and gymnosperm, a biological transition that could impact long-term local carbon dynamics. Using insight gained from our mixed model analysis, we perform a regional-scale model evaluation using the boreal forest version of Ecosystem Demography model 2 that includes a dynamic soil organic layer, 7 boreal-specific plant functional types, and a fully mechanistic plant hydraulic scheme. We then use both the Alaskan and Canadian Forest Inventories to constrain our hypotheses and assess whether drought related growth declines can be better attributed to tree drought response from (1) carbon starvation, (2) permanent damage of hydraulic machinery, or (3) delayed recovery of hydraulic machinery. Under each of these scenarios we forecast how drought potentially impacts decadal-scale boreal carbon dynamics.

  3. Resilience and Vulnerability of Arctic and Boreal Ecosystems: Key Mechanisms and Habitats

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Juday, G. P.; Trouillier, M.; Morimoto, M.

    2016-12-01

    The northwestern North American boreal forest experienced a rapid regime shift to elevated temperatures in the mid 1970s, with profound consequences for forests. The common tree species aspen (Asp), Alaska birch (Abir), and white (Wspr) and black spruce display both vulnerability and resilience. Tree growth of all species is well modeled by empirical temperature indices, with both positive and negative temperature relationships. Extreme tree stress and mortality have been detected in radial growth and photo monitoring at Bonanza Creek LTER and across interior boreal Alaska. However, trees on formerly marginally cool sites and regions are resilient or vigorous and accelerating in growth. Wspr experiences an exponential decline in photosynthesis between 21 and 28 deg. C, and such temperatures occur more frequently in the interior boreal region. Abir displays extensive evidence of top dieback from hydraulic conductivity failure, and is experiencing extensive defoliation from leaf miners, as did Asp. However, summer precipitation in interior Alaska has been at record levels since 2014, and unprecedented radial growth occurred in Wspr on the warmest and driest sites. The phenology of Wspr height elongation is effectively modeled by an empirically derived model of temperature and precipitation. The modeled date of cessation of growth occurs earlier by about 3 weeks over the past century, which nearly matches the advance of spring growth. A geographically coherent picture is emerging of systematic climate-driven change, overlain with exceptional events (insect outbreaks, droughts, heavy rains) in space, time, or type. One of the most vulnerable boreal forest habitats is old-growth (150+ yrs.) white spruce, which is a key component of biodiversity, providing important structures for birds, lichens, and mammals, and the most favorable opportunity for wood harvest. Resource management law and policy mandates to maintain ecosystems are mismatched with the unfolding reality.

  4. The human footprint in the carbon cycle of temperate and boreal forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Magnani, Federico; Mencuccini, Maurizio; Borghetti, Marco; Berbigier, Paul; Berninger, Frank; Delzon, Sylvain; Grelle, Achim; Hari, Pertti; Jarvis, Paul G.; Kolari, Pasi; Kowalski, Andrew S.; Lankreijer, Harry; Law, Beverly E.; Lindroth, Anders; Loustau, Denis; Manca, Giovanni; Moncrieff, John B.; Rayment, Mark; Tedeschi, Vanessa; Valentini, Riccardo; Grace, John

    2007-06-01

    Temperate and boreal forests in the Northern Hemisphere cover an area of about 2×107square kilometres and act as a substantial carbon sink (0.6-0.7 petagrams of carbon per year). Although forest expansion following agricultural abandonment is certainly responsible for an important fraction of this carbon sink activity, the additional effects on the carbon balance of established forests of increased atmospheric carbon dioxide, increasing temperatures, changes in management practices and nitrogen deposition are difficult to disentangle, despite an extensive network of measurement stations. The relevance of this measurement effort has also been questioned, because spot measurements fail to take into account the role of disturbances, either natural (fire, pests, windstorms) or anthropogenic (forest harvesting). Here we show that the temporal dynamics following stand-replacing disturbances do indeed account for a very large fraction of the overall variability in forest carbon sequestration. After the confounding effects of disturbance have been factored out, however, forest net carbon sequestration is found to be overwhelmingly driven by nitrogen deposition, largely the result of anthropogenic activities. The effect is always positive over the range of nitrogen deposition covered by currently available data sets, casting doubts on the risk of widespread ecosystem nitrogen saturation under natural conditions. The results demonstrate that mankind is ultimately controlling the carbon balance of temperate and boreal forests, either directly (through forest management) or indirectly (through nitrogen deposition).

  5. The human footprint in the carbon cycle of temperate and boreal forests.

    PubMed

    Magnani, Federico; Mencuccini, Maurizio; Borghetti, Marco; Berbigier, Paul; Berninger, Frank; Delzon, Sylvain; Grelle, Achim; Hari, Pertti; Jarvis, Paul G; Kolari, Pasi; Kowalski, Andrew S; Lankreijer, Harry; Law, Beverly E; Lindroth, Anders; Loustau, Denis; Manca, Giovanni; Moncrieff, John B; Rayment, Mark; Tedeschi, Vanessa; Valentini, Riccardo; Grace, John

    2007-06-14

    Temperate and boreal forests in the Northern Hemisphere cover an area of about 2 x 10(7) square kilometres and act as a substantial carbon sink (0.6-0.7 petagrams of carbon per year). Although forest expansion following agricultural abandonment is certainly responsible for an important fraction of this carbon sink activity, the additional effects on the carbon balance of established forests of increased atmospheric carbon dioxide, increasing temperatures, changes in management practices and nitrogen deposition are difficult to disentangle, despite an extensive network of measurement stations. The relevance of this measurement effort has also been questioned, because spot measurements fail to take into account the role of disturbances, either natural (fire, pests, windstorms) or anthropogenic (forest harvesting). Here we show that the temporal dynamics following stand-replacing disturbances do indeed account for a very large fraction of the overall variability in forest carbon sequestration. After the confounding effects of disturbance have been factored out, however, forest net carbon sequestration is found to be overwhelmingly driven by nitrogen deposition, largely the result of anthropogenic activities. The effect is always positive over the range of nitrogen deposition covered by currently available data sets, casting doubts on the risk of widespread ecosystem nitrogen saturation under natural conditions. The results demonstrate that mankind is ultimately controlling the carbon balance of temperate and boreal forests, either directly (through forest management) or indirectly (through nitrogen deposition).

  6. Forest operations for ecosystem management

    Treesearch

    Robert B. Rummer; John Baumgras; Joe McNeel

    1997-01-01

    The evolution of modern forest resource management is focusing on ecologically sensitive forest operations. This shift in management strategies is producing a new set of functional requirements for forest operations. Systems to implement ecosystem management prescriptions may need to be economically viable over a wider range of piece sizes, for example. Increasing...

  7. Fire, global warming, and the carbon balance of boreal forests

    SciTech Connect

    Kasischke, E.S.; Christensen, N.L. Jr.; Stocks, B.J.

    1995-05-01

    Fire strongly influences carbon cycling and storage in boreal forests. In the near-term, if global warming occurs, the frequency and intensity of fires in boreal forests are likely to increase significantly. A sensitivity analysis on the relationship between fire and carbon storage in the living-biomass and ground-layer compartments of boreal forests was performed to determine how the carbon stocks would be expected to change as a result of global warming. A model was developed to study this sensitivity. The model shows if the annual area burned in boreal forests increases by 50%, as predicted by some studies, then the amount of carbon stored in the ground layer would decrease between 3.5 and 5.6 kg/m{sup 2}, and the amount of carbon stored in the living biomass would increase by 1.2 kg/m{sup 2}. There would be a net loss of carbon in boreal forests between 2.3 and 4.4 kg/m{sup 2}, or 27.1-51.9 Pg on a global scale. Because the carbon in the ground layer is lot more quickly than carbon is accumulated in living biomass, this could lead to a short-term release of carbon over the next 50-100 yr at a rate of 0.33-0.8 Pg/yr, dependent on the distribution of carbon between organic and mineral soil in the ground layer (which is presently not well-understood) and the increase in fire frequency caused by global warming. 57 refs., 9 figs., 2 tabs.

  8. Ecology of snowshoe hares in southern boreal and montane forests [Chapter 7

    Treesearch

    Karen E. Hodges

    2000-01-01

    Snowshoe hares occur in many of the montane and sub-boreal forests of the continental United States, as well as throughout the boreal forests of Canada and Alaska. Population dynamics in their southern range were previously thought to be noncyclic, in contrast to the strong 10-year fluctuation that typifies boreal populations of snowshoe hares. Time series data and...

  9. Regional-scale surface flux observations across the boreal forest during BOREAS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oncley, Steven P.; Lenschow, Donald H.; Campos, Teresa L.; Davis, Kenneth J.; Mann, Jakob

    1997-12-01

    A major role of the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) Electra aircraft during the Boreal Ecosystem-Atmosphere Study (BOREAS) was to measure fluxes of momentum, sensible and latent heat, carbon dioxide, and ozone on a transect that crossed the entire boreal forest biome. The observations spanned the growing season (late May to mid-September 1994) and extended the fluxes obtained in two intensive study areas to larger spatial scales to help provide a data set that is useful for comparison with and validation of large-scale models and satellite retrievals. We found the deciduous forests to be more photosynthetically active than nearby coniferous forests. Coniferous forest fluxes across the transect from the BOREAS southern to northern study areas show no apparent spatial trend, though smaller-scale variability is large. The fluxes make a smooth transition from the BOREAS northern study area to the subarctic tundra. Typical midsummer, midday, large-scale net ecosystem exchanges of carbon dioxide were about -10 μmol m-2 s-1 for primarily deciduous forests, about -6 μmol m-2 s-1 for the primarily coniferous regions between and including the two BOREAS study areas, and about -2 μmol m-2 s-1 for the subarctic tundra. The first two values are similar to those observed by flux towers in the region. Throughout the boreal forest the fluxes are influenced by the presence of lakes. Lake fraction is found to be a dominant source of variability in the fluxes observed along the transect. Lakes are also found to be large sinks of available radiant energy. Regional ground storage of heat is estimated to be about 30% of the net radiation over the forest, and 40% over the subarctic tundra, largely due to the presence of lakes.

  10. The impact of boreal forest fire on climate warming

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Randerson, J.T.; Liu, H.; Flanner, M.G.; Chambers, S.D.; Jin, Y.; Hess, P.G.; Pfister, G.; Mack, M.C.; Treseder, K.K.; Welp, L.R.; Chapin, F.S.; Harden, J.W.; Goulden, M.L.; Lyons, E.; Neff, J.C.; Schuur, E.A.G.; Zender, C.S.

    2006-01-01

    We report measurements and analysis of a boreal forest fire, integrating the effects of greenhouse gases, aerosols, black carbon deposition on snow and sea ice, and postfire changes in surface albedo. The net effect of all agents was to increase radiative forcing during the first year (34 ?? 31 Watts per square meter of burned area), but to decrease radiative forcing when averaged over an 80-year fire cycle (-2.3 ?? 2.2 Watts per square meter) because multidecadal increases in surface albedo had a larger impact than fire-emitted greenhouse gases. This result implies that future increases in boreal fire may not accelerate climate warming.

  11. The Boreal Ecosystem Research and Monitoring Sites (BERMS): A Canadian Contribution to CEOP

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barr, A. G.; Goodison, B.; Crawford, B.

    2004-05-01

    The Boreal Ecosystem Research and Monitoring Sites (BERMS) program is providing the Canadian contribution to the WCRP Coordinated Enhanced Observing Period (CEOP) initiative of the Global Energy and Water Experiment. The BERMS super-site, which is located at the southern edge of the boreal forest in central Saskatchewan Canada, currently operates ten flux towers in a variety of ecosystems in a study area of 120 x 100 km. These sites were originally established to study the energy, water and carbon cycles of the Canadian boreal forest in relation to inter-annual climate variability for different ecosystems. The area has also been used as a super-site for developing and validating remotely-sensed information and products, especially for snow cover. It was the site of a major validation effort for snow-water equivalent determination for AMSR-E. The sites are the flagship sites in Canada for studying the energy, water and carbon cycles in a cold-climate region and are well suited to the CEOP investigation. Five of the tower flux sites were first established in 1993-4 as part of the Boreal Ecosystem-Atmosphere Study (BOREAS) and have continued since 1997 as part of the BERMS program. Five additional sites have been recently established in young forest stands following disturbance by fire and harvest, with particular focus on the carbon cycle. The data from the three mature, long-term sites in Aspen, Black Spruce and Jack Pine have been submitted to CEOP. The BERMS program has served as a model for the Canadian field flux program of network-wide standardization in instrumentation and data post-processing, data management, and government-university collaboration. The modern, automated data management system has allowed provision of data for CEOP studies in a timely manner and within the CEOP data policy and guidelines. This presentation will provide an overview of the BERMS program and related remote sensing studies as they relate to CEOP, with particular focus on data

  12. Boreal forests and atmosphere - Biosphere exchange of carbon dioxide

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    D'Arrigo, Rosanne; Jacoby, Gordon C.; Fung, Inez Y.

    1987-01-01

    Two approaches to investigating the role of boreal forests in the global carbon cycle are presented. First, a tracer support model which incorporates the normalized-difference vegetation index obtained from advanced, very high resolution radiometer radiances was used to simulate the annual cycle of CO2 in the atmosphere. Results indicate that the seasonal growth of the combined boreal forests of North America and Eurasia accounts for about 50 percent of the mean seasonal CO2 amplitude recorded at Pt. Barrow, Alaska and about 30 percent of the more globally representative CO2 signal at Mauna Loa, Hawaii. Second, tree-ring width data from four boreal treeline sites in northern Canada were positively correlated with Pt. Barrow CO2 drawdown for the period 1971-1982. These results suggest that large-scale changes in the growth of boreal forests may be contributing to the observed increasing trend in CO2 amplitude. They further suggest that tree-ring data may be applicable as indices for CO2 uptake and remote sensing estimates of photosynthetic activity.

  13. Boreal forests and atmosphere - Biosphere exchange of carbon dioxide

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    D'Arrigo, Rosanne; Jacoby, Gordon C.; Fung, Inez Y.

    1987-01-01

    Two approaches to investigating the role of boreal forests in the global carbon cycle are presented. First, a tracer support model which incorporates the normalized-difference vegetation index obtained from advanced, very high resolution radiometer radiances was used to simulate the annual cycle of CO2 in the atmosphere. Results indicate that the seasonal growth of the combined boreal forests of North America and Eurasia accounts for about 50 percent of the mean seasonal CO2 amplitude recorded at Pt. Barrow, Alaska and about 30 percent of the more globally representative CO2 signal at Mauna Loa, Hawaii. Second, tree-ring width data from four boreal treeline sites in northern Canada were positively correlated with Pt. Barrow CO2 drawdown for the period 1971-1982. These results suggest that large-scale changes in the growth of boreal forests may be contributing to the observed increasing trend in CO2 amplitude. They further suggest that tree-ring data may be applicable as indices for CO2 uptake and remote sensing estimates of photosynthetic activity.

  14. Soil carbon stocks and their rates of accumulation and loss in a boreal forest landscape

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rapalee, G.; Trumbore, S.E.; Davidson, E.A.; Harden, J.W.; Veldhuis, H.

    1998-01-01

    Boreal forests and wetlands are thought to be significant carbon sinks, and they could become net C sources as the Earth warms. Most of the C of boreal forest ecosystems is stored in the moss layer and in the soil. The objective of this study was to estimate soil C stocks (including moss layers) and rates of accumulation and loss for a 733 km2 area of the BOReal Ecosystem-Atmosphere Study site in northern Manitoba, using data from smaller-scale intensive field studies. A simple process-based model developed from measurements of soil C inventories and radiocarbon was used to relate soil C storage and dynamics to soil drainage and forest stand age. Soil C stocks covary with soil drainage class, with the largest C stocks occurring in poorly drained sites. Estimated rates of soil C accumulation or loss are sensitive to the estimated decomposition constants for the large pool of deep soil C, and improved understanding of deep soil C decomposition is needed. While the upper moss layers regrow and accumulate C after fires, the deep C dynamics vary across the landscape, from a small net sink to a significant source. Estimated net soil C accumulation, averaged for the entire 733 km2 area, was 20 g C m-2 yr-1 (28 g C m-2 yr-1 accumulation in surface mosses offset by 8 g C m-2 yr-1 lost from deep C pools) in a year with no fire. Most of the C accumulated in poorly and very poorly drained soils (peatlands and wetlands). Burning of the moss layer in only 1% of uplands would offset the C stored in the remaining 99% of the area. Significant interannual variability in C storage is expected because of the irregular occurrence of fire in space and time. The effects of climate change and management on fire frequency and on decomposition of immense deep soil C stocks are key to understanding future C budgets in boreal forests.

  15. Regional drought-induced reduction in the biomass carbon sink of Canada's boreal forests

    PubMed Central

    Ma, Zhihai; Peng, Changhui; Zhu, Qiuan; Chen, Huai; Yu, Guirui; Li, Weizhong; Zhou, Xiaolu; Wang, Weifeng; Zhang, Wenhua

    2012-01-01

    The boreal forests, identified as a critical “tipping element” of the Earth's climate system, play a critical role in the global carbon budget. Recent findings have suggested that terrestrial carbon sinks in northern high-latitude regions are weakening, but there has been little observational evidence to support the idea of a reduction of carbon sinks in northern terrestrial ecosystems. Here, we estimated changes in the biomass carbon sink of natural stands throughout Canada's boreal forests using data from long-term forest permanent sampling plots. We found that in recent decades, the rate of biomass change decreased significantly in western Canada (Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba), but there was no significant trend for eastern Canada (Ontario and Quebec). Our results revealed that recent climate change, and especially drought-induced water stress, is the dominant cause of the observed reduction in the biomass carbon sink, suggesting that western Canada's boreal forests may become net carbon sources if the climate change–induced droughts continue to intensify. PMID:22308340

  16. Regional drought-induced reduction in the biomass carbon sink of Canada's boreal forests.

    PubMed

    Ma, Zhihai; Peng, Changhui; Zhu, Qiuan; Chen, Huai; Yu, Guirui; Li, Weizhong; Zhou, Xiaolu; Wang, Weifeng; Zhang, Wenhua

    2012-02-14

    The boreal forests, identified as a critical "tipping element" of the Earth's climate system, play a critical role in the global carbon budget. Recent findings have suggested that terrestrial carbon sinks in northern high-latitude regions are weakening, but there has been little observational evidence to support the idea of a reduction of carbon sinks in northern terrestrial ecosystems. Here, we estimated changes in the biomass carbon sink of natural stands throughout Canada's boreal forests using data from long-term forest permanent sampling plots. We found that in recent decades, the rate of biomass change decreased significantly in western Canada (Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba), but there was no significant trend for eastern Canada (Ontario and Quebec). Our results revealed that recent climate change, and especially drought-induced water stress, is the dominant cause of the observed reduction in the biomass carbon sink, suggesting that western Canada's boreal forests may become net carbon sources if the climate change-induced droughts continue to intensify.

  17. Global Boreal Forest Mapping with JERS-1: North America

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Williams, Cynthia L.; McDonald, Kyle; Chapman, Bruce

    2000-01-01

    Collaborative effort is underway to map boreal forests worldwide using L-band, single polarization Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) imagery from the Japanese Earth Resources (JERS-1) satellite. Final products of the North American Boreal Forest Mapping Project will include two continental scale radar mosaics and supplementary multitemporal mosaics for Alaska, central Canada, and eastern Canada. For selected sites, we are also producing local scale (100 km x 100 km) and regional scale maps (1000 km x 1000 km). As with the nearly completed Amazon component of the Global Rain Forest Mapping project, SAR imagery, radar image mosaics and SAR-derived texture image products will be available to the scientific community on the World Wide Web. Image acquisition for this project has been completed and processing and image interpretation is underway at the Alaska SAR Facility.

  18. Palaeodata-informed modelling of large carbon losses from recent burning of boreal forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kelly, Ryan; Genet, Hélène; McGuire, A. David; Hu, Feng Sheng

    2016-01-01

    Wildfires play a key role in the boreal forest carbon cycle, and models suggest that accelerated burning will increase boreal C emissions in the coming century. However, these predictions may be compromised because brief observational records provide limited constraints to model initial conditions. We confronted this limitation by using palaeoenvironmental data to drive simulations of long-term C dynamics in the Alaskan boreal forest. Results show that fire was the dominant control on C cycling over the past millennium, with changes in fire frequency accounting for 84% of C stock variability. A recent rise in fire frequency inferred from the palaeorecord led to simulated C losses of 1.4 kg C m-2 (12% of ecosystem C stocks) from 1950 to 2006. In stark contrast, a small net C sink of 0.3 kg C m-2 occurred if the past fire regime was assumed to be similar to the modern regime, as is common in models of C dynamics. Although boreal fire regimes are heterogeneous, recent trends and future projections point to increasing fire activity in response to climate warming throughout the biome. Thus, predictions that terrestrial C sinks of northern high latitudes will mitigate rising atmospheric CO2 may be over-optimistic.

  19. Palaeodata-informed modelling of large carbon losses from recent burning of boreal forests

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kelly, Ryan; Genet, Helene; McGuire, Anthony; Hu, Feng Sheng

    2016-01-01

    Wildfires play a key role in the boreal forest carbon cycle1, 2, and models suggest that accelerated burning will increase boreal C emissions in the coming century3. However, these predictions may be compromised because brief observational records provide limited constraints to model initial conditions4. We confronted this limitation by using palaeoenvironmental data to drive simulations of long-term C dynamics in the Alaskan boreal forest. Results show that fire was the dominant control on C cycling over the past millennium, with changes in fire frequency accounting for 84% of C stock variability. A recent rise in fire frequency inferred from the palaeorecord5 led to simulated C losses of 1.4 kg C m−2 (12% of ecosystem C stocks) from 1950 to 2006. In stark contrast, a small net C sink of 0.3 kg C m−2 occurred if the past fire regime was assumed to be similar to the modern regime, as is common in models of C dynamics. Although boreal fire regimes are heterogeneous, recent trends6 and future projections7 point to increasing fire activity in response to climate warming throughout the biome. Thus, predictions8 that terrestrial C sinks of northern high latitudes will mitigate rising atmospheric CO2 may be over-optimistic.

  20. Challenges in Modeling Disturbance Regimes and Their Impacts in Arctic and Boreal Ecosystems (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McGuire, A. D.; Rupp, T. S.; Kurz, W.

    2013-12-01

    Disturbances in arctic and boreal terrestrial ecosystems influence services provided by these ecosystems to society. In particular, changes in disturbance regimes in northern latitudes have uncertain consequences for the climate system. A major challenge for the scientific community is to develop the capability to predict how the frequency, severity and resultant impacts of disturbance regimes will change in response to future changes in climate projected for northern high latitudes. Here we compare what is known about drivers and impacts of wildfire, phytophagous insect pests, and thermokarst disturbance to illustrate the complexities in predicting future changes in disturbance regimes and their impacts in arctic and boreal regions. Much of the research on predicting fire has relied on the use of drivers related to fire weather. However, changes in vegetation, such as increases in broadleaf species, associated with intensified fire regimes have the potential to influence future fire regimes through negative feedbacks associated with reduced flammability. Phytophagous insect outbreaks have affected substantial portions of the boreal region in the past, but frequently the range of the tree host is larger than the range of the insect. There is evidence that a number of insect species are expanding their range in response to climate change. Major challenges to predicting outbreaks of phytophagous insects include modeling the effects of climate change on insect growth and maturation, winter mortality, plant host health, the synchrony of insect life stages and plant host phenology, and changes in the ranges of insect pests. Moreover, Earth System Models often simplify the representation of vegetation characteristics, e.g. the use of plant functional types, providing insufficient detail to link to insect population models. Thermokarst disturbance occurs when the thawing of ice-rich permafrost results in substantial ground subsidence. In the boreal forest, thermokarst can

  1. Fungal Community Shifts in Structure and Function across a Boreal Forest Fire Chronosequence.

    PubMed

    Sun, Hui; Santalahti, Minna; Pumpanen, Jukka; Köster, Kajar; Berninger, Frank; Raffaello, Tommaso; Jumpponen, Ari; Asiegbu, Fred O; Heinonsalo, Jussi

    2015-11-01

    Forest fires are a common natural disturbance in forested ecosystems and have a large impact on the microbial communities in forest soils. The response of soil fungal communities to forest fire is poorly documented. Here, we investigated fungal community structure and function across a 152-year boreal forest fire chronosequence using high-throughput sequencing of the internal transcribed spacer 2 (ITS2) region and a functional gene array (GeoChip). Our results demonstrate that the boreal forest soil fungal community was most diverse soon after a fire disturbance and declined over time. The differences in the fungal communities were explained by changes in the abundance of basidiomycetes and ascomycetes. Ectomycorrhizal (ECM) fungi contributed to the increase in basidiomycete abundance over time, with the operational taxonomic units (OTUs) representing the genera Cortinarius and Piloderma dominating in abundance. Hierarchical cluster analysis by using gene signal intensity revealed that the sites with different fire histories formed separate clusters, suggesting differences in the potential to maintain essential biogeochemical soil processes. The site with the greatest biological diversity had also the most diverse genes. The genes involved in organic matter degradation in the mature forest, in which ECM fungi were the most abundant, were as common in the youngest site, in which saprotrophic fungi had a relatively higher abundance. This study provides insight into the impact of fire disturbance on soil fungal community dynamics.

  2. Fungal Community Shifts in Structure and Function across a Boreal Forest Fire Chronosequence

    PubMed Central

    Santalahti, Minna; Pumpanen, Jukka; Köster, Kajar; Berninger, Frank; Raffaello, Tommaso; Jumpponen, Ari; Asiegbu, Fred O.; Heinonsalo, Jussi

    2015-01-01

    Forest fires are a common natural disturbance in forested ecosystems and have a large impact on the microbial communities in forest soils. The response of soil fungal communities to forest fire is poorly documented. Here, we investigated fungal community structure and function across a 152-year boreal forest fire chronosequence using high-throughput sequencing of the internal transcribed spacer 2 (ITS2) region and a functional gene array (GeoChip). Our results demonstrate that the boreal forest soil fungal community was most diverse soon after a fire disturbance and declined over time. The differences in the fungal communities were explained by changes in the abundance of basidiomycetes and ascomycetes. Ectomycorrhizal (ECM) fungi contributed to the increase in basidiomycete abundance over time, with the operational taxonomic units (OTUs) representing the genera Cortinarius and Piloderma dominating in abundance. Hierarchical cluster analysis by using gene signal intensity revealed that the sites with different fire histories formed separate clusters, suggesting differences in the potential to maintain essential biogeochemical soil processes. The site with the greatest biological diversity had also the most diverse genes. The genes involved in organic matter degradation in the mature forest, in which ECM fungi were the most abundant, were as common in the youngest site, in which saprotrophic fungi had a relatively higher abundance. This study provides insight into the impact of fire disturbance on soil fungal community dynamics. PMID:26341215

  3. Forest harvest contribution to Boreal freshwater methyl mercury load

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kronberg, Rose-Marie; Drott, Andreas; Jiskra, Martin; Wiederhold, Jan G.; Björn, Erik; Skyllberg, Ulf

    2016-06-01

    Effects of Boreal forest harvest on mercury (Hg) and methyl mercury (MeHg) soil pools and export by stream runoff were quantified by comparing 10 reference watersheds (REFs) covered by >80 year old Norway spruce (Picea abies Karst.) forests with 10 similar watersheds subjected to clear-cutting (CCs). While total Hg soil storage did not change, MeHg pools increased seven times (p = 0.006) in the organic topsoil 2 years after clear-cutting. In undulating terrain, situated above the postglacial marine limit (ML) of the ancient Baltic Sea, the mass ratio between flux-weighted MeHg and dissolved organic carbon (MeHg/DOC) in stream runoff increased 1.8 times (p < 0.004) as a consequence of forest harvest. When recalculated to 100% clear-cutting of the watershed, the annual MeHg stream export increased 3.8 times (p = 0.047). Below the ML, where the terrain was flatter, neither the MeHg/DOC ratio nor the annual export of MeHg differed between REFs and CCs, likely because of the larger contribution of MeHg exported from peaty soils and small wetlands. The most robust measure, MeHg/DOC, was used to calculate MeHg loadings to Boreal headwaters. If the forest harvest effect lasts 10 years, clear-cutting increases MeHg runoff by 12-20% in Sweden and 2% in the Boreal zone as a whole. In Sweden, having intensely managed forests, 37% and 56% of MeHg are exported from peatlands and forest soils, respectively, and forest clear-cutting is adding another 6.6%. In the Boreal zone as a whole peatlands and forests soils contribute with 53% and 46%, respectively, and clear-cutting is estimated to add another 1.0%. An expected rapid increase in Boreal forest harvest and disturbance urge for inclusion of land use effects in mercury biogeochemical cycling models at different scales.

  4. Controls on winter ecosystem respiration in temperate and boreal ecosystems

    Treesearch

    T. Wang; P. Ciais; S.L. Piao; C. Ottle; P. Brender; F. Maignan; A. Arain; A. Cescatti; D. Gianelle; C. Gough; L Gu; P. Lafleur; T. Laurila; B. Marcolla; H. Margolis; L. Montagnani; E. Moors; N. Saigusa; T. Vesala; G. Wohlfahrt; C. Koven; A. Black; E. Dellwik; A. Don; D. Hollinger; A. Knohl; R. Monson; J. Munger; A. Suyker; A. Varlagin; S. Verma

    2011-01-01

    Winter CO2 fluxes represent an important component of the annual carbon budget in northern ecosystems. Understanding winter respiration processes and their responses to climate change is also central to our ability to assess terrestrial carbon cycle and climate feedbacks in the future. However, the factors influencing the spatial and temporal...

  5. Simulating the effects of fire disturbance and vegetation recovery on boreal ecosystem carbon fluxes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yi, Y.; Kimball, J. S.; Jones, L. A.; Zhao, M.

