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Sample records for montane forest conditions

  1. Ecohydrological Response of Trees to Leaf Wetness Gradients Under Wet and Dry Canopy Conditions in a Montane Tropical Forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aparecido, L. M. T.; Moore, G. W.; Miller, G. R.; Cahill, A. T.

    2014-12-01

    Wet canopy evaporation is a significant component of the water budget in rainforests. Frequent precipitation events followed by drying produce spatial and temporal variation in wet/dry forest canopy conditions that influence processes such as photosynthesis and growth. Upper canopies contribute a disproportionately large fraction of transpiration and carbon assimilation relative to lower canopy layers as exposed leaves dry more rapidly following each rain event. However, the partitioning between wet canopy evaporation and dry canopy transpiration has not been extensively studied in tropical forests. As part of a larger study in central Costa Rica aimed at improving land-surface modeling of evapotranspiration (ET) processes in tropical montane forests, we compared transpiration among trees with exposed and shaded crowns under both wet and dry canopy conditions. Transpiration was measured using 33 sap flow sensors in 20 trees (7 dominant and co-dominant, 8 mid-story, and 5 suppressed) in a mature forest stand surrounding a 40-m tower equipped with eddy covariance and micrometeorological sensors. During the wet month of July, leaves were dry 53% of the time in the upper canopy compared with only 16% of the time in the lower canopy. Dominant and co-dominant trees contributed 68% to total transpiration at this site (23% mid-story, 9% suppressed). Under dry conditions, sap flow rates of dominant and co-dominant trees were about double that of suppressed trees, while suppressed trees differed little between wet and dry days. On partially wet days, all trees had similar sap flow rates, regardless of canopy exposure, with rates nearly as low as days that were entirely wet. This behavior is due to rapid individual tree responses to the transition between wet and dry conditions, indicating that persistently wet tropical environments are uniquely adapted to short-term dryness. ET has important influence on precipitation in tropical forests through land-atmosphere interactions

  2. Climate change - Bad news for montane forest herb layer species?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Patsias, Kathrin; Bruelheide, Helge

    2013-07-01

    Global warming presents a threat to plant species distributed at montane or alpine altitudes if the topography does not allow upward shifts in distribution ranges. Nevertheless, the species might also benefit from increasing temperatures and secondary effects on dominant species (e.g. bark beetle outbreaks or summer drought affecting the canopy species). As a consequence, disturbance frequency in montane forests might increase and light availability for herb layer species will increase. We addressed these interactions in a common garden experiment in Central Germany at different altitudes, representing cold and moist vs. warm and dry conditions. We investigated three montane species with different life forms, including a herb (Trientalis europaea), a grass (Calamagrostis villosa) and a dwarf shrub (Vaccinium myrtillus) under three shading treatments (3%, 28% and 86% of full sunlight). We hypothesized that montane species are at a disadvantage in the lowland, with the dwarf shrub suffering more than the grass. Furthermore, we hypothesized an antagonistic interaction of increased temperature and increased light conditions. While T. europaea and V. myrtillus showed only slightly responses to low altitude conditions, C. villosa displayed a nearly fifteen fold increase in biomass production, despite higher observed herbivory levels in the lowland. We failed to show an antagonistic effect of increased temperature and increased light availability, as all study species suffered from deep shade conditions and grew best under full light conditions at both sites. In conclusion, both improved temperature and light conditions might be principally beneficial for the investigated boreal species, in particular for the grass species C. villosa.

  3. Accumulation of current-use pesticides in neotropical montane forests.

    PubMed

    Daly, Gillian L; Lei, Ying D; Teixeira, Camilla; Muir, Derek C G; Castillo, Luisa E; Wania, Frank

    2007-02-15

    In Central America, chemical-intensive tropical agriculture takes place in close proximity to highly valued and biologically diverse ecosystems, yet the potential for atmospheric transport of pesticides from plantations to national parks and other reserves is poorly characterized. The specific meteorological conditions of mountain ranges can lead to contaminant convergence at high altitudes, raising particular concern for montane forest ecosystems downwind from pesticide use areas. Here we show, based on a wide-ranging air and soil sampling campaign across Costa Rica, that soils in some neotropical montane forests indeed display much higher concentrations of currently used pesticides than soils elsewhere in the country. Specifically, elevated concentrations of the fungicide chlorothalonil, the herbicide dacthal, and the insecticide metabolite endosulfan sulfate on volcanoes Barva and Poas, lying directly downwind of the extensive banana plantations of the Caribbean lowland, indicate the occurrence of atmospheric transport and wet deposition of pesticides at high altitudes. Calculations with a contaminant fate model, designed for mountain regions and parametrized to the Costa Rican environment, show that chemicals with a log K(AW) between -3 and -5 have a greater potential for accumulation at high altitudes. This enrichment behavior is quantified by the Mountain Contamination Potential and is sensitive to contaminant degradability. The modeling work supports the hypothesis suggested by the field results that it is enhanced precipitation scavenging at high elevations (caused by lower temperatures and governed by K(AW)) that causes pesticides to accumulate in tropical montane areas. By providing for the first time evidence of significant transfer of currently used pesticides to Central American montane cloud forests, this study highlights the need to evaluate the risk that tropical agricultural practices place on the region's ecological reserves.

  4. Deposition of Mercury in Forests along a Montane Elevation Gradient.

    PubMed

    Blackwell, Bradley D; Driscoll, Charles T

    2015-05-05

    Atmospheric mercury (Hg) deposition varies along elevation gradients and is influenced by both orographic and biological factors. We quantified total Hg deposition over a 2 year period at 24 forest sites at Whiteface Mountain, NY, USA, that ranged from 450 to 1450 m above sea level and covered three distinct forest types: deciduous/hardwood forest (14.1 μg/m2-yr), spruce/fir forest (33.8 μg/m2-yr), and stunted growth alpine/fir forest (44.0 μg/m2-yr). Atmospheric Hg deposition increased with elevation, with the dominant deposition pathways shifting from litterfall in low-elevation hardwoods to throughfall in midelevation spruce/fir to cloudwater in high-elevation alpine forest. Soil Hg concentrations (ranging from 69 to 416 ng/g for the Oi/Oe and 72 to 598 ng/g for the Oa horizons) were correlated with total Hg deposition, but the weakness of the correlations suggests that additional factors such as climate and tree species also contribute to soil Hg accumulation. Meteorological conditions influenced Hg deposition pathways, as cloudwater Hg diminished in 2010 (dry conditions) compared to 2009 (wet conditions). However, the dry conditions in 2010 led to increased Hg dry deposition and subsequent significant increases in throughfall Hg fluxes compared to 2009. These findings suggest that elevation, forest characteristics, and meteorological conditions are all important drivers of atmospheric Hg deposition to montane forests.

  5. Drivers of methane uptake by montane forest soils in the Peruvian Andes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jones, Sam; Diem, Torsten; Huaraca Quispe, Lidia; Cahuana, Adan; Meir, Patrick; Teh, Yit

    2016-04-01

    season, was only apparent in the upper montane forest. Differences in patterns of soil-atmosphere methane exchange and environmental conditions here and in previous studies of similar ecosystems allow us to speculate that the interaction between soil structure and rainfall regimes may help explain observed variability.

  6. Drought as a Determinant of Tropical Montane Forest Line Position

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giambelluca, T. W.; Crausbay, S.; Hotchkiss, S.; Gotsch, S. G.; Frazier, A. G.; Longman, R. J.

    2014-12-01

    Globally, the upper elevation margins of montane forests follow a latitudinal pattern, ranging from below 1000 m at high latitudes to above 3000 m on continental tropical mountains. Forest lines on oceanic islands are distinctly lower, but are also latitude dependent. While proposed mechanisms to explain forest line position are generally related to effects of low temperature, including tissue damage from freezing and slow growth, aridity has been suggested as a possible cause of the lower oceanic island forest lines. A relatively undisturbed forest line is found on Haleakalā Volcano, on the Island of Maui at an elevation of around 2000 m. Forest on Haleakalā does not appear to be limited by low temperature; mean annual temperature at the forest line (8.8-10.5°C) is well above the suggested threshold growing season temperature. Instead, the position of this ecotone coincides with the mean elevation of the trade wind inversion (TWI), which separates the moist marine atmospheric layer from arid upper air. Abrupt changes in moisture-related climate variables are found at the TWI, including one of the steepest mean annual rainfall gradients in the world. In recent work, microclimate during drought was shown to play a critical role in structuring the Haleakalā forest line, the position of which was most strongly related to relative humidity during a strong El Niño-induced drought. The relationship between El Niño-driven drought and ecotone position was tested in long-term paleoecological data. Reconstructions of the cloud forest's upper limit and moisture balance over the past 3,300 years were strongly associated with paleorecords of El Niño event frequency. The forest ecotone may be particularly responsive to strong, short-duration drought events because taxa here, particularly the isohydric dominant canopy tree Metrosideros polymorpha, are near their physiological limits. Minimum leaf water potential in M. polymorpha near the forest line is close to the turgor

  7. Base Metal Cycling in a Tropical Montane Forest in Ecuador

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilcke, W.; Boy, J.; Knuth, J.; Valarezo, C.

    2007-05-01

    Earlier work had shown that Ca and Mg deposited from the atmosphere were partly taken up by the canopy of an Ecuadorian mountain forest at the western rim of the Amazon basin and that both elements were immobilized during incubation of acid soil organic layer material. We therefore determined all base metal fluxes from atmospheric input through the forest ecosystem to output with surface runoff in three small catchments under tropical montane forest between 1850 and 2200 m above sea level. We found a large interannual variation in the deposition of Ca and Mg from the atmosphere. This variation was related with the ENSO cycle. During La Nina conditions, Saharan dust was transported via the Amazon basin to our study site. Our ecosystem responded by accumulation of base metals likely because of nutrient accretion by increased growth. During strong forest fires in the Amazon basin, increased acid input was observed at our study site. This resulted in the export of base metals and counteracted the base metal accumulation during years of high base metal input. Base metal loss was promoted by fast near-surface flow flushing the base metal-enriched surface layers of the soil (particularly the organic layer) during rainstorms. Base metal loss during baseflow conditions was attributed to the weathering of the Ca- and Mg-poor bedrock and an unavoidable leaching of Ca and Mg with a similar size as weathering. The low availability of Ca and Mg in the studied ecosystem and the positive response of the studied forest to Ca and Mg inputs suggests that at this probably neither N- nor P-limited site base metals played a key role for forest performance. As the Ca and Mg cycles seem to be linked to large-scale events such as the ENSO phenomenon, forest burning in the Amazon basin, and climatic changes (particularly those influencing the storm frequency and intensity and thus the importanc of near-surface flow), future environmental change might have an impact on the stability of the

  8. Climatic impact of tropical lowland deforestation on nearby montane cloud forests.

    PubMed

    Lawton, R O; Nair, U S; Pielke Sr, R A; Welch, R M

    2001-10-19

    Tropical montane cloud forests (TMCFs) depend on predictable, frequent, and prolonged immersion in cloud. Clearing upwind lowland forest alters surface energy budgets in ways that influence dry season cloud fields and thus the TMCF environment. Landsat and Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite imagery show that deforested areas of Costa Rica's Caribbean lowlands remain relatively cloud-free when forested regions have well-developed dry season cumulus cloud fields. Further, regional atmospheric simulations show that cloud base heights are higher over pasture than over tropical forest areas under reasonable dry season conditions. These results suggest that land use in tropical lowlands has serious impacts on ecosystems in adjacent mountains.

  9. Dust outpaces bedrock in nutrient supply to montane forest ecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Aciego, S. M.; Riebe, C. S.; Hart, S. C.; Blakowski, M. A.; Carey, C. J.; Aarons, S. M.; Dove, N. C.; Botthoff, J. K.; Sims, K. W. W.; Aronson, E. L.

    2017-01-01

    Dust provides ecosystem-sustaining nutrients to landscapes underlain by intensively weathered soils. Here we show that dust may also be crucial in montane forest ecosystems, dominating nutrient budgets despite continuous replacement of depleted soils with fresh bedrock via erosion. Strontium and neodymium isotopes in modern dust show that Asian sources contribute 18–45% of dust deposition across our Sierra Nevada, California study sites. The remaining dust originates regionally from the nearby Central Valley. Measured dust fluxes are greater than or equal to modern erosional outputs from hillslopes to channels, and account for 10–20% of estimated millennial-average inputs of bedrock P. Our results demonstrate that exogenic dust can drive the evolution of nutrient budgets in montane ecosystems, with implications for predicting forest response to changes in climate and land use. PMID:28348371

  10. Snowpack, fire, and forest disturbance: interactions affect montane invasions by non-native shrubs.

    PubMed

    Stevens, Jens T; Latimer, Andrew M

    2015-06-01

    Montane regions worldwide have experienced relatively low plant invasion rates, a trend attributed to increased climatic severity, low rates of disturbance, and reduced propagule pressure relative to lowlands. Manipulative experiments at elevations above the invasive range of non-native species can clarify the relative contributions of these mechanisms to montane invasion resistance, yet such experiments are rare. Furthermore, global climate change and land use changes are expected to cause decreases in snowpack and increases in disturbance by fire and forest thinning in montane forests. We examined the importance of these factors in limiting montane invasions using a field transplant experiment above the invasive range of two non-native lowland shrubs, Scotch broom (Cytisus scoparius) and Spanish broom (Spartium junceum), in the rain-snow transition zone of the Sierra Nevada of California. We tested the effects of canopy closure, prescribed fire, and winter snow depth on demographic transitions of each species. Establishment of both species was most likely at intermediate levels of canopy disturbance, but at this intermediate canopy level, snow depth had negative effects on winter survival of seedlings. We used matrix population models to show that an 86% reduction in winter snowfall would cause a 2.8-fold increase in population growth rates in Scotch broom and a 3.5-fold increase in Spanish broom. Fall prescribed fire increased germination rates, but decreased overall population growth rates by reducing plant survival. However, at longer fire return intervals, population recovery between fires is likely to keep growth rates high, especially under low snowpack conditions. Many treatment combinations had positive growth rates despite being above the current invasive range, indicating that propagule pressure, disturbance, and climate can all strongly affect plant invasions in montane regions. We conclude that projected reductions in winter snowpack and increases in

  11. Building a Global Network of Hydro-climatology Sites in Cloud-affected Tropical Montane Forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moore, G. W.; Asbjornsen, H.; Bruijnzeel, S., Sr.; Berry, Z. C.; Giambelluca, T. W.; Martin, P.; Mulligan, M.

    2015-12-01

    Tropical montane forests are characteristically wet environments with low evapotranspiration and sometimes significant contributions from fog interception. They are often located at headwater catchments critical for water supplies, but ecohydroclimate data in these regions are sparse. Such evidence may be crucial for assessing climate alterations in these sensitive ecosystems. As part of a global effort led by the Tropical Montane Cloud Forest Research Coordination Network (Cloudnet - http://cloudnet.agsci.colostate.edu), we aim to extend the network of tropical montane forest sites and establish robust protocols for measuring key ecohydroclimatic parameters, including fog interception, windblown rain, throughfall, leaf wetness, and micrometeorological conditions. Specific recommendations for standardized protocols include (1) rain and fog collectors uniquely designed to separately quantify fog interception from direct rain inputs, even in windy conditions, (2) trough-style throughfall gages that collect 40 times the area of a typical tipping bucket gage with added features to reduce splash-out, (3) clusters of leaf wetness sensors to differentiate frequency and duration of wetness caused by rain and fog on windward and leeward exposures, and (4) basic micrometeorological sensors for solar radiation, temperature, humidity, and wind. At sites where resources allow for additional measurements, we developed protocols for quantifying soil moisture, soil saturation, and plant water uptake from both roots and leaves (i.e. foliar absorption), since these are also important drivers in these systems. Participating sites will be invited to contribute to a global meta-analysis that will provide new insights into the ecohydrology of cloud-affected tropical montane forests.

  12. Unveiling the Hidden Bat Diversity of a Neotropical Montane Forest

    PubMed Central

    Chaverri, Gloriana; Garin, Inazio; Alberdi, Antton; Jimenez, Lide; Castillo-Salazar, Cristian; Aihartza, Joxerra

    2016-01-01

    Mountain environments, characterized by high levels of endemism, are at risk of experiencing significant biodiversity loss due to current trends in global warming. While many acknowledge their importance and vulnerability, these ecosystems still remain poorly studied, particularly for taxa that are difficult to sample such as bats. Aiming to estimate the amount of cryptic diversity among bats of a Neotropical montane cloud forest in Talamanca Range—south-east Central America—, we performed a 15-night sampling campaign, which resulted in 90 captured bats belonging to 8 species. We sequenced their mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COI) and screened their inter- and intraspecific genetic variation. Phylogenetic relations with conspecifics and closely related species from other geographic regions were established using Maximum Likelihood and Bayesian inference methods, as well as median-joining haplotype networks. Mitochondrial lineages highly divergent from hitherto characterized populations (> 9% COI dissimilarity) were found in Myotis oxyotus and Hylonycteris underwoodi. Sturnira burtonlimi and M. keaysi also showed distinct mitochondrial structure with sibling species and/or populations. These results suggest that mountains in the region hold a high degree of endemicity potential that has previously been ignored in bats. They also warn of the high extinction risk montane bats may be facing due to climatic change, particularly in isolated mountain systems like Talamanca Range. PMID:27706168

  13. Chimpanzee seed dispersal in a montane forest fragment in Rwanda.

    PubMed

    Chancellor, Rebecca L; Rundus, Aaron S; Nyandwi, Sylvain

    2017-03-01

    Primate seed dispersal plays an important role in forest regeneration. It may be particularly important to anthropogenically disturbed habitats such as forest fragments. However, few studies have examined primate seed dispersal in these types of environments. Chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) are frugivorous and large-bodied, and are therefore able to disperse both large and small seeds, making them an important seed dispersal species. We examined chimpanzee seed dispersal in Gishwati forest, a 14 km(2) montane rainforest fragment in Rwanda. We systematically collected ≤24-hr-old fecal samples and counted the number of seeds of each fruit species. We also recorded observations of seeds found in wadges. We found that chimpanzees dispersed at least 18 fruit species in 14 families in their feces. Ninety-five percent of feces had seeds, the most common of which were Ficus spp., Myrianthus holstii, and Maesa lanceolata. We estimated that the Gishwati chimpanzee community with a density of 1.7 individuals per km(2) dispersed an average of 592 (>2 mm) seeds km(-2)  day(-1) . We also found that chimpanzees dispersed the seeds of at least two fruit species, Ficus spp. and Chrysophyllum gorungosanum, in their wadges. In addition, 17% of the tree species recorded in our vegetation plots were chimpanzee-dispersed. This study emphasizes the importance of chimpanzees as large seed dispersers in regenerating forest fragments.

  14. Climate change scenario for Costa Rican montane forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Karmalkar, A. V.; Bradley, R. S.; Diaz, H. F.

    2008-06-01

    Tropical montane cloud forests are characterized by persistent immersion in clouds, an important source of moisture during the dry season. Future changes in temperature and precipitation could alter cloud cover at the vegetation level and seriously affect mountain ecosystems. A regional climate modeling study that focuses on changes in the distributions of temperature and precipitation in Costa Rica shows, in general, an increase in temperature and a decrease in precipitation under the A2 scenario. At high elevations, warming is amplified and future temperature distribution lies outside the range of present-day distribution. Compared to the Caribbean side, temperature changes are greater at high elevations on the Pacific side. Model results also show significant changes in precipitation amounts and variability and an increase in the altitude of cloud formation on the Pacific side that may have serious implications for mountain ecosystems in and around Costa Rica.

  15. Historical, Observed, and Modeled Wildfire Severity in Montane Forests of the Colorado Front Range

    PubMed Central

    Sherriff, Rosemary L.; Platt, Rutherford V.; Veblen, Thomas T.; Schoennagel, Tania L.; Gartner, Meredith H.

    2014-01-01

    Large recent fires in the western U.S. have contributed to a perception that fire exclusion has caused an unprecedented occurrence of uncharacteristically severe fires, particularly in lower elevation dry pine forests. In the absence of long-term fire severity records, it is unknown how short-term trends compare to fire severity prior to 20th century fire exclusion. This study compares historical (i.e. pre-1920) fire severity with observed modern fire severity and modeled potential fire behavior across 564,413 ha of montane forests of the Colorado Front Range. We used forest structure and tree-ring fire history to characterize fire severity at 232 sites and then modeled historical fire-severity across the entire study area using biophysical variables. Eighteen (7.8%) sites were characterized by low-severity fires and 214 (92.2%) by mixed-severity fires (i.e. including moderate- or high-severity fires). Difference in area of historical versus observed low-severity fire within nine recent (post-1999) large fire perimeters was greatest in lower montane forests. Only 16% of the study area recorded a shift from historical low severity to a higher potential for crown fire today. An historical fire regime of more frequent and low-severity fires at low elevations (<2260 m) supports a convergence of management goals of ecological restoration and fire hazard mitigation in those habitats. In contrast, at higher elevations mixed-severity fires were predominant historically and continue to be so today. Thinning treatments at higher elevations of the montane zone will not return the fire regime to an historic low-severity regime, and are of questionable effectiveness in preventing severe wildfires. Based on present-day fuels, predicted fire behavior under extreme fire weather continues to indicate a mixed-severity fire regime throughout most of the montane forest zone. Recent large wildfires in the Front Range are not fundamentally different from similar events that occurred

  16. Historical, observed, and modeled wildfire severity in montane forests of the Colorado Front Range.

    PubMed

    Sherriff, Rosemary L; Platt, Rutherford V; Veblen, Thomas T; Schoennagel, Tania L; Gartner, Meredith H

    2014-01-01

    Large recent fires in the western U.S. have contributed to a perception that fire exclusion has caused an unprecedented occurrence of uncharacteristically severe fires, particularly in lower elevation dry pine forests. In the absence of long-term fire severity records, it is unknown how short-term trends compare to fire severity prior to 20th century fire exclusion. This study compares historical (i.e. pre-1920) fire severity with observed modern fire severity and modeled potential fire behavior across 564,413 ha of montane forests of the Colorado Front Range. We used forest structure and tree-ring fire history to characterize fire severity at 232 sites and then modeled historical fire-severity across the entire study area using biophysical variables. Eighteen (7.8%) sites were characterized by low-severity fires and 214 (92.2%) by mixed-severity fires (i.e. including moderate- or high-severity fires). Difference in area of historical versus observed low-severity fire within nine recent (post-1999) large fire perimeters was greatest in lower montane forests. Only 16% of the study area recorded a shift from historical low severity to a higher potential for crown fire today. An historical fire regime of more frequent and low-severity fires at low elevations (<2260 m) supports a convergence of management goals of ecological restoration and fire hazard mitigation in those habitats. In contrast, at higher elevations mixed-severity fires were predominant historically and continue to be so today. Thinning treatments at higher elevations of the montane zone will not return the fire regime to an historic low-severity regime, and are of questionable effectiveness in preventing severe wildfires. Based on present-day fuels, predicted fire behavior under extreme fire weather continues to indicate a mixed-severity fire regime throughout most of the montane forest zone. Recent large wildfires in the Front Range are not fundamentally different from similar events that occurred

  17. Variation in ectomycorrhizal fungal communities associated with Oreomunnea mexicana (Juglandaceae) in a Neotropical montane forest.

    PubMed

    Corrales, Adriana; Arnold, A Elizabeth; Ferrer, Astrid; Turner, Benjamin L; Dalling, James W

    2016-01-01

    Neotropical montane forests are often dominated by ectomycorrhizal (EM) tree species, yet the diversity of their EM fungal communities remains poorly explored. In lower montane forests in western Panama, the EM tree species Oreomunnea mexicana (Juglandaceae) forms locally dense populations in forest otherwise characterized by trees that form arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) associations. The objective of this study was to compare the composition of EM fungal communities associated with Oreomunnea adults, saplings, and seedlings across sites differing in soil fertility and the amount and seasonality of rainfall. Analysis of fungal nrITS DNA (nuclear ribosomal internal transcribed spacers) revealed 115 EM fungi taxa from 234 EM root tips collected from adults, saplings, and seedlings in four sites. EM fungal communities were equally species-rich and diverse across Oreomunnea developmental stages and sites, regardless of soil conditions or rainfall patterns. However, ordination analysis revealed high compositional turnover between low and high fertility/rainfall sites located ca. 6 km apart. The EM fungal community was dominated by Russula (ca. 36 taxa). Cortinarius, represented by 14 species and previously reported to extract nitrogen from organic sources under low nitrogen availability, was found only in low fertility/high rainfall sites. Phylogenetic diversity analyses of Russula revealed greater evolutionary distance among taxa found on sites with contrasting fertility and rainfall than was expected by chance, suggesting that environmental differences among sites may be important in structuring EM fungal communities. More research is needed to evaluate whether EM fungal taxa associated with Oreomunnea form mycorrhizal networks that might account for local dominance of this tree species in otherwise diverse forest communities.

  18. Drivers of atmospheric methane uptake by montane forest soils in the southern Peruvian Andes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jones, Sam P.; Diem, Torsten; Huaraca Quispe, Lidia P.; Cahuana, Adan J.; Reay, Dave S.; Meir, Patrick; Arn Teh, Yit

    2016-07-01

    The soils of tropical montane forests can act as sources or sinks of atmospheric methane (CH4). Understanding this activity is important in regional atmospheric CH4 budgets given that these ecosystems account for substantial portions of the landscape in mountainous areas like the Andes. We investigated the drivers of net CH4 fluxes from premontane, lower and upper montane forests, experiencing a seasonal climate, in south-eastern Peru. Between February 2011 and June 2013, these soils all functioned as net sinks for atmospheric CH4. Mean (standard error) net CH4 fluxes for the dry and wet season were -1.6 (0.1) and -1.1 (0.1) mg CH4-C m-2 d-1 in the upper montane forest, -1.1 (0.1) and -1.0 (0.1) mg CH4-C m-2 d-1 in the lower montane forest, and -0.2 (0.1) and -0.1 (0.1) mg CH4-C m-2 d-1 in the premontane forest. Seasonality in CH4 exchange varied among forest types with increased dry season CH4 uptake only apparent in the upper montane forest. Variation across these forests was best explained by available nitrate and water-filled pore space indicating that nitrate inhibition of oxidation or diffusional constraints imposed by changes in water-filled pore space on methanotrophic communities may represent important controls on soil-atmosphere CH4 exchange. Net CH4 flux was inversely related to elevation; a pattern that differs to that observed in Ecuador, the only other extant study site of soil-atmosphere CH4 exchange in the tropical Andes. This may result from differences in rainfall patterns between the regions, suggesting that attention should be paid to the role of rainfall and soil moisture dynamics in modulating CH4 uptake by the organic-rich soils typical of high-elevation tropical forests.

  19. Fire history and tree recruitment in the Colorado Front Range upper montane zone: implications for forest restoration.

    PubMed

    Schoennagel, Tania; Sherriff, Rosemary L; Veblen, Thomas T

    2011-09-01

    Forests experiencing moderate- or mixed-severity fire regimes are presumed to be widespread across the western United States, but few studies have characterized these complex disturbance regimes and their effects on contemporary forest structure. Restoration of pre-fire-suppression open-forest structure to reduce the risk of uncharacteristic stand-replacing fires is a guiding principle in forest management policy, but identifying which forests are clear candidates for restoration remains a challenge. We conducted dendroecological reconstructions of fire history and stand structure at 40 sites in the upper montane zone of the Colorado Front Range (2400-2800 m), sampled in proportion to the distribution of forest types in that zone (50% dominated by ponderosa pine, 28% by lodgepole pine, 12% by aspen, 10% by Douglas-fir). We characterized past fire severity based on remnant criteria at each site in order to assess the effect of fire history on tree establishment patterns, and we also evaluated the influence of fire suppression and climate. We found that 62% of the sites experienced predominantly moderate-severity fire, 38% burned at high severity, and no sites burned exclusively at low severity. The proportion of total tree and sapling establishment was significantly different among equal time periods based on a chi-square test, with highest tree and sapling establishment during the pre-fire-suppression period (1835-1919). Superposed epoch analysis revealed that fires burned during years of extreme drought (95% CI). The major pulse of tree establishment in the upper montane zone occurred during a multidecadal period of extreme drought conditions in the Colorado Front Range (1850-1889), during which 53% of the fires from the 1750-1989 period burned. In the upper montane zone of the Colorado Front Range, historical evidence suggests that these forests are resilient to prolonged periods of severe drought and associated severe fires.

  20. Water Vapor Exchange in a Costa Rican Lower Montane Tropical Forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andrews, R.; Miller, G. R.; Cahill, A. T.; Moore, G. W.; Aparecido, L. M. T.

    2015-12-01

    Because of high canopy interception in tropical forests, evaporation from wet canopy surfaces makes up a sizeable portion of the total water vapor flux. The modeling complexities presented by changing canopy wetness, along with a scarcity of land-atmosphere flux exchange data from tropical forests, means evapotranspiration (ET) processes have been poorly represented in the tropics in land-surface modeling schemes. To better understand tropical forest ET, we will evaluate the influence of canopy wetness and various micrometeorological data on ET partitioning and total ET flux. We have collected flux data from a lower montane forest in Costa Rica at a newly established AmeriFlux site, which notably has the highest mean annual precipitation of any site in the network. The site features a 39-m canopy tower, equipped with two eddy covariance systems (LI-7200, LI-COR), a CO2/H2O atmospheric profile system (AP200, Campbell Scientific), leaf wetness sensors (LWS, Decagon Devices), sap flow sensors, and a soil respiration chamber (LI-8100A, LI-COR) as well as an array of other micrometeorological sensors. At the site, total ET is driven primarily by available energy, and to a lesser extent, by vapor pressure deficit. Average daily latent energy fluxes peak at values of 160, 75, and 35 W m-2 for dry, partially wet, and wet canopy conditions respectively. Correlations between latent energy flux and all other variables are strongest for drier canopy conditions. Complex relationships between canopy wetness and tropical forest ET cause the environmental controls on these fluxes to be significantly different from those in other biomes. As a result, a new modeling paradigm is needed to more accurately model ET differences between tropical forests and other vegetation types.

  1. Characterization of the Montane Huntington Wildlife Forest Ecosystem Using Machine Learning Approaches from Remote Sensing Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Manqi

    Montane forests are susceptible to various stressors such as land use and climate change. Consequently, research on characterizing montane forest ecosystems should be conducted on a continuous basis for sustainable forest management. In this research, forest type mapping and change analysis, and biomass/carbon stock quantification were performed over a mountainous forest located in the central Adirondack Park, NY, by employing machine learning techniques at the plot level. Multi-temporal Landsat TM data were used to classify forest type cover and to detect forest cover changes for the past 20 years. Forest biomass and carbon stock quantification was then performed using full waveform LiDAR data collected in September 2011. Accuracies from the two case studies were in support of the versatility of machine learning approaches for forest and ecological investigation. Topographic characteristics affected the classification accuracy as well as the forest type change for the past 20 years. LiDAR-derived metrics, especially height-based ones, proved useful for quantifying biomass/carbon stock. Keywords: Landsat TM, full waveform LiDAR, forest classification, forest change analysis, biomass, carbon stock, machine learning

  2. Tropical montane cloud forests: current threats and opportunities for their conservation and sustainable management in Mexico.

    PubMed

    Toledo-Aceves, Tarin; Meave, Jorge A; González-Espinosa, Mario; Ramírez-Marcial, Neptalí

    2011-03-01

    Tropical montane cloud forests (TMCF) are among the most threatened ecosystems globally in spite of their high strategic value for sustainable development due to the key role played by these forests in hydrological cycle maintenance and as reservoirs of endemic biodiversity. Resources for effective conservation and management programs are rarely sufficient, and criteria must be applied to prioritize TMCF for conservation action. This paper reports a priority analysis of the 13 main regions of TMCF distribution in Mexico, based on four criteria: (1) forest quality, (2) threats to forest permanence, (3) threats to forest integrity, and (4) opportunities for conservation. Due to the diverse socio-environmental conditions of the local communities living in Mexican TMCF regions, their associated social characteristics were also evaluated to provide a background for the planning of conservation actions. A set of indicators was defined for the measurement of each criterion. To assign priority values for subregions within each main region, an international team of 40 participants evaluated all the indicators using multicriteria decision-making analysis. This procedure enabled the identification of 15 subregions of critical priority, 17 of high priority, and 10 of medium priority; three more were not analysed due to lack of information. The evaluation revealed a number of subjects that had hitherto been undetected and that may prove useful for prioritization efforts in other regions where TMCF is similarly documented and faces equally severe threats. Based on this analysis, key recommendations are outlined to advance conservation objectives in those TMCF areas that are subjected to high pressure on forest resources.

  3. A stand-replacing fire history in upper montane forests of the southern Rocky Mountains

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Margolis, E.Q.; Swetnam, T.W.; Allen, C.D.

    2007-01-01

    Dendroecological techniques were applied to reconstruct stand-replacing fire history in upper montane forests in northern New Mexico and southern Colorado. Fourteen stand-replacing fires were dated to 8 unique fire years (1842-1901) using four lines of evidence at each of 12 sites within the upper Rio Grande Basin. The four lines of evidence were (i) quaking aspen (Populus tremuloides Michx.) inner-ring dates, (ii) fire-killed conifer bark-ring dates, (iii) tree-ring width changes or other morphological indicators of injury, and (iv) fire scars. The annual precision of dating allowed the identification of synchronous stand-replacing fire years among the sites, and co-occurrence with regional surface fire events previously reconstructed from a network of fire scar collections in lower elevation pine forests across the southwestern United States. Nearly all of the synchronous stand-replacing and surface fire years coincided with severe droughts, because climate variability created regional conditions where stand-replacing fires and surface fires burned across ecosystems. Reconstructed stand-replacing fires that predate substantial Anglo-American settlement in this region provide direct evidence that stand-replacing fires were a feature of high-elevation forests before extensive and intensive land-use practices (e.g., logging, railroad, and mining) began in the late 19th century. ?? 2007 NRC.

  4. Role of Possible Soil toxicity in Die back of Montane Forests in Sri Lanka.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ranasinghe, P. N.; Fernando, R.; Wimalasena, R. N.; Ekanayake, S. P.

    2008-12-01

    Rapid dying back of Tropical Upper Montane Rain forests of Sri Lanka which are considered as "Biodiversity Hotspots" is a nationally as well as globally important environmental issue. Although various hypotheses were tested during recent past, nothing could be proved except the possible involvement of soil toxicity due to excess levels of certain elements. This study investigated the extractable soil trace and major element levels in 3 pilot plots situated in dieback and healthy forests. Based on the results, Al, Mn, Fe and Pb concentrations in 30 individuals of 08 most susceptible plant species at different dieback stages and in soils in the immediate vicinity in Hakgala Strict Nature Reserve of Sri Lanka were determined in order to recognize the contribution of these element in forest die back. Collected Plant leaves were analyzed for total element levels and soils were analyzed for the extractable element levels. This study reveals the presence of high DTPA extractable Pb (0.6 - 2.4 ppm), Mn (1.7-57.2ppm), Fe (48.1- 372.1ppm) and KCl extractable Al (0.7-390.8 ppm) in soils. The most important observation was the presence of high accumulations of Pb (2.2-36.3 ppm) and Al (18.9 - 20047.6 ppm) in plant leaves which are high above the normal range. Acidic conditions in soils (pH 4.2-5.6) may increase Al+3 from Al bearing feldspar rich soils. Increased soil acidity due to lowering the pH of precipitation by air pollution may also contribute in dissolution of toxic Al+3. Extractable Soil Pb levels are higher on wind exposed slope areas. Increased Pb levels in soils on slope areas, differences between total and extractable soil Pb levels, amounts of washable Pb on leaves before and after the banning of Pb containing gasoline usage and comparisons of Pb levels in plants with known Pb polluted areas of the country prove that air pollution could be the main Pb source in this montane forests soils. Although no direct relationship could be recognized between element levels

  5. Leaf litter decomposition rates increase with rising mean annual temperature in Hawaiian tropical montane wet forests.

    PubMed

    Bothwell, Lori D; Selmants, Paul C; Giardina, Christian P; Litton, Creighton M

    2014-01-01

    Decomposing litter in forest ecosystems supplies nutrients to plants, carbon to heterotrophic soil microorganisms and is a large source of CO2 to the atmosphere. Despite its essential role in carbon and nutrient cycling, the temperature sensitivity of leaf litter decay in tropical forest ecosystems remains poorly resolved, especially in tropical montane wet forests where the warming trend may be amplified compared to tropical wet forests at lower elevations. We quantified leaf litter decomposition rates along a highly constrained 5.2 °C mean annual temperature (MAT) gradient in tropical montane wet forests on the Island of Hawaii. Dominant vegetation, substrate type and age, soil moisture, and disturbance history are all nearly constant across this gradient, allowing us to isolate the effect of rising MAT on leaf litter decomposition and nutrient release. Leaf litter decomposition rates were a positive linear function of MAT, causing the residence time of leaf litter on the forest floor to decline by ∼31 days for each 1 °C increase in MAT. Our estimate of the Q 10 temperature coefficient for leaf litter decomposition was 2.17, within the commonly reported range for heterotrophic organic matter decomposition (1.5-2.5) across a broad range of ecosystems. The percentage of leaf litter nitrogen (N) remaining after six months declined linearly with increasing MAT from ∼88% of initial N at the coolest site to ∼74% at the warmest site. The lack of net N immobilization during all three litter collection periods at all MAT plots indicates that N was not limiting to leaf litter decomposition, regardless of temperature. These results suggest that leaf litter decay in tropical montane wet forests may be more sensitive to rising MAT than in tropical lowland wet forests, and that increased rates of N release from decomposing litter could delay or prevent progressive N limitation to net primary productivity with climate warming.

  6. Life in the clouds: are tropical montane cloud forests responding to changes in climate?

    PubMed

    Hu, Jia; Riveros-Iregui, Diego A

    2016-04-01

    The humid tropics represent only one example of the many places worldwide where anthropogenic disturbance and climate change are quickly affecting the feedbacks between water and trees. In this article, we address the need for a more long-term perspective on the effects of climate change on tropical montane cloud forests (TMCF) in order to fully assess the combined vulnerability and long-term response of tropical trees to changes in precipitation regimes, including cloud immersion. We first review the ecophysiological benefits that cloud water interception offers to trees in TMCF and then examine current climatological evidence that suggests changes in cloud base height and impending changes in cloud immersion for TMCF. Finally, we propose an experimental approach to examine the long-term dynamics of tropical trees in TMCF in response to environmental conditions on decade-to-century time scales. This information is important to assess the vulnerability and long-term response of TMCF to changes in cloud cover and fog frequency and duration.

  7. Instream wood loads in montane forest streams of the Colorado Front Range, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jackson, Karen J.; Wohl, Ellen

    2015-04-01

    Although several studies examine instream wood loads and associated geomorphic effects in streams of subalpine forests in the U.S. Southern Rocky Mountains, little is known of instream wood loads in lower elevation, montane forests of the region. We compare instream wood loads and geomorphic effects between streams draining montane forest stands of differing age (old growth versus younger) and disturbance history (healthy versus infested by mountain pine beetles). We examined forest stand characteristics, instream wood load, channel geometry, pool volume, and sediment storage in 33 pool-riffle or plane-bed stream reaches with objectives of determining whether (i) instream wood and geomorphic effects differed significantly among old-growth, younger, healthy, and beetle-infested forest stands and (ii) wood loads correlated with valley and channel characteristics. Wood loads were standardized to drainage area, stream gradient, reach length, bankfull width, and floodplain area. Streams flowing through old-growth forests had significantly larger wood loads and logjam volumes (pairwise t-tests), as well as logjam frequencies (Kruskal-Wallis test), residual pool volume, and fine sediment storage around wood than streams flowing through younger forests. Wood loads in streams draining beetle-infested forest did not differ significantly from those in healthy forest stands, but best subset regression models indicated that elevation, stand age, and beetle infestation were the best predictors of wood loads in channels and on floodplains, suggesting that beetle infestation is affecting instream wood characteristics. Wood loads are larger than values from subalpine streams in the same region and jams are larger and more closely spaced. We interpret these differences to reflect greater wood piece mobility in subalpine zone streams. Stand age appears to exert the dominant influence on instream wood characteristics within pool-riffle streams in the study area rather than beetle

  8. Impacts of Alien Tree Invasion on Evapotranspiration in Tropical Montane Cloud Forest in Hawai'i

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giambelluca, T. W.; Asner, G. P.; Martin, R. E.; Nullet, M. M.; Huang, M.; Delay, J. K.; Mudd, R. G.; Takahashi, M.

    2007-12-01

    Hawaiian tropical montane cloud forests (TMCFs) are ecologically and hydrologically valuable zones. TMCFs in Hawai'i serve as refugia for the remaining intact native terrestrial plant and animal ecosystems, and are major sources of hydrologic input to surface water and groundwater systems. Invasion of alien tree species, with obvious effects on the ecological integrity of TMCFs, also threatens to impact the hydrological services these forests provide. Much speculation has been made about the hydrological effects of replacing native forest tree species with alien trees in Hawai'i, but until now no measurements have been made to test these assertions. We established two study sites, each equipped with eddy covariance and other micrometeorological instrumentation, one within native Metrosideros polymorpha forest and the other at a site heavily invaded by Psidium cattleianum, in the cloud forest zone of Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park. We are conducting measurements of stand-level evapotranspiration, transpiration (using sapflow techniques), energy balance, throughfall, stemflow, and soil moisture at each site. Preliminary analysis of these measurements shows that the fraction of available energy used for evapotranspiration (ET Fraction) at the native site is much higher for wet canopy conditions. The ET Fraction at the native site has an annual cycle corresponding to the annual cycle in leaf area. Deviations from the annual cycle are more closely related to variations in canopy wetness than to variations in soil moisture. Overall, ET as a function of available energy is 27% higher at the invaded site than the native site. The difference in ET between the two sites is especially pronounced during dry canopy periods, during which the ET Fraction is 53% higher at the invaded site than the native site. Sapflow measurements using heat balance collars show that leaf-area-specific transpiration is much greater in invasive P. cattleianum trees than in remnant native M

  9. Variation in Montane Forest Transpiration Dormancy and Seasonality Along an Elevation Gradient.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barnard, D. M.; Barnard, H. R.; Molotch, N. P.

    2015-12-01

    Forest transpiration is a primary component of water- and energy-balance studies as a mechanism for mass and energy transfer. During winter, however, there is a period of transpiration quiescence, due to lower air temperatures and physiological inactivity. While the importance of transpiration is well understood, the cues that initiate transpiration in the winter-spring-summer transition, and their variability across gradients of elevation and climate are not. The goal of this study was to characterize seasonal variability in daily transpiration activity (DTA) and timing of winter transpiration dormancy release among eight study sites across an elevation gradient. We defined DTA as the daily coefficient of determination (i.e. R2) of linear regressions between 30-minute measurements of vapor pressure deficit (VPD) and tree sapflow. Transpiration dormancy date (EOD) was defined as the day that DTA became consistently > 0.3. Across sites, DTA was low (i.e. < 0.15) in winter, higher in the spring reaching a peak in early summer, indicating VPD and transpiration decouple in the winter but are coupled transiently in the spring. Lower elevation sites had more days with high DTA (i.e. > 0.3) than higher sites (82% and 49% respectively). Among sites, DTA was significantly correlated with air temperature and soil temperature (p < 0.05 for both). Site EODs were also significantly correlated with site elevation (p < 0.05); with the lower elevation sites experiencing EODs > 40 days earlier than higher elevation sites in 2013 and 2014 but only by 25 days earlier in 2015 due to cooler temperatures in May and above-average precipitation. Correlations between EOD and meteorological and edaphic conditions were inconsistent among study sites, requiring further study. However, in fall/winter of water year 2015 there were two distinct warm periods (20-Nov to 9-Dec and 5-Jan to 10-Feb) that temporarily initiated transpiration activity - the magnitude of which was correlated with site

  10. Nutrient enrichment effects on mycorrhizal fungi in an Andean tropical montane Forest.

    PubMed

    Delavaux, Camille S; Camenzind, Tessa; Homeier, Jürgen; Jiménez-Paz, Rosa; Ashton, Mark; Queenborough, Simon A

    2016-12-06

    Nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) deposition are increasing worldwide largely due to increased fertilizer use and fossil fuel combustion. Most work with N and P deposition in natural ecosystems has focused on temperate, highly industrialized, regions. Tropical regions are becoming more developed, releasing large amounts of these nutrients into the atmosphere. Nutrient enrichment in nutrient-poor systems such as tropical montane forest can represent a relatively large shift in nutrient availability, especially for sensitive microorganisms such as arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF). These symbiotic fungi are particularly critical, given their key role in ecosystem processes affecting plant community structure and function.To better understand the consequences of nutrient deposition in plant communities, a long-term nutrient addition experiment was set up in a tropical montane forest in the Andes of southern Ecuador. In this study, we investigated the impacts of 7 years of elevated N and P on AMF root colonization potential (AMF-RCP) through a greenhouse bait plant method in which we quantified root colonization. We also examined the relationship between AMF-RCP and rarefied tree diversity.After 7 years of nutrient addition, AMF-RCP was negatively correlated with soil P, positively correlated with soil N, and positively correlated with rarefied tree diversity. Our results show that AMF in this tropical montane forest are directly affected by soil N and P concentrations, but may also be indirectly impacted by shifts in rarefied tree diversity. Our research also highlights the need to fully understand the benefits and drawbacks of using different sampling methods (e.g., AMF-RCP versus direct root sampling) to robustly examine AMF-plant interactions in the future.

  11. Atmospheric organic and inorganic nitrogen inputs to coastal urban and montane Atlantic Forest sites in southeastern Brazil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Souza, Patricia A.; Ponette-González, Alexandra G.; de Mello, William Z.; Weathers, Kathleen C.; Santos, Isimar A.

    2015-06-01

    Tropical regions are currently experiencing changes in the quantity and form of nitrogen (N) deposition as a result of urban and industrial emissions. We quantified atmospheric N inputs to two coastal urban and two montane (400 m and 1000 m) Atlantic Forest sites downwind of the Metropolitan Region of Rio de Janeiro (MRRJ), Brazil, from August 2008 to August 2009. Concentrations of total dissolved nitrogen (TDN), dissolved inorganic nitrogen (DIN) and urea were measured in bulk precipitation at all sites, as well as in canopy throughfall in the lower montane forest. Dissolved organic nitrogen (DON) was calculated as the difference between TDN and DIN (NH4+ + NO3- + NO2-). Annual volume-weighted mean bulk concentrations of all N species were higher at the coastal urban than montane forest sites, with DON accounting for 32-56% and 26-32%, respectively, of the TDN concentration in bulk precipitation. Bulk deposition of TDN ranged 12.1-17.2 kg N ha- 1 yr- 1 and tended to decrease with increasing distance from the coastal urban region. In the lower montane forest, throughfall TDN flux, 34.3 kg N ha- 1 yr- 1, was over 2-fold higher than bulk TDN deposition, and DON comprised 57% of the total N deposited by throughfall to the forest soil. Urea comprised 27% of DON in throughfall compared to up to 100% in bulk precipitation. Our findings show that DON is an important, yet understudied, component of TDN deposition in tropical forest regions, comprising one-third to greater than one-half of the N deposited in rainfall and throughfall. Further, in this lower montane Atlantic Forest site, throughfall DIN flux was 1.5-3 fold higher than the suggested empirical critical load for humid tropical forests, highlighting the potential for increasing N pollution emitted from the MRRJ to impact N cycling in adjacent ecosystems.

  12. Carbon budget of Nyungwe Tropical Montane Rain Forest in Central Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nyirambangutse, B.; Zibera, E.; Uwizeye, F. K.; Hansson, L.; Nsabimana, D.; Pleijel, H.; Uddling, J.; Wallin, G.

    2015-12-01

    African tropical rainforests host rich biodiversity and play many roles at different scales such as local, regional and global, in the functioning of the earth system. Despite that the African tropical forests are the world's second largest, it has been neglected in terms of understanding the storage and fluxes of carbon and other nutrients. The question of whether this biome is a net sink or source of atmospheric CO2 is still not answered, and little is known concerning the climate change response. Tropical montane forests are even more poorly sampled compared with their importance. Deeper understanding of these ecosystems is required to provide insights on how they might react under global change. To answer questions related to these issues for African tropical montane forests, 15 permanent 0.5 ha plots were established in 2011 in Nyungwe tropical montane rainforest gazetted as a National Park to protect its extensive floral and faunal diversity. The plots are arranged along an east-westerly transect and includes both primary and secondary forest communities. The study is connected to the global ecosystem monitoring network (GEM, http://gem.tropicalforests.ox.ac.uk/). The aim is to characterize spatial and temporal heterogeneity of carbon and nutrient dynamics processes. The role of microclimate, topography, human disturbances, and plant species to the variability of these pools and processes will be explored. We compare stocks and fluxes of carbon and nutrients of the secondary and primary forest communities. The carbon stock are determined by an inventory of height and diameter at breast height (dbh) of all trees with a dbh above 5 cm, wood density, biomass of understory vegetation, leaf area index, standing and fallen dead wood, fine root biomass and organic content of various soil layers (litter, organic and mineral soil down to 45 cm depth). The carbon fluxes are determined by measurements of photosynthesis and respiration of leaves, above and below ground

  13. Agaricales of the Hawaiian Islands 9. Five new white-spored species from native montane wet forests.

    PubMed

    Desjardin, Dennis E; Hemmes, Don E

    2011-01-01

    Five new species of white-spored agarics are described from native montane wet forests in the Hawaiian Islands as follows: Callistosporium vinosobrunneum, Marasmiellus hapuuarum, Marasmius koae, Mycena marasmielloides, Pleurocybella ohiae. Comprehensive descriptions, illustrations and comparisons with phenetically similar species are provided. An itemization of the 24 known putatively endemic agarics described from this unique habitat is provided.

  14. Heat Storage and Energy Closure in Two Tropical Montane Forests in Hawaii

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mudd, R. G.; Giambelluca, T. W.; Huang, M.

    2012-12-01

    To date, eddy covariance observations of evapotranspiration (ET) in tropical rainforest ecosystems are limited and thorough assessments of such observations are rare. In this study, we present a detailed evaluation of eddy covariance data collected at two sites in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii, for a 34 month period to evaluate the importance of biomass and air heat storage to the energy balance and determine site specific energy closure characteristics. One site is located in a native Hawaiian tropical montane forest dominated by Metrosideros polymorpha (Nahuku), while the other is located in a nearby forest (Olaa) that has been partially invaded by strawberry guava (Psidium cattleianum). Vertical and radial distribution of all biomass components were evaluated from detailed stand surveys, biomass samples, allometric relationships, wood density, fresh to dry weight ratios of plant materials, and temperature measurements of stem biomass. Total fresh biomass was estimated to be 69.8 ± 11.7 kg m-2 and 75.9 ± 16.6 kg m-2 at Nahuku and Olaa, respectively, and the contribution of separate biomass components to energy closure were evaluated in detail. Despite statistically similar fresh biomass between stands, energy storage was found to be significantly greater at the forest site with P. cattleianum tree invasion (Olaa) than at the native forest stand (Nahuku). The difference was attributed to a higher proportion of smaller stems at Olaa, absorbing and releasing more heat for a given mass. Inclusion of biomass and air heat storage in the energy balance improved the relative energy closure, the slope of the linear regression (forced through the origin) of the sum of latent and sensible heat fluxes measured above the canopies for each 30-minute period from 0.767 to 0.805 at Nahuku and from 0.918 to 0.997 at Olaa. The mean absolute energy imbalance, the mean of the differences between the available energy and the sum of latent and sensible heat fluxes for each

  15. Trait-based community assembly of understory palms along a soil nutrient gradient in a lower montane tropical forest.

    PubMed

    Andersen, Kelly M; Endara, Maria Jose; Turner, Benjamin L; Dalling, James W

    2012-02-01

    Two opposing niche processes have been shown to shape the relationship between ecological traits and species distribution patterns: habitat filtering and competitive exclusion. Habitat filtering is expected to select for similar traits among coexisting species that share similar habitat conditions, whereas competitive exclusion is expected to limit the ecological similarity of coexisting species leading to trait differentiation. Here, we explore how functional traits vary among 19 understory palm species that differ in their distribution across a gradient of soil resource availability in lower montane forest in western Panama. We found evidence that habitat filtering influences species distribution patterns and shifts community-wide and intraspecific trait values. Differences in trait values among sites were more strongly related to soil nutrient availability than to variation in light or rainfall. Soil nutrient availability explained a significant amount of variation in site mean trait values for 4 of 15 functional traits. Site mean values of leaf nitrogen and phosphorus increased 37 and 64%, respectively, leaf carbon:nitrogen decreased 38%, and specific leaf area increased 29% with increasing soil nutrient availability. For Geonoma cuneata, the only species occurring at all sites, leaf phosphorus increased 34% and nitrogen:phosphorus decreased 42% with increasing soil nutrients. In addition to among-site variation, most morphological and leaf nutrient traits differed among coexisting species within sites, suggesting these traits may be important for niche differentiation. Hence, a combination of habitat filtering due to turnover in species composition and intraspecific variation along a soil nutrient gradient and site-specific niche differentiation among co-occurring species influences understory palm community structure in this lower montane forest.

  16. Dispersal traits determine passive restoration trajectory of a Nigerian montane forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barnes, Andrew D.; Chapman, Hazel M.

    2014-04-01

    Passive restoration methods offer great promise for tropical regions where resources are limited but the success of such efforts can be variable. Using trait-based theory, we investigated the likely trajectories of passive restoration efforts in a degraded Nigerian montane forest system recently protected from burning and cattle grazing. We quantified the density, species richness, and functional trait dispersion of dispersed seeds and seedling communities at increasing distances from the forest edge. We then determined which plant traits are responsible for colonisation by quantifying changes in functional-trait dispersion and relative frequencies of dispersal-linked traits with increasing distance from the forest. We found a rapid decrease in density and species richness, and significant species turnover in both seeds and seedlings just beyond the forest edge. This was mirrored by a significant decline in functional-trait dispersion and a shift in the relative frequencies of dispersal-linked traits. These findings suggest that the reassembly of plant communities adjacent to remnant forest is dependent on functional traits present in these remnant source populations, providing support for the incorporation of trait-based theory in restoration management.

  17. Structure of the epiphyte community in a tropical montane forest in SW China.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Mingxu; Geekiyanage, Nalaka; Xu, Jianchu; Khin, Myo Myo; Nurdiana, Dian Ridwan; Paudel, Ekananda; Harrison, Rhett Daniel

    2015-01-01

    Vascular epiphytes are an understudied and particularly important component of tropical forest ecosystems. However, owing to the difficulties of access, little is known about the properties of epiphyte-host tree communities and the factors structuring them, especially in Asia. We investigated factors structuring the vascular epiphyte-host community and its network properties in a tropical montane forest in Xishuangbanna, SW China. Vascular epiphytes were surveyed in six plots located in mature forests. Six host and four micro-site environmental factors were investigated. Epiphyte diversity was strongly correlated with host size (DBH, diameter at breast height), while within hosts the highest epiphyte diversity was in the middle canopy and epiphyte diversity was significantly higher in sites with canopy soil or a moss mat than on bare bark. DBH, elevation and stem height explained 22% of the total variation in the epiphyte species assemblage among hosts, and DBH was the most important factor which alone explained 6% of the variation. Within hosts, 51% of the variation in epiphyte assemblage composition was explained by canopy position and substrate, and the most important single factor was substrate which accounted for 16% of the variation. Analysis of network properties indicated that the epiphyte host community was highly nested, with a low level of epiphyte specialization, and an almost even interaction strength between epiphytes and host trees. Together, these results indicate that large trees harbor a substantial proportion of the epiphyte community in this forest.

  18. Structure of the Epiphyte Community in a Tropical Montane Forest in SW China

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Mingxu; Geekiyanage, Nalaka; Xu, Jianchu; Khin, Myo Myo; Nurdiana, Dian Ridwan; Paudel, Ekananda; Harrison, Rhett Daniel

    2015-01-01

    Vascular epiphytes are an understudied and particularly important component of tropical forest ecosystems. However, owing to the difficulties of access, little is known about the properties of epiphyte-host tree communities and the factors structuring them, especially in Asia. We investigated factors structuring the vascular epiphyte-host community and its network properties in a tropical montane forest in Xishuangbanna, SW China. Vascular epiphytes were surveyed in six plots located in mature forests. Six host and four micro-site environmental factors were investigated. Epiphyte diversity was strongly correlated with host size (DBH, diameter at breast height), while within hosts the highest epiphyte diversity was in the middle canopy and epiphyte diversity was significantly higher in sites with canopy soil or a moss mat than on bare bark. DBH, elevation and stem height explained 22% of the total variation in the epiphyte species assemblage among hosts, and DBH was the most important factor which alone explained 6% of the variation. Within hosts, 51% of the variation in epiphyte assemblage composition was explained by canopy position and substrate, and the most important single factor was substrate which accounted for 16% of the variation. Analysis of network properties indicated that the epiphyte host community was highly nested, with a low level of epiphyte specialization, and an almost even interaction strength between epiphytes and host trees. Together, these results indicate that large trees harbor a substantial proportion of the epiphyte community in this forest. PMID:25856457

  19. Montane forest ecotones moved downslope in northeastern USA in spite of warming between 1984 and 2011.

    PubMed

    Foster, Jane R; D'Amato, Anthony W

    2015-12-01

    Ecotones are transition zones that form, in forests, where distinct forest types meet across a climatic gradient. In mountains, ecotones are compressed and act as potential harbingers of species shifts that accompany climate change. As the climate warms in New England, USA, high-elevation boreal forests are expected to recede upslope, with northern hardwood species moving up behind. Yet recent empirical studies present conflicting findings on this dynamic, reporting both rapid upward ecotonal shifts and concurrent increases in boreal species within the region. These discrepancies may result from the limited spatial extent of observations. We developed a method to model and map the montane forest ecotone using Landsat imagery to observe change at scales not possible for plot-based studies, covering mountain peaks over 39 000 km(2) . Our results show that ecotones shifted downward or stayed stable on most mountains between 1991 and 2010, but also shifted upward in some cases (13-15% slopes). On average, upper ecotone boundaries moved down -1.5 m yr(-1) in the Green Mountains, VT, and -1.3 m yr(-1) in the White Mountains, NH. These changes agree with remeasured forest inventory data from Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest, NH, and suggest that processes of boreal forest recovery from prior red spruce decline, or human land use and disturbance, may swamp out any signal of climate-mediated migration in this ecosystem. This approach represents a powerful framework for evaluating similar ecotonal dynamics in other mountainous regions of the globe.

  20. Ecosystem carbon storage does not vary with mean annual temperature in Hawaiian tropical montane wet forests.

    PubMed

    Selmants, Paul C; Litton, Creighton M; Giardina, Christian P; Asner, Gregory P

    2014-09-01

    Theory and experiment agree that climate warming will increase carbon fluxes between terrestrial ecosystems and the atmosphere. The effect of this increased exchange on terrestrial carbon storage is less predictable, with important implications for potential feedbacks to the climate system. We quantified how increased mean annual temperature (MAT) affects ecosystem carbon storage in above- and belowground live biomass and detritus across a well-constrained 5.2 °C MAT gradient in tropical montane wet forests on the Island of Hawaii. This gradient does not systematically vary in biotic or abiotic factors other than MAT (i.e. dominant vegetation, substrate type and age, soil water balance, and disturbance history), allowing us to isolate the impact of MAT on ecosystem carbon storage. Live biomass carbon did not vary predictably as a function of MAT, while detrital carbon declined by ~14 Mg of carbon ha(-1) for each 1 °C rise in temperature - a trend driven entirely by coarse woody debris and litter. The largest detrital pool, soil organic carbon, was the most stable with MAT and averaged 48% of total ecosystem carbon across the MAT gradient. Total ecosystem carbon did not vary significantly with MAT, and the distribution of ecosystem carbon between live biomass and detritus remained relatively constant across the MAT gradient at ~44% and ~56%, respectively. These findings suggest that in the absence of alterations to precipitation or disturbance regimes, the size and distribution of carbon pools in tropical montane wet forests will be less sensitive to rising MAT than predicted by ecosystem models. This article also provides needed detail on how individual carbon pools and ecosystem-level carbon storage will respond to future warming.

  1. The Seasonal and Diurnal Patterns of net Ecosystem CO2 Exchange in a Subtropical Montane Cloud Forest.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chu, H.; Lai, C.; Wu, C.; Hsia, Y.

    2008-12-01

    CO2 fluxes were measured by an open/closed path eddy covariance system at a natural regenerated 50-years-old yellow cypress (Chamaecyparis obtusa var. formosana) forest at Chi-Lan Mountain site (CLM site, 24°35'N, 121°25'E, 1650 m elevation), north-eastern Taiwan. CLM site is located at a relative uniform south-eastern-facing valley slope (15°) characterized with year round fog occurrence and diurnal mountain-valley wind and can be classified as subtropical montane cloud forest. Based on measurement from July 2007 to June 2008, seasonal and diurnal patterns of CO2 fluxes were described and patterns under different cloudiness and foggy conditions were presented. Comparing with other cypress forests in temperate region, there is only a weak seasonal pattern of the CO2 fluxes at CLM site. Throughout the year, average incident photosynthetically active radiation in summer was almost the double of that in winter, whereas the difference of mean daytime CO2 fluxes among seasons was much less than the seasonal light difference. During summer when light intensity was higher, mean daytime CO2 fluxes reached -7.5 μmol/m2/s in July and -8.8 μmol/m2/s in August. As heavy fog accounted for 64% and 67% of the time in November and February, mean daytime CO2 fluxes dropped to -6.9 and -6.1 μmol/m2/s respectively. With comparable higher incident radiation intensity (>1000 μmol/m2/s), the CO2 fluxes were higher in overcast days than in clear days. In July 2007, clear days accounted for 30% of the month, light intensity reached its peak at midday, and however, CO2 fluxes didn't reach its highest value in the meanwhile. Canopy conductance calculated from the Penman-Monteith equation and measured latent heat fluxes both showed a midday depression at clear days, which indicated the regulation of transpiration by plant physiological mechanism. With comparable lower incident radiation intensity (<1000 μmol/m2/s), the CO2 fluxes were higher in overcast days than in foggy days. The

  2. Vulnerability of island tropical montane cloud forests to climate change, with special reference to East Maui, Hawaii

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Loope, Lloyd L.; Giambelluca, Thomas W.

    1998-01-01

    Island tropical montane cloud forests may be among the most sensitive of the world's ecosystems to global climate change. Measurements in and above a montane cloud forest on East Maui, Hawaii, document steep microclimatic gradients. Relatively small climate-driven shifts in patterns of atmospheric circulation are likely to trigger major local changes in rainfall, cloud cover, and humidity. Increased interannual variability in precipitation and hurricane incidence would provide additional stresses on island biota that are highly vulnerable to disturbance-related invasion of non-native species. Because of the exceptional sensitivity of these microclimates and forests to change, they may provide valuable ‘listening posts’ for detecting the onset of human-induced global climate change.

  3. The relationship between soil geochemistry and die back of montane forests in Sri Lanka: a case study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ranasinghe, P. N.; Dissanayake, C. B.; Samarasinghe, D. V. N.; Galappatti, R.