    2011-12-01

    Fire related disturbance and subsequent vegetation recovery has a major influence on carbon storage and land-atmosphere CO2 fluxes in boreal ecosystems. We applied a synthetic approach combining tower eddy covariance flux measurements, satellite remote sensing and model reanalysis surface meteorology within a terrestrial carbon model framework to estimate fire disturbance and recovery effects on boreal ecosystem carbon fluxes including gross primary production (GPP), ecosystem respiration and net CO2 exchange (NEE). A disturbance index based on MODIS land surface temperature and NDVI was found to coincide with vegetation recovery status inferred from tower chronosequence sites. An empirical algorithm was developed to track ecosystem recovery status based on the disturbance index and used to nudge modeled net primary production (NPP) and surface soil organic carbon stocks from baseline steady-state conditions. The simulations were conducted using a satellite based terrestrial carbon flux model driven by MODIS NDVI and MERRA reanalysis daily surface meteorology inputs. The MODIS (MCD45) burned area product was then applied for mapping recent (post 2000) regional disturbance history, and used with the disturbance index to define vegetation disturbance and recovery status. The model was then applied to estimate regional patterns and temporal changes in terrestrial carbon fluxes across the entire northern boreal forest and tundra domain. A sensitivity analysis was conducted to assess the relative importance of fire disturbance and recovery on regional carbon fluxes relative to assumed steady-state conditions. The explicit representation of disturbance and recovery effects produces more accurate NEE predictions than the baseline steady-state simulations and reduces uncertainty regarding the purported missing carbon sink in the high latitudes.

  6. Spatial and Temporal Variation in Feather Moss Associated Nitrogen Fixation in Coniferous and Deciduous Dominated Alaskan Boreal Forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jean, M.; Mack, M. C.; Johnstone, J. F.

    2015-12-01

    Dominant canopy tree species have strong effects on the composition and function of understory species. In boreal forests, forest floor bryophytes and their associated microbes are a primary source of ecosystem nitrogen (N) inputs, and thus an important process regulating ecosystem productivity. Bryophyte composition and abundance varies with forest composition, yet how such changes can affect ecosystem processes such as N fixation is still poorly understood. Our goal is to investigate how cyanobacteria-based N fixation occurring in the two most common feather mosses in the Alaskan boreal forest (Pleurozium schreberi and Hylocomium splendens) varies among coniferous and deciduous forest types, over the growing season, and across a nutrient availability gradient. Twelve patches of H. splendens and P. schreberi were identified in three pairs (blocks) of adjacent stands of paper birch (Betula neoalaskana) and black spruce (Picea mariana) near Fairbanks, interior Alaska. Sampling occurred in one block in June, July, August, and September 2014, and in the three blocks once in August 2014. Moss leaf area, moisture and weight, as well as environmental variables such as air temperature and canopy cover were recorded. Fixation rates were consistently higher for P. schreberi than for H. splendens. Overall, N fixation rates were lower in birch than in spruce stands and peaked in August, or July for P. schreberi in birch stands. Moreover, fixation rates varied along the nutrient availability gradient, with fixation rates higher where nutrient availability was lower. This difference was especially clear in spruce stands. Our preliminary results suggest that moss species, canopy type, and environmental factors all influence N fixation rates in Alaskan boreal forests. Our results will enhance the knowledge of the processes that drive N fixation in boreal forests, which is important for predicting ecosystem consequences of changing forest composition.

  7. Modelling the Influence of Ectomycorrhizal Decomposition on Plant Nutrition and Carbon Sequestartion in Boreal Forst Ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baskaran, P.; Hyvönen, R.; Agren, G. I.; Clemmensen, K.; Lindahl, B.; Manzoni, S.

    2016-12-01

    Tree growth in boreal forests is limited by nitrogen availability (N). Most boreal forest trees form symbiotic association with ectomycorrhizal (ECM) fungi, that improve uptake of inorganic N and also have the capacity to decompose soil organic matter and to mobilize organic N (`ECM decomposition'). To mechanistically understand the effect of `ECM decomposition' on ecosystem C and N balances, we formulated a model of C and N flows to and from plants, SOM, saprotrophs, ECM fungi, and inorganic N stores. Our predictions indicate that the optimal C allocation to ECM fungi, above which the symbiosis switches from mutualism to parasitism, depends strongly on the partitioning of soil organic matter decomposition between ECM fungi and saprotrophs. At high relative ECM decomposition and low N availability, optimal C allocation was estimated to 15% of NPP. The model also predicts a negative correlation between plant production and soil C sequestration, as increased plant belowground C allocation increases ECM mining of organic N which promotes tree growth but decreases soil C storage. In conclusion, our model provides a tool for studying ecosystem productivity and C storage, where ECM decomposition acts as a potential driver of both decomposition of soil organic matter and plant N uptake.

  8. Molybdenum and phosphorus limitation of moss-associated nitrogen fixation in boreal ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Rousk, Kathrin; Degboe, Jefferson; Michelsen, Anders; Bradley, Robert; Bellenger, Jean-Philippe

    2017-04-01

    Biological nitrogen fixation (BNF) performed by moss-associated cyanobacteria is one of the main sources of new nitrogen (N) input in pristine, high-latitude ecosystems. Yet, the nutrients that limit BNF remain elusive. Here, we tested whether this important ecosystem function is limited by the availability of molybdenum (Mo), phosphorus (P), or both. BNF in dominant mosses was measured with the acetylene reduction assay (ARA) at different time intervals following Mo and P additions, in both laboratory microcosms with mosses from a boreal spruce forest and field plots in subarctic tundra. We further used a (15) N2 tracer technique to assess the ARA to N2 fixation conversion ratios at our subarctic site. BNF was up to four-fold higher shortly after the addition of Mo, in both the laboratory and field experiments. A similar positive response to Mo was found in moss colonizing cyanobacterial biomass. As the growing season progressed, nitrogenase activity became progressively more P limited. The ARA : (15) N2 ratios increased with increasing Mo additions. These findings show that N2 fixation activity as well as cyanobacterial biomass in dominant feather mosses from boreal forests and subarctic tundra are limited by Mo availability.

  9. Aboveground Biomass Monitoring over Siberian Boreal Forest Using Radar Remote Sensing Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stelmaszczuk-Gorska, M. A.; Thiel, C. J.; Schmullius, C.

    2014-12-01

    Aboveground biomass (AGB) plays an essential role in ecosystem research, global cycles, and is of vital importance in climate studies. AGB accumulated in the forests is of special monitoring interest as it contains the most of biomass comparing with other land biomes. The largest of the land biomes is boreal forest, which has a substantial carbon accumulation capability; carbon stock estimated to be 272 +/-23 Pg C (32%) [1]. Russian's forests are of particular concern, due to the largest source of uncertainty in global carbon stock calculations [1], and old inventory data that have not been updated in the last 25 years [2]. In this research new empirical models for AGB estimation are proposed. Using radar L-band data for AGB retrieval and optical data for an update of in situ data the processing scheme was developed. The approach was trained and validated in the Asian part of the boreal forest, in southern Russian Central Siberia; two Siberian Federal Districts: Krasnoyarsk Kray and Irkutsk Oblast. Together the training and testing forest territories cover an area of approximately 3,500 km2. ALOS PALSAR L-band single (HH - horizontal transmitted and received) and dual (HH and HV - horizontal transmitted, horizontal and vertical received) polarizations in Single Look Complex format (SLC) were used to calculate backscattering coefficient in gamma nought and coherence. In total more than 150 images acquired between 2006 and 2011 were available. The data were obtained through the ALOS Kyoto and Carbon Initiative Project (K&C). The data were used to calibrate a randomForest algorithm. Additionally, a simple linear and multiple-regression approach was used. The uncertainty of the AGB estimation at pixel and stand level were calculated approximately as 35% by validation against an independent dataset. The previous studies employing ALOS PALSAR data over boreal forests reported uncertainty of 39.4% using randomForest approach [2] or 42.8% using semi-empirical approach [3].

  10. Climate and wildfires in the North American boreal forest.

    PubMed

    Macias Fauria, Marc; Johnson, E A

    2008-07-12

    The area burned in the North American boreal forest is controlled by the frequency of mid-tropospheric blocking highs that cause rapid fuel drying. Climate controls the area burned through changing the dynamics of large-scale teleconnection patterns (Pacific Decadal Oscillation/El Niño Southern Oscillation and Arctic Oscillation, PDO/ENSO and AO) that control the frequency of blocking highs over the continent at different time scales. Changes in these teleconnections may be caused by the current global warming. Thus, an increase in temperature alone need not be associated with an increase in area burned in the North American boreal forest. Since the end of the Little Ice Age, the climate has been unusually moist and variable: large fire years have occurred in unusual years, fire frequency has decreased and fire-climate relationships have occurred at interannual to decadal time scales. Prolonged and severe droughts were common in the past and were partly associated with changes in the PDO/ENSO system. Under these conditions, large fire years become common, fire frequency increases and fire-climate relationships occur at decadal to centennial time scales. A suggested return to the drier climate regimes of the past would imply major changes in the temporal dynamics of fire-climate relationships and in area burned, a reduction in the mean age of the forest, and changes in species composition of the North American boreal forest.

  11. Ca isotope cycling in a forested ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holmden, Chris; Bélanger, Nicolas

    2010-02-01

    Reports of large Ca isotope fractionations between trees and soils prompted this study of a Boreal forest ecosystem near La Ronge, Saskatchewan, to improve understanding of this phenomenon. The results on five tree species (black spruce, trembling aspen, white spruce, jack pine, balsam poplar) confirm that nutrient Ca uptake by plants favors the light isotopes, thus driving residual Ca in plant available soil pools towards enrichment in the heavy isotopes. Substantial within-tree fraction occurs in tissues formed along the transpiration stream, with low δ 44Ca values in fine roots (2 mm), intermediate values in stemwood, and high values in foliage. Separation factors between different plant tissues are similar between species, but the initial fractionation step in the tips of the fine roots is species specific, and/or sensitive to the local soil environment. Soil water δ 44Ca values appear to increase with depth to at least 35 cm below the top of the forest floor, which is close to the deepest level of fine roots. The heavy plant fractionated signature of Ca in the finely rooted upper soils filters downward where it is retained on ion exchange sites, leached into groundwater, and discharged into surface waters. The relationship between Ca uptake by tree fine roots and the pattern of δ 44Ca enrichment with soil depth was modeled for two Ca pools: the forest floor (litter) and the underlying (upper B) mineral soil. Six study plots were investigated along two hillside toposequences trending upwards from a first order stream. We used allometric equations describing the Ca distribution in boreal tree species to calculate weighted average δ 44Ca values for the stands in each plot and estimate Ca uptake rates. The δ 44Ca value of precipitation was measured, and soil weathering signatures deduced, by acid leaching of lower B mineral soils. Steady state equations were used to derive a set of model Ca fluxes and fractionation factors for each plot. The model reproduces

  12. Changing Arctic ecosystems--the role of ecosystem changes across the Boreal-Arctic transition zone on the distribution and abundance of wildlife populations

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McNew, Lance; Handel, Colleen; Pearce, John; DeGange, Anthony R.; Holland-Bartels, Leslie; Whalen, Mary

    2013-01-01

    Arctic and boreal ecosystems provide important breeding habitat for more than half of North America’s migratory birds as well as many resident species. Northern landscapes are projected to experience more pronounced climate-related changes in habitat than most other regions. These changes include increases in shrub growth, conversion of tundra to forest, alteration of wetlands, shifts in species’ composition, and changes in the frequency and scale of fires and insect outbreaks. Changing habitat conditions, in turn, may have significant effects on the distribution and abundance of wildlife in these critical northern ecosystems. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) is conducting studies in the Boreal–Arctic transition zone of Alaska, an environment of accelerated change in this sensitive margin between Arctic tundra and boreal forest.

  13. The impact of bryophytes on the carbon stocks of northern boreal forest soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hagemann, U.; Moroni, M. T.; Shaw, C. H.; Kurz, W. A.

    2012-04-01

    Dead organic matter (DOM), organic layer, and mineral soil carbon (C) dynamics in cool and humid northern boreal forests are expected to differ from those of drier or warmer boreal forests, because processes such as paludification and woody debris (WD) burial within the organic layer by overgrowing moss are more pronounced in regions with low average temperatures, vigorous moss layers, and long fire-return intervals. However, very few studies have provided field-measured data for these mostly remote regions. Hence, C cycling models such as the Carbon Budget Model of the Canadian Forest Sector (CBM-CFS3) have rarely been validated with field data from northern boreal forest soils, resulting in large uncertainties for estimated C stocks in a large proportion of the boreal forest ecozone. We present (i) measured data on organic layer and mineral soil (0-45 cm) C stocks in 18 old-growth and disturbed high-boreal black spruce stands in Labrador, Canada; (ii) a comparison of field-measured soil C stocks with those predicted using the CBM-CFS3; and (iii) special characteristics of the DOM and soil C dynamics of northern boreal forest soils that require modifications of model parameters and structure. Measured organic layer C stocks (30.4-47.4 Mg C ha-1) were within the range reported for other boreal forests. However, mineral soil C stocks (121.5-208.1 Mg C ha-1) contributed 58-76% to total ecosystem C stocks. Mineral soil C stocks were thus considerably higher than observed in other upland boreal forests in drier or warmer regions, but similar to values reported for black spruce on poorly drained sites and peat soils. In addition, large amounts of deadwood C (4.7-18.2 Mg C ha-1) were found to be buried within the organic layer, contributing up to 31% to total organic layer C stocks. The comparison of field-measured and CBM-CFS3 modeled C stocks showed that organic layer and mineral soil DOM in Labrador black spruce stands likely decays at lower rates than assumed by CBM

  14. Summer movements, predation and habitat use of wolves in human modified boreal forests.

    PubMed

    Gurarie, Eliezer; Suutarinen, Johanna; Kojola, Ilpo; Ovaskainen, Otso

    2011-04-01

    Grey wolves (Canis lupus), formerly extirpated in Finland, have recolonized a boreal forest environment that has been significantly altered by humans, becoming a patchwork of managed forests and clearcuts crisscrossed by roads, power lines, and railways. Little is known about how the wolves utilize this impacted ecosystem, especially during the pup-rearing summer months. We tracked two wolves instrumented with GPS collars transmitting at 30-min intervals during two summers in eastern Finland, visiting all locations in the field, identifying prey items and classifying movement behaviors. We analyzed preference and avoidance of habitat types, linear elements and habitat edges, and tested the generality of our results against lower resolution summer movements of 23 other collared wolves. Wolves tended to show a strong preference for transitional woodlands (mostly harvested clearcuts) and mixed forests over coniferous forests and to use forest roads and low use linear elements to facilitate movement. The high density of primary roads in one wolf's territory led to more constrained use of the home territory compared to the wolf with fewer roads, suggesting avoidance of humans; however, there did not appear to be large differences on the hunting success or the success of pup rearing for the two packs. In total, 90 kills were identified, almost entirely moose (Alces alces) and reindeer (Rangifer tarandus sspp.) calves of which a large proportion were killed in transitional woodlands. Generally, wolves displayed a high level of adaptability, successfully exploiting direct and indirect human-derived modifications to the boreal forest environment.

  15. Large-scale variation in boreal and temperate forest carbon turnover rate related to climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thurner, Martin; Beer, Christian; Carvalhais, Nuno; Forkel, Matthias; Santoro, Maurizio; Tum, Markus; Schmullius, Christiane

    2016-05-01

    Vegetation carbon turnover processes in forest ecosystems and their dominant drivers are far from being understood at a broader scale. Many of these turnover processes act on long timescales and include a lateral dimension and thus can hardly be investigated by plot-level studies alone. Making use of remote sensing-based products of net primary production (NPP) and biomass, here we show that spatial gradients of carbon turnover rate (k) in Northern Hemisphere boreal and temperate forests are explained by different climate-related processes depending on the ecosystem. k is related to frost damage effects and the trade-off between growth and frost adaptation in boreal forests, while drought stress and climate effects on insects and pathogens can explain an elevated k in temperate forests. By identifying relevant processes underlying broadscale patterns in k, we provide the basis for a detailed exploration of these mechanisms in field studies, and ultimately the improvement of their representations in global vegetation models (GVMs).

  16. Permafrost and Forest Degradation after Wet Climate Years in Eastern Siberian Boreal Forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iijima, Y.; Abe, K.; Ise, H.; Masuzawa, T.; Fedorov, A. N.

    2014-12-01

    Unusual precipitation increase during summer through winter had continued since 2004 in the central Lena river basin, eastern Siberia. The precipitation increase led to deepening active layer (permafrost thawing near the surface) accompanying with remarkable increase in soil moisture. The perennially waterlogged conditions had exacerbated the boreal forest habitat; that is, larch trees had widely withered and died in this region. The present study clarified spatial extent of permafrost and forest degradation due to the unexpected hydro-climate-driven damages. We have attempted to extract the degraded boreal forest based on satellite image analyses, along with expansion of the perennially waterlogged surface area. We used ALOS-PALSAR and AVNIR-2 images taken from 2006 to 2009. Classification of waterlogged area was performed by PALSAR images with supervised classification based on a microwave backscattering coefficient. Then, we compared the distribution of the waterlogged area between multi-years. Additional supervised classification of boreal forest change was conducted using AVNIR-2 images. Both classifications produced the multi-years change in degraded boreal forest at the intensive observational sites in both left and right bank of Lena River near Yakutsk. In the right bank area, most of alas lakes expanded and boreal forest on the periphery of lakes turned to waterlogged surface. In the left bank area, in contrast, waterlogged surface expanded at concaved terrain and along valleys in conjunction with forest degradation. Field survey supported that humidified and deepening active layer along slope and near alas lakes correspond with the gradient of forest degradation and enhanced thermokarst activity. Both of increasing precipitation and thawing ice in permafrost might cause the degradation. In brief, the method combining ALOS satellite images has possibility to detect permafrost and forest degradation caused by wet climate in boreal forest.

  17. Winter Surface Simulations in Boreal Forests Using the Canadian Land Surface Scheme: Tests of Improved Surface Parameterizations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bartlett, P. A.; Mackay, M. D.; Verseghy, D. L.

    2004-05-01

    Boreal forest is the Earth's second largest biome, covering approximately 11 percent of the land surface. Its location, below the tree line in the zone of discontinuous permafrost, makes it especially sensitive to climatic shifts. It is also a potential source of significant feedbacks to the climate system through changes in surface albedo, snow cover, water availability and organic soil climate. Until recently, such processes in the boreal forest have not been well modelled by land surface schemes. Previous versions of the Canadian Land Surface Scheme (CLASS) were tested extensively in boreal forests, and version 3.0, completed in 2003, contains a number of improvements. Canopy conductance now varies with vegetation type, improvements to the treatment of snow processes and snow density in particular have been added, organic soils are now represented, and different surface types within a grid-cell can be represented as patches in a mosaic. The performance of CLASS version 2.7, the previous operational version, and CLASS 3.0, are evaluated using field measurements. Results are presented for off-line simulations in Canadian boreal forests from autumn through spring. The field sites, mature aspen, jack pine, and black spruce stands, are located in central Saskatchewan, and were instrumented as part of the BERMS (Boreal Ecosystem Research and Monitoring Sites) study. Exchanges of energy and water are examined, with a focus on the simulation of the snow pack and snow processes.

  18. Disturbance dynamics of forested ecosystems

    Treesearch

    John A. Stanturf

    2004-01-01

    Forested ecosystems are dynamic, subject to natural developmental processes as well as natural and anthropogenic stresses and disturbances. Degradation is a related term. for lowered productive capacity from changes to forest structure of function (FAO. 2001). Degradation is not synonymous with disturbance, however; disturbance becomes degradation when natural...

  19. Studies of microwave scattering and canopy architecture for boreal forests

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lockhart, G. Lance; Gogineni, S. P.

    1995-01-01

    This is an annual report on the project titled 'Study of Microwave Scattering and Canopy Architecture for Boreal Forests.' The objectives of our work are to study the interaction of microwave signals with vegetation components and to determine the radar's ability to provide accurate estimates of biophysical parameters such as biomass. Our research is aimed at refining the current microwave models and using these improvements to facilitate more accurate interpretations of SAR (synthetic aperture radar) imagery.

  20. High-resolution records detect human-caused changes to the boreal forest wildfire regime in interior Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gaglioti, Benjamin V.; Mann, Daniel H.; Jones, Benjamin M.; Wooller, Matthew J.; Finney, Bruce P.

    2016-01-01

    Stand-replacing wildfires are a keystone disturbance in the boreal forest, and they are becoming more common as the climate warms. Paleo-fire archives from the wildland–urban interface can quantify the prehistoric fire regime and assess how both human land-use and climate change impact ecosystem dynamics. Here, we use a combination of a sedimentary charcoal record preserved in varved lake sediments (annually layered) and fire scars in living trees to document changes in local fire return intervals (FRIs) and regional fire activity over the last 500 years. Ace Lake is within the boreal forest, located near the town of Fairbanks in interior Alaska, which was settled by gold miners in AD 1902. In the 400 years before settlement, fires occurred near the lake on average every 58 years. After settlement, fires became much more frequent (average every 18  years), and background charcoal flux rates rose to four times their preindustrial levels, indicating a region-wide increase in burning. Despite this surge in burning, the preindustrial boreal forest ecosystem and permafrost in the watershed have remained intact. Although fire suppression has reduced charcoal influx since the 1950s, an aging fuel load experiencing increasingly warm summers may pose management problems for this and other boreal sites that have similar land-use and fire histories. The large human-caused fire events that we identify can be used to test how increasingly common megafires may alter ecosystem dynamics in the future.

  1. On the relationship between boreal forest browning and tree mortality: insights from Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rogers, B. M.; Goetz, S. J.

    2015-12-01

    Long-term satellite measurements of vegetation productivity in high-latitude environments have revealed profound and widespread responses to climate warming. Although warmer and longer summers are causing the Arctic to "green", many regions of boreal forest are showing the opposite response, particularly since the mid 1990s. This "browning" phenomenon was generally unexpected at the time of discovery, is not captured by global models, and may have profound consequences for the boreal biome. A number of studies have linked satellite-based browning trends to tree productivity through tree rings. However, our understanding of the environmental controls and ecosystem consequences of browning remains remarkably limited. Here we examine to what extent browning patterns are related to a fundamental demographic process: tree mortality. We focus on a long-term inventory database in Alaska to characterize mortality events and trends from 1994 to 2014. These patterns were related to vegetation productivity indices from MODIS and the AVHRR-based GIMMS3g data set. We explore three central hypotheses: (1) mortality events are likely to be preceded by 5-10 year browning trends ("press stress"), (2) mortality events are likely to be preceded by distinct pulses of low productivity ("pulse stress"), and (3) long-term trends in mortality are related to long-term browning. Within our study region, which encompasses eastern Alaskan from the Pacific coastal mountains up through the interior, we find strong evidence for the first two hypotheses. The third is weakly supported, which may be a consequence of the episodic nature of mortality in the region. However, preliminary analyses in the southern Canadian boreal reveal a markedly stronger relationship between long-term mortality and browning. Taken together, our study suggests a robust correlation between satellite-based metrics of productivity and forest demography; one that has consequences for forest composition, carbon stocks, and

  2. Snow ablation modeling at the stand scale in a boreal jack pine forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hardy, J. P.; Davis, R. E.; Jordan, R.; Li, X.; Woodcock, C.; Ni, W.; McKenzie, J. C.

    1997-12-01

    The purpose of this study is to predict spatial distributions of snow properties important to the hydrology and the remote sensing signatures of the boreal ecosystem. This study is part of the Boreal Ecosystems Atmosphere Study (BOREAS) of central Saskatchewan and northern Manitoba. Forested environments provide unique problems for snow cover process modeling due to the complex interactions among snow, energy transfer, and trees. These problems are approached by coupling a modified snow process model with a model of radiative interactions with forest canopies. Additionally, a tree well model describes the influence of individual trees on snow distribution on the ground. The snow process and energy budget model calculates energy exchange at the snow surface, in-pack snow processes, melting and liquid water flow, heat conduction, and vapor diffusion. The surface radiation model provides input on the radiation receipt at the snow surface for model runs in the jack pine forest. Field data consisted of measured meteorological parameters above and within the canopy, spatial variability of snow properties, and variations of incoming solar irradiance beneath the forest canopy. Results show that the area beneath tree canopies accumulated 60% of the snow accumulated in forest openings. Peak solar irradiance on the snow cover was less than one half that measured above the canopy. Model runs are compared between the open and the forested sites and show the open area ablating four days before areas beneath the canopy and eight days before forest openings and compare favorably with measured data. Physically based modeling of snow ablation was successful at the forested site and nearby open area.

  3. Carbon dioxide flux within and above a boreal aspen forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Paul Chenggang

    Carbon dioxide, water vapour, sensible heat and momentum fluxes were continuously measured using the eddy covariance technique above and below the overstory in a 70-year old aspen stand in northern Saskatchewan from October to November 1993 and from February to September 1994, and above the overstory from April to December 1996 as a part of the Boreal Ecosystem-Atmosphere Study (BOREAS). The air within the forest was usually stably stratified at night and unstable during the daytime. The relationships of the variances of the vertical velocity and scalars (air temperature, CO2 concentration and specific humidity) to the stability parameter above the forest followed the Monin-Obukhov similarity (MOS) relationships, while the applicability of MOS theory in the trunk space was poor. The rate of change in CO2 storage in the air column (Δ Sa/Δt) beneath the above-canopy eddy covariance system could be well estimated with concentrations measured at one height above the form and at one height (2.3 m) in the trunk space. Within the hunk space, eddy covariance sensible and latent heat flux measurements at one position were representative of an area extending for at least two tree heights. The same was the case for CO2 flux and during the daytime. At night, however, they exhibited significant horizontal variability but were representative of the above area when averaged over several days. Evidence supporting the hypothesis that the low nighttime CO2 fluxes resulted from the short-term changes in CO2 storage in the air-filled pores of soil/snow was presented. The rate of change of this storage (ΔSa/Δt) was estimated as ΔSs/Δt = (1 - M)Rsha where Rsha (forest respiration) is a function of soil temperature and M is a function of the friction velocity. Photosynthetic rates (P) were modelled as a product of P1, P2 and P3. P1 is a rectangular hyperbolic function of the absorbed photosynthetic photon flux density (PPFD), and P2 and P3 are second order polynomial functions of

  4. The effect of fire intensity on soil respiration in Siberia boreal forest

    Treesearch

    S. Baker; A. V. Bogorodskaya

    2010-01-01

    Russian boreal forests have an annual wildfire activity averaging 10 to 20 million ha, which has increased in recent years. This wildfire activity, in response to changing climate has the potential to significantly affect the carbon storage capacity of Siberian forests. A better understanding of the effect of fire on soil respiration rates in the boreal forest of...

  5. Plant hydraulic strategies and their variability at high latitudes: insights from a southern Canadian boreal forest site

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pappas, C.; Matheny, A. M.; Maillet, J.; Baltzer, J. L.; Stephens, J.; Barr, A.; Black, T. A.; Sonnentag, O.

    2016-12-01

    Boreal forests cover about one third of the world's forested area with a large part of the boreal zone located in Canada. These high-latitude ecosystems respond rapidly to environmental changes. Plant water stress and the resulting drought-induced mortality has been recently hypothesised as a major driver of forest changes in western Canada. Although boreal forests often exhibit low floristic complexity, local scale abiotic heterogeneities may lead to highly variable plant functional traits and thus to diverging plant responses to environmental changes. However, detailed measurements of plant hydraulic strategies and their inter- and intra-specific variability are still lacking for these ecosystems. Here, we quantify plant water use and hydraulic strategies of black spruce (Picea mariana) and larch (Larix laricina), that are widespread in the boreal zone, at a long-term monitoring site located in central Saskatchewan (53.99° N, 105.12° W; elevation 628.94 m a.s.l.). The site is characterized by a mature black spruce overstorey that dominates the landscape with few larch individuals. The ground cover consists mainly of mosses with some peat moss and lichens over a rich soil organic layer. Tree-level sap flux density, measured with Granier-style thermal dissipation probes (N=39), and concurrently recorded radial stem dynamics, measured with high frequency dendrometers (N=13), are used to quantify plant hydraulic functioning during the 2016 growing season. Hydrometeorological measurements, including soil moisture and micrometeorological data, are used to describe environmental constraints in plant water use. Tree-level dynamics are then integrated to the landscape and compared with ecosystem-level evapotranspiration measurements from an adjacent eddy-covariance flux tower. This experimental design allows us to quantify the main environmental drivers that shape plant hydraulic strategies in this southern boreal zone and to provide new insights into the inter- and

  6. Radar modeling of a boreal forest

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chauhan, Narinder S.; Lang, Roger H.; Ranson, K. J.

    1991-01-01

    Microwave modeling, ground truth, and SAR data are used to investigate the characteristics of forest stands. A mixed coniferous forest stand has been modeled at P, L, and C bands. Extensive measurements of ground truth and canopy geometry parameters were performed in a 200-m-square hemlock-dominated forest plot. About 10 percent of the trees were sampled to determine a distribution of diameter at breast height (DBH). Hemlock trees in the forest are modeled by characterizing tree trunks, branches, and needles as randomly oriented lossy dielectric cylinders whose area and orientation distributions are prescribed. The distorted Born approximation is used to compute the backscatter at P, L, and C bands. The theoretical results are found to be lower than the calibrated ground-truth data. The experiment and model results agree quite closely, however, when the ratios of VV to HH and HV to HH are compared.

  7. Radar modeling of a boreal forest

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chauhan, Narinder S.; Lang, Roger H.; Ranson, K. J.

    1991-01-01

    Microwave modeling, ground truth, and SAR data are used to investigate the characteristics of forest stands. A mixed coniferous forest stand has been modeled at P, L, and C bands. Extensive measurements of ground truth and canopy geometry parameters were performed in a 200-m-square hemlock-dominated forest plot. About 10 percent of the trees were sampled to determine a distribution of diameter at breast height (DBH). Hemlock trees in the forest are modeled by characterizing tree trunks, branches, and needles as randomly oriented lossy dielectric cylinders whose area and orientation distributions are prescribed. The distorted Born approximation is used to compute the backscatter at P, L, and C bands. The theoretical results are found to be lower than the calibrated ground-truth data. The experiment and model results agree quite closely, however, when the ratios of VV to HH and HV to HH are compared.