    2007-01-01

    Tropical montane forests of Sri Lanka form a unique ecosystem with more than 50% of endemic plant species. It has been noted that trees, belonging to different size and age classes of these forest, have been dying due to a yet unknown factor. This phenomenon was first observed in the Horton Plains National Park, which is a high plateau, composed of tropical montane forests. Later dying of forests were observed at several areas including Hakgala montane forest. Physical parameters trace nutrients as well as toxic element concentrations in soils, were studied in order to identify the possible geochemical factors behind the forest die back. Systematic soil sampling was carried out covering the entire Horton Plains National Park and random samples were collected from Hakgala montane forest. Samples were analyzed for available Fe, Mn, Zn, Cu, Ni, Cd, Al and Pb using standard colorimetric and atomic absorption spectrometric procedures. Physical parameters such as pH, moisture content, and conductivity of the samples were also measured. Among extractable micro-nutrients Cu and Zn, and Ni show no deficiency or excess levels. However, the recorded available high concentrations of Fe, Mn and Al can be toxic to certain montane plant species. Acidic moist soil of the area may enhance the toxic effects of these elements. Possible source of these elements should be the underground lithology of the area. According to the results obtained, there is a relationship between forest die back and high Pb concentrations. The same phenomenon was also observed in the Hakgala forest. The distribution pattern of Pb in the Horton Plains coincides well with the die back distribution pattern. The observed Pb values at Horton Plains and Hakgala are almost similar to values observed at Pannipitiya and Dombagaskanda locations, which are located close to main roads carrying heavy traffic. It is quite possible therefore, that Pb toxicity may be a significant factor behind the forest die back even

  4. The potential negative impacts of global climate change on tropical montane cloud forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Foster, Pru

    2001-10-01

    Nearly every aspect of the cloud forest is affected by regular cloud immersion, from the hydrological cycle to the species of plants and animals within the forest. Since the altitude band of cloud formation on tropical mountains is limited, the tropical montane cloud forest occurs in fragmented strips and has been likened to island archipelagoes. This isolation and uniqueness promotes explosive speciation, exceptionally high endemism, and a great sensitivity to climate. Global climate change threatens all ecosystems through temperature and rainfall changes, with a typical estimate for altitude shifts in the climatic optimum for mountain ecotones of hundreds of meters by the time of CO 2 doubling. This alone suggests complete replacement of many of the narrow altitude range cloud forests by lower altitude ecosystems, as well as the expulsion of peak residing cloud forests into extinction. However, the cloud forest will also be affected by other climate changes, in particular changes in cloud formation. A number of global climate models suggest a reduction in low level cloudiness with the coming climate changes, and one site in particular, Monteverde, Costa Rica, appears to already be experiencing a reduction in cloud immersion. The coming climate changes appear very likely to upset the current dynamic equilibrium of the cloud forest. Results will include biodiversity loss, altitude shifts in species' ranges and subsequent community reshuffling, and possibly forest death. Difficulties for cloud forest species to survive in climate-induced migrations include no remaining location with a suitable climate, no pristine location to colonize, migration rates or establishment rates that cannot keep up with climate change rates and new species interactions. We review previous cloud forest species redistributions in the paleo-record in light of the coming changes. The characteristic epiphytes of the cloud forest play an important role in the light, hydrological and nutrient

  5. Epiphyte Water Retention and Evaporation in Native and Invaded Tropical Montane Cloud Forests in Hawaii

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mudd, R. G.; Giambelluca, T. W.

    2006-12-01

    Epiphyte water retention was quantified at two montane cloud forest sites in Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park, one native and the other invaded by an alien tree species. Water storage elements measured included all epiphytic mosses, leafy liverworts, and filmy ferns. Tree surface area was estimated and a careful survey was taken to account for all epiphytes in the sample area of the forest. Samples were collected and analyzed in the lab for epiphyte water retention capacity (WRC). Based on the volume of the different kinds of epiphytes and their corresponding WRC, forest stand water retention capacity for each survey area was estimated. Evaporation from the epiphyte mass was quantified using artificial reference samples attached to trees that were weighed at intervals to determine changes in stored water on days without significant rain or fog. In addition, a soil moisture sensor was wrapped in an epiphyte sample and left in the forest for a 6-day period. Epiphyte biomass at the Native Site and Invaded Site were estimated to be 2.89 t ha-1 and 1.05 t ha-1, respectively. Average WRC at the Native Site and Invaded Site were estimated at 1.45 mm and 0.68 mm, respectively. The difference is likely due to the presence of the invasive Psidium cattleianum at the Invaded Site because its smooth stem surface is unable to support a significant epiphytic layer. The evaporation rate from the epiphyte mass near WSC for the forest stand at the Native Site was measured at 0.38 mm day-1, which represented 10.6 % of the total ET from the forest canopy at the Native Site during the period. The above research has been recently complemented by a thorough investigation of the WSC of all water storage elements (tree stems, tree leaves, shrubs, grasses, litter, fallen branches, and epiphytes) at six forested sites at different elevations within, above, and below the zone of frequent cloud-cover. The goal of this study was to create an inexpensive and efficient methodology for acquiring

  6. Mercury concentrations in Bicknell's thrush and other insectivorous passerines in Montane forests of northeastern North America.

    PubMed

    Rimmer, Christopher C; Mcfarland, Kent P; Evers, David C; Miller, Eric K; Aubry, Yves; Busby, Daniel; Taylor, Robert J

    2005-03-01

    additional depurating mechanisms through eggs. Older male Bicknell's thrushes that breed in New England are therefore likely at greatest risk. Mechanisms for Hg methylation in montane areas without standing water are not yet fully understood. However, recent studies indicate that MeHg is present in forest tree leaves and leaf detritus; saturated soils and other moist microhabitats may also contribute to MeHg availability. Our finding of a correlation between regional litterfall Hg flux patterns and Bicknell's thrush blood Hg concentrations demonstrates on-site availability of MeHg. Further investigations into MeHg availability in montane environments are recommended to assess risk to insectivorous passerines, particularly the Bicknell's thrush.

  7. Influence of recent bark beetle outbreak on fire severity and postfire tree regeneration in montane Douglas-fir forests.

    PubMed

    Harvey, Brian J; Donato, Daniel C; Romme, William H; Turner, Monica G

    2013-11-01

    Understanding how disturbances interact to shape ecosystems is a key challenge in ecology. In forests of western North America, the degree to which recent bark beetle outbreaks and subsequent fires may be linked (e.g., outbreak severity affects fire severity) and/ or whether these two disturbances produce compound effects on postfire succession is of widespread interest. These interactions remain unresolved, largely because field data from actual wildfires following beetle outbreaks are lacking. We studied the 2008 Gunbarrel Fire, which burned 27 200 ha in Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii) forests that experienced a bark beetle outbreak 4-13 years prefire ("gray stage," after trees have died and needles have dropped), to determine whether outbreak severity influenced subsequent fire severity and postfire tree regeneration. In 85 sample plots we recorded prefire stand structure and outbreak severity; multiple measures of canopy and forest-floor fire severity; and postfire tree seedling density. Prefire outbreak severity was not related to any measure of fire severity except for mean bole scorch, which declined slightly with increasing outbreak severity. Instead, fire severity varied with topography and burning conditions (proxy for weather at time of fire). Postfire Douglas-fir regeneration was low, with tree seedlings absent in 65% of plots. Tree seedlings were abundant in plots of low fire severity that also had experienced low outbreak severity (mean = 1690 seedlings/ha), suggesting a dual filter on tree regeneration. Although bark beetles and fire collectively reduced live basal area to < 5% and increased snag density to > 2000% of pre-outbreak levels, the lack of relationship between beetle outbreak and fire severity suggests that these disturbances were not linked. Nonetheless, effects on postfire tree regeneration suggest compound disturbance interactions that contribute to the structural heterogeneity characteristic of mid/lower montane forests.

  8. [Comparison of heavy metal elements between natural and plantation forests in a subtropical Montane forest].

    PubMed

    Nie, Ming; Wan, Jia-Rong; Chen, Xiao-Feng; Wang, Li; Li, Bo; Chen, Jia-Kuan

    2011-11-01

    Heavy metals as one of major pollutants is harmful to the health of forest ecosystems. In the present paper, the concentrations of thirteen heavy metals (Fe, Al, Ti, Cr, Cu, Mn, V, Zn, Ni, Co, Pb, Se and Cd) were compared between natural and plantation forests in the Mt. Lushan by ICP-AES and atomic absorption spectroscopy. The results suggest that the soil of natural forest had higher concentrations of Fe, Al, Ti, Cu, Mn, V, Zn, Ni, Co, Pb, Se, and Cd than the plantation forest except for Cr. The soil of natural forest had a higher level of heavy metals than that of the plantation forest as a whole. This might be due to that the natural forest has longer age than the plantation forest, and fixed soil heavy metals take a longer period of time than the plantation forest.

  9. Topographic and Bioclimatic Determinants of the Occurrence of Forest and Grassland in Tropical Montane Forest-Grassland Mosaics of the Western Ghats, India.

    PubMed

    Das, Arundhati; Nagendra, Harini; Anand, Madhur; Bunyan, Milind

    2015-01-01

    The objective of this analysis was to identify topographic and bioclimatic factors that predict occurrence of forest and grassland patches within tropical montane forest-grassland mosaics. We further investigated whether interactions between topography and bioclimate are important in determining vegetation pattern, and assessed the role of spatial scale in determining the relative importance of specific topographic features. Finally, we assessed the role of elevation in determining the relative importance of diverse explanatory factors. The study area consists of the central and southern regions of the Western Ghats of Southern India, a global biodiversity hotspot. Random forests were used to assess prediction accuracy and predictor importance. Conditional inference classification trees were used to interpret predictor effects and examine potential interactions between predictors. GLMs were used to confirm predictor importance and assess the strength of interaction terms. Overall, topographic and bioclimatic predictors classified vegetation pattern with approximately 70% accuracy. Prediction accuracy was higher for grassland than forest, and for mosaics at higher elevations. Elevation was the most important predictor, with mosaics above 2000 m dominated largely by grassland. Relative topographic position measured at a local scale (within a 300 m neighbourhood) was another important predictor of vegetation pattern. In high elevation mosaics, northness and concave land surface curvature were important predictors of forest occurrence. Important bioclimatic predictors were: dry quarter precipitation, annual temperature range and the interaction between the two. The results indicate complex interactions between topography and bioclimate and among topographic variables. Elevation and topography have a strong influence on vegetation pattern in these mosaics. There were marked regional differences in the roles of various topographic and bioclimatic predictors across the

  10. Forest structure, stand composition, and climate-growth response in montane forests of Jiuzhaigou National Nature Reserve, China.

    PubMed

    Schwartz, Mark W; Dolanc, Christopher R; Gao, Hui; Strauss, Sharon Y; Schwartz, Ari C; Williams, John N; Tang, Ya

    2013-01-01

    Montane forests of western China provide an opportunity to establish baseline studies for climate change. The region is being impacted by climate change, air pollution, and significant human impacts from tourism. We analyzed forest stand structure and climate-growth relationships from Jiuzhaigou National Nature Reserve in northwestern Sichuan province, along the eastern edge of the Tibetan plateau. We conducted a survey to characterize forest stand diversity and structure in plots occurring between 2050 and 3350 m in elevation. We also evaluated seedling and sapling recruitment and tree-ring data from four conifer species to assess: 1) whether the forest appears in transition toward increased hardwood composition; 2) if conifers appear stressed by recent climate change relative to hardwoods; and 3) how growth of four dominant species responds to recent climate. Our study is complicated by clear evidence of 20(th) century timber extraction. Focusing on regions lacking evidence of logging, we found a diverse suite of conifers (Pinus, Abies, Juniperus, Picea, and Larix) strongly dominate the forest overstory. We found population size structures for most conifer tree species to be consistent with self-replacement and not providing evidence of shifting composition toward hardwoods. Climate-growth analyses indicate increased growth with cool temperatures in summer and fall. Warmer temperatures during the growing season could negatively impact conifer growth, indicating possible seasonal climate water deficit as a constraint on growth. In contrast, however, we found little relationship to seasonal precipitation. Projected warming does not yet have a discernible signal on trends in tree growth rates, but slower growth with warmer growing season climates suggests reduced potential future forest growth.

  11. A montane Mediterranean climate supports year-round photosynthesis and high forest biomass.

    PubMed

    Kelly, Anne E; Goulden, Michael L

    2016-04-01

    The mid-elevation forest of California's Sierra Nevada poses a bioclimatic paradox. Mid-elevation trees experience a montane Mediterranean climate, with near-freezing winter days and rain-free summers. The asynchrony between warmth and water input suggests low primary production, limited by photosynthetic dormancy in winter cold, and again in summer and early autumn with drought, yet this forest is characterized by tall trees and high biomass. We used eddy covariance in a mid-elevation Sierra stand to understand how winter cold and summer drought limit canopy photosynthesis and production. The trees exhibited canopy photosynthesis year-round. Trees avoided winter dormancy, and daytime CO2uptake continued despite a deep snowpack and near-freezing temperatures. Photosynthesis on sunny days continued at half of maximum rates when air temperature was 0 °C. Likewise, the vegetation avoided summer drought dormancy, and high rates of daytime CO2uptake and transpiration continued despite a 5-month period with only negligible water input. We attribute this drought avoidance to deep rooting and availability of deep soil water. Year-round photosynthesis helps explain the large biomass observed in the Sierra Nevada, and implies adaptive strategies that may contribute to the resiliency or vulnerability of Sierran vegetation to climate change.

  12. A new species of Noblella (Amphibia, Anura, Craugastoridae) from the humid montane forests of Cusco, Peru

    PubMed Central

    Catenazzi, Alessandro; Uscapi, Vanessa; von May, Rudolf

    2015-01-01

    Abstract A new species of Noblella is described from the humid montane forest of the Región Cusco in Peru. Specimens were collected at 2330–2370 m elevation in Madre Selva, near Santa Ana, in the province of La Convención. The new species is readily distinguished from all other species of Noblella by having a broad, irregularly shaped, white mark on black background on chest and belly. The new species further differs from known Peruvian species of Noblella by the combination of the following characters: tympanic membrane absent, small tubercles on the upper eyelid and on dorsum, tarsal tubercles or folds absent, tips of digits not expanded, no circumferential grooves on digits, dark brown facial mask and lateral band extending from the tip of the snout to the inguinal region. The new species has a snout-to-vent length of 15.6 mm in one adult male and 17.6 mm in one adult female. Like other recently described species in the genus, this new Noblella inhabits high-elevation forests in the Andes and likely has a restricted geographic distribution. PMID:26312020

  13. A new species of Noblella (Amphibia, Anura, Craugastoridae) from the humid montane forests of Cusco, Peru.

    PubMed

    Catenazzi, Alessandro; Uscapi, Vanessa; von May, Rudolf

    2015-01-01

    A new species of Noblella is described from the humid montane forest of the Región Cusco in Peru. Specimens were collected at 2330-2370 m elevation in Madre Selva, near Santa Ana, in the province of La Convención. The new species is readily distinguished from all other species of Noblella by having a broad, irregularly shaped, white mark on black background on chest and belly. The new species further differs from known Peruvian species of Noblella by the combination of the following characters: tympanic membrane absent, small tubercles on the upper eyelid and on dorsum, tarsal tubercles or folds absent, tips of digits not expanded, no circumferential grooves on digits, dark brown facial mask and lateral band extending from the tip of the snout to the inguinal region. The new species has a snout-to-vent length of 15.6 mm in one adult male and 17.6 mm in one adult female. Like other recently described species in the genus, this new Noblella inhabits high-elevation forests in the Andes and likely has a restricted geographic distribution.

  14. Synthesis of the Ecohydrology of a Mexican Tropical Montane Cloud Forest and Implications of Land Use and Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Asbjornsen, H.; Alvarado-Barrientos, M. S.; Bruijnzeel, L. A.; Dawson, T. E.; Geissert, D.; Goldsmith, G. R.; Gomez-Cardenas, M.; Gomez-Tagle, A.; Gotsch, S. F.; Holwerda, F.; McDonnell, J. J.; Munoz Villers, L. E.; Tobon, C.

    2013-05-01

    Land use conversion and climate change threaten the hydrological services from tropical montane cloud forests (TMCFs), but knowledge about cloud forest ecohydrology and the effects of global change drivers is limited. Here, we present a synthesis of research that traced the hydrologic sources, fluxes and flowpaths under different land cover types degraded pasture, regenerating forest, mature forest, pine reforestation) in a seasonally dry TMCF in Veracruz, Mexico. We used hydrological (cloud water interception, CWI; streamflow) and ecophysiological measurements (transpiration, E; foliar uptake, FU) in combination with stable isotope techniques to elucidate to these ecohydrological processes. Results revealed that CWI was ≤2% of total annual rainfall due to low fog occurrence and wind speeds. Fog without rainfall reduced E by a factor of 4-5 relative to sunny conditions and by a factor of 2 relative to overcast conditions; the water 'gained' from fog suppression was ~80-100 mm year-1 relative to sunny conditions. At the canopy scale, FU resulted in the recovery of 9% of total E, suggesting a crucial role in alleviating water deficit; but not sufficient to offset the 17% water loss from nighttime E. Trees primarily utilized water from 30-50 cm soil depth, while water reaching the stream was derived from deep, 'old' water that was distinct from 'new' rainwater and plant water. Soils had high infiltration rates and water storage capacity, which contributed to the relatively low rainfall-runoff response, mainly generated from deep subsurface flowpaths. Conversion of mature forest to pasture or forest regeneration on former TMCF increased annual water yield by 600 mm and 300 mm, respectively, while planting pine on degraded pastures reduced water yield by 365 mm. Our results suggest that the ecophysiological effects of fog via suppressed E and FU have a greater impact on water yield than direct inputs from CWI in this TMCF. Rapid vertical rainfall percolation and

  15. Montane meadows and hydrologic connections between forests and streams in the Sierra Nevada, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lucas, R. G.; Conklin, M. H.

    2013-12-01

    Montane meadows of the Sierra Nevada often serve as the interface between up-gradient forested area and down-gradient streamflow. We investigated the roles that meadow groundwater and evapotranspiration play in the greater catchment water cycle using a water-column data from monitoring wells and piezometers in two meadows for water years 2008-2012. Analyses include mass balance and modeling using 1-D HYDRUS. Though spatially heterogeneous, groundwater fluxes contribute to evapotranspiration (ETg) across the meadows, and are constrained by surface-water discharge. Near the meadow center groundwater discharges occur for the duration of the snow-free season, ET¬g is relatively low. At the meadow edge the groundwater flux changes from discharge to recharge when the growing season begins; also ETg increases, and major-ion concentrations in groundwater are more dilute than those near the meadow center. When groundwater is discharged throughout the meadow during snowmelt, the stream-water ion content more closely resembles water sampled from wells at the meadow edge. These trends change as the summer season progresses--groundwater is no longer discharged at the meadow edge and the stream water ion concentration matches the groundwater sampled from the center of the meadow. Slug tests performed in the monitoring wells indicate a saturated hydraulic conductivity (Kh) of meadow substrates between 10-5 and 10-6 m s-1. The upper end of this range reflects substrate with large sand fractions, while lower values reflect finer-grained or higher-organic-content substrate. Applying the higher Kh values to groundwater gradients during snowmelt results in groundwater discharge rates greater than streamflow measured at the meadow outlet. This suggests that the peat layer at the meadow surface, with significantly lower Kh values, retards groundwater discharge from the meadow during snowmelt. ETg signals in wells at the meadow edge and in wells installed just outside of the meadow

  16. Mapping Depth to Bedrock in a Tropical Pre-Montane Wet Forest in Costa Rica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oien, R. P.; Burns, J. N.; Arnott, R.; Ackerson, J. P.; Morgan, C.

    2012-12-01

    Accounting for all components of the water balance in a watershed includes an estimate of soil water storage, which in turn depends on the depth to bedrock. The soils in this transitional tropical forest contain large amounts of amorphous material from the saprolitic tuff thus classifying the soils as Andisols. Measuring the depth to bedrock in tropical montane environments is complicated by aspect, elevation, slope, landslides, slumping and other mass wasting events. As part of a larger study, Texas A& M Costa Rica REU aimed to close the water budget for a tropical pre-montane forest, the focus of this study is to generate a map of the depth to saprolitic tuff and topographical information for the purpose of estimating the volume of soil water storage in the Howler Monkey Watershed at Texas A&M University Soltis Center for Research and Education, San Isidro de Peñas Blancas, Costa Rica. A map of the depth to saprolitic tuff was created using 101 hand- augured holes (over 2.63 ha) spatially distributed throughout the watershed. Saprolitic tuff was defined as being 50% of the sample and containing grittiness and cobble sized chunks. To characterize the soils throughout the watershed, soil horizons at three sites were described and 22 cores for particle size. The cores consisted of over 40-55% clay classifying them as clayey or clayey loam. The samples also ranged from 50-73% water content. A map showing the slopes within the watershed also shows the relationship of soil depth above the bedrock within the watershed. The slopes across the watershed vary from 12-65 degrees but only have a 24% correlation with the depth to saprolitic tuff. Results suggest that the depth of the saprolitic tuff is quite sensitive to small scale topographic variability. Soil with such high water content becomes an integral part of the water budget since a significant portion of the water is maintained within the soil. Depth to bedrock provides necessary data to estimate the total volume

  17. Understanding the role of fog in forest hydrology: Stable isotopes as tools for determining input and partitioning of cloud water in montane forests

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Scholl, M.; Eugster, W.; Burkard, R.

    2011-01-01

    Understanding the hydrology of tropical montane cloud forests (TMCF) has become essential as deforestation of mountain areas proceeds at an increased rate worldwide. Passive and active cloud-water collectors, throughfall and stemflow collectors, visibility or droplet size measurements, and micrometeorological sensors are typically used to measure the fog water inputs to ecosystems. In addition, stable isotopes may be used as a natural tracer for fog and rain. Previous studies have shown that the isotopic signature of fog tends to be more enriched in the heavier isotopes 2H and 18O than that of rain, due to differences in condensation temperature and history. Differences between fog and rain isotopes are largest when rain is from synoptic-scale storms, and fog or orographic cloud water is generated locally. Smaller isotopic differences have been observed between rain and fog on mountains with orographic clouds, but only a few studies have been conducted. Quantifying fog deposition using isotope methods is more difficult in forests receiving mixed precipitation, because of limitations in the ability of sampling equipment to separate fog from rain, and because fog and rain may, under some conditions, have similar isotopic composition. This article describes the various types of fog most relevant to montane cloud forests and the importance of fog water deposition in the hydrologic budget. A brief overview of isotope hydrology provides the background needed to understand isotope applications in cloud forests. A summary of previous work explains isotopic differences between rain and fog in different environments, and how monitoring the isotopic signature of surface water, soil water and tree xylem water can yield estimates of the contribution of fog water to streamflow, groundwater recharge and transpiration. Next, instrumentation to measure fog and rain, and methods to determine isotopic concentrations in plant and soil water are discussed. The article concludes with

  18. The importance of epiphytes to total rainfall interception by a tropical montane rain forest in Costa Rica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hölscher, Dirk; Köhler, Lars; van Dijk, Albert I. J. M.; Bruijnzeel, L. A.(Sampurno)

    2004-06-01

    The abundant epiphyte vegetation of upper montane tropical rain forests, which in terms of biomass is mainly composed of non-vascular plants (mosses, liverworts and lichens), can be expected to influence the magnitude of canopy water fluxes such as rainfall interception. The objects of this study were to: (i) estimate stand canopy water storage characteristics, (ii) determine rainfall interception by the canopy as a whole, and (iii) adapt an analytical model of rainfall interception, to enable the quantification of the contribution by non-vascular epiphytes to total interception. The studied old-growth forest in the Cordillera de Talamanca, Costa Rica, was 35 m tall, dominated by oaks, and little affected by fog. The estimated leaf area index of the trees was 7.7 m 2 m -2, which combined with results from a leaf wetting experiment gave a tree leaf water storage capacity of 1.08 mm at the stand level. The biomass of non-vascular epiphytes amounted to 1.9 t ha -1 dry weight. Monthly moss water contents measured in situ ranged between 24 and 406% of moss dry weight, corresponding to a maximum moss water storage of 0.81 mm at stand level. Seasonal variation in moss water contents was reproduced satisfactorily by a running water balance model. A modified analytical interception model, which incorporated the moss water balance model, was applied. Weekly sums of observed throughfall, stemflow and interception measurements were available for comparison and amounted to 70, 2 and 28% of the associated 2150 mm of rain. The model predicted the observed values quite well and suggested that mosses contributed about 6% to the modelled interception total. Hence, the hydrological importance of epiphytes in the studied forest was rather limited despite their considerable maximum water storage capacity. This is thought to reflect the fact that under the prevailing rainfall conditions only a fraction of the potential storage is actually available.

  19. Microbial carbon mineralization in tropical lowland and montane forest soils of Peru

    PubMed Central

    Whitaker, Jeanette; Ostle, Nicholas; McNamara, Niall P.; Nottingham, Andrew T.; Stott, Andrew W.; Bardgett, Richard D.; Salinas, Norma; Ccahuana, Adan J. Q.; Meir, Patrick

    2014-01-01

    Climate change is affecting the amount and complexity of plant inputs to tropical forest soils. This is likely to influence the carbon (C) balance of these ecosystems by altering decomposition processes e.g., “positive priming effects” that accelerate soil organic matter mineralization. However, the mechanisms determining the magnitude of priming effects are poorly understood. We investigated potential mechanisms by adding 13C labeled substrates, as surrogates of plant inputs, to soils from an elevation gradient of tropical lowland and montane forests. We hypothesized that priming effects would increase with elevation due to increasing microbial nitrogen limitation, and that microbial community composition would strongly influence the magnitude of priming effects. Quantifying the sources of respired C (substrate or soil organic matter) in response to substrate addition revealed no consistent patterns in priming effects with elevation. Instead we found that substrate quality (complexity and nitrogen content) was the dominant factor controlling priming effects. For example a nitrogenous substrate induced a large increase in soil organic matter mineralization whilst a complex C substrate caused negligible change. Differences in the functional capacity of specific microbial groups, rather than microbial community composition per se, were responsible for these substrate-driven differences in priming effects. Our findings suggest that the microbial pathways by which plant inputs and soil organic matter are mineralized are determined primarily by the quality of plant inputs and the functional capacity of microbial taxa, rather than the abiotic properties of the soil. Changes in the complexity and stoichiometry of plant inputs to soil in response to climate change may therefore be important in regulating soil C dynamics in tropical forest soils. PMID:25566230

  20. Microbial carbon mineralization in tropical lowland and montane forest soils of Peru.

    PubMed

    Whitaker, Jeanette; Ostle, Nicholas; McNamara, Niall P; Nottingham, Andrew T; Stott, Andrew W; Bardgett, Richard D; Salinas, Norma; Ccahuana, Adan J Q; Meir, Patrick

    2014-01-01

    Climate change is affecting the amount and complexity of plant inputs to tropical forest soils. This is likely to influence the carbon (C) balance of these ecosystems by altering decomposition processes e.g., "positive priming effects" that accelerate soil organic matter mineralization. However, the mechanisms determining the magnitude of priming effects are poorly understood. We investigated potential mechanisms by adding (13)C labeled substrates, as surrogates of plant inputs, to soils from an elevation gradient of tropical lowland and montane forests. We hypothesized that priming effects would increase with elevation due to increasing microbial nitrogen limitation, and that microbial community composition would strongly influence the magnitude of priming effects. Quantifying the sources of respired C (substrate or soil organic matter) in response to substrate addition revealed no consistent patterns in priming effects with elevation. Instead we found that substrate quality (complexity and nitrogen content) was the dominant factor controlling priming effects. For example a nitrogenous substrate induced a large increase in soil organic matter mineralization whilst a complex C substrate caused negligible change. Differences in the functional capacity of specific microbial groups, rather than microbial community composition per se, were responsible for these substrate-driven differences in priming effects. Our findings suggest that the microbial pathways by which plant inputs and soil organic matter are mineralized are determined primarily by the quality of plant inputs and the functional capacity of microbial taxa, rather than the abiotic properties of the soil. Changes in the complexity and stoichiometry of plant inputs to soil in response to climate change may therefore be important in regulating soil C dynamics in tropical forest soils.

  1. Estimation of fog deposition on epiphytic bryophytes in a subtropical montane forest ecosystem in northeastern Taiwan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chang, Shih-Chieh; Lai, I.-Ling; Wu, Jiunn-Tzong

    The fog meteorology, fog chemistry and fog deposition on epiphytic bryophytes were investigated from July 2000 to June 2001 in the Yuanyang Lake forest ecosystem. The elevation of the site ranges from 1650 to 2420 m, at which the high frequency of fog occurrence throughout the year has been thought to be of benefit to the establishment of the primary Taiwan yellow cypress forest [ Chamaecyparis obtusa var. formosana (Hayata) Rehder] and to the extensive growth of the epiphytic bryophytes. A weather station including a visibility sensor and an active fog collector was installed for fog meteorological and chemical study. The fog deposition rate on epiphytic bryophytes was estimated by measuring the increase rate in plant weight when exposed to fog. Average fog duration of 4.7 and 11.0 h per day was measured in summer months (June to August) and the rest of the year, respectively. November 2000 was the foggiest month in which the average fog duration reached 14.9 h per day. The ionic composition of fog water revealed that the area was less polluted than expected from literature data. The in situ exposure experiments done with the dominant epiphytic bryophytes showed an average fog deposition rate of 0.63 g H 2O g -1 d. w. h -1, which approximated 0.17 mm h -1 at the stand scale. The nutrient fluxes estimated for February 2001 showed that for all ions, more than 50% of the ecosystem input was through fog deposition. These results demonstrate the importance of epiphytic bryophytes and fog deposition in nutrient cycling of this subtropical montane forest ecosystem. The incorporation of fog study in the long-term ecosystem research projects is necessary in this area.

  2. Investigating the controls on Gross Primary Productivity of a high elevation tropical montane cloud forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van de Weg, M. J.; Meir, P.; Malhi, Y.; Williams, M.; Silva-Espejo, J.; Grace, J.

    2012-04-01

    Tropical montane cloud forests (TMCF) are a unique, but little understood ecosystem that can be found in tropical mountainous areas around the world. In recent years, the interest in the carbon (C) cycle of TMCFs has increased, especially with regard to possibilities for carbon sequestration and storage practices. Compared with tropical lowland rainforests, these forests have a low aboveground net primary productivity (ANPP), a small standing biomass and a small leaf area index (LAI), while the forests are characterized by the stunted growth form of the trees. However, estimates of gross primary productivity (GPP) of TMCFs are scarce, and there are uncertainties in what factors are most important in controlling TMCF productivity. We investigated the controlling factors on GPP in a TMCF in the Andes in south east Peru (13°11'28"S / 71°35'24"W). First, we measured physiological and structural parameters of the vegetation. On a leaf level, the carboxylation efficiency of Rubisco (V cmax) and the electron transport capacity (Jmax) were as high as those found in tropical lowland forests, but as expected the LAI was smaller. Therefore, in terms of the capacity for TMCF C uptake, the total leaf area is more important in explaining the difference between TMCF GPP and tropical lowland forest GPP, than photosynthetic capacity of the leaf tissue. Furthermore, we used the vegetation parameters, together with meteorological data from the site with a process based simulator (the SPA model) to simulate TMCF GPP and to evaluate the relative importance of the environmental controls on GPP. To our knowledge, this is the first estimate of TMCF GPP that uses parameters and drivers that are derived from the site simulated in the model. Simulated annual GPP was 16.2 ± SE 1.6 t C ha-1 yr-1, which is about half of the GPP commonly observed in neotropical lowland rainforests. Temperature and, to a lesser extent photosynthetic active radiation (PAR), were the strongest environmental

  3. Pervasive effects of wildfire on foliar endophyte communities in montane forest trees

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Yu-Ling; Devan, MM Nandi; U'Ren, Jana M.; Furr, Susan H.; Arnold, A. Elizabeth

    2015-01-01

    Plants in all terrestrial ecosystems form symbioses with endophytic fungi that inhabit their healthy tissues. How these foliar endophytes respond to wildfires has not been studied previously, but is important given the increasing frequency and intensity of severe wildfires in many ecosystems, and because endophytes can influence plant growth and responses to stress. The goal of this study was to examine effects of severe wildfires on endophyte communities in forest trees, with a focus on traditionally fire-dominated, montane ecosystems in the southwestern USA. We evaluated the abundance, diversity, and composition of endophytes in foliage of Juniperus deppeana (Cupressaceae) and Quercus spp. (Fagaceae) collected contemporaneously from areas affected by recent wildfire and paired areas not affected by recent fire. Study sites spanned four mountain ranges in central and southern Arizona. Our results revealed significant effects of fires on endophyte communities, including decreases in isolation frequency, increases in diversity, and shifts in community structure and taxonomic composition among endophytes of trees affected by recent fires. Responses to fire were similar in endophytes of each host in these fire-dominated ecosystems and reflect regional fire-return intervals, with endophytes after fire representing subsets of the regional mycoflora. Together these findings contribute to an emerging perspective on the responses of diverse communities to severe fire, and highlight the importance of considering fire history when estimating endophyte diversity and community structure for focal biomes. PMID:26370111

  4. Throughfall in a Puerto Rican lower montane rain forest: A comparison of sampling strategies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holwerda, F.; Scatena, F. N.; Bruijnzeel, L. A.

    2006-08-01

    SummaryDuring a one-year period, the variability of throughfall and the standard errors of the means associated with different gauge arrangements were studied in a lower montane rain forest in Puerto Rico. The following gauge arrangements were used: (1) 60 fixed gauges, (2) 30 fixed gauges, and (3) 30 roving gauges. Stemflow was measured on 22 trees of four different species. An ANOVA indicated that mean relative throughfall measured by arrangements 1 (77%), 2 (74%), and 3 (73%) were not significantly different at the 0.05 level. However, the variability of the total throughfall estimate was about half as high for roving gauges (23%) as for fixed gauges (48-49%). The variability of stemflow ranged from 36% to 67% within tree species and was 144% for all sampled trees. Total stemflow was estimated at 4.1% of rainfall, of which palms contributed about 66%. Comparative analysis indicated that while fixed and roving gauge arrangements can give similar mean values, least 100 fixed gauges are required to have an error at the 95% confidence level comparable to that obtained by 30 roving gauges.

  5. Pervasive Effects of Wildfire on Foliar Endophyte Communities in Montane Forest Trees.

    PubMed

    Huang, Yu-Ling; Devan, M M Nandi; U'Ren, Jana M; Furr, Susan H; Arnold, A Elizabeth

    2016-02-01

    Plants in all terrestrial ecosystems form symbioses with endophytic fungi that inhabit their healthy tissues. How these foliar endophytes respond to wildfires has not been studied previously, but is important given the increasing frequency and intensity of severe wildfires in many ecosystems, and because endophytes can influence plant growth and responses to stress. The goal of this study was to examine effects of severe wildfires on endophyte communities in forest trees, with a focus on traditionally fire-dominated, montane ecosystems in the southwestern USA. We evaluated the abundance, diversity, and composition of endophytes in foliage of Juniperus deppeana (Cupressaceae) and Quercus spp. (Fagaceae) collected contemporaneously from areas affected by recent wildfire and paired areas not affected by recent fire. Study sites spanned four mountain ranges in central and southern Arizona. Our results revealed significant effects of fires on endophyte communities, including decreases in isolation frequency, increases in diversity, and shifts in community structure and taxonomic composition among endophytes of trees affected by recent fires. Responses to fire were similar in endophytes of each host in these fire-dominated ecosystems and reflect regional fire-return intervals, with endophytes after fire representing subsets of the regional mycoflora. Together, these findings contribute to an emerging perspective on the responses of diverse communities to severe fire, and highlight the importance of considering fire history when estimating endophyte diversity and community structure for focal biomes.

  6. Fog in a marginal agricultural area surrounded by montane Andean cloud forest during El Niño climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    García-Santos, G.

    2010-07-01

    The aim of the present study was to evaluate temporal variations of water inputs, rainfall and fog (cloud water), and its contribution to the water balance in a marginal agricultural area of potato surrounded by tropical montane cloud forest in Colombia. Fog in the air boundary layer was estimated using a cylindrical fog collector. Liquid water content of fog events were evaluated before and during natural climate event of El Niño. Our study shows the temporal variation of these two water inputs in both daily and monthly cycles on Boyacá at 2900 m a.s.l. Rainfall was the most frequently observed atmospheric phenomenon, being present on average 62% of the days per year, whereas fog was 45% of the time. Reflected on the lower frequency, annual amount of fog was 11% of precipitation. However during the anomalous dry climate of El Niño, total amount of rainfall was negligible and the few fog events were the only water source for plant growth. Estimated water crop requirements were higher than the water inputs. The survival of the crops was explained by meteorological conditions during dew and fog events. High relative humidity might have eased the plant’s water stress by decreasing transpiration and temperature in leaves and soil, affecting the water balance and the heat exchange between the atmosphere-land interfaces in the marginal agricultural areas during exceptional dry climate.

  7. Impact of elevated N input on soil N cycling and losses in old-growth lowland and montane forests in Panama.

    PubMed

    Corre, Marife D; Veldkamp, Edzo; Arnold, Julia; Wright, S Joseph

    2010-06-01

    Nitrogen deposition is projected to increase rapidly in tropical ecosystems, but changes in soil-N-cycling processes in tropical ecosystems under elevated N input are less well understood. We used N-addition experiments to achieve N-enriched conditions in mixed-species, lowland and montane forests in Panama. Our objectives were to (1) assess changes in soil mineral N production (gross rates of N mineralization and nitrification) and retention (microbial immobilization and rapid reactions to organic N) during 1- and 9-yr N additions in the lowland forest and during 1-yr N addition in the montane forest and (2) relate these changes to N leaching and N-oxide emissions. In the old-growth lowland forest located on an Inceptisol, with high base saturation and net primary production not limited by N, there was no immediate effect of first-year N addition on gross rates of mineral-N production and N-oxide emissions. Changes in soil-N processes were only apparent in chronic (9 yr) N-addition plots: gross N mineralization and nitrification rates, NO3- leaching, and N-oxide emissions increased, while microbial biomass and NH4+ immobilization rates decreased compared to the control. Increased mineral-N production under chronic N addition was paralleled by increased substrate quality (e.g., reduced C:N ratios of litterfall), while the decrease in microbial biomass was possibly due to an increase in soil acidity. An increase in N losses was reflected in the increase in 15N signatures of litterfall under chronic N addition. In contrast, the old-growth montane forest located on an Andisol, with low base saturation and aboveground net primary production limited by N, reacted to first-year N addition with increases in gross rates of mineral-N production, microbial biomass, NO3- leaching, and N-oxide emissions compared to the control. The increased N-oxide emissions were attributed to increased nitrification activity in the organic layer, and the high NO3- availability combined with

  8. Moisture status during a strong El Niño explains a tropical montane cloud forest's upper limit.

    PubMed

    Crausbay, Shelley D; Frazier, Abby G; Giambelluca, Thomas W; Longman, Ryan J; Hotchkiss, Sara C

    2014-05-01

    Growing evidence suggests short-duration climate events may drive community structure and composition more directly than long-term climate means, particularly at ecotones where taxa are close to their physiological limits. Here we use an empirical habitat model to evaluate the role of microclimate during a strong El Niño in structuring a tropical montane cloud forest's upper limit and composition in Hawai'i. We interpolate climate surfaces, derived from a high-density network of climate stations, to permanent vegetation plots. Climatic predictor variables include (1) total rainfall, (2) mean relative humidity, and (3) mean temperature representing non-El Niño periods and a strong El Niño drought. Habitat models explained species composition within the cloud forest with non-El Niño rainfall; however, the ecotone at the cloud forest's upper limit was modeled with relative humidity during a strong El Niño drought and secondarily with non-El Niño rainfall. This forest ecotone may be particularly responsive to strong, short-duration climate variability because taxa here, particularly the isohydric dominant Metrosideros polymorpha, are near their physiological limits. Overall, this study demonstrates moisture's overarching influence on a tropical montane ecosystem, and suggests that short-term climate events affecting moisture status are particularly relevant at tropical ecotones. This study further suggests that predicting the consequences of climate change here, and perhaps in other tropical montane settings, will rely on the skill and certainty around future climate models of regional rainfall, relative humidity, and El Niño.

  9. Ranging behavior of eastern hoolock gibbon (Hoolock leuconedys) in a northern montane forest in Gaoligongshan, Yunnan, China.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Dao; Fei, Han-Lan; Yuan, Sheng-Dong; Sun, Wen-Mo; Ni, Qing-Yong; Cui, Liang-Wei; Fan, Peng-Fei

    2014-04-01

    Generally, food abundance and distribution exert important influence on primate ranging behavior. Hoolock gibbons (genus Hoolock) live in lowland and montane forests in India, Bangladesh, Myanmar and China. All information about hoolock gibbons comes from studies on western hoolock gibbons (Hoolock hoolock) living in lowland forest. Between August 2010 and September 2011, we studied the ranging behavior of one habituated group of eastern hoolock gibbon (H. leuconedys) living in a seasonal montane forest in Gaoligongshan, Yunnan, China. Results show that the study group did not increase foraging effort, calculated in this study as the daily path length, when fruit was less available. Instead, the gibbons fed more on leaves and decreased traveling to conserve energy. They relied heavily on a single food species in most study months which was patchily distributed within their total (14-month) home range, and during most months they used only a small portion of their total home range. In order to find enough food, the group shifted its monthly home range according to the seasonal availability of food species. To satisfy their annual food requirements, they occupied a total home range of 93 ha. The absence of neighboring groups of gibbons and the presence of tsaoko cardamom (Amomum tsaoko) plantations may also have influenced the ranging behavior of the group. Further long-term studies of neighboring groups living in intact forests are required to assess these effects.

  10. Functional Trait Trade-Offs for the Tropical Montane Rain Forest Species Responding to Light from Simulating Experiments

    PubMed Central

    Mao, Peili; Zang, Runguo; Shao, Hongbo; Yu, Junbao

    2014-01-01

    Differences among tropical tree species in survival and growth to light play a key role in plant competition and community composition. Two canopy species with contrasting functional traits dominating early and late successional stages, respectively, in a tropical montane rain forest of Hainan Island, China, were selected in a pot experiment under 4 levels of light intensity (full, 50%, 30%, and 10%) in order to explore the adaptive strategies of tropical trees to light conditions. Under each light intensity level, the pioneer species, Endospermum chinense (Euphorbiaceae), had higher relative growth rate (RGR), stem mass ratio (SMR), specific leaf area (SLA), and morphological plasticity while the shade tolerant climax species, Parakmeria lotungensis (Magnoliaceae), had higher root mass ratio (RMR) and leaf mass ratio (LMR). RGR of both species was positively related to SMR and SLA under each light level but was negatively correlated with RMR under lower light (30% and 10% full light). The climax species increased its survival by a conservative resource use strategy through increasing leaf defense and root biomass investment at the expense of growth rate in low light. In contrast, the pioneer increased its growth by an exploitative resource use strategy through increasing leaf photosynthetic capacity and stem biomass investment at the expense of survival under low light. There was a trade-off between growth and survival for species under different light conditions. Our study suggests that tree species in the tropical rainforest adopt different strategies in stands of different successional stages. Species in the earlier successional stages have functional traits more advantageous to grow faster in the high light conditions, whereas species in the late successional stages have traits more favorable to survive in the low light conditions. PMID:25019095

  11. Rainfall interception in a lower montane forest in Ecuador: effects of canopy properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fleischbein, Katrin; Wilcke, Wolfgang; Goller, Rainer; Boy, Jens; Valarezo, Carlos; Zech, Wolfgang; Knoblich, Klaus

    2005-04-01

    Rainfall interception in forests is influenced by properties of the canopy that tend to vary over small distances. Our objectives were: (i) to determine the variables needed to model the interception loss of the canopy of a lower montane forest in south Ecuador, i.e. the storage capacity of the leaves S and of the trunks and branches St, and the fractions of direct throughfall p and stemflow pt; (ii) to assess the influence of canopy density and epiphyte coverage of trees on the interception of rainfall and subsequent evaporation losses.The study site was located on the eastern slope of the eastern cordillera in the south Ecuadorian Andes at 1900-2000 m above sea level. We monitored incident rainfall, throughfall, and stemflow between April 1998 and April 2001. In 2001, the leaf area index (LAI), inferred from light transmission, and epiphyte coverage was determined.The mean annual incident rainfall at three gauging stations ranged between 2319 and 2561 mm. The mean annual interception loss at five study transects in the forest varied between 591 and 1321 mm, i.e. between 25 and 52% of the incident rainfall. Mean S was estimated at 1.91 mm for relatively dry weeks with a regression model and at 2.46 mm for all weeks with the analytical Gash model; the respective estimates of mean St were 0.04 mm and 0.09 mm, of mean p were 0.42 and 0.63, and of mean pt were 0.003 and 0.012. The LAI ranged from 5.19 to 9.32. Epiphytes, mostly bryophytes, covered up to 80% of the trunk and branch surfaces. The fraction of direct throughfall p and the LAI correlated significantly with interception loss (Pearson's correlation coefficient r = -0.77 and 0.35 respectively, n = 40). Bryophyte and lichen coverage tended to decrease St and vascular epiphytes tended to increase it, although there was no significant correlation between epiphyte coverage and interception loss. Our results demonstrate that

  12. Species delimitation, phylogeny and evolutionary demography of co-distributed, montane frogs in the southern Brazilian Atlantic Forest.

    PubMed

    Firkowski, Carina R; Bornschein, Marcos R; Ribeiro, Luiz F; Pie, Marcio R

    2016-07-01

    The Brazilian Atlantic Forest (BAF) is recognized as one of the world's biodiversity hotspots, with even more species per unit of area than the Amazon, however the mechanisms that led to such astonishing diversity are yet to be fully understood. In this study, we investigate the diversification of two co-distributed frog genera associated with montane areas of southern BAF: Melanophryniscus (Bufonidae) and Brachycephalus (Brachycephalidae). Species delimitation methods using mitochondrial and nuclear loci supported the existence of a remarkable number of highly endemic species in each genus, most of which occupy only one or a few adjacent mountaintops. Their timing of diversification was highly congruent, supporting recent speciation events within the past 600 thousand years. Extended Bayesian skyline plots indicate that most populations have remained relatively stable in size across the evolutionary past, with recent growth after 0.15My, suggesting that the drastic changes found in previous studies on lowland frog species were not shared by these montane taxa. These results are consistent with the existence of a montane refugium in southern BAF, allowing species persistence through the climatic shifts experienced along the BAF during the Quaternary.

  13. Diet of a sigmodontine rodent assemblage in a Peruvian montane forest.

    PubMed

    Sahley, Catherine Teresa; Cervantes, Klauss; Pacheco, Victor; Salas, Edith; Paredes, Diego; Alonso, Alfonso

    2015-09-29

    Knowledge of feeding habits of small rodents is necessary for understanding food webs, trophic structure, and plant-animal interactions in Neotropical forests. Despite several studies that have investigated community structure and feeding behavior of rodents, large gaps remain in our understanding of their guild occupancy. Our objective was to investigate the diets of 7 species of small (< 100g) sympatric sigmodontine rodents in a high (3,500 m) Andean montane rainforest in Peru. We qualitatively and quantitatively assessed diet items in fecal samples from livetrapped rodents from 2009 to 2012. Frequency data for 4 diet categories indicated that all 7 species of rodents contained 4 diet categories in fecal samples: arthropods (88%), remains of leaves and fibers from plants (61%), intact seeds (with or without fruit pulp; 50%), and mycorrhizal spores (45%). Omnivory was found to be a strategy used by all species, although contingency table analysis revealed significant differences among and within species in diet categories. Cluster analysis showed 2 main groupings: that of the Thomasomys spp. plus Calomys sorellus group which included high amounts of intact seeds and plant parts in their fecal samples, and those of the genera Akodon, Microryzomys, Oligoryzomys, which included a greater proportion of arthropods in their fecal samples, but still consumed substantial amounts of fruit and plant parts. Intact seed remains from at least 17 plant species (9 families) were found in fecal samples. We concluded that this assemblage of sigmodontine rodents is omnivorous but that they likely play an important role as frugivores and in seed dispersal in tropical montane forests in Peru. El conocimiento de los hábitos alimenticios de roedores pequeños es necesario para comprender cadenas alimenticias, estructura trófica, e interacciones planta-animal en los bosques neotropicales. A pesar de que numerosos estudios han investigado la estructura de comunidades y el

  14. Diet of a sigmodontine rodent assemblage in a Peruvian montane forest

    PubMed Central

    Sahley, Catherine Teresa; Cervantes, Klauss; Pacheco, Victor; Salas, Edith; Paredes, Diego; Alonso, Alfonso

    2015-01-01

    Knowledge of feeding habits of small rodents is necessary for understanding food webs, trophic structure, and plant–animal interactions in Neotropical forests. Despite several studies that have investigated community structure and feeding behavior of rodents, large gaps remain in our understanding of their guild occupancy. Our objective was to investigate the diets of 7 species of small (< 100g) sympatric sigmodontine rodents in a high (3,500 m) Andean montane rainforest in Peru. We qualitatively and quantitatively assessed diet items in fecal samples from livetrapped rodents from 2009 to 2012. Frequency data for 4 diet categories indicated that all 7 species of rodents contained 4 diet categories in fecal samples: arthropods (88%), remains of leaves and fibers from plants (61%), intact seeds (with or without fruit pulp; 50%), and mycorrhizal spores (45%). Omnivory was found to be a strategy used by all species, although contingency table analysis revealed significant differences among and within species in diet categories. Cluster analysis showed 2 main groupings: that of the Thomasomys spp. plus Calomys sorellus group which included high amounts of intact seeds and plant parts in their fecal samples, and those of the genera Akodon, Microryzomys, Oligoryzomys, which included a greater proportion of arthropods in their fecal samples, but still consumed substantial amounts of fruit and plant parts. Intact seed remains from at least 17 plant species (9 families) were found in fecal samples. We concluded that this assemblage of sigmodontine rodents is omnivorous but that they likely play an important role as frugivores and in seed dispersal in tropical montane forests in Peru. El conocimiento de los hábitos alimenticios de roedores pequeños es necesario para comprender cadenas alimenticias, estructura trófica, e interacciones planta-animal en los bosques neotropicales. A pesar de que numerosos estudios han investigado la estructura de comunidades y el

  15. Coexistence and community structure of tropical trees in a Hawaiian montane rain forest

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hatfield, J.S.; Link, W.A.; Dawson, D.K.; Lindquist, E.L.

    1996-01-01

    We measured the diameter at breast height of all trees and shrubs > 5 meters in height, including standing dead trees, on 68 0.04-hectare study plots in a montane, subtropical rain forest on Mauna Loa, Hawai`i. The canopy species consisted of 88 percent Metrosideros polymorpha (ohia) and 12 percent Acacia koa (koa). Negative associations were found between the densities of koa and ohia, the density of koa and the total basal area of ohia, and the total basal areas of koa and ohia. The two-species lottery competition model, a stochastic model in which the coexistence of two species in a space-limited community results from temporal variation in recruitment and death rates, predicts a quadratic-beta distribution for the proportion of space occupied by each species. A discrete version of the quadratic-beta distribution, the quadratic-beta binomial distribution, was fit to the live koa and ohia densities and assessed with goodness-of-fit tests. Likelihood ratio tests provided evidence that the mean adult death rates of the two species were equal but that the relative competitive abilities of the two species favored ohia. These tests were corroborated by a contingency table analysis of death rates based on standing dead trees and growth rate studies which report that koa grows much faster than ohia. The lottery model predicts a positive covariance between death rates and ohia recruitment when mean death rates are equal and koa has a higher growth rate than ohia. We argue that the competitive advantage of ohia is due to its superior dispersal ability into large gaps, which would yield the positive covariance described above, and it is this positive covariance term that skews the occupation of space in favor of ohia.

  16. Genetic evaluation of alternative silvicultural systems in coastal montane forests: western hemlock and amabilis fir.

    PubMed

    El-Kassaby, Y A; Dunsworth, B G; Krakowski, J

    2003-08-01

    Genetic diversity and mating system were quantified for shelterwood, patch cut and green tree-retention silvicultural systems, and compared to adjacent old-growth. This is a component of a larger study conducted in montane old-growth forests of coastal British Columbia to evaluate the feasibility and ecological consequences of alternative silvicultural systems. The experiment includes replicated treatments representing a range of overstory removal adjacent to old-growth and clearcut areas. Based on 22 electrophoretically assayed loci, the effects of silvicultural systems on genetic parameters of amabilis fir (Abies amabilis and western hemlock (Tsuga heterophylla were assessed by comparing an average number of alleles per locus, the percent polymorphic loci, and observed and expected heterozygosity between parental populations and naturally regenerated progeny as well as among treatments. Genetic variation in natural regeneration was greater than in parental populations, especially for low-frequency alleles. Silvicultural treatments caused no significant differences in amabilis fir genetic-diversity parameters, while the shelterwood system resulted in lower observed and expected heterozygosity in western hemlock. Nei's genetic distance revealed that all parental populations were extremely similar. The two species had contrasting mating system dynamics with amabilis fir producing higher levels of correlated paternity and inbreeding with wider variation among individual tree outcrossing-rate estimates. Western hemlock had significant levels of correlated paternity only for the green tree and shelterwood treatments demonstrating family structuring inversely related to stand density. Inbreeding in western hemlock was significant but lower than that observed for amabilis fir with a J-shaped distribution for individual tree multilocus outcrossing-rate estimates. The pollination and dispersal mechanisms of the two species represent the most-likely factors causing these

  17. Effect of mean annual temperature on nutrient return via litterfall in Hawaiian tropical montane wet forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Litton, C. M.; Freeman, K. R.; Giardina, C. P.; Selmants, P.

    2012-12-01

    Rising temperatures are predicted to influence nutrient cycling and availability in terrestrial ecosystems. Changes in nutrient availability, in turn, have important implications for terrestrial ecosystem C cycling and storage. However, the magnitude and direction of temperature-induced changes in nutrient availability, as well as variations across important micro- and macronutrients, remain poorly constrained, particularly in tropical forests which play a disproportionately large role in global C cycling. The return of nutrients to soil via aboveground litterfall is a sensitive, integrated index of stand-level biogeochemical process rates. As a result, quantifying the response of nutrient return via litterfall to increases in mean annual temperature (MAT) can yield valuable insights into how whole ecosystems will respond to future warming. We examined the effects of MAT on nutrient return via litterfall over one year for nine nutrients (N, P, Ca, Mg, K, Mn, Cu, Zn and Fe) in tropical montane wet forests located across a highly constrained MAT gradient where N and P are believed to co-limit stand-level productivity. Specifically, we analyzed stand-level patterns of litterfall mass, nutrient return via litterfall, and nutrient use efficiencies across nine permanent plots spanning a 5.2°C MAT gradient (13.0 to 18.2°C; corresponding to 1,600 to 800 m a.s.l) on the Island of Hawaii. Litterfall mass increased linearly and positively with MAT, indicating that stand-level productivity increases with MAT. The return of N, K, Mg and Zn via litterfall also increased linearly with MAT, while the return of Cu via litterfall decreased linearly with MAT. Nutrient use efficiencies increased linearly with MAT for Cu and Mn, and decreased linearly with MAT for K, Mg and Zn. No patterns in P cycling were evident, despite that it is believed to co-limit productivity in these forests based on prior fertilization experiments. These data suggest that increasing MAT will increase the

  18. Response of epiphytic bryophytes to simulated N deposition in a subtropical montane cloud forest in southwestern China.

    PubMed

    Song, Liang; Liu, Wen-Yao; Ma, Wen-Zhang; Qi, Jin-Hua

    2012-11-01

    A field manipulation experiment was conducted in a subtropical montane cloud forest in southwestern China to determine the possible responses of epiphytic bryophytes to increasing nitrogen (N) deposition from community to physiology level, and to find sensitive epiphytic bryophytes that may be used as indicators for assessing the degree of N pollution. N addition had significantly negative effects on species richness and cover of the epiphytic bryophyte community. Harmful effects of high N loads were recorded for chlorophyll, growth, and vitality of the species tested. The decline of some epiphytic bryophytes may result from detrimental effects on degradation to photosynthetic pigments. Bazzania himalayana (Mitt.) Schiffn., Bazzania ovistipula (Steph.) Mizut., and Homaliodendron flabellatum (Sm.) Fleisch. are candidates in atmospheric nitrogen monitoring. Epiphytic bryophytes in the montane cloud forest are very sensitive to increasing N deposition and often difficult to recover once they have been destroyed, providing early detection of enhanced N pollution for trees or even the whole forest ecosystem. The inference that increasing N pollution may lead to loss of biodiversity is a concern to the developing economy in western China, and should alert the government to the adverse impacts caused by increased industrial pollution during the process of China's West Development.

  19. [Microbial community and its activities in canopy- and understory humus of two montane forest types in Ailao Mountains, Northwest China].

    PubMed

    Liu, Yong-jie; Liu, Wen-yao; Chen, Lin; Zhang, Han-bo; Wang, Gao-sheng

    2010-09-01

    Mid-montane moist evergreen broadleaved forest (MMF) and top-montane dwarf mossy forest (DMF) are the two major natural forest types in subtropical mountainous area of Ailao Mountains, Northwest China. In this paper, a comparative study was made on the microbial composition, quantity, biochemical activity, metabolic activity, and their seasonal dynamics in the canopy- and understory humus of the two forest types. The composition, quantity, and metabolic activity of the microbes in the canopy humus of dominant tree species in MMF and DMF were also analyzed. In the canopy humus of the two forest types, the amounts of fungi and actinomycetes, microbial biomass C and N, and intensities of nitrogen fixation and cellulose decomposition were significantly higher than those in understory humus. Meanwhile, the amount of cellulose-decomposing microbes (ACDM), cellulose decomposition intensity, microbial biomass C and N, and metabolic activity in the canopy humus of MMF were significantly higher than those of DMF. The amounts of bacteria, fungi, and aerobic nitrogen-fixing bacteria (ANFB) and the metabolic activity in the canopy humus of MMF and DMF were significantly higher in wet season than in dry season, while a contradictory trend was observed on the amount of actinomycetes. No significant difference was observed on the amount of ACDM between wet season and dry season. For the two forest types, the amounts of microbes and their biochemical activities in canopy humus had a larger seasonal variation range than those in understory humus. There was a significant difference in the amounts of the microbes in canopy humus among the dominant tree species in MMF and DMF, especially in wet season. The microbes in canopy humus played important roles in maintaining the biodiversity of epiphytes in the canopy, and in supplying the needed nutrients for the vigorous growth of the epiphytes.

  20. Comparison of carbon uptake estimates from forest inventory and Eddy-Covariance for a montane rainforest in central Sulawesi

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heimsch, Florian; Kreilein, Heiner; Rauf, Abdul; Knohl, Alexander

    2016-04-01

    Rainforests in general and montane rainforests in particular have rarely been studied over longer time periods. We aim to provide baseline information of a montane tropical forest's carbon uptake over time in order to quantify possible losses through land-use change. Thus we conducted a re-inventory of 22 10-year old forest inventory plots, giving us a rare opportunity to quantify carbon uptake over such a long time period by traditional methods. We discuss shortfalls of such techniques and why our estimate of 1.5 Mg/ha/a should be considered as the lower boundary and not the mean carbon uptake per year. At the same location as the inventory, CO2 fluxes were measured with the Eddy-Covariance technique. Measurements were conducted at 48m height with an LI 7500 open-path infrared gas analyser. We will compare carbon uptake estimates from these measurements to those of the more conventional inventory method and discuss, which factors are probably responsible for differences.

  1. Impact of land use on Costa Rican tropical montane cloud forests: Sensitivity of orographic cloud formation to deforestation in the plains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ray, Deepak K.; Nair, Udaysankar S.; Lawton, Robert O.; Welch, Ronald M.; Pielke, Roger A.

    2006-01-01

    The current study provides new insights into the coupling of land use in lowland and premontane regions (i.e., regions below 1000 m) and orographic cloud formation over the Monteverde cloud forests. Rawinsondes launched during the Land Use Cloud Interaction Experiment (LUCIE) together with those from the National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) provided profiles that were used to drive the Colorado State University Regional Atmospheric Modeling System (CSU RAMS) model, which simulated three realistic land use scenarios (pristine forests, current conditions and future deforestation). For current conditions, the model-simulated clouds were compared against those observed at hourly intervals by the Geostationary Environmental Observational Satellite-East (GOES E) satellite. The model performed best on 6 different days. The model-simulated profiles of dew point and air temperatures were compared with the observed profiles from rawinsondes for these days. There was generally very good agreement below 700 mb, the region of the atmosphere most crucial to the cloud forests. The average model simulations for the 6 days show that when the lowland and premontane regions were completely forested, the orographic cloud bank intersected the mountains at the lowest elevations, covered the largest land surface area and remained longest on the surface in the montane regions. Deforestation has decreased the cloud forest area covered with fog in the montane regions by around 5-13% and raised the orographic cloud bases by about 25-75 m in the afternoon. The model results show that further deforestation in the lowland and premontane regions would lead to around 15% decrease in the cloud forest area covered with fog and also raise the orographic cloud base heights by up to 125 m in the afternoon. The simulations show that deforestation in the lowland and premontane regions raises surface sensible heat fluxes and decreases latent heat fluxes. This warms the air temperature and

  2. Ecohydrological controls of watershed response to land use change in the montane cloud forest zone in Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Asbjornsen, H.; Alvarado-Barrientos, M. S.; Bruijnzeel, L. A.; Dawson, T. E.; Geissert, D. R.; Goldsmith, G. R.; Gomez-Cardenas, M.; Gomez-Tagle, A.; Gotsch, S.; Holwerda, F.; McDonnell, J. J.; Munoz Villers, L. E.; Tobon, C.

    2012-12-01

    Land use conversion and climate change threaten the hydrological services from tropical montane cloud forest (TMCFs) regions, but knowledge about the ecohydrological mechanisms controlling catchment response is limited. This project traced the hydrologic sources, fluxes and flowpaths across the atmosphere-plant-soil-stream continuum under different land cover types (degraded pasture, regenerating forest, mature forest, pine reforestation) in a seasonally dry TMCF in Veracruz, Mexico. We used hydrological (cloud water interception, CWI; streamflow) and ecophysiological measurements (transpiration, E; foliar uptake, FU) in combination with stable isotope techniques to identify the key ecohydrological processes of each land cover and quantify the hydrological effects of TMCF conversion. Results revealed that CWI was only ≤2% of total annual rainfall due to low fog occurrence and wind speeds. Fog without rainfall reduced E by a factor of 4-5 relative to sunny conditions and by a factor of 2 relative to overcast conditions, whereas the water 'gained' from the fog suppression effect was ~80-100mm year-1 relative to sunny conditions. At the canopy scale, FU resulted in the recovery of 9% of total E, suggesting a crucial role in alleviating plant water deficit; nevertheless, it was not sufficient to compensate for the 17% water loss from nighttime E. Trees primarily utilized water from 30-50cm soil depth, while water reaching the stream was derived from deep, 'old' water that was distinct from both 'new' rainwater and water accessed by plants. These findings suggest that plants mainly access a more tightly bound soil water pool that does not actively mix with the more mobile water recharging deep soil and groundwater pools. Soils had high porosity, saturated conductivity, infiltration rates, and water storage capacity, which contributed to the relatively low rainfall-runoff responses, mainly generated from deep subsurface flowpaths. Results showed that conversion of

  3. Salvage logging in the montane ash eucalypt forests of the Central Highlands of Victoria and its potential impacts on biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Lindenmayer, D B; Ought, K

    2006-08-01

    The two major forms of disturbance in the montane ash eucalypt forests of the Central Highlands of Victoria (southeastern Australia) are clearfell logging and unplanned wildfires. Since the 1930s wildfire has been followed by intensive and extensive salvage-logging operations, which may proceed for many years after a wildfire has occurred. Although applied widely, the potential effects of salvage logging on native flora and fauna have been poorly studied. Our data indicate that the abundance of large trees with hollows is significantly reduced in forests subject to salvage harvesting. This has implications for thepersistence of an array of such cavity-using vertebrates as the endangered arboreal marsupial, Leadbeater's possum (Gymnobelidues leadbeateri). Salvage logging also reduces the prevalence of multiaged montane ash forests--places that typically support the highest diversity of arboreal marsupials and forest birds. Limited research has been conducted on the effects of salvage logging on plants; thus, we constructed hypotheses about potential impacts for further testing based on known responses to clearfell logging and key life history attributes. We predict many species, such as vegetatively resprouting tree ferns, will decline, as they do after clearfelling. We also suggest that seed regenerators, which typically regenerate well after fire or conventional clearfelling, will decline after salvage logging because the stimulation for germination (fire) takes place prior to mechanical disturbance (logging). Understoryplant communities in salvage-logged areas will be dominated by a smaller suite of species, and those that are wind dispersed, have viable soil-stored seed remaining after salvage logging, or have deep rhizomes are likely to be advantaged. We recommend the following improvements to salvage-logging policies that may better incorporate conservation needs in Victorian montane ash forests: (1) exemption of salvage logging from some areas (e.g., old

  4. Spatial requirements of free-ranging Huon tree kangaroos, Dendrolagus matschiei (Macropodidae), in upper montane forest.

    PubMed

    Porolak, Gabriel; Dabek, Lisa; Krockenberger, Andrew K

    2014-01-01

    Tree kangaroos (Macropodidae, Dendrolagus) are some of Australasia's least known mammals. However, there is sufficient evidence of population decline and local extinctions that all New Guinea tree kangaroos are considered threatened. Understanding spatial requirements is important in conservation and management. Expectations from studies of Australian tree kangaroos and other rainforest macropodids suggest that tree kangaroos should have small discrete home ranges with the potential for high population densities, but there are no published estimates of spatial requirements of any New Guinea tree kangaroo species. Home ranges of 15 Huon tree kangaroos, Dendrolagus matschiei, were measured in upper montane forest on the Huon Peninsula, Papua New Guinea. The home range area was an average of 139.6±26.5 ha (100% MCP; n = 15) or 81.8±28.3 ha (90% harmonic mean; n = 15), and did not differ between males and females. Home ranges of D. matschiei were 40-100 times larger than those of Australian tree kangaroos or other rainforest macropods, possibly due to the impact of hunting reducing density, or low productivity of their high altitude habitat. Huon tree kangaroos had cores of activity within their range at 45% (20.9±4.1 ha) and 70% (36.6±7.5 ha) harmonic mean isopleths, with little overlap (4.8±2.9%; n = 15 pairs) between neighbouring females at the 45% isopleth, but, unlike the Australian species, extensive overlap between females (20.8±5.5%; n = 15 pairs) at the complete range (90% harmonic mean). Males overlapped each other and females to a greater extent than did pairs of females. From core areas and overlap, the density of female D. matschiei was one per 19.4 ha. Understanding the cause of this low density is crucial in gaining greater understanding of variations in density of tree kangaroos across the landscape. We consider the potential role of habitat fragmentation, productivity and hunting pressure in limiting tree kangaroo density in New

  5. Transpiration and forest structure in relation to soil waterlogging in a Hawaiian montane cloud forest.

    PubMed

    Santiago, Louis S.; Goldstein, Guillermo; Meinzer, Frederick C.; Fownes, James H.; Mueller-Dombois, Dieter

    2000-05-01

    Transpiration, leaf characteristics and forest structure in Metrosideros polymorpha Gaud. stands growing in East Maui, Hawaii were investigated to assess physiological limitations associated with flooding as a mechanism of reduced canopy leaf area in waterlogged sites. Whole-tree sap flow, stomatal conductance, microclimate, soil oxidation-reduction potential, stand basal area and leaf area index (LAI) were measured on moderately sloped, drained sites with closed canopies (90%) and on level, waterlogged sites with open canopies (50-60%). The LAI was measured with a new technique based on enlarged photographs of individual tree crowns and allometric relationships. Sap flow was scaled to the stand level by multiplying basal area-normalized sap flow by stand basal area. Level sites had lower soil redox potentials, lower mean stand basal area, lower LAI, and a higher degree of soil avoidance by roots than sloped sites. Foliar nutrients and leaf mass per area (LMA) in M. polymorpha were similar between level and sloped sites. Stomatal conductance was similar for M. polymorpha saplings on both sites, but decreased with increasing tree height (r(2) = 0.72; P < 0.001). Stand transpiration estimates ranged from 79 to 89% of potential evapotranspiration (PET) for sloped sites and from 28 to 51% of PET for level sites. Stand transpiration estimates were strongly correlated with LAI (r(2) = 0.96; P < 0.001). Whole-tree transpiration was lower at level sites with waterlogged soils, but was similar or higher for trees on level sites when normalized by leaf area. Trees on level sites had a smaller leaf area per stem diameter than trees on sloped sites, suggesting that soil oxygen deficiency may reduce leaf area. However, transpiration per unit leaf area did not vary substantially, so leaf-level physiological behavior was conserved, regardless of differences in tree leaf area.

  6. Surface Energy Exchange in a Tropical Montane Cloud Forest Environment: Flux Partitioning, and Seasonal and Land Cover-Related Variations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holwerda, F.; Alvarado-Barrientos, M. S.; González-Martínez, T.

    2015-12-01

    Relationships between seasonal climate, land cover and surface energy exchange in tropical montane cloud forest (TMCF) environments are poorly understood. Yet, understanding these linkages is essential to evaluating the impacts of land use and climate change on the functioning of these unique ecosystems. In central Veracruz, Mexico, TMCF occurs between 1100 and 2500 m asl. The canopy of this forest consists of a mix of deciduous and broadleaved-evergreen tree species, the former of which shed their leaves for a short period during the dry season. The aim of this study was to quantify the surface energy balance, and seasonal variations therein, for TMCF, as well as for shaded coffee (CO) and sugarcane (SU), two important land uses that have replaced TMCF at lower elevations. Sensible (H) and latent heat (LE) fluxes were measured using eddy covariance and sap flow methods. Other measurements included: micrometeorological variables, soil heat flux, soil moisture and vegetation characteristics. Partitioning of available energy (A) into H and LE showed important seasonal changes as well as differences among land covers. During the wet-season month of July, average midday Bowen ratios for sunny days were lowest and least variable among land covers: 0.5 in TMCF and SU versus 0.7 in CO. However, because of higher A, along with lower Bowen ratio with respect to CO, LE over TMCF was ca. 20% higher compared to CO and SU. During the late dry-season months of March and April, average midday Bowen ratios for sunny days were generally much higher and more variable among land covers. The higher Bowen ratios indicated a reduction of LE under the drier conditions prevailing (low soil moisture and high VPD), something rarely observed in TMCFs. Moreover, because some trees were still partially leafless in March, LE over TMCF was about half that over CO and SU, suggesting an important effect of phenology on energy exchange of this TMCF. Observed differences between seasons and land

  7. Increased carbon flux with rising mean annual temperature does not alter ecosystem carbon storage in a tropical montane wet forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Selmants, P.; Litton, C. M.; Giardina, C. P.

    2013-12-01

    Ecological theory and existing studies agree that climate warming will increase carbon fluxes between terrestrial ecosystems and the atmosphere in the absence of water and nutrient limitations. However, it remains unclear how increased carbon input to and loss from terrestrial ecosystems will affect overall ecosystem carbon storage, which has important implications for potential feedbacks to climate change. Here we use a well-constrained model ecological gradient to quantify how increased mean annual temperature (MAT) affects carbon fluxes and ecosystem carbon storage in above- and belowground live biomass and detritus across nine permanent plots representing a 5.2ο C MAT gradient in tropical montane wet forests on the Island of Hawaii. Aboveground net primary productivity increased by 1 Mg ha-1 y-1 and the residence time of carbon in the forest floor declined by ~3 months for each 1ο C rise in MAT across the gradient, indicating a substantial increase in both carbon input and output with rising MAT. Despite these large increases in carbon flux, ecosystem carbon storage showed minimal sensitivity to MAT. Live biomass carbon did not vary predictably as a function of temperature. Detrital carbon declined by ~14 Mg ha-1 for each 1ο C rise in temperature, but this decline was driven entirely by coarse woody debris and litter, which together make up < 10% on average of total ecosystem C across the MAT gradient. The largest detrital pool, soil carbon, did not vary with MAT, averaging 48% of total ecosystem carbon across the gradient. Overall, total ecosystem carbon storage did not vary with MAT, averaging ~550 Mg ha-1 across the gradient. In addition, the distribution of ecosystem carbon in live biomass vs. detritus remained relatively constant at ~44% and ~56%, respectively. Because our MAT gradient does not vary with respect to factors other than temperature (i.e., dominant vegetation, substrate type and age, soil water balance, and disturbance history), these

  8. Nitrogen cycling in canopy soils of tropical montane forests responds rapidly to indirect N and P fertilization.

    PubMed

    Matson, Amanda L; Corre, Marife D; Veldkamp, Edzo

    2014-12-01

    Although the canopy can play an important role in forest nutrient cycles, canopy-based processes are often overlooked in studies on nutrient deposition. In areas of nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) deposition, canopy soils may retain a significant proportion of atmospheric inputs, and also receive indirect enrichment through root uptake followed by throughfall or recycling of plant litter in the canopy. We measured net and gross rates of N cycling in canopy soils of tropical montane forests along an elevation gradient and assessed indirect effects of elevated nutrient inputs to the forest floor. Net N cycling rates were measured using the buried bag method. Gross N cycling rates were measured using (15) N pool dilution techniques. Measurements took place in the field, in the wet and dry season, using intact cores of canopy soil from three elevations (1000, 2000 and 3000 m). The forest floor had been fertilized biannually with moderate amounts of N and P for 4 years; treatments included control, N, P, and N + P. In control plots, gross rates of NH4 (+) transformations decreased with increasing elevation; gross rates of NO3 (-) transformations did not exhibit a clear elevation trend, but were significantly affected by season. Nutrient-addition effects were different at each elevation, but combined N + P generally increased N cycling rates at all elevations. Results showed that canopy soils could be a significant N source for epiphytes as well as contributing up to 23% of total (canopy + forest floor) mineral N production in our forests. In contrast to theories that canopy soils are decoupled from nutrient cycling in forest floor soil, N cycling in our canopy soils was sensitive to slight changes in forest floor nutrient availability. Long-term atmospheric N and P deposition may lead to increased N cycling, but also increased mineral N losses from the canopy soil system.

  9. Tropical Andean Forests Are Highly Susceptible to Nutrient Inputs—Rapid Effects of Experimental N and P Addition to an Ecuadorian Montane Forest

    PubMed Central

    Homeier, Jürgen; Hertel, Dietrich; Camenzind, Tessa; Cumbicus, Nixon L.; Maraun, Mark; Martinson, Guntars O.; Poma, L. Nohemy; Rillig, Matthias C.; Sandmann, Dorothee; Scheu, Stefan; Veldkamp, Edzo; Wilcke, Wolfgang; Wullaert, Hans; Leuschner, Christoph

    2012-01-01

    Tropical regions are facing increasing atmospheric inputs of nutrients, which will have unknown consequences for the structure and functioning of these systems. Here, we show that Neotropical montane rainforests respond rapidly to moderate additions of N (50 kg ha−1 yr−1) and P (10 kg ha−1 yr−1). Monitoring of nutrient fluxes demonstrated that the majority of added nutrients remained in the system, in either soil or vegetation. N and P additions led to not only an increase in foliar N and P concentrations, but also altered soil microbial biomass, standing fine root biomass, stem growth, and litterfall. The different effects suggest that trees are primarily limited by P, whereas some processes—notably aboveground productivity—are limited by both N and P. Highly variable and partly contrasting responses of different tree species suggest marked changes in species composition and diversity of these forests by nutrient inputs in the long term. The unexpectedly fast response of the ecosystem to moderate nutrient additions suggests high vulnerability of tropical montane forests to the expected increase in nutrient inputs. PMID:23071734

  10. Climate change and forest disturbance effect on runoff response in montane basin. Case study - Vydra basin, Sumava Mountains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Langhammer, Jakub; Su, Ye; Kaiglová, Jana

    2014-05-01

    Climate change, along with the changes in land use, is one of the key factors driving the changes in hydrological regimes and runoff response in basins. In montane regions, the long-term, as well as abrupt changes may result in significant shifts in runoff regime, especially in relation to extreme runoff events. This study aims to discuss the effect of two key driving forces - climate change and extensive forest disturbance in montane mid-latitude environment. The study area of the Vydra basin is located in the headwater regions of the Sumava Mountains at the border between the Czech Republic and Germany, Central Europe. The study area has undergone an Increase in yearly temperature and extensive forest disturbance resulting from windstorms, consequent bark beetle outbreak and clear-cutting for forest management simultaneously. Various data sources were used for the analyses in this study. The global climate model CM2 was used for reanalysis of historical time series of temperatures since 1871. Selected climate change scenarios of the same model were used for identifying the prospective changes in trends and seasonality of climate parameters. Statistical techniques based on measured data from both spatial and temporal resolutions in the study area were used to detect the co-relationship between hydrologic and meteorological variables for testing the homogeneity of data and identifying the points of change. Furthermore, the daily discharge and precipitation monitored by CHMI at the outlet of the basin were used to analyze various aspects of runoff change. There was an assessed rainfall-runoff relation, runoff variability, changes in seasonal runoff distribution and changes in frequency and seasonality of peak flows. The identified extent and timing of changes are notable and they can be attributed to the cumulative effects of two key driving forces: climate change and forest disturbance, both affecting runoff in the study area. The impact of the two drivers on

  11. Stand Structural Controls on Evapotranspiration in Native and Invaded Tropical Montane Cloud Forest in Hawai'i

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giambelluca, T. W.; Delay, J. K.; Asner, G. P.; Martin, R. E.; Nullet, M. A.; Huang, M.; Mudd, R. G.; Takahashi, M.

    2008-12-01

    Tropical montane cloud forests (TMCFs) in Hawai'i are important zones of water input and stores of critically important native plant and animal species. Invasion by alien tree species threatens these forests and may alter the hydrological services they provide. At two TMCF sites in Hawai'i, one within native Metrosideros polymorpha forest and the other at a site heavily invaded by Psidium cattleianum, we are conducting measurements of stand-level evapotranspiration (ET), transpiration (using sapflow techniques), energy balance, and related processes. Previously presented results showed that ET as a function of available energy was 27% higher at the invaded site than the native site, with the difference rising to 53% during dry- canopy periods. In this presentation, mechanisms for the observed higher ET rate at the invaded site are explored. The difference in measured xylem flow velocities of native and alien trees cannot explain the observed stand level ET difference. Tree basal area is lower at the invaded site than the native site, again contrary to the ET difference. However, the alien trees have much smaller stem diameters, on average, than the native trees, with little or no heartwood. Hence, the cross-sectional xylem area is much greater in the invaded stand, facilitating higher transpiration rates. These results demonstrate the importance of stand structural controls on ET and raise questions about whether higher ET is a transient feature of the succession or a persistent characteristic of invasive trees.

  12. Mapping the montane cloud forest of Taiwan using 12 year MODIS-derived ground fog frequency data.

    PubMed

    Schulz, Hans Martin; Li, Ching-Feng; Thies, Boris; Chang, Shih-Chieh; Bendix, Jörg

    2017-01-01

    Up until now montane cloud forest (MCF) in Taiwan has only been mapped for selected areas of vegetation plots. This paper presents the first comprehensive map of MCF distribution for the entire island. For its creation, a Random Forest model was trained with vegetation plots from the National Vegetation Database of Taiwan that were classified as "MCF" or "non-MCF". This model predicted the distribution of MCF from a raster data set of parameters derived from a digital elevation model (DEM), Landsat channels and texture measures derived from them as well as ground fog frequency data derived from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer. While the DEM parameters and Landsat data predicted much of the cloud forest's location, local deviations in the altitudinal distribution of MCF linked to the monsoonal influence as well as the Massenerhebung effect (causing MCF in atypically low altitudes) were only captured once fog frequency data was included. Therefore, our study suggests that ground fog data are most useful for accurately mapping MCF.

  13. A Comparison of the Pitfall Trap, Winkler Extractor and Berlese Funnel for Sampling Ground-Dwelling Arthropods in Tropical Montane Cloud Forests

    PubMed Central

    Sabu, Thomas K.; Shiju, Raj T.; Vinod, KV.; Nithya, S.

    2011-01-01

    Little is known about the ground-dwelling arthropod diversity in tropical montane cloud forests (TMCF). Due to unique habitat conditions in TMCFs with continuously wet substrates and a waterlogged forest floor along with the innate biases of the pitfall trap, Berlese funnel and Winkler extractor are certain to make it difficult to choose the most appropriate method to sample the ground-dwelling arthropods in TMCFs. Among the three methods, the Winkler extractor was the most efficient method for quantitative data and pitfall trapping for qualitative data for most groups. Inclusion of floatation method as a complementary method along with the Winkler extractor would enable a comprehensive quantitative survey of ground-dwelling arthropods. Pitfall trapping is essential for both quantitative and qualitative sampling of Diplopoda, Opiliones, Orthoptera, and Diptera. The Winkler extractor was the best quantitative method for Psocoptera, Araneae, Isopoda, and Formicidae; and the Berlese funnel was best for Collembola and Chilopoda. For larval forms of different insect orders and the Acari, all the three methods were equally effective. PMID:21529148

  14. Nutrient addition modifies phosphatase activities along an altitudinal gradient in a tropical montane forest in Southern Ecuador

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dietrich, Karla; Spoeri, Elena; Oelmann, Yvonne

    2016-02-01

    Atmospheric nutrient deposition and climate change are expected to endanger the diversity of tropical forest ecosystems. Nitrogen (N) deposition might influence nutrient fluxes beyond the N cycle by a concomitant increased demand for other nutritional elements such as phosphorus (P). Organisms might respond to the increased P demand by enhanced activity of enzymes involved in releasing inorganic P from organic matter (OM). Our aims were to assess the effect of i) climate shifts (approximated by an altitudinal gradient), and ii) nutrient addition (N, P, N+P) on phosphatase activity (PA) in organic layer and mineral soil of a tropical montane rainforest in Southern Ecuador. A nutrient manipulation experiment (NUMEX) was set up along an altitudinal gradient (1000, 2000, and 3000 m a.s.l.). We determined PA and inorganic and total P concentrations. PA at 1000 m was significantly lower (mean ± standard error: 48 ± 20 µmol p-NP g-1 dm h-1) as compared to 2000 m and 3000 m (119 ± 11 and 137 ± 19, respectively). One explanation might be that very rapid decomposition of OM at 1000 m results in very thin organic layers reducing the stabilization of enzymes and thus, resulting in leaching loss of enzymes under the humid tropical climate. We found no effect of N addition on PA neither in the organic layer nor in mineral soil, probably because of the low nutrient addition rates that showed ambiguous results so far on productivity measures as a proxy for P demand. In the organic layers of P and N+P treatments, we found decreased PA and increased concentrations of inorganic P. This indicates that the surplus of inorganic P reduced the biosynthesis of phosphatase enzymes. PA in megadiverse montane rainforests is likely to be unaffected by increased atmospheric N deposition but reduced upon atmospheric P deposition.

  15. Assessing how seasonal hydrological balance has changed during the warming 20th century in the montane forests of Southeast Asian monsoon region using a stable isotope dendroclimatology approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, M.; Stott, L. D.

    2010-12-01

    Tropical montane forests act as water catchment and host of biodiversity in the Southeast Asian monsoon region, and understanding how their hydrological conditions change with global warming is vitally important. Global climate model simulations project enhanced moisture cycle in the tropics, which would cause stronger summer monsoon precipitations, but on the other hand the adiabatic lapse rate would be shifted towards a moister condition (amplification of warming at high elevation), inhibiting dry season orographic lifting cloud/fog formation (lifting cloud base hypothesis), enhancing evapo-transpiration, and leading to a net moisture loss during winter dry season. In this study, we have attempted to investigate how the seasonal moisture balance in Southeast Asia has evolved in response to these influences through the 20th century using the oxygen isotopic composition (δ18O) of subannual tree cellulose samples extracted from the annual rings of pine trees that grow in Doi Chiang Dao, a limestone mountain in northern Thailand. At this location the δ18O of cellulose exhibits distinctive annual cycles of up to 12‰, which is primarily a reflection of both the so-called ‘isotope amount effect’ that is associated with the strong monsoon precipitation during summer wet season and the moisture availability from different sources during winter dry season. We have demonstrated that tree cellulose δ18O could be used as a proxy for regional monsoon strength by showing that the annual mean cellulose δ18O correlate significantly with All India Rainfall, Webster-Yang monsoon index, as well as with both local and regional monsoon precipitation. ENSO is the dominant influence on interannual rainfall variability and this is well expressed in the interannual cellulose δ18O record. Using a 21-year moving window correlation analysis we find a weakening of ENSO influence after 1980, coinciding with the most rapid atmospheric warming. We expect to analyze older trees to

  16. Mapping the montane cloud forest of Taiwan using 12 year MODIS-derived ground fog frequency data

    PubMed Central

    Li, Ching-Feng; Thies, Boris; Chang, Shih-Chieh; Bendix, Jörg

    2017-01-01

    Up until now montane cloud forest (MCF) in Taiwan has only been mapped for selected areas of vegetation plots. This paper presents the first comprehensive map of MCF distribution for the entire island. For its creation, a Random Forest model was trained with vegetation plots from the National Vegetation Database of Taiwan that were classified as “MCF” or “non-MCF”. This model predicted the distribution of MCF from a raster data set of parameters derived from a digital elevation model (DEM), Landsat channels and texture measures derived from them as well as ground fog frequency data derived from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer. While the DEM parameters and Landsat data predicted much of the cloud forest’s location, local deviations in the altitudinal distribution of MCF linked to the monsoonal influence as well as the Massenerhebung effect (causing MCF in atypically low altitudes) were only captured once fog frequency data was included. Therefore, our study suggests that ground fog data are most useful for accurately mapping MCF. PMID:28245279

  17. Two Lactarius species associated with a relict Fagus grandifolia var. mexicana population in a Mexican montane cloud forest.

    PubMed

    Montoya, L; Haug, I; Bandala, V M

    2010-01-01

    Ectomycorrhizal (EM) fleshy fungi are being monitored in a population of Fagus grandifolia var. mexicana persisting in a montane cloud forest refuge on a volcano in a subtropical region of central Veracruz (eastern Mexico). The population of Fagus studied represents one of the 10 recognized forest fragments still housing this tree genus in Mexico. This is the first attempt to document EM fungi associated with this tree species in Mexico. We present evidence of the ectomycorrhizal symbiosis for Lactarius badiopallescens and L. cinereus with this endemic tree. Species identification of Lactarius on Fagus grandifolia var. mexicana was based on the comparison of DNAsequences (ITS rDNA) of spatiotemporally co-occurring basidiomes and EM root tips. The host of the EM tips was identified by comparison of the large subunit of the ribulose-bisphosphate carboxylase gene (rbcL). The occurrence of Lactarius badiopallescens and L. cinereus populations in the area of study represent the southernmost record known to date of these two species in North America and are new for the Neotropical Lactarius mycota. Descriptions coupled with illustrations of macro- and micromorphological features of basidiomes as well as photographs of ectomycorrhizas are presented.

  18. A new species of the Rhinella margaritifera species group (Anura, Bufonidae) from the montane forest of the Selva Central, Peru.

    PubMed

    Moravec, Jiří; Lehr, Edgar; Cusi, Juan Carlos; Córdova, Jesús H; Gvoždík, Václav

    2014-01-01

    We describe a new species of the bufonid toad genus Rhinella from transition montane forest of the buffer zones of the Yanachaga-Chemillén National Park and the Pui Pui Protected Forest (eastern slopes of Andes, Selva Central, Peru). The new species belongs to the Rhinella margaritifera species group (confirmed by mtDNA data) and differs from all its members by the absence of tympanic membrane and tympanic annulus. It is characterized by medium size (SVL 57.5-65.5 mm, n = 5), moderately developed cranial crests, absence of neural crest of vertebrae, absence of bone protrusion at angle of jaw, presence of lateral rows of enlarged tubercles, and absence of subgular vocal sac and vocal slits in males. In addition, based on the molecular phylogenetic analyses of selected Rhinella species we propose the monophylum containing R. chavin, R. festae, R. macrorhina, R. manu, R. nesiotes, R. rostrata, and R. yanachaga as a new species group under the name Rhinella festae species group.

  19. Complex Spatial Structure in a Population of Didymopanax pittieri, A Tree of Wind-Exposed Lower Montane Rain Forest

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lawton, Robert M.; Lawton, Robert O.

    2010-01-01

    Didymopanax pittieri is a common shade-intolerant tree colonizing treefall gaps in the elfin forests on windswept ridgecrests in the lower montane rain forests of the Cordillera de Tilarain, Costa Rica. All D. pittieri taller than > 0.5 m in a 5.2-ha elfin forested portion of a gridded study watershed in the Monteverde Cloud Forest Preserve were located, mapped, and measured. This local population of D. pittieri is spatially inhomogeneous, in that density increases with increasing wind exposure; D. pittieri are more abundant near ridge crests than lower on windward slopes. The important and ubiquitous phenomenon of spatial inhomogeneity in population density is addressed and corrected for in spatial analyses by the application of the inhomogeneous version of Ripley's K. The spatial patterns of four size classes of D. pittieri (<5 cm dbh, 5-10 cm dbh, 10-20 cm dbh, and> 20 cm dbh) were investigated. Within the large-scale trend in density driven by wind exposure, D. pittieri saplings are clumped at the scale of treefall gaps and at the scale of patches of aggregated gaps. D. pittieri 5-10 cm dbh are randomly distributed, apparently due to competitive thinning of sapling clumps during the early stages of gap-phase regeneration. D. pittieri larger than 10 cm dbh are overdispersed at a scale larger than that of patches of gaps. Natural disturbance can influence the distribution of shade intolerant tree populations at several different spatial scales, and can have discordant effects at different life history stages.

  20. The impacts of selective logging and clear-cutting on woody plant diversity after 40years of natural recovery in a tropical montane rain forest, south China.

    PubMed

    Ding, Yi; Zang, Runguo; Lu, Xinghui; Huang, Jihong

    2017-02-01

    Historically, clear-cutting and selective logging have been the commercial logging practices. However, the effect of these pervasive timber extraction methods on biodiversity in tropical forests is still poorly understood. In this study, we compared abiotic factors, species diversity, community composition, and structure between ca. 40-year-old clear-cut (MCC); ca. 40-year-old selectively logged (MSL); and tropical old growth montane rain forests (MOG) on Hainan Island, China. Results showed that there were a large number of trees with a diameter at breast height (DBH) <30cm in the two logged forests. Additionally, the two logged forests only had 40% of the basal area of the large trees (DBH≥30cm) found in the old growth forest. The species richness and Shannon-Wiener diversity indices generally showed no difference among the three forest types. MCC had 70% of the species richness of the large trees in the MOG, whereas MSL and MOG had similar species richness. High value timber species had similar species richness among the three forest types, but a lower abundance and basal area of large trees in MCC. The species composition was distinct between the three forests. Large trees belonging to the family Fagaceae dominated in the logged forests and played a more important role in the old growth forest. Huge trees (DBH≥70cm) were rare in MCC, but were frequently found in MSL. Most abiotic factors varied inconsistently among the three forest types and few variables related to species diversity, community structure and composition. Our study indicated that MSL had a relatively faster recovery rate than MCC in a tropical montane rain forest after 40years, but both logged forests had a high recovery potential over a long-term.

  1. [Physical and chemical properties of throughfall in main forest types of secondary forest ecosystem in montane regions of eastern Liaoning Province, China].

    PubMed

    Xi, Xing-jun; Yan, Qiao-ling; Yu, Li-zhong; Zhu, Jiao-jun; Zhang, Cai-hong; Zhang, Jin-xin; Liu, Chang-xia

    2009-09-01

    From July to September 2008, a measurement was made on the physical and chemical properties of bulk precipitation and throughfall in five main forest types, i.e., larch plantation (LP), Fraxinus rhynchophylla stand (FR), mixed forest stand (MF), Korean pine plantation (KP), and Mongolian oak stand (MO), of secondary forest ecosystem in montane regions of eastern Liaoning Province, China. Comparing with bulk precipitation, the throughfall in the five forest types was significantly acidified (P < 0.05), and the acidification degree was in the order of KP > LP > MF > MO > FR. The conductivity and total dissolved solids of the throughfall increased significantly (P < 0.05), and were in the sequence of MO > FR > LP > MF > KP. The dissolved oxygen concentration of the throughfall lowered significantly (P < 0.05), with the rank of KP > MF > FR > MO > LP, while the Cl- concentration increased significantly, ranked as LP > MO > MF > FR > KP. The NO3-concentrations of the throughfall in FR, MO and MF were higher, while those in LP and KP were lower than that of the bulk precipitation.

  2. Fine-Scale Vertical Stratification and Guild Composition of Saproxylic Beetles in Lowland and Montane Forests: Similar Patterns despite Low Faunal Overlap

    PubMed Central

    Weiss, Matthias; Procházka, Jiří; Schlaghamerský, Jiří; Cizek, Lukas

    2016-01-01

    Objective The finer scale patterns of arthropod vertical stratification in forests are rarely studied and poorly understood. Further, there are no studies investigating whether and how altitude affects arthropod vertical stratification in temperate forests. We therefore investigated the fine-scale vertical stratification of diversity and guild structure of saproxylic beetles in temperate lowland and montane forests and compared the resulting patterns between the two habitats. Methods The beetles were sampled with flight intercept traps arranged into vertical transects (sampling heights 0.4, 1.2, 7, 14, and 21 m). A triplet of such transects was installed in each of the five sites in the lowland and in the mountains; 75 traps were used in each forest type. Results 381 species were collected in the lowlands and 236 species in the mountains. Only 105 species (21%) were found at both habitats; in the montane forest as well as in the lowlands, the species richness peaked at 1.2 m, and the change in assemblage composition was most rapid near the ground. The assemblages clearly differed between the understorey (0.4 m, 1.2 m) and the canopy (7 m, 14 m, 21 m) and between the two sampling heights within the understorey, but less within the canopy. The stratification was better pronounced in the lowland, where canopy assemblages were richer than those near the forest floor (0.4 m). In the mountains the samples from 14 and 21 m were more species poor than those from the lower heights. The guild structure was similar in both habitats. Conclusions The main patterns of vertical stratification and guild composition were strikingly similar between the montane and the lowland forest despite the low overlap of their faunas. The assemblages of saproxylic beetles were most stratified near ground. The comparisons of species richness between canopy and understorey may thus give contrasting results depending on the exact sampling height in the understorey. PMID:26978783

  3. Characterizing the Source Water for Montane Meadows to Assess Resiliency under Changing Hydroclimatic Condition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yarnell, S. M.; Peek, R.; Bell, A.; Weixelman, D.; Viers, J. H.

    2015-12-01

    Ecologically and hydrologically functioning montane meadows provide a variety of ecosystem services and create biological hotspots in high-elevation landscapes. They serve as wetlands that filter water, attenuate floods, sequester carbon, sustain downstream flows, and provide high productivity habitat in typically lower productivity mountain regions. Their importance to watershed quality and health is well recognized, and restoration of meadows is a high priority for resource management agencies and non-governmental organizations. Yet many meadow restoration projects have limited outcomes or fail to achieve the desired effects due to a lack of understanding the underlying hydrological and geomorphic processes inherent to meadows that contribute to their resiliency. Few studies exist on how meadows are sustained through time despite various land use impacts or how the origin of water supplying the meadow (snowmelt-dominated versus regional groundwater-dominated) may influence meadow conditions. Furthermore, as climate conditions continue to change, questions remain regarding which meadows will be most resistant to and resilient from climate warming and thus have the highest potential for successful and sustainable restoration of meadow processes. We discuss these concepts and present two methods for assessing the regional and local contributions of source water to meadows as an indicator of resiliency. On a broad scale, comparisons of satellite imagery using metrics such as normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) for regions with meadows may be useful to detect inter-annual and seasonal variations in meadow wetness and thus indicate meadow sites with larger groundwater sources that are more resilient over time. Locally, use of a hydrogeomorphic typing key that relates water source, geomorphic position, groundwater table elevation, and plant species composition may be useful to detect local groundwater sources that provide greater consistency of conditions and

  4. Defaunation affects Astrocaryum gratum (Arecales: Arecaceae) seed survivorship in a sub-montane tropical forest.

    PubMed

    Aliaga-Rossel, Enzo; Manuel Fragoso, Jos

    2015-03-01

    Animal-plant interactions in Neotropical forests are complex processes. Within these processes, mid- to large-sized mammals consume fruits and seeds from several species; however, because of their size these mammals are overhunted, resulting in defaunated forests. Our objective was to evaluate and compare seed removal and survivorship in a forest with no hunting, a forest with moderate or reduced hunting, and a forest with higher hunting pressure. We examined the interaction between Astrocaryum gratum and white lipped peccary (Tayassu pecari) to tease apart the defaunation process. To isolate and evaluate mammal seed removal rates and to identify the causes of mortality on Agratum, under the three different hunting pressures forests, we used exclosures in each one. In four different forest-patches for each forest, we positioned a block-treatment consisting of three exclosures (total exclusion, peccary exclusion, and control), randomly distributed 5m apart and the block-treatments spaced 50-75 m apart from one another. We established 15 treatments in total for each patch (5 blocks per patch). There were 20 blocks within each forest type. For total exclusion, all vertebrates were excluded using galvanized wire mesh exclosures. The second, the peccary exclusion, was designed to stop peccaries from entering treatment units, providing access only to small vertebrates; larger mammals were able to access the treatment unit by reaching over the sides and the open top; finally, the Control allowed full access for all mammals. Fresh A. gratum fruits were collected from the forest floor under different adult trees throughout the study area. In each exclosure treatment, twenty Agratum seeds were placed, and their removal was recorded. In total, 3 600 seeds were analyzed. Seed survival was lower in unhunted forest compared to areas with moderate hunting and forest with a higher hunt pressure, supporting the hypothesis of the importance of mammals in seed removal. From the

  5. Spatial and Temporal Patterns of Throughfall Amounts and Solutes in a Tropical Montane Forest - Comparisons with Findings From Lowland Rain Forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zimmermann, A.

    2007-05-01

    The diverse tree species composition, irregular shaped tree crowns and a multi-layered forest structure affect the redistribution of rainfall in lower montane rain forests. In addition, abundant epiphyte biomass and associated canopy humus influence spatial patterns of throughfall. The spatial variability of throughfall amounts controls spatial patterns of solute concentrations and deposition. Moreover, the living and dead biomass interacts with the rainwater during the passage through the canopy and creates a chemical variability of its own. Since spatial and temporal patterns are intimately linked, the analysis of temporal solute concentration dynamics is an important step to understand the emerging spatial patterns. I hypothesized that: (1) the spatial variability of volumes and chemical composition of throughfall is particularly high compared with other forests because of the high biodiversity and epiphytism, (2) the temporal stability of the spatial pattern is high because of stable structures in the canopy (e.g. large epiphytes) that show only minor changes during the short term observation period, and (3) the element concentrations decrease with increasing rainfall because of exhausting element pools in the canopy. The study area at 1950 m above sea level is located in the south Ecuadorian Andes far away from anthropogenic emission sources and marine influences. Rain and throughfall were collected from August to October 2005 on an event and within-event basis for five precipitation periods and analyzed for pH, K, Na, Ca, Mg, NH4+, Cl-, NO3-, PO43-, TN, TP and TOC. Throughfall amounts and most of the solutes showed a high spatial variability, thereby the variability of H+, K, Ca, Mg, Cl- and NO3- exceeded those from a Brazilian tropical rain forest. The temporal persistence of the spatial patterns was high for throughfall amounts and varied depending on the solute. Highly persistent time stability patterns were detected for K, Mg and TOC concentrations. Time

  6. Effect of Tree-to-Shrub Type Conversion in Lower Montane Forests of the Sierra Nevada (USA) on Streamflow

    PubMed Central

    Tague, Christina L.; Moritz, Max A.

    2016-01-01

    Higher global temperatures and increased levels of disturbance are contributing to greater tree mortality in many forest ecosystems. These same drivers can also limit forest regeneration, leading to vegetation type conversion. For the Sierra Nevada of California, little is known about how type conversion may affect streamflow, a critical source of water supply for urban, agriculture and environmental purposes. In this paper, we examined the effects of tree-to-shrub type conversion, in combination with climate change, on streamflow in two lower montane forest watersheds in the Sierra Nevada. A spatially distributed ecohydrologic model was used to simulate changes in streamflow, evaporation, and transpiration following type conversion, with an explicit focus on the role of vegetation size and aspect. Model results indicated that streamflow may show negligible change or small decreases following type conversion when the difference between tree and shrub leaf areas is small, partly due to the higher stomatal conductivity and the deep rooting depth of shrubs. In contrast, streamflow may increase when post-conversion shrubs have a small leaf area relative to trees. Model estimates also suggested that vegetation change could have a greater impact on streamflow magnitude than the direct hydrologic impacts of increased temperatures. Temperature increases, however, may have a greater impact on streamflow timing. Tree-to-shrub type conversion increased streamflow only marginally during dry years (annual precipitation < 800 mm), with most streamflow change observed during wetter years. These modeling results underscore the importance of accounting for changes in vegetation communities to accurately characterize future hydrologic regimes for the Sierra Nevada. PMID:27575592

  7. Effect of Tree-to-Shrub Type Conversion in Lower Montane Forests of the Sierra Nevada (USA) on Streamflow.

    PubMed

    Bart, Ryan R; Tague, Christina L; Moritz, Max A

    2016-01-01

    Higher global temperatures and increased levels of disturbance are contributing to greater tree mortality in many forest ecosystems. These same drivers can also limit forest regeneration, leading to vegetation type conversion. For the Sierra Nevada of California, little is known about how type conversion may affect streamflow, a critical source of water supply for urban, agriculture and environmental purposes. In this paper, we examined the effects of tree-to-shrub type conversion, in combination with climate change, on streamflow in two lower montane forest watersheds in the Sierra Nevada. A spatially distributed ecohydrologic model was used to simulate changes in streamflow, evaporation, and transpiration following type conversion, with an explicit focus on the role of vegetation size and aspect. Model results indicated that streamflow may show negligible change or small decreases following type conversion when the difference between tree and shrub leaf areas is small, partly due to the higher stomatal conductivity and the deep rooting depth of shrubs. In contrast, streamflow may increase when post-conversion shrubs have a small leaf area relative to trees. Model estimates also suggested that vegetation change could have a greater impact on streamflow magnitude than the direct hydrologic impacts of increased temperatures. Temperature increases, however, may have a greater impact on streamflow timing. Tree-to-shrub type conversion increased streamflow only marginally during dry years (annual precipitation < 800 mm), with most streamflow change observed during wetter years. These modeling results underscore the importance of accounting for changes in vegetation communities to accurately characterize future hydrologic regimes for the Sierra Nevada.

  8. Evaluation of Forest Recovery over Time and Space Using Permanent Plots Monitored over 30 Years in a Jamaican Montane Rain Forest

    PubMed Central

    Chai, Shauna-Lee; Healey, John R.; Tanner, Edmund V. J.

    2012-01-01

    Conservation of tropical forest biodiversity increasingly depends on its recovery following severe human disturbance. Our ability to measure recovery using current similarity indices suffers from two limitations: different sized individuals are treated as equal, and the indices are proportionate (a community with twice the individuals of every species as compared with the reference community would be assessed as identical). We define an alternative recovery index for trees – the Tanner index, as the mean of the quantitative Bray-Curtis similarity indices of species composition for stem density and for basal area. We used the new index to compare the original (pre-gap) and post-gap composition of five experimental gap plots (each 90–100 m2) and four control plots over 24–35 years in the Blue Mountains of Jamaica. After 24–35 years, these small gaps surrounded by undisturbed forest had recovered 68% of the sum of per species stem density and 29% of the sum of per species basal area, a recovery index of 47%. Four endemic species were especially reduced in density and basal area. With the incorporation of basal area and stem density, our index reduces over-estimations of forest recovery obtained using existing similarity indices (by 24%–41%), and thus yields more accurate estimates of forest conservation status. Finally, our study indicates that the two kinds of comparisons: 1) over time between pre-gap and post-gap composition and 2) over space between gap plots and spatial controls (space-for-time substitution) yield broadly similar results, which supports the value of using space-for-time substitutions in studying forest recovery, at least in this tropical montane forest. PMID:23155417

  9. Simulating carbon stocks and fluxes of an African tropical montane forest with an individual-based forest model.

    PubMed

    Fischer, Rico; Ensslin, Andreas; Rutten, Gemma; Fischer, Markus; Schellenberger Costa, David; Kleyer, Michael; Hemp, Andreas; Paulick, Sebastian; Huth, Andreas

    2015-01-01

    Tropical forests are carbon-dense and highly productive ecosystems. Consequently, they play an important role in the global carbon cycle. In the present study we used an individual-based forest model (FORMIND) to analyze the carbon balances of a tropical forest. The main processes of this model are tree growth, mortality, regeneration, and competition. Model parameters were calibrated using forest inventory data from a tropical forest at Mt. Kilimanjaro. The simulation results showed that the model successfully reproduces important characteristics of tropical forests (aboveground biomass, stem size distribution and leaf area index). The estimated aboveground biomass (385 t/ha) is comparable to biomass values in the Amazon and other tropical forests in Africa. The simulated forest reveals a gross primary production of 24 tcha(-1) yr(-1). Modeling above- and belowground carbon stocks, we analyzed the carbon balance of the investigated tropical forest. The simulated carbon balance of this old-growth forest is zero on average. This study provides an example of how forest models can be used in combination with forest inventory data to investigate forest structure and local carbon balances.

  10. Application of a Hybrid Forest Growth Model to Evaluate Climate Change Impacts on Productivity, Nutrient Cycling and Mortality in a Montane Forest Ecosystem

    PubMed Central

    Seely, Brad; Welham, Clive; Scoullar, Kim

    2015-01-01

    Climate change introduces considerable uncertainty in forest management planning and outcomes, potentially undermining efforts at achieving sustainable practices. Here, we describe the development and application of the FORECAST Climate model. Constructed using a hybrid simulation approach, the model includes an explicit representation of the effect of temperature and moisture availability on tree growth and survival, litter decomposition, and nutrient cycling. The model also includes a representation of the impact of increasing atmospheric CO2 on water use efficiency, but no direct CO2 fertilization effect. FORECAST Climate was evaluated for its ability to reproduce the effects of historical climate on Douglas-fir and lodgepole pine growth in a montane forest in southern British Columbia, Canada, as measured using tree ring analysis. The model was subsequently used to project the long-term impacts of alternative future climate change scenarios on forest productivity in young and established stands. There was a close association between predicted sapwood production and measured tree ring chronologies, providing confidence that model is able to predict the relative impact of annual climate variability on tree productivity. Simulations of future climate change suggest a modest increase in productivity in young stands of both species related to an increase in growing season length. In contrast, results showed a negative impact on stemwood biomass production (particularly in the case of lodgepole pine) for established stands due to increased moisture stress mortality. PMID:26267446

  11. Application of a Hybrid Forest Growth Model to Evaluate Climate Change Impacts on Productivity, Nutrient Cycling and Mortality in a Montane Forest Ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Seely, Brad; Welham, Clive; Scoullar, Kim

    2015-01-01

    Climate change introduces considerable uncertainty in forest management planning and outcomes, potentially undermining efforts at achieving sustainable practices. Here, we describe the development and application of the FORECAST Climate model. Constructed using a hybrid simulation approach, the model includes an explicit representation of the effect of temperature and moisture availability on tree growth and survival, litter decomposition, and nutrient cycling. The model also includes a representation of the impact of increasing atmospheric CO2 on water use efficiency, but no direct CO2 fertilization effect. FORECAST Climate was evaluated for its ability to reproduce the effects of historical climate on Douglas-fir and lodgepole pine growth in a montane forest in southern British Columbia, Canada, as measured using tree ring analysis. The model was subsequently used to project the long-term impacts of alternative future climate change scenarios on forest productivity in young and established stands. There was a close association between predicted sapwood production and measured tree ring chronologies, providing confidence that model is able to predict the relative impact of annual climate variability on tree productivity. Simulations of future climate change suggest a modest increase in productivity in young stands of both species related to an increase in growing season length. In contrast, results showed a negative impact on stemwood biomass production (particularly in the case of lodgepole pine) for established stands due to increased moisture stress mortality.

  12. A multivariate model of plant species richness in forested systems: Old-growth montane forests with a long history of fire

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Laughlin, D.C.; Grace, J.B.

    2006-01-01

    Recently, efforts to develop multivariate models of plant species richness have been extended to include systems where trees play important roles as overstory elements mediating the influences of environment and disturbance on understory richness. We used structural equation modeling to examine the relationship of understory vascular plant species richness to understory abundance, forest structure, topographic slope, and surface fire history in lower montane forests on the North Rim of Grand Canyon National Park, USA based on data from eighty-two 0.1 ha plots. The questions of primary interest in this analysis were: (1) to what degree are influences of trees on understory richness mediated by effects on understory abundance? (2) To what degree are influences of fire history on richness mediated by effects on trees and/or understory abundance? (3) Can the influences of fire history on this system be related simply to time-since-fire or are there unique influences associated with long-term fire frequency? The results we obtained are consistent with the following inferences. First, it appears that pine trees had a strong inhibitory effect on the abundance of understory plants, which in turn led to lower understory species richness. Second, richness declined over time since the last fire. This pattern appears to result from several processes, including (1) a post-fire stimulation of germination, (2) a decline in understory abundance, and (3) an increase over time in pine abundance (which indirectly leads to reduced richness). Finally, once time-since-fire was statistically controlled, it was seen that areas with higher fire frequency have lower richness than expected, which appears to result from negative effects on understory abundance, possibly by depletions of soil nutrients from repeated surface fire. Overall, it appears that at large temporal and spatial scales, surface fire plays an important and complex role in structuring understory plant communities in old

  13. Comparative Population Genomics of African Montane Forest Mammals Support Population Persistence across a Climatic Gradient and Quaternary Climatic Cycles.

    PubMed

    Demos, Terrence C; Kerbis Peterhans, Julian C; Joseph, Tyler A; Robinson, John D; Agwanda, Bernard; Hickerson, Michael J

    2015-01-01

    The Eastern Afromontane biodiversity hotspot (EABH) has the highest concentration of biodiversity in tropical Africa, yet few studies have investigated recent historical diversification processes in EABH lineages. Herein, we analyze restriction-site associated DNA-sequences (RAD-Seq) to study recent historical processes in co-distributed mouse (Hylomyscus) and shrew (Sylvisorex) species complexes, with an aim to better determine how historical paleoenvironmental processes might have contributed to the EABH's high diversity. We analyzed complete SNP matrices of > 50,000 RAD loci to delineate populations, reconstruct the history of isolation and admixture, and discover geographic patterns of genetic partitioning. These analyses demonstrate that persistently unsuitable habitat may have isolated multiple populations distributed across montane habitat islands in the Itombwe Massif and Albertine Rift to the west as well as Mt Elgon and Kenyan Highlands to the east. We detected low genetic diversity in Kenyan Highland populations of both genera, consistent with smaller historical population sizes in this region. We additionally tested predictions that Albertine Rift populations are older and more persistently isolated compared to the Kenyan Highlands. Phylogenetic analyses support greater historical isolation among Albertine Rift populations of both shrews and mice compared to the Kenyan Highlands and suggest that there are genetically isolated populations from both focal genera in the Itombwe Massif, Democratic Republic of Congo. The Albertine Rift ecoregion has the highest mammalian tropical forest species richness per unit area on earth. Our results clearly support accelerating efforts to conserve this diversity.

  14. Flexibility in nest-site choice and nesting success of Turdus rufiventris (Turdidae) in a montane forest in northwestern argentina

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lomascolo, S.B.; Monmany, A.C.; Malizia, A.; Martin, T.E.

    2010-01-01

    We studied the consequences of nest-site choice on nesting success under differing disturbance levels for the Rufous-bellied Thrush (Turdus rufiventris). We compared nest-site choice and nest success between a disturbed site and an undisturbed site in a montane subtropical forest in northwestern Argentina. We found no overall difference in daily predation rate (DPR) between the disturbed and undisturbed sites. However, DPR of nests on bromeliads was significantly lower at the microhabitat level than on other types of subtrates at the disturbed site. T. rufiventris used bromeliads for nesting more often than expected by chance at the disturbed site. DPR did not differ between substrates at the undisturbed site and T. rufiventris used all substrates according to their availability. Nests had higher predation at the disturbed site when DPR on non-bromeliad substrates was compared between disturbed and undisturbed sites. Nest fate was independent of nest height. Our results suggest T. rufiventris' flexibility in nest-site choice, as reflected by increased use of the safest sites, i.e., bromeliads, in the disturbed site compared to the undisturbed site, may allow this species to survive in an otherwise much riskier habitat. Our results illustrate how microhabitat-scale effects can mediate landscape scale effects. ?? 2010 by the Wilson Ornithological Society.

  15. Physiological Responses of Two Epiphytic Bryophytes to Nitrogen, Phosphorus and Sulfur Addition in a Subtropical Montane Cloud Forest.

    PubMed

    Chen, Xi; Liu, Wen-Yao; Song, Liang; Li, Su; Wu, Yi; Shi, Xian-Meng; Huang, Jun-Biao; Wu, Chuan-Sheng

    2016-01-01

    Atmospheric depositions pose significant threats to biodiversity and ecosystem function. However, the underlying physiological mechanisms are not well understood, and few studies have considered the combined effects and interactions of multiple pollutants. This in situ study explored the physiological responses of two epiphytic bryophytes to combined addition of nitrogen, phosphorus and sulfur. We investigated the electrical conductivity (EC), total chlorophyll concentration (Chl), nutrient stoichiometry and chlorophyll fluorescence signals in a subtropical montane cloud forest in south-west China. The results showed that enhanced fertilizer additions imposed detrimental effects on bryophytes, and the combined enrichment of simulated fertilization exerted limited synergistic effects in their natural environments. On the whole, EC, Chl, the effective quantum yield of photosystem II (ΦPSII) and photochemical quenching (qP) were the more reliable indicators of increased artificial fertilization. However, conclusions on nutrient stoichiometry should be drawn cautiously concerning the saturation uptake and nutrient interactions in bryophytes. Finally, we discuss the limitations of prevailing fertilization experiments and emphasize the importance of long-term data available for future investigations.

  16. Habitat moisture is an important driver of patterns of sap flow and water balance in tropical montane cloud forest epiphytes.

    PubMed

    Darby, Alexander; Draguljić, Danel; Glunk, Andrew; Gotsch, Sybil G

    2016-10-01

    Microclimate in the tropical montane cloud forest (TMCF) is variable on both spatial and temporal scales and can lead to large fluctuations in both leaf-level transpiration and whole plant water use. While variation in transpiration has been found in TMCFs, the influence of different microclimatic drivers on plant water relations in this ecosystem has been relatively understudied. Within the TMCF, epiphytes may be particularly affected by natural variation in microclimate due to their partial or complete disassociation from soil resources. In this study, we examined the effects of seasonal microclimate on whole plant water balance in epiphytes in both an observational and a manipulative experiment. We also evaluated the effects of different microclimatic drivers using three hierarchical linear (mixed) models. On average, 31 % of total positive sap flow was recovered via foliar water uptake (FWU) over the course of the study. We found that precipitation was the greatest driver of foliar water uptake and nighttime sap flow in our study species and that both VPD and precipitation were important drivers to daytime sap flow. We also found that despite adaptations to withstand seasonal drought, an extended dry period caused severe desiccation in most plants despite a large reduction in leaf-level and whole plant transpiration. Our results indicate that the epiphytes studied rely on FWU to maintain positive water balance in the dry season and that increases in dry periods in the TMCF may be detrimental to these common members of the epiphyte community.

  17. Comparative Population Genomics of African Montane Forest Mammals Support Population Persistence across a Climatic Gradient and Quaternary Climatic Cycles

    PubMed Central

    Demos, Terrence C.; Kerbis Peterhans, Julian C.; Joseph, Tyler A.; Robinson, John D.; Agwanda, Bernard; Hickerson, Michael J.

    2015-01-01

    The Eastern Afromontane biodiversity hotspot (EABH) has the highest concentration of biodiversity in tropical Africa, yet few studies have investigated recent historical diversification processes in EABH lineages. Herein, we analyze restriction-site associated DNA-sequences (RAD-Seq) to study recent historical processes in co-distributed mouse (Hylomyscus) and shrew (Sylvisorex) species complexes, with an aim to better determine how historical paleoenvironmental processes might have contributed to the EABH’s high diversity. We analyzed complete SNP matrices of > 50,000 RAD loci to delineate populations, reconstruct the history of isolation and admixture, and discover geographic patterns of genetic partitioning. These analyses demonstrate that persistently unsuitable habitat may have isolated multiple populations distributed across montane habitat islands in the Itombwe Massif and Albertine Rift to the west as well as Mt Elgon and Kenyan Highlands to the east. We detected low genetic diversity in Kenyan Highland populations of both genera, consistent with smaller historical population sizes in this region. We additionally tested predictions that Albertine Rift populations are older and more persistently isolated compared to the Kenyan Highlands. Phylogenetic analyses support greater historical isolation among Albertine Rift populations of both shrews and mice compared to the Kenyan Highlands and suggest that there are genetically isolated populations from both focal genera in the Itombwe Massif, Democratic Republic of Congo. The Albertine Rift ecoregion has the highest mammalian tropical forest species richness per unit area on earth. Our results clearly support accelerating efforts to conserve this diversity. PMID:26394036

  18. Physiological Responses of Two Epiphytic Bryophytes to Nitrogen, Phosphorus and Sulfur Addition in a Subtropical Montane Cloud Forest

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Xi; Liu, Wen-yao; Song, Liang; Li, Su; Wu, Yi; Shi, Xian-meng; Huang, Jun-biao; Wu, Chuan-sheng

    2016-01-01

    Atmospheric depositions pose significant threats to biodiversity and ecosystem function. However, the underlying physiological mechanisms are not well understood, and few studies have considered the combined effects and interactions of multiple pollutants. This in situ study explored the physiological responses of two epiphytic bryophytes to combined addition of nitrogen, phosphorus and sulfur. We investigated the electrical conductivity (EC), total chlorophyll concentration (Chl), nutrient stoichiometry and chlorophyll fluorescence signals in a subtropical montane cloud forest in south-west China. The results showed that enhanced fertilizer additions imposed detrimental effects on bryophytes, and the combined enrichment of simulated fertilization exerted limited synergistic effects in their natural environments. On the whole, EC, Chl, the effective quantum yield of photosystem II (ΦPSII) and photochemical quenching (qP) were the more reliable indicators of increased artificial fertilization. However, conclusions on nutrient stoichiometry should be drawn cautiously concerning the saturation uptake and nutrient interactions in bryophytes. Finally, we discuss the limitations of prevailing fertilization experiments and emphasize the importance of long-term data available for future investigations. PMID:27560190

  19. Element export from a small catchment in the tropical montane forest of Ecuador responds to climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leimer, Sophia; Willimann, Elias; Alaoui, Abdallah; Trachte, Katja; Wilcke, Wolfgang

    2015-04-01

    In a very remote tropical montane rain forest in the Ecuadorian Andes on the rim of the Amazon basin, increasing temperatures, longer dry spells, and an associated reduction in soil moisture were observed in the past 15 years. In the study ecosystem, element exports from a 9-ha large catchment with stream water are linked to the depth of water flow through soil because of vertical variations in soil chemical properties. The further increase in temperature and precipitation, as predicted by climate models, will have an impact on the water flow paths in soil and therefore alter element exports. Hence, we investigated how future element exports from this catchment in Ecuador will develop under the emission scenarios A1B and B1 for the decades 2050-2059 and 2090-2099 compared to current element exports. Discharge from the study catchment was measured in 1998-2013, partly in high resolution. Element concentrations in stream water (total organic carbon, NO3-N, NH4-N, dissolved organic nitrogen, PO4-P, total dissolved phosphorus, S, Cl, K, Ca, Mg, Na, Zn, Al, Mn) were measured in 1998-2012 in weekly resolution. Based on catchment properties, measured climate, and water flow data, discharge in 1998-2013 was simulated in daily resolution with the hydrological model WaSiM. From the hydrograph of surface flow, three flow classes (baseflow, intermediate, storm) were separated and linked with stream chemical properties. Element concentrations in stream water were grouped according to the flow classes and mean concentrations per flow class were calculated. Subsequently, the mean element concentration was multiplied with the mean of the annual discharge sums per flow class resulting in current element exports. For estimations of future element exports with stream water, discharge was simulated under the emission scenarios A1B and B1 for the decades 2050-2059 and 2090-2099 and separated into the three flow classes. Future element exports per scenario were calculated according to

  20. Critical zone properties control the fate of nitrogen during experimental rainfall in montane forests of the Colorado Front Range

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hinckley, Eve-Lyn S.; Ebel, Brian A.; Barnes, Rebecca T.; Murphy, Sheila F.; Anderson, Suzanne P.

    2017-01-01

    Several decades of research in alpine ecosystems have demonstrated links among the critical zone, hydrologic response, and the fate of elevated atmospheric nitrogen (N) deposition. Less research has occurred in mid-elevation forests, which may be important for retaining atmospheric N deposition. To explore the fate of N in the montane zone, we conducted plot-scale experimental rainfall events across a north–south transect within a catchment of the Boulder Creek Critical Zone Observatory. Rainfall events mimicked relatively common storms (20–50% annual exceedance probability) and were labeled with 15N-nitrate (NO3−">NO−3NO3−) and lithium bromide tracers. For 4 weeks, we measured soil–water and leachate concentrations of Br−, 15NO3−,">15NO−3,15NO3−, and NO3−">NO−3NO3− daily, followed by recoveries of 15N species in bulk soils and microbial biomass. Tracers moved immediately into the subsurface of north-facing slope plots, exhibiting breakthrough at 10 and 30 cm over 22 days. Conversely, little transport of Br− or 15NO3−">15NO−315NO3− occurred in south-facing slope plots; tracers remained in soil or were lost via pathways not measured. Hillslope position was a significant determinant of soil 15N-NO3−">NO−3NO3− recoveries, while soil depth and time were significant determinants of 15N recovery in microbial biomass. Overall, 15N recovery in microbial biomass and leachate was greater in upper north-facing slope plots than lower north-facing (toeslope) and both south-facing slope plots in August; by October, 15N recovery in microbial N biomass within south-facing slope plots had increased substantially. Our results point to the importance of soil properties in controlling the fate of N in mid-elevation forests during the summer season.

  1. Transport and Transformation of Dissolved Organic Matter in Soil Interstitial Water Across Forested, Montane Hillslopes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burns, M. A.; McKnight, D. M.; Gabor, R. S.; Brooks, P. D.; Barnard, H. R.

    2013-12-01

    Dissolved organic matter (DOM) is a ubiquitous mixture of compounds formed from the degradation of both terrestrial and microbial material. The abundance and composition of the DOM present in stream water is important to stream processes such as UV light attenuation, nutrient supply and metal sorption. However, an excess of DOM can cause reactions with chlorination compounds at drinking water treatment plants, creating potentially harmful disinfection byproducts. Currently, little is known regarding the influence of soil interstitial water on stream DOM composition. In this study, we explore the role of interstitial water on DOM transport and transformation from the hillslope to the stream in a montane catchment within the Boulder Creek Critical Zone Observatory in Colorado. We installed a suite of tension lysimeters located within the rooting zone across representative north- and south-facing slopes. Interstitial water and stream samples were collected daily for approximately seven weeks during the 2013 spring snow melt period and analyzed for DOM composition using fluorescence spectroscopy. To date, we have used fluorescence index (FI) to evaluate differences between microbial and terrestrial DOM inputs and humification index (HIX) to assess degree of humification undergone by the DOM. Preliminary results indicate that FI was significantly correlated with hillslope aspect (p<.01), with higher FI on north-facing slopes, suggesting more microbial precursor material. Stream samples reveal greater humification throughout the snowmelt period (p<.01). This increase could suggest a transition from deeper groundwater sources to shallow soil interstitial water inputs into the stream during snowmelt. These preliminary results suggest that changes in DOM composition through the catchment during snowmelt can be linked to hydrologic transport. Further site specific model development will reveal explicit changes in the DOM chemistry and will increase our understanding of

  2. Coupling channel hydro-morphodynamics and fish spawning habitat in a forested montane stream

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cienciala, P.; Hassan, M. A.

    2011-12-01

    In this paper we couple a hydrodynamic model with field data to investigate channel dynamics and spawning habitat potential for small-bodied salmonids in coarse-bed streams in British Columbia. We studied four reaches of East Creek, a small montane stream near Vancouver, BC, which display rapid (plane bed) and riffle-pool morphologies and provide habitat for a population of resident coastal cutthroat trout. Repeated channel surveys were conducted to obtain detailed information on channel topography and dynamics; net change in bed elevation between successive surveys was utilized as an index of scour and fill. Extensive bed surface sampling and low altitude vertical imagery were used in order to investigate bed surface texture and structures and to identify suitable spawning substrate patches. A 2-D hydrodynamic model, FaSTMECH (within MultiDimensional Surface Water Modeling System interface), was calibrated using field data and applied to simulate the spatial pattern of bed shear stress during a bankfull flow event. During small-to-intermediate floods significant bed scour, deeper than the estimated egg burial depth, occurred on a small proportion of bed area, in well-defined zones associated with obstacles such as large woody debris. Usually, distinct depositional zones developed just downstream of the scour locations. The spatial distribution of forcing elements and modeled bed shear stress explained well the observed pattern of scour and fill. Suitable spawning gravel was very limited in the study sites, particularly in two upstream reaches, primarily due to the coarse nature of the bed. In summary, scour disturbance risk appears to be relatively low in coarse-bed channels, except during extreme flow events, and shortage of suitable spawning substrate may be more important for small-bodied salmonids. This study demonstrates that coupling of hydro-morphodynamic and ecological data can provide a useful tool in fish habitat assessment and restoration.

  3. Response of dissolved carbon and nitrogen concentrations to moderate nutrient additions in a tropical montane forest of south Ecuador

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Velescu, Andre; Valarezo, Carlos; Wilcke, Wolfgang

    2016-05-01

    In the past two decades, the tropical montane rain forests in south Ecuador experienced increasing deposition of reactive nitrogen mainly originating from Amazonian forest fires, while Saharan dust inputs episodically increased deposition of base metals. Increasing air temperature and unevenly distributed rainfall have allowed for longer dry spells in a perhumid ecosystem. This might have favored mineralization of dissolved organic matter (DOM) by microorganisms and increased nutrient release from the organic layer. Environmental change is expected to impact the functioning of this ecosystem belonging to the biodiversity hotspots of the Earth. In 2007, we established a nutrient manipulation experiment (NUMEX) to understand the response of the ecosystem to moderately increased nutrient inputs. Since 2008, we have continuously applied 50 kg ha-1 a-1 of nitrogen (N), 10 kg ha-1 a-1 of phosphorus (P), 50 kg + 10 kg ha-1 a-1 of N and P and 10 kg ha-1 a-1 of calcium (Ca) in a randomized block design at 2000 m a.s.l. in a natural forest on the Amazonia-exposed slopes of the south Ecuadorian Andes. Nitrogen concentrations in throughfall increased following N+P additions, while separate N amendments only increased nitrate concentrations. Total organic carbon (TOC) and dissolved organic nitrogen (DON) concentrations showed high seasonal variations in litter leachate and decreased significantly in the P and N+P treatments, but not in the N treatment. Thus, P availability plays a key role in the mineralization of DOM. TOC/DON ratios were narrower in throughfall than in litter leachate but their temporal course did not respond to nutrient amendments. Our results revealed an initially fast, positive response of the C and N cycling to nutrient additions which declined with time. TOC and DON cycling only change if N and P supply are improved concurrently, while NO3-N leaching increases only if N is separately added. This indicates co-limitation of the microorganisms by N and P

  4. Hydro-meteorological functioning of the Eastern Andean Tropical Montane Cloud Forests: Insight from a paired catchment study in the Orinoco river basin highlands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ramirez, Beatriz; Teuling, Adriaan J.; Ganzeveld, Laurens; Leemans, Rik

    2016-04-01

    Tropical forests regulate large scale precipitation patterns and catchment-scale streamflow, while tropical mountains influence runoff by orographic effects and snowmelt. Along tropical elevation gradients, these climate/ecosystem/hydrological interactions are specific and heterogeneous. These interactions are poorly understood and represented in hydro-meteorological monitoring networks and regional or global earth system models. A typical case are the South American Tropical Montane Cloud Forests (TMCF), whose water balance is strongly driven by fog persistence. This also depends on local and up wind temperature and moisture, and changes in this balance alter the impacts of changes in land use and climate on hydrology. These TMCFs were until 2010 only investigated up to 350km from the coast. Continental TMCFs are largely ignored. This gap is covered by our study area, which is part of the Orinoco river basin highlands and located on the northern Eastern Andes at an altitudinal range of 1550 to 2300m a.s.l. The upwind part of our study area is dominated by lowland savannahs that are flooded seasonally. Because meteorological stations are absent in our study area, we first describe the spatial and seasonal meteorological variability and analyse the corresponding catchment hydrology. Our hydro-meteorological data set is collected at three gauged neighbouring catchments with contrasting TMCF/grassland cover from June 2013 to May 2014 and includes hourly solar radiation, temperature, relative humidity, wind speed, precipitation, soil moisture and runoff measurements. We compare our results with recent TCMF studies in the eastern Andean highlands in the Amazon basin. The studied elevational range always shows wetter conditions at higher elevations. This indicates a positive relation between elevation and fog or rainfall persistence. Lower elevations are more seasonally variable. Soil moisture data indicate that TMCFs do not use persistently more water than grasslands

  5. Alteration of forest structure modifies the distribution of scale insect, Stigmacoccus garmilleri, in Mexican tropical montane cloud forests.

    PubMed

    Gamper, Heather A; Koptur, Suzanne; García-Franco, Jose; Stapper, Andres Plata

    2011-01-01

    Stigmacoccus garmilleri Foldi (Hemiptera: Margarodidae) is an ecologically important honeydew-producing scale insect associated with oak trees (Quercus spp.) in highland forests of Veracruz, Mexico. The honeydew exudates of S. garmilleri serve as a significant nutrient source to many species of birds, insects, and sooty molds. Oak trees found in the forest interior, forest edge, and those scattered in pasture areas support scale insect colonies, though the pattern of insect infestations on trees within these varying landscape types has not been elucidated. This study aims to describe the distribution of scale insect infestation and any distinctions in honeydew production based on tree location. Scale insect density, honeydew volume, and sugar concentration were surveyed throughout a continuous landscape that included both patches of forest and scattered pasture trees. In addition, the anal filament through which the honeydew drop is secreted was also measured and was experimentally removed to test and measure regrowth. Scale insect densities on tree trunks were greatest on pasture trees, while intermediate densities were found on trees at the forest edge, and low densities on interior forest trees, suggesting that trees in disturbed areas are more susceptible to scale insect infestation. Trees with small diameters at breast height had significantly higher insect densities than trees with medium to large diameters. Trunk aspect (North, South, East, and West) was not a significant determinant of scale insect density. In forested areas higher densities of scale insects were found at three meters height in comparison to lower heights. Sugar concentrations and drop volumes of honeydew in forest and pasture areas were not significantly different. However, scale-insect anal tubes/filaments were significantly longer in pasture than they were in forests. Sugar concentrations of honeydew appeared to be positively correlated with temperature and negatively correlated with

  6. Fuzzy logic merger of spectral and ecological information for improved montane forest mapping.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    White, Joseph D.; Running, Steven W.; Ryan, Kevin C.; Key, Carl H.