  8. High upward fluxes of formic acid from a boreal forest canopy

    SciTech Connect

    Schobesberger, Siegfried; Lopez-Hilfiker, Felipe D.; Taipale, Ditte; Millet, Dylan B.; D'Ambro, Emma L.; Rantala, Pekka; Mammarella, Ivan; Zhou, Putian; Wolfe, Glenn M.; Lee, Ben H.; Boy, Michael; Thornton, Joel A.

    2016-08-14

    Eddy covariance fluxes of formic acid, HCOOH, were measured over a boreal forest canopy in spring/summer 2014. The HCOOH fluxes were bidirectional but mostly upward during daytime, in contrast to studies elsewhere that reported mostly downward fluxes. Downward flux episodes were explained well by modeled dry deposition rates. The sum of net observed flux and modeled dry deposition yields an upward “gross flux” of HCOOH, which could not be quantitatively explained by literature estimates of direct vegetative/soil emissions nor by efficient chemical production from other volatile organic compounds, suggesting missing or greatly underestimated HCOOH sources in the boreal ecosystem. Here, we implemented a vegetative HCOOH source into the GEOS-Chem chemical transport model to match our derived gross flux and evaluated the updated model against airborne and spaceborne observations. Model biases in the boundary layer were substantially reduced based on this revised treatment, but biases in the free troposphere remain unexplained.

  9. High upward fluxes of formic acid from a boreal forest canopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schobesberger, Siegfried; Lopez-Hilfiker, Felipe D.; Taipale, Ditte; Millet, Dylan B.; D'Ambro, Emma L.; Rantala, Pekka; Mammarella, Ivan; Zhou, Putian; Wolfe, Glenn M.; Lee, Ben H.; Boy, Michael; Thornton, Joel A.

    2016-09-01

    Eddy covariance fluxes of formic acid, HCOOH, were measured over a boreal forest canopy in spring/summer 2014. The HCOOH fluxes were bidirectional but mostly upward during daytime, in contrast to studies elsewhere that reported mostly downward fluxes. Downward flux episodes were explained well by modeled dry deposition rates. The sum of net observed flux and modeled dry deposition yields an upward "gross flux" of HCOOH, which could not be quantitatively explained by literature estimates of direct vegetative/soil emissions nor by efficient chemical production from other volatile organic compounds, suggesting missing or greatly underestimated HCOOH sources in the boreal ecosystem. We implemented a vegetative HCOOH source into the GEOS-Chem chemical transport model to match our derived gross flux and evaluated the updated model against airborne and spaceborne observations. Model biases in the boundary layer were substantially reduced based on this revised treatment, but biases in the free troposphere remain unexplained.

  10. Using three decades of Landsat data to characterize changes and vulnerability of temperate and boreal forest phenology to climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Melaas, E. K.; Sulla-menashe, D. J.; Gray, J. M.; Friedl, M. A.

    2015-12-01

    Climate change is creating well-documented impacts on terrestrial ecosystems. Among the best known of these impacts are changes to the growing season of temperate and boreal forests. Changes in phenology provide useful diagnostics of climate change impacts in these biomes, influence coupled biosphere-atmosphere interactions, and also affect regional-to-global carbon budgets. Extreme events and climate variability complicate the response of ecosystems and increase vulnerability by inducing large phenological responses that affect ecosystem function at seasonal (and longer) time scales. Studies using in-situ measurements have suggested that the growing season of temperate and boreal ecosystems is changing, and remote sensing-based research using time series imagery from coarse resolution sensors appear to confirm this trend. Specifically, studies using AVHRR NDVI data have documented changes in growing season NDVI that indicate widespread perturbations to boreal and temperate forests in response to climate change. However, the coarse spatial resolution and other limitations of AVHRR data constrain the types of inferences that can be drawn from these data. We describe research to address these challenges using Landsat data. Specifically, we use a new methodology that exploits dense time series of Landsat images to quantify spatio-temporal patterns in North American temperate and boreal forest growing season dynamics. Our methodology uses a sampling strategy designed to capture geographic variation in temperate and boreal forest properties, and focuses on regions of overlap between adjacent Landsat scenes, thereby significantly increasing the temporal sampling of Landsat images. Results from this research provide retrospective characterization of changes to temperate and boreal forest growing seasons spanning 30+ years at 30 m spatial resolution. In doing so, this research is (1) dramatically improving information about how temperate and boreal forests have changed in

  11. Patterns of Canopy and Surface Layer Consumption in a Boreal Forest Fire from Repeat Airborne Lidar

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Alonzo, Michael; Morton, Douglas C.; Cook, Bruce D.; Andersen, Hans-Erik; Babcock, Chad; Pattison, Robert

    2017-01-01

    Fire in the boreal region is the dominant agent of forest disturbance with direct impacts on ecosystem structure, carbon cycling, and global climate. Global and biome-scale impacts are mediated by burn severity, measured as loss of forest canopy and consumption of the soil organic layer. To date, knowledge of the spatial variability in burn severity has been limited by sparse field sampling and moderate resolution satellite data. Here, we used pre- and post-fire airborne lidar data to directly estimate changes in canopy vertical structure and surface elevation for a 2005 boreal forest fire on Alaskas Kenai Peninsula. We found that both canopy and surface losses were strongly linked to pre-fire species composition and exhibited important fine-scale spatial variability at sub-30m resolution. The fractional reduction in canopy volume ranged from 0.61 in lowland black spruce stands to 0.27 in mixed white spruce and broad leaf forest. Residual structure largely reflects standing dead trees, highlighting the influence of pre-fire forest structure on delayed carbon losses from above ground biomass, post-fire albedo, and variability in understory light environments. Median loss of surface elevation was highest in lowland black spruce stands (0.18 m) but much lower in mixed stands (0.02 m), consistent with differences in pre-fire organic layer accumulation. Spatially continuous depth-of-burn estimates from repeat lidar measurements provide novel information to constrain carbon emissions from the surface organic layer and may inform related research on post-fire successional trajectories. Spectral measures of burn severity from Landsat were correlated with canopy (r = 0.76) and surface (r = -0.71) removal in black spruce stands but captured less of the spatial variability in fire effects for mixed stands (canopy r = 0.56, surface r = -0.26), underscoring the difficulty in capturing fire effects in heterogeneous boreal forest landscapes using proxy measures of burn severity

  12. Disturbance ecology of North American boreal forests and associated northern mixed/subalpine forests [Chapter 3

    Treesearch

    James K. Agee

    2000-01-01

    Disturbance dynamics differ in the three subregions of the North American boreal forest (taiga, western United States, and eastern United States) where lynx are found, resulting in a range of potential effects on lynx populations. Fire severity tends to be high in most of the forest types where lynx habitat occurs, although subsequent succession will differ...

  13. Reconciling Harvest Intensity and Plant Diversity in Boreal Ecosystems: Does Intensification Influence Understory Plant Diversity?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kershaw, H. Maureen; Morris, Dave M.; Fleming, Robert L.; Luckai, Nancy J.

    2015-11-01

    Overall demand for forest products in the boreal forest is increasing to supply growing bio-energy demands in addition to traditional forest products. As a result, there is a need to refine current forest policies to reconcile production and ecosystem function within the context of ecologically sustainable management. This study assessed understory plants' richness, evenness, and diversity in six harvested boreal black spruce-dominated stands situated on loam, sand, and peat site types 15 years after the application of four harvest treatments of increasing biomass removals. Treatments included uncut, stem-only harvest, full-tree harvest, and full-tree harvest + blading of O horizon. Following canopy removal, species richness and diversity (Shannon's and Simpson's indices) increased on all soil types. The more than doubling of slash loading on the stem-only treatment plots compared to the full-tree plots led to significantly lower species diversity on loam sites; however, the reverse was observed on peat sites where the slash provided warmer, drier microsites facilitating the establishment of a broader array of species. Preexisting ericaceous shrub and sphagnum components continued to dominate on the peat sites. Compositional shifts were most evident for the full-tree + bladed treatment on all soil types, with increases in herbaceous cover including ruderal species. The results suggest that the intensification of harvesting on plant diversity varies with soil type, and these differential results should be considered in the refinement of forest biomass-harvesting guidelines to ensure ecological sustainability and biodiversity conservation over a broad suite of soil types.

  14. Reconciling Harvest Intensity and Plant Diversity in Boreal Ecosystems: Does Intensification Influence Understory Plant Diversity?

    PubMed

    Kershaw, H Maureen; Morris, Dave M; Fleming, Robert L; Luckai, Nancy J

    2015-11-01

    Overall demand for forest products in the boreal forest is increasing to supply growing bio-energy demands in addition to traditional forest products. As a result, there is a need to refine current forest policies to reconcile production and ecosystem function within the context of ecologically sustainable management. This study assessed understory plants' richness, evenness, and diversity in six harvested boreal black spruce-dominated stands situated on loam, sand, and peat site types 15 years after the application of four harvest treatments of increasing biomass removals. Treatments included uncut, stem-only harvest, full-tree harvest, and full-tree harvest + blading of O horizon. Following canopy removal, species richness and diversity (Shannon's and Simpson's indices) increased on all soil types. The more than doubling of slash loading on the stem-only treatment plots compared to the full-tree plots led to significantly lower species diversity on loam sites; however, the reverse was observed on peat sites where the slash provided warmer, drier microsites facilitating the establishment of a broader array of species. Preexisting ericaceous shrub and sphagnum components continued to dominate on the peat sites. Compositional shifts were most evident for the full-tree + bladed treatment on all soil types, with increases in herbaceous cover including ruderal species. The results suggest that the intensification of harvesting on plant diversity varies with soil type, and these differential results should be considered in the refinement of forest biomass-harvesting guidelines to ensure ecological sustainability and biodiversity conservation over a broad suite of soil types.

  15. Recent burning of boreal forests exceeds fire regime limits of the past 10,000 years.

    PubMed

    Kelly, Ryan; Chipman, Melissa L; Higuera, Philip E; Stefanova, Ivanka; Brubaker, Linda B; Hu, Feng Sheng

    2013-08-06

    Wildfire activity in boreal forests is anticipated to increase dramatically, with far-reaching ecological and socioeconomic consequences. Paleorecords are indispensible for elucidating boreal fire regime dynamics under changing climate, because fire return intervals and successional cycles in these ecosystems occur over decadal to centennial timescales. We present charcoal records from 14 lakes in the Yukon Flats of interior Alaska, one of the most flammable ecoregions of the boreal forest biome, to infer causes and consequences of fire regime change over the past 10,000 y. Strong correspondence between charcoal-inferred and observational fire records shows the fidelity of sedimentary charcoal records as archives of past fire regimes. Fire frequency and area burned increased ∼6,000-3,000 y ago, probably as a result of elevated landscape flammability associated with increased Picea mariana in the regional vegetation. During the Medieval Climate Anomaly (MCA; ∼1,000-500 cal B.P.), the period most similar to recent decades, warm and dry climatic conditions resulted in peak biomass burning, but severe fires favored less-flammable deciduous vegetation, such that fire frequency remained relatively stationary. These results suggest that boreal forests can sustain high-severity fire regimes for centuries under warm and dry conditions, with vegetation feedbacks modulating climate-fire linkages. The apparent limit to MCA burning has been surpassed by the regional fire regime of recent decades, which is characterized by exceptionally high fire frequency and biomass burning. This extreme combination suggests a transition to a unique regime of unprecedented fire activity. However, vegetation dynamics similar to feedbacks that occurred during the MCA may stabilize the fire regime, despite additional warming.

  16. Recent burning of boreal forests exceeds fire regime limits of the past 10,000 years

    PubMed Central

    Kelly, Ryan; Chipman, Melissa L.; Higuera, Philip E.; Stefanova, Ivanka; Brubaker, Linda B.; Hu, Feng Sheng

    2013-01-01

    Wildfire activity in boreal forests is anticipated to increase dramatically, with far-reaching ecological and socioeconomic consequences. Paleorecords are indispensible for elucidating boreal fire regime dynamics under changing climate, because fire return intervals and successional cycles in these ecosystems occur over decadal to centennial timescales. We present charcoal records from 14 lakes in the Yukon Flats of interior Alaska, one of the most flammable ecoregions of the boreal forest biome, to infer causes and consequences of fire regime change over the past 10,000 y. Strong correspondence between charcoal-inferred and observational fire records shows the fidelity of sedimentary charcoal records as archives of past fire regimes. Fire frequency and area burned increased ∼6,000–3,000 y ago, probably as a result of elevated landscape flammability associated with increased Picea mariana in the regional vegetation. During the Medieval Climate Anomaly (MCA; ∼1,000–500 cal B.P.), the period most similar to recent decades, warm and dry climatic conditions resulted in peak biomass burning, but severe fires favored less-flammable deciduous vegetation, such that fire frequency remained relatively stationary. These results suggest that boreal forests can sustain high-severity fire regimes for centuries under warm and dry conditions, with vegetation feedbacks modulating climate–fire linkages. The apparent limit to MCA burning has been surpassed by the regional fire regime of recent decades, which is characterized by exceptionally high fire frequency and biomass burning. This extreme combination suggests a transition to a unique regime of unprecedented fire activity. However, vegetation dynamics similar to feedbacks that occurred during the MCA may stabilize the fire regime, despite additional warming. PMID:23878258

  17. Wintertime photosynthetic capacity of black spruce (Picea mariana) in boreal forests in interior Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fujino, T.; Koyama, L. A.; Kielland, K.

    2015-12-01

    In boreal forests, the growing season is short, and winter temperature is low and fluctuates from considerably below freezing point to intermittent warm spells. Under such conditions, it is important for plants to retain their photosynthetic capacity throughout the winter. To understand the importance of wintertime photosynthetic activity for evergreen boreal coniferous species, the light response curve of black spruce (Picea mariana) was monitored in Fairbanks, interior Alaska (64°86'N, 147°84'W) throughout the winter, and compared with those in the summer. Cuttings of black spruce were collected, and gas exchange of their needles was measured in the incubator set to 0 °C using a gas analyzer (LI-6400, Li-Cor Inc.). A non-rectangular hyperbolic model was fitted to these data, and physiological parameters such as the maximum photosynthesis rate, dark respiration rate and quantum yield of photosynthesis were extracted. The apparent quantum yield of photosynthesis remained low throughout the winter for black spruce. The maximum photosynthesis rate was downregulated as air temperature fell in early winter, but did not increase in March when air temperature rose. This suggests that photoinhibition may occur more strongly in March than in early winter. The average maximum rates of photosynthesis in winter were almost 10% of the value measured in summer. On the other hand, the dark respiration rate did not considerably differ between seasons. These results provide new insights into winter photosynthetic activity and its role in boreal forest ecosystems.

  18. AVIRIS Land-Surface Mapping in Support of the Boreal Ecosystem-Atmosphere Study (BOREAS)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Roberts, Dar A.; Gamon, John; Keightley, Keir; Prentiss, Dylan; Reith, Ernest; Green, Robert

    2001-01-01

    A key scientific objective of the original Boreal Ecosystem-Atmospheric Study (BOREAS) field campaign (1993-1996) was to obtain the baseline data required for modeling and predicting fluxes of energy, mass, and trace gases in the boreal forest biome. These data sets are necessary to determine the sensitivity of the boreal forest biome to potential climatic changes and potential biophysical feedbacks on climate. A considerable volume of remotely-sensed and supporting field data were acquired by numerous researchers to meet this objective. By design, remote sensing and modeling were considered critical components for scaling efforts, extending point measurements from flux towers and field sites over larger spatial and longer temporal scales. A major focus of the BOREAS follow-on program is concerned with integrating the diverse remotely sensed and ground-based data sets to address specific questions such as carbon dynamics at local to regional scales. The Airborne Visible/Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (AVIRIS) has the potential of contributing to BOREAS through: (1) accurate retrieved apparent surface reflectance; (2) improved landcover classification; and (3) direct assessment of biochemical/biophysical information such as canopy liquid water and chlorophyll concentration through pigment fits. In this paper, we present initial products for major flux tower sites including: (1) surface reflectance of dominant cover types; (2) a land-cover classification developed using spectral mixture analysis (SMA) and Multiple Endmember Spectral Mixture Analysis (MESMA); and (3) liquid water maps. Our goal is to compare these land-cover maps to existing maps and to incorporate AVIRIS image products into models of photosynthetic flux.

  19. Regulation of Boreal soil respiration: evidence from a Swedish forest fire chronosequence.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mason, Kelly; Oakley, Simon; Ostle, Nicholas; DeLuca, Thomas; Arróniz-Crespo, María; Jones, Davey

    2014-05-01

    Globally, boreal forests occupy 14% of total land surface and are important regions for biogeochemical cycling of carbon (C) and nitrogen (N)1. They are recognised as stores of terrestrial C and reservoirs of uniquely adapted biodiversity. Like many forest biomes, boreal forests are under pressure from climate change and growing populations. C and N cycling in the boreal region is strongly influenced by the occurrence of forest fires, which return large amounts of stored N back into an otherwise N limited system2. The frequency and intensity of boreal forest fires is expected to increase in the next century as the global atmosphere warms and N deposition continues to increase due to human activities3,4. Despite the importance of these ecosystems, there is limited knowledge of the effects of interactions between climate and N limitation on soil respiration and feedbacks of carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gases (GHGs) to the atmosphere. In this research we aimed to improve understanding of how changes in the frequency and intensity of fires might alter N and C dynamics in the boreal region. Specifically, we examined the degree of N limitation and the temperature sensitivity of GHG (CO2, N2O and CH4) fluxes from soils underlying carpets of Pleurozium schreberi, a feather moss known to form important symbiotic relationships with N-fixing cyanobacteria1, from a fire chronosequence of Swedish boreal forest stands. We hypothesised that: (1) soil respiration in late succession ecosystems is most N limited due to high soil C:N ratios and high microbial biomass; and (2) early succession forest soil respiration is most temperature sensitive due to higher N availability and higher bacterial biomass. To test these hypotheses, we took soil cores from a chronosequence of six sites in the northern boreal region of Sweden, including two early, two mid, and two late succession stands. These sites are dominated by mixed Pinus sylvestris and Picea abies, with an understory

  20. A new model for estimating boreal forest fPAR

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Majasalmi, Titta; Rautiainen, Miina; Stenberg, Pauline

    2014-05-01

    Life on Earth is continuously sustained by the extraterrestrial flux of photosynthetically active radiation (PAR, 400-700 nm) from the sun. This flux is converted to biomass by chloroplasts in green vegetation. Thus, the fraction of absorbed PAR (fPAR) is a key parameter used in carbon balance studies, and is listed as one of the Essential Climate Variables (ECV). Temporal courses of fPAR for boreal forests are difficult to measure, because of the complex 3D structures. Thus, they are most often estimated based on models which quantify the dependency of absorbed radiation on canopy structure. In this study, we adapted a physically-based canopy radiation model into a fPAR model, and compared modeled and measured fPAR in structurally different boreal forest stands. The model is based on the spectral invariants theory, and uses leaf area index (LAI), canopy gap fractions and spectra of foliage and understory as input data. The model differs from previously developed more detailed fPAR models in that the complex 3D structure of coniferous forests is described using an aggregated canopy parameter - photon recollision probability p. The strength of the model is that all model inputs are measurable or available through other simple models. First, the model was validated with measurements of instantaneous fPAR obtained with the TRAC instrument in nine Scots pine, Norway spruce and Silver birch stands in a boreal forest in southern Finland. Good agreement was found between modeled and measured fPAR. Next, we applied the model to predict temporal courses of fPAR using data on incoming radiation from a nearby flux tower and sky irradiance models. Application of the model to simulate diurnal and seasonal values of fPAR indicated that the ratio of direct-to-total incident radiation and leaf area index are the key factors behind the magnitude and variation of stand-level fPAR values.

  1. Timing of plant phenophases since 1752 in the boreal forest environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kubin, Eero; Tolvanen, Anne; Karhu, Jouni; Valkama, Jari

    2016-04-01

    almost constant in the southern boreal zone. Effective temperature sum is important for the timing of the bud burst. The timing of phenological phenomena of forest vegetation, berry and seed crops reflects information about the response of the forest environment to the changes in the environmental factors. The global warming will be at its most powerful in the northern latitudes and this phenomenon is predicted to become increasingly more powerful in the future. Study of the regional differences will yield information about the changes in the northern limits of distribution of different plant species, and these changes can significantly affect the quantitative proportions of plant species. These changes, in turn, have an indirect impact on the entire ecosystem and the sources of livelihood relying on it. Phenological monitoring is nowadays more important than ever especially in boreal regions, where spring temperatures are elevated. Compilation and documentation of observations on plant phenophases play a key role in working out the rate of global climate change. To utilize citizen-science data together with the scientific monitoring will be discussed in the conference.

  2. Remote Sensing of Forest Cover in Boreal Zones of the Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sedykh, V. N.

    2011-12-01

    Ecological tension resulting from human activities generates a need for joint efforts of countries in the boreal zone aimed at sustainable forest development, including: conservation of forests binding carbon and ensuring stability of the atmosphere gas composition; preservation of purity and water content of forest areas as conditions ensuring sustainability of the historically formed structure of forest landscapes; and preservation of all flora and fauna species composition diversity as a condition for sustainable existence and functioning of forest ecosystems. We have to address these problems urgently due to climate warming which can interact with the forest cover. In particular, in the forest zone of Siberia, the climate aridization will inevitably result in periodic drying of shallow bogs and upland forests with thick forest litter. This will bring fires of unprecedented intensity which will lead to catastrophic atmospheric pollution. In this connection, the above problems can be solved only by the united efforts of boreal-zone countries, through establishing a uniform system for remote sensing of forests aimed at obtaining and periodic update of comprehensive information for rational decision-making in prevention of adverse human effect on the forest. A need to join efforts in this field of natural resource management is determined by disparate data which were created expressly for economic accounting units used mainly for the solution of economic timber resource problems. However, ecological tasks outlined above can be solved appropriately only by using uniform technologies that are registered within natural territorial complexes (landscapes) established throughout the entire boreal zone. Knowledge of forest state within natural territorial entities having specific physiographic conditions, with account for current and future anthropogenic load, allow one to define evidence-based forest growth potential at these landscapes to ensure development of

  3. Nitrogen dynamics in managed boreal forests: Recent advances and future research directions.

    PubMed

    Sponseller, Ryan A; Gundale, Michael J; Futter, Martyn; Ring, Eva; Nordin, Annika; Näsholm, Torgny; Laudon, Hjalmar

    2016-02-01

    Nitrogen (N) availability plays multiple roles in the boreal landscape, as a limiting nutrient to forest growth, determinant of terrestrial biodiversity, and agent of eutrophication in aquatic ecosystems. We review existing research on forest N dynamics in northern landscapes and address the effects of management and environmental change on internal cycling and export. Current research foci include resolving the nutritional importance of different N forms to trees and establishing how tree-mycorrhizal relationships influence N limitation. In addition, understanding how forest responses to external N inputs are mediated by above- and belowground ecosystem compartments remains an important challenge. Finally, forestry generates a mosaic of successional patches in managed forest landscapes, with differing levels of N input, biological demand, and hydrological loss. The balance among these processes influences the temporal patterns of stream water chemistry and the long-term viability of forest growth. Ultimately, managing forests to keep pace with increasing demands for biomass production, while minimizing environmental degradation, will require multi-scale and interdisciplinary perspectives on landscape N dynamics.

  4. Nitrogen and carbon reallocation in fungal mycelia during decomposition of boreal forest litter.

    PubMed

    Boberg, Johanna B; Finlay, Roger D; Stenlid, Jan; Ekblad, Alf; Lindahl, Björn D

    2014-01-01

    Boreal forests are characterized by spatially heterogeneous soils with low N availability. The decomposition of coniferous litter in these systems is primarily performed by basidiomycete fungi, which often form large mycelia with a well-developed capacity to reallocate resources spatially- an advantageous trait in heterogeneous environments. In axenic microcosm systems we tested whether fungi increase their biomass production by reallocating N between Pinus sylvestris (Scots pine) needles at different stages of decomposition. We estimated fungal biomass production by analysing the accumulation of the fungal cell wall compound chitin. Monospecific systems were compared with systems with interspecific interactions. We found that the fungi reallocated assimilated N and mycelial growth away from well-degraded litter towards fresh litter components. This redistribution was accompanied by reduced decomposition of older litter. Interconnection of substrates increased over-all fungal C use efficiency (i.e. the allocation of assimilated C to biomass rather than respiration), presumably by enabling fungal translocation of growth-limiting N to litter with higher C quality. Fungal connection between different substrates also restricted N-mineralization and production of dissolved organic N, suggesting that litter saprotrophs in boreal forest ecosystems primarily act to redistribute rather than release N. This spatial integration of different resource qualities was hindered by interspecific interactions, in which litters of contrasting quality were colonised by two different basidiomycete species. The experiments provide a detailed picture of how resource reallocation in two decomposer fungi leads to a more efficient utilisation of spatially separated resources under N-limitation. From an ecosystem point of view, such economic fungal behaviour could potentially contribute to organic matter accumulation in the litter layers of boreal forests.

  5. Charcoal Reflectance Reveals Early Holocene Boreal Deciduous Forests Burned at High Intensities

    PubMed Central

    Hudspith, Victoria A.; Belcher, Claire M.; Kelly, Ryan; Hu, Feng Sheng

    2015-01-01

    Wildfire size, frequency, and severity are increasing in the Alaskan boreal forest in response to climate warming. One of the potential impacts of this changing fire regime is the alteration of successional trajectories, from black spruce to mixed stands dominated by aspen, a vegetation composition not experienced since the early Holocene. Such changes in vegetation composition may consequently alter the intensity of fires, influencing fire feedbacks to the ecosystem. Paleorecords document past wildfire-vegetation dynamics and as such, are imperative for our understanding of how these ecosystems will respond to future climate warming. For the first time, we have used reflectance measurements of macroscopic charcoal particles (>180μm) from an Alaskan lake-sediment record to estimate ancient charring temperatures (termed pyrolysis intensity). We demonstrate that pyrolysis intensity increased markedly from an interval of birch tundra 11 ky ago (mean 1.52%Ro; 485°C), to the expansion of trees on the landscape ∼10.5 ky ago, remaining high to the present (mean 3.54%Ro; 640°C) irrespective of stand composition. Despite differing flammabilities and adaptations to fire, the highest pyrolysis intensities derive from two intervals with distinct vegetation compositions. 1) the expansion of mixed aspen and spruce woodland at 10 cal. kyr BP, and 2) the establishment of black spruce, and the modern boreal forest at 4 cal. kyr BP. Based on our analysis, we infer that predicted expansion of deciduous trees into the boreal forest in the future could lead to high intensity, but low severity fires, potentially moderating future climate-fire feedbacks. PMID:25853712

  6. Charcoal reflectance reveals early holocene boreal deciduous forests burned at high intensities.

    PubMed

    Hudspith, Victoria A; Belcher, Claire M; Kelly, Ryan; Hu, Feng Sheng

    2015-01-01

    Wildfire size, frequency, and severity are increasing in the Alaskan boreal forest in response to climate warming. One of the potential impacts of this changing fire regime is the alteration of successional trajectories, from black spruce to mixed stands dominated by aspen, a vegetation composition not experienced since the early Holocene. Such changes in vegetation composition may consequently alter the intensity of fires, influencing fire feedbacks to the ecosystem. Paleorecords document past wildfire-vegetation dynamics and as such, are imperative for our understanding of how these ecosystems will respond to future climate warming. For the first time, we have used reflectance measurements of macroscopic charcoal particles (>180μm) from an Alaskan lake-sediment record to estimate ancient charring temperatures (termed pyrolysis intensity). We demonstrate that pyrolysis intensity increased markedly from an interval of birch tundra 11 ky ago (mean 1.52%Ro; 485°C), to the expansion of trees on the landscape ~10.5 ky ago, remaining high to the present (mean 3.54%Ro; 640°C) irrespective of stand composition. Despite differing flammabilities and adaptations to fire, the highest pyrolysis intensities derive from two intervals with distinct vegetation compositions. 1) the expansion of mixed aspen and spruce woodland at 10 cal. kyr BP, and 2) the establishment of black spruce, and the modern boreal forest at 4 cal. kyr BP. Based on our analysis, we infer that predicted expansion of deciduous trees into the boreal forest in the future could lead to high intensity, but low severity fires, potentially moderating future climate-fire feedbacks.

  7. Modelling soil temperature and moisture and corresponding seasonality of photosynthesis and transpiration in a boreal spruce ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, S. H.; Jansson, P.-E.

    2012-05-01

    Recovery of photosynthesis and transpiration is strongly restricted by low temperatures in air and/or soil during the transition period from winter to spring in boreal zones. The extent to which air temperature (Ta) and soil temperature (Ts) influence the seasonality of photosynthesis and transpiration of a boreal spruce ecosystem was investigated using a process-based ecosystem model (CoupModel) together with eddy covariance (EC) data from one eddy flux tower and nearby soil measurements at Knottåsen, Sweden. A Monte Carlo based uncertainty method (GLUE) provided prior and posterior distributions of simulations representing a wide range of soil conditions and performance indicators. The simulated results showed sufficient flexibility to predict the measured cold and warm Ts in the moist and dry plots around the eddy flux tower. Moreover, the model presented a general ability to describe both biotic and abiotic processes for the Norway spruce stand. The dynamics of sensible heat fluxes were well described the corresponding latent heat fluxes and net ecosystem exchange of CO2. The parameter ranges obtained are probably valid to represent regional characteristics of boreal conifer forests, but were not easy to constrain to a smaller range than that produced by the assumed prior distributions. Finally, neglecting the soil temperature response function resulted in fewer behavioural models and probably more compensatory errors in other response functions for regulating the seasonality of ecosystem fluxes.

  8. Modelling soil temperature and moisture and corresponding seasonality of photosynthesis and transpiration in a boreal spruce ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, S. H.; Jansson, P.-E.

    2013-02-01

    Recovery of photosynthesis and transpiration is strongly restricted by low temperatures in air and/or soil during the transition period from winter to spring in boreal zones. The extent to which air temperature (Ta) and soil temperature (Ts) influence the seasonality of photosynthesis and transpiration of a boreal spruce ecosystem was investigated using a process-based ecosystem model (CoupModel) together with eddy covariance (EC) data from one eddy flux tower and nearby soil measurements at Knottåsen, Sweden. A Monte Carlo-based uncertainty method (GLUE) provided prior and posterior distributions of simulations representing a wide range of soil conditions and performance indicators. The simulated results showed sufficient flexibility to predict the measured cold and warm Ts in the moist and dry plots around the eddy flux tower. Moreover, the model presented a general ability to describe both biotic and abiotic processes for the Norway spruce stand. The dynamics of sensible heat fluxes were well described by the corresponding latent heat fluxes and net ecosystem exchange of CO2. The parameter ranges obtained are probably valid to represent regional characteristics of boreal conifer forests, but were not easy to constrain to a smaller range than that produced by the assumed prior distributions. Finally, neglecting the soil temperature response function resulted in fewer behavioural models and probably more compensatory errors in other response functions for regulating the seasonality of ecosystem fluxes.

  9. Carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide fluxes from a fire chronosequence in subarctic boreal forests of Canada.

    PubMed

    Köster, Egle; Köster, Kajar; Berninger, Frank; Aaltonen, Heidi; Zhou, Xuan; Pumpanen, Jukka

    2017-12-01

    Forest fires are one of the most important natural disturbances in boreal forests, and their occurrence and severity are expected to increase as a result of climate warming. A combination of factors induced by fire leads to a thawing of the near-surface permafrost layer in subarctic boreal forest. Earlier studies reported that an increase in the active layer thickness results in higher carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4) emissions. We studied changes in CO2, CH4 and nitrous oxide (N2O) fluxes in this study, and the significance of several environmental factors that influence the greenhouse gas (GHG) fluxes at three forest sites that last had fires in 2012, 1990 and 1969, and we compared these to a control area that had no fire for at least 100years. The soils in our study acted as sources of CO2 and N2O and sinks for CH4. The elapsed time since the last forest fire was the only factor that significantly influenced all studied GHG fluxes. Soil temperature affected the uptake of CH4, and the N2O fluxes were significantly influenced by nitrogen and carbon content of the soil, and by the active layer depth. Results of our study confirm that the impacts of a forest fire on GHGs last for a rather long period of time in boreal forests, and are influenced by the fire induced changes in the ecosystem. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. Retrieval of seasonal dynamics of forest understory reflectance from semi-arid to boreal forests using MODIS BRDF data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pisek, Jan; Chen, Jing; Kobayashi, Hideki; Rautiainen, Miina; Schaepman, Michael; Karnieli, Arnon; Sprintsin, Michael; Ryu, Youngryel; Nikopensius, Maris; Raabe, Kairi

    2016-04-01

    Ground vegetation (understory) provides an essential contribution to the whole-stand reflectance signal in many boreal, sub-boreal, and temperate forests. Accurate knowledge about forest understory reflectance is urgently needed in various forest reflectance modelling efforts. However, systematic collections of understory reflectance data covering different sites and ecosystems are almost missing. Measurement of understory reflectance is a real challenge because of an extremely high variability of irradiance at the forest floor, weak signal in some parts of the spectrum, spectral separability issues of over- and understory and its variable nature. Understory can consist of several sub-layers (regenerated tree, shrub, grasses or dwarf shrub, mosses, lichens, litter, bare soil), it has spatially-temporally variable species composition and ground coverage. Additional challenges are introduced by patchiness of ground vegetation, ground surface roughness, and understory-overstory relations. Due to this variability, remote sensing might be the only means to provide consistent data at spatially relevant scales. In this presentation, we report on retrieving seasonal courses of understory Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) from multi-angular MODIS BRDF/Albedo data. We compared satellite-based seasonal courses of understory NDVI against an extended collection of different types of forest sites with available in-situ understory reflectance measurements. These sites are distributed along a wide latitudinal gradient on the Northern hemisphere: a sparse and dense black spruce forests in Alaska and Canada, a northern European boreal forest in Finland, hemiboreal needleleaf and deciduous stands in Estonia, a mixed temperate forest in Switzerland, a cool temperate deciduous broadleaf forest in Korea, and a semi-arid pine plantation in Israel. Our results indicated the retrieval method performs well particularly over open forests of different types. We also demonstrated

  11. AVIRIS Land-Surface Mapping in Support of the Boreal Ecosystem-Atmosphere Study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Green, R.; Roberts, D.; Gamon, J.; Keightley, K.; Prentiss, D.; Reith, E.

    2000-01-01

    A key scientific objective of the original BOREAS field campaign (1993-1996) was to obtain the baseline data required for modeling and predicting fluxes of energy, mass and trace gases in the boreal forest biome.

  12. Vulnerability of carbon storage in North American boreal forests to wildfires during the 21st century

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Balshi, M. S.; McGuire, Anthony David; Duffy, P.; Flannigan, M.; Kicklighter, David W.; Melillo, J.

    2009-01-01

    The boreal forest contains large reserves of carbon. Across this region, wildfires influence the temporal and spatial dynamics of carbon storage. In this study, we estimate fire emissions and changes in carbon storage for boreal North America over the 21st century. We use a gridded data set developed with a multivariate adaptive regression spline approach to determine how area burned varies each year with changing climatic and fuel moisture conditions. We apply the process-based Terrestrial Ecosystem Model to evaluate the role of future fire on the carbon dynamics of boreal North America in the context of changing atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) concentration and climate in the A2 and B2 emissions scenarios of the CGCM2 global climate model. Relative to the last decade of the 20th century, decadal total carbon emissions from fire increase by 2.5–4.4 times by 2091–2100, depending on the climate scenario and assumptions about CO2fertilization. Larger fire emissions occur with warmer climates or if CO2 fertilization is assumed to occur. Despite the increases in fire emissions, our simulations indicate that boreal North America will be a carbon sink over the 21st century if CO2 fertilization is assumed to occur in the future. In contrast, simulations excluding CO2 fertilization over the same period indicate that the region will change to a carbon source to the atmosphere, with the source being 2.1 times greater under the warmer A2 scenario than the B2 scenario. To improve estimates of wildfire on terrestrial carbon dynamics in boreal North America, future studies should incorporate the role of dynamic vegetation to represent more accurately post-fire successional processes, incorporate fire severity parameters that change in time and space, account for human influences through increased fire suppression, and integrate the role of other disturbances and their interactions with future fire regime.

  13. Monitoring boreal ecosystem phenology with integrated active/passive microwave remote sensing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    McDonald, K. C.; Njoku, E.; Kimball, J.; Running, S.; Thompson, C.; Lee, J. K.

    2002-01-01

    The important role of the high latitudes in the functioning of global processes is becoming well established. The size and remoteness of arctic and boreal ecosystems, however, pose a challenge to quantification of both terrestrial ecosystem processes and their feedbacks to regional and global climate conditions. Boreal and arctic regions form a complex land cover mosaic where vegetation structure, condition and distribution are strongly regulated by environmental factors such as moisture availability, permafrost, growing season length, disturbance and soil nutrients.

  14. Monitoring boreal ecosystem phenology with integrated active/passive microwave remote sensing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    McDonald, K. C.; Njoku, E.; Kimball, J.; Running, S.; Thompson, C.; Lee, J. K.

    2002-01-01

    The important role of the high latitudes in the functioning of global processes is becoming well established. The size and remoteness of arctic and boreal ecosystems, however, pose a challenge to quantification of both terrestrial ecosystem processes and their feedbacks to regional and global climate conditions. Boreal and arctic regions form a complex land cover mosaic where vegetation structure, condition and distribution are strongly regulated by environmental factors such as moisture availability, permafrost, growing season length, disturbance and soil nutrients.

  15. Nitrous oxide fluxes from forest floor, tree stems and canopies of boreal tree species during spring

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haikarainen, Iikka; Halmeenmäki, Elisa; Machacova, Katerina; Pihlatie, Mari

    2017-04-01

    Boreal forests are considered as small sources of atmospheric nitrous oxide (N2O) due to microbial N2O production in the soils. Recent evidence shows that trees may play an important role in N2O exchange of forest ecosystems by offering pathways for soil produced N2O to the atmosphere. To confirm magnitude, variability and the origin of the tree mediated N2O emissions more research is needed, especially in boreal forests which have been in a minority in such investigation. We measured forest floor, tree stem and shoot N2O exchange of three boreal tree species at the beginning of the growing season (13.4.-13.6.2015) at SMEAR II station in Hyytiälä, located in Southern Finland (61˚ 51´N, 24˚ 17´E, 181 a.s.l.). The fluxes were measured in silver birch (Betula pendula), downy birch (B. pubescens) and Norway spruce (Picea abies) on two sites with differing soil type and characteristics (paludified and mineral soil), vegetation cover and forest structure. The aim was to study the vertical profile of N2O fluxes at stem level and to observe temporal changes in N2O fluxes over the beginning of the growing season. The N2O exchange was determined using the static chamber technique and gas chromatographic analyses. Scaffold towers were used for measurements at multiple stem heights and at the canopy level. Overall, the N2O fluxes from the forest floor and trees at both sites were very small and close to the detection limit. The measured trees mainly emitted N2O from their stems and shoots, while the forest floor acted as a sink of N2O at the paludified site and as a small source of N2O at the mineral soil site. Stem emissions from all the trees at both sites were on average below 0.5 μg N2O m-2 of stem area h-1, and the shoot emissions varied between 0.2 and 0.5 ng N2O m-2 g-1 dry biomass. When the N2O fluxes were scaled up to the whole forest ecosystem, based on the tree biomass and stand density, the N2O emissions from birch and spruce trees at the paludified site

  16. Effects of warming on the structure and function of a boreal black spruce forest

    SciTech Connect

    Stith T.Gower

    2010-03-03

    A strong argument can be made that there is a greater need to study the effect of warming on boreal forests more than on any other terrestrial biome. Boreal forests, the second largest forest biome, are predicted to experience the greatest warming of any forest biome in the world, but a process-based understanding of how warming will affect the structure and function of this economically and ecologically important forest biome is lacking. The effects of warming on species composition, canopy structure and biogeochemical cycles are likely to be complex; elucidating the underlying mechanisms will require long-term whole-ecosystem manipulation to capture all the complex feedbacks (Shaver et al. 2000, Rustad et al. 2001, Stromgren 2001). The DOE Program for Ecosystem Research funded a three year project (2002-2005) to use replicated heated chambers on soil warming plots in northern Manitoba to examine the direct effects of whole-ecosystem warming. We are nearing completion of our first growing season of measurements (fall 2004). In spite of the unforeseen difficulty of installing the heating cable, our heating and irrigation systems worked extremely well, maintaining environmental conditions within 5-10% of the specified design 99% of the time. Preliminary data from these systems, all designed and built by our laboratory at the University of Wisconsin, support our overall hypothesis that warming will increase the carbon sink strength of upland boreal black spruce forests. I request an additional three years of funding to continue addressing the original objectives: (1) Examine the effect of warming on phenology of overstory, understory and bryophyte strata. Sap flux systems and dendrometer bands, monitored by data loggers, will be used to quantify changes in phenology and water use. (2) Quantify the effects of warming on nitrogen and water use by overstory, understory and bryophytes. (3) Compare effects of warming on autotrophic respiration and above- and belowground

  17. Boreal coniferous forest density leads to significant variations in soil physical and geochemical properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bastianelli, Carole; Ali, Adam A.; Beguin, Julien; Bergeron, Yves; Grondin, Pierre; Hély, Christelle; Paré, David

    2017-07-01

    At the northernmost extent of the managed forest in Quebec, Canada, the boreal forest is currently undergoing an ecological transition between two forest ecosystems. Open lichen woodlands (LW) are spreading southward at the expense of more productive closed-canopy black spruce-moss forests (MF). The objective of this study was to investigate whether soil properties could distinguish MF from LW in the transition zone where both ecosystem types coexist. This study brings out clear evidence that differences in vegetation cover can lead to significant variations in soil physical and geochemical properties.Here, we showed that soil carbon, exchangeable cations, and iron and aluminium crystallinity vary between boreal closed-canopy forests and open lichen woodlands, likely attributed to variations in soil microclimatic conditions. All the soils studied were typical podzolic soil profiles evolved from glacial till deposits that shared a similar texture of the C layer. However, soil humus and the B layer varied in thickness and chemistry between the two forest ecosystems at the pedon scale. Multivariate analyses of variance were used to evaluate how soil properties could help distinguish the two types at the site scale. MF humus (FH horizons horizons composing the O layer) showed significantly higher concentrations of organic carbon and nitrogen and of the main exchangeable base cations (Ca, Mg) than LW soils. The B horizon of LW sites held higher concentrations of total Al and Fe oxides and particularly greater concentrations of inorganic amorphous Fe oxides than MF mineral soils, while showing a thinner B layer. Overall, our results show that MF store three times more organic carbon in their soils (B+FH horizons, roots apart) than LW. We suggest that variations in soil properties between MF and LW are linked to a cascade of events involving the impacts of natural disturbances such as wildfires on forest regeneration that determines the vegetation structure (stand density

  18. Trace gas emissions from chaparral and boreal forest fires

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cofer, Wesley R., III; Levine, Joel S.; Sebacher, Daniel I.; Winstead, Edward L.; Riggan, Philip J.; Stocks, Brian J.; Brass, James A.; Ambrosia, Vincent G.

    1989-01-01

    Using smoke samples collected during low-level helicopter flights, the mixing ratios of CO2, CO, CH4, total nonmethane hydrocarbons, H2, and N2O over burning chaparral in southern California and over a burning boreal forest site in northern Ontario, Canada, were determined. Carbon dioxide-normalized emission ratios were determined for each trace gas for conditions of flaming, mixed, and smoldering combustion. The emission ratios for these trace gases were found to be highest for the smoldering combustion, generally thought to be the least efficient combustion stage. However, high emission ratios for these gases could be also produced during very vigorous flaming combustion.

  19. Trace gas emissions from chaparral and boreal forest fires

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cofer, Wesley R., III; Levine, Joel S.; Sebacher, Daniel I.; Winstead, Edward L.; Riggan, Philip J.; Stocks, Brian J.; Brass, James A.; Ambrosia, Vincent G.

    1989-01-01

    Using smoke samples collected during low-level helicopter flights, the mixing ratios of CO2, CO, CH4, total nonmethane hydrocarbons, H2, and N2O over burning chaparral in southern California and over a burning boreal forest site in northern Ontario, Canada, were determined. Carbon dioxide-normalized emission ratios were determined for each trace gas for conditions of flaming, mixed, and smoldering combustion. The emission ratios for these trace gases were found to be highest for the smoldering combustion, generally thought to be the least efficient combustion stage. However, high emission ratios for these gases could be also produced during very vigorous flaming combustion.

  20. Effects of Dolomitic Limestone Application on Zinc Speciation in Boreal Forest Smelter-Contaminated Soils.

    PubMed

    Hamilton, Jordan G; Farrell, Richard E; Chen, Ning; Reid, Joel; Feng, Renfei; Peak, Derek

    2016-11-01

    Anthropogenic activities at the HudBay Minerals, Inc., Flin Flon (Manitoba, Canada) mining and processing facility have severely affected the surrounding boreal forest ecosystem. Soil contamination occurred via a combination of metal and sulfuric acid deposition and has resulted in forest dieback and ineffective natural recovery. A community-led effort to revegetate areas of the landscape through the application of a dolomitic limestone has been met with varied success. Zinc (Zn) speciation has shown to be closely linked to the presence or absence of an invasive metal-tolerant grass species, with soils being broadly classed into two revegetation response groups. Group I, characterized by the absence of metal-tolerant grasses, and group II, characterized by the presence of metal-tolerant grasses. The systematic approach used to lime areas of the landscape produced a liming chronosequence for each group. This study used a combination of X-ray absorption spectroscopy, X-ray fluorescence mapping, and X-ray diffraction techniques to determine the effect of liming on Zn speciation in these chronosequences. Liming group I soils resulted in the formation of a neo-phase Zn-Al-hydroxy interlayer coprecipitate and subsequent rapid boreal forest revegetation. The effect of liming on Zn speciation on the group II soils resulted in a gradual transition of increasingly stable adsorption species, culminating with a stable Zn-Al-layered double hydroxide precipitate. Boreal forest vegetation has failed to recolonize group II soils during the study. However, the formation of the layered double hydroxide species resulted in a significant reduction in CaCl-extractable Zn. Further research is required to determine how to promote the revegetation of these soils. Copyright © by the American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, and Soil Science Society of America, Inc.

  1. Salvage logging following fires can minimize boreal caribou habitat loss while maintaining forest quotas: An example of compensatory cumulative effects.

    PubMed

    Beguin, Julien; McIntire, Eliot J B; Raulier, Frédéric

    2015-11-01

    Protected area networks are the dominant conservation approach that is used worldwide for protecting biodiversity. Conservation planning in managed forests, however, presents challenges when endangered species use old-growth forests targeted by the forest industry for timber supply. In many ecosystems, this challenge is further complicated by the occurrence of natural disturbance events that disrupt forest attributes at multiple scales. Using spatially explicit landscape simulation experiments, we gather insights into how these large scale, multifaceted processes (fire risk, timber harvesting and the amount of protected area) influenced both the persistence of the threatened boreal caribou and the level of timber supply in the boreal forest of eastern Canada. Our result showed that failure to account explicitly and a priori for fire risk in the calculation of timber supply led to an overestimation of timber harvest volume, which in turn led to rates of cumulative disturbances that threatened both the long-term persistence of boreal caribou and the sustainability of the timber supply itself. Salvage logging, however, allowed some compensatory cumulative effects. It minimised the reductions of timber supply within a range of ∼10% while reducing the negative impact of cumulative disturbances caused by fire and logging on caribou. With the global increase of the human footprint on forest ecosystems, our approach and results provide useful tools and insights for managers to resolve what often appear as lose-lose situation between the persistence of species at risk and timber harvest in other forest ecosystems. These tools contribute to bridge the gap between conservation and forest management, two disciplines that remain too often disconnected in practice.

  2. Controls on and consequences of specific leaf area variation with permafrost depth in a boreal forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anderson, C.; Bond-Lamberty, B. P.; Huang, M.; Xu, Y.; Stegen, J.

    2016-12-01

    Specific leaf area (SLA, leaf area per unit dry mass) is an index of plant carbon captured by photosynthesis and an important input into many terrestrial process models. However, the controls on and consequences of SLA variation are poorly understood, especially in high latitude, climatically-sensitive permafrost regions. To address this, we measured SLA along with soil and topographic properties across a boreal forest permafrost transition, in which forest composition changed as permafrost deepened from 54 to >150 cm. Using replicated transects, we characterized both linear and threshold relationships between topographic and edaphic variables and SLA, and evaluated and expanded upon a conceptual model of environmental factors and vegetation patterns. We found that the depth of the soil active layer above permafrost (ALD) was highly correlated with SLA, for both coniferous and deciduous boreal tree species. Across a permafrost transition, intraspecific SLA variation was associated with a fivefold increase in NPP, suggesting that changes in ALD due to permafrost thaw could heavily influence ecosystem carbon accumulation. High levels of intraspecific trait variation suggest the need for flexible trait representation across plant functional types in Earth System Models. We thus incorporated our empirical environment-SLA relationships into spatially explicit spin-ups of the Community Land Model (CLM v4.5) in an effort to constrain model uncertainty. Dynamic representation of plant traits can improve our representation of intraspecific trait variability and its functional relationship with environmental gradients in models predicting ecosystem responses to ongoing climate change.

  3. Diverse growth trends and climate responses across Eurasia’s boreal forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hellmann, Lena; Agafonov, Leonid; Charpentier Ljungqvist, Fredrik; Churakova (Sidorova, Olga; Düthorn, Elisabeth; Esper, Jan; Hülsmann, Lisa; Kirdyanov, Alexander V.; Moiseev, Pavel; Myglan, Vladimir S.; Nikolaev, Anatoly N.; Reinig, Frederick; Schweingruber, Fritz H.; Solomina, Olga; Tegel, Willy; Büntgen, Ulf

    2016-07-01

    The area covered by boreal forests accounts for ˜16% of the global and 22% of the Northern Hemisphere landmass. Changes in the productivity and functioning of this circumpolar biome not only have strong effects on species composition and diversity at regional to larger scales, but also on the Earth’s carbon cycle. Although temporal inconsistency in the response of tree growth to temperature has been reported from some locations at the higher northern latitudes, a systematic dendroecological network assessment is still missing for most of the boreal zone. Here, we analyze the geographical patterns of changes in summer temperature and precipitation across northern Eurasia >60 °N since 1951 AD, as well as the growth trends and climate responses of 445 Pinus, Larix and Picea ring width chronologies in the same area and period. In contrast to widespread summer warming, fluctuations in precipitation and tree growth are spatially more diverse and overall less distinct. Although the influence of summer temperature on ring formation is increasing with latitude and distinct moisture effects are restricted to a few southern locations, growth sensitivity to June-July temperature variability is only significant at 16.6% of all sites (p ≤ 0.01). By revealing complex climate constraints on the productivity of Eurasia’s northern forests, our results question the a priori suitability of boreal tree-ring width chronologies for reconstructing summer temperatures. This study further emphasizes regional climate differences and their role on the dynamics of boreal ecosystems, and also underlines the importance of free data access to facilitate the compilation and evaluation of massively replicated and updated dendroecological networks.

  4. Deciduous Tree Species Alter Nitrogen and Phosphorus Availability in Mid-successional Alaskan Boreal Forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Melvin, A. M.; Mack, M. C.; Johnstone, J. F.; Schuur, E. A.

    2013-12-01

    In Alaskan boreal forest, increased fire severity associated with climate change is altering successional processes and ecosystem nutrient dynamics. Fire is a common disturbance in Interior Alaska and typically burns forests dominated by black spruce (Picea mariana), a tree species associated with slow nutrient turnover and high soil organic matter accumulation rates. Historically, low severity fires have driven black spruce regeneration post-fire, thereby maintaining slow nutrient cycling rates and large soil organic matter stocks. In contrast, high severity fires consume the organic layer and can lead to the establishment of deciduous tree species on exposed mineral soil, which produce less recalcitrant leaf litter and exhibit faster nutrient cycling rates. To improve our understanding of the long-term impacts of tree species composition on nutrient cycling in boreal forest, we quantified nitrogen (N) cycling rates and estimated soil N, phosphorus (P), and base cation pools in adjacent, mid-successional stands of black spruce and Alaska paper birch (Betula neoalaskana) that established following a 1960 fire near Fairbanks, Alaska. Results indicate significantly higher net N mineralization in paper birch soils relative to black spruce for both the fibric organic layer and top 10 cm of mineral soil during 30-day and 90-day lab incubation studies. Net nitrification was significantly higher in the paper birch fibric layer after 90 days. Total soil N concentrations did not differ between paper birch and black spruce stands, however the black spruce organic layer was significantly larger than that of birch, resulting in larger organic layer N stocks (130 vs. 87 g N m2). In contrast, total P concentrations were significantly higher in the organic layer in birch forest, but the total P stocks did not differ significantly between species because of the larger mass of soil organic matter in the black spruce. These findings suggest that a shift towards greater deciduous

  5. Simulating boreal forest carbon dynamics after stand-replacing fire disturbance: insights from a global process-based vegetation model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yue, C.; Ciais, P.; Luyssaert, S.; Cadule, P.; Harden, J.; Randerson, J.; Bellassen, V.; Wang, T.; Piao, S. L.; Poulter, B.; Viovy, N.

    2013-04-01

    Stand-replacing fires are the dominant fire type in North American boreal forest and leave a historical legacy of a mosaic landscape of different aged forest cohorts. To accurately quantify the role of fire in historical and current regional forest carbon balance using models, one needs to explicitly simulate the new forest cohort that is established after fire. The present study adapted the global process-based vegetation model ORCHIDEE to simulate boreal forest fire CO2 emissions and follow-up recovery after a stand-replacing fire, with representation of postfire new cohort establishment, forest stand structure and the following self-thinning process. Simulation results are evaluated against three clusters of postfire forest chronosequence observations in Canada and Alaska. Evaluation variables for simulated postfire carbon dynamics include: fire carbon emissions, CO2 fluxes (gross primary production, total ecosystem respiration and net ecosystem exchange), leaf area index (LAI), and biometric measurements (aboveground biomass carbon, forest floor carbon, woody debris carbon, stand individual density, stand basal area, and mean diameter at breast height). The model simulation results, when forced by local climate and the atmospheric CO2 history on each chronosequence site, generally match the observed CO2 fluxes and carbon stock data well, with model-measurement mean square root of deviation comparable with measurement accuracy (for CO2 flux ~100 g C m-2 yr-1, for biomass carbon ~1000 g C m-2 and for soil carbon ~2000 g C m-2). We find that current postfire forest carbon sink on evaluation sites observed by chronosequence methods is mainly driven by historical atmospheric CO2 increase when forests recover from fire disturbance. Historical climate generally exerts a negative effect, probably due to increasing water stress caused by significant temperature increase without sufficient increase in precipitation. Our simulation results demonstrate that a global

  6. Simulating boreal forest carbon dynamics after stand-replacing fire disturbance: insights from a global process-based vegetation model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yue, C.; Ciais, P.; Luyssaert, S.; Cadule, P.; Harden, J.; Randerson, J.; Bellassen, V.; Wang, T.; Piao, S. L.; Poulter, B.; Viovy, N.

    2013-12-01

    Stand-replacing fires are the dominant fire type in North American boreal forests. They leave a historical legacy of a mosaic landscape of different aged forest cohorts. This forest age dynamics must be included in vegetation models to accurately quantify the role of fire in the historical and current regional forest carbon balance. The present study adapted the global process-based vegetation model ORCHIDEE to simulate the CO2 emissions from boreal forest fire and the subsequent recovery after a stand-replacing fire; the model represents postfire new cohort establishment, forest stand structure and the self-thinning process. Simulation results are evaluated against observations of three clusters of postfire forest chronosequences in Canada and Alaska. The variables evaluated include: fire carbon emissions, CO2 fluxes (gross primary production, total ecosystem respiration and net ecosystem exchange), leaf area index, and biometric measurements (aboveground biomass carbon, forest floor carbon, woody debris carbon, stand individual density, stand basal area, and mean diameter at breast height). When forced by local climate and the atmospheric CO2 history at each chronosequence site, the model simulations generally match the observed CO2 fluxes and carbon stock data well, with model-measurement mean square root of deviation comparable with the measurement accuracy (for CO2 flux ~100 g C m-2 yr-1, for biomass carbon ~1000 g C m-2 and for soil carbon ~2000 g C m-2). We find that the current postfire forest carbon sink at the evaluation sites, as observed by chronosequence methods, is mainly due to a combination of historical CO2 increase and forest succession. Climate change and variability during this period offsets some of these expected carbon gains. The negative impacts of climate were a likely consequence of increasing water stress caused by significant temperature increases that were not matched by concurrent increases in precipitation. Our simulation results

  7. Simulating boreal forest carbon dynamics after stand-replacing fire disturbance: insights from a global process-based vegetation model

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Yue, C.; Ciais, P.; Luyssaert, S.; Cadule, P.; Harden, J.; Randerson, J.; Bellassen, V.; Wang, T.; Piao, S.L.; Poulter, B.; Viovy, N.

    2013-01-01

    Stand-replacing fires are the dominant fire type in North American boreal forests. They leave a historical legacy of a mosaic landscape of different aged forest cohorts. This forest age dynamics must be included in vegetation models to accurately quantify the role of fire in the historical and current regional forest carbon balance. The present study adapted the global process-based vegetation model ORCHIDEE to simulate the CO2 emissions from boreal forest fire and the subsequent recovery after a stand-replacing fire; the model represents postfire new cohort establishment, forest stand structure and the self-thinning process. Simulation results are evaluated against observations of three clusters of postfire forest chronosequences in Canada and Alaska. The variables evaluated include: fire carbon emissions, CO2 fluxes (gross primary production, total ecosystem respiration and net ecosystem exchange), leaf area index, and biometric measurements (aboveground biomass carbon, forest floor carbon, woody debris carbon, stand individual density, stand basal area, and mean diameter at breast height). When forced by local climate and the atmospheric CO2 history at each chronosequence site, the model simulations generally match the observed CO2 fluxes and carbon stock data well, with model-measurement mean square root of deviation comparable with the measurement accuracy (for CO2 flux ~100 g C m−2 yr−1, for biomass carbon ~1000 g C m−2 and for soil carbon ~2000 g C m−2). We find that the current postfire forest carbon sink at the evaluation sites, as observed by chronosequence methods, is mainly due to a combination of historical CO2 increase and forest succession. Climate change and variability during this period offsets some of these expected carbon gains. The negative impacts of climate were a likely consequence of increasing water stress caused by significant temperature increases that were not matched by concurrent increases in precipitation. Our simulation

  8. Trophic cascades, invasive species and body-size hierarchies interactively modulate climate change responses of ecotonal temperate–boreal forest

    PubMed Central

    Frelich, Lee E.; Peterson, Rolf O.; Dovčiak, Martin; Reich, Peter B.; Vucetich, John A.; Eisenhauer, Nico

    2012-01-01

    As the climate warms, boreal tree species are expected to be gradually replaced by temperate species within the southern boreal forest. Warming will be accompanied by changes in above- and below-ground consumers: large moose (Alces alces) replaced by smaller deer (Odocoileus virginianus) above-ground, and small detritivores replaced by larger exotic earthworms below-ground. These shifts may induce a cascade of ecological impacts across trophic levels that could alter the boreal to temperate forest transition. Deer are more likely to browse saplings of temperate tree species, and European earthworms favour seedlings of boreal tree species more than temperate species, potentially hindering the ability of temperate tree species to expand northwards. We hypothesize that warming-induced changes in consumers will lead to novel plant communities by changing the filter on plant species success, and that above- and below-ground cascades of trophic interactions will allow boreal tree species to persist during early phases of warming, leading to an abrupt change at a later time. The synthesis of evidence suggests that consumers can modify the climate change-induced transition of ecosystems. PMID:23007083

  9. Trophic cascades, invasive species and body-size hierarchies interactively modulate climate change responses of ecotonal temperate-boreal forest.