    2002-01-01

    Environmental data are often utilized to guide interpretation of spectral information based on context, however, these are also important in deriving vegetation maps themselves, especially where ecological information can be mapped spatially. A vegetation classification procedure is presented which combines a classification of spectral data from Landsat‐5 Thematic Mapper (TM) and environmental data based on topography and fire history. These data were combined utilizing fuzzy logic where assignment of each pixel to a single vegetation category was derived comparing the partial membership of each vegetation category within spectral and environmental classes. Partial membership was assigned from canopy cover for forest types measured from field sampling. Initial classification of spectral and ecological data produced map accuracies of less than 50% due to overlap between spectrally similar vegetation and limited spatial precision for predicting local vegetation types solely from the ecological information. Combination of environmental data through fuzzy logic increased overall mapping accuracy (70%) in coniferous forest communities of northwestern Montana, USA.

  7. Life in the Treetops: Drought Tolerance and Water Balance of Canopy Epiphytes in a Tropical Montane Cloud Forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gotsch, S. G.; Nadkarni, N.; Darby, A.; Dix, M.; Glunk, A.; Davidson, K.; Dawson, T. E.

    2014-12-01

    Tropical montane cloud forests (TMCFs) inhabit regions rich in biodiversity that play an important role in the local and regional water cycle. Canopy plants such as epiphytes and hemiepiphytes are an important component of the biodiversity in the TMCF and therefore play a significant role in the carbon, nutrient and water cycles. With only partial or no access to resources on the ground, canopy plants may be vulnerable to changes in climate that increase canopy temperatures and decrease atmospheric humidity or precipitation inputs. Despite their importance in the TMCF, there is little information regarding drought tolerance and water balance in this community. In this study we quantified variation in functional traits and water relations in 12 species of epiphytes and hemiepiphytes in a Costa Rican TMCF. We also generated pressure-volume curves and xylem vulnerability curves that we used as indicators of drought tolerance. Lastly, we determined the capacity for foliar water uptake in the laboratory and measured whole-plant transpiration in the field. We found that all species had a high turgor loss point (ψTLP), high vulnerability to cavitation (P50), and low bulk elastic modulus (ɛmax, i.e. high cell wall elasticity). These results indicate that capacitance may be high in canopy plants and that stored water may help to maintain high leaf water potentials during dry periods. We also found that all species had the capacity for foliar uptake and that this process contributed substantially to their water status and water balance. On average, foliar uptake contributed to the reabsorption of 70% of the water transpired over a 34-day period at the beginning of the dry season. Our results indicate that canopy plants can mitigate water loss substantially, but they may be vulnerable to changes in the overall precipitation patterns or increases in cloud base heights.

  8. Effect of Canopy Position on Germination and Seedling Survival of Epiphytic Bromeliads in a Mexican Humid Montane Forest

    PubMed Central

    WINKLER, MANUELA; HÜLBER, KARL; HIETZ, PETER

    2005-01-01

    • Background and Aims Seeds of epiphytes must land on branches with suitable substrates and microclimates to germinate and for the resulting seedlings to survive. It is important to understand the fate of seeds and seedlings in order to model populations, but this is often neglected when only established plants are included in analyses. • Methods The seeds of five bromeliad species were exposed to different canopy positions in a Mexican montane forest, and germination and early seedling survival were recorded. Additionally, the survival of naturally dispersed seedlings was monitored in a census over 2·5 years. Survival analysis, a procedure rarely used in plant ecology, was used to study the influence of branch characteristics and light on germination and seedling survival in natural and experimental populations. • Key Results Experimental germination percentages ranged from 7·2 % in Tillandsia deppeana to 33·7 % in T. juncea, but the seeds of T. multicaulis largely failed to germinate. Twenty months after exposure between 3·5 and 9·4 % of the seedlings were still alive. There was no evidence that canopy position affected the probability of germination, but time to germination was shorter in less exposed canopy positions indicating that higher humidity accelerates germination. More experimental seedlings survived when canopy openness was high, whereas survival in census-seedlings was influenced by moss cover. While mortality decreased steadily with age in juveniles of the atmospheric Tillandsia, in the more mesomorphic Catopsis sessiliflora mortality increased dramatically in the dry season. • Conclusions Seedling mortality, rather than the failure to germinate, accounts for the differential distribution of epiphytes within the canopy studied. With few safe sites to germinate and high seedling mortality, changes of local climate may affect epiphyte populations primarily through their seedling stage. PMID:15767270

  9. [Spatial analysis of LAIe of montane evergreen broad-leaved forest in southwest Sichuan, Northwest China, based on image texture].

    PubMed

    Zhao, An-Jiu; Yang, Chang-Qing; Liao, Cheng-Yun

    2014-11-01

    Optical remote sensing is still one of the most attractive choices for obtaining leaf area index (LAI) information, but currently may be derived from remotely sensed data with limited accuracy. Effective leaf area index (LAIe) of montane evergreen broad-leaved forest in southwest Sichuan was inventoried and assessed in 83 sample field plots of 20 m x 20 m using different types of image processing techniques, including simple spectral band, simple spectral band ratios and principal component. Texture information was extracted by gray level co-occurrence matrices (GLCM) from different types of processing image. The results showed that there were correlations of different degrees between LAIe and texture parameters, and highly significant correlations were observed between LAIe with the homogeneity of the B1 band, B1/B4 band ratio or principal component PC1. Using texture information of remotely sensed data as auxiliary variables, we developed geostatistics models. Compared with the model based on NDVI auxiliary variable, the accuracy of LAIe were improved, presenting an increase by 5.3% with the homogeneity of the B1 band, 11.0% with the homogeneity B1/B4 band ratio, and 14.5% with the homogeneity principal component PC1, and the statistical errors were also reduced to some extent. The optimal LAIe model of spatial geostatistics was obtained when taking NDVI and homogeneity principal component PC1 as auxiliary variables (R2 = 0.840, RMSE = 0.212). Our results provided a new way to estimate regional spatial distribution of LAI using other auxiliary variables besides the vegetation index.

  10. Impact of Long-Range Transported African Dust Events on Cloud Chemistry at a Caribbean Tropical Montane Cloud Forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Valle-Diaz, C. J.; Torres-Delgado, E.; Lee, T.; Collett, J. L.; Cuadra-Rodriguez, L. A.; Prather, K. A.; Mayol-Bracero, O. L.

    2013-12-01

    We studied the impact of long-range transported African Dust (LRTAD) on cloud composition and properties at the Caribbean tropical montane cloud forest (TMCF) of Pico del Este (PE), as part of the Puerto Rico African Dust and Clouds Study (PRADACS). Here we present results from measurements performed in July 2011. The use of HYSPLIT backward trajectories, satellite images from the Saharan Air Layer (SAL), and dust forecasting models allowed air masses arriving sampled to be classified as marine, dust, or anthropogenic. Measurements of pH and conductivity obtained onsite revealed higher values in the presence of dust and higher for larger cloud droplets (size cut of 17 μm at 50% efficiency), suggesting a higher content of dust in this fraction. The African dust influence was seen by the presence of nss-Ca and Fe in cloud water and by comparing ratios of Ca, K, and Mg to Na observed in our samples with sea water ratios reported in literature. Interstitial single-particle size and chemistry measured using an aerosol time-of-flight mass spectrometer (ATOFMS) revealed mostly sea-salt particles (Na, Cl, Ca) and dust particles (Fe, Ti, Mg, nss-Ca). The detected particles obtained with the ATOFMS confirmed the presence of dust. Anthropogenic influence detected as the presence of elemental carbon, a tracer for combustion processes, was found to be fairly small according to ATOFMS measurements. An increase in the concentrations of total organic carbon, total nitrogen, and dissolved organic carbon was observed during LRTAD events. Additional results on the chemistry of peroxides, formaldehyde and S(IV) occurring in clouds under the influence of different air masses will be presented at the meeting. Results so far show differences in the physicochemical properties of aerosols and clouds during dust and non-dust events, and show that during LRTAD events, aerosol-cloud-precipitation interactions are altered at PE.

  11. Water relations and gas exchange of fan bryophytes and their adaptations to microhabitats in an Asian subtropical montane cloud forest.

    PubMed

    Song, Liang; Zhang, Yong-Jiang; Chen, Xi; Li, Su; Lu, Hua-Zheng; Wu, Chuan-Sheng; Tan, Zheng-Hong; Liu, Wen-Yao; Shi, Xian-Meng

    2015-07-01

    Fan life forms are bryophytes with shoots rising from vertical substratum that branch repeatedly in the horizontal plane to form flattened photosynthetic surfaces, which are well suited for intercepting water from moving air. However, detailed water relations, gas exchange characteristics of fan bryophytes and their adaptations to particular microhabitats remain poorly understood. In this study, we measured and analyzed microclimatic data, as well as water release curves, pressure-volume relationships and photosynthetic water and light response curves for three common fan bryophytes in an Asian subtropical montane cloud forest (SMCF). Results demonstrate high relative humidity but low light levels and temperatures in the understory, and a strong effect of fog on water availability for bryophytes in the SMCF. The facts that fan bryophytes in dry air lose most of their free water within 1 h, and a strong dependence of net photosynthesis rates on water content, imply that the transition from a hydrated, photosynthetically active state to a dry, inactive state is rapid. In addition, fan bryophytes developed relatively high cell wall elasticity and the osmoregulatory capacity to tolerate desiccation. These fan bryophytes had low light saturation and compensation point of photosynthesis, indicating shade tolerance. It is likely that fan bryophytes can flourish on tree trunks in the SMCF because of substantial annual precipitation, average relative humidity, and frequent and persistent fog, which can provide continual water sources for them to intercept. Nevertheless, the low water retention capacity and strong dependence of net photosynthesis on water content of fan bryophytes indicate a high risk of unbalanced carbon budget if the frequency and severity of drought increase in the future as predicted.

  12. Nutrient limitation restricts growth and reproductive output in a tropical montane cloud forest bromeliad: findings from a long-term forest fertilization experiment.

    PubMed

    Lasso, Eloisa; Ackerman, James D

    2013-01-01

    From studies in seasonal lowland tropical forests, bromeliad epiphytes appear to be limited mainly by water, and to a lesser extent by nutrient supply, especially phosphorous. Less is understood about the mineral nutrition of tropical montane cloud forest (TMCF) epiphytes, even though their highest diversity is in this habitat. Nutrient limitation is known to be a key factor restricting forest productivity in TMCF, and if epiphytes are nutritionally linked to their host trees, as has been suggested, we would expect that they are also nutrient limited. We studied the effect of a higher nutrient input on reproduction and growth of the tank bromeliad Werauhia sintenisii in experimental plots located in a TMCF in Puerto Rico, where all macro- and micronutrients had been added quarterly starting in 1989 and continuing throughout the duration of this study. We found that bromeliads growing in fertilized plots were receiving litterfall with higher concentrations of N, P, and Zn and had higher concentrations of P, Zn, Fe, Al, and Na in their vegetative body. The N:P ratios found (fertilized = 27.5 and non-fertilized = 33.8) suggest that W. sintenisii may also be phosphorous limited as are lowland epiphytes. Fertilized plants had slightly longer inflorescences, and more flowers per inflorescence, than non-fertilized plants, but their flowers produced nectar in similar concentrations and quantities. Fertilized plants produced more seeds per fruit and per plant. Frequency of flowering in two consecutive years was higher for fertilized plants than for controls, suggesting that fertilized plants overcome the cost of reproduction more readily than non-fertilized plants. These results provide evidence that TMCF epiphytic bromeliads are nutrient limited like their lowland counterparts.

  13. Size-Specific Tree Mortality Varies with Neighbourhood Crowding and Disturbance in a Montane Nothofagus Forest

    PubMed Central

    Hurst, Jennifer M.; Allen, Robert B.; Coomes, David A.; Duncan, Richard P.

    2011-01-01

    Tree mortality is a fundamental process governing forest dynamics, but understanding tree mortality patterns is challenging because large, long-term datasets are required. Describing size-specific mortality patterns can be especially difficult, due to few trees in larger size classes. We used permanent plot data from Nothofagus solandri var. cliffortioides (mountain beech) forest on the eastern slopes of the Southern Alps, New Zealand, where the fates of trees on 250 plots of 0.04 ha were followed, to examine: (1) patterns of size-specific mortality over three consecutive periods spanning 30 years, each characterised by different disturbance, and (2) the strength and direction of neighbourhood crowding effects on size-specific mortality rates. We found that the size-specific mortality function was U-shaped over the 30-year period as well as within two shorter periods characterised by small-scale pinhole beetle and windthrow disturbance. During a third period, characterised by earthquake disturbance, tree mortality was less size dependent. Small trees (<20 cm in diameter) were more likely to die, in all three periods, if surrounded by a high basal area of larger neighbours, suggesting that size-asymmetric competition for light was a major cause of mortality. In contrast, large trees (≥20 cm in diameter) were more likely to die in the first period if they had few neighbours, indicating that positive crowding effects were sometimes important for survival of large trees. Overall our results suggest that temporal variability in size-specific mortality patterns, and positive interactions between large trees, may sometimes need to be incorporated into models of forest dynamics. PMID:22046327

  14. Water Quality of a Tropical Montane Cloud Forest Watershed, Monteverde, Costa Rica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rhodes, A. L.; Guswa, A. J.; Dallas, S.; Kim, E. M.; Katchpole, S.; Newell, S. E.; Pufall, A.

    2004-05-01

    The Rio Guacimal originates in the Monteverde Cloud Forest Preserve, located on the leeward side of the continental divide through Costa Rica. Agriculture and ecotourism has spurred growth adjacent to the preserve. Continued development coupled with changes in precipitation patterns could stress the quality and quantity of water. This study characterizes water chemistry and surface water hydrology of a 21 km2 headwater catchment to evaluate effects of current and projected land use on water quality. Stream samples have been collected from up to 11 sites since March 2000. Two sites located on tributaries in remote, forested areas serve as references for sites located downstream of agricultural and residential areas. Waters were analyzed for specific conductance, pH, DO, acid neutralizing capacity (ANC), Ca, Mg, Na, NH4, SO4, NO3, Cl, PO4 and dissolved silica. In the upland, forested streams, chemical loading is dominated by mineral weathering and cation exchange reactions. Silica, ANC and base cation concentrations all exceed sum of acid anions. During the dry season, concentrations of all dissolved constituents increase synchronously, but at different magnitudes (SO4 and Cl by 15 μ eq/L; silica by 250 μ mol/L; sum of base cations and ANC by 120 μ eq/L), suggesting that increased baseflow has a greater effect on temporal changes of chemical loads in high-elevation, forested streams than does evapotranspiration. Chemical loads of streams receiving runoff from populated areas are 2-5x more concentrated than the upland sites. Highest concentrations occur in Queb. Sucia (QS), which receives grey-water runoff from residential areas. Acidic runoff decreases the ANC of QS by 90-200 μ eq/L; however high alkalinity (ANC=400-1000 μ eq/L) prevents acidification. Acid anions in streams receiving grey-water runoff throughout the year are most concentrated during the dry season when dilution from precipitation is least. Conversely, a site that receives nonpoint source

  15. Breeding biology of passerines in a subtropical montane forest in northwestern Argentina

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Auer, S.K.; Bassar, R.D.; Fontaine, J.J.; Martin, T.E.

    2007-01-01

    The breeding ecology of south temperate bird species is less widely known than that of north temperate species, yet because they comprise a large portion of the world's avian diversity, knowledge of their breeding ecology can contribute to a more comprehensive understanding of the geographic diversity of avian reproductive traits and life history strategies. We provide the first detailed examination of the reproductive strategies of 18 forest passerines of subtropical, northwestern Argentina. Mean clutch sizes were smaller and egg mass was greater than for north temperate birds, but differed among species and nest types, with cavity-nesters having larger clutches than species with open-cup and enclosed nests. Across all species, the average breeding season duration was 50 days; thus, the common perception that southern species have smaller clutch sizes because of longer breeding seasons is not supported in this community. Daily nest predation rates were influenced by nest type, cavity nests suffering the least from predation, as found in north temperate systems. Only females incubated eggs in all but one species, whereas both parents fed and cared for nestlings in all species. Mean nest attentiveness was low compared to north temperate passerines. Mean hourly nestling feeding rates differed among species and were negatively related to nest predation risk. In short, coexisting species in this subtropical forest varied in their life history strategies, in part correlated with variation in nest predation risk, but also differing from north temperate species. ?? The Cooper Ornithological Society 2007.

  16. Effects of past logging and grazing on understory plant communities in a montane Colorado forest

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fornwalt, P.J.; Kaufmann, M.R.; Huckaby, L.S.; Stohlgren, T.J.

    2009-01-01

    Throughout Pinus ponderosa-Pseudotsuga menziesii forests of the southern Colorado Front Range, USA, intense logging and domestic grazing began at the time of Euro-American settlement in the late 1800s and continued until the early 1900s. We investigated the long-term impacts of these settlement-era activities on understory plant communities by comparing understory composition at a historically logged and grazed site to that of an environmentally similar site which was protected from past use. We found that species richness and cover within functional groups rarely differed between sites in either upland or riparian areas. Multivariate analyses revealed little difference in species composition between sites on uplands, though compositional differences were apparent in riparian zones. Our findings suggest that settlement-era logging and grazing have had only minor long-term impacts on understories of upland Front Range P. ponderosa-P. menziesii forests, though they have had a greater long-term influence on riparian understories, where these activities were likely the most intense. ?? 2008 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.

  17. Organo-mineral interactions promote greater soil organic carbon stability under aspen in semi-arid montane forests in Utah

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Van Miegroet, H.; Roman Dobarco, M.

    2014-12-01

    Forest species influence soil organic carbon (SOC) storage through litter input, which in interaction with soil microclimate, texture and mineralogy, lead to different SOC stabilization and storage patterns. We sampled mineral soil (0-15 cm) across the ecotone between aspen (Populus tremuloides) and mixed conifers stands (Abies lasiocarpa and Pseudotsuga menziesii) in semi-arid montane forests from Utah, to investigate the influence of vegetation vs. site characteristics on SOC stabilization, storage and chemistry. SOC was divided into light fraction (LF), mineral-associated SOC in the silt and clay fraction (MoM), and a dense subfraction > 53 μm (SMoM) using wet sieving and electrostatic attraction. SOC decomposability and solubility was derived from long term laboratory incubations and hot water extractions (HWE). Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) was used to study differences in chemical functional groups in LF and MoM. Vegetation cover did not affect SOC storage (47.0 ± 16.5 Mg C ha-1), SOC decomposability (cumulative CO2-C release of 93.2 ± 65.4 g C g-1 C), or SOC solubility (9.8 ± 7.2 mg C g-1 C), but MoM content increased with presence of aspen [pure aspen (31.2 ± 15.1 Mg C ha-1) > mixed (25.7 ± 8.8 Mg C ha-1) > conifer (22.8 ± 9.0 Mg C ha-1)]. Organo-mineral complexes reduced biological availability of SOC, indicated by the negative correlation between silt+clay (%) and decomposable SOC per gram of C (r = -0.48, p = 0.001) or soluble SOC (r = -0.59, p < 0.0001). FTIR spectral analysis indicated that higher MoM content under aspen was not due to higher concentration of recalcitrant compounds (e.g., aliphatic and aromatic C), but rather to stabilization of simple molecules (e.g., polysaccharides) of plant or microbial origin. FTIR spectra clustered by sites with similar parent material rather than by vegetation cover. This suggests that initial differences in litter chemistry between aspen and conifers converged into similar MoM chemistry

  18. Soil N2O fluxes along an elevation gradient of tropical montane forests under experimental nitrogen and phosphorus addition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Müller, Anke; Matson, Amanda; Corre, Marife; Veldkamp, Edzo

    2015-10-01

    Nutrient deposition to tropical forests is increasing, which could affect soil fluxes of nitrous oxide (N2O), a powerful greenhouse gas. We assessed the effects of 35-56 months of moderate nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) additions on soil N2O fluxes and net soil N-cycling rates, and quantified the relative contributions of nitrification and denitrification to N2O fluxes. In 2008, a nutrient manipulation experiment was established along an elevation gradient (1000, 2000 and 3000 m) of montane forests in southern Ecuador. Treatments included control, N, P and N+P addition (with additions of 50 kg N ha-1 yr-1 and 10 kg P ha-1 yr-1). Nitrous oxide fluxes were measured using static, vented chambers and N cycling was determined using the buried bag method. Measurements showed that denitrification was the main N2O source at all elevations, but that annual N2O emissions from control plots were low, and decreased along the elevation gradient (0.57 ± 0.26 to 0.05 ± 0.04 kg N2O-N ha-1 yr-1). We attributed the low fluxes to our sites’ conservative soil N cycling as well as gaseous N losses possibly being dominated by N2. Contrary to the first 21 months of the experiment, N addition did not affect N2O fluxes during the 35-56 month period, possibly due to low soil moisture contents during this time. With P addition, N2O fluxes and mineral N concentrations decreased during Months 35-56, presumably because plant P limitations were alleviated, increasing plant N uptake. Nitrogen plus phosphorus addition showed similar trends to N addition, but less pronounced given the counteracting effects of P addition. The combined results from this study (Months 1-21 and 35-56) showed that effects of N and P addition on soil N2O fluxes were not linear with time of exposure, highlighting the importance of long-term studies.

  19. Air pollution, forest condition and forest decline in Southern Europe: an overview.

    PubMed

    Bussotti, F; Ferretti, M

    1998-01-01

    Over the last decades much of the work on the impact of air pollution on forests in Europe has concentrated on central and northern countries. The southern part of Europe has received far less attention, although air pollutants-especially the photochemical ones-can reach concentrations likely to have adverse effects on forest vegetation. Although international forest condition surveys present serious problems where data consistency is concerned, they reveal considerable year-by-year species-specific fluctuations rather than a large-scale forest decline. Cases of obvious decline related to environmental factors are well circumscribed: (1) the deterioration of some coastal forests due to the action of polluted seaspray; (2) the deterioration of reforestation projects, especially conifers, mainly due to the poor ecological compatibility between species and site; and (3) the decline of deciduous oaks in southern Italy and of evergreen oaks in the Iberian peninsula apparently due to the interaction of climate stresses and pests and diseases. However, besides obvious deterioration, changes in environmental factors can provoke situations of more subtle stress. The most sensitive stands are Mediterranean conifer forests and mesophile forests of the Mediterranean-montane plane growing at the edges of the natural ecological distribution. Evergreen sclerophyllous forests appear less sensitive to variations in climatic parameters, since they can adapt quite well to both drought and the action of UV-B rays. Several experiments were carried out to test the sensitivity of Mediterranean forest species to air pollutants. Most of those experiments used seedlings of different species treated with pollutant concentrations too high to be realistic, so it is difficult to derive adequate information on the response of adult trees in field conditions. Ozone has been proved to cause foliar injury in a variety of native forest species in different Southern European countries, while the

  20. Viable seed banks under grazing and exclosure conditions in montane mesic grasslands of Argentina

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Loydi, Alejandro; Zalba, Sergio M.; Distel, Roberto A.

    2012-08-01

    Grazing by large herbivores affects the composition of established vegetation and seed banks. Montane Pampas grasslands are highly productive and have evolved with the influence of grazing by native herbivores. Thus we proposed, firstly that grazing by feral horses would increase seed bank diversity, without changing seed density in grazed areas and secondly that there is a greater similarity between the seed bank and aboveground vegetation in exclosure areas. The study area is located in sub-humid montane grassland in mid-eastern Argentina. Sampling took place at the beginning and end of summer in 2008 and 2009, in three one-year-old exclosures and grazed areas. Soil and litter samples were collected and established vegetation cover was visually recorded in every area. Each sample was elutriated and sieved. Seed composition was recorded using a dissecting microscope. Seed density and species richness of the samples was analyzed using ANOVA and species composition was analyzed by multivariate analysis. Grazing reduces the seed density and richness of grasses, but forb species are not affected. The seed density of grasses increases in soil samples at the end of summer, while the density of forb species does not change. Similarity between the established vegetation and the seed bank was low. Grazing affects seed bank composition which could limit restoration time after the removal of herbivores. However, grass seed availability increases considerably during a short period after exclosure establishment, showing high potential for recovery in sub-humid grasslands.

  1. Avifaunal responses to fire in southwestern montane forests along a burn severity gradient

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kotliar, N.B.; Kennedy, P.L.; Ferree, K.

    2007-01-01

    The effects of burn severity on avian communities are poorly understood, yet this information is crucial to fire management programs. To quantify avian response patterns along a burn severity gradient, we sampled 49 random plots (2001-2002) at the 17 351-ha Cerro Grande Fire (2000) in New Mexico, USA. Additionally, pre-fire avian surveys (1986-1988, 1990) created a unique opportunity to quantify avifaunal changes in 13 pre-fire transects (resampled in 2002) and to compare two designs for analyzing the effects of unplanned disturbances: after-only analysis and before-after comparisons. Distance analysis was used to calculate densities. We analyzed after-only densities for 21 species using gradient analysis, which detected a broad range of responses to increasing burn severity: (I) large significant declines, (II) weak, but significant declines, (III) no significant density changes, (IV) peak densities in low- or moderate-severity patches, (V) weak, but significant increases, and (VI) large significant increases. Overall, 71% of the species included in the after-only gradient analysis exhibited either positive or neutral density responses to fire effects across all or portions of the severity gradient (responses III-VI). We used pre/post pairs analysis to quantify density changes for 15 species using before-after comparisons; spatiotemporal variation in densities was large and confounded fire effects for most species. Only four species demonstrated significant effects of burn severity, and their densities were all higher in burned compared to unburned forests. Pre- and post-fire community similarity was high except in high-severity areas. Species richness was similar pre- and post-fire across all burn severities. Thus, ecosystem restoration programs based on the assumption that recent severe fires in Southwestern ponderosa pine forests have overriding negative ecological effects are not supported by our study of post-fire avian communities. This study illustrates the

  2. Seed germination of montane forest species in response to ash, smoke and heat shock in Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zuloaga-Aguilar, Susana; Briones, Oscar; Orozco-Segovia, Alma

    2011-05-01

    In many fire-prone ecosystems, seed germination is triggered by heat shock, smoke, ash and charred wood. However, few studies concerning the effect of these fire products on the germination of tropical and subtropical species exist. We assessed the effect of fire products and their interactions on seed germination in 12 species that frequently grow in burned areas of pine-oak and mixed forest in a mountainous subtropical area. Each species was exposed to a predetermined treatment of heat shock, which was optimised in accordance with a previous study. For smoke treatments, seeds were immersed in smoke water, whereas for ash treatments, 1.5 g of ash was added to the incubation medium. Germination increased in 92% of the species in response to the products of fire. Both the smoke water and the ash treatments promoted germination in four species that had permeable seed covers and physiological dormancy. Six species with physical dormancy required both heat shock and smoke water or ash to break dormancy. Our results indicate that seed germination response to fire products depends on the species and/or dormancy type. The germination response to the fire products varied between species; therefore, fire products may influence the species composition in post-fire regeneration.

  3. Contrasting the patterns of aspen forest and sagebrush shrubland gross ecosystem exchange in montane Idaho, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fellows, A.; Flerchinger, G. N.; Seyfried, M. S.

    2015-12-01

    We investigated the environmental controls on Gross Ecosystem Exchange (GEE) at an aspen forest and a sagebrush shrubland in southwest Idaho. The two sites were situated within a mosaic of vegetation that included temperate deciduous trees, shrublands, and evergreen conifer trees. The distribution of vegetation was presumably linked to water availability; aspen were located in wetter high-elevations sites, topographic drainages, or near snow drifts. Local temperatures have increased by ~2-3 °C over the past 50 years and less precipitation has arrived as snow. These ongoing changes in weather may impact snow water redistribution, plant-water availability, and plant-thermal stress, with associated impacts on vegetation health and production. We used eddy covariance to measure the exchange of water and carbon dioxide above the two sites and partitioned the net carbon flux to determine GEE. The sagebrush record was from 2003-2007 and the aspen record was from 2007-12. The region experienced a modest-to-severe drought in 2007, with ~73% of typical precipitation. We found that aspen were local "hotspots" for carbon exchange; peak rates of aspen GEE were ~ 60% greater than the peak rates of sagebrush GEE. Light, temperature, and water availability were dominant controls on the seasonality of GEE at both sites. Sagebrush and aspen were dormant during winter, limited by cold temperatures during winter and early spring, and water availability during mid-late summer. The onset of summer drought was typically later in the aspen than in the sagebrush. Drifting snow, lateral water redistribution, or increased rooting depths may have increased water availability in the aspen stand. Seasonal patterns of observed soil moisture and evaporation indicated aspen were rooted to >= 1 m. The sagebrush and aspen both responded strongly to the 2007 drought; peak GEE decreased by ~75%, peak GEE shifted to earlier parts of the year, and mid-summer GEE was decreased. We consider potential

  4. Rain chemistry and cloud composition and microphysics in a Caribbean tropical montane cloud forest under the influence of African dust

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Torres-Delgado, Elvis; Valle-Diaz, Carlos J.; Baumgardner, Darrel; McDowell, William H.; González, Grizelle; Mayol-Bracero, Olga L.

    2015-04-01

    It is known that huge amounts of mineral dust travels thousands of kilometers from the Sahara and Sahel regions in Africa over the Atlantic Ocean reaching the Caribbean, northern South America and southern North America; however, not much is understood about how the aging process that takes place during transport changes dust properties, and how the presence of this dust affects cloud's composition and microphysics. This African dust reaches the Caribbean region mostly in the summer time. In order to improve our understanding of the role of long-range transported African dust (LRTAD) in cloud formation processes in a tropical montane cloud forest (TMCF) in the Caribbean region we had field campaigns measuring dust physical and chemical properties in summer 2013, as part of the Puerto Rico African Dust and Cloud Study (PRADACS), and in summer 2014, as a part of the Luquillo Critical Zone Observatory (LCZO) and in collaboration with the Saharan Aerosol Long-Range Transport and Aerosol-Cloud-Interaction Experiment (SALTRACE). Measurements were performed at the TMCF of Pico del Este (PE, 1051 masl) and at the nature reserve of Cabezas de San Juan (CSJ, 60 masl). In both stations we monitored meteorological parameters (e.g., temperature, wind speed, wind direction). At CSJ, we measured light absorption and scattering at three wavelengths (467, 528 and 652 nm). At PE we collected cloud and rainwater and monitored cloud microphysical properties (e.g., liquid water content, droplet size distribution, droplet number concentration, effective diameter and median volume diameter). Data from aerosol models, satellites, and back-trajectories were used together with CSJ measurements to classify air masses and samples collected at PE in the presence or absence of dust. Soluble ions, insoluble trace metals, pH and conductivity were measured for cloud and rainwater. Preliminary results for summer 2013 showed that in the presence of LRTAD (1) the average conductivity of cloud water

  5. Monitoring tropical and montane forest dynamics and structure using remote sensing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Greenberg, Jonathan Asher

    Uncertainties in our understanding of the basic inputs and dynamics at work in the global carbon cycle severely restrict our ability to address why climate change is happening and how best to mitigate it. I focused on advances in regional and global climate change model inputs, addressing two major uncertainties: (1) what are the anthropogenic factors influencing deforestation and (2) what is the carbon load of an ecosystem? Analysis of anthropogenic factors leading to land use changes are presented in an evaluation of deforestation at the UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, Parque National Yasuni, located in the rainforest of eastern Ecuador, using multitemporal Landsat satellite imagery. Using survival analysis, I assessed current and future trends in deforestation rates and investigated the impact of spatial, cultural, and economic factors on deforestation. I found the annual rate of deforestation is currently only 0.11%, but is increasing with time, so that by 2063, 50% of the forest within 2 km of a major oil access road will be lost due to unhindered colonization and anthropogenic conversion. To improve accuracy in estimating landscape level carbon sequestration, I developed a new approach to generating regional aboveground biomass estimates for tree species of the Lake Tahoe Basin, California using hyperspatial (<1m2) remote sensing imagery. I demonstrate how, with accurate classification maps and allometric equations relating DBH or crown area to biomass, that crown parameters can be used to estimate regional biomass. I show that biomass estimated with fine-scale optical sensors does not saturate at high biomass levels as does coarse-scale optical and RADAR sensors. Finally, I address a technical problem to improve quantitative comparison of remote sensing datasets. I present a modification of the empirical line method for normalizing the radiance or reflectance scales of two images. Radiometric normalization of multitemporal remote sensing datasets is a critical

  6. Leaf trichome density may explain herbivory patterns of Actinote sp. (Lepidoptera: Acraeidae) on Liabum mandonii (Asteraceae) in a montane humid forest (Nor Yungas, Bolivia)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Molina-Montenegro, Marco A.; Ávila, Pamela; Hurtado, Rosember; Valdivia, Alejandra I.; Gianoli, Ernesto

    2006-09-01

    Increasing evidence shows that most insect herbivores of tropical forests show specific associations with their hosts. Environmental factors as well as foliar characters can modify insect preference. In the present work, we evaluated in a montane humid forest the preference and herbivory rate of Actinote sp. caterpillars (Lepidoptera: Acraeidae) on mature and young leaves of their specific host plant Liabum mandonii (Asteraceae) in two contrasting sites. Additionally, the density of non-glandular trichomes in young and mature leaves of plant at each site was evaluated. Analysis of variance of herbivory showed significant effects of site, leaf age, and the interaction of these factors. Higher herbivory levels were found on leaves from the site with lower levels of radiation and on mature leaves. On the other hand, trichome density was significantly higher in leaves from the site with higher levels of radiation and in young leaves. This suggests trichomes may explain the observed pattern of herbivory.

  7. Rising Mean Annual Temperature Increases Carbon Flux and Alters Partitioning, but Does Not Change Ecosystem Carbon Storage in Hawaiian Tropical Montane Wet Forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Litton, C. M.; Giardina, C. P.; Selmants, P.

    2014-12-01

    Terrestrial ecosystem carbon (C) storage exceeds that in the atmosphere by a factor of four, and represents a dynamic balance among C input, allocation, and loss. This balance is likely being altered by climate change, but the response of terrestrial C cycling to warming remains poorly quantified, particularly in tropical forests which play a disproportionately large role in the global C cycle. Over the past five years, we have quantified above- and belowground C pools and fluxes in nine permanent plots spanning a 5.2°C mean annual temperature (MAT) gradient (13-18.2°C) in Hawaiian tropical montane wet forest. This elevation gradient is unique in that substrate type and age, soil type, soil water balance, canopy vegetation, and disturbance history are constant, allowing us to isolate the impact of long-term, whole ecosystem warming on C input, allocation, loss and storage. Across the gradient, soil respiration, litterfall, litter decomposition, total belowground C flux, aboveground net primary productivity, and estimates of gross primary production (GPP) all increase linearly and positively with MAT. Carbon partitioning is dynamic, shifting from below- to aboveground with warming, likely in response to a warming-induced increase in the cycling and availability of soil nutrients. In contrast to observed patterns in C flux, live biomass C, soil C, and total ecosystem C pools remained remarkably constant with MAT. There was also no difference in soil bacterial taxon richness, phylogenetic diversity, or community composition with MAT. Taken together these results indicate that in tropical montane wet forests, increased temperatures in the absence of water limitation or disturbance will accelerate C cycling, will not alter ecosystem C storage, and will shift the products of photosynthesis from below- to aboveground. These results agree with an increasing number of studies, and collectively provide a unique insight into anticipated warming-induced changes in tropical

  8. Altered dynamics of broad-leaved tree species in a Chinese subtropical montane mixed forest: the role of an anomalous extreme 2008 ice storm episode.

    PubMed

    Ge, Jielin; Xiong, Gaoming; Wang, Zhixian; Zhang, Mi; Zhao, Changming; Shen, Guozhen; Xu, Wenting; Xie, Zongqiang

    2015-04-01

    Extreme climatic events can trigger gradual or abrupt shifts in forest ecosystems via the reduction or elimination of foundation species. However, the impacts of these events on foundation species' demography and forest dynamics remain poorly understood. Here we quantified dynamics for both evergreen and deciduous broad-leaved species groups, utilizing a monitoring permanent plot in a subtropical montane mixed forest in central China from 2001 to 2010 with particular relevance to the anomalous 2008 ice storm episode. We found that both species groups showed limited floristic alterations over the study period. For each species group, size distribution of dead individuals approximated a roughly irregular and flat shape prior to the ice storm and resembled an inverse J-shaped distribution after the ice storm. Furthermore, patterns of mortality and recruitment displayed disequilibrium behaviors with mortality exceeding recruitment for both species groups following the ice storm. Deciduous broad-leaved species group accelerated overall diameter growth, but the ice storm reduced evergreen small-sized diameter growth. We concluded that evergreen broad-leaved species were more susceptible to ice storms than deciduous broad-leaved species, and ice storm events, which may become more frequent with climate change, might potentially threaten the perpetuity of evergreen-dominated broad-leaved forests in this subtropical region in the long term. These results underscore the importance of long-term monitoring that is indispensible to elucidate causal links between forest dynamics and climatic perturbations.

  9. Will a changed element composition of rainfall - due to climate change - affect the biogeochemical cycle of montane forest soils in Southern Ecuador?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wullaert, H.; Peña, J. L.; González, E.; Valarezo, C.; Wilcke, W.

    2009-04-01

    Increasing biomass burning, fertilization and industrialization in tropical areas will generally lead to a greater N deposition in the Tropics including the northern Andean forests in the coming decades. In previous work, we detected extra Ca deposition from the atmosphere in the northern Andes originating from Sahara dust during a pronounced la Niña event. Therefore, the possible shortening of the El Niño Southern Oscillation might result in more frequent Ca input into the northern Andean forests. We quantify biogeochemical processes in a tropical montane forest in southern Ecuador at 2000 m a.s.l. in response to N and Ca additions to simulate elevated N and Ca deposition from the atmosphere. Four replicate experimental plots under native forest were fertilized with either 50 kg N or 10 kg Ca ha-1 y-1 with urea (46%) and CaCl2.2H2O, respectively, distributed between two dates per year and the effects were compared with non-fertilized control plots. We collected litter percolate with zero-tension lysimeters, soil solution with suction cups at 0.15 and 0.30 m, rainfall and throughfall. Samples were analyzed for concentrations of total N, nitrate, ammonium, dissolved organic nitrogen (DON) and Ca. Two months after the first fertilization, nitrogen addition mainly stimulates microbial activity where in a priming effect ammonium is transferred to nitrate and soil organic matter is mineralised, resulting in increased DON concentrations. This stimulation would also release other nutrients than N which in turn enhance tree growth. Total nitrogen concentration in litter leachate increased slightly after N fertilization from 1.75 mg/l to 1.8 mg/l, which represents about 1.5% of the total applied N. In contrast, the low Ca concentrations in litter leachate doubled from 0.10 mg/l to 0.20 mg/l after Ca addition, which on yearly basis would represent about 15% of the total applied Ca. From these preliminary results we conclude that (i) both added N and Ca are net retained in

  10. 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

  11. A new species of Psychrophrynella (Amphibia, Anura, Craugastoridae) from the humid montane forests of Cusco, eastern slopes of the Peruvian Andes

    PubMed Central

    Ttito, Alex

    2016-01-01

    We describe a new species of Psychrophrynella from the humid montane forest of the Department Cusco in Peru. Specimens were collected at 2,670–3,165 m elevation in the Área de Conservación Privada Ukumari Llakta, Japumayo valley, near Comunidad Campesina de Japu, in the province of Paucartambo. The new species is readily distinguished from all other species of Psychrophrynella but P. bagrecito and P. usurpator by possessing a tubercle on the inner edge of the tarsus, and from these two species by its yellow ventral coloration on abdomen and limbs. Furthermore, the new species is like P. bagrecito and P. usurpator in having an advertisement call composed of multiple notes, whereas other species of Psychrophrynella whose calls are known have a pulsed call (P. teqta) or a short, tonal call composed of a single note. The new species has a snout-vent length of 16.1–24.1 mm in males and 23.3–27.7 mm in females. Like other recently described species in the genus, this new Psychrophrynella inhabits high-elevation forests in the tropical Andes and likely has a restricted geographic distribution. PMID:26989637

  12. A new species of Psychrophrynella (Amphibia, Anura, Craugastoridae) from the humid montane forests of Cusco, eastern slopes of the Peruvian Andes.

    PubMed

    Catenazzi, Alessandro; Ttito, Alex

    2016-01-01

    We describe a new species of Psychrophrynella from the humid montane forest of the Department Cusco in Peru. Specimens were collected at 2,670-3,165 m elevation in the Área de Conservación Privada Ukumari Llakta, Japumayo valley, near Comunidad Campesina de Japu, in the province of Paucartambo. The new species is readily distinguished from all other species of Psychrophrynella but P. bagrecito and P. usurpator by possessing a tubercle on the inner edge of the tarsus, and from these two species by its yellow ventral coloration on abdomen and limbs. Furthermore, the new species is like P. bagrecito and P. usurpator in having an advertisement call composed of multiple notes, whereas other species of Psychrophrynella whose calls are known have a pulsed call (P. teqta) or a short, tonal call composed of a single note. The new species has a snout-vent length of 16.1-24.1 mm in males and 23.3-27.7 mm in females. Like other recently described species in the genus, this new Psychrophrynella inhabits high-elevation forests in the tropical Andes and likely has a restricted geographic distribution.

  13. Contribution of Soil Fauna to Foliar Litter-Mass Loss in Winter in an Ecotone between Dry Valley and Montane Forest in the Upper Reaches of the Minjiang River.

    PubMed

    Peng, Yan; Yang, Wanqin; Li, Jun; Wang, Bin; Zhang, Chuan; Yue, Kai; Wu, Fuzhong

    2015-01-01

    Litter decomposition during winter can provide essential nutrients for plant growth in the subsequent growing season, which plays important role in preventing the expansion of dry areas and maintaining the stability of ecotone ecosystems. However, limited information is currently available on the contributions of soil fauna to litter decomposition during winter in such ecosystems. Therefore, a field experiment that included litterbags with two different mesh sizes (0.04 mm and 3 mm) was conducted to investigate the contribution of soil fauna to the loss of foliar litter mass in winter from November 2013 to April 2014 along the upper reaches of the Minjiang River. Two litter types of the dominant species were selected in each ecosystem: cypress (Cupressus chengiana) and oak (Quercus baronii) in ecotone; cypress (Cupressus chengiana) and clovershrub (Campylotropis macrocarpa) in dry valley; and fir (Abies faxoniana) and birch (Betula albosinensis) in montane forest. Over one winter incubation, foliar litter lost 6.0%-16.1%, 11.4%-26.0%, and 6.4%-8.5% of initial mass in the ecotone, dry valley and montane forest, respectively. Soil fauna showed obvious contributions to the loss of foliar litter mass in all of the ecosystems. The highest contribution (48.5%-56.8%) was observed in the ecotone, and the lowest contribution (0.4%-25.8%) was observed in the montane forest. Compared with other winter periods, thawing period exhibited higher soil fauna contributions to litter mass loss in ecotone and dry valley, but both thawing period and freezing period displayed higher soil fauna contributions in montane forest. Statistical analysis demonstrated that the contribution of soil fauna was significantly correlated with temperature and soil moisture during the winter-long incubation. These results suggest that temperature might be the primary control factor in foliar litter decomposition, but more active soil fauna in the ecotone could contribute more in litter decomposition and

  14. Contribution of Soil Fauna to Foliar Litter-Mass Loss in Winter in an Ecotone between Dry Valley and Montane Forest in the Upper Reaches of the Minjiang River

    PubMed Central

    Peng, Yan; Yang, Wanqin; Li, Jun; Wang, Bin; Zhang, Chuan; Yue, Kai; Wu, Fuzhong

    2015-01-01

    Litter decomposition during winter can provide essential nutrients for plant growth in the subsequent growing season, which plays important role in preventing the expansion of dry areas and maintaining the stability of ecotone ecosystems. However, limited information is currently available on the contributions of soil fauna to litter decomposition during winter in such ecosystems. Therefore, a field experiment that included litterbags with two different mesh sizes (0.04 mm and 3 mm) was conducted to investigate the contribution of soil fauna to the loss of foliar litter mass in winter from November 2013 to April 2014 along the upper reaches of the Minjiang River. Two litter types of the dominant species were selected in each ecosystem: cypress (Cupressus chengiana) and oak (Quercus baronii) in ecotone; cypress (Cupressus chengiana) and clovershrub (Campylotropis macrocarpa) in dry valley; and fir (Abies faxoniana) and birch (Betula albosinensis) in montane forest. Over one winter incubation, foliar litter lost 6.0%-16.1%, 11.4%-26.0%, and 6.4%-8.5% of initial mass in the ecotone, dry valley and montane forest, respectively. Soil fauna showed obvious contributions to the loss of foliar litter mass in all of the ecosystems. The highest contribution (48.5%-56.8%) was observed in the ecotone, and the lowest contribution (0.4%-25.8%) was observed in the montane forest. Compared with other winter periods, thawing period exhibited higher soil fauna contributions to litter mass loss in ecotone and dry valley, but both thawing period and freezing period displayed higher soil fauna contributions in montane forest. Statistical analysis demonstrated that the contribution of soil fauna was significantly correlated with temperature and soil moisture during the winter-long incubation. These results suggest that temperature might be the primary control factor in foliar litter decomposition, but more active soil fauna in the ecotone could contribute more in litter decomposition and

  15. Soil Moisture/ Tree Water Status Dynamics in a Mid-Latitude Montane Forest, Southern Sierra Critical Zone Observatory, CA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hartsough, P. C.; Malazian, A.; Kamai, T.; Roudneva, E.; Hopmans, J. W.

    2009-12-01

    In the Mediterranean climate of the Sierra Nevada, snow pack persists well into the spring after precipitation has effectively stopped. With the onset of summer and continued dry conditions, snow quickly melts, and soil profiles dry out as shrubs and trees deplete the available soil moisture. A better understanding of surface and subsurface water budgets in remote landscapes warrants closer monitoring of moisture and temperature variability in near surfaces soils. As part of the Southern Sierra Critical Zone Observatory (CZO), investigators from University of California deployed approximately 150 soil moisture, water potential and temperature sensors within the root structure of an individual white fir tree (Abies concolor) located in the Kings River Experimental Watershed (KREW). These sensors complement sap flow measurements in the trunk, stem water potential measurements in the canopy, and snow depth measurements, to enable the Southern Sierra CZO researchers to investigate how soil environmental stresses (water, temperature, and nutrients) impact forest ecosystems across the rain-to-snow-dominated transition zone. We captured the dynamics of the soil profile desiccation at various depths beneath the snow pack as soils went from wet to very dry conditions. Monitoring of sap flow and periodic leaf water potential measurements, we tracked the activity of the tree as it responded to changing available moisture in the root zone. All sensors were reactive to moisture and temperature variations and showed dynamic responses to precipitation, snow melt and changes in vegetative demand. We demonstrate here the initial phase of a multi-year deployment of soil moisture sensors as a critical integrator of hydrologic/ biotic interaction in a forested catchment as part of a wider effort to document changing ecosystem response to changing environmental inputs.

  16. 17 years of biogeochemical data from a remote tropical montane forest in Ecuador: Tracing changes in the N cycle under environmental change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leimer, Sophia; Velescu, Andre; Valarezo, Carlos; Wilcke, Wolfgang

    2015-04-01

    Water-bound N cycling in temperate terrestrial ecosystems of the Northern Hemisphere is today mainly inorganic because of anthropogenic release of reactive N to the environment. In little-industrialized and remote areas, in contrast, a larger part of N cycling occurs as dissolved organic N (DON). Since 1998, we intensively study the biogeochemical cycle of a north Andean tropical montane forest in Ecuador. The resulting data set offers the unique opportunity to assess the effects of environmental change on a remote ecosystem. Rainfall, throughfall, stemflow, litter leachate, soil solution in 0.15 and 0.30 m soil depth, and stream water were sampled in weekly resolution and analyzed for total N, NO3-N, NH4-N, DON, total organic C, PO4-P, total dissolved phosphorus, Cl, K, Ca, Mg, and Na. Furthermore, ecological time-series data from other disciplines (e.g., climate or phenological data) is available for the study site, resulting in over 500 ecosystem variables by now. The data set was aggregated to monthly means and analyzed for temporal trends with the non-parametric Seasonal Mann-Kendall test. Our results show that the N cycle changed markedly during the study period along with increasing N deposition and reduced soil moisture. The DON concentrations and the fractional contribution of DON to total N significantly decreased in rainfall, throughfall, and soil solutions. This turn toward inorganic N was most pronounced in rainfall and became weaker along the flow path of water through the system until it disappeared in stream water. Decreasing organic contributions to N cycling were not only caused by increasing inorganic N input but also by reduced DON production and/or enhanced DON decomposition. Such an accelerated DON decomposition might be attributable to less waterlogging and higher nutrient availability, which both were observed at our study site. Significantly increasing NO3-N concentrations and NO3-N/NH4-N concentration ratios in throughfall and litter

  17. Legacy of Pre-Disturbance Spatial Pattern Determines Early Structural Diversity following Severe Disturbance in Montane Spruce Forests

    PubMed Central

    Bače, Radek; Svoboda, Miroslav; Janda, Pavel; Morrissey, Robert C.; Wild, Jan; Clear, Jennifer L.; Čada, Vojtěch; Donato, Daniel C.

    2015-01-01

    Background Severe canopy-removing disturbances are native to many temperate forests and radically alter stand structure, but biotic legacies (surviving elements or patterns) can lend continuity to ecosystem function after such events. Poorly understood is the degree to which the structural complexity of an old-growth forest carries over to the next stand. We asked how pre-disturbance spatial pattern acts as a legacy to influence post-disturbance stand structure, and how this legacy influences the structural diversity within the early-seral stand. Methods Two stem-mapped one-hectare forest plots in the Czech Republic experienced a severe bark beetle outbreak, thus providing before-and-after data on spatial patterns in live and dead trees, crown projections, down logs, and herb cover. Results Post-disturbance stands were dominated by an advanced regeneration layer present before the disturbance. Both major species, Norway spruce (Picea abies) and rowan (Sorbus aucuparia), were strongly self-aggregated and also clustered to former canopy trees, pre-disturbance snags, stumps and logs, suggesting positive overstory to understory neighbourhood effects. Thus, although the disturbance dramatically reduced the stand’s height profile with ~100% mortality of the canopy layer, the spatial structure of post-disturbance stands still closely reflected the pre-disturbance structure. The former upper tree layer influenced advanced regeneration through microsite and light limitation. Under formerly dense canopies, regeneration density was high but relatively homogeneous in height; while in former small gaps with greater herb cover, regeneration density was lower but with greater heterogeneity in heights. Conclusion These findings suggest that pre-disturbance spatial patterns of forests can persist through severe canopy-removing disturbance, and determine the spatial structure of the succeeding stand. Such patterns constitute a subtle but key legacy effect, promoting structural

  18. Variant responses of tree seedling to seasonal drought stress along an elevational transect in tropical montane forests

    PubMed Central

    Song, Xiaoyang; Li, Jieqiong; Zhang, Wenfu; Tang, Yong; Sun, Zhenhua; Cao, Min

    2016-01-01

    Seasonal drought is a common phenomenon in many forests predominated by monsoon climate. The impact of seasonal drought, however, may vary with elevations, and tree species of forests hence may differ in their response to elevations. In this study, we monitored the seasonal variation of seedling species composition, and their relative growth rate (RGR) along an elevational transect in tropical forests of southwest China for two years. We found tree seedling species richness declined with rising elevation. Seedling abundance and species richness increased significantly from dry season to rainy season. In dry season, RGR declined progressively from low to high elevational bands, while positive RGR occurred in each elevation in rainy season. We grouped seedling species into low and high elevation specialists based on their elevational distributions. Seasonal variance in soil moisture may lead to seasonal dynamics of seedling community in this area. Our results suggest that the observed change in local climate over the last 40 years tends to allow the tree species from high elevation to expand their distribution to the lower elevation, while the ranges of those at low elevations could be compressed or at the risk of extinction. PMID:27819274

  19. Impact of Long-Range Transported African Dust Events on Cloud Composition and Physical Properties at a Caribbean Tropical Montane Cloud Forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Valle-Diaz, C. J.; Torres-Delgado, E.; Lee, T.; Collett, J. L.; Cuadra-Rodriguez, L. A.; Prather, K. A.; Spiegel, J.; Eugster, W.

    2012-12-01

    We studied the impact of long-range transported African Dust (LRTAD) on cloud composition and properties at the Caribbean tropical montane cloud forest (TMCF) of Pico del Este (PE), as part of the Puerto Rico African Dust and Clouds Study (PRADACS). Here we present results from measurements performed in July 2011. Bulk chemical analysis of cloud water and rainwater showed pH and conductivity higher in the presence of dust. pH and conductivity were also higher for larger cloud droplets (size cut of 17 μm at 50% efficiency) suggesting a higher content of dust in this fraction. The concentration of the water-soluble ions in rainwater was found to be lower than for cloud water. This in turn translates to higher pH and lower conductivity. African dust influence at PE was confirmed by the presence of nss-Ca, Fe, Mg, Na, and Al in cloud/rain water, and inferred by HYSPLIT trajectories and the satellite images from the Saharan Air Layer (SAL). Interstitial single-particle size and chemistry measured using aerosol time-of-flight mass spectrometry revealed mostly sea-salt particles (Na, Cl, Ca) and dust particles (Fe, Ti, Mg, nss-Ca). Anthropogenic influence detected as the presence of EC, a tracer for combustion processes, was found to be fairly small according to ATOFMS measurements. An increase of total organic carbon, total nitrogen, and dissolved organic carbon was observed during LRTAD events. Cloud droplet distributions revealed that LRTAD can lead to more numerous, but smaller cloud droplets (around 8 μm in average) at PE. However, total liquid water content appeared to be unaffected by this shift of droplet sizes. Overall, differences in the studied physicochemical properties of aerosols and clouds during dust and non-dust events were observed. Our results show that during LRTAD events, aerosol-cloud-precipitation interactions are altered at PE. Detailed results will be presented at the meeting.

  20. A new species of Pristimantis (Amphibia, Anura, Craugastoridae) from a montane forest of the Pui Pui Protected Forest in central Peru (Región Junín)

    PubMed Central

    Lehr, Edgar; Moravec, Jiří

    2017-01-01

    Abstract A new species of frog of the genus Pristimantis is described from a montane forest between 1700 and 1800 m a.s.l. of the Pui Pui Protected Forest (Región Junín) in central Peru. Pristimantis ashaninka sp. n. is described based on five adult females (snout–vent length 23.1–26.7 mm) and ten juveniles (snout-vent length 10.6–13.4). It differs from its congeners by having the skin on dorsum shagreen with many conical tubercles giving it a spinose appearance, lacking a tympanum, having groin, anterior and posterior surfaces of thighs uniformly grayish brown, and a pale bronze iris with fine black reticulations, a median reddish hint horizontally across iris, and a black narrow vertical streak from pupil across lower and upper half of iris. Among the Peruvian Pristimantis that lack a tympanum, Pristimantis ashaninka sp. n. is morphologically most similar to Pristimantis lirellus, Pristimantis martiae, and Pristimantis rhabdocnemus. However, 16S DNA barcoding revealed clear distinctions between all four species of Pristimantis. PMID:28228669

  1. The contribution of large trees to total transpiration rates in a pre-montane tropical forest and its implications for selective logging practices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Orozco, G.; Moore, G. W.; Miller, G. R.

    2012-12-01

    In the humid tropics, conservationists generally prefer selective logging practices over clearcutting. Large valuable timber is removed while the remaining forest is left relatively undisturbed. However, little is known about the impact of selective logging on site water balance. Because large trees have very deep sapwood and exposed canopies, they tend to have high transpiration. The first objective was to evaluate the methods used for scaling sap flow measurements to the watershed with particular emphasis on large trees. The second objective of this study was to determine the relative contribution of large trees to site water balance. Our study was conducted in a pre-montane transitional forest at the Texas A&M University Soltis Center in north-central Costa Rica. During the period between January and July 2012, sap flux was monitored in a 30-m diameter plot within a 10-ha watershed. Two pairs of heat dissipation sensors were installed in the outer 0-20 mm of each of 15 trees selected to represent the full range of tree sizes. In six of the largest trees, depth profiles were recorded at 10-mm intervals to a depth of 60 mm using compensation heat pulse sensors. To estimate sapwood basal area of the entire watershed, a stand survey was conducted in three 30-m-diameter plots. In each plot, we measured basal area of all trees and estimated sapwood basal area from sapwood depth measured in nearly half of the trees. An estimated 36.5% of the total sapwood area in this watershed comes from the outer 20 mm of sapwood, with the remaining 63.5% of sapwood from depths deeper than 20 mm. Nearly 13% of sapwood is from depths beyond 60 mm. Sap velocity profiles indicate the highest flow rates occurred in the 0-2 cm depths, with declines of 17% and 25% in the 20-40 mm and 40-60 mm ranges, respectively. Our results demonstrate the need to measure sap velocity profiles in large tropical trees. If total transpiration had been estimated solely from the 0-20 mm heat dissipation

  2. Rill erosion in burned and salvage logged western montane forests: Effects of logging equipment type, traffic level, and slash treatment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wagenbrenner, J. W.; Robichaud, P. R.; Brown, R. E.

    2016-10-01

    Following wildfires, forest managers often consider salvage logging burned trees to recover monetary value of timber, reduce fuel loads, or to meet other objectives. Relatively little is known about the cumulative hydrologic effects of wildfire and subsequent timber harvest using logging equipment. We used controlled rill experiments in logged and unlogged (control) forests burned at high severity in northern Montana, eastern Washington, and southern British Columbia to quantify rill overland flow and sediment production rates (fluxes) after ground-based salvage logging. We tested different types of logging equipment-feller-bunchers, tracked and wheeled skidders, and wheeled forwarders-as well as traffic levels and the addition of slash to skid trails as a best management practice. Rill experiments were done at each location in the first year after the fire and repeated in subsequent years. Logging was completed in the first or second post-fire year. We found that ground-based logging using heavy equipment compacted soil, reduced soil water repellency, and reduced vegetation cover. Vegetation recovery rates were slower in most logged areas than the controls. Runoff rates were higher in the skidder and forwarder plots than their respective controls in the Montana and Washington sites in the year that logging occurred, and the difference in runoff between the skidder and control plots at the British Columbia site was nearly significant (p = 0.089). Most of the significant increases in runoff in the logged plots persisted for subsequent years. The type of skidder, the addition of slash, and the amount of forwarder traffic did not significantly affect the runoff rates. Across the three sites, rill sediment fluxes were 5-1900% greater in logged plots than the controls in the year of logging, and the increases were significant for all logging treatments except the low use forwarder trails. There was no difference in the first-year sediment fluxes between the feller

  3. Identification of FactorsInfluencing the Puumala Virus Seroprevalence within Its Reservoir in aMontane Forest Environment

    PubMed Central

    Thoma, Bryan R.; Müller, Jörg; Bässler, Claus; Georgi, Enrico; Osterberg, Anja; Schex, Susanne; Bottomley, Christian; Essbauer, Sandra S.

    2014-01-01

    Puumala virus (PUUV) is a major cause of mild to moderate haemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome and is transmitted by the bank vole (Myodes glareolus). There has been a high cumulative incidence of recorded human cases in South-eastern Germany since 2004 when the region was first recognized as being endemic for PUUV. As the area is well known for outdoor recreation and the Bavarian Forest National Park (BFNP) is located in the region, the increasing numbers of recorded cases are of concern. To understand the population and environmental effects on the seroprevalence of PUUV in bank voles we trapped small mammals at 23 sites along an elevation gradient from 317 to 1420m above sea level. Generalized linear mixed effects models(GLMEM) were used to explore associations between the seroprevalence of PUUV in bank voles and climate and biotic factors. We found that the seroprevalence of PUUV was low (6%–7%) in 2008 and 2009, and reached 29% in 2010. PUUV seroprevalence was positively associated with the local species diversity and deadwood layer, and negatively associated with mean annual temperature, mean annual solar radiation, and herb layer. Based on these findings, an illustrative risk map for PUUV seroprevalence prediction in bank voles was created for an area of the national park. The map will help when planning infrastructure in the national park (e.g., huts, shelters, and trails). PMID:25341661

  4. The water and energy exchange of a shaded coffee plantation in the lower montane cloud forest zone of central Veracruz, Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holwerda, F.; Bruijnzeel, L. A.; Barradas, V.; Cervantes, J.

    2012-12-01

    The water and energy fluxes of a shaded coffee plantation in the lower montane cloud forest (LMCF) zone of central Veracruz, Mexico, were measured over a two-year period (September 2006-August 2008) using the eddy covariance method. Complementary measurements of throughfall and stemflow were made to study rainfall interception. The sum of the observed sensible (H) and latent (λE) heat fluxes was almost 95% of the net radiation (Rn) minus the canopy heat storage fluxes, indicating very good energy balance closure. Monthly means of the mid-day (11:00-15:00 h) Bowen ratio (H/λE) and evaporative fraction (λE/Rn) averaged 0.74 +/- 0.12 and 0.56 +/- 0.05, respectively. Energy partitioning showed distinct seasonal variation, with significantly higher Bowen ratios prevailing during the dry season (0.81 +/- 0.13) compared to the rainy season (0.67 +/- 0.06). The lower evaporation rates during the dry season reflected a combination of lower soil moisture availability and a lower leaf area of the Inga shade trees during this part of the year. Both the eddy covariance, and the throughfall and stemflow measurements showed average wet-canopy evaporation rate to be very low (0.05 mm/h) compared to the corresponding rainfall rate (3.06 mm/h). As a result, and despite the low canopy storage capacity of the coffee plantation (Cm, 0.50 mm), interception was dominated by post-event evaporation of intercepted water rather than by within-event evaporation. Comparing the results for the coffee plantation with interception data from mature and secondary LMCFs in the study area suggests that the conversion of LMCF to shade-coffee may lead to a decrease in interception loss of 8-18% of incident rainfall. This decrease is caused by a three- to seven-fold decrease in Cm due to the lower leaf area and smaller epiphyte biomass of the coffee plantation. Comparing the eddy covariance-based estimate of dry-canopy evaporation for the coffee plantation with sapflow-based estimates of

  5. Is the degree of clonality of forest herbs dependent on gap age? Using fingerprinting approaches to assess optimum successional stages for montane forest herbs

    PubMed Central

    Patsias, Kathrin; Bruelheide, Helge

    2011-01-01

    Using molecular fingerprinting (amplified fragment length polymorphism [AFLP] method), we explored the potential of small-scale population analysis for understanding colonization patterns of herb layer species in forests after canopy disturbance. We investigated three common forest understorey species with different life forms (Trientalis europaea, Calamagrostis villosa, and Vaccinium myrtillus) in the Harz Mountains in Germany in three different gap age classes and undisturbed forest. For two of them (T. europaea and C. villosa), we analyzed clone sizes and clonal structure. We hypothesized that clone sizes depend on age since gap formation and are affected by light availability. Mean patch sizes of V. myrtillus, T. europaea, and C. villosa formed were 3.7 m2, 27.9 m2, and 40.6 m2, respectively. Trientalis europaea and C. villosa patches consisted mostly of more than one genet. Largest clone sizes of T. europaea were encountered in gaps of intermediate successional age (15–60 years, averaged minimum estimation of clone sizes: 6.56 m2) whereas clone size of C. villosa was found to be independent from gap age and had a mean minimum clone size of 0.49 m2. In both species, clone size was positively related to light availability. Additionally, there was a positive relationship between clone size and ramet density for T. europaea and C. villosa. Genetic variation was higher within populations of T. europaea and C. villosa than among populations. Trientalis europaea was the only species with a clear genetic isolation by distance, pointing at an equilibrium between gene flow and genetic drift. In conclusion, we showed that forest canopy gap dynamics clearly affect the small-scale structure of populations of understorey plants. Species with high lateral growth rates, such as T. europaea offer the possibility to serve as “ecological clock” for dating ecological processes. PMID:22393501

  6. Changes in winter conditions impact forest management in north temperate forests.

    PubMed

    Rittenhouse, Chadwick D; Rissman, Adena R

    2015-02-01

    Climate change may impact forest management activities with important implications for forest ecosystems. However, most climate change research on forests has focused on climate-driven shifts in species ranges, forest carbon, and hydrology. To examine how climate change may alter timber harvesting and forest operations in north temperate forests, we asked: 1) How have winter conditions changed over the past 60 years? 2) Have changes in winter weather altered timber harvest patterns on public forestlands? 3) What are the implications of changes in winter weather conditions for timber harvest operations in the context of the economic, ecological, and social goals of forest management? Using meteorological information from Climate Data Online and Autoregressive Integrated Moving Average (ARIMA) models we document substantial changes in winter conditions in Wisconsin, including a two- to three-week shortening of frozen ground conditions from 1948 to 2012. Increases in minimum and mean soil temperatures were spatially heterogeneous. Analysis of timber harvest records identified a shift toward greater harvest of jack pine and red pine and less harvest of aspen, black spruce, hemlock, red maple, and white spruce in years with less frozen ground or snow duration. Interviews suggested that frozen ground is a mediating condition that enables low-impact timber harvesting. Climate change may alter frozen ground conditions with complex implications for forest management.