    PubMed

    Frelich, Lee E; Peterson, Rolf O; Dovčiak, Martin; Reich, Peter B; Vucetich, John A; Eisenhauer, Nico

    2012-11-05

    As the climate warms, boreal tree species are expected to be gradually replaced by temperate species within the southern boreal forest. Warming will be accompanied by changes in above- and below-ground consumers: large moose (Alces alces) replaced by smaller deer (Odocoileus virginianus) above-ground, and small detritivores replaced by larger exotic earthworms below-ground. These shifts may induce a cascade of ecological impacts across trophic levels that could alter the boreal to temperate forest transition. Deer are more likely to browse saplings of temperate tree species, and European earthworms favour seedlings of boreal tree species more than temperate species, potentially hindering the ability of temperate tree species to expand northwards. We hypothesize that warming-induced changes in consumers will lead to novel plant communities by changing the filter on plant species success, and that above- and below-ground cascades of trophic interactions will allow boreal tree species to persist during early phases of warming, leading to an abrupt change at a later time. The synthesis of evidence suggests that consumers can modify the climate change-induced transition of ecosystems.

  10. INSECTS & PATHOGENS Regulators of Forest Ecosystems

    Treesearch

    Robert A. Haack; James W. Byler

    1993-01-01

    Today's forest managers are challenged by issues such as soil productivity, biodiversity, threatened and endangered species, and ecosystem sustainability; and ecosystem management has been proposed as a way to deal with them. The Society of American Foresters (1993) defines this term as keeping forest ecosystems functioning well over long periods of time in order...

  11. Forest-climate feedbacks mediated through fire in the Eastern boreal forests of Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bernier, P. Y.; Girardin, M. P.; Desjardins, R. L.; Gauthier, S.; Karimi-Zindashty, Y.; Worth, D.; Beaudoin, A.; Luo, Y.; Wang, S.

    2010-12-01

    Boreal forests are one of the largest biomes on earth, covering 27% of the world’s forests. In Canada, the dynamics of the boreal forests are largely dominated by large scale disturbances, with crown fires being the most geographically and temporally common. The probability of fire occurrence is strongly coupled to climate, making fire regimes quite variable across the country. Recent trends in fire regimes as well as predicted trends under climate scenarios also vary spatially. We present the results of two studies in which we have evaluated the climate - fire - forest feedbacks in parts of the boreal forest. Results show that feedbacks can be substantial and can alter the importance and even the direction of forest impacts on the climate system. The first feedback investigated was the link between fire-driven changes in forest cover properties and albedo in the boreal forests of Eastern Canada. Repeated disturbances in closed canopy forest dominated by black spruce (Picea mariana) on coarse soils sometimes push stands into an alternate stable open lichen woodland state. These lichen woodlands have a high albedo on account of the pale ground cover. Calculations show that the increase in albedo due to the opening of the canopy has a greater radiative forcing effect than that of the CO2 emitted to the atmosphere on account of the burning of the original forest. In these regions, climate-driven fire regimes thus generate a negative feedback to the climate system through their effects on forest cover properties. The second feedback investigated is linked to a recent decrease in fire frequency in Eastern Canada, and how this decrease might be affecting the growth-enhancing effect of a warmer climate because of its impact on the age-class distribution of the forest. The fire regime drives the age class distribution of forest landscapes. Since age class distribution drives landscape-level productivity, we have studied how this effect interacts with climate warming in

  12. Environmental constraints on transpiration and stomatal conductance in a Siberian Arctic boreal forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kropp, Heather; Loranty, Michael; Alexander, Heather D.; Berner, Logan T.; Natali, Susan M.; Spawn, Seth A.

    2017-03-01

    Boreal forest ecosystems are experiencing changes in plant productivity that are likely to continue with ongoing climate change. Transpiration (T) and canopy stomatal conductance (gc) are a key influence on plant productivity, and a better understanding of drivers and limitations of T and gc is necessary for constraining estimates of boreal ecosystem change. We describe patterns in T and gc of a deciduous conifer, Larix cajanderi, in an arctic boreal forest in northeastern Russia across three growing seasons from 2013 to 2015. We examine the influence of environmental drivers on gc using a phenomenological model. T was highly variable across days and varied between 0.03 and 0.75 L m-2 d-1. T and gc largely covaried with daily fluctuations in air temperature and vapor pressure deficit. gc was highly suppressed on days when the vapor pressure deficits exceeded 0.75 kPa with an average daily gc of 37.55 mmol m-2 s-1, and the average daily gc was almost double (71.25 mmol m-2 s-1) when vapor pressure deficits stayed below 0.75 kPa. Daily variation in gc was significantly related to air temperature, permafrost thaw depth, and past precipitation. The influence of past precipitation and permafrost thaw depth on gc indicates that belowground conditions relating to soil moisture status are a key limitation for T. Such limitations on gc and T suggest that soil water and plant water stress play an important role in plant productivity and water relations in far northeastern Siberia.

  13. JERS-1 SAR Mosaics of the North American Boreal Forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chapman, B.; McDonald, K.; McGarragh, G.; Williams, C.

    2002-12-01

    The National Space Development Agency of Japan (NASDA) initiated the Global Boreal Forest Mapping (GBFM) project in the mid-1990s, in collaboration with NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), the European Commission's Joint Research Center (JRC), the Alaska SAR Facility (ASF), and a team of investigators from around the world. The objective of this project was to use the Japanese Earth Resources Satellite (JERS-1) Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) to image at high resolution the Earth's Boreal forests. Since SAR can obtain imagery independent of solar illumination and cloud conditions, it was possible to image these regions during the winter, as well as the summer. Within the receiving station mask of ASF (which covers Alaska and much of Western Canada), particularly good temporal diversity was obtained since direct downlinks to ASF were possible. Outside of the ASF mask the data were recorded and then retransmitted later to receiving stations, which limited the data acquisitions. However, it was still possible to produce "winter" and "summer" mosaics of most of boreal North America (within three month temporal windows). The mosaics were produced at 100 m resolution, and are sensitive to land cover structural and moisture properties including forest structure, freeze/thaw state, and forest inundation. The methods used to mosaic the imagery were also used for mapping South America in the Global Rain Forest Mapping (GRFM) project, and similar to techniques applied by the NASA Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (STRM). Mosaicking and co-registering the North American data set were particularly difficult due to the large number of scenes (14,000), the large geo-location corrections that were required, and the convergence of the image swaths at the far northern latitudes. The mosaics will be distributed freely on DVD media for scientific and educational purposes. The techniques developed for this task will be useful for mosaicking imagery from the SAR on-board the NASDA

  14. Altitudinal vs Latitudinal Climactic Drivers: A Comparison of a Relict Picea and Abies Forest in the Southern Appalachians versus the Hemi-Boreal Transition Zone off Southern Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Evans, A.; Lafon, C. W.

    2015-12-01

    Identification of biotic and abiotic determinants of tree species range limits is critical for understanding the effects of climate change on species distributions. Upward shifts of species distributions in montane areas have been widely reported but there have been few reports of latitudinal range retractions. Previous studies have indicated that southern latitudinal limits of a species range are dictated by biotic factors such as competition while others have suggested that abiotic factors, such as temperature, dictate these limits. We investigated the potential climatic gradients at the southern latitudinal limit of the Spruce (Picea) and Fir (Abies) species that dominate the Canadian boreal forest community as well as relict boreal forests containing similar species found in the high elevation areas of the Southern Appalachians. Existing research has suggested that relict ecosystems are more sensitive to climate change and can be indicative of future changes at latitudinal range limits. Expanding on this literature, we hypothesized that we would see similar gradients in climatic variables at the southern latitudinal limit of the Canadian boreal forest and those in the relict boreal forests southern Appalachians acting as controlling factors of these species distributions. We used forty years of climate data from weather stations along the southern edge of the boreal forest in the Canadian Shield provinces, species distribution data from the Canadian National Forest Inventory, (CNFI) geospatial data from the National Park Service (NPS), and historical weather data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to perform our analysis. Our results indicate different climate variables act as controls of warm edge range limits of the Canadian boreal forest than those of the relict boreal forest of the southern Appalachians. However, we believe range retractions of the relict forest may be indicative of a more gradual response of similar species

  15. Influence of the forest canopy on total and methyl mercury deposition in the boreal forest

    Treesearch

    E.L. Witt; R.K. Kolka; E.A. Nater; T.R. Wickman

    2009-01-01

    Atmospheric mercury deposition by wet and dry processes contributes mercury to terrestrial and aquatic systems. Factors influencing the amount of mercury deposited to boreal forests were identified in this study. Throughfall and open canopy precipitation samples were collected in 2005 and 2006 using passive precipitation collectors from pristine sites located across...

  16. Aquatic ecosystem responses to Holocene climate change and biome development in boreal, central Asia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mackay, Anson W.; Bezrukova, Elena V.; Leng, Melanie J.; Meaney, Miriam; Nunes, Ana; Piotrowska, Natalia; Self, Angela; Shchetnikov, Alexander; Shilland, Ewan; Tarasov, Pavel; Wang, Luo; White, Dustin

    2012-05-01

    Boreal ecosystems are highly vulnerable to climate change, and severe ecological impacts in the near future are virtually certain to occur. We undertook a multiproxy study on an alpine lake (ESM-1) at the modern tree-line in boreal, southern Siberia. Steppe and tundra biomes were extensive in eastern Sayan landscapes during the early Holocene. Boreal forest quickly expanded by 9.1 ka BP, and dominated the landscape until c 0.7 ka BP, when the greatest period of compositional turnover occurred. At this time, alpine meadow landscape expanded and Picea obovata colonised new habitats along river valleys and lake shorelines, because of prevailing cool, moist conditions. During the early Holocene, chironomid assemblages were dominated by cold stenotherms. Diatoms for much of the Holocene were dominated by alkaliphilous, fragilarioid taxa, up until 0.2 ka BP, when epiphytic species expanded, indicative of increased habitat availability. C/N mass ratios ranged between 9.5 and 13.5 (11.1-15.8 C/N atomic ratios), indicative of algal communities dominating organic matter contributions to bottom sediments with small, persistent contributions from vascular plants. However, δ13C values increased steadily from -34.9‰ during the early Holocene (9.3 ka BP) to -24.8‰ by 0.6 ka BP. This large shift in magnitude may be due to a number of factors, including increasing within-lake productivity, increasing disequilibrium between the isotopic balance of the lake with the atmosphere as the lake became isotopically ‘mature’, and declining soil respiration linked to small, but distinct retreat in forest biomes. The influence of climatic variables on landscape vegetation was assessed using redundancy analysis (RDA), a linear, direct ordination technique. Changes in July insolation at 60 °N significantly explained over one-fifth of the variation in species composition, while changes in estimates of northern hemisphere temperature and ice-rafted debris events in the North Atlantic

  17. Antioxidant Potential of Bark Extracts from Boreal Forest Conifers.

    PubMed

    Legault, Jean; Girard-Lalancette, Karl; Dufour, Dominic; Pichette, André

    2013-07-11

    The bark of boreal forest conifers has been traditionally used by Native Americans to treat various ailments and diseases. Some of these diseases involve reactive oxygen species (ROS) that can be prevented by the consumption of antioxidants such as phenolic compounds that can be found in medicinal plants. In this study, ultrasonic assisted extraction has been performed under various solvent conditions (water:ethanol mixtures) on the bark of seven boreal forest conifers used by Native Americans including: Pinus strobus, Pinus resinosa, Pinus banksiana, Picea mariana, Picea glauca, Larix laricina, and Abies balsamea. The total phenolic content, as well as ORACFL potency and cellular antioxidant activity (IC50), were evaluated for all bark extracts, and compared with the standardized water extract of Pinus maritima bark (Pycnogenol), which showed clinical efficiency to prevent ROS deleterious effects. The best overall phenolic extraction yield and antioxidant potential was obtained with Picea glauca and Picea mariana. Interestingly, total phenolic content of these bark extracts was similar to Pycnogenol but their antioxidant activity were higher. Moreover, most of the extracts did not inhibit the growth of human skin fibroblasts, WS1. A significant correlation was found between the total phenolic content and the antioxidant activity for water extracts suggesting that these compounds are involved in the activity.

  18. Antioxidant Potential of Bark Extracts from Boreal Forest Conifers

    PubMed Central

    Legault, Jean; Girard-Lalancette, Karl; Dufour, Dominic; Pichette, André

    2013-01-01

    The bark of boreal forest conifers has been traditionally used by Native Americans to treat various ailments and diseases. Some of these diseases involve reactive oxygen species (ROS) that can be prevented by the consumption of antioxidants such as phenolic compounds that can be found in medicinal plants. In this study, ultrasonic assisted extraction has been performed under various solvent conditions (water:ethanol mixtures) on the bark of seven boreal forest conifers used by Native Americans including: Pinus strobus, Pinus resinosa, Pinus banksiana, Picea mariana, Picea glauca, Larix laricina, and Abies balsamea. The total phenolic content, as well as ORACFL potency and cellular antioxidant activity (IC50), were evaluated for all bark extracts, and compared with the standardized water extract of Pinus maritima bark (Pycnogenol), which showed clinical efficiency to prevent ROS deleterious effects. The best overall phenolic extraction yield and antioxidant potential was obtained with Picea glauca and Picea mariana. Interestingly, total phenolic content of these bark extracts was similar to Pycnogenol but their antioxidant activity were higher. Moreover, most of the extracts did not inhibit the growth of human skin fibroblasts, WS1. A significant correlation was found between the total phenolic content and the antioxidant activity for water extracts suggesting that these compounds are involved in the activity. PMID:26784337

  19. Global change and the boreal forest: thresholds, shifting states or gradual change?

    PubMed

    Chapin, F Stuart; Callaghan, Terry V; Bergeron, Yves; Fukuda, M; Johnstone, J F; Juday, G; Zimov, S A

    2004-08-01

    Changes in boreal climate of the magnitude projected for the 21st century have always caused vegetation changes large enough to be societally important. However, the rates and patterns of vegetation change are difficult to predict. We review evidence suggesting that these vegetation changes may be gradual at the northern forest limit or where seed dispersal limits species distribution. However, forest composition may be quite resilient to climate change in the central portions of a species range until some threshold is surpassed. At this point, changes can be rapid and unexpected, often causing a switch to very different ecosystem types. Many of these triggers for change are amenable to management, suggesting that our choice of policies in the coming decades will substantially influence the ecological and societal consequences of current climatic change.

  20. Uncertainty about future nitrogen availability dominates boreal forest growth projections

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mäkelä, Annikki; Kalliokoski, Tuomo; Peltoniemi, Mikko

    2015-04-01

    There is broad consensus among scientists that the capacity of forests in the boreal zone to take up carbon will increase as a result of climate change. However, boreal forests are strongly nitrogen limited. This may hamper the potential increase in GPP for forest productivity and carbon sequestration, but little is known about the impact of climate change on nitrogen availability in forests. Here we use OptiPipe, a model of optimal carbon and nitrogen co-allocation to analyse the role of nitrogen availability in growth limitation under climate change in Finland. We predict changes in metabolic rates related to the C balance using existing models and data, and we explore three alternative, plausible scenarios of N availability under climate change. Three climate scenarios based on three SRES emissions scenarios - B1 (low), A1B (moderate) and A2 (high) - are used for projecting changes of daily temperature, precipitation, vapour pressure deficit and solar radiation for periods 2011-2040, 2041-2070 and 2071-2100. We use a mean among 8 climate models. CO2 concentrations corresponding to the SRES scenarios come from (IPCC, 2007: Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis) The results will be presented across Finland on a 10 km x 10 km grid. The results indicate that NPP and woody growth will increase under climate change if N availability is also increasing. If N availability is limited, volume growth will to reduce, because maintenance costs (respiration and turnover) increase. If N availability increases relatively as much or more than C availability, reduced allocation requirements to fine roots will lead to more foliage with higher photosynthetic capacity, thus increasing woody volume growth disproportionately. These results are attributable to optimised carbon and nitrogen co-allocation. In order to reduce the uncertainty of growth predictions, a better understanding of the mechanisms related to N availability is needed.

  1. Comparing Effects of Climate Warming, Fire, and Timber Harvesting on a Boreal Forest Landscape in Northeastern China

    PubMed Central

    Li, Xiaona; He, Hong S.; Wu, Zhiwei; Liang, Yu; Schneiderman, Jeffrey E.

    2013-01-01

    Forest management under a changing climate requires assessing the effects of climate warming and disturbance on the composition, age structure, and spatial patterns of tree species. We investigated these effects on a boreal forest in northeastern China using a factorial experimental design and simulation modeling. We used a spatially explicit forest landscape model (LANDIS) to evaluate the effects of three independent variables: climate (current and expected future), fire regime (current and increased fire), and timber harvesting (no harvest and legal harvest). Simulations indicate that this forested landscape would be significantly impacted under a changing climate. Climate warming would significantly increase the abundance of most trees, especially broadleaf species (aspen, poplar, and willow). However, climate warming would have less impact on the abundance of conifers, diversity of forest age structure, and variation in spatial landscape structure than burning and harvesting. Burning was the predominant influence in the abundance of conifers except larch and the abundance of trees in mid-stage. Harvesting impacts were greatest for the abundance of larch and birch, and the abundance of trees during establishment stage (1–40 years), early stage (41–80 years) and old- growth stage (>180 years). Disturbance by timber harvesting and burning may significantly alter forest ecosystem dynamics by increasing forest fragmentation and decreasing forest diversity. Results from the simulations provide insight into the long term management of this boreal forest. PMID:23573209

  2. Spatially explicit fire-climate history of the boreal forest-tundra (Eastern Canada) over the last 2000 years.

    PubMed

    Payette, Serge; Filion, Louise; Delwaide, Ann

    2008-07-12

    Across the boreal forest, fire is the main disturbance factor and driver of ecosystem changes. In this study, we reconstructed a long-term, spatially explicit fire history of a forest-tundra region in northeastern Canada. We hypothesized that current occupation of similar topographic and edaphic sites by tundra and forest was the consequence of cumulative regression with time of forest cover due to compounding fire and climate disturbances. All fires were mapped and dated per 100 year intervals over the last 2,000 years using several fire dating techniques. Past fire occurrences and post-fire regeneration at the northern forest limit indicate 70% reduction of forest cover since 1800 yr BP and nearly complete cessation of forest regeneration since 900 yr BP. Regression of forest cover was particularly important between 1500s-1700s and possibly since 900 yr BP. Although fire frequency was very low over the last 100 years, each fire event was followed by drastic removal of spruce cover. Contrary to widespread belief of northward boreal forest expansion due to recent warming, lack of post-fire recovery during the last centuries, in comparison with active tree regeneration more than 1,000 years ago, indicates that the current climate does not favour such expansion.

  3. Comparing effects of climate warming, fire, and timber harvesting on a boreal forest landscape in northeastern China.

    PubMed

    Li, Xiaona; He, Hong S; Wu, Zhiwei; Liang, Yu; Schneiderman, Jeffrey E

    2013-01-01

    Forest management under a changing climate requires assessing the effects of climate warming and disturbance on the composition, age structure, and spatial patterns of tree species. We investigated these effects on a boreal forest in northeastern China using a factorial experimental design and simulation modeling. We used a spatially explicit forest landscape model (LANDIS) to evaluate the effects of three independent variables: climate (current and expected future), fire regime (current and increased fire), and timber harvesting (no harvest and legal harvest). Simulations indicate that this forested landscape would be significantly impacted under a changing climate. Climate warming would significantly increase the abundance of most trees, especially broadleaf species (aspen, poplar, and willow). However, climate warming would have less impact on the abundance of conifers, diversity of forest age structure, and variation in spatial landscape structure than burning and harvesting. Burning was the predominant influence in the abundance of conifers except larch and the abundance of trees in mid-stage. Harvesting impacts were greatest for the abundance of larch and birch, and the abundance of trees during establishment stage (1-40 years), early stage (41-80 years) and old- growth stage (>180 years). Disturbance by timber harvesting and burning may significantly alter forest ecosystem dynamics by increasing forest fragmentation and decreasing forest diversity. Results from the simulations provide insight into the long term management of this boreal forest.

  4. Priming Effects in Boreal Black Spruce Forest Soils: Quantitative Evaluation and Sensitivity Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Fan, Zhaosheng; Jastrow, Julie D.; Liang, Chao; Matamala, Roser; Miller, Raymond Michael

    2013-01-01

    Laboratory studies show that introduction of fresh and easily decomposable organic carbon (OC) into soil-water systems can stimulate the decomposition of soil OC (SOC) via priming effects in temperate forests, shrublands, grasslands, and agro-ecosystems. However, priming effects are still not well understood in the field setting for temperate ecosystems and virtually nothing is known about priming effects (e.g., existence, frequency, and magnitude) in boreal ecosystems. In this study, a coupled dissolved OC (DOC) transport and microbial biomass dynamics model was developed to simultaneously simulate co-occurring hydrological, physical, and biological processes and their interactions in soil pore-water systems. The developed model was then used to examine the importance of priming effects in two black spruce forest soils, with and without underlying permafrost. Our simulations showed that priming effects were strongly controlled by the frequency and intensity of DOC input, with greater priming effects associated with greater DOC inputs. Sensitivity analyses indicated that priming effects were most sensitive to variations in the quality of SOC, followed by variations in microbial biomass dynamics (i.e., microbial death and maintenance respiration), highlighting the urgent need to better discern these key parameters in future experiments and to consider these dynamics in existing ecosystem models. Water movement carries DOC to deep soil layers that have high SOC stocks in boreal soils. Thus, greater priming effects were predicted for the site with favorable water movement than for the site with limited water flow, suggesting that priming effects might be accelerated for sites where permafrost degradation leads to the formation of dry thermokarst. PMID:24205010

  5. Priming effects in boreal black spruce forest soils: quantitative evaluation and sensitivity analysis.

    PubMed

    Fan, Zhaosheng; Jastrow, Julie D; Liang, Chao; Matamala, Roser; Miller, Raymond Michael

    2013-01-01

    Laboratory studies show that introduction of fresh and easily decomposable organic carbon (OC) into soil-water systems can stimulate the decomposition of soil OC (SOC) via priming effects in temperate forests, shrublands, grasslands, and agro-ecosystems. However, priming effects are still not well understood in the field setting for temperate ecosystems and virtually nothing is known about priming effects (e.g., existence, frequency, and magnitude) in boreal ecosystems. In this study, a coupled dissolved OC (DOC) transport and microbial biomass dynamics model was developed to simultaneously simulate co-occurring hydrological, physical, and biological processes and their interactions in soil pore-water systems. The developed model was then used to examine the importance of priming effects in two black spruce forest soils, with and without underlying permafrost. Our simulations showed that priming effects were strongly controlled by the frequency and intensity of DOC input, with greater priming effects associated with greater DOC inputs. Sensitivity analyses indicated that priming effects were most sensitive to variations in the quality of SOC, followed by variations in microbial biomass dynamics (i.e., microbial death and maintenance respiration), highlighting the urgent need to better discern these key parameters in future experiments and to consider these dynamics in existing ecosystem models. Water movement carries DOC to deep soil layers that have high SOC stocks in boreal soils. Thus, greater priming effects were predicted for the site with favorable water movement than for the site with limited water flow, suggesting that priming effects might be accelerated for sites where permafrost degradation leads to the formation of dry thermokarst.

  6. Ectomycorrhizal-Dominated Boreal and Tropical Forests Have Distinct Fungal Communities, but Analogous Spatial Patterns across Soil Horizons

    PubMed Central

    McGuire, Krista L.; Allison, Steven D.; Fierer, Noah; Treseder, Kathleen K.

    2013-01-01

    Fungi regulate key nutrient cycling processes in many forest ecosystems, but their diversity and distribution within and across ecosystems are poorly understood. Here, we examine the spatial distribution of fungi across a boreal and tropical ecosystem, focusing on ectomycorrhizal fungi. We analyzed fungal community composition across litter (organic horizons) and underlying soil horizons (0–20 cm) using 454 pyrosequencing and clone library sequencing. In both forests, we found significant clustering of fungal communities by site and soil horizons with analogous patterns detected by both sequencing technologies. Free-living saprotrophic fungi dominated the recently-shed leaf litter and ectomycorrhizal fungi dominated the underlying soil horizons. This vertical pattern of fungal segregation has also been found in temperate and European boreal forests, suggesting that these results apply broadly to ectomycorrhizal-dominated systems, including tropical rain forests. Since ectomycorrhizal and free-living saprotrophic fungi have different influences on soil carbon and nitrogen dynamics, information on the spatial distribution of these functional groups will improve our understanding of forest nutrient cycling. PMID:23874569

  7. Ectomycorrhizal-dominated boreal and tropical forests have distinct fungal communities, but analogous spatial patterns across soil horizons.

    PubMed

    McGuire, Krista L; Allison, Steven D; Fierer, Noah; Treseder, Kathleen K

    2013-01-01

    Fungi regulate key nutrient cycling processes in many forest ecosystems, but their diversity and distribution within and across ecosystems are poorly understood. Here, we examine the spatial distribution of fungi across a boreal and tropical ecosystem, focusing on ectomycorrhizal fungi. We analyzed fungal community composition across litter (organic horizons) and underlying soil horizons (0-20 cm) using 454 pyrosequencing and clone library sequencing. In both forests, we found significant clustering of fungal communities by site and soil horizons with analogous patterns detected by both sequencing technologies. Free-living saprotrophic fungi dominated the recently-shed leaf litter and ectomycorrhizal fungi dominated the underlying soil horizons. This vertical pattern of fungal segregation has also been found in temperate and European boreal forests, suggesting that these results apply broadly to ectomycorrhizal-dominated systems, including tropical rain forests. Since ectomycorrhizal and free-living saprotrophic fungi have different influences on soil carbon and nitrogen dynamics, information on the spatial distribution of these functional groups will improve our understanding of forest nutrient cycling.

  8. Understanding COS Fluxes in a Boreal Forest: Towards COS-Based GPP Estimates.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, H.; Kooijmans, L.; Franchin, A.; Keskinen, H.; Levula, J.; Mammarella, I.; Maseyk, K. S.; Pihlatie, M.; Praplan, A. P.; Seibt, U.; Sun, W.; Vesala, T.

    2015-12-01

    Carbonyl Sulfide (COS) is a promising new tracer that can be used to partition the Net Ecosystem Exchange into gross primary production (GPP) and respiration. COS and CO2 vegetation fluxes are closely related as these gases share the same diffusion pathway into stomata, which makes COS a potentially powerful tracer for GPP. While vegetative uptake is the largest sink of COS, the environmental drivers are poorly understood, and soil fluxes represent an important but relatively unconstrained component. Therefore, the realization of the COS tracer method requires proper characterization of both soil and ecosystem fluxes. A campaign to provide better constrained soil and ecosystem COS flux data for boreal forests took place in the summer of 2015 at the SMEAR II site in Hyytiälä, Finland. Eddy covariance flux measurements were made above the forest canopy on an Aerodyne continuous-wave quantum cascade laser (QCL) system that is capable of measuring COS, CO2, CO and H2O. Soil COS fluxes were obtained using modified LI-COR LI-8100 chambers together with high accuracy concentration measurements from another Aerodyne QCL instrument. The same instrument alternately measured concentrations in and above the canopy on a cycle through 4 heights, which will be used to calculate ecosystem fluxes using the Radon-tracer method, providing ecosystem fluxes under low-turbulent conditions. We will compare ecosystem fluxes from both eddy covariance and profile measurements and show estimates of the fraction of ecosystem fluxes attributed to the soil component. With the better understanding of ecosystem and soil COS fluxes, as obtained with this dataset, we will be able to derive COS-based GPP estimates for the Hyytiälä site.

  9. Emissions of Black Carbon Aerosols from Alaskan Boreal Forest Wildfires

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mouteva, G.; Fahrni, S. M.; Rogers, B. M.; Wiggins, E. B.; Santos, G.; Czimczik, C. I.; Randerson, J. T.

    2014-12-01

    Boreal wildfires are a major source of carbonaceous aerosols. Emissions from wildfires in Alaska represent ~ 33% of all open biomass combustion emissions of black carbon (BC) in the United States. BC contributes to atmospheric warming and accelerates melting of ice and snow. With fire frequency and burned area projected to increase in boreal regions, BC has the potential to become an important positive feedback to climate change. Quantifying the emissions, constraining the sources and better understanding the transportation patterns of BC to the polar regions are therefore critical for constraining the strength of this feedback. We present results from direct measurements of BC from wildfires in Alaska during the summer of 2013 collected as a part of NASA's Carbon in Arctic Reservoirs Vulnerability Experiment (CARVE) campaign. Fine aerosol particulate matter (PM2.5) was collected at two locations: Caribou-Poker Creek Research Watershed and Delta Junction Agricultural and Forestry Experimental Site. Using a Sunset OCEC analyzer, we separated BC from organic carbon aerosols, measured concentrations and analyzed the radiocarbon (14C) content with accelerator mass spectrometry. We also analyzed the total carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) elemental and stable isotope composition of the bulk PM2.5 with EA-IRMS. We compared the temporal dynamics of BC concentrations and isotopic composition with active fire/thermal anomaly information from MODIS. Our results show that boreal forest fire emissions in interior Alaska increased BC concentrations by up to an order of magnitude above background levels. The mean Δ14C value of fire-emitted BC was 120‰ with a range of +99‰ to +149‰ after correcting for contributions from background BC. This range was in good agreement with measurements of the depth of burn in soil organic carbon layers from interior wildland fires, and Δ14C profiles. High fire periods also corresponded to elevated C:N ratios. The δ15N of the aerosols was

  10. Carbon sequestration is related to mycorrhizal fungal community shifts during long-term succession in boreal forests.

    PubMed

    Clemmensen, Karina E; Finlay, Roger D; Dahlberg, Anders; Stenlid, Jan; Wardle, David A; Lindahl, Björn D

    2015-03-01

    Boreal forest soils store a major proportion of the global terrestrial carbon (C) and below-ground inputs contribute as much as above-ground plant litter to the total C stored in the soil. A better understanding of the dynamics and drivers of root-associated fungal communities is essential to predict long-term soil C storage and climate feedbacks in northern ecosystems. We used 454-pyrosequencing to identify fungal communities across fine-scaled soil profiles in a 5000 yr fire-driven boreal forest chronosequence, with the aim of pinpointing shifts in fungal community composition that may underlie variation in below-ground C sequestration. In early successional-stage forests, higher abundance of cord-forming ectomycorrhizal fungi (such as Cortinarius and Suillus species) was linked to rapid turnover of mycelial biomass and necromass, efficient nitrogen (N) mobilization and low C sequestration. In late successional-stage forests, cord formers declined, while ericoid mycorrhizal ascomycetes continued to dominate, potentially facilitating long-term humus build-up through production of melanized hyphae that resist decomposition. Our results suggest that cord-forming ectomycorrhizal fungi and ericoid mycorrhizal fungi play opposing roles in below-ground C storage. We postulate that, by affecting turnover and decomposition of fungal tissues, mycorrhizal fungal identity and growth form are critical determinants of C and N sequestration in boreal forests.

  11. Atmospheric nitrous oxide uptake in boreal spruce forest soil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Siljanen, Henri; Welti, Nina; Heikkinen, Juha; Biasi, Christina; Martikainen, Pertti

    2017-04-01

    Nitrous oxide (N2O) uptake from the atmosphere has been found in forest soils but environmental factors controlling the uptake and its atmospheric impact are poorly known. We measured N2O fluxes over growing season in a boreal spruce forest having control plots and plots with long nitrogen fertilization history. Also methane (CH4) fluxes were measured to compare the atmospheric impact of N2O and CH4fluxes. Soil chemical and physical characteristics and climatic conditions were measured as background data. Nitrous oxide consumption and uptake mechanisms were measured in complementary laboratory incubation experiments using stable isotope approaches. Gene transcript numbers of nitrous oxide reductase (nosZ) I and II genes were quantified along the incubation with elevated N2O atmosphere. The spruce forests without fertilization history showed highest N2O uptake rates whereas pine forest had low emissions. Nitrous oxide uptake correlated positively with soil moisture, high soil silt content, and low temperature. Nitrous oxide uptake varied seasonally, being highest in spring and autumn when temperature was low and water content was high. The spruce forest was sink for CH4.Methane fluxes were decoupled from the N2O fluxes (i.e. when the N2O uptake was high the CH4 uptake was low). By using GWP approach, the cooling effect of N2O uptake was on average 30% of the cooling effect of CH4 uptake in spruce forest without fertilization. Anoxic conditions promoted higher N2O consumption rates in all soils. Gene transcription of nosZ-I genes were activated at beginning of the incubation. However, atypical/clade-II nosZ was not detected. These results suggests, that also N2O uptake rates have to be considered when accounting for the GHG budget of spruce forests.

  12. The Charcoal Component of Soil Organic Matter in the Boreal Forest of Western Quebec (Abitibi Region)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Preston, C. M.; Simard, M.; Kurz, W. A.; Rampley, G.; Wasylishen, R. E.; Bernard, G. M.; Bergeron, Y.; Lecomte, N.

    2009-05-01

    , whereas for plots from high-severity fires (including the oldest plots, 710 to 2355 y black spruce) charcoal was mainly concentrated at the organic-mineral interface or in mineral soil. Preliminary results show total charcoal ranging from approximately 50 to 5500 kg/ha, often with wide variation between monoliths, but generally in keeping with other studies using visual identification. Selected samples will be analysed for total C, N and ash and characterized by solid-state C-13 NMR. We are also exploring requirements, approaches and available data for integration of PyC into the Carbon Budget Model of the Canadian Forest Sector 3 (CBM-CFS3). Using this complete ecosystem carbon dynamics model and available data, we investigate the relative contribution of loss rates and oxidation in subsequent fires to the dynamics of BC in boreal forest ecosystem. Preliminary results based on a medium-severity fire every 125 years indicate a PyC pool in the order of 4000-7000 kg C/ha, constituting 5-10% of total soil C and thus reasonably consistent with field data for charcoal.

  13. Tracking changes of forest carbon density following mega-fires: comparison studies in the Yellowstone National Park and Boreal Forests of Northeast China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Feng; Huang, Chengquan; Huang, Chao; He, Hong; Zhu, Zhiliang

    2016-04-01

    Wildfires and post-fire management directly change C stored in biomass and soil pools, and can have indirect impacts on long-term C balance. Two mega fires occurred in the Yellowstone National Park (YNP) and the boreal forests of Northeast China in 1988 and 1987, respectively, making them ideal sites to examine and compare the effects of management and disturbances on regional carbon dynamics. In this study, we quantified effects of the 1988 Yellowstone fires on YNP carbon storages and fluxes. And then we tracked and modeled post-1988 forest carbon stocks change in YNP, and compared with simulation results of carbon stock changes in post-1987 fire boreal forests of Northeast China. Preliminary results show that in YNP, the mega fires in 1988 were responsible for an immediate loss of 900 g/m2 ecosystem average C density and it would take about a decade before the YNP ecosystem recover to the pre-fire average C condition. In boreal forests of Northeast China, fire reduced aboveground and belowground carbon by 230±60 g/m2 and 460±340 g/m2, respectively.

  14. Comprehensive radiative forcing assesment highlights trade-offs in climate mitigation potential of managed boreal forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kalliokoski, Tuomo; Berninger, Frank; Bäck, Jaana; Boy, Michael; Kuusinen, Nea; Mäkelä, Annikki; Matthies, Brent; Minkkinen, Kari; Mogensen, Ditte; Peltoniemi, Mikko; Sievänen, Risto; Zhou, Luxi; Vanhatalo, Anni; Valsta, Lauri; Nikinmaa, Eero

    2016-04-01

    Boreal forests have an important role in the mitigation of climate change. In this study we evaluated four key climate impacts of forest management: (1) carbon sequestration (in forest ecosystems and wood products), (2) surface albedo of forest area, (3) forest originating Secondary Organic Aerosols (SOA) and (4) avoided CO2-emissions from wood energy and product substitution. We calculated their net effect at both a single stand and regional level using Finland as a case study. We made analyses both in current climate up to a year 2050 and in the projected climate of year 2050. At the stand level, the carbon sequestration effect and avoided CO2 emissions due to substituted materials dominated in net RF in current climate. The warming effect of surface albedo of forest cover was lower or of same magnitude than cooling effect of SOAs. Together, the rarely considered SOAs and product substitution corresponded over 70% of the total cooling effect of forest cover. The cooling effect of net radiative forcing increased along the increasing site fertility. Although the carbon stocks of broadleaved trees were smaller than that of conifers their total radiative cooling effect was larger due to the integrated albedo and aerosol effects. In the projected climate of 2050, the radiative cooling of aerosols approached the level of forest carbon fixation. These results emphasize the need for holistic evaluation of climate impacts over simple carbon sequestration analysis to understand the role of forest management in climate change mitigation. Landscape level analyses emphasized the broad range of options to reach the cooling effect. The lowest harvest regime, 50% of current annual increment (CAI), yielded the largest cooling effect. Yet, harvests up to CAI produced only slightly less cooling RF if avoided emissions were considered. This result was highly sensitive to used substitution factors. Our result highlights that the combination of intensive harvests and the use of wood

  15. Management to conserve forest ecosystems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Robbins, C.S.; McComb, William C.

    1984-01-01

    Historically, management of forests for wildlife has emphasized creation of openings and provision for a maximum of edge habitats. Wildlife managers have believed, quite logically, that increased sunlight enhances productivity among plants and insects, resulting in greater use by game animals and other wildlife. Recent studies comparing breeding bird populations of extensive forests with those of isolated woodlots have shown that the smaller woodlots, especially those under 35 ha (about 85 acres), lack many species that are typical of the larger tracts. The missing species can be predicted, and basically are the neotropical migrants. These long-distance migrants share several characteristics that make them especially vulnerable to reproductive failure in situations where predation and cowbird parasitism are high: they are primarily single-brooded, open nesters that lay small clutches on or near the ground. Edge habitats and forest openings attract cowbirds and predators. The edge species of birds, which are mostly permanent residents or short-distance migrants, are well adapted to survive and reproduce in small isolated woodlands without the benefit of special habitat management. The obligate forest interior species, on the other hand, are decreasing in those parts of North America where extensive forests are being replaced by isolated woodlands. If we are to preserve ecosystems intact for the benefit of future generations, and maintain a viable gene pool for the scarcer species, we must think in terms of retaining large, unbroken tracts of forest and of limiting disturbance in the more remote portions of these tracts.

  16. Growing season and spatial variations of carbon fluxes of Arctic and boreal ecosystems in Alaska (USA).

    PubMed

    Ueyama, Masahito; Iwata, Hiroki; Harazono, Yoshinobu; Euskirchen, Eugénie S; Oechel, Walter C; Zona, Donatella

    2013-12-01

    To better understand the spatial and temporal dynamics of CO2 exchange between Arctic ecosystems and the atmosphere, we synthesized CO2 flux data, measured in eight Arctic tundra and five boreal ecosystems across Alaska (USA) and identified growing season and spatial variations of the fluxes and environmental controlling factors. For the period examined, all of the boreal and seven of the eight Arctic tundra ecosystems acted as CO2 sinks during the growing season. Seasonal patterns of the CO2 fluxes were mostly determined by air temperature, except ecosystem respiration (RE) of tundra. For the tundra ecosystems, the spatial variation of gross primary productivity (GPP) and net CO2 sink strength were explained by growing season length, whereas RE increased with growing degree days. For boreal ecosystems, the spatial variation of net CO2 sink strength was mostly determined by recovery of GPP from fire disturbance. Satellite-derived leaf area index (LAI) was a better index to explain the spatial variations of GPP and NEE of the ecosystems in Alaska than were the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) and enhanced vegetation index (EVI). Multiple regression models using growing degree days, growing season length, and satellite-derived LAI explained much of the spatial variation in GPP and net CO2 exchange among the tundra and boreal ecosystems. The high sensitivity of the sink strength to growing season length indicated that the tundra ecosystem could increase CO2 sink strength under expected future warming, whereas ecosystem compositions associated with fire disturbance could play a major role in carbon release from boreal ecosystems.

  17. Forest structure and downed woody debris in boreal, temperate, and tropical forest fragments.

    PubMed

    Gould, William A; González, Grizelle; Hudak, Andrew T; Hollingsworth, Teresa Nettleton; Hollingsworth, Jamie

    2008-12-01

    Forest fragmentation affects the heterogeneity of accumulated fuels by increasing the diversity of forest types and by increasing forest edges. This heterogeneity has implications in how we manage fuels, fire, and forests. Understanding the relative importance of fragmentation on woody biomass within a single climatic regime, and along climatic gradients, will improve our ability to manage forest fuels and predict fire behavior. In this study we assessed forest fuel characteristics in stands of differing moisture, i.e., dry and moist forests, structure, i.e., open canopy (typically younger) vs. closed canopy (typically older) stands, and size, i.e., small (10-14 ha), medium (33 to 60 ha), and large (100-240 ha) along a climatic gradient of boreal, temperate, and tropical forests. We measured duff, litter, fine and coarse woody debris, standing dead, and live biomass in a series of plots along a transect from outside the forest edge to the fragment interior. The goal was to determine how forest structure and fuel characteristics varied along this transect and whether this variation differed with temperature, moisture, structure, and fragment size. We found nonlinear relationships of coarse woody debris, fine woody debris, standing dead and live tree biomass with mean annual median temperature. Biomass for these variables was greatest in temperate sites. Forest floor fuels (duff and litter) had a linear relationship with temperature and biomass was greatest in boreal sites. In a five-way multivariate analysis of variance we found that temperature, moisture, and age/structure had significant effects on forest floor fuels, downed woody debris, and live tree biomass. Fragment size had an effect on forest floor fuels and live tree biomass. Distance from forest edge had significant effects for only a few subgroups sampled. With some exceptions edges were not distinguishable from interiors in terms of fuels.

  18. Long term effects of fire on the carbon balance in boreal forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berninger, Frank; Köster, Kaja; Pumpanen, Jukka

    2013-04-01

    and show that post-fire depression of microbial activities are important on the ecosystem and landscape level. Since fire frequencies in boreal forests will increase in many areas as the result of climate change, it will be important to better understand the effects of fire on the soil carbon turnover and to incorporate it into carbon cycle models.

  19. [Biogeneous carbon fluxes in the boreal forests of Central Siberia].

    PubMed

    Vedrova, É F

    2011-01-01

    The assessments of the carbon pool and rate of plant biomass production, phytodetritus destruction, new formations of humic matters, and removal of water-soluble decomposition products for the forest ecosystems of the forest tundra and the northern and southern parts of the Central Siberian taiga were given. The rates of the main processes (organic-matter production and degradation) were demonstrated to be balanced in the ecosystems of the forest tundra. The larch forests of the northern taiga serve as a stock for a C atmosphere, which are equivalent to 32-34% of net primary production (NPP). The secondary birch growth where the understory needle-leaved trees have been formed and the primary old-growth fir forests are characterized by the balance of the main carbon fluxes in the southern taiga. The birch forests where the understory trees are just being formed and the fir forests at the age of 50-90 years serve as a stock for an average of 26% of carbon extracted as dioxide to make NPP.

  20. Temperate and boreal forest mega-fires: characteristics and challenges

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stephens, Scott L.; Burrows, Neil; Buyantuyev, Alexander; Gray, Robert W.; Keane, Robert E.; Kubian, Rick; Liu, Shirong; Seijo, Francisco; Shu, Lifu; Tolhurst, Kevin G.; Van Wagtendonk, Jan W.

    2014-01-01

    Mega-fires are often defined according to their size and intensity but are more accurately described by their socioeconomic impacts. Three factors – climate change, fire exclusion, and antecedent disturbance, collectively referred to as the “mega-fire triangle” – likely contribute to today's mega-fires. Some characteristics of mega-fires may emulate historical fire regimes and can therefore sustain healthy fire-prone ecosystems, but other attributes decrease ecosystem resiliency. A good example of a program that seeks to mitigate mega-fires is located in Western Australia, where prescribed burning reduces wildfire intensity while conserving ecosystems. Crown-fire-adapted ecosystems are likely at higher risk of frequent mega-fires as a result of climate change, as compared with other ecosystems once subject to frequent less severe fires. Fire and forest managers should recognize that mega-fires will be a part of future wildland fire regimes and should develop strategies to reduce their undesired impacts.

  1. A boreal invasion in response to climate change? Range shifts and community effects in the borderland between forest and tundra.

    PubMed

    Elmhagen, Bodil; Kindberg, Jonas; Hellström, Peter; Angerbjörn, Anders

    2015-01-01

    It has been hypothesized that climate warming will allow southern species to advance north and invade northern ecosystems. We review the changes in the Swedish mammal and bird community in boreal forest and alpine tundra since the nineteenth century, as well as suggested drivers of change. Observed changes include (1) range expansion and increased abundance in southern birds, ungulates, and carnivores; (2) range contraction and decline in northern birds and carnivores; and (3) abundance decline or periodically disrupted dynamics in cyclic populations of small and medium-sized mammals and birds. The first warm spell, 1930-1960, stands out as a period of substantial faunal change. However, in addition to climate warming, suggested drivers of change include land use and other anthropogenic factors. We hypothesize all these drivers interacted, primarily favoring southern generalists. Future research should aim to distinguish between effects of climate and land-use change in boreal and tundra ecosystems.

  2. Long-term forest floor carbon dynamics after fire in upland boreal forests of western Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nalder, Ian A.; Wein, Ross W.

    1999-12-01

    We examined the long-term dynamics of upland boreal forest floors after disturbance by fire. We selected two important and contrasting upland tree species, Pinus banksiana (jack pine) and Populus tremuloides (trembling aspen), in three distinct climatic zones across the boreal forest of western Canada, and sampled 80 fire-originated stands divided into six chronosequences with ages ranging from 14 to 149 years. The forest floor was a large component of carbon storage. Averaged across ages and zones, it was 1.31 and 2.78 kg C m-2 for P. banksiana and P. tremuloides, respectively, compared with 4.03 and 5.56 kg C m-2 in aboveground trees. These data exclude decomposing coarse woody debris, which was a significant component of the forest floor (0.18/0.13 kg C m-2 ) and requires further study. The contributions from shrubs (0.035/0.151 kg C m-2), ground vegetation (0.019/0.026 kg C m-2), and moss-plus-lichen (0.179/0.004 kg C m-2) were relatively small. An analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) model showed that forest floor carbon was positively related to stand age, as well as being affected by species and climatic zone. Much of the variability was explained by species, and species-specific regression models showed that for P. tremuloides forest floor carbon was strongly related to stand age, mean annual temperature, and mean annual precipitation, and for P. banksiana, forest floor carbon was strongly related to an index of moss dominance. The regression models suggest that the forest floor carbon pool in upland forests of the western Canadian boreal will be sensitive to climate change, but this sensitivity would need to be tested with process-based models.

  3. Fire dynamics and implications for nitrogen cycling in boreal forests

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Harden, J.W.; Mack, M.; Veldhuis, H.; Gower, S.T.

    2003-01-01

    We used a dynamic, long-term mass balance approach to track cumulative carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) losses to fire in boreal Manitoba over the 6500 years since deglaciation. Estimated C losses to decomposition and fire, combined with measurements of N pools in mature and burned forest floors, suggest that loss of N by combustion has likely resulted in a long-term loss that exceeds the amount of N stored in soil today by 2 to 3 times. These estimates imply that biological N fixation rates could be as high as 5 to 10 times atmospheric deposition rates in boreal regions. At the site scale, the amount of N lost is due to N content of fuels, which varies by stand type and fire severity, which in turn vary with climate and fire dynamics. The interplay of fire frequency, fire severity, and N partitioning during regrowth are important for understanding rates and sustainability of nutrient and carbon cycling over millenia and over broad regions.

  4. Fire dynamics and implications for nitrogen cycling in boreal forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harden, Jennifer W.; Mack, Michelle; Veldhuis, Hugo; Gower, S. T.

    2003-02-01

    We used a dynamic, long-term mass balance approach to track cumulative carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) losses to fire in boreal Manitoba over the 6500 years since deglaciation. Estimated C losses to decomposition and fire, combined with measurements of N pools in mature and burned forest floors, suggest that loss of N by combustion has likely resulted in a long-term loss that exceeds the amount of N stored in soil today by 2 to 3 times. These estimates imply that biological N fixation rates could be as high as 5 to 10 times atmospheric deposition rates in boreal regions. At the site scale, the amount of N lost is due to N content of fuels, which varies by stand type and fire severity, which in turn vary with climate and fire dynamics. The interplay of fire frequency, fire severity, and N partitioning during regrowth are important for understanding rates and sustainability of nutrient and carbon cycling over millenia and over broad regions.

  5. Fire dynamics and implications for nitrogen cycling in boreal forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harden, Jennifer W.; Mack, Michelle; Veldhuis, Hugo; Gower, S. T.

    2002-02-01

    We used a dynamic, long-term mass balance approach to track cumulative carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) losses to fire in boreal Manitoba over the 6500 years since deglaciation. Estimated C losses to decomposition and fire, combined with measurements of N pools in mature and burned forest floors, suggest that loss of N by combustion has likely resulted in a long-term loss that exceeds the amount of N stored in soil today by 2 to 3 times. These estimates imply that biological N fixation rates could be as high as 5 to 10 times atmospheric deposition rates in boreal regions. At the site scale, the amount of N lost is due to N content of fuels, which varies by stand type and fire severity, which in turn vary with climate and fire dynamics. The interplay of fire frequency, fire severity, and N partitioning during regrowth are important for understanding rates and sustainability of nutrient and carbon cycling over millenia and over broad regions.

  6. Simulating effects of fire disturbance and climate change on boreal forest productivity and evapotranspiration.

    PubMed

    Kang, Sinkyu; Kimball, John S; Running, Steven W

    2006-06-01

    We used a terrestrial ecosystem process model, BIOME-BGC, to investigate historical climate change and fire disturbance effects on regional carbon and water budgets within a 357,500 km(2) portion of the Canadian boreal forest. Historical patterns of increasing atmospheric CO2, climate change, and regional fire activity were used as model drivers to evaluate the relative effects of these impacts to spatial patterns and temporal trends in forest net primary production (NPP) and evapotranspiration (ET). Historical trends of increasing atmospheric CO2 resulted in overall 13% and 5% increases in annual NPP and ET from 1994 to 1996, respectively. NPP was found to be relatively sensitive to changes in air temperature (T(a)), while ET was more sensitive to precipitation (P) change within the ranges of observed climate variability (e.g., +/-2 degrees C for T(a) and +/-20% for P). In addition, the potential effect of climate change related warming on NPP is exacerbated or offset depending on whether these changes are accompanied by respective decreases or increases in precipitation. Historical fire activity generally resulted in reductions of both NPP and ET, which consumed an average of approximately 6% of annual NPP from 1959 to 1996. Areas currently occupied by dry conifer forests were found to be subject to more frequent fire activity, which consumed approximately 8% of annual NPP. The results of this study show that the North American boreal ecosystem is sensitive to historical patterns of increasing atmospheric CO2, climate change and regional fire activity. The relative impacts of these disturbances on NPP and ET interact in complex ways and are spatially variable depending on regional land cover and climate gradients.

  7. Potential of a national monitoring program for forests to assess change in high-latitude ecosystems

    Treesearch

    Tara M. Barrett; Andrew N. Gray

    2011-01-01

    Broad-scale monitoring in Alaska has become of increasing interest due to uncertainty about the potential impacts of changing climate on high-latitude ecosystems. The Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) program is a national monitoring program for all public and private forestlands in the US, but the program is not currently implemented in the boreal region of Alaska....

  8. Assessment of boreal forest historical C dynamics in the Yukon River Basin: relative roles of warming and fire regime change.

    PubMed

    Yuan, F M; Yi, S H; McGuire, A D; Johnson, K D; Liang, J; Harden, J W; Kasischke, E S; Kurz, W A

    2012-12-01

    Carbon (C) dynamics of boreal forest ecosystems have substantial implications for efforts to mitigate the rise of atmospheric CO2 and may be substantially influenced by warming and changing wildfire regimes. In this study we applied a large-scale ecosystem model that included dynamics of organic soil horizons and soil organic matter characteristics of multiple pools to assess forest C stock changes of the Yukon River Basin (YRB) in Alaska, USA, and Canada from 1960 through 2006, a period characterized by substantial climate warming and increases in wildfire. The model was calibrated for major forests with data from long-term research sites and evaluated using a forest inventory database. The regional assessment indicates that forest vegetation C storage increased by 46 Tg C, but that total soil C storage did not change appreciably during this period. However, further analysis suggests that C has been continuously lost from the mineral soil horizon since warming began in the 1970s, but has increased in the amorphous organic soil horizon. Based on a factorial experiment, soil C stocks would have increased by 158 Tg C if the YRB had not undergone warming and changes in fire regime. The analysis also identified that warming and changes in fire regime were approximately equivalent in their effects on soil C storage, and interactions between these two suggests that the loss of organic horizon thickness associated with increases in wildfire made deeper soil C stocks more vulnerable to loss via decomposition. Subbasin analyses indicate that C stock changes were primarily sensitive to the fraction of burned forest area within each subbasin and that boreal forest ecosystems in the YRB are currently transitioning from being sinks to sources at -0.7% annual area burned. We conclude that it is important for international mitigation efforts focused on controlling atmospheric CO2 to consider how climate warming and changes in fire regime may concurrently affect the CO2 sink

  9. Assessment of boreal forest historical C dynamics in Yukon River Basin: relative roles of warming and fire regime change

    SciTech Connect

    Yuan, Fengming; Yi, Shuhua; McGuire, A. David; Johnson, Kristopher D; Liang, Jingjing; Harden, Jennifer; Kasischke, Eric S.; Kurz, Werner

    2012-01-01

    Carbon (C) dynamics of boreal forest ecosystems have substantial implications for efforts to mitigate the rise of atmospheric CO2 and may be substantially influenced by warming and changing wildfire regimes. In this study we applied a large-scale ecosystem model that included dynamics of organic soil horizons and soil organic matter characteristics of multiple pools to assess forest C stock changes of the Yukon River Basin (YRB) in Alaska, USA, and Canada from 1960 through 2006, a period characterized by substantial climate warming and increases in wildfire. The model was calibrated for major forests with data from long-term research sites and evaluated using a forest inventory database. The regional assessment indicates that forest vegetation C storage increased by 46 Tg C, but that total soil C storage did not change appreciably during this period. However, further analysis suggests that C has been continuously lost from the mineral soil horizon since warming began in the 1970s, but has increased in the amorphous organic soil horizon. Based on a factorial experiment, soil C stocks would have increased by 158 Tg C if the YRB had not undergone warming and changes in fire regime. The analysis also identified that warming and changes in fire regime were approximately equivalent in their effects on soil C storage, and interactions between these two suggests that the loss of organic horizon thickness associated with increases in wildfire made deeper soil C stocks more vulnerable to loss via decomposition. Subbasin analyses indicate that C stock changes were primarily sensitive to the fraction of burned forest area within each subbasin and that boreal forest ecosystems in the YRB are currently transitioning from being sinks to sources at ;0.7% annual area burned. We conclude that it is important for international mitigation efforts focused on controlling atmospheric CO2 to consider how climate warming and changes in fire regime may concurrently affect the CO2 sink

  10. Assessment of boreal forest historical C dynamics in the Yukon River Basin: relative roles of warming and fire regime change

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Yuan, F.M.; Yi, S.H.; McGuire, A.D.; Johnson, K.D.; Liang, J.; Harden, J.W.; Kasischke, E.S.; Kurz, W.A.

    2012-01-01

    Carbon (C) dynamics of boreal forest ecosystems have substantial implications for efforts to mitigate the rise of atmospheric CO2 and may be substantially influenced by warming and changing wildfire regimes. In this study we applied a large-scale ecosystem model that included dynamics of organic soil horizons and soil organic matter characteristics of multiple pools to assess forest C stock changes of the Yukon River Basin (YRB) in Alaska, USA, and Canada from 1960 through 2006, a period characterized by substantial climate warming and increases in wildfire. The model was calibrated for major forests with data from long-term research sites and evaluated using a forest inventory database. The regional assessment indicates that forest vegetation C storage increased by 46 Tg C, but that total soil C storage did not change appreciably during this period. However, further analysis suggests that C has been continuously lost from the mineral soil horizon since warming began in the 1970s, but has increased in the amorphous organic soil horizon. Based on a factorial experiment, soil C stocks would have increased by 158 Tg C if the YRB had not undergone warming and changes in fire regime. The analysis also identified that warming and changes in fire regime were approximately equivalent in their effects on soil C storage, and interactions between these two suggests that the loss of organic horizon thickness associated with increases in wildfire made deeper soil C stocks more vulnerable to loss via decomposition. Subbasin analyses indicate that C stock changes were primarily sensitive to the fraction of burned forest area within each subbasin and that boreal forest ecosystems in the YRB are currently transitioning from being sinks to sources at ∼0.7% annual area burned. We conclude that it is important for international mitigation efforts focused on controlling atmospheric CO2 to consider how climate warming and changes in fire regime may concurrently affect the CO2 sink

  11. Satellite chlorophyll fluorescence measurements reveal large-scale decoupling of photosynthesis and greenness dynamics in boreal evergreen forests.

    PubMed

    Walther, Sophia; Voigt, Maximilian; Thum, Tea; Gonsamo, Alemu; Zhang, Yongguang; Köhler, Philipp; Jung, Martin; Varlagin, Andrej; Guanter, Luis

    2016-09-01

    Mid-to-high latitude forests play an important role in the terrestrial carbon cycle, but the representation of photosynthesis in boreal forests by current modelling and observational methods is still challenging. In particular, the applicability of existing satellite-based proxies of greenness to indicate photosynthetic activity is hindered by small annual changes in green biomass of the often evergreen tree population and by the confounding effects of background materials such as snow. As an alternative, satellite measurements of sun-induced chlorophyll fluorescence (SIF) can be used as a direct proxy of photosynthetic activity. In this study, the start and end of the photosynthetically active season of the main boreal forests are analysed using spaceborne SIF measurements retrieved from the GOME-2 instrument and compared to that of green biomass, proxied by vegetation indices including the Enhanced Vegetation Index (EVI) derived from MODIS data. We find that photosynthesis and greenness show a similar seasonality in deciduous forests. In high-latitude evergreen needleleaf forests, however, the length of the photosynthetically active period indicated by SIF is up to 6 weeks longer than the green biomass changing period proxied by EVI, with SIF showing a start-of-season of approximately 1 month earlier than EVI. On average, the photosynthetic spring recovery as signalled by SIF occurs as soon as air temperatures exceed the freezing point (2-3 °C) and when the snow on the ground has not yet completely melted. These findings are supported by model data of gross primary production and a number of other studies which evaluated in situ observations of CO2 fluxes, meteorology and the physiological state of the needles. Our results demonstrate the sensitivity of space-based SIF measurements to light-use efficiency of boreal forests and their potential for an unbiased detection of photosynthetic activity even under the challenging conditions interposed by evergreen

  12. A model inter-comparison study of forest growth on two coastal and boreal forest landscapes in Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bernier, P. Y.; Wang, Z.; Grant, R. F.; Arain, A.; Chen, B.; Chen, J.; Coops, N.; Govind, A.; Guindon, L.; Hember, R.; Kurz, W. A.; Peng, C.; Price, D. T.; Stinson, G.; Sun, J.; Trofymow, J. A.