  7. Demographic processes in the montane Atlantic rainforest: molecular and cytogenetic evidence from the endemic frog Proceratophrys boiei.

    PubMed

    Amaro, Renata Cecília; Rodrigues, Miguel Trefaut; Yonenaga-Yassuda, Yatiyo; Carnaval, Ana Carolina

    2012-03-01

    Historical climatic refugia predict genetic diversity in lowland endemics of the Brazilian Atlantic rainforest. Yet, available data reveal distinct biological responses to the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) conditions across species of different altitudinal ranges. We show that species occupying Brazil's montane forests were significantly less affected by LGM conditions relative to lowland specialists, but that pre-Pleistocene tectonics greatly influenced their geographic variation. Our conclusions are based on palaeoclimatic distribution models, molecular sequences of the cytochrome b, 16S, and RAG-1 genes, and karyotype data for the endemic frog Proceratophrys boiei. DNA and chromosomal data identify in P. boiei at least two broadly divergent phylogroups, which have not been distinguished morphologically. Cytogenetic results also indicate an area of hybridization in southern São Paulo. The location of the phylogeographic break broadly matches the location of a NW-SE fault, which underwent reactivation in the Neogene and led to remarkable landscape changes in southeastern Brazil. Our results point to different mechanisms underpinning diversity patterns in lowland versus montane tropical taxa, and help us to understand the processes responsible for the large number of narrow endemics currently observed in montane areas of the southern Atlantic forest hotspot.

  8. Forest conditions in the Gila River Forest Reserve, New Mexico

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rixon, T.F.

    1905-01-01

    The Gila River Forest Reserve was established by proclamation of President McKinley on March 2, 1899. The following is a statement of the boundaries as laid down in the proclamation: "Beginning at a point on the boundary line between New Mexico and Arizona, where it is intersected by the north line of township five (5) south, range twenty-one (21) west, New Mexico principle meridian, New Mexico; thence easterly along the township line to the northeast corner of township five (5) south, range sixteen (16) west; thence southerly along the range line between ranges fifteen (15) and sixteen (16) west, to the southeast corner of township eight (8) south, range sixteen (16) west; thence easterly along the township line to the northeast corner of township nine (9) south, range fifteen (15) west; thence southerly along the range line to the southeast corner of said township; thence easterly along the township line to the northeast corner of township ten (10) south, range ten (10) west; thence southerly along the first guide meridian west, between ranges nine (9) and ten (10) west, to its intersection with the third (3rd) standard parallel south, between townships fifteen (15) and sixteen (16) south; thence westerly along the said third (3rd) standard parallel south to the southwest corner of township fifteen (15) south, range sixteen (16) west; thence northerly along the range line to the northwest corner of said township; thence westerly along the township line to the northeast corner of township fifteen (15) south, range nineteen (19) west; thence southerly along the range line to its intersection with the third (3d) standard parallel south; thence westerly along the third (3rd) standard parallel south to its intersection with the boundary line between New Mexico and Arizona; thence northerly along said boundary line to the point where it intersects the north line of township five (5) south, range twenty-one (21) west, the place of beginning."

  9. Forest conditions in the Black Mesa Forest Reserve, Arizona

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Plummer, F.G.; Rixon, T.F.; Dodwell, Arthur

    1904-01-01

    The Black Mesa Forest Reserve, in Arizona, was created by proclamation of President McKinley dated August 17, 1898. The following are its boundaries; "Beginning at a point on the boundary line between Arizona and New Mexico where it is intersected by the north line of township seven (7) north, range thirty-one (31) east, Gila and Salt River meridian, Arizona; thence westerly along the township line to the southeast corner of township eight (8) north, range twenty-seven (27) east; thence northerly to the northeast corner of said township; thence westerly along the second (2nd) standard parallel north to the southeast corner of township nine (9) north, range twenty-six (26) east; thence northerly to the northeast corner of said township; thence westerly along the township line to the southeast corner of township ten (10) north, range twenty-two (22) east; thence northerly to the northeast corner of said township; thence westerly along the township line to the southeast corner of township eleven (11) north, range nineteen (19) east; thence northerly.along the range line to its point of intersection with the forty miles limit of the grant to the Atlantic and Pacific Railroad Company; thence westerly following the forty miles limit of said grant to its intersection with the range line between ranges five (5) and six (6) east, in township fifteen (15) north; thence southerly to the southwest corner of said township; thence easterly along the township line to the northwest corner of township fourteen (14) north, range seven (7) east; thence southerly along the range line to the southwest corner of township thirteen (13) north, range seven (7) east; thence easterly along the third (3rd) standard parallel north to the northwest corner of township twelve (12) north, range eight (8) east; thence southerly to the south- west corner of said township; thence easterly along the township line to the north- west corner of township eleven (11) north, range twelve (12) east; thence

  10. Contributions to the herpetofauna of the Albertine Rift: Two new species of chameleon (Sauria: Chamaeleonidae) from an isolated montane forest, south eastern Democratic Republic of Congo.

    PubMed

    Tilbury, Colin R; Tolley, Krystal A

    2015-01-13

    Two new species of chameleons from the genera Rhampholeon and Kinyongia are described from an isolated montane forest remnant situated toward the southern end of the Albertine Rift bordering Lake Tanganyika. The closest known localities of species from these genera are 200km and 400km to the north respectively, separated by large intervening tracts of lowland savannah and Brachystegia (Miombo) woodland - habitats not normally inhabited by species of these genera. Rhampholeon hattinghi sp. nov. and Kinyongia mulyai sp. nov. bear superficial resemblances to previously described species (Rh. boulengeri Steindachner and K. adolfifriderici  (Sternfeld)). Rhampholeon hattinghi sp. nov. has a relatively smooth supra-orbital ridge, deep axillary but absent inguinal mite pockets, prominent white spots on the base of the tail and a uniquely derived hemipenal morphology with billowing parasulcal evaginations. Like K. adolfifriderici, Kinyongia mulyai sp. nov. is devoid of a rostral appendage but differs in having a longer and narrower head, a higher upper labial scale count and by the absence of a dorsal crest in the male. To place these new chameleons within the context of their respective genera, Bayesian and maximum likelihood phylogenetic analyses were carried out utilising two mitochondrial (ND2 and 16S) and one nuclear marker (RAG1).  Both chameleons were found to have morphological features that distinguish them from other congeners. Based on phylogenetic analysis they are clearly separate evolutionary lineages and are described as new species. 

  11. Ancestry and divergence of subtropical montane forest isolates: molecular biogeography of the genus Abies (Pinaceae) in southern México and Guatemala.

    PubMed

    Jaramillo-Correa, Juan P; Aguirre-Planter, Erika; Khasa, Damase P; Eguiarte, Luis E; Piñero, Daniel; Furnier, Glenn R; Bousquet, Jean

    2008-05-01

    The genus Abies has a complex history in southern México and Guatemala. In this region, four closely related species, Abies flinckii, A. guatemalensis, A. hickelii, and A. religiosa, are distributed in fragmented and isolated montane populations. Range-wide genetic variation was investigated across species using cytoplasmic DNA markers with contrasted inheritance. Variation at two maternally inherited mitochondrial DNA markers was low. All species shared two of the nine mitotypes detected, while the remaining seven mitochondrial DNA types were restricted to a few isolated stands. Mitochondrial genetic differentiation across taxa was high (G(ST) = 0.933), it was not related to the taxonomic identity (amova; P > 0.05) of the populations, and it was not phylogeographically structured (G(ST) approximately N(ST)). In contrast, variation at three paternally inherited chloroplast DNA microsatellites was high. Chloroplast genetic differentiation was lower (G(ST) = 0.402; R(ST) = 0.547) than for mitochondrial DNA, but it was significantly related to taxonomy (amova; P < 0.001), and exhibited a significant phylogeographical structure (G(ST) < R(ST)). Different analyses of population structure indicated that A. flinckii was the most divergent taxon, while the remaining three species formed a relatively homogeneous group. However, a small number of the populations of these three taxa, all located at the limits of their respective ranges or in the Transverse Volcanic Belt, diverged from this main cluster. These trends suggest that the Mesoamerican Abies share a recent common ancestor and that their divergence and speciation is mainly driven by genetic drift and isolation during the warm interglacial periods.

  12. Extreme river response to climate-induced aggradation in a forested, montane basin, Carbon River, Mount Rainier National Park, Washington, United States

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beyeler, J. D.; Rossi, R. K.; Kennard, P. M.; Beason, S. R.

    2013-12-01

    Climate change is drastically affecting the alpine landscape of Mount Rainier, encouraging glacial retreat, changes in snowpack thickness and longevity, and sediment delivery to downstream fluvial systems, leading to an extremely transport limited system and aggradation of the river valleys. River aggradation encourages devastating interactions between the pro-glacial braided fluvial systems and streamside floodplain ecosystems, in most places occupied by old-growth conifer forests. Current aggradation rates of the channels, bordered by late seral stage riparian forests, inhibit floodplain development, leading to an inverted relationship between perched river channels and lower-elevation adjacent floodplains. This disequilibrium creates a steeper gradient laterally towards the floodplains, rather than downstream; promoting flooding of streamside forest, removal and burial of vegetation with coarse alluvium, incision of avulsion channels, tree mortality, wood recruitment to channels, and ultimately widening the alluviated valley towards the glacially carved hillslopes. Aggradation and loss of streamside old-growth forest poses a significant problem to park infrastructure (e.g. roads, trails, and campgrounds) due to flood damage with as frequent as a two-year event. Other park rivers, the White River and Tahoma Creek, characterize two end-member cases. Despite an extremely perched channel, the White River is relatively stable; experiencing small avulsions while the old-growth streamside forest has remained mostly intact. These relatively small avulsions however severely impact park infrastructure, causing extensive flood damage and closure of the heavily trafficked state highway. Conversely debris flows on Tahoma Creek destroyed the streamside forest and migration across the valley is uninhibited. Mature streamside forests tend to oppose avulsions, sieving wood at the channel margins, promoting sediment deposition and deflection of erosive flows. Our study seeks to

  13. ForWarn Forest Disturbance Change Detection System Provides a Weekly Snapshot of US Forest Conditions to Aid Forest Managers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hargrove, W. W.; Spruce, J.; Kumar, J.; Hoffman, F. M.

    2012-12-01

    The Eastern Forest Environmental Threat Assessment Center and Western Wildland Environmental Assessment Center of the USDA Forest Service have collaborated with NASA Stennis Space Center to develop ForWarn, a forest monitoring tool that uses MODIS satellite imagery to produce weekly snapshots of vegetation conditions across the lower 48 United States. Forest and natural resource managers can use ForWarn to rapidly detect, identify, and respond to unexpected changes in the nation's forests caused by insects, diseases, wildfires, severe weather, or other natural or human-caused events. ForWarn detects most types of forest disturbances, including insects, disease, wildfires, frost and ice damage, tornadoes, hurricanes, blowdowns, harvest, urbanization, and landslides. It also detects drought, flood, and temperature effects, and shows early and delayed seasonal vegetation development. Operating continuously since January 2010, results show ForWarn to be a robust and highly capable tool for detecting changes in forest conditions. To help forest and natural resource managers rapidly detect, identify, and respond to unexpected changes in the nation's forests, ForWarn produces sets of national maps showing potential forest disturbances at 231m resolution every 8 days, and posts the results to the web for examination. ForWarn compares current greenness with the "normal," historically seen greenness that would be expected for healthy vegetation for a specific location and time of the year, and then identifies areas appearing less green than expected to provide a strategic national overview of potential forest disturbances that can be used to direct ground and aircraft efforts. In addition to forests, ForWarn also tracks potential disturbances in rangeland vegetation and agriculural crops. ForWarn is the first national-scale system of its kind based on remote sensing developed specifically for forest disturbances. The ForWarn system had an official unveiling and rollout in

  14. Biomass allocation of montane and desert Pondersoa Pine: An analog for response to climate change

    SciTech Connect

    Callaway, R.M.; DeLucia, E.H. ); Schlesinger, W.H. )

    1994-07-01

    Aboveground biomass allocation of Pinus ponderosa on hydrothermally altered andesite in montane and desert climates was measured. Trees from montane climates had higher leaf mass per unit cross-sectional area of sapwood than trees from desert climates, suggesting a function response to differences in climate. Results also indicate that sapwood mass:leaf mass ratios of P. ponderosa may increase [approx]50% with a 5[degrees]C change in mean growing-season temperature. High proportional allocation of biomass to sapwood may improve water relations of P. ponderosa, but because sapwood contains living parenchyma, respiratory costs may be high. Simulated montane trees were 46-52% taller than desert trees, and montane trees 10 cm in dbh had twice the total aboveground mass of desert counterparts. Simulated 50-cm montane and desert trees were almost identical in total mass, even though the montane tree was 46% taller. The predicted proportion of biomass allocated to bole sapwood increased with size for both montane and desert models; however, the 50-cm desert model contained 8% more total sapwood mass than the taller montane model. Biomass of primary and secondary branches differed considerably. The 50-cm desert model had twice as much biomass in primary branches, whereas the montane model had 3 times more biomass in secondary branches than the desert model. For 10-cm trees of the desert and montane models 29 and 33% of the biomass were leaves, respectively. In larger trees, leaf allocation decreased to 5 and 7% for desert and montane models, respectively. The effects of climate on biomass allocation such as reported here, and corresponding changes in whole-plant assimilation rates must be incorporated into growth-response models used to predict future fluctuations in forest productivity due to global climate change. 35 refs., 3 figs., 3 tabs.

  15. Facilitating adaptation in montane plants to changing precipitation along an elevation gradient

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hess, Steve; Leopold, Christina

    2017-01-01

    Montane plant communities throughout the world have responded to changes in precipitation and temperature regimes by shifting ranges upward in elevation. Continued warmer, drier climate conditions have been documented and are projected to increase in high-elevation areas in Hawai‘i, consistent with climate change effects reported in other environments throughout the world. Organisms that cannot disperse or adapt biologically to projected climate scenarios in situ may decrease in distributional range and abundance over time. Restoration efforts will need to accommodate future climate change and account for the interactive effects of existing invasive species to ensure long-term persistence. As part of a larger, ongoing restoration effort, we hypothesized that plants from a lower-elevation forest ecotype would have higher rates of survival and growth compared to high-elevation forest conspecifics when grown in common plots along an elevation gradient. We monitored climate conditions at planting sites to identify whether temperature or rainfall influenced survival and growth after 20 weeks. We found that origin significantly affected survival in only one of three native montane species, Dodonaea viscosa. Contrary to our hypothesis, 75.2% of seedlings from high-elevation origin survived in comparison to 58.7% of seedlings from low elevation across the entire elevation gradient. Origin also influenced survival in linearized mixed models that controlled for temperature, precipitation, and elevation in D. viscosa and Chenopodium oahuense. Only C. oahuense seedlings had similar predictors of growth and survival. There were no common patterns of growth or survival between species, indicating that responses to changing precipitation and emperature regimes varied between montane plant species. Results also suggest that locally sourced seed is important to ensure highest survival at restoration sites. Further experimentation on larger spatial and temporal scales is necessary

  16. Forest biomass estimation with hemispherical photography for multiple forest types and various atmospheric conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Clark, Joshua Andrew

    The importance of accurately identifying inventories of domestic energy, including forest biomass, has increasingly become a priority of the US government and its citizens as the cost of fossil fuels has risen. It is useful to identify which of these resources can be processed and transported at the lowest cost for both private and public landowners. Accurate spatial inventories of forest biomass can help landowners allocate resources to maximize forest biomass utilization and provide information regarding current forest health (e.g., forest fire potential, insect susceptibility, wildlife habitat range). This research has indicated that hemispherical photography (HP) may be an accurate and low cost sensing technique for forest biomass measurements. In this dissertation: (1) It is shown that HP gap fraction measurements and both above ground biomass and crown biomass have a linear relationship. (2) It is demonstrated that careful manipulation of images improves gap fraction estimates, even under unfavorable atmospheric conditions. (3) It is shown that estimates of Leaf Area Index (LAI), based on transformations of gap fraction measurements, are the best estimator for both above ground forest biomass and crown biomass. (4) It is shown that many factors negatively influence the utility of HP for biomass estimation. (5) It is shown that biomass of forests stands with regular spacing is not modeled well using HP. As researchers continue to explore different methods for forest biomass estimation, HP is likely to remain as a viable technique, especially if LAI can be accurately estimated. However, other methods should be compared with HP, particularly for stands where LAI is poorly estimated by HP.

  17. Impacts of peatland forestation on regional climate conditions in Finland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gao, Yao; Markkanen, Tiina; Backman, Leif; Henttonen, Helena M.; Pietikäinen, Joni-Pekka; Laaksonen, Ari

    2014-05-01

    Climate response to anthropogenic land cover change happens more locally and occurs on a shorter time scale than the global warming due to increased GHGs. Over the second half of last Century, peatlands were vastly drained in Finland to stimulate forest growth for timber production. In this study, we investigate the biophysical effects of peatland forestation on near-surface climate conditions in Finland. For this, the regional climate model REMO, developed in Max Plank Institute (currently in Climate Service Center, Germany), provides an effective way. Two sets of 15-year climate simulations were done by REMO, using the historic (1920s; The 1st Finnish National Forest Inventory) and present-day (2000s; the 10th Finnish National Forest Inventory) land cover maps, respectively. The simulated surface air temperature and precipitation were then analyzed. In the most intensive peatland forestation area in Finland, the differences in monthly averaged daily mean surface air temperature show a warming effect around 0.2 to 0.3 K in February and March and reach to 0.5 K in April, whereas a slight cooling effect, less than 0.2 K, is found from May till October. Consequently, the selected snow clearance dates in model gridboxes over that area are advanced 0.5 to 4 days in the mean of 15 years. The monthly averaged precipitation only shows small differences, less than 10 mm/month, in a varied pattern in Finland from April to September. Furthermore, a more detailed analysis was conducted on the peatland forestation area with a 23% decrease in peatland and a 15% increase in forest types. 11 day running means of simulated temperature and energy balance terms, as well as snow depth were averaged over 15 years. Results show a positive feedback induced by peatland forestation between the surface air temperature and snow depth in snow melting period. This is because the warmer temperature caused by lower surface albedo due to more forest in snow cover period leads to a quicker and

  18. Effects of light, moisture, temperature, and litter on the regeneration of five tree species in the tropical montane wet forest of Puerto Rico

    SciTech Connect

    Everham, E.M.; Myster, R.W.; VanDeGenachte, E.

    1996-12-01

    Field experiments were conducted to investigate the effect of light, moisture, temperature, and litter on the regeneration ot two early-, one mid-, and two late-successional tropical tree species. High light and litter seem to be universally good cues for regeneration, increasing seed/seedling survival for all species except for Cecropia (an early-successional species) whose small seeds may not be able to penetrate the litter layer. In addition, the high temperature environment in both artificially shaded and nonshaded area of a natural gap exhibits less seed loss, an increase in the percent and rate of germination, and an increase in seedling survival for Darcryodes (a late-successional species), than the lower temperature environment under an intact canopy. Low soil water is also a good cue for Dacryodes germination as it is for Prestoea and Cecropia. Finally, the lower temperature environment found under the forest canopy (compared to the natural gap) leads to less seed loss and more germination for Guarea (a mid-successional species). Our results suggest that a good patch for regeneration of many species in this forest, early- as well as late-successional species, would have high light and a litter layer that moderates extremes.

  19. Nine thousand years of upper montane soil/vegetation dynamics from the summit of Caratuva Peak, Southern Brazil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scheer, Maurício B.; Pereira, Nuno Veríssimo; Behling, Hermann; Curcio, Gustavo R.; Roderjan, Carlos V.

    2014-12-01

    to late Holocene, when somewhat wetter and warmer conditions (since around 9000 cal yr BP) enabled a stronger colonization of the ridge of Pico Caratuva by mainly C3 plants, especially grassland species. However, at the same time, even near the summit, the soil core from the forest site already presented the current physiognomy (or a shrubby/elfin or successional forest), indicating that the colonization of the neighboring uppermost saddles and valleys were probably populated mainly by upper montane forest species.

  20. Improving assessments of tropospheric ozone injury to Mediterranean montane conifer forests in California (USA) and Catalonia (Spain) with GIS models related to plant water relations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kefauver, Shawn C.; Peñuelas, Josep; Ustin, Susan L.

    2012-12-01

    The impacts of tropospheric ozone on conifer health in the Sierra Nevada of California, USA, and the Pyrenees of Catalonia, Spain, were measured using field assessments and GIS variables of landscape gradients related to plant water relations, stomatal conductance and hence to ozone uptake. Measurements related to ozone injury included visible chlorotic mottling, needle retention, needle length, and crown depth, which together compose the Ozone Injury Index (OII). The OII values observed in Catalonia were similar to those in California, but OII alone correlated poorly to ambient ozone in all sites. Combining ambient ozone with GIS variables related to landscape variability of plant hydrological status, derived from stepwise regressions, produced models with R2 = 0.35, p = 0.016 in Catalonia, R2 = 0.36, p < 0.001 in Yosemite and R2 = 0.33, p = 0.007 in Sequoia/Kings Canyon National Parks in California. Individual OII components in Catalonia were modeled with improved success compared to the original full OII, in particular visible chlorotic mottling (R2 = 0.60, p < 0.001). The results show that ozone is negatively impacting forest health in California and Catalonia and also that modeling ozone injury improves by including GIS variables related to plant water relations.

  1. Using Modis Imagery to Track Changes in Forest Condition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chastain, R. A.

    2011-12-01

    The objective of the Real-Time Forest Disturbance (RTFD) project is to provide timely information regarding changes in forest conditions to assist the digital aerial sketch-mapping community in flight mission planning. To this end, a digital change detection methodology has been developed and implemented over the conterminous 48 U.S. states (CONUS) in 2008, 2009, and 2010 to track forest disturbances in near real-time (updated every 8 days). The RTFD approach uses MODIS satellite imagery, which provides daily observations to track developing disturbances that may also be ephemeral in nature. Also, the spectral grain of MODIS data permits the calculation of spectral indices, which the RTFD approach uses to characterize changes in forest condition. Baseline image data used in the RTFD method are produced using MODIS data composited from five years prior to the current growing season. In 2011, an additional 3-year baseline has been used in the change detection process. The RTFD approach has detected and tracked numerous defoliation events in the eastern deciduous biome, decline and mortality associated with beetle activity in the western coniferous biome, and forest damage associated with severe weather events. A quantitative retrospective assessment of 2010 RTFD results was performed to identify potential modifications to the analytical logic of the RTFD approach in order to improve detection efficiency. This assessment was performed within six study areas wherein forest disturbances occurred during 2010. Various methodological alterations were assessed within these study areas; principally, the use of different vegetation indices and alterations in baseline definition. Two-date Landsat change detection results acted as reference data to which RTFD results were compared. Differences in levels of agreement between various RTFD results and Landsat results were evaluated for significance using McNemar's test. The findings of this retrospective assessment indicate that a

  2. Phylogenetic and morphologic evidence confirm the presence of a new montane cloud forest associated bird species in Mexico, the Mountain Elaenia (Elaenia frantzii; Aves: Passeriformes: Tyrannidae).

    PubMed

    Hanna, Zachary R; Ortiz-Ramírez, Marco F; Ríos-Muñoz, César A; Cayetano-Rosas, Héctor; Bowie, Rauri C K; Navarro-Sigüenza, Adolfo G

    2016-01-01

    Here we provide evidence to support an extension of the recognized distributional range of the Mountain Elaenia (Elaenia frantzii) to include southern Mexico. We collected two specimens in breeding condition in northwestern Sierra Norte de Chiapas, Mexico. Morphologic and genetic evidence support their identity as Elaenia frantzii. We compared environmental parameters of records across the entire geographic range of the species to those at the northern Chiapas survey site and found no climatic differences among localities.

  3. Phylogenetic and morphologic evidence confirm the presence of a new montane cloud forest associated bird species in Mexico, the Mountain Elaenia (Elaenia frantzii; Aves: Passeriformes: Tyrannidae)

    PubMed Central

    Ortiz-Ramírez, Marco F.; Ríos-Muñoz, César A.; Cayetano-Rosas, Héctor; Bowie, Rauri C. K.; Navarro-Sigüenza, Adolfo G.

    2016-01-01

    Here we provide evidence to support an extension of the recognized distributional range of the Mountain Elaenia (Elaenia frantzii) to include southern Mexico. We collected two specimens in breeding condition in northwestern Sierra Norte de Chiapas, Mexico. Morphologic and genetic evidence support their identity as Elaenia frantzii. We compared environmental parameters of records across the entire geographic range of the species to those at the northern Chiapas survey site and found no climatic differences among localities. PMID:26855860

  4. Temperature Trends in Montane Lakes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Melack, J. M.; Sadro, S.; Jellison, R.

    2014-12-01

    Long-term temperature trends in lakes integrate hydrological and meteorological factors. We examine temperature trends in a small montane lake with prolonged ice-cover and large seasonal snowfall and in a large saline lake. Emerald Lake, located in the Sierra Nevada (California), is representative of high-elevation lakes throughout the region. No significant trend in outflow temperature was apparent from 1991to 2012. Snowfall in the watershed accounted for 93% of the variability in average summer lake temperatures. Mono Lake (California) lies in a closed, montane basin and is hypersaline and monomictic or meromictic. Temperature profiles have been collected from 1982 to 2010. In the upper water column, the July-August-September water temperatures increased 0.8-1.0°C over the 29 years. This rate of warming is less than published estimates based on satellite-derived skin temperatures and will discussed in the context of general limnological interpretation of temperature trends.

  5. Modelling Associations between Public Understanding, Engagement and Forest Conditions in the Inland Northwest, USA

    PubMed Central

    Hartter, Joel; Stevens, Forrest R.; Hamilton, Lawrence C.; Congalton, Russell G.; Ducey, Mark J.; Oester, Paul T.

    2015-01-01

    Opinions about public lands and the actions of private non-industrial forest owners in the western United States play important roles in forested landscape management as both public and private forests face increasing risks from large wildfires, pests and disease. This work presents the responses from two surveys, a random-sample telephone survey of more than 1500 residents and a mail survey targeting owners of parcels with 10 or more acres of forest. These surveys were conducted in three counties (Wallowa, Union, and Baker) in northeast Oregon, USA. We analyze these survey data using structural equation models in order to assess how individual characteristics and understanding of forest management issues affect perceptions about forest conditions and risks associated with declining forest health on public lands. We test whether forest understanding is informed by background, beliefs, and experiences, and whether as an intervening variable it is associated with views about forest conditions on publicly managed forests. Individual background characteristics such as age, gender and county of residence have significant direct or indirect effects on our measurement of understanding. Controlling for background factors, we found that forest owners with higher self-assessed understanding, and more education about forest management, tend to hold more pessimistic views about forest conditions. Based on our results we argue that self-assessed understanding, interest in learning, and willingness to engage in extension activities together have leverage to affect perceptions about the risks posed by declining forest conditions on public lands, influence land owner actions, and affect support for public policies. These results also have broader implications for management of forested landscapes on public and private lands amidst changing demographics in rural communities across the Inland Northwest where migration may significantly alter the composition of forest owner goals

  6. Effect of low glacial atmospheric CO{sub 2} on tropical African montane vegetation

    SciTech Connect

    Jolly, D.; Haxeltine, A.

    1997-05-02

    Estimates of glacial-interglacial climate change in tropical Africa have varied widely. Results from a process-based vegetation model show how montane vegetation in East Africa shifts with changes in both carbon dioxide concentration and climate. For the last glacial maximum, the change in atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration alone could explain the observed replacement of tropical montane forest by a scrub biome. This result implies that estimates of the last glacial maximum tropical cooling based on tree-line shifts must be revised. 30 refs., 2 figs.

  7. The assembly of montane biotas: linking Andean tectonics and climatic oscillations to independent regimes of diversification in Pionus parrots.

    PubMed

    Ribas, Camila C; Moyle, Robert G; Miyaki, Cristina Y; Cracraft, Joel

    2007-10-07

    The mechanisms underlying the taxonomic assembly of montane biotas are still poorly understood. Most hypotheses have assumed that the diversification of montane biotas is loosely coupled to Earth history and have emphasized instead the importance of multiple long-distance dispersal events and biotic interactions, particularly competition, for structuring the taxonomic composition and distribution of montane biotic elements. Here we use phylogenetic and biogeographic analyses of species in the parrot genus Pionus to demonstrate that standing diversity within montane lineages is directly attributable to events of Earth history. Phylogenetic relationships confirm three independent biogeographic disjunctions between montane lineages, on one hand, and lowland dry-forest/wet-forest lineages on the other. Temporal estimates of lineage diversification are consistent with the interpretation that the three lineages were transported passively to high elevations by mountain building, and that subsequent diversification within the Andes was driven primarily by Pleistocene climatic oscillations and their large-scale effects on habitat change. These results support a mechanistic link between diversification and Earth history and have general implications for explaining high altitudinal disjuncts and the origin of montane biotas.

  8. The assembly of montane biotas: linking Andean tectonics and climatic oscillations to independent regimes of diversification in Pionus parrots

    PubMed Central

    Ribas, Camila C; Moyle, Robert G; Miyaki, Cristina Y; Cracraft, Joel

    2007-01-01

    The mechanisms underlying the taxonomic assembly of montane biotas are still poorly understood. Most hypotheses have assumed that the diversification of montane biotas is loosely coupled to Earth history and have emphasized instead the importance of multiple long-distance dispersal events and biotic interactions, particularly competition, for structuring the taxonomic composition and distribution of montane biotic elements. Here we use phylogenetic and biogeographic analyses of species in the parrot genus Pionus to demonstrate that standing diversity within montane lineages is directly attributable to events of Earth history. Phylogenetic relationships confirm three independent biogeographic disjunctions between montane lineages, on one hand, and lowland dry-forest/wet-forest lineages on the other. Temporal estimates of lineage diversification are consistent with the interpretation that the three lineages were transported passively to high elevations by mountain building, and that subsequent diversification within the Andes was driven primarily by Pleistocene climatic oscillations and their large-scale effects on habitat change. These results support a mechanistic link between diversification and Earth history and have general implications for explaining high altitudinal disjuncts and the origin of montane biotas. PMID:17686731

  9. Forest management under changing climate conditions: Is timing a tool for Sustainable Forest Management? Relevant questions for research development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    D'Aprile, Fabrizio; McShane, Paul; Tapper, Nigel

    2013-04-01

    Change of climate conditions influence energy fluxes applicable to forest ecosystems. These affect cycles of nutrients and materials, primary productivity of the ecosystem, biodiversity, ecological functionality and, consequently, carbon equilibria of the forest ecosystem. Temporal factors influence physical, biological, ecological, and climatic processes and functions. For example, seasonality, cycles, periodicity, and trends in climate variables; tree growth, forest growth, and forest metabolic activities (i.e., photosynthesis and respiration) are commonly known to be time-related. In tropical forests, the impacts of changing climate conditions may exceed temperature and/or precipitation thresholds critical to forest tree growth or health. Historically, forest management emphasises growth rates and financial returns as affected by species and site. Until recently, the influence of climate variability on growth dynamics has not been influential in forest planning and management. Under this system, especially in climatic and forest regions where most of species are stenoecious, periodical wood harvesting may occur in any phase of growth (increasing, decreasing, peak, and trough). This scenario presents four main situations: a) harvesting occurs when the rate of growth is decreasing: future productivity is damaged; the minimum biomass capital may be altered, and CO2 storage is negatively affected; b) harvesting occurs during a trough of the rate of growth: the minimum biomass capital necessary to preserve the resilience of the forest is damaged; the damage can be temporary (decades) or permanent; CO2 storage capacity is deficient - which may be read as an indirect emission of CO2 since the balance appears negative; c) harvesting occurs when the rate of growth is increasing: the planned wood mass can be used without compromising the resilience and recovery of the forest; CO2 storage remains increasing; d) harvesting occurs during a peak period of growth: the wood

  10. Population dynamics of the epiphytic bromeliad Tillandsia butzii in cloud forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Toledo-Aceves, Tarin; Hernández-Apolinar, Mariana

    2016-02-01

    Epiphytes are a major component of tropical montane cloud forests. Over-exploitation and forest loss and degradation affect remnant populations. In this study, we analysed the population dynamics of the epiphytic bromeliad Tillandsia butzii over a 2-y period in a tropical montane cloud forest fragment in southern Mexico. Matrix analysis revealed that the T. butzii population is likely to be stable at the study site. On average the λ value did not differ significantly from unity: λ (95% confidence interval) = 0.978 (0.936-1.001). λ was highly influenced by stasis, to a lesser extent by growth and only slightly by fecundity. Overall, adult plant stasis and phalanx growth habit played a fundamental role in population maintenance. T. butzii tolerance to xeric conditions may contribute to population stability in the studied region.

  11. Development history and bibliography of the US Forest Service crown-condition indicator for forest health monitoring.

    PubMed

    Randolph, KaDonna C

    2013-06-01

    Comprehensive assessment of individual-tree crown condition by the US Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) Program has its origins in the concerns about widespread forest decline in Europe and North America that developed in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Programs such as the US National Acid Precipitation Assessment Program, US National Vegetation Survey, Canadian Acid Rain National Early Warning System, and joint US-Canadian North American Sugar Maple Decline Project laid the groundwork for the development of the US Forest Service crown-condition indicator. The crown-condition assessment protocols were selected and refined through literature review, peer review, and field studies in several different forest types during the late 1980s and early 1990s. Between 1980 and 2011, 126 publications relating specifically to the crown-condition indicator were added to the literature. The majority of the articles were published by the US Department of Agriculture, Forest Service or other State or Federal government agency, and more than half were published after 2004.

  12. Condition and fate of logged forests in the Brazilian Amazon.

    PubMed

    Asner, Gregory P; Broadbent, Eben N; Oliveira, Paulo J C; Keller, Michael; Knapp, David E; Silva, José N M

    2006-08-22

    The long-term viability of a forest industry in the Amazon region of Brazil depends on the maintenance of adequate timber volume and growth in healthy forests. Using extensive high-resolution satellite analyses, we studied the forest damage caused by recent logging operations and the likelihood that logged forests would be cleared within 4 years after timber harvest. Across 2,030,637 km2 of the Brazilian Amazon from 1999 to 2004, at least 76% of all harvest practices resulted in high levels of canopy damage sufficient to leave forests susceptible to drought and fire. We found that 16+/-1% of selectively logged areas were deforested within 1 year of logging, with a subsequent annual deforestation rate of 5.4% for 4 years after timber harvests. Nearly all logging occurred within 25 km of main roads, and within that area, the probability of deforestation for a logged forest was up to four times greater than for unlogged forests. In combination, our results show that logging in the Brazilian Amazon is dominated by highly damaging operations, often followed rapidly by deforestation decades before forests can recover sufficiently to produce timber for a second harvest. Under the management regimes in effect at the time of our study in the Brazilian Amazon, selective logging would not be sustained.

  13. [Turbulent characteristics in forest canopy under atmospheric neutral condition].

    PubMed

    Diao, Yi-Wei; Guan, De-Xin; Jin, Chang-Jie; Wang, An-Zhi; Pei, Tie-Fan

    2010-02-01

    Based on the micrometeorological data of broad-leaved Korean pine forest in Changbai Mountain in 2003, a second-order closure model was employed to calculate and analyze the turbulent characteristics within and above the canopy of the forest. The calculated mean wind profile was coincident with the measured one. The Reynolds stress within the forest was significantly attenuated. The turbulent strength, velocity flux, and skew were the largest at forest-atmosphere interface, as well the wind shear. With the increase of velocity skew, the turbulent intermittence became more significant, and the downward turbulent eddy within the canopy was limited. Most of the turbulent deeply within the forest canopy was produced by the non-local contributions above the canopy.

  14. Leaky nitrogen cycle in pristine African montane rainforest soil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rütting, Tobias; Cizungu Ntaboba, Landry; Roobroeck, Dries; Bauters, Marijn; Huygens, Dries; Boeckx, Pascal

    2015-10-01

    Many pristine humid tropical forests show simultaneously high nitrogen (N) richness and sustained loss of bioavailable N forms. To better understand this apparent upregulation of the N cycle in tropical forests, process-based understanding of soil N transformations, in geographically diverse locations, remains paramount. Field-based evidence is limited and entirely lacking for humid tropical forests on the African continent. This study aimed at filling both knowledge gaps by monitoring N losses and by conducting an in situ 15N labeling experiment in the Nyungwe tropical montane forest in Rwanda. Here we show that this tropical forest shows high nitrate (NO3-) leaching losses, confirming findings from other parts of the world. Gross N transformation rates point to an open soil N cycle with mineralized N nitrified rather than retained via immobilization; gross immobilization of NH4+ and NO3- combined accounted for 37% of gross mineralization, and plant N uptake is dominated by ammonium (NH4+). This study provided new process understanding of soil N cycling in humid tropical forests and added geographically independent evidence that humid tropical forests are characterized by soil N dynamics and N inputs sustaining bioavailable N loss.

  15. Modification of global precipitation data for enhanced hydrologic modeling of tropical montane watersheds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Strauch, Michael; Kumar, Rohini; Eisner, Stephanie; Mulligan, Mark; Reinhardt, Julia; Samaniego, Luis; Santini, William; Vetter, Tobias; Friesen, Jan

    2016-04-01

    Global gridded precipitation is an essential driving input for hydrologic models to simulate runoff dynamics in large river basins. However, the data often fail to adequately represent precipitation variability in mountainous regions due to orographic effects and sparse and highly uncertain gauge data. Water balance simulations in tropical montane regions covered by cloud forests are especially challenging because of the additional water input from cloud water interception. The ISI-MIP2 hydrologic model ensemble encountered these problems for Andean sub-basins of the Upper Amazon Basin, where all models significantly underestimated observed runoff. In this paper, we propose simple yet plausible ways to adjust global precipitation data provided by WFDEI, the WATCH Forcing Data methodology applied to ERA-Interim reanalysis, for tropical montane watersheds. The modifications were based on plausible reasoning and freely available tropics-wide data: (i) a high-resolution climatology of the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) and (ii) the percentage of tropical montane cloud forest cover. Using the modified precipitation data, runoff predictions significantly improved for all hydrologic models considered. The precipitation adjustment methods presented here have the potential to enhance other global precipitation products for hydrologic model applications in the Upper Amazon Basin as well as in other tropical montane watersheds.

  16. Land Use Change Effects on Catchment Runoff Response in a Humid Tropical Montane Region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Munoz Villers, L. E.; McDonnell, J.; Geissert Kientz, D. R.

    2014-12-01

    The provision and regulation of water flows in catchments is probably the most important ecosystem functioning of tropical montane cloud forests (TMCF), however its hydrological dynamics and impacts associated with forest conversion remain very poorly understood. The present study aimed to compare the annual, seasonal and event-scale streamflow patterns and runoff generation processes of three neighbouring headwater catchments in eastern Mexico with similar pedological and geological characteristics, but different land cover: old-growth TMCF, 20 yr-old naturally regenerating TMCF and a heavily grazed pasture. We used a 2 yr record of rainfall and stream flow data in combination with isotope and chemical tracer data collected for a series of storms during a 6-week period of increasing antecedent wetness (wetting-up cycle). Our results showed that annual and seasonal streamflow patterns in the mature and secondary forest were similar. Conversely, the pasture showed higher annual streamflow (10%), however 50% on average lower baseflow at the end of the dry season, associated probably to more gentle slopes in combination with lower soil infiltration capacity, and thus reduced recharge of subsurface water storages. During the wetting-up cycle, storm runoff ratios increased at all three catchments (from 11 to 54% for the mature forest, 7 to 52% for the secondary forest and 3 to 59% for the pasture). With the increasing antecedent wetness, the analysis showed progressive increases of pre-event water contributions to total stormflow (from 35 to 99% in the mature forest, 26 to 92% in the secondary forest and 64 to 97% in the pasture). At all sites, rainfall-runoff responses were dominated by subsurface flow processes. However, for the largest and most intense storm sampled (typically occurring once every 2 yr), the event water contribution in the pasture (34%) was much higher than in the forests (5% on average), indicating that rainfall infiltration capacity of the pasture

  17. RIPARIAN FOREST INDICATORS OF POTENTIAL FUTURE STREAM CONDITION

    EPA Science Inventory

    Large wood in streams can play an extraordinarily important role in influencing the physical structure of streams and in providing habitat for aquatic organisms. Since wood is continually lost from streams, predicting the future input of wood to streams from riparian forests is c...

  18. BIRD COMMUNITIES AND HABITAT AS ECOLOGICAL INDICATORS OF FOREST CONDITION IN REGIONAL MONITORING

    EPA Science Inventory

    Ecological indicators for long-term monitoring programs are needed to detect and assess changing environmental conditions, We developed and tested community-level environmental indicators for monitoring forest bird populations and associated habitat. We surveyed 197 sampling plo...

  19. Assessment of oak forest condition based on leaf biochemical variables and chlorophyll fluorescence.

    PubMed

    Rossini, Micol; Panigada, Cinzia; Meroni, Michele; Colombo, Roberto

    2006-11-01

    Pedunculate oak forests (Quercus robur L.) in the Ticino Regional Park, Italy, are declining as a result of insect attacks, summer droughts and air pollution. The assessment and monitoring of forest condition can provide a basis for managing and conserving forest ecosystems and thereby avoid loss of valuable natural resources. Currently, most forest assessments are limited to ground-based visual evaluations that are local and subjective. It is therefore difficult to compare data collected by different crews or to define reliable trends over years. We examined vegetation variables that can be quantitatively estimated by remote observations and, thus, are suitable for objective monitoring over extended forested areas. We found that total chlorophyll (Chl) concentration is the most suitable variable for assessing pedunculate oak decline. It is highly correlated with visual assessments of discoloration. Furthermore, Chl concentration can be accurately estimated from leaf optical properties, making it feasible to map Chl concentration at the canopy level from satellite and airborne remote observations.

  20. Forest structure in low-diversity tropical forests: a study of Hawaiian wet and dry forests.

    PubMed

    Ostertag, Rebecca; Inman-Narahari, Faith; Cordell, Susan; Giardina, Christian P; Sack, Lawren

    2014-01-01

    The potential influence of diversity on ecosystem structure and function remains a topic of significant debate, especially for tropical forests where diversity can range widely. We used Center for Tropical Forest Science (CTFS) methodology to establish forest dynamics plots in montane wet forest and lowland dry forest on Hawai'i Island. We compared the species diversity, tree density, basal area, biomass, and size class distributions between the two forest types. We then examined these variables across tropical forests within the CTFS network. Consistent with other island forests, the Hawai'i forests were characterized by low species richness and very high relative dominance. The two Hawai'i forests were floristically distinct, yet similar in species richness (15 vs. 21 species) and stem density (3078 vs. 3486/ha). While these forests were selected for their low invasive species cover relative to surrounding forests, both forests averaged 5->50% invasive species cover; ongoing removal will be necessary to reduce or prevent competitive impacts, especially from woody species. The montane wet forest had much larger trees, resulting in eightfold higher basal area and above-ground biomass. Across the CTFS network, the Hawaiian montane wet forest was similar to other tropical forests with respect to diameter distributions, density, and aboveground biomass, while the Hawai'i lowland dry forest was similar in density to tropical forests with much higher diversity. These findings suggest that forest structural variables can be similar across tropical forests independently of species richness. The inclusion of low-diversity Pacific Island forests in the CTFS network provides an ∼80-fold range in species richness (15-1182 species), six-fold variation in mean annual rainfall (835-5272 mm yr(-1)) and 1.8-fold variation in mean annual temperature (16.0-28.4°C). Thus, the Hawaiian forest plots expand the global forest plot network to enable testing of ecological theory for

  1. Genetic structure of colline and montane populations of an endangered plant species

    PubMed Central

    Maurice, Tiphaine; Matthies, Diethart; Muller, Serge; Colling, Guy

    2016-01-01

    Due to land-use intensification, lowland and colline populations of many plants of nutrient-poor grasslands have been strongly fragmented in the last decades, with potentially negative consequences for their genetic diversity and persistence. Populations in mountains might represent a genetic reservoir for grassland plants, because they have been less affected by land-use changes. We studied the genetic structure and diversity of colline and montane Vosges populations of the threatened perennial plant Arnica montana in western central Europe using AFLP markers. Our results indicate that in contrast to our expectation even strongly fragmented colline populations of A. montana have conserved a considerable amount of genetic diversity. However, mean seed mass increased with the proportion of polymorphic loci, suggesting inbreeding effects in low diversity populations. At a similar small geographical scale, there was a clear IBD pattern for the montane Vosges but not for the colline populations. However, there was a strong IBD-pattern for the colline populations at a large geographical scale suggesting that this pattern is a legacy of historical gene flow, as most of the colline populations are today strongly isolated from each other. Genetic differentiation between colline and montane Vosges populations was strong. Moreover, results of a genome scan study indicated differences in loci under selection, suggesting that plants from montane Vosges populations might be maladapted to conditions at colline sites. Our results suggest caution in using material from montane populations of rare plants for the reinforcement of small genetically depauperate lowland populations. PMID:27519913

  2. Genetic structure of colline and montane populations of an endangered plant species.

    PubMed

    Maurice, Tiphaine; Matthies, Diethart; Muller, Serge; Colling, Guy

    2016-08-12

    Due to land-use intensification, lowland and colline populations of many plants of nutrient-poor grasslands have been strongly fragmented in the last decades, with potentially negative consequences for their genetic diversity and persistence. Populations in mountains might represent a genetic reservoir for grassland plants, because they have been less affected by land-use changes. We studied the genetic structure and diversity of colline and montane Vosges populations of the threatened perennial plant Arnica montana in western central Europe using AFLP markers. Our results indicate that in contrast to our expectation even strongly fragmented colline populations of A. montana have conserved a considerable amount of genetic diversity. However, mean seed mass increased with the proportion of polymorphic loci, suggesting inbreeding effects in low diversity populations. At a similar small geographical scale there was a clear IBD pattern for the montane Vosges but not for the colline populations. However, there was a strong IBD-pattern for the colline populations at a large geographical scale suggesting that this pattern is a legacy of historical gene flow, as most of the colline populations are today strongly isolated from each other. Genetic differentiation between colline and montane Vosges populations was strong. Moreover, results of a genome scan study indicated differences in loci under selection, suggesting that plants from montane Vosges populations might be maladapted to conditions at colline sites. Our results suggest caution in using material from montane populations of rare plants for the reinforcement of small genetically depauperate lowland populations.

  3. Large-scale patterns of turnover and Basal area change in Andean forests.

    PubMed

    Báez, Selene; Malizia, Agustina; Carilla, Julieta; Blundo, Cecilia; Aguilar, Manuel; Aguirre, Nikolay; Aquirre, Zhofre; Álvarez, Esteban; Cuesta, Francisco; Duque, Álvaro; Farfán-Ríos, William; García-Cabrera, Karina; Grau, Ricardo; Homeier, Jürgen; Linares-Palomino, Reynaldo; Malizia, Lucio R; Cruz, Omar Melo; Osinaga, Oriana; Phillips, Oliver L; Reynel, Carlos; Silman, Miles R; Feeley, Kenneth J

    2015-01-01

    General patterns of forest dynamics and productivity in the Andes Mountains are poorly characterized. Here we present the first large-scale study of Andean forest dynamics using a set of 63 permanent forest plots assembled over the past two decades. In the North-Central Andes tree turnover (mortality and recruitment) and tree growth declined with increasing elevation and decreasing temperature. In addition, basal area increased in Lower Montane Moist Forests but did not change in Higher Montane Humid Forests. However, at higher elevations the lack of net basal area change and excess of mortality over recruitment suggests negative environmental impacts. In North-Western Argentina, forest dynamics appear to be influenced by land use history in addition to environmental variation. Taken together, our results indicate that combinations of abiotic and biotic factors that vary across elevation gradients are important determinants of tree turnover and productivity in the Andes. More extensive and longer-term monitoring and analyses of forest dynamics in permanent plots will be necessary to understand how demographic processes and woody biomass are responding to changing environmental conditions along elevation gradients through this century.

  4. Large-Scale Patterns of Turnover and Basal Area Change in Andean Forests

    PubMed Central

    Blundo, Cecilia; Aguilar, Manuel; Aguirre, Nikolay; Aquirre, Zhofre; Álvarez, Esteban; Cuesta, Francisco; Farfán-Ríos, William; García-Cabrera, Karina; Grau, Ricardo; Linares-Palomino, Reynaldo; Malizia, Lucio R.; Cruz, Omar Melo; Osinaga, Oriana; Reynel, Carlos; Silman, Miles R.

    2015-01-01

    General patterns of forest dynamics and productivity in the Andes Mountains are poorly characterized. Here we present the first large-scale study of Andean forest dynamics using a set of 63 permanent forest plots assembled over the past two decades. In the North-Central Andes tree turnover (mortality and recruitment) and tree growth declined with increasing elevation and decreasing temperature. In addition, basal area increased in Lower Montane Moist Forests but did not change in Higher Montane Humid Forests. However, at higher elevations the lack of net basal area change and excess of mortality over recruitment suggests negative environmental impacts. In North-Western Argentina, forest dynamics appear to be influenced by land use history in addition to environmental variation. Taken together, our results indicate that combinations of abiotic and biotic factors that vary across elevation gradients are important determinants of tree turnover and productivity in the Andes. More extensive and longer-term monitoring and analyses of forest dynamics in permanent plots will be necessary to understand how demographic processes and woody biomass are responding to changing environmental conditions along elevation gradients through this century. PMID:25973977

  5. Clouds, Wind and the Biogeography of Central American Cloud Forests: Remote Sensing, Atmospheric Modeling, and Walking in the Jungle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lawton, R.; Nair, U. S.

    2011-12-01

    Cloud forests stand at the core of the complex of montane ecosystems that provide the backbone to the multinational Mesoamerican Biological Corridor, which seeks to protect a biodiversity conservation "hotspot" of global significance in an area of rapidly changing land use. Although cloud forests are generally defined by frequent and prolonged immersion in cloud, workers differ in their feelings about "frequent" and "prolonged", and quantitative assessments are rare. Here we focus on the dry season, in which the cloud and mist from orographic cloud plays a critical role in forest water relations, and discuss remote sensing of orographic clouds, and regional and atmospheric modeling at several scales to quantitatively examine the distribution of the atmospheric conditions that characterize cloud forests. Remote sensing using data from GOES reveals diurnal and longer scale patterns in the distribution of dry season orographic clouds in Central America at both regional and local scales. Data from MODIS, used to calculate the base height of orographic cloud banks, reveals not only the geographic distributon of cloud forest sites, but also striking regional variation in the frequency of montane immersion in orographic cloud. At a more local scale, wind is known to have striking effects on forest structure and species distribution in tropical montane ecosystems, both as a general mechanical stress and as the major agent of ecological disturbance. High resolution regional atmospheric modeling using CSU RAMS in the Monteverde cloud forests of Costa Rica provides quantitative information on the spatial distribution of canopy level winds, insight into the spatial structure and local dynamics of cloud forest communities. This information will be useful in not only in local conservation planning and the design of the Mesoamerican Biological Corridor, but also in assessments of the sensitivity of cloud forests to global and regional climate changes.

  6. Tracking climate change in a dispersal-limited species: reduced spatial and genetic connectivity in a montane salamander.

    PubMed

    Velo-Antón, G; Parra, J L; Parra-Olea, G; Zamudio, K R

    2013-06-01

    Tropical montane taxa are often locally adapted to very specific climatic conditions, contributing to their lower dispersal potential across complex landscapes. Climate and landscape features in montane regions affect population genetic structure in predictable ways, yet few empirical studies quantify the effects of both factors in shaping genetic structure of montane-adapted taxa. Here, we considered temporal and spatial variability in climate to explain contemporary genetic differentiation between populations of the montane salamander, Pseudoeurycea leprosa. Specifically, we used ecological niche modelling (ENM) and measured spatial connectivity and gene flow (using both mtDNA and microsatellite markers) across extant populations of P. leprosa in the Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt (TVB). Our results indicate significant spatial and genetic isolation among populations, but we cannot distinguish between isolation by distance over time or current landscape barriers as mechanisms shaping population genetic divergences. Combining ecological niche modelling, spatial connectivity analyses, and historical and contemporary genetic signatures from different classes of genetic markers allows for inference of historical evolutionary processes and predictions of the impacts future climate change will have on the genetic diversity of montane taxa with low dispersal rates. Pseudoeurycea leprosa is one montane species among many endemic to this region and thus is a case study for the continued persistence of spatially and genetically isolated populations in the highly biodiverse TVB of central Mexico.

  7. Modelling the meteorological forest fire niche in heterogeneous pyrologic conditions.

    PubMed

    De Angelis, Antonella; Ricotta, Carlo; Conedera, Marco; Pezzatti, Gianni Boris

    2015-01-01

    Fire regimes are strongly related to weather conditions that directly and indirectly influence fire ignition and propagation. Identifying the most important meteorological fire drivers is thus fundamental for daily fire risk forecasting. In this context, several fire weather indices have been developed focussing mainly on fire-related local weather conditions and fuel characteristics. The specificity of the conditions for which fire danger indices are developed makes its direct transfer and applicability problematic in different areas or with other fuel types. In this paper we used the low-to-intermediate fire-prone region of Canton Ticino as a case study to develop a new daily fire danger index by implementing a niche modelling approach (Maxent). In order to identify the most suitable weather conditions for fires, different combinations of input variables were tested (meteorological variables, existing fire danger indices or a combination of both). Our findings demonstrate that such combinations of input variables increase the predictive power of the resulting index and surprisingly even using meteorological variables only allows similar or better performances than using the complex Canadian Fire Weather Index (FWI). Furthermore, the niche modelling approach based on Maxent resulted in slightly improved model performance and in a reduced number of selected variables with respect to the classical logistic approach. Factors influencing final model robustness were the number of fire events considered and the specificity of the meteorological conditions leading to fire ignition.

  8. Modelling the Meteorological Forest Fire Niche in Heterogeneous Pyrologic Conditions

    PubMed Central

    De Angelis, Antonella; Ricotta, Carlo; Conedera, Marco; Pezzatti, Gianni Boris

    2015-01-01

    Fire regimes are strongly related to weather conditions that directly and indirectly influence fire ignition and propagation. Identifying the most important meteorological fire drivers is thus fundamental for daily fire risk forecasting. In this context, several fire weather indices have been developed focussing mainly on fire-related local weather conditions and fuel characteristics. The specificity of the conditions for which fire danger indices are developed makes its direct transfer and applicability problematic in different areas or with other fuel types. In this paper we used the low-to-intermediate fire-prone region of Canton Ticino as a case study to develop a new daily fire danger index by implementing a niche modelling approach (Maxent). In order to identify the most suitable weather conditions for fires, different combinations of input variables were tested (meteorological variables, existing fire danger indices or a combination of both). Our findings demonstrate that such combinations of input variables increase the predictive power of the resulting index and surprisingly even using meteorological variables only allows similar or better performances than using the complex Canadian Fire Weather Index (FWI). Furthermore, the niche modelling approach based on Maxent resulted in slightly improved model performance and in a reduced number of selected variables with respect to the classical logistic approach. Factors influencing final model robustness were the number of fire events considered and the specificity of the meteorological conditions leading to fire ignition. PMID:25679957

  9. Montane conifer fuel dynamics, Yosemite National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    van Wagtendonk, J.W.; Moore, P.E.

    1997-01-01

    Litter and woody fuel accumulation rates over 7 years for 7 montane Sierra Nevada conifer species, including giant sequoia, ponderosa pine, sugar pine, Jeffrey pine, incense-cedar and white fir. Data are from four sites per size class per species with four size classes each. Nonspatial, georeferenced.

  10. Soil microbial diversity, site conditions, shelter forest land, saline water drip-irrigation, drift desert.

    PubMed

    Jin, Zhengzhong; Lei, Jiaqiang; Li, Shengyu; Xu, Xinwen

    2013-10-01

    Soil microbes in forest land are crucial to soil development in extreme areas. In this study, methods of conventional culture, PLFA and PCR-DGGE were utilized to analyze soil microbial quantity, fatty acids and microbial DNA segments of soils subjected to different site conditions in the Tarim Desert Highway forest land. The main results were as follows: the soil microbial amount, diversity indexes of fatty acid and DNA segment differed significantly among sites with different conditions (F < F0.05 ). Specifically, the values were higher in the middle and base of dunes than the top part of dunes and hardened flat sand, but all values for dunes were higher than for drift sand. Bacteria was dominant in the soil microbial community (>84%), followed by actinomycetes and then fungi (<0.05%). Vertical differences in the soil microbial diversity were insignificant at 0-35 cm. Correlation analysis indicated that the forest trees grew better as the soil microbial diversity index increased. Therefore, construction of the Tarim Desert Highway shelter-forest promoted soil biological development; however, for enhancing sand control efficiency and promoting sand development, we should consider the effects of site condition in the construction and regeneration of shelter-forest ecological projects.

  11. Ongoing change of site conditions important for sustainable forest management planning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bidló, András; Horváth, Adrienn; Gulyás, Krisztina; Gálos, Borbála

    2016-04-01

    Observed tree mortality of the last decades has shown that the vulnerable forest ecosystems are especially affected by the recurrent, long lasting droughts, heat waves and their consequences. From all site conditions climate is changing the fastest, in this way it can be the largest threatening factor in the 21st century. Beyond climate, soil characteristics are playing an important influencing role. Until now, silvicultural technologies and species preferences of many countries are prescribed by binding regulation based on climate conditions that are assumed to be constant over time. Therefore the aim of our research was to investigate the ongoing and projected change of site conditions that are considered to be of primary importance in terms of tree species selection. For a case study region in Hungary (Keszthely Mountains, near to Lake Balaton) long-term climate tendencies have been determined for the period 1961-2100, as well as a detailed soil sample analysis has been carried out including ~100 sites. Results show a 0.5 degree increase of temperature and a 6-7 % decrease of the precipitation amount for the summer months in the last decades. For the future, significant warming and drying of summers is expected. Decrease of the summer precipitation sum can exceed 25 % until the end of the century, probability of extreme hot days may increase. These tendencies together with the unfavourable soil conditions and biotic damages can be the reason of the ongoing forest dieback. One of the characteristic soil type of the region is rendzina with a thin topsoil layer and an unfavourable water holding capacity. These properties are limiting the amount of available water for plants, especially in case of intense precipitation events. Black pine stands planted on rendzinas after many years of grazing; therefore erosion may have played a significant role. Not only microclimate conditions but also soil types show a large diversity within a relatively small distance. However

  12. Reference conditions for giant sequoia forest restoration: structure, process, and precision

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stephenson, Nathan L.

    1999-01-01

    National Park Service policy directs that more natural conditions be restored to giant sequoia groves, which have been altered by a century of fire exclusion. Efforts to find a reasonable and practical definition of “natural” have helped drive scientists and land managers to use past grove conditions as reference conditions for restoration. Extensive research aimed at determining reference conditions has demonstrated that past fire regimes can be characterized with greater precision than past grove structures. Difficulty and imprecision in determining past grove structure has helped fuel a debate between “structural restorationists,” who believe that forest structure should be restored mechanically before fire is reintroduced, and “process restorationists,” who believe that simple reintroduction of fire is appropriate. I evaluate old and new studies from sequoia groves to show that some of the arguments of both groups have been flawed. Importantly, it appears that restoration of fire without a preceding mechanical restoration may restore the pre-Euro-American structure of sequoia groves, at least within the bounds of our imprecise knowledge of past grove structure. However, the same may not be true for all forest types that have experienced lengthy fire exclusion. Our ability to draw robust generalizations about fire's role in forest restoration will depend heavily on a thorough understanding of past and present interactions among climate, fire, and forest structure. Use of reference conditions will be central to developing this understanding.

  13. Genera variation of tropical mid-upper montane rainforest inferred from a marine pollen record in southern Philippines during the glacial-interglacial cycle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bian, Y.

    2015-12-01

    Tropical vegetation is the most outstanding and obvious feature of South-East Asia, and it is expected to provide valuable information for the palaeoclmatic conditions. Pollen records from the tropical West Pacific indicate that the tropical vegetation is much sensitive to the environment and climate change, and their good correspondence with palaeocliamte change in glacial/interglacial timescales. It is shown that the range of the tropical montane rainforest was affected by the temperature change during the glacial cycle. But, from some marine core, the genera variation of tropical mid-upper montane pollen record is also distinct during the glacial cycle. In this study, examination of the pollen content of marine core MD06-3075 taken from Davao Gulf in the Southern Philippines reveals a ~116,000 year record of tropical vegetation change as well as the influence of the environment and climate variability on the ecosystem of the tropical area. Chronology was determined by 16 AMS 14C dates and a detailed oxygen isotope record. A high representation of pollen from tropical upper montane rainforest (mainly Podocarpus) (40-60%) during the last glacial period indicates that this forest type extended to lower attitudes. And the genera variations of the tropical mid-upper montane rainforest exist between the Phyllocladus and Podocarpus with the environment and climate changing. The pollen content of Phyllocladus is much high in marine isotope stage (MIS) 5, but Podocarpus is much higher in the glacial period. During the onset of MIS 5a and 5c, the percentage of Phyllocladus pollen declines dramatically. Vegetation investigation in Mindanao, shows that Podocarpus exists in altitude ranging from 1,200-1,700 m, and Phyllocladus appear in altitude range from 1700-2100 m, but is more abundant above the 2,400 m. Thus, Phyllocladus might be more sensitive to the temperature change. Then, in this study, the pollen content of is much high during the interglacial period

  14. A PROBABILITY SURVEY OF SUCCESSIONAL FOREST COMPOSITION AND CONDITION IN A GREAT RIVER FLOODPLAIN LANDSCAPE

    EPA Science Inventory

    Floodplains within the Great River Ecosystems (GREs) of the central U.S. are composed of dynamic mosaics of successional habitat that (when unmodified) are typically dominated by cottonwood forest (Populus ssp.). GRE riparian habitat condition and successional dynamics are linked...

  15. Tropical land-cover change alters biogeochemical inputs to ecosystems in a Mexican montane landscape.

    PubMed

    Ponette-González, A G; Weathers, K C; Curran, L M

    2010-10-01

    In tropical regions, the effects of land-cover change on nutrient and pollutant inputs to ecosystems remain poorly documented and may be pronounced, especially in montane areas exposed to elevated atmospheric deposition. We examined atmospheric deposition and canopy interactions of sulfate-sulfur (SO4(2-)-S), chloride (Cl-), and nitrate-nitrogen (NO(3-)-N) in three extensive tropical montane land-cover types: clearings, forest, and coffee agroforest. Bulk and fog deposition to clearings was measured as well as throughfall (water that falls through plant canopies) ion fluxes in seven forest and five coffee sites. Sampling was conducted from 2005 to 2008 across two regions in the Sierra Madre Oriental, Veracruz, Mexico. Annual throughfall fluxes to forest and coffee sites ranged over 6-27 kg SO4(2-)-S/ha, 12-69 kg Cl-/ha, and 2-6 kg NO(3-)-N/ha. Sulfate-S in forest and coffee throughfall was higher or similar to bulk S deposition measured in clearings. Throughfall Cl- inputs, however, were consistently higher than Cl- amounts deposited to cleared areas, with net Cl- fluxes enhanced in evergreen coffee relative to semi-deciduous forest plots. Compared to bulk nitrate-N deposition, forest and coffee canopies retained 1-4 kg NO(3-)-N/ha annually, reducing NO(3-)-N inputs to soils. Overall, throughfall fluxes were similar to values reported for Neotropical sites influenced by anthropogenic emissions, while bulk S and N deposition were nine- and eightfold greater, respectively, than background wet deposition rates for remote tropical areas. Our results demonstrate that land-cover type significantly alters the magnitude and spatial distribution of atmospheric inputs to tropical ecosystems, primarily through canopy-induced changes in fog and dry deposition. However, we found that land cover interacts with topography and climate in significant ways to produce spatially heterogeneous patterns of anion fluxes, and that these factors can converge to create deposition hotspots

  16. Matrix Intensification Affects Body and Physiological Condition of Tropical Forest-Dependent Passerines

    PubMed Central

    Deikumah, Justus P.; McAlpine, Clive A.; Maron, Martine

    2015-01-01

    Matrix land-use intensification is a relatively recent and novel landscape change that can have important influences on the biota within adjacent habitat patches. While there are immediate local changes that it brings about, the influences on individual animals occupying adjacent habitats may be less evident initially. High-intensity land use could induce chronic stress in individuals in nearby remnants, leading ultimately to population declines. We investigated how physiological indicators and body condition measures of tropical forest-dependent birds differ between forest adjacent to surface mining sites and that near farmlands at two distances from remnant edge in southwest Ghana. We used mixed effects models of several condition indices including residual body mass and heterophil to lymphocyte (H/L) ratios (an indicator of elevated chronic stress) to explore the effect of matrix intensity on forest-dependent passerines classed as either sedentary area-sensitive habitat specialists or nomadic generalists. Individual birds occupying tropical forest remnants near surface mining sites were in poorer condition, as indicated by lower residual body mass and elevated chronic stress, compared to those in remnants near agricultural lands. The condition of the sedentary forest habitat specialists white-tailed alethe, Alethe diademata and western olive sunbird, Cyanomitra obscura was most negatively affected by high-intensity surface mining land-use adjacent to remnants, whereas generalist species were not affected. Land use intensification may set in train a new trajectory of faunal relaxation beyond that expected based on habitat loss alone. Patterns of individual condition may be useful in identifying habitats where species population declines may occur before faunal relaxation has concluded. PMID:26107179

  17. Matrix Intensification Affects Body and Physiological Condition of Tropical Forest-Dependent Passerines.

    PubMed

    Deikumah, Justus P; McAlpine, Clive A; Maron, Martine

    2015-01-01

    Matrix land-use intensification is a relatively recent and novel landscape change that can have important influences on the biota within adjacent habitat patches. While there are immediate local changes that it brings about, the influences on individual animals occupying adjacent habitats may be less evident initially. High-intensity land use could induce chronic stress in individuals in nearby remnants, leading ultimately to population declines. We investigated how physiological indicators and body condition measures of tropical forest-dependent birds differ between forest adjacent to surface mining sites and that near farmlands at two distances from remnant edge in southwest Ghana. We used mixed effects models of several condition indices including residual body mass and heterophil to lymphocyte (H/L) ratios (an indicator of elevated chronic stress) to explore the effect of matrix intensity on forest-dependent passerines classed as either sedentary area-sensitive habitat specialists or nomadic generalists. Individual birds occupying tropical forest remnants near surface mining sites were in poorer condition, as indicated by lower residual body mass and elevated chronic stress, compared to those in remnants near agricultural lands. The condition of the sedentary forest habitat specialists white-tailed alethe, Alethe diademata and western olive sunbird, Cyanomitra obscura was most negatively affected by high-intensity surface mining land-use adjacent to remnants, whereas generalist species were not affected. Land use intensification may set in train a new trajectory of faunal relaxation beyond that expected based on habitat loss alone. Patterns of individual condition may be useful in identifying habitats where species population declines may occur before faunal relaxation has concluded.

  18. Tree species diversity affects decomposition through modified micro-environmental conditions across European forests.

    PubMed

    Joly, François-Xavier; Milcu, Alexandru; Scherer-Lorenzen, Michael; Jean, Loreline-Katia; Bussotti, Filippo; Dawud, Seid Muhie; Müller, Sandra; Pollastrini, Martina; Raulund-Rasmussen, Karsten; Vesterdal, Lars; Hättenschwiler, Stephan

    2017-02-09

    Different tree species influence litter decomposition directly through species-specific litter traits, and indirectly through distinct modifications of the local decomposition environment. Whether these indirect effects on decomposition are influenced by tree species diversity is presently not clear. We addressed this question by studying the decomposition of two common substrates, cellulose paper and wood sticks, in a total of 209 forest stands of varying tree species diversity across six major forest types at the scale of Europe. Tree species richness showed a weak but positive correlation with the decomposition of cellulose but not with that of wood. Surprisingly, macroclimate had only a minor effect on cellulose decomposition and no effect on wood decomposition despite the wide range in climatic conditions among sites from Mediterranean to boreal forests. Instead, forest canopy density and stand-specific litter traits affected the decomposition of both substrates, with a particularly clear negative effect of the proportion of evergreen tree litter. Our study suggests that species richness and composition of tree canopies modify decomposition indirectly through changes in microenvironmental conditions. These canopy-induced differences in the local decomposition environment control decomposition to a greater extent than continental-scale differences in macroclimatic conditions.

  19. Monitoring the condition of the Canadian forest environment: The relevance of the concept of 'ecological indicators'.

    PubMed

    Kimmins, J P

    1990-11-01

    The Canadian forest environment is characterized by high spatial and temporal variability, especially in the west. Our forests vary according to climate, landform, and surficial geology, and according to the type, intensity, extent of, and the time since the last disturbance. Most Canadian forests have had a history of repeated acute, episodic disturbance from fire, insects, wind, diseases and/or logging, with a frequency of disturbance varying from a few decades to many centuries. These sources of variability have resulted in a complex and continually changing mosaic of forest conditions and stages of successional development.Monitoring the 'quality' of this dynamic forested landscape mosaic is extremely difficult, and in most cases the concept of a relatively simple index of forest ecosystem quality or condition (i.e. an 'ecological indicator') is probably inappropriate. Such ecological indicators are better suited for monitoring chronic anthropogenically induced disturbances that are continuous in their effect (e.g. 'acid rain', heavy metal pollution, air pollution, and the 'greenhouse effect') in ecosystems that, in the absence of such chronic disturbance, exhibit very slow directional change (e.g. lakes, higher order streams and rivers). Monitoring the effects of a chronic anthropogenic disturbance to forest ecosystems to determine if it is resulting in a sustained, directional alteration of environmental 'quality' will require a definition of the expected pattern of episodic disturbance and recovery therefrom (i.e. patterns of secondary succession in the absence of the chronic disturbance). Only when we have such a 'temporal fingerprint' of forest ecosystem condition for 'normal' patterns of disturbance and recovery can we determine if the ecosystem condition is being degraded by chronic human-induced alteration of the environment. Thus, degradation is assessed in terms of deviations from the expected temporal pattern of conditions rather than in terms of an

  20. Birds on islands in the sky: Origin of the montane avifauna of Northern Melanesia.

    PubMed

    Mayr, E; Diamond, J M

    1976-05-01

    Biogeographers have long been fascinated by the disjunct distributions of species stranded on mountaintops. This paper analyzes, for the montane bird populations of Northern Melanesian islands, how many such populations there are, why they are restricted to mountains, and how they dispersed to mountains. The number of populations increases with island elevation and with montane area, and decreases with lowland area, exemplifying the problem of continental species diversity. Most species with montane populations on some island(s) have sea-level populations on some other island(s). These altitudinal niche shifts can be variously related to interisland differences either in altitudinal distribution of area or else in competitive pressure in the lowlands or mountains. Restriction of Northern Melanesian bird populations to mountains is more often due to lowland competitors than to inability to survive under the physical conditions of the lowlands. Of four possible mechanisms for the origin of a montane population (referred to as jumping, land-bridge crossing, trickling, and push-pull shifts), only the first and last have been significant for Northern Melanesian birds.

  1. Birds on islands in the sky: Origin of the montane avifauna of Northern Melanesia

    PubMed Central

    Mayr, Ernst; Diamond, Jared M.

    1976-01-01

    Biogeographers have long been fascinated by the disjunct distributions of species stranded on mountaintops. This paper analyzes, for the montane bird populations of Northern Melanesian islands, how many such populations there are, why they are restricted to mountains, and how they dispersed to mountains. The number of populations increases with island elevation and with montane area, and decreases with lowland area, exemplifying the problem of continental species diversity. Most species with montane populations on some island(s) have sea-level populations on some other island(s). These altitudinal niche shifts can be variously related to interisland differences either in altitudinal distribution of area or else in competitive pressure in the lowlands or mountains. Restriction of Northern Melanesian bird populations to mountains is more often due to lowland competitors than to inability to survive under the physical conditions of the lowlands. Of four possible mechanisms for the origin of a montane population (referred to as jumping, land-bridge crossing, trickling, and push-pull shifts), only the first and last have been significant for Northern Melanesian birds. PMID:16592319

  2. Parent material, vegetation or slope position - which soil-forming factor controls the intensity of podzolization process in the soils of the Sudety Mountains montane zone?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Musielok, Łukasz

    2016-04-01

    Climatic conditions, parent material and vegetation type are considered to be the main soil-forming factors controlling podzolization process advancement. Moreover, in hilly and mountainous areas properties of soils that are undergoing podzolization process are influenced significantly by its location on a slope, due to lateral translocation of soil solutions. The Sudety Mts. are a medium-high mountain range characterized by geological mosaic with many different sedimentary, igneous and metamorphic rocks, mostly poor in alkali elements. Most of the Sudety Mts. area lies in a lower montane zone, where the dominant natural vegetation were temperate mixed and deciduous forests. However, since 18th century natural vegetation was significantly transformed by widespread introduction of spruce monocultures. These distinguishing features of the Sudety Mts. natural environment are considered to be responsible for prevalence of podzolized soil in this area, however the intensity of podzolization process is very differentiated. The aim of presented research was to determine the influence of varying parent material, different vegetation types and different slope positions the on the soil properties variability, and thus, to answer the question which of the analyzed soil-forming factors is controlling the podzolization process advancement in the Sudety Mountains montane zone? Data from A, E, Bs and C horizons of 16 soil profiles developed from different parent materials (granite, sandstone, andesites and mica schists), located under various types of vegetation (spruce and beech forests) and in different slope positions (upper, middle and lower parts of the slopes) were taken into the analysis. All analyzed soil profiles were located in lower montane zone between 550 and 950 m a. s. l. to avoid the influence of varying climatic conditions. One-way ANOVA and Principal Components Analysis (PCA) were used to analyze differentiation of soil texture, pH, organic carbon and nitrogen

  3. Climate change reverses the competitive balance of ash and beech seedlings under simulated forest conditions.

    PubMed

    Saxe, H; Kerstiens, G

    2005-07-01

    This study identifies the important role of climate change and photosynthetic photon flux density (PPFD) in the regenerative competence of ash and beech seedlings in 12 inter- and intra-specific competition designs in simulated mixed ash-beech forest gaps under conditions of non-limiting soil volume, water and nutrient supply. The growth conditions simulated natural forest conditions as closely as possible. Simulations were performed by growing interacting seedling canopies for one season in temperature-regulated closed-top chambers (CTCs). Eight CTCs were used in a factorial design with replicate treatments of [CO2] x temperature x PPFD x competition design. [CO2] tracked ambient levels or was 360 micromol mol-1 higher. Temperature tracked ambient levels or was 2.8 degrees C higher. PPFD on two plant tables inside each CTC was 16% and 5% of open-field levels, respectively, representative of typical light flux levels in a natural forest gap. In several of the competition designs, climate change made the ash seedlings grow taller than the beech seedlings and, at the same time, attain a larger leaf area and a larger total biomass. Advantages of this type for ash were found particularly at lower PPFD. There was a positive synergistic interaction of elevated temperature x [CO2] for both species, but more so for ash. There are many uncertainties when a study of chambered seedlings is to be projected to real changes in natural forests. Nevertheless, this study supports a possible future shift towards ash in north European, unmanaged, mixed ash-beech forests in response to the predicted climate change.

  4. Reliability of differing densities of sample grids used for the monitoring of forest condition in Europe.

    PubMed

    Köhl, M; Innes, J L; Kaufmann, E

    1994-02-01

    Concern about the possible deterioration of forest health led to the establishment in the 1980s of inventories of forest condition throughout Europe. International standardisation of the programmes was sought and a number of recommendations were made concerning sampling and assessment procedures. One of the most important rulings was that the assessment should be made on a systematic grid, the minimum density of which was 16×16 km. However, many countries adopted denser sampling grids, with 4×4 km being used in several countries and 1×1 km being used in the Netherlands. With five or more years of monitoring completed, there is a growing belief that a rapid and irreversible decline in forest health is not occurring. Consequently, some countries/regions are seeking to reduce their annual investment in forest health monitoring.The precision of national/regional estimates of forest health can be directly related to the sample size. As the sample size decreases, so also does the precision of the estimates. This is illustrated using data collected in Switzerland in 1992 and using grid densities of 4×4 km, 8×8 km, 12×12 km and 16×16 km. The value of the data is dependent on the sample size and the degree to which it is broken down (by region or species). The loss of precision associated with most subdivisions at the 8×8 km grid level remains acceptable, but a sharp deterioration in the precision occurs at the 12×12 km and 16×16 km grid levels. This has considerable implications for the interpretation of the inventories from those countries using a 16×16 km grid. In Switzerland, a reduction from the current 4×4 km grid to an 8×8 km grid (i.e. 75% reduction in sample size) would have relatively little impact on the overall results from the annual inventories of forest health.

  5. A new tropical montane firefly genus and species, active during winter and endemic to the southeastern Atlantic Rainforest (Coleoptera: Lampyridae).

    PubMed

    Silveira, Luiz Felipe Lima DA; Mermudes, José Ricardo Miras

    2017-01-17

    Here we describe Araucariocladus hiems gen. et sp. nov. (Lampyridae: Amydetinae), a firefly species endemic to high montane forests, and occurring during June, a relatively cool and dry month in the Southeastern Atlantic Rainforest of Brazil. We tentatively place it in Psilocladina McDermott, and discuss the limitations of its classification. We also provide illustrations of key structural features of the new taxa and discuss its affinities.

  6. [Effects of topographical condition and sampling number on the interpolation precision of forest litter carbon density].

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jia-jia; Fu, Wei-jun; Du, Qun; Zhang, Guo-jiang; Jiang, Pei-kun

    2013-08-01

    The territory of Zhejiang Province, East China was grouped into 3 topographical units (plain-coastal area, hill-basin area, and mountain area) to investigate the effects of topographical condition and sampling number on the Kriging interpolation precision of forest litter carbon density in the Province. The forest litter carbon density in the 3 topographical units showed a medium spatial correlation pattern, with the semi-variance nugget/sill ratio value ranged from 28.3% to 72.4%. The Kriging interpolation precision was in the order of plain-coastal area > hill-basin area > mountain area, indicating that the Kriging interpolation precision decreased with the increase of terrain complexity degree. Within the same topographical units, the Kriging interpolation precision improved with increasing sampling number, being most obvious in the mountain area. Therefore, under complicated topographical conditions, greater sampling number was required to achieve a high precision of Kriging interpolation.

  7. Microbial diversity during cellulose decomposition in different forest stands: I. microbial communities and environmental conditions.

    PubMed

    Kubartová, Ariana; Moukoumi, Judicaël; Béguiristain, Thierry; Ranger, Jacques; Berthelin, Jacques

    2007-10-01

    We studied the effect of forest tree species on a community of decomposers that colonize cellulose strips. Both fungal and bacterial communities were targeted in a native forest dominated by beech and oak and 30-year-old beech and spruce plantations, growing in similar ecological conditions in the Breuil-Chenue experimental forest site in Morvan (France). Microbial ingrowths from the 3rd to 10th month of strip decomposition (May to December 2004) were studied. Community composition was assessed using temperature gradient gel electrophoresis with universal fungal (ITS1F, ITS2) and bacterial (1401r, 968f) primers. Soil temperature and moisture as well as fungal biomass were also measured to give additional information on decomposition processes. Changing the dominant tree species had no significant influence in the number of decomposer species. However, decomposer community composition was clearly different. If compared to the native forest, where community composition highly differed, young monocultures displayed similar species structure for fungi and bacteria. Both species numbers and community composition evolved during the decay process. Time effect was found to be more important than tree species. Nevertheless, the actual environmental conditions and seasonal effect seemed to be even more determining factors for the development of microbial communities. The course and correlations of the explored variables often differed between tree species, although certain general trends were identified. Fungal biomass was high in summer, despite that species richness (SR) decreased and conversely, that high SR did not necessarily mean high biomass values. It can be concluded that the growth and development of the microbiological communities that colonized a model material in situ depended on the combination of physical and biological factors acting collectively and interdependently at the forest soil microsite.

  8. Associations of Forest Type, Parasitism and Body Condition of Two European Passerines, Fringilla coelebs and Sylvia atricapilla

    PubMed Central

    Lüdtke, Bruntje; Moser, Isabelle; Santiago-Alarcon, Diego; Fischer, Markus; Kalko, Elisabeth KV.; Schaefer, H. Martin; Suarez-Rubio, Marcela; Tschapka, Marco; Renner, Swen C.

    2013-01-01

    Human-induced forest modification can alter parasite-host interactions and might change the persistence of host populations. We captured individuals of two widespread European passerines (Fringilla coelebs and Sylvia atricapilla) in southwestern Germany to disentangle the associations of forest types and parasitism by haemosporidian parasites on the body condition of birds. We compared parasite prevalence and parasite intensity, fluctuating asymmetries, leukocyte numbers, and the heterophil to lymphocyte ratio (H/L-ratio) among individuals from beech, mixed-deciduous and spruce forest stands. Based on the biology of bird species, we expected to find fewer infected individuals in beech or mixed-deciduous than in spruce forest stands. We found the highest parasite prevalence and intensity in beech forests for F. coelebs. Although, we found the highest prevalence in spruce forests for S. atricapilla, the highest intensity was detected in beech forests, partially supporting our hypothesis. Other body condition or health status metrics, such as the heterophil to lymphocyte ratio (H/L-ratio), revealed only slight differences between bird populations inhabiting the three different forest types, with the highest values in spruce for F. coelebs and in mixed-deciduous forests for S. atricapilla. A comparison of parasitized versus non-parasitized individuals suggests that parasite infection increased the immune response of a bird, which was detectable as high H/L-ratio. Higher infections with blood parasites for S. atricapilla in spruce forest indicate that this forest type might be a less suitable habitat than beech and mixed-deciduous forests, whereas beech forests seem to be a suboptimal habitat regarding parasitism for F. coelebs. PMID:24339923

  9. How Socio-Economic Conditions Influence Forest Policy Development in Central and South-East Europe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vuletić, Dijana; Potočić, Nenad; Krajter, Silvija; Seletković, Ivan; Fürst, Christine; Makeschin, Franz; Galić, Zoran; Lorz, Carsten; Matijašič, Dragan; Zupanič, Matjaž; Simončič, Primož; Vacik, Harald

    2010-12-01

    In this article, several findings on socio-economic conditions derived from national reports and a web-based questionnaire are discussed and related to the changing role of forestry and the future forest policy development. A number of Central and South-eastern European countries taking part in a SEE-ERA-NET project ReForMan project ( www.reforman.de ) participated in data acquisition: Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Germany, Serbia and Slovenia. The aim of the research was to illustrate the present structure of forestry sector, as well as investigate newly emerging topics in forestry of Central and South-eastern Europe. The results indicated certain patterns in attitudes and perceptions among stakeholders that can be related to socio-economic conditions defined for each country. Clear differences between member and non-member countries exist only in level of implementation of EU legislation. Results showed consensus on main threats to the forests among all countries, but also some country specifics in perceptions of factors influencing forestry, their importance and professional competencies. These results could be additionally explained by influence of historical conditions which shaped development of forest sector in SEE region especially in its organizational dimension as well as in perceived role of forestry expressed through recognition of main forest functions. The influence of European forest policy processes in the region is evident through adaptation of EU legislation and perceived implications of international processes on national levels. Based on this observation, two possible options for future development of the forestry sector can be foreseen: (i) focusing on the productive function of forests and fostering its' sustainable use; or (ii) putting an emphasis on environmental and social issues. In both cases supporting public

  10. Elevational Ranges of Montane Birds and Deforestation in the Western Andes of Colombia.

    PubMed

    Ocampo-Peñuela, Natalia; Pimm, Stuart L

    2015-01-01

    Deforestation causes habitat loss, fragmentation, degradation, and can ultimately cause extinction of the remnant species. Tropical montane birds face these threats with the added natural vulnerability of narrower elevational ranges and higher specialization than lowland species. Recent studies assess the impact of present and future global climate change on species' ranges, but only a few of these evaluate the potentially confounding effect of lowland deforestation on species elevational distributions. In the Western Andes of Colombia, an important biodiversity hotspot, we evaluated the effects of deforestation on the elevational ranges of montane birds along altitudinal transects. Using point counts and mist-nets, we surveyed six altitudinal transects spanning 2200 to 2800 m. Three transects were forested from 2200 to 2800 m, and three were partially deforested with forest cover only above 2400 m. We compared abundance-weighted mean elevation, minimum elevation, and elevational range width. In addition to analysing the effect of deforestation on 134 species, we tested its impact within trophic guilds and habitat preference groups. Abundance-weighted mean and minimum elevations were not significantly different between forested and partially deforested transects. Range width was marginally different: as expected, ranges were larger in forested transects. Species in different trophic guilds and habitat preference categories showed different trends. These results suggest that deforestation may affect species' elevational ranges, even within the forest that remains. Climate change will likely exacerbate harmful impacts of deforestation on species' elevational distributions. Future conservation strategies need to account for this by protecting connected forest tracts across a wide range of elevations.

  11. Elevational Ranges of Montane Birds and Deforestation in the Western Andes of Colombia

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Deforestation causes habitat loss, fragmentation, degradation, and can ultimately cause extinction of the remnant species. Tropical montane birds face these threats with the added natural vulnerability of narrower elevational ranges and higher specialization than lowland species. Recent studies assess the impact of present and future global climate change on species’ ranges, but only a few of these evaluate the potentially confounding effect of lowland deforestation on species elevational distributions. In the Western Andes of Colombia, an important biodiversity hotspot, we evaluated the effects of deforestation on the elevational ranges of montane birds along altitudinal transects. Using point counts and mist-nets, we surveyed six altitudinal transects spanning 2200 to 2800m. Three transects were forested from 2200 to 2800m, and three were partially deforested with forest cover only above 2400m. We compared abundance-weighted mean elevation, minimum elevation, and elevational range width. In addition to analysing the effect of deforestation on 134 species, we tested its impact within trophic guilds and habitat preference groups. Abundance-weighted mean and minimum elevations were not significantly different between forested and partially deforested transects. Range width was marginally different: as expected, ranges were larger in forested transects. Species in different trophic guilds and habitat preference categories showed different trends. These results suggest that deforestation may affect species’ elevational ranges, even within the forest that remains. Climate change will likely exacerbate harmful impacts of deforestation on species’ elevational distributions. Future conservation strategies need to account for this by protecting connected forest tracts across a wide range of elevations. PMID:26641477

  12. Forest fires in the insular Caribbean.

    PubMed

    Robbins, A Marcus J; Eckelmann, Claus-Martin; Quiñones, Maya

    2008-12-01

    This paper presents a summary of the forest fire reports in the insular Caribbean derived from both management reports and an analysis of publicly available Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectrodiometer (MODIS) satellite active fire products from the region. A vast difference between the amount of fires reported by land managers and fire points in the MODIS Fire Information for Resource Management System data can be observed. Future research is recommended to better understand the nature of these differences. While there is a general lack of available statistical data on forest fires in the Caribbean, a few general observations can be made: Forest fires occur mainly in dry forest types (500 to 1000 mm of mean annual rainfall). These are also the areas where most human settlements are located. Lowland high forests and montane forests with higher rainfall (1000 and more mm y(-1)) are less susceptible to forest fire, but they can burn in exceptionally dry years. Most of the dry forest ecosystems in the Caribbean can be considered to be fire-sensitive ecosystems, while the pine forests in the Caribbean (Cuba, Dominican Republic, and the Bahamas) are maintained by wildfires. In fire-sensitive ecosystems, uncontrolled burning often encourages the spread of alien invasive species. A Caribbean Fire Management Cooperation Strategy was developed between 2005 and 2006 under auspices of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. This regional strategy aims to strengthen Caribbean fire management networking by encouraging closer collaboration among countries with similar ecological conditions. The strategy for the Caribbean identifies a number of research, training, and management activities to improve wildfire management capacity in the Caribbean.

  13. Climate phase drives canopy condition in a large semi-arid floodplain forest.

    PubMed

    Wen, Li; Saintilan, Neil

    2015-08-15

    To maintain and restore the ecological integrity of floodplains, allocating water for environmental benefits (i.e. environmental water) is widely practised globally. To efficiently manage the always limited environmental water, there is pressing need to advance our understanding of the ecological response to long-term climate cycles as evidence grows of intensification of extreme climatic events such as severe drought and heat waves. In this study, we assessed the alleviating effects of artificial flooding on drought impact using the canopy condition of the iconic river red gum forests in Australia's Murray Darling Basin (MDB). To achieve this, we jointly analysed spatial-temporal patterns of NDVI response and drought conditions for the period of 2000-2013, during which the MDB experienced an extreme dry-wet cycle. Our results indicated that while NDVI-derived canopy condition was better at the sites receiving environmental water during the dry phases, both watered and unwatered sites displayed great similarity in seasonality and trends. Furthermore, we did not find any significant difference in NDVI response of the canopy between the sites to suggest significant differences in ecosystem stability and resilience, with watered and unwatered sites showing similar responses to the extreme wet conditions as the drought broke. The highly significant relationship between long-term drought index and NDVI anomaly suggest that climate phase is the main forcing driving canopy condition in semi-arid floodplain forests.

  14. Identifying the location of fire refuges in wet forest ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Berry, Laurence E; Driscoll, Don A; Stein, John A; Blanchard, Wade; Banks, Sam C; Bradstock, Ross A; Lindenmayer, David B

    2015-12-01

    The increasing frequency of large, high-severity fires threatens the survival of old-growth specialist fauna in fire-prone forests. Within topographically diverse montane forests, areas that experience less severe or fewer fires compared with those prevailing in the landscape may present unique resource opportunities enabling old-growth specialist fauna to survive. Statistical landscape models that identify the extent and distribution of potential fire refuges may assist land managers to incorporate these areas into relevant biodiversity conservation strategies. We used a case study in an Australian wet montane forest to establish how predictive fire simulation models can be interpreted as management tools to identify potential fire refuges. We examined the relationship between the probability of fire refuge occurrence as predicted by an existing fire refuge model and fire severity experienced during a large wildfire. We also examined the extent to which local fire severity was influenced by fire severity in the surrounding landscape. We used a combination of statistical approaches, including generalized linear modeling, variogram analysis, and receiver operating characteristics and area under the curve analysis (ROC AUC). We found that the amount of unburned habitat and the factors influencing the retention and location of fire refuges varied with fire conditions. Under extreme fire conditions, the distribution of fire refuges was limited to only extremely sheltered, fire-resistant regions of the landscape. During extreme fire conditions, fire severity patterns were largely determined by stochastic factors that could not be predicted by the model. When fire conditions were moderate, physical landscape properties appeared to mediate fire severity distribution. Our study demonstrates that land managers can employ predictive landscape fire models to identify the broader climatic and spatial domain within which fire refuges are likely to be present. It is essential

  15. Carbon and Nitrogen dynamics in forest soils depending on light conditions and tree species

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Veselinovic, Bojana; Hager, Herbert

    2013-04-01

    Climate change mitigation actions under the Kyoto Protocol apply among other decreases of CO2-emissions and/or increases of carbon (C) stocks. As soils represent the second biggest C-reservoir on Earth, an exact estimation of the stocks and reliable knowledge on C-dynamics in forest soils is of high importance. Anyhow, here, the accurate GHG-accounting, emission reductions and increase in C stocks is hampered due to lack of reliable data and solid statistical methods for the factors which influence C-sequestration in and its release from these systems. In spite of good progress in the scientific research, these factors are numerous and diverse in their interactions. This work focuses on influence of the economically relevant tree species - Picea abies, Fagus sylvatica and Quercus spp. - and light conditions on forest floor and mineral soil C and N dynamics in forest soils. Spruce monocultures have been widely used management practices in central European forests during the past century. Such stands are in lower altitudes and on heavy and water logged soils unstable and prone to disturbances, especially to windthrows. We hypothesize that windthrow areas loose C & N and that the establishment of the previous nutrient stocks is, if at all, only possible to be reached over the longer periods of time. We research also how the increased OM depletion affects the change of C & N stocks in forest floor vs. mineral soil. Conversion of such secondary spruce monocultures to site adequate beech and oak forests may enable higher stocks allocated predominantly as stable organic carbon and as plant available nitrogen. For this purpose sites at 300-700 m altitude with planosols were chosen in the region of the Northern Alpine Foothills. A false chronosequence approach was used in order to evaluate the impacts of the tree species and change in light conditions on dynamic of C & N in the forest floor and mineral soil, over the period 0-100 (for oak 120 y.) years. The C- and N

  16. Evaluating a new method for reconstructing forest conditions from General Land Office survey records.

    PubMed

    Levine, Carrie R; Cogbill, Charles V; Collins, Brandon M; Larson, Andrew J; Lutz, James A; North, Malcolm P; Restaino, Christina M; Safford, Hugh D; Stephens, Scott L; Battles, John J

    2017-03-28

    Historical forest conditions are often used to inform contemporary management goals because historical forests are considered to be resilient to ecological disturbances. The General Land Office (GLO) surveys of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries provide regionally quasi-contiguous datasets of historical forests across much of the Western United States. Multiple methods exist for estimating tree density from point-based sampling such as the GLO surveys, including distance-based and area-based approaches. Area-based approaches have been applied in California mixed-conifer forests but their estimates have not been validated. To assess the accuracy and precision of plotless density estimators with potential for application to GLO data in this region, we imposed a GLO sampling scheme on six mapped forest stands of known densities (159-784 trees ha(-1) ) in the Sierra Nevada in California, US, and Baja California Norte, Mexico. We compared three distance-based plotless density estimators (Cottam, Pollard, and Morisita) as well as two Voronoi area (VA) estimators - the Delincé and mean harmonic Voronoi density (MHVD) - to the true densities. We simulated sampling schemes of increasing intensity to assess sampling error. The relative error (RE) of density estimates for the GLO sampling scheme ranged from 0.36 to 4.78. The least biased estimate of tree density in every stand was obtained with the Morisita estimator and the most biased was obtained with the MHVD estimator. The MHVD estimates of tree density were 1.2-to-3.8 times larger than the true densities and performed best in stands subject to fire exclusion for 100 years. The Delincé approach obtained accurate estimates of density, implying that the Voronoi approach is theoretically sound but that its application in the MHVD was flawed. The misapplication was attributed to two causes: 1) the use of a crown scaling factor that does not correct for the number of trees sampled; and 2) the persistent

  17. Using digital photography to examine grazing in montane meadows

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McIlroy, Susan K.; Allen-Diaz, Barbara H.; Berg, Alexander C.

    2011-01-01

    Cattle (Bos taurus) numbers on national forests are allocated based on allotment grazing capacity, but spatial patterns of timing and density at smaller scales are difficult to assess. However, it is often in meadows or riparian areas that grazing may affect hydrology, biodiversity, and other important ecosystem characteristics. To explore real-time animal presence in montane meadows we distributed 18 digital cameras across nine sites in the Sierra National Forest, California. Our objectives were to document seasonal and diurnal presence of both cattle and mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus), identify the effects of three fencing treatments on animal distribution, and test digital photography as a tool for documenting cattle presence. We recorded 409 399 images during daylight hours for two grazing seasons, and we identified 5 084 and 24 482 cattle "marks" (instances of animal occurrence) in 2006 and 2007, respectively. Deer presence was much lower, with 331 marks in 2006 and 598 in 2007. Morning cattle presence was highest before 0800 hours both years (13.7% and 15.4% of total marks for 2006 and 2007, respectively). Marks decreased until 1100 hours and then increased around 1400 hours and remained relatively stable until 1900 hours. Marks then rose precipitously, with >20% of total marks recorded after 1900 hours both years. Deer presence was less than 10% per hour until 1800 hours, when >20% of total marks were recorded after this time both years. Among treatments, cattle marks were highest outside fences at partially fenced meadows, and deer were highest within completely fenced meadows. Our experience suggests that cameras are not viable tools for meadow monitoring due to variation captured within meadows and the time and effort involved in image processing and review.

  18. Influence of climatic variables, forest type, and condition on activity patterns of Geoffroyi's spider monkeys throughout Mesoamerica.

    PubMed

    González-Zamora, Arturo; Arroyo-Rodríguez, Víctor; Chaves, Oscar M; Sánchez-López, Sónia; Aureli, Filippo; Stoner, Kathryn E

    2011-12-01

    Understanding how species cope with variations in climatic conditions, forest types and habitat amount is a fundamental challenge for ecologists and conservation biologists. We used data from 18 communities of Mesoamerican spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi) throughout their range to determine whether their activity patterns are affected by climatic variables (temperature and rainfall), forest types (seasonal and nonseasonal forests), and forest condition (continuous and fragmented). Data were derived from 15 published and unpublished studies carried out in four countries (Mexico, El Salvador, Costa Rica, and Panama), cumulatively representing more than 18 years (221 months, >3,645 hr) of behavioral observations. Overall, A. geoffroyi spent most of their time feeding (38.4 ± 14.0%, mean ± SD) and resting (36.6 ± 12.8%) and less time traveling (19.8 ± 11.3%). Resting and feeding were mainly affected by rainfall: resting time increased with decreasing rainfall, whereas feeding time increased with rainfall. Traveling time was negatively related to both rainfall and maximum temperature. In addition, both resting and traveling time were higher in seasonal forests (tropical dry forest and tropical moist forest) than in nonseasonal forests (tropical wet forest), but feeding time followed the opposite pattern. Furthermore, spider monkeys spent more time feeding and less time resting (i.e., higher feeding effort) in forest fragments than in continuous forest. These findings suggest that global climate changes and habitat deforestation and fragmentation in Mesoamerica will threaten the survival of spider monkeys and reduce the distributional range of the species in the coming decades.

  19. Tertiary montane origin of the Central Asian flora, evidence inferred from cpDNA sequences of Atraphaxis (Polygonaceae).

    PubMed

    Zhang, Ming-Li; Sanderson, Stewart C; Sun, Yan-Xia; Byalt, Vyacheslav V; Hao, Xiao-Li

    2014-12-01

    Atraphaxis has approximately 25 species and a distribution center in Central Asia. It has been previously used to hypothesize an origin from montane forest. We sampled 18 species covering three sections within the genus and sequenced five cpDNA spacers, atpB-rbcL, psbK-psbI, psbA-trnH, rbcL, and trnL-trnF. BEAST was used to reconstruct phylogenetic relationship and time divergences, and S-DIVA and Lagrange were used, based on distribution area and ecotype data, for reconstruction of ancestral areas and events. Our results appear compatible with designation of three taxonomic sections within the genus. The generic stem and crown ages were Eocene, approximately 47 Ma, and Oligocene 27 Ma, respectively. The origin of Atraphaxis is confirmed as montane, with an ancestral area consisting of the Junggar Basin and uplands of the Pamir-Tianshan-Alatau-Altai mountain chains, and ancestral ecotype of montane forest. Two remarkable paleogeographic events, shrinkage of the inland Paratethys Sea at the boundary of the late Oligocene and early Miocene, and the time intervals of cooling and drying of global climate from 24 (22) Ma onward likely facilitated early diversification of Atraphaxis, while rapid uplift of the Tianshan Mountains during the late Miocene may have promoted later diversification.

  20. Region and site conditions affect phenotypic trait variation in five forest herbs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lemke, Isgard Holle; Kolb, Annette; Diekmann, Martin Reemt

    2012-02-01

    Phenotypic plasticity is the ability of organisms to express different phenotypes under different environmental conditions. It may buffer individuals both against short-term environmental fluctuations and long-term effects of global change. A plastic behaviour in response to changes in the environment may be especially important in species with low migration rates and colonization capacities, such as in many forest plants in present-day fragmented landscapes. We compared the phenotypic trait variation (used as a proxy for the amount of phenotypic plasticity) of five forest herbs (Brachypodium sylvaticum, Circaea lutetiana, Impatiens noli-tangere, Sanicula europaea and Stachys sylvatica) between two regions in Germany that differ in their overall environmental conditions (Bremen in the northwest, Freiburg in the southwest; 5 species × 2 regions × 8-15 populations × 25-50 individuals). In addition, we measured light intensity and important soil parameters (soil pH, moisture, K, P and N) in all populations. We found consistent differences in trait variability between the two regions in several species. In Brachypodium and Stachys both vegetative and reproductive traits were more variable in Freiburg. Similarly, reproductive traits of Impatiens and Sanicula appeared to be more variable in Freiburg, while in both species at least one of the vegetative traits was more variable in Bremen. Mean local environmental conditions also affected trait variation; in most of the species both vegetative and reproductive traits were more variable in sites with higher nutrient contents and higher light availability. Across all traits and both regions, seed or fruit production was most variable. In summary, at least some of the studied forest herbs appear to respond strongly to large-scale environmental differences, showing a higher trait variability in the more southern region. Given the assumption that phenotypic trait variation is positively associated with phenotypic plasticity

  1. Forest Structure in Low-Diversity Tropical Forests: A Study of Hawaiian Wet and Dry Forests

    PubMed Central

    Ostertag, Rebecca; Inman-Narahari, Faith; Cordell, Susan; Giardina, Christian P.; Sack, Lawren

    2014-01-01

    The potential influence of diversity on ecosystem structure and function remains a topic of significant debate, especially for tropical forests where diversity can range widely. We used Center for Tropical Forest Science (CTFS) methodology to establish forest dynamics plots in montane wet forest and lowland dry forest on Hawai‘i Island. We compared the species diversity, tree density, basal area, biomass, and size class distributions between the two forest types. We then examined these variables across tropical forests within the CTFS network. Consistent with other island forests, the Hawai‘i forests were characterized by low species richness and very high relative dominance. The two Hawai‘i forests were floristically distinct, yet similar in species richness (15 vs. 21 species) and stem density (3078 vs. 3486/ha). While these forests were selected for their low invasive species cover relative to surrounding forests, both forests averaged 5–>50% invasive species cover; ongoing removal will be necessary to reduce or prevent competitive impacts, especially from woody species. The montane wet forest had much larger trees, resulting in eightfold higher basal area and above-ground biomass. Across the CTFS network, the Hawaiian montane wet forest was similar to other tropical forests with respect to diameter distributions, density, and aboveground biomass, while the Hawai‘i lowland dry forest was similar in density to tropical forests with much higher diversity. These findings suggest that forest structural variables can be similar across tropical forests independently of species richness. The inclusion of low-diversity Pacific Island forests in the CTFS network provides an ∼80-fold range in species richness (15–1182 species), six-fold variation in mean annual rainfall (835–5272 mm yr−1) and 1.8-fold variation in mean annual temperature (16.0–28.4°C). Thus, the Hawaiian forest plots expand the global forest plot network to enable testing of

  2. Practical aspects of gene regulatory inference via conditional inference forests from expression data.

    PubMed

    Bessonov, Kyrylo; Van Steen, Kristel

    2016-12-01

    Gene regulatory network (GRN) inference is an active area of research that facilitates understanding the complex interplays between biological molecules. We propose a novel framework to create such GRNs, based on Conditional Inference Forests (CIFs) as proposed by Strobl et al. Our framework consists of using ensembles of Conditional Inference Trees (CITs) and selecting an appropriate aggregation scheme for variant selection prior to network construction. We show on synthetic microarray data that taking the original implementation of CIFs with conditional permutation scheme (CIFcond ) may lead to improved performance compared to Breiman's implementation of Random Forests (RF). Among all newly introduced CIF-based methods and five network scenarios obtained from the DREAM4 challenge, CIFcond performed best. Networks derived from well-tuned CIFs, obtained by simply averaging P-values over tree ensembles (CIFmean ) are particularly attractive, because they combine adequate performance with computational efficiency. Moreover, thresholds for variable selection are based on significance levels for P-values and, hence, do not need to be tuned. From a practical point of view, our extensive simulations show the potential advantages of CIFmean -based methods. Although more work is needed to improve on speed, especially when fully exploiting the advantages of CITs in the context of heterogeneous and correlated data, we have shown that CIF methodology can be flexibly inserted in a framework to infer biological interactions. Notably, we confirmed biologically relevant interaction between IL2RA and FOXP1, linked to the IL-2 signaling pathway and to type 1 diabetes.

  3. Parks and Recreation: Resource Limitations Affect Condition of Forest Service Recreation Sites

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1991-01-01

    hereafter called districts.2 The Forest Service manages 149 national forests in the United State3 and Puerto Rico . Because the Forest Service’s day-to-day...meet the needs of people with disabilities. According to the questionnaire respondent in the Santa Lucia district of the Los Padres National Forest in

  4. Groundwater-surface water interactions in montane meadows of the Sierra Nevada, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lucas, R. G.; Conklin, M. H.

    2012-12-01

    Meadows often lie in low gradient, groundwater fed terrain of the Sierra Nevada. These settings result in near saturated conditions for much of the year, shallow groundwater tables, and groundwater discharge to surface flow. Our hypothesis is that groundwater fluctuations integrate watershed processes rather than meadow specific processes. Meadow characteristics are in contrast to the adjacent forested landscapes, where soils go dry in the summer, groundwater tables are much deeper, and some fraction of soil water is lost to deeper percolation. We utilize a series water column data from monitoring wells and piezometers in two meadows, soil moisture and snow depth data from nodes in the associated catchment, located within the Southern Sierra Critical Zone Observatory, from water years 2008-2012. Water samples from wells and associated streams were analyzed for major ions and stable water isotopes. Results from the monitoring wells and piezometers show groundwater tables and pressure heads that are highest during snowmelt and decrease over the summer growing season; inter-annual variation is correlated to total accumulated precipitation for the given water year. Groundwater elevations exhibit diurnal fluctuations influenced by snowmelt and evapotranspiration (ET) processes in the spring, transitioning to an ET dominated signal during the summer growing season. These fluctuations are of greatest magnitude near the meadow-forest boundary and least near the center of the meadow. ET signals continue after the meadow vegetation senesces, suggesting influences from the adjacent forested landscape. Deep piezometers (>2.5 m depth) do not exhibit fluctuation at the daily time scale while shallower piezometers (<1 m depth) tend to show some fluctuation at this time interval. Further analysis of the piezometer data shows seasonal variation in the direction and magnitude of groundwater flux. Both near the meadow edge and meadow center, groundwater discharge is strongest during

  5. Practical Application of Electrochemical Nitrate Sensor under Laboratory and Forest Nursery Conditions

    PubMed Central

    Caron, William-Olivier; Lamhamedi, Mohammed S.; Viens, Jeff; Messaddeq, Younès

    2016-01-01

    The reduction of nitrate leaching to ensure greater protection of groundwater quality has become a global issue. The development of new technologies for more accurate dosing of nitrates helps optimize fertilization programs. This paper presents the practical application of a newly developed electrochemical sensor designed for in situ quantification of nitrate. To our knowledge, this paper is the first to report the use of electrochemical impedance to determine nitrate concentrations in growing media under forest nursery conditions. Using impedance measurements, the sensor has been tested in laboratory and compared to colorimetric measurements of the nitrate. The developed sensor has been used in water-saturated growing medium and showed good correlation to certified methods, even in samples obtained over a multi-ion fertilisation season. A linear and significant relationship was observed between the resistance and the concentration of nitrates (R2 = 0.972), for a range of concentrations of nitrates. We also observed stability of the sensor after exposure of one month to the real environmental conditions of the forest nursery. PMID:27483266

  6. Prioritizing conservation potential of arid-land montane natural springs and associated riparian areas

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Thompson, B.C.; Matusik-Rowan, P. L.; Boykin, K.G.

    2002-01-01

    Using inventory data and input from natural resource professionals, we developed a classification system that categorizes conservation potential for montane natural springs. This system contains 18 classes based on the presence of a riparian patch, wetland species, surface water, and evidence of human activity. We measured physical and biological components of 276 montane springs in the Oscura Mountains above 1450 m and the San Andres Mountains above 1300 m in southern New Mexico. Two of the 18 classes were not represented during the inventory, indicating the system applies to conditions beyond the montane springs in our study area. The class type observed most often (73 springs) had a riparian patch, perennial surface water, and human evidence. We assessed our system in relation to 13 other wetland and riparian classification systems regarding approach, area of applicability, intended users, validation, ease of use, and examination of system response. Our classification can be used to rapidly assess priority of conservation potential for isolated riparian sites, especially springs, in arid landscapes. We recommend (1) including this classification in conservation planning, (2) removing deleterious structures from high-priority sites, and (3) assessing efficiency and use of this classification scheme elsewhere. ?? 2002 Elsevier Science Ltd.

  7. Snowpack Response to Changes in Forest Condition Over Six Years Post Mountain Pine Beetle Attack

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Winkler, R.; Boon, S.

    2011-12-01

    Since 1994, 17.5 million hectares of lodgepole pine dominated forest in British Columbia have been attacked by mountain pine beetle (MPB). More than 6 million hectares of timber in Alberta are susceptible, as are lodgepole pine stands throughout the western United States. Such extensive forest die-off raises concern regarding increased snow accumulation and ablation rates in affected stands and associated increases in snowmelt generated streamflow. To quantify changes in snow accumulation and ablation post-MPB, forest condition and snow were monitored in an attacked young lodgepole pine stand, a mature mixed species green stand and a clearcut near Mayson Lake in the southern interior of BC. Surveys began in 2006, the year following attack, and continued until 2011, as trees turned from green to red to grey. Forest canopy loss was described by canopy transmittance and litter in and on the snowpack. Canopy transmittance in the attacked stand increased from 27% in fall 2007 to 49% in spring 2011. Canopy transmittance in the mature stand remained constant, averaging 19% across the stand. The greatest canopy loss in the attacked stand occurred in summer 2009 when canopy transmittance increased from 35% to 42%. However, the largest accumulation of litter over a winter was measured in the spring of 2009 when the weight of litter in the snowpack (210 g m-2) was double that in the green stand and ten times the amount collected in 2010, by which time trees were turning grey. At mid-melt 2009, snow surface litter cover in the attacked stand varied from 0% to 54% and averaged 18% compared to ≤9% in other years. Increases in forest litter in the attacked stand caused a more rapid decay in snow surface albedo in spring 2009 than in other years. Snow water equivalent near the onset of melt varied significantly from year to year; from 148 mm to 263 mm on April 1 in the clearcut, 88 mm to 191 mm in the attacked pine, and 65 mm to 144 mm in the green mature stand. The strongest

  8. Fire modulates climate change response of simulated aspen distribution across topoclimatic gradients in a semi-arid montane landscape

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Yang, Jian; Weisberg, Peter J.; Shinneman, Douglas; Dilts, Thomas E.; Earnst, Susan L.; Scheller, Robert M

    2015-01-01

    Content Changing aspen distribution in response to climate change and fire is a major focus of biodiversity conservation, yet little is known about the potential response of aspen to these two driving forces along topoclimatic gradients. Objective This study is set to evaluate how aspen distribution might shift in response to different climate-fire scenarios in a semi-arid montane landscape, and quantify the influence of fire regime along topoclimatic gradients. Methods We used a novel integration of a forest landscape succession and disturbance model (LANDIS-II) with a fine-scale climatic water deficit approach to simulate dynamics of aspen and associated conifer and shrub species over the next 150 years under various climate-fire scenarios. Results Simulations suggest that many aspen stands could persist without fire for centuries under current climate conditions. However, a simulated 2–5 °C increase in temperature caused a substantial reduction of aspen coverage at lower elevations and a modest increase at upper elevations, leading to an overall reduction of aspen range at the landscape level. Increasing fire activity may favor aspen increase at its upper elevation limits adjacent to coniferous forest, but may also favor reduction of aspen at lower elevation limits adjacent to xeric shrubland. Conclusions Our study highlights the importance of incorporating fine-scale terrain effects on climatic water deficit and ecohydrology when modeling species distribution response to climate change. This modeling study suggests that climate mitigation and adaptation strategies that use fire would benefit from consideration of spatial context at landscape scales.

  9. Home range and diet of feral cats in Hawaii forests

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Smucker, T.D.; Lindsey, G.D.; Mosher, S.M.

    2000-01-01

    Feral cat Felis catus home range in a Hawaiian montane wet forest and their diet in three habitats - montane wet forest, subalpine dry forest, and lowland dry forest - were determined to provide baseline ecological data and to assess potential impacts to native terrestrial fauna. Seven cats (three males and four females) were captured in 624 trap nights. Mean weight of adult cats was 2.85 ?? 0.27 (SE) Kg for males and 1.87 ?? 0.03 kg for females. Mean diumal home range using the adaptive kernel method was 5.74 ?? 2.73 km2 for three males and 2.23 ?? 0.44 km2 for two females. Daytime locations were always within the montane wet forest with the borders on one or more sides of the home ranges of all cats defined by open grassland pastures. Rodents comprised the majority of the cat diets in all three habitats, with the frequencies of occurence between 0.88 and 0.91. Bird remains were a regular component of the diet of cats, with montane wet forest having the highest frequency of occurence (0.68), followed by subalpine dry forest (0.53), and lowland dry forest (0.21).

  10. Sensitivity of Spring-Summer Drought to Warming in Montane and Arid Regions of The Western US

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hidalgo, H. G.; Cayan, D. R.; Dettinger, M. D.

    2005-12-01

    Soil moisture and actual evapotranspiration (AET) simulated by the Variable Infiltration Capacity (VIC) model provide informative depictions of the historical variations of spring-summer drought conditions and their connections with winter preciptiation in montane and arid regions of the western US. Analysis of such simulations provides a basis for better understanding the determinants of warm-season drought, and comparisons of simulated drought conditions with warm-season observations of satellite-derived Normalized Vegetation Difference Indices (NVDI) helps confirm those conclusions, especially in the arid zones. In certain parts of the montane regions, sufficient water is usually available during spring and early summer, as runoff and soil moisture remnants of winter snowpacks, so that AET rates are limited primarily by the energy available. In these regions, spring-summer drought is most sensitive totemperature (T). In arid regions, T is not as significant a determinant of spring-summer drought and AET rates depend on water availability from both winter and warm-season precipitation. Winter precipitation can be an important determinant of spring-summer drought in the montane regions, but essentially always is the primary determinant in semi-arid to arid regions. In the lowlands, correlations between winter precipitation and soil moisture are very strong at lags of three months, although in some regions like southern California, significant correlations were found as lags of five months. In montane regions, the storage of winter precipitation in the natural reservoirs provided by snowpack adds extra lags of land memory to those provided by soil moisture storage. In these regions, the strongest correlations were found between DJF precipitation and MJJ soil moisture (lag five months). In this context, warming trends in the montane regions of the western US may be expected to result in wetter than historical soils during winter and early spring (due to larger rain

  11. Effects of snow condition on microbial respiration of Scots pine needle litter in a boreal forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ohnuki, Masataka; Domisch, Timo; Dannoura, Masako; Ataka, Mioko; Finér, Leena; Repo, Tapani; Osawa, Akira

    2016-04-01

    Climate warming scenarios predict decreasing snow depths and increasing winter precipitation in boreal forests ("rain on snow"). I These conditions may affect the decomposition and the microbial respiration of leaf litter, contributing a major part of tree litters, To understand how different snow conditions during winter would affect the microbial respiration of Scots pine needle litter in a boreal forest, we conducted a laboratory experiment using needle litter of two age classes (newly dropped and older litter). The experiment simulated four different winter treatments, followed by spring and early summer : (1) ambient snow cover (SNOW), (2) Compressed snow and ice encasement (ICE), (3) frozen flood (FLOOD) and (4) no snow cover at all (NO SNOW). The experiment was carried out in four walk-in dasotrons (n=3) with soil temperatures of -2° C and air temperatures of 2° C during winter and increased to 15° C and 20° C during spring, respectively . Needle litter samples were collected three times (prior to the winter, just after winter and at the end of the experiment). We evaluated the microbial respiration from the litter at several temperatures (-5° C, 0° C, 5° C and 12° C), the SIR index (an index estimating the microbial biomass), and the C/N ratio .And we calculated Q10 value (index of microbial respiration activity) using microbial respiration data. We found significant differences in microbial respiration between the newly dropped and older litter at the beginning and at the end of the experiment. However, there were no significant differences in Q10 value and the SIR (index of microbial biomass) between the different winter treatments. All samples showed decrease of microbial activity with time. Finally, we conclude that the winter snow conditions with mild air temperatures as used in our experiment, are not detrimentally affecting the Scots pine needle litter decomposition and its respiration.

  12. Towards the harmonization between National Forest Inventory and Forest Condition Monitoring. Consistency of plot allocation and effect of tree selection methods on sample statistics in Italy.

    PubMed

    Gasparini, Patrizia; Di Cosmo, Lucio; Cenni, Enrico; Pompei, Enrico; Ferretti, Marco

    2013-07-01

    In the frame of a process aiming at harmonizing National Forest Inventory (NFI) and ICP Forests Level I Forest Condition Monitoring (FCM) in Italy, we investigated (a) the long-term consistency between FCM sample points (a subsample of the first NFI, 1985, NFI_1) and recent forest area estimates (after the second NFI, 2005, NFI_2) and (b) the effect of tree selection method (tree-based or plot-based) on sample composition and defoliation statistics. The two investigations were carried out on 261 and 252 FCM sites, respectively. Results show that some individual forest categories (larch and stone pine, Norway spruce, other coniferous, beech, temperate oaks and cork oak forests) are over-represented and others (hornbeam and hophornbeam, other deciduous broadleaved and holm oak forests) are under-represented in the FCM sample. This is probably due to a change in forest cover, which has increased by 1,559,200 ha from 1985 to 2005. In case of shift from a tree-based to a plot-based selection method, 3,130 (46.7%) of the original 6,703 sample trees will be abandoned, and 1,473 new trees will be selected. The balance between exclusion of former sample trees and inclusion of new ones will be particularly unfavourable for conifers (with only 16.4% of excluded trees replaced by new ones) and less for deciduous broadleaves (with 63.5% of excluded trees replaced). The total number of tree species surveyed will not be impacted, while the number of trees per species will, and the resulting (plot-based) sample composition will have a much larger frequency of deciduous broadleaved trees. The newly selected trees have-in general-smaller diameter at breast height (DBH) and defoliation scores. Given the larger rate of turnover, the deciduous broadleaved part of the sample will be more impacted. Our results suggest that both a revision of FCM network to account for forest area change and a plot-based approach to permit statistical inference and avoid bias in the tree sample

  13. 7 CFR 1.620 - What supporting information must the Forest Service provide with its preliminary conditions?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 1 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false What supporting information must the Forest Service provide with its preliminary conditions? 1.620 Section 1.620 Agriculture Office of the Secretary of Agriculture ADMINISTRATIVE REGULATIONS Conditions in FERC Hydropower Licenses Initiation of Hearing...

  14. 7 CFR 1.620 - What supporting information must the Forest Service provide with its preliminary conditions?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 1 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false What supporting information must the Forest Service provide with its preliminary conditions? 1.620 Section 1.620 Agriculture Office of the Secretary of Agriculture ADMINISTRATIVE REGULATIONS Conditions in FERC Hydropower Licenses Initiation of Hearing...

  15. 7 CFR 1.620 - What supporting information must the Forest Service provide with its preliminary conditions?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 1 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false What supporting information must the Forest Service provide with its preliminary conditions? 1.620 Section 1.620 Agriculture Office of the Secretary of Agriculture ADMINISTRATIVE REGULATIONS Conditions in FERC Hydropower Licenses Initiation of Hearing...

  16. 7 CFR 1.620 - What supporting information must the Forest Service provide with its preliminary conditions?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 1 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false What supporting information must the Forest Service provide with its preliminary conditions? 1.620 Section 1.620 Agriculture Office of the Secretary of Agriculture ADMINISTRATIVE REGULATIONS Conditions in FERC Hydropower Licenses Initiation of Hearing...

  17. 7 CFR 1.620 - What supporting information must the Forest Service provide with its preliminary conditions?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 1 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false What supporting information must the Forest Service provide with its preliminary conditions? 1.620 Section 1.620 Agriculture Office of the Secretary of Agriculture ADMINISTRATIVE REGULATIONS Conditions in FERC Hydropower Licenses Initiation of Hearing...

  18. 7 CFR 1.673 - How will the Forest Service analyze a proposed alternative and formulate its modified condition?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 1 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false How will the Forest Service analyze a proposed alternative and formulate its modified condition? 1.673 Section 1.673 Agriculture Office of the Secretary of Agriculture ADMINISTRATIVE REGULATIONS Conditions in FERC Hydropower Licenses Alternatives Process § 1.673...

  19. 7 CFR 1.673 - How will the Forest Service analyze a proposed alternative and formulate its modified condition?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 1 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false How will the Forest Service analyze a proposed alternative and formulate its modified condition? 1.673 Section 1.673 Agriculture Office of the Secretary of Agriculture ADMINISTRATIVE REGULATIONS Conditions in FERC Hydropower Licenses Alternatives Process § 1.673...

  20. 7 CFR 1.673 - How will the Forest Service analyze a proposed alternative and formulate its modified condition?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 1 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false How will the Forest Service analyze a proposed alternative and formulate its modified condition? 1.673 Section 1.673 Agriculture Office of the Secretary of Agriculture ADMINISTRATIVE REGULATIONS Conditions in FERC Hydropower Licenses Alternatives Process § 1.673...

  1. 7 CFR 1.673 - How will the Forest Service analyze a proposed alternative and formulate its modified condition?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 1 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false How will the Forest Service analyze a proposed alternative and formulate its modified condition? 1.673 Section 1.673 Agriculture Office of the Secretary of Agriculture ADMINISTRATIVE REGULATIONS Conditions in FERC Hydropower Licenses Alternatives Process § 1.673...

  2. Factors influencing stream baseflow transit times in tropical montane watersheds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muñoz-Villers, Lyssette E.; Geissert, Daniel R.; Holwerda, Friso; McDonnell, Jeffrey J.

    2016-04-01

    Stream water mean transit time (MTT) is a fundamental hydrologic parameter that integrates the distribution of sources, flow paths, and storages present in catchments. However, in the tropics little MTT work has been carried out, despite its usefulness for providing important information on watershed functioning at different spatial scales in (largely) ungauged basins. In particular, very few studies have quantified stream MTTs or have related these to catchment characteristics in tropical montane regions. Here we examined topographic, land use/cover and soil hydraulic controls on baseflow transit times for nested catchments (0.1-34 km2) within a humid mountainous region, underlain by volcanic soil (Andisols) in central Veracruz (eastern Mexico). We used a 2-year record of bi-weekly isotopic composition of precipitation and stream baseflow data to estimate MTT. Land use/cover and topographic parameters (catchment area and form, drainage density, slope gradient and length) were derived from geographic information system (GIS) analysis. Soil water retention characteristics, and depth and permeability of the soil-bedrock interface were obtained from intensive field measurements and laboratory analysis. Results showed that baseflow MTTs ranged between 1.2 and 2.7 years across the 12 study catchments. Overall, MTTs across scales were mainly controlled by catchment slope and the permeability observed at the soil-bedrock interface. In association with topography, catchment form and the depth to the soil-bedrock interface were also identified as important features influencing baseflow MTTs. The greatest differences in MTTs were found both within groups of small (0.1-1.5 km2) and large (14-34 km2) catchments. Interestingly, the longest stream MTTs were found in the headwater cloud forest catchments.

  3. Variable strength of forest stand attributes and weather conditions on the questing activity of Ixodes ricinus ticks over years in managed forests.

    PubMed

    Lauterbach, Ralf; Wells, Konstans; O'Hara, Robert B; Kalko, Elisabeth K V; Renner, Swen C

    2013-01-01

    Given the ever-increasing human impact through land use and climate change on the environment, we crucially need to achieve a better understanding of those factors that influence the questing activity of ixodid ticks, a major disease-transmitting vector in temperate forests. We investigated variation in the relative questing nymph densities of Ixodes ricinus in differently managed forest types for three years (2008-2010) in SW Germany by drag sampling. We used a hierarchical Bayesian modeling approach to examine the relative effects of habitat and weather and to consider possible nested structures of habitat and climate forces. The questing activity of nymphs was considerably larger in young forest successional stages of thicket compared with pole wood and timber stages. Questing nymph density increased markedly with milder winter temperatures. Generally, the relative strength of the various environmental forces on questing nymph density differed across years. In particular, winter temperature had a negative effect on tick activity across sites in 2008 in contrast to the overall effect of temperature across years. Our results suggest that forest management practices have important impacts on questing nymph density. Variable weather conditions, however, might override the effects of forest management practices on the fluctuations and dynamics of tick populations and activity over years, in particular, the preceding winter temperatures. Therefore, robust predictions and the detection of possible interactions and nested structures of habitat and climate forces can only be quantified through the collection of long-term data. Such data are particularly important with regard to future scenarios of forest management and climate warming.

  4. Modeling the gopher-meadow eco-geomorphic system on montane hillslopes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Winchell, E. W.; Doak, D. F.; Anderson, R. S.

    2013-12-01

    On montane hillslopes of Colorado's Front Range, the transport of soil by gophers can dominate the modern geomorphic system in meadows. Qualitative observations reveal that gophers prefer to forage in meadows over forests, that seedling roots are consumed by gophers, and that trees commonly occupy the rocky crests of hills overlooking open meadow hillslopes. This motivates a numerical model of gopher-mediated transport of soil and the long-term evolution of the coupled ecological-geomorphic system through quantitative observations from a manipulative experiment on meadow-centered plots in the Boulder Creek CZO in the Colorado Front Range montane forest. The ecological and geomorphic processes in the coupled system we wish to model must include: seedling establishment and damage, gopher tunneling geometries and resulting mound generation, mound material transport driven by rain and hail and by ungulate trampling, vegetative lock-down of mound material, and resulting changes in the soil depth and rockiness of the landscape. We must therefore have algorithms to capture the feedback mechanisms between gopher activity and the growth and potential death of trees, the casting of seeds and their likelihood of germination, and the spatial distribution of plants. The ecological component interacts with the soils/critical zone layer through feedbacks that include the dependence of gopher activity on root density, depth, and size, undergrowth availability, and the dependence of the rate of change of soil thickness on gradients in gopher-mediated transport. Results of a preliminary cellular automaton model which captures the essence of these geomorphic-ecological feedbacks can readily address the role of gophers in limiting the encroachment of trees into meadow patches. The bioturbation of the meadows, and the downslope transport of soil within them, is much more efficient than that in the forest, which sees little to no gopher activity. These geomorphic transport hotspots will

  5. Zooplankton assemblages in montane lakes and ponds of Mount Rainier National Park, Washington State, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Larson, G.L.; Hoffman, R.; McIntire, C.D.; Lienkaemper, G.; Samora, B.

    2009-01-01

    Water quality and zooplankton samples were collected during the ice-free periods between 1988 and 2005 from 103 oligotrophic montane lakes and ponds located in low forest to alpine vegetation zones in Mount Rainier National Park, Washington State, USA. Collectively, 45 rotifer and 44 crustacean taxa were identified. Most of the numerically dominant taxa appeared to have wide niche breadths. The average number of taxa per lake decreased with elevation and generally increased as maximum lake depths increased (especially for rotifers). With one exception, fish presence/absence did not explain the taxonomic compositions of crustacean zooplankton assemblages. Many rotifer species were common members of zooplankton assemblages in montane lakes and ponds in western North America, whereas the crustacean taxa were common to some areas of the west, but not others. Constraints of the environmental variables did not appear to provide strong gradients to separate the distributions of most zooplankton species. This suggests that interspecific competitive interactions and stochastic processes regulate the taxonomic structures of the zooplankton assemblages at the landscape level. Crustacean species that had broad niche breadths were associated with different rotifer taxa across the environmental gradients. Studies of zooplankton assemblages need to address both crustacean and rotifer taxa, not one or the other.

  6. Recent Extreme Forest Fire Activity in Western Russia: Fire Danger Conditions, Fire Behavior and Smoke Transport

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stocks, B. J.; Fromm, M.; Goldammer, J.; Carr, R.; Sukhinin, A. I.

    2010-12-01

    During the summer of 2010, widespread forest and peatland fires in western Russia burned over hundreds of thousands of hectares, burning over croplands, destroying hundreds of homes, and directly causing the death of more than 50 people. Unprecedented drought conditions, combined with an extended heat wave, resulted in extreme fire danger conditions and explosive fire behavior in a region of Russia not noted for large fires. Several fires exhibited pyroconvection, injecting smoke directly into the upper troposphere and lower stratosphere, while deep-burning fires created major regional smoke problems. This smoke persisted in the heavily-populated areas around Moscow, exposing millions to high levels of ozone and particulate matter, and creating both immediate and longer-term health risks. This presentation will explore the drought conditions leading to the catastrophic fire behavior experienced in western Russia, and analyze fire behavior in terms of fuel consumption, smoke production, fire intensity levels, and pyroconvection. Impacts of regional and long-range smoke transport will also be discussed.