    2009-05-01

    Projection of carbon stocks in Canada is presently accomplished using CBM-CFS3, an inventory-based model. We have performed a comparison exercise among 6 process-based models of forest growth (Can-IBIS, INTEC, ECOSYS, 3PG, TRIPLEX, CN-CLASS) and CBM-CFS3 as part of an effort to better capture inter-annual climate variability in the carbon accounting of Canada's forests. Comparisons were made on multi-decadal simulations for a Pacific Coastal Douglas-fir forest (2500ha, Oyster River, British Columbia) and a Boreal Black Spruce forest (3825ha, Chibougamau, Quebec). Models were initiated using reconstructions of forest composition and biomass from 1920 (Oyster River, OR) and 1928 (Chibougamau, CH), followed by transition to current forest composition as derived from recent forest inventories (OR 1999, CH 1998). Forest management events and natural disturbances over the simulation period were provided as maps and disturbance impacts on a number of carbon pools were simulated using the same transfer coefficients parameters as CBM-CFS3. Simulations were conducted from 1920 to 2006 for OR, and from 1928 to 1998 for CH. For CH, final above-ground tree biomass in 1998 was also extracted from the independent forest inventory. The coastal OR area initially contained about four times more ecosystem C than the boreal CH area. CBM- CFS3 simulations suggest a decline in ecosystem carbon by about 200 Mg C ha-1, dominated by a loss of biomass and woody debris C, over the 86-year period in OR as the entire area transitioned from coastal old- growth to second growth conditions. In CH, a smaller proportion of the area was affected by management and the CBM-CFS3 estimated a small net increase in total ecosystem C of about 11 Mg C ha-1 over 70 years, almost all attributed to increased biomass. Changes in tree biomass at CH were 10% less than estimates derived by difference between successive inventories. The source of this small simulation bias is attributable to the underlying growth

  13. Decreases in Soil Moisture and Organic Matter Quality Suppress Microbial Decomposition Following a Boreal Forest Fire

    SciTech Connect

    Holden, Sandra R.; Berhe, Asmeret A.; Treseder, Kathleen K.

    2015-08-01

    Climate warming is projected to increase the frequency and severity of wildfires in boreal forests, and increased wildfire activity may alter the large soil carbon (C) stocks in boreal forests. Changes in boreal soil C stocks that result from increased wildfire activity will be regulated in part by the response of microbial decomposition to fire, but post-fire changes in microbial decomposition are poorly understood. Here, we investigate the response of microbial decomposition to a boreal forest fire in interior Alaska and test the mechanisms that control post-fire changes in microbial decomposition. We used a reciprocal transplant between a recently burned boreal forest stand and a late successional boreal forest stand to test how post-fire changes in abiotic conditions, soil organic matter (SOM) composition, and soil microbial communities influence microbial decomposition. We found that SOM decomposing at the burned site lost 30.9% less mass over two years than SOM decomposing at the unburned site, indicating that post-fire changes in abiotic conditions suppress microbial decomposition. Our results suggest that moisture availability is one abiotic factor that constrains microbial decomposition in recently burned forests. In addition, we observed that burned SOM decomposed more slowly than unburned SOM, but the exact nature of SOM changes in the recently burned stand are unclear. Finally, we found no evidence that post-fire changes in soil microbial community composition significantly affect decomposition. Taken together, our study has demonstrated that boreal forest fires can suppress microbial decomposition due to post-fire changes in abiotic factors and the composition of SOM. Models that predict the consequences of increased wildfires for C storage in boreal forests may increase their predictive power by incorporating the observed negative response of microbial decomposition to boreal wildfires.

  14. Decadal and long-term boreal soil carbon and nitrogen sequestration rates across a variety of ecosystems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Manies, Kristen L.; Harden, Jennifer W.; Fuller, Christopher C.; Turetsky, Merritt

    2016-01-01

    Boreal soils play a critical role in the global carbon (C) cycle; therefore, it is important to understand the mechanisms that control soil C accumulation and loss for this region. Examining C & nitrogen (N) accumulation rates over decades to centuries may provide additional understanding of the dominant mechanisms for their storage, which can be masked by seasonal and interannual variability when investigated over the short term. We examined longer-term accumulation rates, using 210Pb and 14C to date soil layers, for a wide variety of boreal ecosystems: a black spruce forest, a shrub ecosystem, a tussock grass ecosystem, a sedge-dominated ecosystem, and a rich fen. All ecosystems had similar decadal C accumulation rates, averaging 84 ± 42 gC m−2 yr−1. Long-term (century) C accumulation rates were slower than decadal rates, averaging 14 ± 5 gC m−2 yr−1 for all ecosystems except the rich fen, for which the long-term C accumulation rates was more similar to decadal rates (44 ± 5 and 76 ± 9 gC m−2 yr−1, respectively). The rich fen also had the highest long-term N accumulation rates (2.7 gN m−2 yr−1). The lowest N accumulation rate, on both a decadal and long-term basis, was found in the black spruce forest (0.2 and 1.4 gN m−2 yr−1, respectively). Our results suggest that the controls on long-term C and N cycling at the rich fen is fundamentally different from the other ecosystems, likely due to differences in the predominant drivers of nutrient cycling (oxygen availability, for C) and reduced amounts of disturbance by fire (for C and N). This result implies that most shifts in ecosystem vegetation across the boreal region, driven by either climate or succession, will not significantly impact regional C or N dynamics over years to decades. However, ecosystem transitions to or from a rich fen will promote significant shifts in soil C and N storage.

  15. Decadal and long-term boreal soil carbon and nitrogen sequestration rates across a variety of ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manies, Kristen L.; Harden, Jennifer W.; Fuller, Christopher C.; Turetsky, Merritt R.

    2016-08-01

    Boreal soils play a critical role in the global carbon (C) cycle; therefore, it is important to understand the mechanisms that control soil C accumulation and loss for this region. Examining C & nitrogen (N) accumulation rates over decades to centuries may provide additional understanding of the dominant mechanisms for their storage, which can be masked by seasonal and interannual variability when investigated over the short term. We examined longer-term accumulation rates, using 210Pb and 14C to date soil layers, for a wide variety of boreal ecosystems: a black spruce forest, a shrub ecosystem, a tussock grass ecosystem, a sedge-dominated ecosystem, and a rich fen. All ecosystems had similar decadal C accumulation rates, averaging 84 ± 42 gC m-2 yr-1. Long-term (century) C accumulation rates were slower than decadal rates, averaging 14 ± 5 gC m-2 yr-1 for all ecosystems except the rich fen, for which the long-term C accumulation rates was more similar to decadal rates (44 ± 5 and 76 ± 9 gC m-2 yr-1, respectively). The rich fen also had the highest long-term N accumulation rates (2.7 gN m-2 yr-1). The lowest N accumulation rate, on both a decadal and long-term basis, was found in the black spruce forest (0.2 and 1.4 gN m-2 yr-1, respectively). Our results suggest that the controls on long-term C and N cycling at the rich fen is fundamentally different from the other ecosystems, likely due to differences in the predominant drivers of nutrient cycling (oxygen availability, for C) and reduced amounts of disturbance by fire (for C and N). This result implies that most shifts in ecosystem vegetation across the boreal region, driven by either climate or succession, will not significantly impact regional C or N dynamics over years to decades. However, ecosystem transitions to or from a rich fen will promote significant shifts in soil C and N storage.

  16. Boreal ditched forest and peatland are more vulnerable to forest fire than unditched areas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Köhler, Stephan J.; Granath, Gustav; Landahl, Anna; Fölster, Jens

    2016-04-01

    During summer of 2014 the largest wildfire in Swedish modern history occurred. The fire was ignited in a forest close to the Swedish town Sala and incinerated a total of 14 000 ha. The frequency of wildfires is expected to increase, due to effects of climate change such as increased temperature and decreased precipitation during the summer months. Wildfires can have a considerable impact on aquatic ecosystems and previous studies of wildfires have shown elevated concentrations of nutrients, cat- and anions. The area of the fire mainly consists of forestland, peatland and lakes and has been affected by acidification and intensive forestry. To assess the fire severity and the effects on the water chemistry, the fire severity were analyzed and classified using aerial phtographs and high resolution LIDAR data. The analysis indicated that increased fire intensity caused increased fire severity and that drained forested areas were more vulnerable to fire than undrained peatland. Measurements of water chemistry were conducted at nine streams and ten lakes inside the affected area. At two sites sensors for multiple parameters were deployed. During the initial three months of the post-fire period large peaks of ammonia-N and sulphate were observed in the streams and in a majority of the lakes while DOC was suppressed. In one stream Gärsjöbäcken the median concentrations of ammonia-N were 79 times higher after the fire. Due to nitrification the elevated concentrations of ammonia-N-nitrogen caused elevated concentrations of nitrate-nitrogen. The initial peak of sulphate caused a drop in ANC but after the peak had past ANC increased due to elevated concentrations of base cations. Correlation analysis of fire severity and water chemistry indicated that the maximum concentrations of ammonia-N increased with severely burned canopies in drained forested peatlands and in scorched open peatland. In a future climate with increased dry spells extensive ditching operations in

  17. Acid Precipitation and the Forest Ecosystem

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dochinger, Leon S.; Seliga, Thomas A.

    1975-01-01

    The First International Symposium on Acid Precipitation and the Forest Ecosystem dealt with the potential magnitude of the global effects of acid precipitation on aquatic ecosystems, forest soils, and forest vegetation. The problem is discussed in the light of atmospheric chemistry, transport, and precipitation. (Author/BT)

  18. Acid Precipitation and the Forest Ecosystem

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dochinger, Leon S.; Seliga, Thomas A.

    1975-01-01

    The First International Symposium on Acid Precipitation and the Forest Ecosystem dealt with the potential magnitude of the global effects of acid precipitation on aquatic ecosystems, forest soils, and forest vegetation. The problem is discussed in the light of atmospheric chemistry, transport, and precipitation. (Author/BT)

  19. Forest Ecosystem Services As Production Inputs

    Treesearch

    Subhrendu Pattanayak; David T. Butry

    2003-01-01

    Are we cutting down tropical forests too rapidly and too extensively? If so, why? Answers to both questions are obscured in some ways by insufficient and unreliable data on the economic worth of forest ecosystem services. It is clear, however, that rapid, excessive cutting of forests can irreversibly and substantively impair ecosystem functions, thereby endangering the...

  20. An Integrated Approach to Forest Ecosystem Services

    Treesearch

    José Joaquin Campos; Francisco Alpizar; Bastiaan Louman; John A. Parrotta

    2005-01-01

    Forest ecosystem services (FES) are fundamental for the Earth’s life support systems. This chapter discusses the different services provided by forest ecosystems and the effects that land use and forest management practices have on their provision. It also discusses the role of markets in providing an enabling environment for a sustainable and equitable provision of...

  1. Patterns of canopy and surface layer consumption in a boreal forest fire from repeat airborne lidar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alonzo, Michael; Morton, Douglas C.; Cook, Bruce D.; Andersen, Hans-Erik; Babcock, Chad; Pattison, Robert

    2017-05-01

    Fire in the boreal region is the dominant agent of forest disturbance with direct impacts on ecosystem structure, carbon cycling, and global climate. Global and biome-scale impacts are mediated by burn severity, measured as loss of forest canopy and consumption of the soil organic layer. To date, knowledge of the spatial variability in burn severity has been limited by sparse field sampling and moderate resolution satellite data. Here, we used pre- and post-fire airborne lidar data to directly estimate changes in canopy vertical structure and surface elevation for a 2005 boreal forest fire on Alaska’s Kenai Peninsula. We found that both canopy and surface losses were strongly linked to pre-fire species composition and exhibited important fine-scale spatial variability at sub-30 m resolution. The fractional reduction in canopy volume ranged from 0.61 in lowland black spruce stands to 0.27 in mixed white spruce and broadleaf forest. Residual structure largely reflects standing dead trees, highlighting the influence of pre-fire forest structure on delayed carbon losses from aboveground biomass, post-fire albedo, and variability in understory light environments. Median loss of surface elevation was highest in lowland black spruce stands (0.18 m) but much lower in mixed stands (0.02 m), consistent with differences in pre-fire organic layer accumulation. Spatially continuous depth-of-burn estimates from repeat lidar measurements provide novel information to constrain carbon emissions from the surface organic layer and may inform related research on post-fire successional trajectories. Spectral measures of burn severity from Landsat were correlated with canopy (r = 0.76) and surface (r = -0.71) removal in black spruce stands but captured less of the spatial variability in fire effects for mixed stands (canopy r = 0.56, surface r = -0.26), underscoring the difficulty in capturing fire effects in heterogeneous boreal forest landscapes using proxy measures of burn

  2. Preliminary Assessment of JERS-1 SAR to Discriminating Boreal Landscape Features for the Boreal Forest Mapping Project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    McDonald, Kyle; Williams, Cynthia; Podest, Erika; Chapman, Bruce

    1999-01-01

    This paper presents an overview of the JERS-1 North American Boreal Forest Mapping Project and a preliminary assessment of JERS-1 SAR imagery for application to discriminating features applicable to boreal landscape processes. The present focus of the JERS-1 North American Boreal Forest Mapping Project is the production of continental scale wintertime and summertime SAR mosaics of the North American boreal forest for distribution to the science community. As part of this effort, JERS-1 imagery has been collected over much of Alaska and Canada during the 1997-98 winter and 1998 summer seasons. To complete the mosaics, these data will be augmented with data collected during previous years. These data will be made available to the scientific community via CD ROM containing these and similar data sets compiled from companion studies of Asia and Europe. Regional landscape classification with SAR is important for the baseline information it will provide about distribution of woodlands, positions of treeline, current forest biomass, distribution of wetlands, and extent of major rivercourses. As well as setting the stage for longer term change detection, comparisons across several years provides additional baseline information about short-term landscape change. Rapid changes, including those driven by fire, permafrost heat balance, flooding, and insect outbreaks can dominate boreal systems. We examine JERS-1 imagery covering selected sites in Alaska and Canada to assess quality and applicability to such relevant ecological and hydrological issues. The data are generally of high quality and illustrate many potential applications. A texture-based classification scheme is applied to selected regions to assess the applicability of these data for distinguishing distribution of such landcover types as wetland, tundra, woodland and forested landscapes.

  3. Preliminary Assessment of JERS-1 SAR to Discriminating Boreal Landscape Features for the Boreal Forest Mapping Project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    McDonald, Kyle; Williams, Cynthia; Podest, Erika; Chapman, Bruce

    1999-01-01

    This paper presents an overview of the JERS-1 North American Boreal Forest Mapping Project and a preliminary assessment of JERS-1 SAR imagery for application to discriminating features applicable to boreal landscape processes. The present focus of the JERS-1 North American Boreal Forest Mapping Project is the production of continental scale wintertime and summertime SAR mosaics of the North American boreal forest for distribution to the science community. As part of this effort, JERS-1 imagery has been collected over much of Alaska and Canada during the 1997-98 winter and 1998 summer seasons. To complete the mosaics, these data will be augmented with data collected during previous years. These data will be made available to the scientific community via CD ROM containing these and similar data sets compiled from companion studies of Asia and Europe. Regional landscape classification with SAR is important for the baseline information it will provide about distribution of woodlands, positions of treeline, current forest biomass, distribution of wetlands, and extent of major rivercourses. As well as setting the stage for longer term change detection, comparisons across several years provides additional baseline information about short-term landscape change. Rapid changes, including those driven by fire, permafrost heat balance, flooding, and insect outbreaks can dominate boreal systems. We examine JERS-1 imagery covering selected sites in Alaska and Canada to assess quality and applicability to such relevant ecological and hydrological issues. The data are generally of high quality and illustrate many potential applications. A texture-based classification scheme is applied to selected regions to assess the applicability of these data for distinguishing distribution of such landcover types as wetland, tundra, woodland and forested landscapes.

  4. Monitoring Boreal Forest Owls in Ontario using tape playback surveys with volunteers

    Treesearch

    Charles M. Francis; Michael S. W. Bradstreet

    1997-01-01

    Long Point Bird Observatory ran pilot surveys in 1995 and 1996 to monitor boreal forest owls in Ontario using roadside surveys with tape playback of calls. A minimum of 791 owls on 84 routes in 1995, and 392 owls on 88 routes in 1996; nine different species were detected. Playback improved the response rate for Barred (Strix varia), Boreal (...

  5. Patterns of NPP, GPP, Respiration and NEP During Boreal Forest Succession

    SciTech Connect

    Goulden, Michael L.; McMillan, Andrew; Winston, Greg; Rocha, Adrian; Manies, Kristen; Harden, Jennifer W.; Bond-Lamberty, Benjamin

    2010-12-15

    We deployed a mesonet of year-round eddy covariance towers in boreal forest stands that last burned in ~1850, ~1930, 1964, 1981, 1989, 1998, and 2003 to understand how CO2 exchange changes during secondary succession.The strategy of using multiple methods, including biometry and micrometeorology, worked well. In particular, the three independent measures of NEP during succession gave similar results. A stratified and tiered approach to deploying eddy covariance systems that combines many lightweight and portable towers with a few permanent ones is likely to maximize the science return for a fixed investment. The existing conceptual models did a good job of capturing the dominant patterns of NPP, GPP, Respiration and NEP during succession. The initial loss of carbon following disturbance was neither as protracted nor large as predicted. This muted response reflects both the rapid regrowth of vegetation following fire and the prevalence of standing coarse woody debris following the fire, which is thought to decay slowly. In general, the patterns of forest recovery from disturbance should be expected to vary as a function of climate, ecosystem type and disturbance type. The NPP decline at the older stands appears related to increased Rauto rather than decreased GPP. The increase in Rauto in the older stands does not appear to be caused by accelerated maintenance respiration with increased biomass, and more likely involves increased allocation to fine root turnover, root metabolism, alternative forms of respiration, mycorrhizal relationships, or root exudates, possibly associated with progressive nutrient limitation. Several studies have now described a similar pattern of NEP following boreal fire, with 10-to-15 years of modest carbon loss followed by 50-to-100 years of modest carbon gain. This trend has been sufficiently replicated and evaluated using independent techniques that it can be used to quantify the likely effects of changes in boreal fire frequency and

  6. CO2 balance of boreal, temperate, and tropical forests derived from a global database

    SciTech Connect

    Luyssaert, S.; Inglima, I.; Jung, M.; Reichstein, Markus; Papale, D.; Piao, S.; Schulze, E.-D.; Wingate, L.; Matteucci, G.; Aubinet, M.; Beer, C.; Bernhofer, C.; Black, K. G.; Bonal, D.; Chambers, J.; Ciais, P.; Davis, Ken J.; Delucia, Evan H.; Dolman, A. J.; Don, A.; Gielen, B.; Grace, John; Granier, A.; Grelle, A.; Griffis, T.; Grunwald, T.; Guidolotti, G.; Hanson, P. J.; Harding, R.; Hollinger, D.; Kolari, P.; Kruijt, B.; Kutsch, W.; Lagergren, F.; Laurila, T.; Law, B.; Le Maire, G.; Lindroth, A.; Magnani, F.; Marek, M.; Mateus, J.; Migliavacca, M.; Mission, L.; Montagnani, L.; Moncrief, J.; Moors, E.; Munger, J. W.; Nikinmaa, E.; Loustau, D.; Pita, G.; Rebmann, C.; Richardson, A. D.; Roupsard, O.; Saigusa, N.; Sanz, M. J.; Seufert, G.; Sorensen, L.; Tang, J.; Valentini, R.; Vesala, T.; Janssens, I. A.

    2007-01-01

    Forests sequester large amounts of atmospheric carbon. However, considerable uncertainties remain regarding the fate of this carbon over both short and long timescales. Relevant data to address these uncertainties have been and are being collected at many sites around the world, but synthesis of these data is still sparse. To facilitate synthesis activities, we have assembled a comprehensive global database for forest ecosystems, which includes carbon budget variables (fluxes and stocks), ecosystem traits (e.g. leaf area index, age) as well as ancillary site information such as management regime, climate and soil characteristics. This can be used to: quantify global, regional to biome-specific carbon-budgets, to re-examine established relationships, test emerging hypotheses about ecosystem functioning (e.g. a constant NEP to GPP), and provide benchmarks for model evaluations. Our synthesis highlighted that globally, gross primary production of forests benefited from higher temperatures and precipitation whereas net primary production saturated beyond a threshold of 1500 mm precipitation or a mean annual temperature of 10 C. The global pattern in NEP was found insensitive to climate and appears to be mainly determined by non-climatic conditions such as successional stage, management, site history and site disturbance. At the biome level, only the carbon fluxes in temperate humid evergreen and temperate humid deciduous forests were sufficiently robust. All other biomes still need further study to reduce uncertainties in their carbon balance. Carbon budgets of boreal semi-arid and tropical semi-arid forests would benefit most from additional data inputs. Closing the CO2-balances of specific biomes required the introduction of closure terms. These closure terms were substantial for all biomes and suggested that to better close carbon balances, more data are needed especially on respiratory processes, advection and on non-CO2 carbon fluxes.

  7. The impact of boreal deciduous and evergreen forests on atmospheric CO2 seasonality

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Welp, L.; Graven, H. D.; Keeling, R. F.; Bi, J.

    2015-12-01

    The seasonal cycle of atmospheric CO2 is largely controlled by the terrestrial biosphere. It is well known that the seasonal amplitude of net ecosystem productivity (NEP) is the largest in the far north, where forest productivity is compressed into a short growing season. Since 1960, the seasonal amplitude of atmospheric CO2 north of 45N has increased by 35-55%. The increase in the seasonal amplitude is a difficult benchmark for coupled climate-carbon models to replicate. In fact, the models vary widely in their mean seasonal cycle representation. The boreal region has a strong influence on CO2 seasonality at Barrow. Deciduous and evergreen plant functional types (PFTs) have different patterns of NEP. We identified four pairs of nearby deciduous and evergreen forest PFTs with eddy covariance measurements. Evergreen forests show an early peak in NEP in May-June, while deciduous forests have a larger peak in NEP later in June-July. The influence of each PFT on the seasonal cycle at Barrow was computed from atmospheric transport results. We normalized the amplitude influence by the growing season NEP of the tower-based PFT flux and found that deciduous forests have 1.4 to 1.8 times more influence (per unit of growing season NEP) at Barrow than evergreen PFT. This diagnosis depends on the timing of the sharp seasonal draw-down at Barrow, which occurs too late to be explained by evergreen forests. The cycle at Barrow therefore appears to be strongly influenced by deciduous PFT, despite the dominance of evergreen PFTs in boreal forests. This paradoxical conclusion is also reached when examining the seasonality of land surface fluxes calculated using atmospheric inverse methods. We examine how these different PFTs, and possible trends in relative abundance, affect the seasonality of atmosphere CO2 using FluxNet data and atmospheric transport modelling. Our results highlight the importance of parameterizing multiple PFTs or individual species within grid cells in models in

  8. [Forest ecosystems and Ebola virus].

    PubMed

    Morvan, J M; Nakouné, E; Deubel, V; Colyn, M

    2000-07-01

    Despite data collected since the emergence of the Ebola virus in 1976, its natural transmission cycle and especially the nature of its reservoirs and means of transmission are still an enigma. This means that effective epidemiological surveillance and prevention are difficult to implement. The location of outbreak areas has suggested that the reservoir and the transmission cycle of the Ebola virus are closely linked to the rainforest ecosystem. The fact that outbreaks seldom occur suggests the presence of a rare animal reservoir having few contacts with man. Paradoxically, various serological investigations have shown a high prevalence in human beings, especially in forest areas of the Central African Republic (CAR), with no pathology associated. This would appear to suggest a circulation of both pathogenic and non-pathogenic strains as well as frequent contacts with man. The ecological changes resulting from human activity (agriculture and logging) account for the modification of the fauna (movement of rainforest fauna, introduction of savannah species) and could explain a multiplication of contacts. Likewise, it is interesting to note that the centre of outbreaks has always been in areas bordering on forests (ecotone foreset-savannah in the Democratic Republic of Congo, savannah in Sudan). All these considerations have led us to establish a permanent "watch" in areas bordering on forests in the CAR, involving a multidisciplinary approach to the virological study (strain isolation, molecular biology) of the biodiversity of small terrestrial mammals. The results of a study conducted on 947 small mammals has shown for the first time the presence of the Ebola virus genome in two species of rodents and one species of shrew living in forest border areas. These animals must be considered as intermediary hosts and research should now focus on reservoirs in the ecosystem of forest border areas where contacts with man are likely to be more frequent.

  9. Effects of climate and fire on short-term vegetation recovery in the boreal larch forests of Northeastern China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Zhihua

    2016-11-01

    Understanding the influence of climate variability and fire characteristics in shaping postfire vegetation recovery will help to predict future ecosystem trajectories in boreal forests. In this study, I asked: (1) which remotely-sensed vegetation index (VI) is a good proxy for vegetation recovery? and (2) what are the relative influences of climate and fire in controlling postfire vegetation recovery in a Siberian larch forest, a globally important but poorly understood ecosystem type? Analysis showed that the shortwave infrared (SWIR) VI is a good indicator of postfire vegetation recovery in boreal larch forests. A boosted regression tree analysis showed that postfire recovery was collectively controlled by processes that controlled seed availability, as well as by site conditions and climate variability. Fire severity and its spatial variability played a dominant role in determining vegetation recovery, indicating seed availability as the primary mechanism affecting postfire forest resilience. Environmental and immediate postfire climatic conditions appear to be less important, but interact strongly with fire severity to influence postfire recovery. If future warming and fire regimes manifest as expected in this region, seed limitation and climate-induced regeneration failure will become more prevalent and severe, which may cause forests to shift to alternative stable states.

  10. Effects of climate and fire on short-term vegetation recovery in the boreal larch forests of Northeastern China.

    PubMed

    Liu, Zhihua

    2016-11-18

    Understanding the influence of climate variability and fire characteristics in shaping postfire vegetation recovery will help to predict future ecosystem trajectories in boreal forests. In this study, I asked: (1) which remotely-sensed vegetation index (VI) is a good proxy for vegetation recovery? and (2) what are the relative influences of climate and fire in controlling postfire vegetation recovery in a Siberian larch forest, a globally important but poorly understood ecosystem type? Analysis showed that the shortwave infrared (SWIR) VI is a good indicator of postfire vegetation recovery in boreal larch forests. A boosted regression tree analysis showed that postfire recovery was collectively controlled by processes that controlled seed availability, as well as by site conditions and climate variability. Fire severity and its spatial variability played a dominant role in determining vegetation recovery, indicating seed availability as the primary mechanism affecting postfire forest resilience. Environmental and immediate postfire climatic conditions appear to be less important, but interact strongly with fire severity to influence postfire recovery. If future warming and fire regimes manifest as expected in this region, seed limitation and climate-induced regeneration failure will become more prevalent and severe, which may cause forests to shift to alternative stable states.

  11. Effects of climate and fire on short-term vegetation recovery in the boreal larch forests of Northeastern China

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Zhihua

    2016-01-01

    Understanding the influence of climate variability and fire characteristics in shaping postfire vegetation recovery will help to predict future ecosystem trajectories in boreal forests. In this study, I asked: (1) which remotely-sensed vegetation index (VI) is a good proxy for vegetation recovery? and (2) what are the relative influences of climate and fire in controlling postfire vegetation recovery in a Siberian larch forest, a globally important but poorly understood ecosystem type? Analysis showed that the shortwave infrared (SWIR) VI is a good indicator of postfire vegetation recovery in boreal larch forests. A boosted regression tree analysis showed that postfire recovery was collectively controlled by processes that controlled seed availability, as well as by site conditions and climate variability. Fire severity and its spatial variability played a dominant role in determining vegetation recovery, indicating seed availability as the primary mechanism affecting postfire forest resilience. Environmental and immediate postfire climatic conditions appear to be less important, but interact strongly with fire severity to influence postfire recovery. If future warming and fire regimes manifest as expected in this region, seed limitation and climate-induced regeneration failure will become more prevalent and severe, which may cause forests to shift to alternative stable states. PMID:27857204

  12. Forest fire effects on mercury deposition in the boreal forest

    Treesearch

    Emma L. Witt; Randall K. Kolka; Edward A. Nater; Trent R. Wickman

    2009-01-01

    The objective of this study was to determine how forest fire effects Hg deposition to nearby landscapes impacted by smoke plumes. Hg concentrations and deposition were hypothesized to increase in throughfall and open precipitation after fire, and canopy type was hypothesized to influence the magnitude of the increase. Conifer canopies, which are better able to scavenge...

  13. Changes in microbial communities and soil carbon dynamics across a fire chronosequence in an Alaskan boreal forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dooley, S. R.; Treseder, K. K.