  7. Vertical gradient of climate change and climate tourism conditions in the Black Forest.

    PubMed

    Endler, Christina; Oehler, Karoline; Matzarakis, Andreas

    2010-01-01

    Due to the public discussion about global and regional warming, the regional climate and the modified climate conditions are analyzed exemplarily for three different regions in the southern Black Forest (southwest Germany). The driving question behind the present study was how can tourism adapt to modified climate conditions and associated changes to the tourism potential in low mountain ranges. The tourism potential is predominately based on the attractiveness of natural resources being climate-sensitive. In this study, regional climate simulations (A1B) are analyzed by using the REMO model. To analyze the climatic tourism potential, the following thermal, physical and aesthetic parameters are considered for the time span 1961-2050: thermal comfort, heat and cold stress, sunshine, humid-warm conditions (sultriness), fog, precipitation, storm, and ski potential (snow cover). Frequency classes of these parameters expressed as a percentage are processed on a monthly scale. The results are presented in form of the Climate-Tourism-Information-Scheme (CTIS). Due to warmer temperatures, winters might shorten while summers might lengthen. The lowland might be more affected by heat and sultriness (e.g., Freiburg due to the effects of urban climate). To adapt to a changing climate and tourism, the awareness of both stakeholders and tourists as well as the adaptive capability are essential.

  8. The performance of sonic anemometers under foggy conditions - An intercomparision above a Taiwanese mountainous cloud forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    El-Madany, T.; Griessbaum, F.; Maneke, F.; Chu, H.-S.; Wu, C.-C.; Chang, S. C.; Hsia, Y.-J.; Juang, J.-Y.; Klemm, O.

    2010-07-01

    Foggy conditions are a toughness test for anemometers because the transceivers are continuously influenced by the deposition of fog-droplets. During a period of nearly four weeks three sonic anemometers where tested for their performance under foggy conditions. The anemometers were set up on a 24 meter high flux tower in a 14 meter high Chamaecyparis obtusa var. Formosana forest. The test anemometers were a Gill R3-50, a Young 81000V, and a Campbell CSAT3 (equipped with ‘dripping noses’). All anemometers were set up at one level on the highest platform of the tower. The performance was evaluated on the basis of 10 Hz data. The test site is located in the northwest of Taiwan at about 1650 m above sea level. This location is influenced by a steady diurnal wind system of valley winds during daytime and mountain winds during nighttime. The valley winds transport air masses from the coast up to the mountain where they cool down and fog development occurs. Due to this effect the site is highly frequented with fog. Results of this intercomparison will be presented.

  9. Response of the agile antechinus to habitat edge, configuration and condition in fragmented forest.

    PubMed

    Johnstone, Christopher P; Lill, Alan; Reina, Richard D

    2011-01-01

    Habitat fragmentation and degradation seriously threaten native animal communities. We studied the response of a small marsupial, the agile antechinus Antechinus agilis, to several environmental variables in anthropogenically fragmented Eucalyptus forest in south-east Australia. Agile antechinus were captured more in microhabitats dominated by woody debris than in other microhabitats. Relative abundances of both sexes were positively correlated with fragment core area. Male and female mass-size residuals were smaller in larger fragments. A health status indicator, haemoglobin-haematocrit residuals (HHR), did not vary as a function of any environmental variable in females, but male HHR indicated better health where sites' microhabitats were dominated by shrubs, woody debris and trees other than Eucalyptus. Females were trapped less often in edge than interior fragment habitat and their physiological stress level, indicated by the neutrophil/lymphocyte ratio in peripheral blood, was higher where fragments had a greater proportion of edge habitat. The latter trend was potentially due to lymphopoenia resulting from stress hormone-mediated leukocyte trafficking. Using multiple indicators of population condition and health status facilitates a comprehensive examination of the effects of anthropogenic disturbances, such as habitat fragmentation and degradation, on native vertebrates. Male agile antechinus' health responded negatively to habitat degradation, whilst females responded negatively to the proportion of edge habitat. The health and condition indicators used could be employed to identify conservation strategies that would make habitat fragments less stressful for this or similar native, small mammals.

  10. Breaking The Enzymatic Latch: Do Anaerobic Conditions Constrain Decomposition In Humid Tropical Forest Soil?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hall, S. J.; Silver, W. L.

    2011-12-01

    Anaerobic conditions have been proposed to impose a "latch" on soil organic matter decomposition by inhibiting the activity of extracellular enzymes that catalyze the transformation of organic polymers into monomers for microbial assimilation. Here, we tested the hypothesis that anaerobiosis inhibits soil hydrolytic enzyme activity in a humid tropical forest ecosystem in Puerto Rico. We sampled surface and sub-surface soil from each of 59 plots (n = 118) stratified across distinct topographical zones (ridges, slopes, and valleys) known to vary in soil oxygen (O2) concentrations, and measured the potential activity of five hydrolytic enzymes that decompose carbon (C), nitrogen (N), and phosphorus (P) substrates. We measured reduced iron (Fe (II)) concentrations in soil extractions to provide a spatially and temporally integrated index of anaerobic microbial activity, since iron oxides constitute the dominant anaerobic terminal electron acceptor in this ecosystem. Surprisingly, we observed positive relationships between Fe (II) concentrations and the activity of all enzymes that we assayed. Linear mixed effects models that included Fe (II) concentration, topographic position, and their interaction explained between 30 to 70 % of the variance of enzyme activity of β-1,4-glucosidase, β-cellobiohydrolase, β-xylosidase, N-acetylglucosaminidase, and acid phosphatase. Soils from ridges and slopes contained between 10 and 800 μg Fe (II) g-1 soil, and exhibited consistently positive relationships (p < 0.0001) between Fe (II) and enzyme activity. Valley soils did not display significant relationships between enzyme activity and Fe (II), although they displayed variation in soil Fe (II) concentrations similar to ridges and slopes. Overall, valleys exhibited lower enzyme activity and lower Fe (II) concentrations than ridges or slopes, possibly related to decreased root biomass and soil C. Our data provide no indication that anaerobiosis suppresses soil enzyme activity, but

  11. Hyperspectral Remote Sensing to Detect Water Repellent Soil Conditions after Forest Fires

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lewis, S. A.; Robichaud, P. R.; Wu, J. Q.

    2002-12-01

    The burning of organic surface litter during forest fires often results in a water repellent soil layer at or near the soil surface. Organic matter is volatilized and a significant fraction moves into the upper soil layers (top 5 cm). Upon cooling, soil particles are coated with hydrophobic organic substances and the soil displays drastically reduced infiltration capabilities. The degree of water repellency is related to the amount of organic material on the surface prior to the fire, and the duration and temperature of the burn. Carbon compounds that are indicative of burned organic matter have been identified spectrally in soils under laboratory conditions. The 1000-2500 nm (near through short wave infrared) range is the span of the electromagnetic spectrum exhibiting significant adsorption for many organic compounds. Since burning alters surface organic matter and it is possible to detect such a change spectrally, a hyperspectral sensor should be able to provide information ultimately relating the change in organic matter to soil water repellency. This study aims to use a hyperspectral sensor to determine the degree of water repellency of surface soil in three burn classifications (low, moderate, and high) after a forest fire. One hundred eighty plots (sixty per burn class) were selected within the Hayman fire perimeter in southern Colorado in July 2002. A hand-held hyperspectral sensor was used to measure soil reflectance at several plots within each burn classification. An aerially- mounted hyperspectral sensor was also flown over the fire site. Twelve flight lines were flown to ensure contiguous coverage of the entire fire. The on-site ground truthing included both the Water Drop Penetration Time (WDPT) test and an infiltrometer test, with the former being a traditional method and the latter a new approach for testing water repellency. Both methods correlate the time to the start of infiltration with the degree of soil water repellency. The measured soil

  12. Effects of foggy conditions on the measurement of stem respiration in a cloud forest in Taiwan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chang, S.-C.; Wang, H.-K.; Lin, Y.-C.; Hsia, Y.-J.

    2010-07-01

    Stem CO2 efflux of a Chamaecyparis obtusa var. formosana forest ecosystem was measured at the Chi-Lan Mountain (CLM) site in northern Taiwan. The site is located at an altitude of 1650 m and is subjected to frequent fog coverage around the year. Stem CO2 efflux was measured continuously at 1 m height by horizontally mounting an automatic soil respiration chamber system (LI-8100 Survey Chamber, LI-COR) on the stem surface. Every 10 min, the chamber was closed for 2 min for the measurement of CO2 concentration within the closed system. Stem temperature beside the chamber was monitored by a thermistor inserted 3 cm into the stem. Sapflow velocity was recorded using thermal dissipation probes installed on five nearby Chamaecyparis obtusa var. formosana trees. The data from May 2009 was used in the current analysis. Under clear weather, e. g. on May 8, 2009, the diurnal stem CO2 efflux rate vs. stem temperature showed a clear hysteresis loop. The daytime stem CO2 efflux rates were lower than the potential values, which were predicted by the nighttime stem temperature-stem CO2 efflux relation. The magnitude of the daytime depression of the stem CO2 efflux was positively correlated with the sapflow velocity. On the contrary, when the site was submerged in fog during the daytime, the hysteresis did not take place and the very low sapflow velocities caused only minor decrease in the daytime stem CO2 efflux compared to those in nighttime. In May 2009, the daily accumulated daytime depression of stem CO2 efflux ranged from 0.54 to 7.70 mmol m-2. The daily daytime foggy time had a negative linear correlation with the amount of daily depression. The effects of foggy conditions on the stem CO2 efflux measurement might have some ecological implications. The frequent occurrence of fog in the cloud forests, where the transpiration rates are low, might guarantee a less biased estimation of stem respiration by the chamber method. The measured stem CO2 efflux might significantly

  13. Impact of forest disturbance on the runoff response in headwater catchments. Case study: Sumava mountains, Czech republic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Langhammer, Jakub; Hais, Martin; Bartunkova, Kristyna; Su, Ye

    2013-04-01

    The forest disturbance and stream modifications are important phenomenon affecting the natural dynamics of erosion and sedimentation processes on montane and submontane streams. The changes in land use, land cover structure, forest cover and stream modifications, occurring in the cultural landscape have significant effect on the dynamics of fluvial processes, especially in relation to the extreme runoff events. The contribution discusses the relations between forest disturbance and fluvial dynamics, stemming from the research in Sumava Mountains, located at the border between Czech Republic and Germany, Central Europe. The study area is located in headwater region, affected by different types of forest disturbance in past three decades - bark beetle outbreak, repeated windstorms and clear-cut forest management. The streams in experimental catchments here displayed extensive dynamics of erosion and sedimentation after the extreme floods in 2002 and 2009 and were affected by artificial modifications. The analysis is based on the combination of different research techniques, including remote sensed data processing, network of automated high frequency rainfall-runoff monitoring or field survey of stream modifications and geomorphologic changes on riverbeds after extreme events. Using landsat satellite data and aerial photographs we created model of Bark beetle dispersion and clear-cutting between 1985 and 2007. This model enables to describe disturbance dynamic, which is needed for understanding of nature those processes. Next analysis of Landsat satellite data was used to detect the effect of forest disturbance on the wetness and temperature properties of land cover, affected by two significant different types of forest disturbance - bark beetle outbreak and clear cut. The rainfall-runoff analysis using multivariate geostatistical techniques was focused on experimental catchments with similar conditions of climate, physiography and topography but different type

  14. Water Quality Conditions Associated with Cattle Grazing and Recreation on National Forest Lands

    PubMed Central

    Roche, Leslie M.; Kromschroeder, Lea; Atwill, Edward R.; Dahlgren, Randy A.; Tate, Kenneth W.

    2013-01-01

    There is substantial concern that microbial and nutrient pollution by cattle on public lands degrades water quality, threatening human and ecological health. Given the importance of clean water on multiple-use landscapes, additional research is required to document and examine potential water quality issues across common resource use activities. During the 2011 grazing-recreation season, we conducted a cross sectional survey of water quality conditions associated with cattle grazing and/or recreation on 12 public lands grazing allotments in California. Our specific study objectives were to 1) quantify fecal indicator bacteria (FIB; fecal coliform and E. coli), total nitrogen, nitrate, ammonium, total phosphorus, and soluble-reactive phosphorus concentrations in surface waters; 2) compare results to a) water quality regulatory benchmarks, b) recommended maximum nutrient concentrations, and c) estimates of nutrient background concentrations; and 3) examine relationships between water quality, environmental conditions, cattle grazing, and recreation. Nutrient concentrations observed throughout the grazing-recreation season were at least one order of magnitude below levels of ecological concern, and were similar to U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) estimates for background water quality conditions in the region. The relative percentage of FIB regulatory benchmark exceedances widely varied under individual regional and national water quality standards. Relative to USEPA’s national E. coli FIB benchmarks–the most contemporary and relevant standards for this study–over 90% of the 743 samples collected were below recommended criteria values. FIB concentrations were significantly greater when stream flow was low or stagnant, water was turbid, and when cattle were actively observed at sampling. Recreation sites had the lowest mean FIB, total nitrogen, and soluble-reactive phosphorus concentrations, and there were no significant differences in FIB and

  15. Fuel deposition rates of montane and subalpine conifers in the central Sierra Nevada, California, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    van Wagtendonk, J.W.; Moore, P.E.

    2010-01-01

    Fire managers and researchers need information on fuel deposition rates to estimate future changes in fuel bed characteristics, determine when forests transition to another fire behavior fuel model, estimate future changes in fuel bed characteristics, and parameterize and validate ecosystem process models. This information is lacking for many ecosystems including the Sierra Nevada in California, USA. We investigated fuel deposition rates and stand characteristics of seven montane and four subalpine conifers in the Sierra Nevada. We collected foliage, miscellaneous bark and crown fragments, cones, and woody fuel classes from four replicate plots each in four stem diameter size classes for each species, for a total of 176 sampling sites. We used these data to develop predictive equations for each fuel class and diameter size class of each species based on stem and crown characteristics. There were consistent species and diameter class differences in the annual amount of foliage and fragments deposited. Foliage deposition rates ranged from just over 50 g m-2 year-1 in small diameter mountain hemlock stands to ???300 g m-2 year-1 for the three largest diameter classes of giant sequoia. The deposition rate for most woody fuel classes increased from the smallest diameter class stands to the largest diameter class stands. Woody fuel deposition rates varied among species as well. The rates for the smallest woody fuels ranged from 0.8 g m-2 year-1 for small diameter stands of Jeffrey pine to 126.9 g m-2 year-1 for very large diameter stands of mountain hemlock. Crown height and live crown ratio were the best predictors of fuel deposition rates for most fuel classes and species. Both characteristics reflect the amount of crown biomass including foliage and woody fuels. Relationships established in this study allow predictions of fuel loads to be made on a stand basis for each of these species under current and possible future conditions. These predictions can be used to

  16. Examining historical and current mixed-severity fire regimes in ponderosa pine and mixed-conifer forests of western North America.

    PubMed

    Odion, Dennis C; Hanson, Chad T; Arsenault, André; Baker, William L; Dellasala, Dominick A; Hutto, Richard L; Klenner, Walt; Moritz, Max A; Sherriff, Rosemary L; Veblen, Thomas T; Williams, Mark A

    2014-01-01

    There is widespread concern that fire exclusion has led to an unprecedented threat of uncharacteristically severe fires in ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa Dougl. ex. Laws) and mixed-conifer forests of western North America. These extensive montane forests are considered to be adapted to a low/moderate-severity fire regime that maintained stands of relatively old trees. However, there is increasing recognition from landscape-scale assessments that, prior to any significant effects of fire exclusion, fires and forest structure were more variable in these forests. Biota in these forests are also dependent on the resources made available by higher-severity fire. A better understanding of historical fire regimes in the ponderosa pine and mixed-conifer forests of western North America is therefore needed to define reference conditions and help maintain characteristic ecological diversity of these systems. We compiled landscape-scale evidence of historical fire severity patterns in the ponderosa pine and mixed-conifer forests from published literature sources and stand ages available from the Forest Inventory and Analysis program in the USA. The consensus from this evidence is that the traditional reference conditions of low-severity fire regimes are inaccurate for most forests of western North America. Instead, most forests appear to have been characterized by mixed-severity fire that included ecologically significant amounts of weather-driven, high-severity fire. Diverse forests in different stages of succession, with a high proportion in relatively young stages, occurred prior to fire exclusion. Over the past century, successional diversity created by fire decreased. Our findings suggest that ecological management goals that incorporate successional diversity created by fire may support characteristic biodiversity, whereas current attempts to "restore" forests to open, low-severity fire conditions may not align with historical reference conditions in most ponderosa

  17. Examining Historical and Current Mixed-Severity Fire Regimes in Ponderosa Pine and Mixed-Conifer Forests of Western North America

    PubMed Central

    Odion, Dennis C.; Hanson, Chad T.; Arsenault, André; Baker, William L.; DellaSala, Dominick A.; Hutto, Richard L.; Klenner, Walt; Moritz, Max A.; Sherriff, Rosemary L.; Veblen, Thomas T.; Williams, Mark A.

    2014-01-01

    There is widespread concern that fire exclusion has led to an unprecedented threat of uncharacteristically severe fires in ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa Dougl. ex. Laws) and mixed-conifer forests of western North America. These extensive montane forests are considered to be adapted to a low/moderate-severity fire regime that maintained stands of relatively old trees. However, there is increasing recognition from landscape-scale assessments that, prior to any significant effects of fire exclusion, fires and forest structure were more variable in these forests. Biota in these forests are also dependent on the resources made available by higher-severity fire. A better understanding of historical fire regimes in the ponderosa pine and mixed-conifer forests of western North America is therefore needed to define reference conditions and help maintain characteristic ecological diversity of these systems. We compiled landscape-scale evidence of historical fire severity patterns in the ponderosa pine and mixed-conifer forests from published literature sources and stand ages available from the Forest Inventory and Analysis program in the USA. The consensus from this evidence is that the traditional reference conditions of low-severity fire regimes are inaccurate for most forests of western North America. Instead, most forests appear to have been characterized by mixed-severity fire that included ecologically significant amounts of weather-driven, high-severity fire. Diverse forests in different stages of succession, with a high proportion in relatively young stages, occurred prior to fire exclusion. Over the past century, successional diversity created by fire decreased. Our findings suggest that ecological management goals that incorporate successional diversity created by fire may support characteristic biodiversity, whereas current attempts to “restore” forests to open, low-severity fire conditions may not align with historical reference conditions in most ponderosa

  18. Groupwise conditional random forests for automatic shape classification and contour quality assessment in radiotherapy planning.

    PubMed

    McIntosh, Chris; Svistoun, Igor; Purdie, Thomas G

    2013-06-01

    Radiation therapy is used to treat cancer patients around the world. High quality treatment plans maximally radiate the targets while minimally radiating healthy organs at risk. In order to judge plan quality and safety, segmentations of the targets and organs at risk are created, and the amount of radiation that will be delivered to each structure is estimated prior to treatment. If the targets or organs at risk are mislabelled, or the segmentations are of poor quality, the safety of the radiation doses will be erroneously reviewed and an unsafe plan could proceed. We propose a technique to automatically label groups of segmentations of different structures from a radiation therapy plan for the joint purposes of providing quality assurance and data mining. Given one or more segmentations and an associated image we seek to assign medically meaningful labels to each segmentation and report the confidence of that label. Our method uses random forests to learn joint distributions over the training features, and then exploits a set of learned potential group configurations to build a conditional random field (CRF) that ensures the assignment of labels is consistent across the group of segmentations. The CRF is then solved via a constrained assignment problem. We validate our method on 1574 plans, consisting of 17[Formula: see text] 579 segmentations, demonstrating an overall classification accuracy of 91.58%. Our results also demonstrate the stability of RF with respect to tree depth and the number of splitting variables in large data sets.

  19. Watershed-scale modeling of streamflow change in incised montane meadows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Essaid, Hedeff I.; Hill, Barry R.

    2014-03-01

    Land use practices have caused stream channel incision and water table decline in many montane meadows of the Western United States. Incision changes the magnitude and timing of streamflow in water supply source watersheds, a concern to resource managers and downstream water users. The hydrology of montane meadows under natural and incised conditions was investigated using watershed simulation for a range of hydrologic conditions. The results illustrate the interdependence between: watershed and meadow hydrology; bedrock and meadow aquifers; and surface and groundwater flow through the meadow for the modeled scenarios. During the wet season, stream incision resulted in less overland flow and interflow and more meadow recharge causing a net decrease in streamflow and increase in groundwater storage relative to natural meadow conditions. During the dry season, incision resulted in less meadow evapotranspiration and more groundwater discharge to the stream causing a net increase in streamflow and a decrease in groundwater storage relative to natural meadow conditions. In general, for a given meadow setting, the magnitude of change in summer streamflow and long-term change in watershed groundwater storage due to incision will depend on the combined effect of: reduced evapotranspiration in the eroded meadow; induced groundwater recharge; replenishment of dry season groundwater storage depletion in meadow and bedrock aquifers by precipitation during wet years; and groundwater storage depletion that is not replenished by precipitation during wet years.

  20. Watershed-scale modeling of streamflow change in incised montane meadows

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Essaid, Hedeff I.; Hill, Barry R.

    2014-01-01

    Land use practices have caused stream channel incision and water table decline in many montane meadows of the Western United States. Incision changes the magnitude and timing of streamflow in water supply source watersheds, a concern to resource managers and downstream water users. The hydrology of montane meadows under natural and incised conditions was investigated using watershed simulation for a range of hydrologic conditions. The results illustrate the interdependence between: watershed and meadow hydrology; bedrock and meadow aquifers; and surface and groundwater flow through the meadow for the modeled scenarios. During the wet season, stream incision resulted in less overland flow and interflow and more meadow recharge causing a net decrease in streamflow and increase in groundwater storage relative to natural meadow conditions. During the dry season, incision resulted in less meadow evapotranspiration and more groundwater discharge to the stream causing a net increase in streamflow and a decrease in groundwater storage relative to natural meadow conditions. In general, for a given meadow setting, the magnitude of change in summer streamflow and long-term change in watershed groundwater storage due to incision will depend on the combined effect of: reduced evapotranspiration in the eroded meadow; induced groundwater recharge; replenishment of dry season groundwater storage depletion in meadow and bedrock aquifers by precipitation during wet years; and groundwater storage depletion that is not replenished by precipitation during wet years.

  1. Influence of forest stands on soil and ecosystem carbon stocks in the conditions of the European part of Russia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaganov, Vladimir

    2016-04-01

    Forest stands are one of the most important components of ecosystems, both in Russia and around the world and at the same time forest vegetation is able to provide environment-modifying effect on the occupied landscape and, in particular, on the soil cover. Currently, due to the large interest in the carbon cycle, there is a question about the influence of forest vegetation on carbon stocks in ecosystems and in particular in the soil cover. To perform the study we selected 9 objects located in the European part of Russia from the area of the southern taiga to the semi-desert zone: Novgorod region, Kostroma region, Moscow region (2 objects), Penza region, Voronezh region, Volgograd region (2 objects) and Astrakhan region. For studying the influence of forest vegetation on the soil`s carbon, we organized the following experiment scheme: in each of the objects two key sites were selected, so that they originally were in the same soil conditions and the difference between them was only in a course development of vegetation - forest or grass. One part of the experimental sites, presenting forest vegetation, were the restored forests on abandoned lands with the age of 70-200 years. The second part of the experimental sites were artificial forest plantations aged from 60 to 112 years planted on the originally treeless forest-steppe or steppe landscapes. Perennial hayfields, perennial abandoned agricultural landscapes and virgin steppe areas were used as reference sites with grass vegetation. For each forest site we estimated the major carbon pools: phytomass, mortmass (dead wood, dry grass), debris, litter and soil. All data were recalculated using the conversion factors in carbon stocks in t C ha-1. We collected soil samples every 10 cm until the depth of 50 cm, and then at 50-75 and 75-100 cm soil layers. Bulk density and total organic carbon were determined by CHN analyzer. As a result, the soil`s carbon was also calculated into t C ha-1. We found out that the total

  2. Disturbances catalyze the adaptation of forest ecosystems to changing climate conditions.

    PubMed

    Thom, Dominik; Rammer, Werner; Seidl, Rupert

    2017-01-01

    The rates of anthropogenic climate change substantially exceed those at which forest ecosystems - dominated by immobile, long-lived organisms - are able to adapt. The resulting maladaptation of forests has potentially detrimental effects on ecosystem functioning. Furthermore, as many forest-dwelling species are highly dependent on the prevailing tree species, a delayed response of the latter to a changing climate can contribute to an extinction debt and mask climate-induced biodiversity loss. However, climate change will likely also intensify forest disturbances. Here, we tested the hypothesis that disturbances foster the reorganization of ecosystems and catalyze the adaptation of forest composition to climate change. Our specific objectives were (i) to quantify the rate of autonomous forest adaptation to climate change, (ii) examine the role of disturbance in the adaptation process, and (iii) investigate spatial differences in climate-induced species turnover in an unmanaged mountain forest landscape (Kalkalpen National Park, Austria). Simulations with a process-based forest landscape model were performed for 36 unique combinations of climate and disturbance scenarios over 1000 years. We found that climate change strongly favored European beech and oak species (currently prevailing in mid- to low-elevation areas), with novel species associations emerging on the landscape. Yet, it took between 357 and 706 years before the landscape attained a dynamic equilibrium with the climate system. Disturbances generally catalyzed adaptation and decreased the time needed to attain equilibrium by up to 211 years. However, while increasing disturbance frequency and severity accelerated adaptation, increasing disturbance size had the opposite effect. Spatial analyses suggest that particularly the lowest and highest elevation areas will be hotspots of future species change. We conclude that the growing maladaptation of forests to climate and the long lead times of autonomous

  3. Technologies of Physical Monitoring and Mathematical Modeling for Estimation of Ground Forest Fuel Fire Condition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baranovskiy, Nikolay V.; Bazarov, Alexandr V.

    2016-02-01

    Description of new experimental installations for the control of parameters of environment with a view of monitoring of forest fires presented in article. Stationary and mobile variants developed. Typical results of operation of installations during a fire-dangerous season of 2015 in vicinities of Ulan-Ude (Republic Buryatiya, Russia) presented. One-dimensional mathematical model of forest fuel drying which can be used for monitoring of forest fire danger with attraction of environmental parameters data during fire-dangerous season offered. Verification of mathematical model with use of known experimental data spent.

  4. Soil fertility and the impact of exotic invasion on microbial communities in Hawaiian forests.

    PubMed

    Kao-Kniffin, Jenny; Balser, Teri C

    2008-07-01

    Exotic plant invasions into Hawaiian montane forests have altered many important nutrient cycling processes and pools. Across different ecosystems, researchers are uncovering the mechanisms involved in how invasive plants impact the soil microbial community-the primary mediator of soil nutrient cycling. We examined whether the invasive plant, Hedychium gardnerianum, altered microbial community composition in forests dominated by a native tree, Metrosideros polymorpha, under varying soil nutrient limitations and soil fertility properties within forest plots of the Hawaii long-term substrate age gradient (LSAG). Microbial community lipid analysis revealed that when nutrient limitation (as determined by aboveground net primary production [ANPP]) and soil fertility were taken into account, plant species differentially altered soil microbial community composition. Microbial community characteristics differed under invasive and native plants primarily when N or P was added to the older, highly weathered, P-limited soils. Long-term fertilization with N or P at the P-limited site led to a significant increase in the relative abundance of the saprophytic fungal indicator (18:2 omega 6c,9c) under the invasive plant. In the younger, N-limited soils, plant species played a minor role in influencing soil microbial community composition. We found that the general rhizosphere microbial community structure was determined more by soil fertility than by plant species. This study indicates that although the aggressive invasion of a nutrient-demanding, rapidly decomposable, and invasive plant into Hawaiian forests had large impacts on soil microbial decomposers, relatively little impact occurred on the overall soil microbial community structure. Instead, soil nutrient conditions were more important determinants of the overall microbial community structure within Hawaii's montane forests.

  5. Mapping Robinia Pseudoacacia Forest Health Conditions by Using Combined Spectral, Spatial and Textureal Information Extracted from Ikonos Imagery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, H.; Zhao, Y.; Pu, R.; Zhang, Z.

    2016-10-01

    In this study grey-level co-occurrence matrix (GLCM) textures and a local statistical analysis Getis statistic (Gi), computed from IKONOS multispectral (MS) imagery acquired from the Yellow River Delta in China, along with a random forest (RF) classifier, were used to discriminate Robina pseudoacacia tree health levels. The different RF classification results of the three forest health conditions were created: (1) an overall accuracy (OA) of 79.5% produced using the four MS band reflectances only; (2) an OA of 97.1% created with the eight GLCM features calculated from IKONOS Band 4 with the optimal window size of 13 × 13 and direction 45°; (3) an OA of 94.0% created using the four Gi features calculated from the four IKONOS MS bands with the optimal distance value of 5 and Queen's neighborhood rule; and (4) an OA of 96.9% created with the combined 16 spectral (four), spatial (four), and textural (eight) features. The experimental results demonstrate that (a) both textural and spatial information was more useful than spectral information in determining the Robina pseudoacacia forest health conditions; and (b) IKONOS NIR band was more powerful than visible bands in quantifying varying degree of forest crown dieback.

  6. Monitoring of environmental conditions in taiga forests using ERS-1 SAR

    SciTech Connect

    Rignot, E.; Way, J.B.; McDonald, K. ); Viereck, L.; Williams, C.; Adams, P.; Payne, C.; Wood, W. ); Shi, J. )

    1994-08-01

    Synthetic-aperture radar images of forest site near Manley Hot Springs (64[degree]N, 151[degree]W), Alaska, were collected between August 1991 and December 1991, day and night, every 3 days, at C-band frequency ([lambda] = 5.7 cm), vertical receive and transmit polarization, by the European Space Agency First Remote Sensing Satellite, ERS-1. During the same period, air and soil temperatures and dielectric and gravimetric moisture properties of the forest canopy and forest floor were monitored in three forest stands dominated, respectively, by black spruce (Picea mariana), white spruce (Picea glauca), and balsam poplar (Populus balsamifera). The calibrated ERS-1 radar backscatter values, [sigma][degree], of the forest stands are shown to exhibit a pronounced temporal pattern, with little separability between tree species. The largest change in [sigma][degree], a 3-dB decrease almost independent of tree species, is observed in early winter when the soil and vegetation freeze. In the summer, temporal fluctuations in [sigma][degree] are about 1--2 dB in magnitude, depending on tree species. Diurnal variations in [sigma][degree] are as large as 2 dB during fall freeze-up, and less than 1 dB in summer and winter. These temporal variations in radar backscatter from the forest are interpreted using the MIMICS radar backscatter model and the in situ surface observations as due to changes in the dielectric properties of the forest floor and forest canopy induced by precipitation (summer), drought (fall), and freezing (fall-winter) events. In winter, [sigma][degree] increases across the entire landscape, probably because of volume scattering from large depth hoar ice crystals forming in the snow pack.

  7. The Influence Of Variability Of Water Resources In Lowland Forests On Selected Parameters Describing The Condition Of Trees

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tyszka, Jan; Stolarek, Andrzej; Fronczak, Ewa

    2014-01-01

    The influence of water conditions on the condition and growth of tree stands has been analysed in the context of the climatic and hydrological functions forest plays. Long observational series obtained for precipitation, outflow and depths below the surface of the water table have been put together with measured increases in the breast-height diameters of Scots pines and the severity of crown defoliation observable in selected tree species growing on the Polish Lowland, in order to determine the overall scope to the reaction stand condition manifests in the face of ongoing variability of water conditions within forest. An overall improvement in the condition of stands over the last 20 years does not disguise several-year cyclicity to changes capable of shaping the situation, i.a. departures from long-term mean values for precipitation totals and groundwater levels. The condition of stands is seen to worsen in both dry and wet years. Analysis of the degree to which pine, spruce and broadleaved stands experience defoliation points to spruce stands responding most to extreme hydro-climatic conditions. Extreme situations as regards water resources were seen to involve a response over two-year time intervals in the case of coniferous stands. Unsurprisingly, optimal growing-season (June-September) precipitation totals correspond with long-term average figures, while being slightly higher for spruce (at 384 mm), than for Scots pine or broadleaved species (375 mm). The relationships reported gain confirmation in analysis of periodic change in breast-height diameter increments characterising Scots pines, whose growth is seen to depend closely, not only on precipitation, but also above all on the depth of the water table in the summer half-year. Optimal depths of the water table proved to be different, being around 20 cm below ground in the case of marshy coniferous forest, 80 cm in wet habitats, and 135 cm in fresh habitats. Depending on the possibilities for water to soak

  8. Reproductive Compatibility of Prairie and Montane Populations of Dermacentor andersoni

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genetic analysis of a prairie and a montane population of Dermacentor andersoni (Stiles) indicated limited gene flow (Nm < 1) and a large amount of genetic differentiation (Fst = 0.49) between the populations. The prairie population also had a greater level of genetic diversity. Mating experiments...

  9. Habitat association, size, stomach contents, and reproductive condition of Puerto Rican boas (Epicrates inornatus)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wiley, J.W.

    2003-01-01

    The Puerto Rican boa occurs in a variety of habitats, including wet montane forest, lowland wet forest, mangrove forest, wet limestone karst, and offshore cays, and from sea level to 480 m. Mean SVL of 49 encountered boas (live and road-killed) was 136.9 ?? 35.1 (range = 38.8-205 cm), with a mean mass of 952.1 ?? 349.0 g (n = 47; range = 140-1662 g). Prey in digestive tracts (n = 29) included remains of black rats, house mice, three species of anoles, bats, common ground-doves, domestic fowl chicks, and invertebrates. Females were in reproductive condition in late April through mid-August and had an average brood size of 21.8 ?? 6.0 (n = 9, range = 13-30 ).

  10. Drought-induced oxidative stress in Canarian laurel forest tree species growing under controlled conditions.

    PubMed

    Sánchez-Díaz, Manuel; Tapia, Carolina; Antolín, M Carmen

    2007-10-01

    We studied photoprotection and antioxidative protection in the three major species of the Canarian laurel forest (Laurus azorica (Seub.) Franco, Persea indica (L.) K. Spreng and Myrica faya Aiton). Trees were exposed to drought under controlled conditions by withholding water until leaf relative water content (RWC) reached 50-55%. Drought reduced photosynthetic rate (P(N)) and was associated with decreased quantum yield of photosystem II (PSII) electron transport and increased non-photochemical quenching (NPQ) in L. azorica and M. faya, but did not increase NPQ in P. indica. Drought-treated trees of L. azorica had the highest de-epoxidation state (DPS) of the xanthophyll cycle and the highest zeaxanthin (Z) concentration, suggesting that this species had more effective photoprotective mechanisms than M. faya and P. indica. Moreover, beta-carotene remained unaltered in L. azorica trees during drought, suggesting that the chloroplasts of this species are better protected against oxidative stress than those of M. faya and P. indica. Increased antioxidation by ascorbate peroxidase, superoxide dismutase and glutathione reductase in L. azorica removed activated oxygen species (AOS) generated during drought treatment. Although M. faya was able to increase its energy dissipation rate by forming Z and thus increasing the DPS of the xanthophyll cycle, it did not respond to drought-induced oxidative stress with the result that beta-carotene degradation occurred. Persea indica did not activate an energy dissipation mechanism in response to drought treatment, hence formation of AOS was likely high in the drought-treated trees. In general, L. azorica was most resistant and P. indica most sensitive to photoinhibition and oxidative stress during drought.

  11. Ectomycorrhizal community structure of different genotypes of Scots pine under forest nursery conditions.

    PubMed

    Leski, Tomasz; Aucina, Algis; Skridaila, Audrius; Pietras, Marcin; Riepsas, Edvardas; Rudawska, Maria

    2010-10-01

    In this paper, we report the effect of Scots pine genotypes on ectomycorrhizal (ECM) community and growth, survival, and foliar nutrient composition of 2-year-old seedlings grown in forest bare-root nursery conditions in Lithuania. The Scots pine seeds originated from five stands from Latvia (P1), Lithuania (P2 and P3), Belarus (P4), and Poland (P5). Based on molecular identification, seven ECM fungal taxa were identified: Suillus luteus and Suillus variegatus (within the Suilloid type), Wilcoxina mikolae, Tuber sp., Thelephora terrestris, Cenococcum geophilum, and Russuloid type. The fungal species richness varied between five and seven morphotypes, depending on seed origin. The average species richness and relative abundance of most ECM morphotypes differed significantly depending on pine origin. The most essential finding of our study is the shift in dominance from an ascomycetous fungus like W. mikolae in P2 and P4 seedlings to basidiomycetous Suilloid species like S. luteus and S. variegatus in P1 and P5 seedlings. Significant differences between Scots pine origin were also found in seedling height, root dry weight, survival, and concentration of C, K, Ca, and Mg in the needles. The Spearman rank correlation coefficient revealed that survival and nutritional status of pine seedlings were positively correlated with abundance of Suilloid mycorrhizas and negatively linked with W. mikolae abundance. However, stepwise multiple regression analysis showed that only survival and magnesium content in pine needles were significantly correlated with abundance of ECM fungi, and Suilloid mycorrhizas were a main significant predictor. Our results may have implications for understanding the physiological and genetic relationship between the host tree and fungi and should be considered in management decisions in forestry and ECM fungus inoculation programs.

  12. Radiocarbon ages of terrestrial gastropods extend duration of ice-free conditions at the Two Creeks forest bed, Wisconsin, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rech, Jason A.; Nekola, Jeffrey C.; Pigati, Jeffrey S.

    2012-01-01

    Analysis of terrestrial gastropods that underlie the late Pleistocene Two Creeks forest bed (~ 13,800–13,500 cal yr BP) in eastern Wisconsin, USA provides evidence for a mixed tundra-taiga environment prior to formation of the taiga forest bed. Ten new AMS 14C analyses on terrestrial gastropod shells indicate the mixed tundra-taiga environment persisted from ~ 14,500 to 13,900 cal yr BP. The Twocreekan climatic substage, representing ice-free conditions on the shore of Lake Michigan, therefore began near the onset of peak warming conditions during the Bølling–Allerød interstadial and lasted ~ 1000 yr, nearly 600 yr longer than previously thought. These results provide important data for understanding the response of continental ice sheets to global climate forcing and demonstrate the potential of using terrestrial gastropod fossils for both environmental reconstruction and age control in late Quaternary sediments.

  13. Projecting the Hydrologic Impacts of Climate Change on Montane Wetlands.

    PubMed

    Lee, Se-Yeun; Ryan, Maureen E; Hamlet, Alan F; Palen, Wendy J; Lawler, Joshua J; Halabisky, Meghan

    2015-01-01

    Wetlands are globally important ecosystems that provide critical services for natural communities and human society. Montane wetland ecosystems are expected to be among the most sensitive to changing climate, as their persistence depends on factors directly influenced by climate (e.g. precipitation, snowpack, evaporation). Despite their importance and climate sensitivity, wetlands tend to be understudied due to a lack of tools and data relative to what is available for other ecosystem types. Here, we develop and demonstrate a new method for projecting climate-induced hydrologic changes in montane wetlands. Using observed wetland water levels and soil moisture simulated by the physically based Variable Infiltration Capacity (VIC) hydrologic model, we developed site-specific regression models relating soil moisture to observed wetland water levels to simulate the hydrologic behavior of four types of montane wetlands (ephemeral, intermediate, perennial, permanent wetlands) in the U. S. Pacific Northwest. The hybrid models captured observed wetland dynamics in many cases, though were less robust in others. We then used these models to a) hindcast historical wetland behavior in response to observed climate variability (1916-2010 or later) and classify wetland types, and b) project the impacts of climate change on montane wetlands using global climate model scenarios for the 2040s and 2080s (A1B emissions scenario). These future projections show that climate-induced changes to key driving variables (reduced snowpack, higher evapotranspiration, extended summer drought) will result in earlier and faster drawdown in Pacific Northwest montane wetlands, leading to systematic reductions in water levels, shortened wetland hydroperiods, and increased probability of drying. Intermediate hydroperiod wetlands are projected to experience the greatest changes. For the 2080s scenario, widespread conversion of intermediate wetlands to fast-drying ephemeral wetlands will likely reduce

  14. Projecting the Hydrologic Impacts of Climate Change on Montane Wetlands

    PubMed Central

    Hamlet, Alan F.; Palen, Wendy J.; Lawler, Joshua J.; Halabisky, Meghan

    2015-01-01

    Wetlands are globally important ecosystems that provide critical services for natural communities and human society. Montane wetland ecosystems are expected to be among the most sensitive to changing climate, as their persistence depends on factors directly influenced by climate (e.g. precipitation, snowpack, evaporation). Despite their importance and climate sensitivity, wetlands tend to be understudied due to a lack of tools and data relative to what is available for other ecosystem types. Here, we develop and demonstrate a new method for projecting climate-induced hydrologic changes in montane wetlands. Using observed wetland water levels and soil moisture simulated by the physically based Variable Infiltration Capacity (VIC) hydrologic model, we developed site-specific regression models relating soil moisture to observed wetland water levels to simulate the hydrologic behavior of four types of montane wetlands (ephemeral, intermediate, perennial, permanent wetlands) in the U. S. Pacific Northwest. The hybrid models captured observed wetland dynamics in many cases, though were less robust in others. We then used these models to a) hindcast historical wetland behavior in response to observed climate variability (1916–2010 or later) and classify wetland types, and b) project the impacts of climate change on montane wetlands using global climate model scenarios for the 2040s and 2080s (A1B emissions scenario). These future projections show that climate-induced changes to key driving variables (reduced snowpack, higher evapotranspiration, extended summer drought) will result in earlier and faster drawdown in Pacific Northwest montane wetlands, leading to systematic reductions in water levels, shortened wetland hydroperiods, and increased probability of drying. Intermediate hydroperiod wetlands are projected to experience the greatest changes. For the 2080s scenario, widespread conversion of intermediate wetlands to fast-drying ephemeral wetlands will likely reduce

  15. Classification of riparian forest species and health condition using multi-temporal and hyperspatial imagery from unmanned aerial system.

    PubMed

    Michez, Adrien; Piégay, Hervé; Lisein, Jonathan; Claessens, Hugues; Lejeune, Philippe

    2016-03-01

    Riparian forests are critically endangered many anthropogenic pressures and natural hazards. The importance of riparian zones has been acknowledged by European Directives, involving multi-scale monitoring. The use of this very-high-resolution and hyperspatial imagery in a multi-temporal approach is an emerging topic. The trend is reinforced by the recent and rapid growth of the use of the unmanned aerial system (UAS), which has prompted the development of innovative methodology. Our study proposes a methodological framework to explore how a set of multi-temporal images acquired during a vegetative period can differentiate some of the deciduous riparian forest species and their health conditions. More specifically, the developed approach intends to identify, through a process of variable selection, which variables derived from UAS imagery and which scale of image analysis are the most relevant to our objectives.The methodological framework is applied to two study sites to describe the riparian forest through two fundamental characteristics: the species composition and the health condition. These characteristics were selected not only because of their use as proxies for the riparian zone ecological integrity but also because of their use for river management.The comparison of various scales of image analysis identified the smallest object-based image analysis (OBIA) objects (ca. 1 m(2)) as the most relevant scale. Variables derived from spectral information (bands ratios) were identified as the most appropriate, followed by variables related to the vertical structure of the forest. Classification results show good overall accuracies for the species composition of the riparian forest (five classes, 79.5 and 84.1% for site 1 and site 2). The classification scenario regarding the health condition of the black alders of the site 1 performed the best (90.6%).The quality of the classification models developed with a UAS-based, cost-effective, and semi-automatic approach

  16. Local climatic conditions constrain soil yeast diversity patterns in Mediterranean forests, woodlands and scrub biome.

    PubMed

    Yurkov, Andrey M; Röhl, Oliver; Pontes, Ana; Carvalho, Cláudia; Maldonado, Cristina; Sampaio, José Paulo

    2016-02-01

    Soil yeasts represent a poorly known fraction of the soil microbiome due to limited ecological surveys. Here, we provide the first comprehensive inventory of cultivable soil yeasts in a Mediterranean ecosystem, which is the leading biodiversity hotspot for vascular plants and vertebrates in Europe. We isolated and identified soil yeasts from forested sites of Serra da Arrábida Natural Park (Portugal), representing the Mediterranean forests, woodlands and scrub biome. Both cultivation experiments and the subsequent species richness estimations suggest the highest species richness values reported to date, resulting in a total of 57 and 80 yeast taxa, respectively. These values far exceed those reported for other forest soils in Europe. Furthermore, we assessed the response of yeast diversity to microclimatic environmental factors in biotopes composed of the same plant species but showing a gradual change from humid broadleaf forests to dry maquis. We observed that forest properties constrained by precipitation level had strong impact on yeast diversity and on community structure and lower precipitation resulted in an increased number of rare species and decreased evenness values. In conclusion, the structure of soil yeast communities mirrors the environmental factors that affect aboveground phytocenoses, aboveground biomass and plant projective cover.

  17. Disturbance and topography shape nitrogen availability and δ15N over long-term forest succession

    EPA Science Inventory

    Forest disturbance and long-term succession can promote open N cycling that increases N loss and soil δ15N values. We examined soil and foliar patterns in N and δ15N, and soil N mineralization, across a topographically complex montane forest landscape influenced by human logging ...

  18. Color estimation of forest-steppe soils by digital photography under laboratory conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Valeeva, A. A.; Aleksandrova, A. B.; Koposov, G. F.

    2016-09-01

    Numerical values in the RGB, HSB, and L*a*b systems for the colors of structurally differentiated soils (Luvisols) in the Volga-Kama forest-steppe have been obtained using a digital camera. A high correlation has been revealed between the soil color and the content of humus in the range 0.39-6%. When the content of humus exceeds 6%, the color of humus horizon varies only slightly. A regression equation within the RRGB range from 85 to 173 has been calculated for the rapid determination of humus content in low- and medium-humus texturally differentiated soils of the Volga-Kama forest-steppe.

  19. Sequential Fragmentation of Pleistocene Forests in an East Africa Biodiversity Hotspot: Chameleons as a Model to Track Forest History

    PubMed Central

    Measey, G. John; Tolley, Krystal A.

    2011-01-01

    Background The Eastern Arc Mountains (EAM) is an example of naturally fragmented tropical forests, which contain one of the highest known concentrations of endemic plants and vertebrates. Numerous paleo-climatic studies have not provided direct evidence for ancient presence of Pleistocene forests, particularly in the regions in which savannah presently occurs. Knowledge of the last period when forests connected EAM would provide a sound basis for hypothesis testing of vicariance and dispersal models of speciation. Dated phylogenies have revealed complex patterns throughout EAM, so we investigated divergence times of forest fauna on four montane isolates in close proximity to determine whether forest break-up was most likely to have been simultaneous or sequential, using population genetics of a forest restricted arboreal chameleon, Kinyongia boehmei. Methodology/Principal Findings We used mitochondrial and nuclear genetic sequence data and mutation rates from a fossil-calibrated phylogeny to estimate divergence times between montane isolates using a coalescent approach. We found that chameleons on all mountains are most likely to have diverged sequentially within the Pleistocene from 0.93–0.59 Ma (95% HPD 0.22–1.84 Ma). In addition, post-hoc tests on chameleons on the largest montane isolate suggest a population expansion ∼182 Ka. Conclusions/Significance Sequential divergence is most likely to have occurred after the last of three wet periods within the arid Plio-Pleistocene era, but was not correlated with inter-montane distance. We speculate that forest connection persisted due to riparian corridors regardless of proximity, highlighting their importance in the region's historic dispersal events. The population expansion coincides with nearby volcanic activity, which may also explain the relative paucity of the Taita's endemic fauna. Our study shows that forest chameleons are an apposite group to track forest fragmentation, with the inference that forest

  20. Projecting the Local Impacts of Climate Change on a Central American Montane Avian Community

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gasner, Matthew R.; Jankowski, Jill E.; Ciecka, Anna L.; Kyle, Keiller O.; Rabenold, Kerry N.

    2010-01-01

    Significant changes in the climates of Central America are expected over the next century. Lowland rainforests harbor high alpha diversity on local scales (<1 km2), yet montane landscapes often support higher beta diversity on 10-100 km2 scales. Climate change will likely disrupt the altitudinal zonation of montane communities that produces such landscape diversity. Projections of biotic response to climate change have often used broad-scale modelling of geographical ranges, but understanding likely impacts on population viability is also necessary for anticipating local and global extinctions. We model species abundances and estimate range shifts for birds in the Tilaran Mountains of Costa Rica, asking whether projected changes in temperature and rainfall could be sufficient to imperil high-elevation endemics and whether these variables will likely impact communities similarly. We find that nearly half of 77 forest bird species can be expected to decline in the next century. Almost half of species projected to decline are endemic to Central America, and seven of eight species projected to become locally extinct are endemic to the highlands of Costa Rica and Panam . Logistic-regression modelling of distributions and similarity in projections produced by temperature and rainfall models suggest that changes in both variables will be important. Although these projections are probably conservative because they do not explicitly incorporate biological or climate variable interactions, they provide a starting point for incorporating more realistic biological complexity into community-change models. Prudent conservation planning for tropical mountains should focus on regions with room for altitudinal reorganization of communities comprised of ecological specialists.

  1. DNA Barcoding of an Assembly of Montane Andean Butterflies (Satyrinae): Geographical Scale and Identification Performance.

    PubMed

    Marín, M A; Cadavid, I C; Valdés, L; Álvarez, C F; Uribe, S I; Vila, R; Pyrcz, T W

    2017-01-23

    DNA barcoding is a technique used primarily for the documentation and identification of biological diversity based on mitochondrial DNA sequences. Butterflies have received particular attention in DNA barcoding studies, although varied performance may be obtained due to different scales of geographic sampling and speciation processes in various groups. The montane Andean Satyrinae constitutes a challenging study group for taxonomy. The group displays high richness, with more of 550 species, and remarkable morphological similarity among taxa, which renders their identification difficult. In the present study, we evaluated the effectiveness of DNA barcodes in the identification of montane Andean satyrines and the effect of increased geographical scale of sampling on identification performance. Mitochondrial sequences were obtained from 104 specimens of 39 species and 16 genera, collected in a forest remnant in the northwest Andes. DNA barcoding has proved to be a useful tool for the identification of the specimens, with a well-defined gap and producing clusters with unambiguous identifications for all the morphospecies in the study area. The expansion of the geographical scale with published data increased genetic distances within species and reduced those among species, but did not generally reduce the success of specimen identification. Only in Forsterinaria rustica (Butler, 1868), a taxon with high intraspecific variation, the barcode gap was lost and low support for monophyly was obtained. Likewise, expanded sampling resulted in a substantial increase in the intraspecific distance in Morpho sulkowskyi (Kollar, 1850); Panyapedaliodes drymaea (Hewitson, 1858); Lymanopoda obsoleta (Westwood, 1851); and Lymanopoda labda Hewitson, 1861; but for these species, the barcode gap was maintained. These divergent lineages are nonetheless worth a detailed study of external and genitalic morphology variation, as well as ecological features, in order to determine the potential

  2. Montane wetland water chemistry, Uinta Mountains, Utah

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Severson, K. S.; Matyjasik, M.; Ford, R. L.; Hernandez, M. W.; Welsh, S. B.; Summers, S.; Bartholomew, L. M.

    2009-12-01

    part of the watershed, gradually changing to bicarbonate in the lower part of the watershed. The creek water also show a relatively small increase in total dissolved solids from 10 mg/L in the upper basin to 18 mg/L in the lower basin. Dissolved oxygen, potassium, and chlorides also decrease along the creek flow path, while calcium and sulfates increase. Values of pH fluctuate more along the length of the channel as the creek receives water discharging from the wetlands. An interesting geomorphic characteristic of these montane wetlands is a distinctive compartmentalization by a system of peaty flarks and strings, typically oriented perpendicular to the direction of surface-water flow. Water samples collected from piezometers contain much higher concentrations of all ions compared to surface-water samples from the flarks. It is believed that deeper portions of the peat work as highly isolated flow cells, storing water for an extended period of time, resulting in locally increased ionic concentrations. Future work will attempt to clarify and test this hypothesis.

  3. Influence of climate on the presence of colour polymorphism in two montane reptile species

    PubMed Central

    Broennimann, Olivier; Ursenbacher, Sylvain; Meyer, Andreas; Golay, Philippe; Monney, Jean-Claude; Schmocker, Hans; Guisan, Antoine; Dubey, Sylvain

    2014-01-01

    The coloration of ectotherms plays an important role in thermoregulation processes. Dark individuals should heat up faster and be able to reach a higher body temperature than light individuals and should therefore have benefits in cool areas. In central Europe, montane local populations of adder (Vipera berus) and asp viper (Vipera aspis) exhibit a varying proportion of melanistic individuals. We tested whether the presence of melanistic V. aspis and V. berus could be explained by climatic conditions. We measured the climatic niche position and breadth of monomorphic (including strictly patterned individuals) and polymorphic local populations, calculated their niche overlap and tested for niche equivalency and similarity. In accordance with expectations, niche overlap between polymorphic local populations of both species is high, and even higher than that of polymorphic versus monomorphic montane local populations of V. aspis, suggesting a predominant role of melanism in determining the niche of ectothermic vertebrates. However, unexpectedly, the niche of polymorphic local populations of both species is narrower than that of monomorphic ones, indicating that colour polymorphism does not always enable the exploitation of a greater variability of resources, at least at the intraspecific level. Overall, our results suggest that melanism might be present only when the thermoregulatory benefit is higher than the cost of predation. PMID:25392313

  4. Influence of soil conditions on dissolved organic matter leached from forest and wetland soils: a controlled growth chamber study.

    PubMed

    Kim, Eun-Ah; Nguyen, Hang Vo-Minh; Oh, Hae Sung; Hur, Jin; Choi, Jung Hyun

    2016-03-01

    This study investigated the effects of various soil conditions, including drying-rewetting, nitrogen deposition, and temperature rise, on the quantities and the composition of dissolved organic matter leached from forest and wetland soils. A set of forest and wetland soils with and without the nitrogen deposition were incubated in the growth chambers under three different temperatures. The moisture contents were kept constant, except for two-week drying intervals. Comparisons between the original and the treated samples revealed that drying-rewetting was a crucial environmental factor driving changes in the amount of dissolved organic carbon (DOC). The DOC was also notably increased by the nitrogen deposition to the dry forest soil and was affected by the temperature of the dry wetland soil. A parallel factor (PARAFAC) analysis identified three sub-fractions of the fluorescent dissolved organic matter (FDOM) from the fluorescence excitation-emission matrices (EEMs), and their compositions depended on drying-rewetting. The data as a whole, including the DOC and PARAFAC components and other optical indices, were possibly explained by the two main variables, which were closely related with the PARAFAC components and DOC based on principal component analysis (PCA). Our results suggested that the DOC and PARAFAC component information could provide a comprehensive interpretation of the changes in the soil-leached DOM in response to the different environmental conditions.

  5. Variation in leaf litter production and resorption of nutrients in abundant tree species in Nyungwe tropical montane rainforest in Rwanda

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nyirambangutse, Brigitte; Mirindi Dusenge, Eric; Nsabimana, Donat; Bizuru, Elias; Pleijel, Håkan; Uddling, Johan; Wallin, Göran

    2014-05-01

    African tropical rainforests play many roles from local to global scale as providers of resources and ecosystem services. Although covering 30% of the global rainforest, only few studies aiming to better understand the storage and fluxes of carbon and nutrients in these forests have been conducted. To answer questions related to these issues, we have established 15 permanent 0.5 ha plots where we compare carbon and nutrient fluxes of primary and secondary forest tree communities in a tropical montane forest in central Africa. The studies are conducted in Nyungwe montane tropical rain forest gazetted as a National Park to protect its extensive floral and faunal diversity covering an area of 970 km2. Nyungwe is located in Southwest Rwanda (2o17'-2o50'S, 29o07'-29o26A'E). The forest is ranging between 1600-2950 m.a.s.l. and is one of the most biologically important rainforest in Albertine Rift region in terms of Biodiversity. Nyungwe consists of a mixture of primary and secondary forest communities supporting a richness of plant and animal life. More than 260 species of trees and shrubs have been found in Nyungwe, including species endemic to the Albertine Rift. The forest has a climate with a mean annual temperature of 15.5oC and annual rainfall of ca 1850 mm yr-1, with July and August being the only months when rainfall drops. A part of this study is focusing on the dynamics of nutrients through leaf turnover. This turnover of leaves is regulated to maximize the carbon gain through canopy photosynthesis and resource-use efficiency of the plant. It is known that about half of leaf nitrogen is invested in photosynthetic apparatus and that there normally is a strong correlation between the photosynthetic capacity and leaf nitrogen per unit area. Hence leaf nitrogen is an important factor for canopy photosynthesis. However, leaves are produced, senesce and fall. Some nitrogen in the leaf is lost when leaves senesce but other is resorbed. The resorption of nitrogen

  6. Retreating or Standing: Responses of Forest Species and Steppe Species to Climate Change in Arid Eastern Central Asia

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Hong-Xiang; Zhang, Ming-Li; Sanderson, Stewart C.

    2013-01-01

    Background The temperature in arid Eastern Central Asia is projected to increase in the future, accompanied by increased variability of precipitation. To investigate the impacts of climate change on plant species in this area, we selected two widespread species as candidates, Clematis sibirica and C. songorica, from montane coniferous forest and arid steppe habitats respectively. Methodology/Principal Findings We employed a combined approach of molecular phylogeography and species distribution modelling (SDM) to predict the future responses of these two species to climate change, utilizing evidence of responses from the past. Genetic data for C. sibirica shows a significant phylogeographical signal (NST > FST, P<0.05) and demographic contraction during the glacial-interglacial cycles in the Pleistocene. This forest species would likely experience range reduction, though without genetic loss, in the face of future climate change. In contrast, SDMs predict that C. songorica, a steppe species, should maintain a consistently stable potential distribution under the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) and the future climatic conditions referring to its existing potential distribution. Molecular results indicate that the presence of significant phylogeographical signal in this steppe species is rejected and this species contains a high level of genetic differentiation among populations in cpDNA, likely benefiting from stable habitats over a lengthy time period. Conclusions/Significance Evidence from the molecular phylogeography of these two species, the forest species is more sensitive to past climate changes than the steppe species. SDMs predict that the forest species will face the challenge of potential range contraction in the future more than the steppe species. This provides a perspective on ecological management in arid Eastern Central Asia, indicating that increased attention should be paid to montane forest species, due to their high sensitivity to disturbance. PMID

  7. Evaluating the condition of a mangrove forest of the Mexican Pacific based on an estimated leaf area index mapping approach.

    PubMed

    Kovacs, J M; King, J M L; Flores de Santiago, F; Flores-Verdugo, F

    2009-10-01

    Given the alarming global rates of mangrove forest loss it is important that resource managers have access to updated information regarding both the extent and condition of their mangrove forests. Mexican mangroves in particular have been identified as experiencing an exceptional high annual rate of loss. However, conflicting studies, using remote sensing techniques, of the current state of many of these forests may be hindering all efforts to conserve and manage what remains. Focusing on one such system, the Teacapán-Agua Brava-Las Haciendas estuarine-mangrove complex of the Mexican Pacific, an attempt was made to develop a rapid method of mapping the current condition of the mangroves based on estimated LAI. Specifically, using an AccuPAR LP-80 Ceptometer, 300 indirect in situ LAI measurements were taken at various sites within the black mangrove (Avicennia germinans) dominated forests of the northern section of this system. From this sample, 225 measurements were then used to develop linear regression models based on their relationship with corresponding values derived from QuickBird very high resolution optical satellite data. Specifically, regression analyses of the in situ LAI with both the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) and the simple ration (SR) vegetation index revealed significant positive relationships [LAI versus NDVI (R (2) = 0.63); LAI versus SR (R (2) = 0.68)]. Moreover, using the remaining sample, further examination of standard errors and of an F test of the residual variances indicated little difference between the two models. Based on the NDVI model, a map of estimated mangrove LAI was then created. Excluding the dead mangrove areas (i.e. LAI = 0), which represented 40% of the total 30.4 km(2) of mangrove area identified in the scene, a mean estimated LAI value of 2.71 was recorded. By grouping the healthy fringe mangrove with the healthy riverine mangrove and by grouping the dwarf mangrove together with the poor condition

  8. Differential winter stemflow generation under contrasting storm conditions in a southern New England broad-leaved deciduous forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Levia, Delphis F., Jr.

    2004-04-01

    Despite the importance of stemflow as a hydroecological process, differential winter stemflow generation among and within precipitation types (e.g. snow, rain-to-snow) is poorly understood. The purpose of the present study is to understand winter stemflow generation better under contrasting meteorological conditions in a leafless deciduous forest. It is hypothesized that stemflow volume and production, expressed as a funnelling ratio, will differ significantly among and within precipitation event types. Acceptance of this hypothesis would mean that intra-event meteorological conditions have a significant and discernible effect on stemflow production in deciduous forests, differentially affecting soil moisture, groundwater recharge, soil solution chemistry, and nutrient cycling. Stemflow volumes generated from seven canopy trees were monitored in a leafless deciduous forest of southern New England on a precipitation event basis over two successive winter seasons. Stemflow volume was found to differ significantly among different and same-type precipitation events. A rain event that occurred on 8 December 1998 and snow-to-rain event on 18 January 1999 were of similar duration, magnitude, and intensity, yet produced stemflow volumes that differed by a factor of 4. For two snow-to-rain events, stemflow volumes differed by a factor of 11. Stemflow production even varies widely within a discrete precipitation event as a function of meteorological conditions. Significant differential stemflow yield under contrasting storm conditions obviates generalizations concerning stemflow production as a function of precipitation event type and necessitates a deeper, process-level understanding of winter stemflow generation before modelling exercises are undertaken.

  9. Endemic and exotic tropical forests of Réunion Island observed by airborne lidar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shang, Xiaoxia; Chazette, Patrick; Totems, Julien; Dieudonné, Elsa; Hamonou, Eric; Duflot, Valentin; Strasberg, Dominique; Flores, Olivier; Fournel, Jacques; Tulet, Pierre

    2015-04-01

    Tropical forests are vital ecosystems widely threatened across the globe and yet remain the most difficult forest type to document. They are strongly perturbed by anthropogenic activities, which lead to coexistence of endemic and exotic tree species. We present an experiment performed over Réunion Island in May 2014, on sites ranging from coastal to rain forest, including tropical montane cloud forest as found on the Bélouve plateau. Réunion Island is home to the last remnants of primary tropical forest in the Mascarene archipelago, and still shelters significant biodiversity. Three key ecological parameters have been extracted from the lidar measurements: the canopy height (CH), the forest leaf area index (LAI) and the apparent foliage profile. The mean values of estimated LAI are between ~5 and 8 m2/m2 and the mean CH values are ~15 m for both tropical montane cloud and rain forests. Good agreement is found between Lidar- and MODIS-derived LAI for moderate LAI, but the LAI retrieved from lidar is larger than MODIS on rain forest sites (~8 against ~6 m2/m2 from MODIS). Regarding the characterization of tropical biomes, we show that the rain and montane tropical forests can be well distinguished from the planted forests by the use of the three ecological parameters retrieved, as the endemic and exotic forests can also be well distinguished.

  10. [Clonal plasticity of Iris japonica under different soil and canopy conditions in subtropocal evergreen broad-leaved forest].

    PubMed

    He, Yue-Jun; Han, Wen-Ping; Zhong, Zhang-Cheng

    2011-02-01

    An investigation was made on the growth indices of Iris japonica growing on the yellow soil and Karst soil within a subtropical evergreen broad-leaved forest and in the forest gaps, aimed to approach the clonal plasticity of I. japonica in heterogeneous habitats. The results showed that the ramet height and diameter and the rhizome diameter of I. japonica were significantly higher in yellow soil habitat than in Karst soil habitat, while the individual density was in adverse. Light had significant effects on rhizome diameter, but soil condition had lesser effects under the same light environment. Within the forest of Karst soil habitat, the bud number and flower number of I. japonica were zero, possibly due to the double pressure from soil quality and light environment for the balance between resources uptake and energy assignment and for the sustaining of growth. In a certain extent, I. japonica in yellow soil habitat tended to K strategy via decreasing the individual number for improving competition to adapt environment, while I. japonica in Karst soil habitat tended to r strategy via increasing individual number for sustaining competition capability.

  11. Limitations to seedling establishment in a mesic Hawaiian forest.

    PubMed

    Denslow, Julie S; Uowolo, Amanda L; Hughes, R Flint

    2006-05-01

    While invasive species may be visible indicators of plant community degradation, they may not constitute the only, or even the primary, limitation to stand regeneration. We used seed-augmentation and grass-removal experiments under different canopy conditions to assess the relative importance of dispersal limitation, resource availability, and competition on seedling establishment in the understory shrubs Sophora chrysophilla, Dodonea viscosa, and Pipturus albidus in a montane mesic forest in Hawaii. The study location was an Acacia koa-Metrosideros polymorpha forest at 1000-1500 m elevation on the leeward side of Hawaii Island; it is a closed-canopy forest historically subject to logging and grazing by cattle and sheep and currently dominated by the exotic grass, Ehrharta stipoides, in the herb layer. Seedling establishment after 1 and 2 years was strongly dispersal limited in Sophora and Dodonea, but not in Acacia, a non-augmented species in which abundant seedlings established, nor in Pipterus, in which only one seedling established in 2 years. Grass cover reduced seedling establishment in Acacia, Sophora, and Dodonea and, for the latter two species, seedling establishment was substantially greater in the warmer, more moist forest at the lowest elevation. Light, moisture, and resin-captured N and P were more strongly affected by elevation and canopy composition than by grass cover, but in most cases seedling establishment was not positively correlated with resource availability. Limitations to the establishment of woody seedlings in this forest-grassland mixture vary among species; however, both dispersal limitation and competition from a shade-tolerant grass are important deterrents to regeneration in these forests.