    2010-12-01

    Boreal ecosystems contain an estimated 30-40% of global terrestrial carbon, the majority of which is stored in soil organic matter. Wildfires are a frequent disturbance in boreal forests and have the potential to influence soil carbon dynamics. The frequency and intensity of fires in boreal ecosystems is predicted to increase under global change conditions, highlighting the importance of understanding the relationship between fire and soil carbon dynamics. Theoretical and modeling work suggests that heterotrophic respiration may increase following fires due to higher soil temperatures, further augmenting carbon losses after fires. Alternatively, post-fire changes in microbial abundance and soil properties may inhibit decomposition and decrease carbon emissions from soils. We tested the hypothesis that microbial abundance constrains decomposition in post-fire soils using a fire chronosequence in upland boreal forests of Alaska. This chronosequence includes sites that burned in 2010, 2004, 1999, 1987, and 1956. As a control, we also sampled from a mature black spruce stand that has not burned in over 80 years. To test our hypothesis, we characterized changes in soil nutrients, microbial abundance, and microbial respiration along the chronosequence during the summer of 2010. With the exception of the 2010 burn site, soil ammonium and nitrate increased with time since fire and were highest at the control site. In addition, microbial abundance increased 88% from the 2004 burn site to the control site. Changes in microbial respiration across the chronosequence followed a similar pattern, increasing from 61 to 1125 μg C g-1 soil in the 2004 burn site and control site, respectively. Surprisingly, microbial abundance and respiration did not differ significantly between the 2010 burn site and the control site. These data suggest that very recent burn sites may have an influx of labile carbon compounds into soil that sustains microbial activity. Overall, we found little

  14. Validation of the Integrated Biosphere Simulator over Canadian deciduous and coniferous boreal forest stands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    El Maayar, Mustapha; Price, David T.; Delire, Christine; Foley, Jonathan A.; Black, T. Andrew; Bessemoulin, Pierre

    2001-07-01

    Data collected during the Boreal Ecosystem-Atmosphere Study (BOREAS) at four different forest stands were used to test surface energy and carbon fluxes simulated by the Integrated Biosphere Simulator (IBIS). These stands included deciduous and conifer species and were located in both the BOREAS northern and southern study areas. Two runs were made: one using the original IBIS model and the other using a version modified to consider an organic soil layer (OSL) covering the mineral soil surface. Results show that the inclusion of the OSL substantially improved the simulation of soil heat flux, as well as of temperature and moisture in the topmost soil layer. Simulations show that latent and sensible heat fluxes, and net ecosystem exchange of carbon, were not affected appreciably by the presence of a thin (10 cm or less) OSL covering the forest floor. With a thick (50 cm) OSL, however, simulation of latent heat flux and net ecosystem exchange of carbon was substantially improved. Consideration of the OSL in the model also led to better simulation of the onsets of soil thawing. Correct estimation of heat diffusion to deep soil through thick organic layers requires a parameterization that accounts for the state of the organic material decomposition. Simulations presented here also show the necessity for using detailed information on soil physical properties for better evaluation of model performance.

  15. Traditional use of medicinal plants in the boreal forest of Canada: review and perspectives

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background The boreal forest of Canada is home to several hundred thousands Aboriginal people who have been using medicinal plants in traditional health care systems for thousands of years. This knowledge, transmitted by oral tradition from generation to generation, has been eroding in recent decades due to rapid cultural change. Until now, published reviews about traditional uses of medicinal plants in boreal Canada have focused either on particular Aboriginal groups or on restricted regions. Here, we present a review of traditional uses of medicinal plants by the Aboriginal people of the entire Canadian boreal forest in order to provide comprehensive documentation, identify research gaps, and suggest perspectives for future research. Methods A review of the literature published in scientific journals, books, theses and reports. Results A total of 546 medicinal plant taxa used by the Aboriginal people of the Canadian boreal forest were reported in the reviewed literature. These plants were used to treat 28 disease and disorder categories, with the highest number of species being used for gastro-intestinal disorders, followed by musculoskeletal disorders. Herbs were the primary source of medicinal plants, followed by shrubs. The medicinal knowledge of Aboriginal peoples of the western Canadian boreal forest has been given considerably less attention by researchers. Canada is lacking comprehensive policy on harvesting, conservation and use of medicinal plants. This could be explained by the illusion of an infinite boreal forest, or by the fact that many boreal medicinal plant species are widely distributed. Conclusion To our knowledge, this review is the most comprehensive to date to reveal the rich traditional medicinal knowledge of Aboriginal peoples of the Canadian boreal forest. Future ethnobotanical research endeavours should focus on documenting the knowledge held by Aboriginal groups that have so far received less attention, particularly those of the western

  16. Long-term 15N tracking from biological N fixation across different plant and humus components of the boreal forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arroniz-Crespo, Maria; Jones, David L.; Zackrisson, Olle; Nilsson, Marie-Charlotte; DeLuca, Thomas H.

    2014-05-01

    Biological N2 fixation by cyanobacteria associated with feather mosses is an important cog in the nitrogen (N) cycle of boreal forests; still, our understanding of the turnover and fate of N fixed by this association remains greatly incomplete. The 15N signature of plants and soil serves as a powerful tool to explore N dynamics in forest ecosystems. In particular, in the present study we aimed to investigate the contribution of N2 fixation to δ15N signatures of plants and humus component of the boreal forest. Here we present results from a long-term (7 years) tacking of labelled 15N2 across the humus layer, seedlings of the tree species Pinus sylvestris, two common dwarf shrub species (Empetrum hermaphroditum and Vaccinium vitis-idaea) and the feather moss Pleurozium schreibery. The enriched experiment was conducted in 2005 in a natural boreal forest in northern Sweden. Two different treatments (10% 15N2 headspace enrichment and control) were setup in nine different plots (0.5 x 0.5 m) within the forest. We observed a significant reduction of δ15N signature of the 15N-enriched moss that could be explained by a growth dilution effect. Nevertheless, after 5 years since 15N2 enrichment some of the label 15N was still detected on the moss and in particular in the dead tissue. We could not detect a clear transfer of the labelled 15N2 from the moss-cyanobacteria system to other components of the ecosystem. However, we found consistence relationship through time between increments of δ15N signature of some of the forest components in plots which exhibited higher N fixation rates in the moss. In particular, changes in natural abundance δ15N that could be associated with N fixation were more apparent in the humus layer, the dwarf shrub Vaccinium vitis-idaea and the pine seedlings when comparing across plots and years.

  17. 3D simulation of boreal forests: structure and dynamics in complex terrain and in a changing climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brazhnik, Ksenia; Shugart, Herman H.

    2015-10-01

    To understand how the Siberian boreal forests may respond to near-future climate change, we employed a modeling approach and examined thresholds for significant and irreversible changes in forest structure and composition that are likely to be reached by mid-21st century. We applied the new spatially-explicit gap-dynamics model SIBBORK toward the understanding of how transition zones, namely treelines, which are notoriously undersampled and difficult to model, may change in the near future. We found that a 2 °C change in annual average air temperature significantly altered the structure, composition, and productivity of boreal forests stands both in the northern and the southern treeline ecotones. Treeline migration occurs at smaller temperature changes. Based on the current (1990-2014) observed warming trends, a 2 °C increase in annual average temperature compared to historical climate (1961-1990) is likely to be experienced at the northern treeline by 2040 and at the southern treeline by 2050. With regards to the forest biome, the most significant warming to date has been predicted and observed in Siberia. A 2 °C increase in annual average temperature compared to the second half of the 19th century is smaller than the predictions of even the most conservative RCP2.6 climate change scenario (IPCC 2013), and has previously been assumed to not likely result in dramatic changes to ecosystems or biome shifts. We show that at a +2 °C change, biome shifts from forest to steppe are likely to occur across a large area in southern Siberia. These changes in land cover will inevitably result in changes in the biodiversity, carbon storage, and the ecosystem services provided by the boreal forests of southern Siberia.

  18. Studies of microwave scattering and canopy architecture for boreal forests

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lockhart, G. Lance; Gogineni, S. P.

    1994-01-01

    Our primary objectives during the last year have been to develop a helicopter-borne radar system for measuring microwave backscatter from vegetation and to use this system to study the characteristics of backscatter from the boreal forest. Our research is aimed at refining the current microwave models and using these improvements for more accurate interpretation of SAR data. SAR data are very useful for monitoring the boreal forest region because of the microwave signal's ability to penetrate clouds and to see at night. Meeting these objectives involves several stages of development. The first stage is the design and implementation of a frequency-modulated continuous-wave (FM-CW) radar system with the capability of measuring backscatter at three frequencies and four polarizations at each frequency. These requirements necessitate a twelve-channel radar system. Using three frequencies is advantageous because it allows us to look at different parts of the canopy. For instance, the lower frequency signal penetrates deeper into the canopy and allows us to see the ground while the high frequency signal is scattered more by the leaves and needles and typically does not penetrate to the floor of the forest. We designed the radar starting with the antenna system. We then developed the intermediate frequency (IF) and radio frequency (RF) sections of the radar. Also, the need to collect data from twelve channels during each flight line presented a complex data acquisition problem that we solved by using a high-speed data acquisition board. After construction, the radar was tested at the lab. We performed extensive testing of the IF and RF systems of the radar during this time. Once we were satisfied with the operation of the radar it was shipped to Canada for use in the second intensive field campaign (IFC-2) from July 16 - August 8, 1994. During IFC-2, we collected backscatter data over the experimental sites in the southern study area (SSA). Additionally, we used a ground

  19. Connecting forest ecosystem and microwave backscatter models

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kasischke, Eric S.; Christensen, Norman L., Jr.

    1990-01-01

    A procedure is outlined to connect data obtained from active microwave remote sensing systems with forest ecosystem models. The hierarchy of forest ecosystem models is discussed, and the levels at which microwave remote sensing data can be used as inputs are identified. In addition, techniques to utilize forest ecosystem models to assist in the validation of theoretical microwave backscatter models are identified. Several examples to illustrate these connecting processes are presented.

  20. Variations in methane and nitrous oxide mixing ratios at the southern boundary of a Canadian boreal forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simpson, I. J.; Edwards, G. C.; Thurtell, G. W.

    Diurnal and seasonal variations in methane (CH 4) and nitrous oxide (N 2O) mixing ratios were measured above a boreal aspen stand at the southern boundary of the Canadian boreal forest, about 5 km north of agricultural land. The research was conducted between 16 April and 16 September 1994, in the Prince Albert National Park, Saskatchewan, to better understand patterns of CH 4 and N 2O cycling in boreal ecosystems. The research also presents a method for detecting the long-range transport of trace gases using a micrometeorological, laser-based gas monitoring system. Both CH 4 and N 2O featured diurnal cycles consistent with a pattern of net emission for each trace gas. The CH 4 mixing ratio displayed a seasonal variation that was strongly related to soil temperature, with measured values roughly 30 ppb higher in the late summer than in spring. During the latter half of the experiment, the CH 4 mixing ratios varied with wind direction and suggested areas of higher emission to the northeast and east of the measurement tower. The N 2O fluxes also showed favoured directions, although in this case the highest mixing ratios were measured during the springtime in air masses originating south and southwest of the tower. The high springtime values coincided with spring thaw emissions of N 2O from agricultural fields to the south, and the results suggest that the trace gas analysis system detected the long-range transport of N 2O from the agricultural land. Ammonia and ammonium likewise may be transported to the southern boreal forest from agricultural land, and a future investigation at this site could seek to determine the effect of their long-range transport on the southern boreal forest.

  1. Energy balance and canopy conductance of a boreal aspen forest: Partitioning overstory and understory components

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blanken, P. D.; Black, T. A.; Yang, P. C.; Neumann, H. H.; Nesic, Z.; Staebler, R.; den Hartog, G.; Novak, M. D.; Lee, X.

    1997-12-01

    The energy balance components were measured throughout most of 1994 in and above a southern boreal aspen (Populus tremuloides Michx.) forest (53.629°N 106.200°W) with a hazelnut (Corylus cornuta Marsh.) understory as part of the Boreal Ecosystem-Atmosphere Study. The turbulent fluxes were measured at both levels using the eddy-covariance technique. After rejection of suspect data due to instationarity or inhomogeneity, occasional erratic behavior in turbulent fluxes and lack of energy balance closure led to a recalculation of the fluxes of sensible and latent heat using their ratio and the available energy. The seasonal development in leaf area was reflected in a strong seasonal pattern of the energy balance. Leaf growth began during the third week of May with a maximum forest leaf area index of 5.6 m2 m-2 reached by mid-July. During the full-leaf period, aspen and hazelnut accounted for approximately 40 and 60% of the forest leaf area, respectively. Sensible heat was the dominant consumer of forest net radiation during the preleaf period, while latent heat accounted for the majority of forest net radiation during the leafed period. Hazelnut transpiration accounted for 25% of the forest transpiration during the summer months. During the full-leaf period (June 1 to September 7) daytime dry-canopy mean aspen and hazelnut canopy conductances were 330 mmol m-2 s-1 (8.4 mm s-1) (70% of the total forest conductance) and 113 mmol m-2 s-1 (2.9 mm s-1) (24% of the total forest conductance), respectively. Maximum aspen and hazelnut canopy conductances were 1200 mmol m-2 s-1 (30 mm s-1) and 910 mmol m-2 s-1 (23 mm s-1 ), respectively, and maximum stomatal conductances were 490 mmol m-2 s-1 (12.5 mm s-1) and 280 mmol m-2 s-1 (7 m s-1), aspen and hazelnut, respectively. Both species showed a decrease in canopy conductance as the saturation deficit increased and both showed an increase in canopy conductance as the photosynthetic active radiation increased. There was a linear

  2. Plant community composition as a predictor of regional soil carbon storage in Alaskan boreal black spruce ecosystems

    Treesearch

    T.N. Hollingsworth; E.A.G. Schuur; F.S. III Chapin; M.D. Walker

    2008-01-01

    The boreal forest is the largest terrestrial biome in North America and holds a large portion of the world's reactive soil carbon. Therefore, understanding soil carbon accumulation on a landscape or regional scale across the boreal forest is useful for predicting future soil carbon storage. Here, we examined the relationship between floristic composition and...

  3. Missouri Ozark Forest Ecosystem Project: the experiment

    Treesearch

    Steven L. Sheriff

    2002-01-01

    Missouri Ozark Forest Ecosystem Project (MOFEP) is a unique experiment to learn about the impacts of management practices on a forest system. Three forest management practices (uneven-aged management, even-aged management, and no-harvest management) as practiced by the Missouri Department of Conservation were randomly assigned to nine forest management sites using a...

  4. Who is the new sheriff in town regulating boreal forest growth?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park Williams, A.; Xu, Chonggang; McDowell, Nate G.

    2011-12-01

    G P, Alix C, Barber V A, Winslow S E, Sousa E E, Heiser P, Herriges J D and Goetz S J 2011 Changes in forest productivity across Alaska consistent with biome shift Ecol. Lett. 14 373-9 Berner L T, Beck P S A, Bunn A G, Lloyd A H and Goetz S J 2011 High-latitude tree growth and satellite vegetation indices: correlations and trends in Russia and Canada (1982-2008) J. Geophys. Res. 116 G01015 Bunn A G and Goetz S J 2006 Trends in satellite-observed circumpolar photosynthetic activity from 1982 to 2003: the influence of seasonality, cover type, and vegetation density Earth Interact. 10 1-19 D'Arrigo R, Jacoby G, Buckley B, Sakulich J, Frank D, Wilson R, Curtis A and Anchukaitis K 2009 Tree growth and inferred temperature variability at the North American Arctic treeline Glob. Planet. Change 65 71-82 D'Arrigo R, Wilson R, Liepert B, Cherubini P 2008 On the 'divergence problem' in northern forests: a review of the tree-ring evidence and possible causes Glob. Planet. Change 60 289-305 Davi N K, Jacoby G C and Wiles G C 2003 Boreal temperature variability inferred from maximum latewood density and tree-ring width data, Wrangell Mountain region, Alaska Quatern. Res. 60 252-62 Flexas J, Bota J, Loreto F, Cornic G and Sharkey T 2004 Diffusive and metabolic limitations to photosynthesis under drought and salinity in C3 plants Plant Biol. 6 269-79 Goetz S J, Bunn A G, Fiske G J and Houghton R 2005 Satellite-observed photosynthetic trends across boreal North America associated with climate and fire disturbance Proc. Natl Acad. Sci. USA 102 13521-5 Goetz S J, Kimball J S, Mack M C and Kasischke E S 2011 Scoping completed for an experiment to assess vulnerability of Arctic and boreal ecosystems EOS Trans. Am. Geophys. Union 92 150-1 McDowell N G 2011 Mechanisms linking drought, hydraulics, carbon metabolism, and vegetation mortality Plant Physiol. 155 1051-9 McGuire A D, Ruess R W, Lloyd A, Yarie J, Clein J S and Juday G P 2010 Vulnerability of white spruce tree growth in interior

  5. Modeling impacts of fire severity on successional trajectories and future fire behavior in Alaskan boreal forests

    Treesearch

    Jill F. Johnstone; T. Scott Rupp; Mark Olson; David. Verbyla

    2011-01-01

    Much of the boreal forest in western North America and Alaska experiences frequent, stand-replacing wildfires. Secondary succession after fire initiates most forest stands and variations in fire characteristics can have strong effects on pathways of succession. Variations in surface fire severity that influence whether regenerating forests are dominated by coniferous...

  6. Summary and synthesis: past and future changes in the Alaskan Boreal Forest.

    Treesearch

    F. Stuart Chapin; David McGuire; Roger W. Ruess; Marilyn W. Walker; Richard D. Boone; Mary E. Edwards; Bruce P. Finney; Larry D. Hinzman; Jeremy B. Jones; Glenn P. Juday; Eric S. Kasischke; Knut Kielland; Andrea H. Lloyd; Mark W. Oswood; Chien-Lu Ping; Eric Rexstad; Vladimir E. Romanovsky; Joshua P. Schimel; Elena B. Sparrow; Bjartmar Sveinbjörnsson; David W. Valentine; Keith Van Cleve; David L. Verbyla; Leslie A. Viereck; Richard A. Werner; Tricia L. Wurtz; John. Yarie

    2006-01-01

    Historically the boreal forest has experienced major changes, and it remains a highly dynamic biome today. During cold phases of Quaternary climate cycles, forests were virtually absent from Alaska, and since the postglacial re-establishment of forests ca 13,000 years ago, here have been periods of both relative stability and rapid change (Chapter 5). Today, the...

  7. Restoration Concepts for Temperate and Boreal Forests of North America and Western Europe

    Treesearch

    John A. Stanturf; P. Madsen

    2002-01-01

    Throughout the boreal and temperate zones, forest restoration efforts attempt to counteract negative effects of conversion to other land use (afforestation and remediation) and disturbance and stress on existing forests (rehabilitation). Appropriate silvicultural practices can be designed for any forest restoration objective. Most common objectives include timber,...

  8. Decomposition of soil organic matter from boreal black spruce forest: environmental and chemical controls

    Treesearch

    Kimberly P. Wickland; Jason C. Neff

    2007-01-01

    Black spruce forests are a dominant covertype in the boreal forest region, and they inhabit landscapes that span a wide range of hydrologic and thermal conditions. These forests often have large stores of soil organic carbon. Recent increases in temperature at northern latitudes may be stimulating decomposition rates of this soil carbon. It is unclear, however, how...

  9. Air pollutants effects on forest ecosystems

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1985-01-01

    This book presents the papers given at a conference on the effects of acid rain on forests. The conference was sponsored by the National Acid Precipitation Assessment Program (NAPAP). Topics considered at the conference included the status of US research on acid deposition and its effects contributing factors to the decline of forests, evidence for effects on ecosystems, the effects of air pollutants on forest ecosystems in North America and Europe, forest management, and future scientific research programs and management approaches.

  10. UAVSAR's first campaign over temperate and boreal forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simard, M.; Pinto, N.; Dubayah, R.; Hensley, S.

    2009-12-01

    We present the first analysis and results of the August 2009 UAVSAR and field campaign in temperate and boreal forests. UAVSAR is an airborne fully polarimetric L-band radar capable of repeat-pass interferometry (inSAR). We focus on 3 sites located in New Hampshire, Maine and Québec. The UAVSAR sites covered Bartlett, Hubbard Brook, Penobscot, Howland and Mont-Morency experimental forests in addition to covering part of White Mountain National Forest, Laurentides Wildlife Reserve, Jacques-Cartier and Grand-Jardins National Parks. We collected field data on forest structure in a total of 50 plots with measurements including tree height, DBH, species as well as crown sizes. We compiled the field data to derive canopy structure metrics such as canopy height and tree size class distribution. UAVSAR collected data over the 3 sites on 4 different days spread throughout the 11-day campaign. This timing strategy was to enable us to investigate the impact of temporal change on inSAR coherence. However, in this presentation, we focus on the analysis of single coherence measurements and polarimetric radar backscatter. We investigate their dependence on vegetation type, slope as well as weather. This is achieved by direct comparison with field, forestry and lidar data, and with a 3D vegetation model. We use a "Regression Tree" model with explicit relationships between field- and lidar-estimated canopy heights, environmental variables, radar backscatter and coherence, and MODIS percent tree cover. We assess the potential of this approach and the usefulness of each input datasets. Finally, we report on the specific accuracy of L-band radar polarimetry to estimate biomass throughout the UAVSAR sites. UAVSAR first image near Quebec city.

  11. Forest management and biodiversity conservation based on natural ecosystem dynamics in northern Europe: the complexity challenge.

    PubMed

    Kuuluvainen, Timo

    2009-09-01

    Recent research in northern Europe has revised many long-held conceptions of the complexity of forest ecosystems and their natural structure and dynamics. The unveiling of the picture of natural characteristics of forest ecosystem structure and dynamics reveals much more diversity than its traditional complement, highlighting the importance of non-stand-replacing disturbances and the associated heterogeneous and dynamic stand and landscape structures. This increasing detail is a reflection of a fundamental change in the ecological understanding of forests as complex ecosystems. In particular, the generalization that the boreal forest is regulated by fierce stand-replacing disturbances, leading to the dominance of even-aged stand successions, has been disproved. However, this misconception has, until now, been repeated and used to legitimize the dominant practice of clear-cutting as a nature-based way to manage the forest. The practical conclusion of this review paper is that the dominating forest management model in North European boreal forests, which is based on the clear-cut harvesting of timber and growing of even-aged stands, is in contradiction with the variable and complex characteristics of the disturbance-succession cycle observed in naturally dynamic forests with negligible human impact. As a consequence, the structural variation of the boreal forest under management has been grossly truncated compared with its natural range. Because of this, and due to the scarcity of protection areas in many regions of northern Europe, it is not likely that the conservation of native biodiversity and ecological sustainability will be attained, assuming that the model of forest management remains unchanged. Thus, there is a strong incentive for change in the prevailing forest management model toward one that is based on natural ecosystem dynamics and an understanding of forests as complex systems.

  12. Nitrous oxide uptake rates in boreal coniferous forests are associated with soil characteristics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Siljanen, Henri; Biasi, Christina; Martikainen, Pertti

    2014-05-01

    Nitrous oxide (N2O) is a strong greenhouse gas and a significant contributor to the destruction of the ozone layer. The radiative forcing of N2O is considered to be 320 more efficient than carbon dioxide.The major portion of global N2O is emitted from agricultural soils. There are studies suggesting that N2O has also a sink in forest soils. However there is relatively limited knowledge on factors controlling N2O consumption in forest soils. Hence N2O consumption was studied in boreal coniferous forests having different forest cover, soil chemical and physical structure and land-use history. The N2O consumption was measured by static chamber technique in the field across spatio-seasonal sampling design. Typical and atypical denitrifiers were quantified with nosZ functional gene marker. Additionally chemical and physical environmental parameters were analyzed to link N2O flux, microbial community and composition of soils. Nitrous oxide uptake could be associated with specific ecosystem and environmental conditions. Soil physical structure and land-use history were shown to be prior factors determining the strength of the uptake rate.

  13. Seasonality and nitrogen supply modify carbon partitioning in understory vegetation of a boreal coniferous forest.

    PubMed

    Hasselquist, N J; Metcalfe, D B; Marshall, J D; Lucas, R W; Högberg, P

    2016-03-01

    Given the strong coupling between the carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) cycles, there is substantial interest in understanding how N availability affects C cycling in terrestrial ecosystems, especially in ecosystems limited by N. However, most studies in temperate and boreal forests have focused on the effects of N addition on tree growth. By comparison, less is known about the effects of N availability on the cycling of C in understory vegetation despite some evidence that dwarf shrubs, mosses, and lichens play an important role in the forest C balance. In this study, we used an in situ 13CO2 pulse-labeling technique to examine the short-term dynamics of C partitioning in understory vegetation in three boreal Pinus sylvestris forest stands exposed to different rates of N addition: a low and high N addition that receive annual additions of NH4NO3 of 20 and 100 kg N/ha, respectively, and this is a typo. It should be an unfertilized control. Labeling was conducted at two distinct periods (early vs. late growing season), which provided a seasonal picture of how N addition affects C dynamics in understory vegetation. In contrast to what has been found in trees, there was no obvious trend in belowground C partitioning in ericaceous plants in response to N additions or seasonality. Increasing N addition led to a greater percentage of 13C being incorporated into ericaceous leaves with a high turnover, whereas high rates of N addition strongly reduced the incorporation of 13C into less degradable moss tissues. Addition of N also resulted in a greater percentage of the 13C label being respired back to the atmosphere and an overall reduction in total understory carbon use efficiency. Taken together, our results suggest a faster cycling of C in understory vegetation with increasing N additions; yet the magnitude of this general response was strongly dependent on the amount of N added and varied seasonally. These results provide some of the first in situ C and N partitioning

  14. Impact of Forest Harvesting on Trophic Structure of Eastern Canadian Boreal Shield Lakes: Insights from Stable Isotope Analyses

    PubMed Central

    Glaz, Patricia; Sirois, Pascal; Archambault, Philippe; Nozais, Christian

    2014-01-01

    Perturbations on ecosystems can have profound immediate effects and can, accordingly, greatly alter the natural community. Land-use such as forestry activities in the Canadian Boreal region have increased in the last decades, raising concerns about their potential impact on aquatic ecosystems. The objective of this study was to evaluate the impact of forest harvesting on trophic structure in eastern Canadian Boreal Shield lakes. We measured carbon and nitrogen stable isotopes values for aquatic primary producers, terrestrial detritus, benthic macroinvertebrates, zooplankton and brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis) over a three-year period in eight eastern Boreal Shield lakes. Four lakes were studied before, one and two years after forest harvesting (perturbed lakes) and compared with four undisturbed reference lakes (unperturbed lakes) sampled at the same time. Stable isotope mixing models showed leaf-litter to be the main food source for benthic primary consumers in both perturbed and unperturbed lakes, suggesting no logging impact on allochthonous subsidies to the littoral food web. Brook trout derived their food mainly from benthic predatory macroinvertebrates in unperturbed lakes. However, in perturbed lakes one year after harvesting, zooplankton appeared to be the main contributor to brook trout diet. This change in brook trout diet was mitigated two years after harvesting. Size-related diet shift were also observed for brook trout, indicating a diet shift related to size. Our study suggests that carbon from terrestrial habitat may be a significant contribution to the food web of oligotrophic Canadian Boreal Shield lakes. Forest harvesting did not have an impact on the diet of benthic primary consumers. On the other hand, brook trout diet composition was affected by logging with greater zooplankton contribution in perturbed lakes, possibly induced by darker-colored environment in these lakes one year after logging. PMID:24763366

  15. Impact of forest harvesting on trophic structure of eastern Canadian Boreal Shield lakes: insights from stable isotope analyses.

    PubMed

    Glaz, Patricia; Sirois, Pascal; Archambault, Philippe; Nozais, Christian

    2014-01-01

    Perturbations on ecosystems can have profound immediate effects and can, accordingly, greatly alter the natural community. Land-use such as forestry activities in the Canadian Boreal region have increased in the last decades, raising concerns about their potential impact on aquatic ecosystems. The objective of this study was to evaluate the impact of forest harvesting on trophic structure in eastern Canadian Boreal Shield lakes. We measured carbon and nitrogen stable isotopes values for aquatic primary producers, terrestrial detritus, benthic macroinvertebrates, zooplankton and brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis) over a three-year period in eight eastern Boreal Shield lakes. Four lakes were studied before, one and two years after forest harvesting (perturbed lakes) and compared with four undisturbed reference lakes (unperturbed lakes) sampled at the same time. Stable isotope mixing models showed leaf-litter to be the main food source for benthic primary consumers in both perturbed and unperturbed lakes, suggesting no logging impact on allochthonous subsidies to the littoral food web. Brook trout derived their food mainly from benthic predatory macroinvertebrates in unperturbed lakes. However, in perturbed lakes one year after harvesting, zooplankton appeared to be the main contributor to brook trout diet. This change in brook trout diet was mitigated two years after harvesting. Size-related diet shift were also observed for brook trout, indicating a diet shift related to size. Our study suggests that carbon from terrestrial habitat may be a significant contribution to the food web of oligotrophic Canadian Boreal Shield lakes. Forest harvesting did not have an impact on the diet of benthic primary consumers. On the other hand, brook trout diet composition was affected by logging with greater zooplankton contribution in perturbed lakes, possibly induced by darker-colored environment in these lakes one year after logging.

  16. Patterns of NPP, GPP, respiration, and NEP during boreal forest succession

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Goulden, M.L.; Mcmillan, A.M.S.; Winston, G.C.; Rocha, A.V.; Manies, K.L.; Harden, J.W.; Bond-Lamberty, B. P.

    2011-01-01

    We combined year-round eddy covariance with biometry and biomass harvests along a chronosequence of boreal forest stands that were 1, 6, 15, 23, 40, 74, and 154 years old to understand how ecosystem production and carbon stocks change during recovery from stand-replacing crown fire. Live biomass (Clive) was low in the 1 and 6 year old stands, and increased following a logistic pattern to high levels in the 74 and 154year old stands. Carbon stocks in the forest floor (Cforest floor) and coarse woody debris (CCWD) were comparatively high in the 1year old stand, reduced in the 6 through 40year old stands, and highest in the 74 and 154year old stands. Total net primary production (TNPP) was reduced in the 1 and 6year old stands, highest in the 23 through 74year old stands and somewhat reduced in the 154year old stand. The NPP decline at the 154year old stand was related to increased autotrophic respiration rather than decreased gross primary production (GPP). Net ecosystem production (NEP), calculated by integrated eddy covariance, indicated the 1 and 6 year old stands were losing carbon, the 15year old stand was gaining a small amount of carbon, the 23 and 74year old stands were gaining considerable carbon, and the 40 and 154year old stands were gaining modest amounts of carbon. The recovery from fire was rapid; a linear fit through the NEP observations at the 6 and 15year old stands indicated the transition from carbon source to sink occurred within 11-12 years. The NEP decline at the 154year old stand appears related to increased losses from Clive by tree mortality and possibly from Cforest floor by decomposition. Our findings support the idea that NPP, carbon production efficiency (NPP/GPP), NEP, and carbon storage efficiency (NEP/TNPP) all decrease in old boreal stands. ?? 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  17. Ammonia and nitric acid emissions from wetlands and boreal forest fires

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lebel, Peter J.; Vay, Stephanie A.; Roberts, Patricia D.

    1991-01-01

    Tests conducted during three (one boreal and two wetl