  12. Impacts of anthropogenic emissions and cold air pools on urban to montane gradients of snowpack ion concentrations in the Wasatch Mountains, Utah

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hall, Steven J.; Maurer, Gregory; Hoch, Sebastian W.; Taylor, Raili; Bowling, David R.

    2014-12-01

    Urban montane valleys are often characterized by periodic wintertime temperature inversions (cold air pools) that increase atmospheric particulate matter concentrations, potentially stimulating the deposition of major ions to these snow-covered ecosystems. We assessed spatial and temporal patterns of ion concentrations in snow across urban to montane gradients in Salt Lake City, Utah, USA, and the adjacent Wasatch Mountains during January 2011, a period of several persistent cold air pools. Ion concentrations in fresh snow samples were greatest in urban sites, and were lower by factors of 4-130 in a remote high-elevation montane site. Adjacent undeveloped canyons experienced significant incursions of particulate-rich urban air during stable atmospheric conditions, where snow ion concentrations were lower but not significantly different from urban sites. Surface snow ion concentrations on elevation transects in and adjacent to Salt Lake City varied with temporal and spatial trends in aerosol concentrations, increasing following exposure to particulate-rich air as cold air pools developed, and peaking at intermediate elevations (1500-1600 m above sea level, or 200-300 m above the valley floor). Elevation trends in ion concentrations, especially NH4+ and NO3-, corresponded with patterns of aerosol exposure inferred from laser ceilometer data, suggesting that high particulate matter concentrations stimulated fog or dry ion deposition to snow-covered surfaces at the top of the cold air pools. Fog/dry deposition inputs were similar to wet deposition at mid-elevation montane sites, but appeared negligible at lower and higher-elevation sites. Overall, snow ion concentrations in our urban and adjacent montane sites exceeded many values reported from urban precipitation in North America, and greatly exceeded those reported for remote snowpacks. Sodium, Cl-, NH4+, and NO3- concentrations in fresh snow were high relative to previously measured urban precipitation, with means

  13. Effect of redox conditions on bacterial and fungal biomass and carbon dioxide production in Louisiana coastal swamp forest sediment.

    PubMed

    Seo, Dong Cheol; DeLaune, Ronald D

    2010-08-01

    Fungal and bacterial carbon dioxide (CO2) production/emission was determined under a range of redox conditions in sediment from a Louisiana swamp forest used for wastewater treatment. Sediment was incubated in microcosms at 6 Eh levels (-200, -100, 0, +100, +250 and +400 mV) covering the anaerobic range found in wetland soil and sediment. Carbon dioxide production was determined by the substrate-induced respiration (SIR) inhibition method. Cycloheximide (C15H23NO4) was used as the fungal inhibitor and streptomycin (C21H39N7O12) as the bacterial inhibitor. Under moderately reducing conditions (Eh > +250 mV), fungi contributed more than bacteria to the CO2 production. Under highly reducing conditions (Eh < or = 0 mV), bacteria contributed more than fungi to the total CO2 production. The fungi/bacteria (F/B) ratios varied between 0.71-1.16 for microbial biomass C, and 0.54-0.94 for microbial biomass N. Under moderately reducing conditions (Eh > or = +100 mV), the F/B ratios for microbial biomass C and N were higher than that for highly reducing conditions (Eh < or = 0 mV). In moderately reducing conditions (Eh > or = +100 mV), the C/N microbial biomass ratio for fungi (C/N: 13.54-14.26) was slightly higher than for bacteria (C/N: 9.61-12.07). Under highly reducing redox conditions (Eh < or = 0 mV), the C/N microbial biomass ratio for fungi (C/N: 10.79-12.41) was higher than for bacteria (C/N: 8.21-9.14). For bacteria and fungi, the C/N microbial biomass ratios under moderately reducing conditions were higher than that in highly reducing conditions. Fungal CO2 production from swamp forest could be of greater ecological significance under moderately reducing sediment conditions contributing to the greenhouse effect (GHE) and the global warming potential (GWP). However, increases in coastal submergence associated with global sea level rise and resultant decrease in sediment redox potential from increased flooding would likely shift CO2 production to bacteria rather than

  14. Nesting Ecology of a Small Montane Population of the Nigerian/Cameroon Chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes ellioti) in Nigeria.

    PubMed

    Dutton, Paul; Moltchanova, Elena; Chapman, Hazel

    2016-01-01

    Understanding nest site choice by chimpanzees has implications for ecology, anthropology, and in the collection of census data, yet it remains controversial. Here we provide the first information on environmental factors affecting nest site choice in a montane population of the rare and relatively understudied Nigerian/Cameroon chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes ellioti) in Ngel Nyaki Forest Reserve, Nigeria. The forest is small, isolated, and visited by researchers, community members, and hunters. We also tested the hypothesis that people (researchers) walking along forest trails collecting data on a regular basis since 2005 will have changed nesting behaviour in the vicinity of the trails. Along the trails searched for nests, the chimpanzees used a subset of 35 (28.5%) of all available tree species. The top 5 nest tree species represented 16% of all non-nest tree species. The nest trees were on steeper than average slopes and the trees themselves were shorter and had a smaller DBH (diameter at breast height) than trees without nests. We found no evidence to suggest a change in nesting behaviour along trails compared with off trails; however, the average nest height today is considerably higher than it was in 2004, which may indicate a change in behaviour across the whole forest.

  15. Monitoring of environmental conditions in the Alaskan forests using ERS-1 SAR data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rignot, Eric; Way, Jobea; Mcdonald, Kyle; Viereck, Leslie; Adams, Phyllis

    1992-01-01

    Preliminary results from an analysis of the multitemporal radar backscatter signatures of tree species acquired by European Remote Sensing Satellite (ERS-1) synthetic aperture radar (SAR) data are presented. Significant changes in radar backscatter are detected. Correlation of these differences with ground truth observations indicate that these are due to changes in soil and liquid water content as a result of freeze/thaw events. C-band observations acquired by the NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory Airborne SAR (JPL AIRSAR) instrument demonstrate the potential of a C-band radar instrument to monitor drought/flood events. The potential of ERS-1 for monitoring phenologic changes in the forest and for classifying tree species is less promising.

  16. Attaining the canopy in dry and moist tropical forests: strong differences in tree growth trajectories reflect variation in growing conditions

    PubMed Central

    Zuidema, Pieter A.; Martínez-Ramos, Miguel

    2009-01-01

    Availability of light and water differs between tropical moist and dry forests, with typically higher understorey light levels and lower water availability in the latter. Therefore, growth trajectories of juvenile trees—those that have not attained the canopy—are likely governed by temporal fluctuations in light availability in moist forests (suppressions and releases), and by spatial heterogeneity in water availability in dry forests. In this study, we compared juvenile growth trajectories of Cedrela odorata in a dry (Mexico) and a moist forest (Bolivia) using tree rings. We tested the following specific hypotheses: (1) moist forest juveniles show more and longer suppressions, and more and stronger releases; (2) moist forest juveniles exhibit wider variation in canopy accession pattern, i.e. the typical growth trajectory to the canopy; (3) growth variation among dry forest juveniles persists over longer time due to spatial heterogeneity in water availability. As expected, the proportion of suppressed juveniles was higher in moist than in dry forest (72 vs. 17%). Moist forest suppressions also lasted longer (9 vs. 5 years). The proportion of juveniles that experienced releases in moist forest (76%) was higher than in dry forest (41%), and releases in moist forests were much stronger. Trees in the moist forest also had a wider variation in canopy accession patterns compared to the dry forest. Our results also showed that growth variation among juvenile trees persisted over substantially longer periods of time in dry forest (>64 years) compared to moist forest (12 years), most probably because of larger persistent spatial variation in water availability. Our results suggest that periodic increases in light availability are more important for attaining the canopy in moist forests, and that spatial heterogeneity in water availability governs long-term tree growth in dry forests. Electronic supplementary material The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s

  17. Lithology controls the regional distribution and morphological diversity of montane Mediterranean badlands in the upper Llobregat basin (eastern Pyrenees)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moreno-de las Heras, Mariano; Gallart, Francesc

    2016-11-01

    Badlands are pervasive in a wide range of environmental conditions across the Mediterranean region, including arid, semiarid, and humid environments. On montane (cold subhumid and humid) Mediterranean landscapes, harsh thermal conditions on north-facing hillslopes favour intense bedrock weathering by freezing and impose serious constraints on plant colonization. The above are the customary arguments to explain the high abundance of montane badlands on north-exposed shady aspects. We studied the distribution and morphological diversity of badlands in the upper Llobregat basin (Catalan Pyrenees, NE Spain), using remote sensing information (high-resolution orthophotos and complementary Landsat 8 imagery), digital elevation data, and regional information on lithology. Badlands extend over about 200 ha in the upper Llobregat basin and occur on two different parent materials, swelling (smectite-rich) continental Garumnian lutites of late Cretaceous age, and nonswelling (illitic) marine Eocene marls. Vegetation, assessed by remote-sensed vegetation greenness, is less developed on north-facing badland slopes. However, badland slope-aspect distribution varies considerably with lithology. While badlands on Eocene marls show preferential distribution on north-facing shady slopes, badland occurrence on Garumnian lutites does not reveal clear slope-aspect anisotropy patterns. Lithology also affects slope gradient, with badlands on Eocene marls showing rougher topography (30-40° average slope angle) than on Garumnian lutites (20-30°). Badland morphological differences induced by lithology are discussed in terms of the greater weathering susceptibility and slope instability of the swelling, smectite-rich Garumnian lutites than of the nonswelling Eocene marls. Elevation, which broadly controls annual precipitation and winter air temperature within the region, shows no clear influence on badland distribution. Overall, our results reveal lithology as the main factor controlling

  18. Present condition of the coniferous undergrowth of forest-tundra ecotone of North-Chuya ridge (Central Altai)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Propastilova, Olga; Timoshok, Elena

    2010-05-01

    Investigations of high-mountain regions which are characterized by extreme climate conditions are of current importance since the response of environmental ecosystems to climate changes is clearly expressed there. The work presented was performed on the territory of two mountain glacial basins located on the northern macroslope of North-Chuya ridge (Russia, Central Altai). High-mountain vegetation of the area being considered didn't undergo an anthropogenic impact. It should be noted that investigations of coniferous undergrowth of forest-tundra ecotone of Aktru and Korumdu mountain glacial basins (2200-2500 m ab. s.l.) haven't been conducted before. A climatic representativeness of Aktru basin was proved by numerous data (Tronov et all, 1965, Sevastianov, 1998). The goal of the work was studying of condition and adaptations of young Pinus sibirica Du Tour and Larix sibirica Ledeb. to forest-tundra ecotone conditions. These species form the treeline on many ridges of Central Altai (Kuminova, 1960), including North-Chuya (Timoshok, 2004). It is shown that the number of young Siberian stone pines and larches in the forest-tundra ecotone is not big, Siberian stone pine being found more often than larch. A considerable quantity of young Siberian stone pines grows in sheltered sites (near big stones, boulders, stumps, etc.). During the research period dead young trees have been found in single cases. The maximum percentage of Siberian stone pine trees (42.4%) growing in sheltered sites was registered in Aktru basin on the east-southeast slope whereas on the west-northwest slope the maximum percentage of Siberian stone pines growing in clusters has been revealed (34.4%). Also on the west-northwest slope the maximum quantity of Siberian stone pines that changed their terminal shoots have been found (62.5%). During the investigation young trees with signs of diseases were registered. Chermes (Pineus cembrae Chol.) has been found on shoots and needles. On the west

  19. Modelling changes in nitrogen cycling to sustain increases in forest productivity under elevated atmospheric CO2 and contrasting site conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grant, R. F.

    2013-11-01

    If increases in net primary productivity (NPP) caused by rising concentrations of atmospheric CO2 (Ca) are to be sustained, key N processes such as soil mineralization, biological fixation, root uptake and nutrient conservation must also be increased. Simulating the response of these processes to elevated Ca is therefore vital for models used to project the effects of rising Ca on NPP. In this modelling study, hypotheses are proposed for changes in soil mineralization, biological fixation, root nutrient uptake and plant nutrient conservation with changes in Ca. Algorithms developed from these hypotheses were tested in the ecosystem model ecosys against changes in N and C cycling measured over several years under ambient vs. elevated Ca in Free Air CO2 Enrichment (FACE) experiments in the USA at the Duke Forest in North Carolina, the Oak Ridge National Laboratory forest in Tennessee, and the USDA research forest in Wisconsin. More rapid soil N mineralization was found to be vital for simulating sustained increases in NPP measured under elevated vs. ambient Ca at all three FACE sites. This simulation was accomplished by priming decomposition of N-rich humus from increases in microbial biomass generated by increased litterfall modelled under elevated Ca. Greater nonsymbiotic N2 fixation from increased litterfall, root N uptake from increased root growth, and plant N conservation from increased translocation under elevated Ca were found to make smaller contributions to simulated increases in NPP. However greater nutrient conservation enabled larger increases in NPP with Ca to be modelled with coniferous vs. deciduous plant functional types. The effects of these processes on productivity now need to be examined over longer periods under transient rises in Ca and a greater range of site conditions.

  20. Modelling changes in nitrogen cycling to sustain increases in forest productivity under elevated atmospheric CO2 and contrasting site conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grant, R. F.

    2013-04-01

    If increases in net primary productivity (NPP) caused by rising concentrations of atmospheric CO2 (Ca) are to be sustained, key N processes such as soil mineralization, biological fixation, root uptake and plant translocation must be hastened. Simulating the response of these processes to elevated Ca is therefore vital for models used to project the effects of rising Ca on NPP. In this modelling study, hypotheses are proposed for changes in soil mineralization, biological fixation, root uptake and plant translocation with changes in Ca. Algorithms developed from these hypotheses were tested in the ecosystem model ecosys against changes in N and C cycling measured over several years under ambient vs. elevatedCa in Free Air CO2 Enrichment (FACE) experiments at the Duke Forest in North Carolina, the Oak Ridge National Laboratory forest in Tennessee, and the USDA research forest in Wisconsin, USA. Simulating more rapid soil N mineralization was found to be vital for modelling sustained increases in NPP measured under elevated vs. ambient Ca at all three FACE sites. This simulation was accomplished by priming decomposition of N-rich humus from increases in microbial biomass generated by increased litterfall modelled under elevated Ca. Simulating more rapid nonsymbiotic N2 fixation, root N uptake and plant N translocation under elevated Ca was found to make much smaller contributions to modelled increases in NPP, although such contributions might be greater over longer periods and under more N-limited conditions than those simulated here. Greater increases in NPP with Ca were also modelled with increased temperature and water stress, and with coniferous vs. deciduous plant functional types. These increases were also associated with changes in N cycling.

  1. The role of fleshy pericarp in seed germination and dispersal under flooded conditions in three wetland forest species

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mora, Juan P.; Smith-Ramírez, Cecilia; Zúñiga-Feest, Alejandra

    2013-01-01

    In flooded habitats, inundations affect important forest regeneration processes, such as seed dispersal and germination. The main seed dispersal mechanism used by species in Austral South American temperate swamp and riparian forests is endozoochory, which releases seeds from the fleshy pericarp. Endozoochory could be favorable or unfavorable in wetland habitats, since this mechanism exposes seeds directly to water and can, in some cases, be detrimental to germination. In this study, we studied whether or not the fleshy pericarp favors germination after the flooding period's end. Furthermore, we quantified if the number of days which the fruit was found to be floating related to its germination success. We used the seeds of three common fleshy fruit species of flooded habitats from southern Chile, the trees Luma apiculata and Rhaphithamnus spinosus, and the vine Luzuriaga radicans. We simulated flooding periods of 7, 15, 30 and 45 days submerging seeds, with and without pericarps, in water. We found that the pericarp's presence significantly increased Luma's germination success and significantly decreased that of Luzuriaga. The germination of Rhaphithamnus was low after periods of flooding in both seed treatments, with no significant differences found between them. The fruits could float for an average of one to four weeks, depending on the species, which did not relate to their germination success. These results show that germination was affected by the presence of fleshy pericarps in flooded conditions and furthermore, that flotation allows for hydrochory from one week to one month. We suggest that in swamp forests multiple seed dispersal mechanisms are advantageous, especially for fleshy-fruited species.

  2. Sun/shade conditions affect recruitment and local adaptation of a columnar cactus in dry forests

    PubMed Central

    Miranda-Jácome, Antonio; Montaña, Carlos; Fornoni, Juan

    2013-01-01

    Background and Aims Facilitation among plants in water-limited environments (i.e. where evapotranspiration overcomes the availability of water during the growing season) has been considered a local adaptation to water and light conditions. Among cacti, early life-history stages can benefit from the facilitative effects of nurse plants that reduce solar radiation and water stress. However, whether light condition itself acts as an agent of selection through facilitation remains untested. The aim of this study was to determine (1) whether light conditions affect seedling recruitment, (2) whether the positive effect of shade on seedling recruitment is more intense under more stressful conditions and (3) whether shade condition (facilitation) reduces the magnitude of local adaptation on seedling recruitment relative to full sunlight conditions. Methods A reciprocal transplant experiment, coupled with the artificial manipulation of sun/shade conditions, was performed to test for the effects of local adaptation on germination, seedling survival and growth, using two demes of the columnar cactus Pilosocereus leucocephalus, representing different intensities of stressful conditions. Key Results Full sunlight conditions reduced recruitment success and supported the expectation of lower recruitment in more stressful environments. Significant local adaptation was mainly detected under full sunlight conditions, indicating that this environmental factor acts as an agent of selection at both sites. Conclusions The results supported the expectation that the magnitude of local adaptation, driven by the effects of facilitative nurse plants, is less intense under reduced stressful conditions. This study is the first to demonstrate that sun/shade conditions act as a selective agent accounting for local adaptation in water-limited environments, and that facilitation provided by nurse plants in these environments can attenuate the patterns of local adaptation among plants benefiting

  3. Large-scale Altitudinal and Latitudinal Variability of Vegetation Phenology in a Tropical Montane Landscape: A Remote Sensing Perspective

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Streher, A. S.; Sobreiro, J. F. F.; Morellato, P.; Silva, T. S. F.

    2015-12-01

    Mountain ecosystems are particularly vulnerable to climatic change, given the reduced potential of species to disperse uphill. Studies have been concentrated at higher latitudes, and relatively little is known about montane vegetation and ecosystem dynamics in tropical mountains. We assessed climatic, latitudinal and altitudinal effects on leafing phenology for the Espinhaço Range, a South American tropical mountain landscape comprised of a mosaic of savannas, grasslands, rock outcrops, cloud forests, and semi-deciduous to deciduous forests. We assessed a time series of 884 MODIS/NDVI images acquired between 2002 and 2015, at 7-day intervals. We classified broad vegetation types based on elevation (SRTM) and the mean and variance of each pixel in the entire series. We then extracted the phenological indicators of start, end and length of the growing season, green-up and brown-down rates, NDVI peak, and integral of the growing curve, using the TIMESAT algorithm. We also obtained precipitation data from the TRMM dataset, and calculated the Topographic Wetness Index and clear-sky radiation budgets based on the SRTM dataset. Our results show that the start of the growing season was noticeably more variable than the end date, suggesting that season length is an important factor for tropical montane vegetation. The start of the growing season decreased linearly with altitude, with vegetation at higher elevations having a later start, while no clear relation was found for the end of season. For montane vegetation above 800m, we observed shorter season lengths. Green-up rates were higher in woody seasonal formations, and became progressively slower with increasing altitudes. Higher green-up rates were also associated with rainfall patterns, where dry seasons are longer. Brown-down rates had the opposite trend, with rapid brown-down at higher altitudes. Our results quantify previously unreported seasonal, latitudinal and altitudinal variations in vegetation phenology for a

  4. Effects of Increased Nitrogen Availability on C and N Cycles in Tropical Forests: A Meta-Analysis.

    PubMed

    Bejarano-Castillo, Marylin; Campo, Julio; Roa-Fuentes, Lilia L

    2015-01-01

    Atmospheric N deposition is predicted to increase four times over its current status in tropical forests by 2030. Our ability to understand the effects of N enrichment on C and N cycles is being challenged by the large heterogeneity of the tropical forest biome. The specific response will depend on the forest's nutrient status; however, few studies of N addition appear to incorporate the nutrient status in tropical forests, possibly due to difficulties in explaining how this status is maintained. We used a meta-analysis to explore the consequences of the N enrichment on C and N cycles in tropical montane and lowland forests. We tracked changes in aboveground and belowground plant C and N and in mineral soil in response to N addition. We found an increasing trend of plant biomass in montane forests, but not in lowland forests, as well as a greater increase in NO emission in montane forest compared with lowland forest. The N2O and NO emission increase in both forest; however, the N2O increase in lowland forest was significantly even at first time N addition. The NO emission increase showed be greater at first term compared with long term N addition. Moreover, the increase in total soil N, ammonium, microbial N, and dissolved N concentration under N enrichment indicates a rich N status of lowland forests. The available evidence of N addition experiments shows that the lowland forest is richer in N than montane forests. Finally, the greater increase in N leaching and N gas emission highlights the importance of study the N deposition effect on the global climate change.

  5. Effectiveness of rodent control and monitoring techniques for a montane rainforest

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nelson, Jay T.; Woodworth, Bethany L.; Fancy, Steven G.; Lindsey, Gerald D.; Tweed, Eric J.

    2002-01-01

    Introduced black (Rattus rattus) and Polynesian (R. exulans) rats are damaging to native birds, insects, and plants in island ecosystems. We controlled rodent populations in a montane rainforest on the island of Hawaii to determine feasibility, cost, and effectiveness of ground-based rodent control in a rugged, remote rainforest habitat. Treatment was conducted 1996-99, from January to April each year, using rodenticide bait stations and snap-traps. We monitored rodent numbers in 48-ha treatment and reference areas before, during, and after control. As indexed by presence of rat sign in tracking tunnels or census blocks, rodent control reduced rodent abundance 58-90% each year 1 month after treatment began. There was an influx of rats into the treatment area, as shown by higher than expected numbers of rats snap-trapped on the treatment perimeter. Rodent numbers recovered to approximate pretreatment levels by the beginning of the following treatment year. Coast of equipment and supplies for rodent control for the first year was about \\$7,000 for a 1-km2 grid. After the first year, cost decreased to about \\$2,000 for 1 km2 per year. Rodent control applied continuously for 4 months each year during the breeding season may be effective in protecting nesting forest birds, but will not provide protection to plants and invertebrates vulnerable to predation throughout the year, and it is not likely to protect avian food resources.

  6. How does litter quality affect the community of soil protists (testate amoebae) of tropical montane rainforests?

    PubMed

    Krashevska, Valentyna; Maraun, Mark; Scheu, Stefan

    2012-06-01

    Litter quality and diversity are major factors structuring decomposer communities. However, little is known on the relationship between litter quality and the community structure of soil protists in tropical forests. We analyzed the diversity, density, and community structure of a major group of soil protists of tropical montane rainforests, that is, testate amoebae. Litterbags containing pure and mixed litter of two abundant tree species at the study sites (Graffenrieda emarginata and Purdiaea nutans) differing in nitrogen concentrations were exposed in the field for 12 months. The density and diversity of testate amoebae were higher in the nitrogen-rich Graffenrieda litter suggesting that nitrogen functions as an important driving factor for soil protist communities. No additive effects of litter mixing were found, rather density of testate amoebae was reduced in litter mixtures as compared to litterbags with Graffenrieda litter only. However, adding of high-quality litter to low-quality litter markedly improved habitat quality, as evaluated by the increase in diversity and density of testate amoebae. The results suggest that local factors, such as litter quality, function as major forces shaping the structure and density of decomposer microfauna that likely feed back to decomposition processes.

  7. Evaluation of the airborne imaging spectrometer for remote sensing of forest stand conditions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Olson, Charles E., Jr.

    1986-01-01

    Five pairs of plots were established in forest stands with one of each pair trenched and covered to prevent precipitation from reaching the tree roots. High winds and falling limbs destroyed the covers on three of the plots. The two remaining plots were in a red pine plantation and in a natural stand of sugar maple. Trees in both plots developed levels of moisture stress more than nine bars higher than control trees on the dates of overflights with the Airborne Imaging Spectrometer (AIS) and the Collins' Airborne Spectroradiometer (CAS). Hemispherical reflectance from stressed and control trees was measured with a Beckman DK2A spectrophotometer. On the day of the AIS overflight, stressed maple foliage was less reflective than the control from 1000 to 1300 nm, but more reflective at wavelengths longer than 1300 nm. Pine foliage was less reflective than the control from 1000 to 1600 nm, but the difference was small at wavelengths longer than 1350 nm. AIS data collected showed brightness values for both maple and pine to be lower than for the controls from 1000 to 1300 nm. CAS data were used to determine the gain in species identification accuracy obtainable with high spectral resolution data.

  8. Rotenone persistence model for montane streams

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Brown, Peter J.; Zale, Alexander V.

    2012-01-01

    The efficient and effective use of rotenone is hindered by its unknown persistence in streams. Environmental conditions degrade rotenone, but current label instructions suggest fortifying the chemical along a stream based on linear distance or travel time rather than environmental conditions. Our objective was to develop models that use measurements of environmental conditions to predict rotenone persistence in streams. Detailed measurements of ultraviolet radiation, water temperature, dissolved oxygen, total dissolved solids (TDS), conductivity, pH, oxidation–reduction potential (ORP), substrate composition, amount of organic matter, channel slope, and travel time were made along stream segments located between rotenone treatment stations and cages containing bioassay fish in six streams. The amount of fine organic matter, biofilm, sand, gravel, cobble, rubble, small boulders, slope, pH, TDS, ORP, light reaching the stream, energy dissipated, discharge, and cumulative travel time were each significantly correlated with fish death. By using logistic regression, measurements of environmental conditions were paired with the responses of bioassay fish to develop a model that predicted the persistence of rotenone toxicity in streams. This model was validated with data from two additional stream treatment reaches. Rotenone persistence was predicted by a model that used travel time, rubble, and ORP. When this model predicts a probability of less than 0.95, those who apply rotenone can expect incomplete eradication and should plan on fortifying rotenone concentrations. The significance of travel time has been previously identified and is currently used to predict rotenone persistence. However, rubble substrate, which may be associated with the degradation of rotenone by adsorption and volatilization in turbulent environments, was not previously considered.

  9. Sustaining the Landscape: A Method for Comparing Current and Desired Future Conditions of Forest Ecosystems in the North Cumberland Plateau and Mountains

    SciTech Connect

    Druckenbrod, D.L.

    2004-12-22

    This project initiates an integrated-landscape conservation approach within the Northern Cumberlands Project Area in Tennessee and Kentucky. The mixed mesophytic forests within the Cumberland Plateau and Mountains are among the most diverse in North America; however, these forests have been impacted by and remain threatened from changes in land use across this landscape. The integrated-landscape conservation approach presented in this report outlines a sequence of six conservation steps. This report considers the first three of these steps in two, successive stages. Stage 1 compares desired future conditions (DFCs) and current prevailing conditions (CPCs) at the landscape-scale utilizing remote sensing imagery, remnant forests, and descriptions of historical forest types within the Cumberland Plateau. Subsequently, Stage 2 compares DFCs and CPCs for at-risk forest types identified in Stage 1 utilizing structural, compositional, or functional attributes from USFS Forest Inventory and Analysis data. Ecological indicators will be developed from each stage that express the gaps between these two realizations of the landscape. The results from these first three steps will directly contribute to the final three steps of the integrated-landscape conservation approach by providing guidance for the generation of new conservation strategies in the Northern Cumberland Plateau and Mountains.

  10. Development of a mixed shrub-tanoak-douglas-fir community in a treated and untreated condition. Forest Service research paper

    SciTech Connect

    McDonald, P.M.; Fiddler, G.O.

    1996-08-01

    On a medium site in northern California, a tanoak-mixed shrub community was given several treatments (manual release two and three times, a combination chainsaw and cut surface herbicide treatment, two foliar herbicides, and a tank mix of the two herbicides) to study its development in both a natural (control) and treated condition. The herbicides were 2,4-D, Garlon 3A, and Garlon 4, each applied two times. Survival of planted Douglas-fir seedlings was recorded for 11 years and growth was quantified for 9 years after the last treatment application. In addition to Douglas-fir, data are presented individually for the two most abundant species (tanoak and snowbrush), for greenleaf manzanita, and for the hardwood tree and shrubs combined. The treatment response data, cost information, and plant community relationships provides the forest land manager with knowledge on how to attain some specific plant communities in the future, and their developmental potentials.

  11. Molecular characterization of forest soil based Paenibacillus elgii and optimization of various culture conditions for its improved antimicrobial activity

    PubMed Central

    Kumar, S. N.; Jacob, Jubi; Reshma, U. R.; Rajesh, R. O.; Kumar, B. S. D.

    2015-01-01

    Microorganisms have provided a bounty of bioactive secondary metabolites with very exciting biological activities such as antibacterial, antifungal antiviral, and anticancer, etc. The present study aims at the optimization of culture conditions for improved antimicrobial production of Paenibacillus elgii obtained from Wayanad forest of Western Ghats region of Kerala, India. A bacterial strain isolated from the Western Ghats forest soil of Wayanad, Kerala, India was identified as P. elgii by 16S rRNA gene sequencing. P. elgii recorded significant board spectrum activity against all human and plant pathogenic microorganism tested except Candida albicans. It has been well known that even minor variations in the fermentation medium may impact not only the quantity of desired bioactive metabolites but also the general metabolic profile of the producing microorganisms. Thus, further studies were carried out to assess the impact of medium components on the antimicrobial production of P. elgii and to optimize an ideal fermentation medium to maximize its antimicrobial production. Out of three media [nutrient broth (NA), Luria broth (LB) and Trypticase soy broth (TSB)] used for fermentation, TSB medium recorded significant activity. Glucose and meat peptone were identified as the best carbon and nitrogen sources, which significantly affected the antibiotic production when supplemented with TSB medium. Next the effect of various fermentation conditions such as temperature, pH, and incubation time on the production of antimicrobial compounds was studied on TSB + glucose + meat peptone and an initial pH of 7 and a temperature of 30°C for 3 days were found to be optimum for maximum antimicrobial production. The results indicate that medium composition in the fermentation media along with cultural parameters plays a vital role in the enhanced production of antimicrobial substances. PMID:26539188

  12. Effects of Increased Nitrogen Availability on C and N Cycles in Tropical Forests: A Meta-Analysis

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Atmospheric N deposition is predicted to increase four times over its current status in tropical forests by 2030. Our ability to understand the effects of N enrichment on C and N cycles is being challenged by the large heterogeneity of the tropical forest biome. The specific response will depend on the forest’s nutrient status; however, few studies of N addition appear to incorporate the nutrient status in tropical forests, possibly due to difficulties in explaining how this status is maintained. We used a meta-analysis to explore the consequences of the N enrichment on C and N cycles in tropical montane and lowland forests. We tracked changes in aboveground and belowground plant C and N and in mineral soil in response to N addition. We found an increasing trend of plant biomass in montane forests, but not in lowland forests, as well as a greater increase in NO emission in montane forest compared with lowland forest. The N2O and NO emission increase in both forest; however, the N2O increase in lowland forest was significantly even at first time N addition. The NO emission increase showed be greater at first term compared with long term N addition. Moreover, the increase in total soil N, ammonium, microbial N, and dissolved N concentration under N enrichment indicates a rich N status of lowland forests. The available evidence of N addition experiments shows that the lowland forest is richer in N than montane forests. Finally, the greater increase in N leaching and N gas emission highlights the importance of study the N deposition effect on the global climate change. PMID:26633681

  13. The herpetofauna of the cloud forests of Honduras

    PubMed Central

    2003-01-01

    The cloud forest amphibians and reptiles constitute the most important herpetofaunal segment in Honduras, due to the prevalence of endemic and Nuclear Middle American-restricted species. This segment, however, is subject to severe environmental threats due to the actions of humans. Of the 334 species of amphibians and reptiles currently known from Honduras, 122 are known to be distributed in cloud forest habitats. Cloud forest habitats are found throughout the mountainous interior of Honduras. They are subject to a Highland Wet climate, which features annual precipitation of >1500 mm and a mean annual temperature of <18°C. Cloud forest vegetation falls into two Holdridge formations, the Lower Montane Wet Forest and Lower Montane Moist Forest. The Lower Montane Wet Forest formation generally occurs at elevations in excess of 1500 m, although it may occur as low as 1300+ m at some localities. The Lower Montane Moist Forest formation generally occurs at 1700+ m elevation. Of the 122 cloud forest species, 18 are salamanders, 38 are anurans, 27 are lizards, and 39 are snakes. Ninety-eight of these 122 species are distributed in the Lower Montane Wet Forest formation and 45 in the Lower Montane Moist Forest formation. Twenty species are distributed in both formations. The cloud forest species are distributed among restricted, widespread, and peripheral distributional categories. The restricted species range as a group in elevation from 1340 to 2700 m, the species that are widespread in at least one of the two cloud forest formations range as a group from sea level to 2744 m, and the peripheral species range as a group from sea level to 1980 m. The 122 cloud forest species exemplify ten broad distributional patterns ranging from species whose northern and southern range termini are in the United States (or Canada) and South America, respectively, to those species that are endemic to Honduras. The largest segment of the herpetofauna falls into the endemic category, with

  14. Random forest models for the probable biological condition of streams and rivers in the USA

    EPA Science Inventory

    The National Rivers and Streams Assessment (NRSA) is a probability based survey conducted by the US Environmental Protection Agency and its state and tribal partners. It provides information on the ecological condition of the rivers and streams in the conterminous USA, and the ex...

  15. Tracing Nitrogen Sources in Forested Catchments Under Varying Flow Conditions: Seasonal and Event Scale Patterns

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sebestyen, S. D.; Shanley, J. B.; Boyer, E. W.; Kendall, C.

    2004-12-01

    Our ability to assess how stream nutrient concentrations respond to biogeochemical transformations and stream flow dynamics is often limited by datasets that do not include all flow conditions that occur over event, monthly, seasonal, and yearly time scales. At the Sleepers River Research Watershed in northeastern Vermont, USA, nitrate, DOC (dissolved organic carbon), and major ion concentrations were measured on samples collected over a wide range of flow conditions from summer 2002 through summer 2004. Nutrient flushing occurred at the W-9 catchment and high-frequency sampling revealed critical insights into seasonal and event-scale controls on nutrient concentrations. In this seasonally snow-covered catchment, the earliest stage of snowmelt introduced nitrogen directly to the stream from the snowpack. As snowmelt progressed, the source of stream nitrate shifted to flushing of soil nitrate along shallow subsurface flow paths. In the growing season, nitrogen flushing to streams varied with antecedent moisture conditions. More nitrogen was available to flush to streams when antecedent moisture was lowest, and mobile nitrogen stores in the landscape regenerated under baseflow conditions on times scales as short as 7 days. Leaf fall was another critical time when coupled hydrological and biogeochemical processes controlled nutrient fluxes. With the input of labile organic carbon from freshly decomposing leaves, nitrate concentrations declined sharply in response to in-stream immobilization or denitrification. These high-resolution hydrochemical data from multiple flow regimes are identifying "hot spots" and "hot moments" of biogeochemical and hydrological processes that control nutrient fluxes in streams.

  16. Developing a representative snow-monitoring network in a forested mountain watershed

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gleason, Kelly E.; Nolin, Anne W.; Roth, Travis R.

    2017-02-01

    A challenge in establishing new ground-based stations for monitoring snowpack accumulation and ablation is to locate the sites in areas that represent the key processes affecting snow accumulation and ablation. This is especially challenging in forested montane watersheds where the combined effects of terrain, climate, and land cover affect seasonal snowpack. We present a coupled modeling approach used to objectively identify representative snow-monitoring locations in a forested watershed in the western Oregon Cascades mountain range. We used a binary regression tree (BRT) non-parametric statistical model to classify peak snow water equivalent (SWE) based on physiographic landscape characteristics in an average snow year, an above-average snow year, and a below-average snow year. Training data for the BRT classification were derived using spatially distributed estimates of SWE from a validated physically based model of snow evolution. The optimal BRT model showed that elevation and land cover type were the most significant drivers of spatial variability in peak SWE across the watershed (R2 = 0.93, p value < 0.01). Geospatial elevation and land cover data were used to map the BRT-derived snow classes across the watershed. Specific snow-monitoring sites were selected randomly within the dominant BRT-derived snow classes to capture the range of spatial variability in snowpack conditions in the McKenzie River basin. The Forest Elevational Snow Transect (ForEST) is a result of this coupled modeling approach and represents combinations of forested and open land cover types at low, mid-, and high elevations. After 5 years of snowpack monitoring, the ForEST network provides a valuable and detailed dataset of snow accumulation, snow ablation, and snowpack energy balance in forested and open sites from the rain-snow transition zone to the upper seasonal snow zone in the western Oregon Cascades.

  17. Meteorological factors and air pollution in Lithuanian forests: possible effects on tree condition.

    PubMed

    Ozolincius, Remigijus; Stakenas, Vidas; Serafinaviciute, Brigita

    2005-10-01

    This study investigates changes in tree condition and environmental factors in Lithuania during the active growing season in 1991-2001. The average crown defoliation and the proportion of healthy trees of Pinus sylvestris, Picea abies, Betula sp., Fraxinus excelsior, Alnus incana, Alnus glutinosa, Populus tremula, and Quercus robur, meteorological (average temperature, amount of precipitation, hydrothermal coefficient) and air pollution data (acidity of precipitation, concentrations of SO2, NO2 and exposure of O3) were analysed. During the period 1991-2001 the condition of Pinus sylvestris, Populus tremula showed a tendency of improvement, while defoliation of Fraxinus excelsior significantly increased. The proportion of healthy trees correlated well with the average temperature and O3 (AOT40), while defoliation correlated well with the acidity of precipitation and the concentrations of SO2 and NO2. Deciduous species appeared to be more sensitive to O3 exposure and conifers to the concentrations of SO2 and NO2.

  18. Pathogenicity of Beauveria bassiana isolated from Moroccan Argan forests soil against larvae of Ceratitis capitata (Diptera: Tephritidae) in laboratory conditions.

    PubMed

    Imoulan, Abdessamad; Elmeziane, Abdellatif

    2014-03-01

    The Mediterranean fruit fly, Ceratitis capitata Wiedemann (Diptera: Tephritidae), is the major tephritid pest in Morocco. This pest survives in Moroccan forests Argania spinosa and continually invades the nearest agricultural areas. Entomopathogenic fungi are an interesting tool for fruit fly control and hold a useful alternative to conventional insecticides. However, primary selection of effective pathogens should be taken in laboratory condition prior to applying them in the field. Here, we used third late instar larvae of C. capitata to investigate the effectiveness of 15 local Beauveria bassiana isolates. Results showed that all isolates were able to infect the larval stage, producing a large mortality rate in puparia ranging from 65 to 95 % and caused significant reduction in adult emergence. The fungal treatments revealed that the mycosis occurred also in adults escaping infection as pupariating larvae. The percentage of mycosed puparia was highest in strain TAM6.2 (95 %) followed by ERS4.16 (90 %), therefore they were the most virulent. Median lethal concentration (LC₅₀) was studied for five isolates at four concentrations ranging from 10⁵ to 10⁸ conidia ml⁻¹. The results showed that the slopes of regression lines for B. bassiana ERS4.16 (slope = 0.386) and TAM6.2 (slope = 0.41) were the most important and had the lowest LC₅₀ values (2.85 × 10³ and 3.16 × 10³ conidia ml⁻¹ respectively). This investigation suggests that the soil of Argan forests contains pathogenic B. bassiana isolates and highlights for the first time their potential as biological control toward C. capitata larval stage in Morocco.

  19. Ecological contingency in the effects of climatic warming on forest herb communities

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Harrison, Susan; Damschen, Ellen Ingman; Grace, James B.

    2010-01-01

    Downscaling from the predictions of general climate models is critical to current strategies for mitigating species loss caused by climate change. A key impediment to this downscaling is that we lack a fully developed understanding of how variation in physical, biological, or land-use characteristics mediates the effects of climate change on ecological communities within regions. We analyzed change in understory herb communities over a 60-y period (1949/1951–2007/2009) in a complex montane landscape (the Siskiyou Mountains, Oregon) where mean temperatures have increased 2 °C since 1948, similar to projections for other terrestrial communities. Our 185 sites included primary and secondary-growth lower montane forests (500–1.200 m above sea level) and primary upper montane to subalpine forests (1,500–2,100 m above sea level). In lower montane forests, regardless of land-use history, we found multiple herb-community changes consistent with an effectively drier climate, including lower mean specific leaf area, lower relative cover by species of northern biogeographic affinity, and greater compositional resemblance to communities in southerly topographic positions. At higher elevations we found qualitatively different and more modest changes, including increases in herbs of northern biogeographic affinity and in forest canopy cover. Our results provide community-level validation of predicted nonlinearities in climate change effects.

  20. Recognizing the importance of tropical forests in limiting rainfall-induced debris flows

    EPA Science Inventory

    Worldwide concern for continuing loss of montane forest cover in the tropics usually focuses on adverse ecological consequences. Less recognized, but equally important to inhabitants of these affected regions, is an increasing susceptibility to rainfall-induced debris flows and t...

  1. Ecological contingency in the effects of climatic warming on forest herb communities.

    PubMed

    Harrison, Susan; Damschen, Ellen I; Grace, James B

    2010-11-09

    Downscaling from the predictions of general climate models is critical to current strategies for mitigating species loss caused by climate change. A key impediment to this downscaling is that we lack a fully developed understanding of how variation in physical, biological, or land-use characteristics mediates the effects of climate change on ecological communities within regions. We analyzed change in understory herb communities over a 60-y period (1949/1951-2007/2009) in a complex montane landscape (the Siskiyou Mountains, Oregon) where mean temperatures have increased 2 °C since 1948, similar to projections for other terrestrial communities. Our 185 sites included primary and secondary-growth lower montane forests (500-1.200 m above sea level) and primary upper montane to subalpine forests (1,500-2,100 m above sea level). In lower montane forests, regardless of land-use history, we found multiple herb-community changes consistent with an effectively drier climate, including lower mean specific leaf area, lower relative cover by species of northern biogeographic affinity, and greater compositional resemblance to communities in southerly topographic positions. At higher elevations we found qualitatively different and more modest changes, including increases in herbs of northern biogeographic affinity and in forest canopy cover. Our results provide community-level validation of predicted nonlinearities in climate change effects.

  2. 75 FR 16719 - Information Collection; Forest Landscape Value and Special Place Mapping for National Forest...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-04-02

    ...; ] DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Forest Service Information Collection; Forest Landscape Value and Special Place..., systematic science-based tool for collecting and analyzing public opinion about desired forest conditions...

  3. Forest structure and landscape patterns in the subalpine lodgepole pine type: A procedure for quantifying past and present conditions. Forest Service general technical report

    SciTech Connect

    Arno, S.F.; Reinhardt, E.D.; Scott, J.H.

    1993-02-01

    The report presents a method of quantitatively representing the mosaic of stand types on a small landscape in the subalpine lodgepole pine forest type. The method utilizes macroplots placed systematically on a transect grid. Structure and composition of both current and past stands are inventoried. Procedures for data analysis and interpretation are illustrated for a lodgepole pine landscape in Montana.

  4. Montana's forest resources. Forest Service resource bulletin

    SciTech Connect

    Conner, R.C.; O'Brien, R.A.

    1993-09-01

    The report includes highlights of the forest resource in Montana as of 1989. Also the study describes the extent, condition, and location of the State's forests with particular emphasis on timberland. Includes statistical tables, area by land classes, ownership, and forest type, growing stock and sawtimber volumes, growth, mortality, and removals for timberland.

  5. Transverse mixing of simulated piscicides in small montane streams

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Brown, Peter J.; Ard, Jenifer L.; Zale, Alexander V.

    2012-01-01

    Thorough mixing of piscicides into receiving waters is important for efficient and effective fish eradication. However, no guidance exists for the placement of drip stations with respect to mixing. Salt (NaCl) was used as a tracer to measure the mixing rates of center versus edge applications in riffle–pool, straight, and meandering sections of montane streams. The tracer was applied at either the center or the edge of a channel and measured with a conductivity meter across a downstream grid to determine the distances at which transverse mixing was complete. No advantage was accrued by applying piscicides in different types of channels because transverse mixing distance did not differ among them. However, mixing distance was significantly shorter at center applications. Chemicals entering a stream at the center of the channel mixed thoroughly within 10 stream widths, whereas chemicals entering a stream channel at the edge mixed thoroughly within 20 stream widths.

  6. A Test of Climate Change Refugia in Montane Meadow Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morelli, T.; Maher, S. P.; Moritz, C.; Beissinger, S. R.

    2013-12-01

    Climate change refugia, areas on the landscape buffered from recent shifts in temperature and precipitation patterns, are potentially important to understand population responses to anthropogenic climate change. With funding from the California Landscape Conservation Cooperative and the National Science Foundation, we used occupancy and genetic data to test the climate change refugia concept. Specifically, we estimated connectivity between Sierra Nevada meadows based on features such as topography and hydrology and determined the amount of change that meadows experienced during the 20th century. We then examined fine-scale population genetic structure across the California range of a montane meadow specialist, the Belding's ground squirrel (Urocitellus beldingi). We found distinctive genetic structure across the state as well as within the smaller geographic area of the central Sierra Nevada. Genetic diversity between survey sites predicted climate change refugia and population persistence supported hypothetical landscape connectivity. Our results highlight an important tool in climate change adaptation, given the limited resources available to land managers.

  7. Simulating Land-Cover Change in Montane Mainland Southeast Asia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fox, Jefferson; Vogler, John B.; Sen, Omer L.; Giambelluca, Thomas W.; Ziegler, Alan D.

    2012-05-01

    We used the conversion of land use and its effects (CLUE-s) model to simulate scenarios of land-cover change in Montane mainland southeast Asia (MMSEA), a region in the midst of transformation due to rapid intensification of agriculture and expansion of regional trade markets. Simulated changes affected approximately 10 % of the MMSEA landscape between 2001 and 2025 and 16 % between 2001 and 2050. Roughly 9 % of the current vegetation, which consists of native species of trees, shrubs, and grasses, is projected to be replaced by tree plantations, tea, and other evergreen shrubs during the 50 years period. Importantly, 4 % of this transition is expected to be due to the expansion of rubber ( Hevea brasiliensis), a tree plantation crop that may have important implications for local-to-regional scale hydrology because of its potentially high water consumption in the dry season.

  8. Remote sensing of interannual boreal forest NDVI in relation to climatic conditions in interior Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Verbyla, David

    2015-12-01

    Climate has warmed substantially in interior Alaska and several remote sensing studies have documented a decadal-scale decline in the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) termed a ‘browning trend’. Reduced summer soil moisture due to changing climatic factors such as earlier springs, less snowpack, and summer drought may reduce boreal productivity and NDVI. However, the relative importance of these climatic factors is poorly understood in boreal interior Alaska. In this study, I used the remotely sensed peak summer NDVI as an index of boreal productivity at 250 m pixel size from 2000 to 2014. Maximum summer NDVI was related to last day of spring snow, early spring snow water equivalent (SWE), and a summer moisture index. There was no significant correlation between early spring SWE and peak summer NDVI. There was a significant correlation between the last day of spring snow and peak summer NDVI, but only for a few higher elevation stations. This was likely due to snowmelt occurring later at higher elevations, thus having a greater effect on summer soil moisture relative to lower elevation sites. For most of boreal interior Alaska, summer drought was likely the dominant control on peak summer NDVI and this effect may persist for several years. Peak summer NDVI declined at all 26 stations after the 2004 drought, and the decline persisted for 2 years at all stations. Due to the shallow rooting zone of most boreal plants, even cool and moist sites at lower elevations are likely vulnerable to drought. For example the peak summer NDVI response following the 2004 drought was similar for adjacent cold and warm watershed basins. Thus, if frequent and severe summer droughts continue, moisture stress effects are likely to be widespread and prolonged throughout most of interior boreal Alaska, including relatively cool, moist sites regardless of spring snowpack conditions or spring phenology.

  9. Forests as promoters of terrestrial life-history strategies in East African amphibians.

    PubMed

    Müller, Hendrik; Liedtke, H Christoph; Menegon, Michele; Beck, Jan; Ballesteros-Mejia, Liliana; Nagel, Peter; Loader, Simon P

    2013-06-23

    Many amphibian lineages show terrestrialization of their reproductive strategy and breeding is partially or completely independent of water. A number of causal factors have been proposed for the evolution of terrestrialized breeding. While predation has received repeated attention as a potential factor, the influence of other factors such as habitat has never been tested using appropriate data or methods. Using a dataset that comprises 180 amphibian species from various East African habitats, we tested whether species occurring in different habitats show different patterns of terrestrialization in their breeding strategy. We recovered a significant association between terrestrialized breeding strategies and forest habitats. In general, forest seems to act as a facilitator, providing a permissive environment for the evolution of terrestrialized breeding strategies. However, while terrestrial oviposition is strongly correlated with lowland and montane forest habitat, complete terrestrial development is significantly correlated with montane forest only, indicating different selective pressures acting at different steps towards complete terrestrial development.

  10. The relative influences of climate and competition on tree growth along montane ecotones in the Rocky Mountains.

    PubMed

    Copenhaver-Parry, Paige E; Cannon, Ellie

    2016-09-01

    Distribution shifts of tree species are likely to be highly dependent upon population performance at distribution edges. Understanding the drivers of aspects of performance, such as growth, at distribution edges is thus crucial to accurately predicting responses of tree species to climate change. Here, we use a Bayesian model and sensitivity analysis to partition the effects of climate and crowding, as a metric of competition, on radial growth of three dominant conifer species along montane ecotones in the Rocky Mountains. These ecotones represent upper and lower distribution edges of two species, and span the distribution interior of the third species. Our results indicate a greater influence of climate (i.e., temperature and precipitation) than crowding on radial growth. Competition importance appears to increase towards regions of more favorable growing conditions, and precise responses to crowding and climate vary across species. Overall, our results suggest that climate will likely be the most important determinant of changes in tree growth at distribution edges of these montane conifers in the future.

  11. The Westphalian D fossil lepidodendrid forest at Table Head, Sydney Basin, Nova Scotia: Sedimentology, paleoecology and floral response to changing edaphic conditions

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Calder, J.H.; Gibling, M.R.; Eble, C.F.; Scott, A.C.; MacNeil, D.J.

    1996-01-01

    Strata of Westphalian D age on the western coast of the Sydney Basin expose a fossil forest of approximately 30 lepidodendrid trees within one of several clastic splits of the Harbour Seam. A mutidisciplinary approach was employed to interpret the origins of the coal bed, the depositional history of the site and the response of the fossil forest to changing edaphic conditions. The megaspore and miospore records indicate that the mire vegetation was dominated by arboreous lycopsids, especially Paralycopodites, with subdominant tree ferns. Petrographic, palynological and geochemical evidence suggest that the Harbour coal bed at Table Head originated as a rheotrophic (cf. planar) mire (eutric histosol). The mire forest is interpreted to have been engulfed by prograding distributary-channel sediments; sparse protist assemblages are suggestive of a freshwater delta-plain lake environment occasionally in contact with brackish waters. Lepidodendrids persisted as site colonizers of clastic substrates even after burial of the rheotrophic peatland and influenced the morphology of deposited sediment, but apparently were unable to colonize distributary channels. Equivocal taxonomic data (compression fossils) show the fossil forest to have been composed of both monocarpic (Lepidodendron) and polycarpic (Diaphorodendron, Paralycopodites, ?Sigillaria) lycopsids, genera recorded in the palynology of the uppermost ply of the underlying coal bed. Comparatively rare within the clastic beds of the fossil forest, however, is the stem compression of Paralycopodites, whose dispersed megapores and miospores dominate the underlying coal bed. Tree diameter data recorded equivalent to breast height indicate a forest of mixed age. These data would appear to suggest that some lepidodendrids employing a polycarpic reproductive strategy were better able to cross the ecological barrier imposed between peat and clastic substrates. Foliar compressions indicate that an understory or stand of

  12. Influence of vegetation structure on lidar-derived canopy height and fractional cover in forested riparian buffers during leaf-off and leaf-on conditions.

    PubMed

    Wasser, Leah; Day, Rick; Chasmer, Laura; Taylor, Alan

    2013-01-01

    Estimates of canopy height (H) and fractional canopy cover (FC) derived from lidar data collected during leaf-on and leaf-off conditions are compared with field measurements from 80 forested riparian buffer plots. The purpose is to determine if existing lidar data flown in leaf-off conditions for applications such as terrain mapping can effectively estimate forested riparian buffer H and FC within a range of riparian vegetation types. Results illustrate that: 1) leaf-off and leaf-on lidar percentile estimates are similar to measured heights in all plots except those dominated by deciduous compound-leaved trees where lidar underestimates H during leaf off periods; 2) canopy height models (CHMs) underestimate H by a larger margin compared to percentile methods and are influenced by vegetation type (conifer needle, deciduous simple leaf or deciduous compound leaf) and canopy height variability, 3) lidar estimates of FC are within 10% of plot measurements during leaf-on periods, but are underestimated during leaf-off periods except in mixed and conifer plots; and 4) depth of laser pulse penetration lower in the canopy is more variable compared to top of the canopy penetration which may influence within canopy vegetation structure estimates. This study demonstrates that leaf-off lidar data can be used to estimate forested riparian buffer canopy height within diverse vegetation conditions and fractional canopy cover within mixed and conifer forests when leaf-on lidar data are not available.

  13. Use of the Priestley-Taylor evaporation equation for soil water limited conditions in a small forest clearcut

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Flint, A.L.; Childs, S.W.

    1991-01-01

    The Priestley-Taylor equation, a simplification of the Penman equation, was used to allow calculations of evapotranspiration under conditions where soil water supply limits evapotranspiration. The Priestley-Taylor coefficient, ??, was calculated to incorporate an exponential decrease in evapotranspiration as soil water content decreases. The method is appropriate for use when detailed meteorological measurements are not available. The data required to determine the parameter for the ?? coefficient are net radiation, soil heat flux, average air temperature, and soil water content. These values can be obtained from measurements or models. The dataset used in this report pertains to a partially vegetated clearcut forest site in southwest Oregon with soil depths ranging from 0.48 to 0.70 m and weathered bedrock below that. Evapotranspiration was estimated using the Bowen ratio method, and the calculated Priestley-Taylor coefficient was fitted to these estimates by nonlinear regression. The calculated Priestley-Taylor coefficient (?????) was found to be approximately 0.9 when the soil was near field capacity (0.225 cm3 cm-3). It was not until soil water content was less than 0.14 cm3 cm-3 that soil water supply limited evapotranspiration. The soil reached a final residual water content near 0.05 cm3 cm-3 at the end of the growing season. ?? 1991.

  14. Co-effect of increased humidity and meteorological conditions on greenhouse gas fluxes in a young hybrid aspen forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hansen, Raili; Mander, Ülo; Kupper, Priit; Soosaar, Kaido; Maddison, Martin; Sõber, Jaak; Lõhmus, Krista

    2014-05-01

    Due to the climate change, higher precipitation and an increase in air humidity is expected in northern Europe in the near future (IPCC 2007). There are some studies about irrigation, elevated CO2 and O3 etc., but still we have too little knowledge about the humidity effect on the deciduous forest ecosystem. In 2006 a free-air humidity manipulation (FAHM) facility was established in Estonia and in 2008 we started to artificially increase the air humidity in young hybrid aspen (Populus tremula L. x P. tremuloides Michx.) forest trials on an Endogleyic Planosol of former arable land. Air humidity was raised on average about 7% compared to ambient condition (Tullus et al., 2012). We measured the carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide fluxes from the FAHM system using closed static chamber and gas-chromatograph techniques from July 2009 to November 2012 during snow free periods. Flux measurements were done once a month in three humidification (h) plots and in three control (c) plots. We monitored soil temperature, soil water potential (SWP), precipitation and relative humidity. The vegetation period was rainy in 2009, droughty in 2010 and 2011 (according to SWP the drought was severe in 2011) and cold in 2012. Soil respiration was the lowest in 2011 both in c and h plots; however it was significantly higher in h. Most of the time the soil was a sink for methane, but less CH4 was oxidized in the soil of h plots. Emission of N2O did not have good correlation with air humidity, although one could observe a clear tendency of bigger N2O fluxes when soil was continuously water-saturated. Expectedly, soil respiration had strong positive correlations with soil temperature and CH4 emission demonstrated strong positive correlation with SWP. Hence, interaction of humidification and precipitation affected greenhouse gas fluxes. IPCC, Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge. 2007. Tullus A, Kupper P, Sellin A, Parts L, Sõber J

  15. Is evapotranspiration and its components from boreal forests constant with stand age after fire and drainage conditions?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ewers, B. E.; Barker, C.; Angstmann, J.; Amiro, B.; Bond-Lamberty, B.; Kwon, H.; Gower, S. T.

    2008-12-01

    Boreal forests play a crucial role in the global C cycle, but our understanding of how the feedbacks from the boreal water cycle will affect regional and global climate is limited. In addition, boreal fire return intervals are shortening but the impact of shifting successional and soil drainage patterns on evapotranspiration is not known. We quantified evapotranspiration and its components across a chronosequence of three sites ages 42, 76 and 156 years in 2007, with each site containing separate well- and poorly-drained stands (bogs). Estimates of evapotranspiration, tree canopy transpiration and bryophyte evaporation were made using energy balance, sap flux and chamber measurements respectively. Energy balance measurements (net radiation and sensible and ground heat flux) were inter-calibrated across sites to minimize instrument biases. Daily average growing season evapotranspiration increased 15 percent with stand age from 1.61 to 1.85 mm/day and 14 percent with improved soil drainage from 1.61 to 1.84 mm/day. These increases in evapotranspiration were driven by tree transpiration increasing from 0.59 to 0.69 mm/day with stand age and from 0.24 to 0.61 mm/day with improved soil drainage. Bryophyte contributions to evapotranspiration were larger than tree sources averaging 0.75 and 1.0 mm/day for the well and poorly drained stands respectively, but did not change significantly within the three site ages. To independently test our scaling of component fluxes to evapotranspiration, stable isotope measurements of water sources and fluxes were made in the 76 year old site. Keeling plot analyses agreed with evapotranspiration estimates with higher gradients in the well-drained stand and a source signature dominated by trees in the poorly drained stand. Our results clearly show that evapotranspiration is not constant with increasing stand age or soil drainage conditions after fire. These changes in evapotranspiration are due to varying tree species contributions to

  16. Assessing the phylogeographic history of the montane caddisfly Thremma gallicum using mitochondrial and restriction-site-associated DNA (RAD) markers

    PubMed Central

    Macher, Jan-Niklas; Rozenberg, Andrey; Pauls, Steffen U; Tollrian, Ralph; Wagner, Rüdiger; Leese, Florian

    2015-01-01

    Repeated Quaternary glaciations have significantly shaped the present distribution and diversity of several European species in aquatic and terrestrial habitats. To study the phylogeography of freshwater invertebrates, patterns of intraspecific variation have been examined primarily using mitochondrial DNA markers that may yield results unrepresentative of the true species history. Here, population genetic parameters were inferred for a montane aquatic caddisfly, Thremma gallicum, by sequencing a 658-bp fragment of the mitochondrial CO1 gene, and 12,514 nuclear RAD loci. T. gallicum has a highly disjunct distribution in southern and central Europe, with known populations in the Cantabrian Mountains, Pyrenees, Massif Central, and Black Forest. Both datasets represented rangewide sampling of T. gallicum. For the CO1 dataset, this included 352 specimens from 26 populations, and for the RAD dataset, 17 specimens from eight populations. We tested 20 competing phylogeographic scenarios using approximate Bayesian computation (ABC) and estimated genetic diversity patterns. Support for phylogeographic scenarios and diversity estimates differed between datasets with the RAD data favouring a southern origin of extant populations and indicating the Cantabrian Mountains and Massif Central populations to represent highly diverse populations as compared with the Pyrenees and Black Forest populations. The CO1 data supported a vicariance scenario (north–south) and yielded inconsistent diversity estimates. Permutation tests suggest that a few hundred polymorphic RAD SNPs are necessary for reliable parameter estimates. Our results highlight the potential of RAD and ABC-based hypothesis testing to complement phylogeographic studies on non-model species. PMID:25691988

  17. Hydrologic Transit Times in Tropical Montane Watersheds: Catchment Scale and Landscape Influences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Munoz Villers, L. E.; Geissert Kientz, D. R.; Holwerda, F.; McDonnell, J.

    2015-12-01

    Stream water mean transit time (MTT) is a fundamental hydrologic parameter that integrates the distribution of sources, flow paths and storages present in catchments. However, in the tropics little work has been carried out on MTT, despite its usefulness for providing important information about watershed hydrological functioning at different spatial scales in (largely) ungauged basins. In particular, very few studies have quantified stream MTTs and related to catchment characteristics in tropical montane regions. Here we examined topographic, land use/cover and soil hydraulic controls on baseflow MTT for nested watersheds (0.1-34 km2) within a humid mountainous region, underlain by volcanic soil (Andisols) in central Veracruz (eastern Mexico). To estimate MTTs, we used a 2 year record of bi-weekly isotopic composition of precipitation and stream baseflow data. Land use/cover and topographic parameters were derived from GIS analysis. Soil profile hydraulic properties and permeability at the soil-bedrock interface were obtained from intensive field measurements and laboratory analysis. Estimates of baseflow MTT ranged between 1.2 and 2.7 years across the 12 study catchments. Major differences in MTTs were found at the small (0.1-1.5 km2) and at the large scales (14-34 km2), related mostly to catchment slope and morphology and, to much lesser extent, to land cover. Interestingly, longest stream MTTs were found in the cloud forest headwater catchments. Overall, MTTs were mainly controlled by depth to bedrock associated with topography, and permeability at the soil-bedrock interface. Mid and ridge hillslope positions appeared to be the main contributing areas for catchment recharge and runoff. The present study is the first step towards to understand the hydrology and subsurface processes across scales in this tropical environment, with the aim to support decisions for local and regional management water supply under increasing land use and climate change pressures.

  18. Long-term reproductive behaviour of woody plants across seven Bornean forest types in the Gunung Palung National Park (Indonesia): suprannual synchrony, temporal productivity and fruiting diversity.

    PubMed

    Cannon, Charles H; Curran, Lisa M; Marshall, Andrew J; Leighton, Mark

    2007-10-01

    For 68 months, we observed the reproductive behaviour of 7288 woody plants (172 figs, 1457 climbers and 5659 trees) spanning major soil and elevational gradients. Two 2-3 month community-wide supra-annual fruiting events were synchronized across five forest types, coinciding with ENSO events. At least 27 genera in 24 families restricted their reproduction to these events, which involved a substantial proportion of tree diversity (> 80% of phylogenetic diversity). During these events, mean reproductive levels (8.5%) represented an almost four-fold increase compared with other months. These patterns indicate a strong behavioural advantage to this unusual reproductive behaviour. Montane forest experienced a single, separate fruiting peak while the peat swamp forest did not participate. Excluding these events, no temporal reproductive pattern was detectable, at either the landscape or forest type. These phenological patterns have major implications for the conservation of frugivore communities, with montane and swamp forests acting as 'keystone' forests.

  19. Comparing the observed differences in snowmelt energy fluxes during rain-on-snow and clear sky conditions at numerous open and forested sites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garvelmann, J.; Pohl, S.; Weiler, M.

    2013-12-01

    The spatial and temporal variability of snowcover processes and the associated energy balance factors are still not well understood, especially in forested environments. A high-density network consisting of novel, low cost, standalone snow monitoring stations (SnoMoS) was deployed to measure snow depth and the meteorological variables controlling the available energy fluxes at the snow surface in the Black Forest, a typical mid latitude medium elevation mountain range (500-1500m). The winter periods in this environment are characterized by multiple snow accumulation and melt periods including frequent rain-on-snow events. A stratified sampling design was set-up to cover most of the elevation range and exposures in the study area. Furthermore SnoMoS pairs (forest/open) were installed to investigate the influence of the forest cover on the snow accumulation and melt processes. The meteorological variables measured in hourly intervals allowed for a continuous direct estimation of the individual surface energy balance components for different topographic situations, different vegetation covers, and a variety of climatic conditions. The study shows the relative importance and quantifies the contributions of the individual snowmelt energy balance components along with their respective spatial variability during a rain-on-snow event in December 2012 compared to clear sky snowmelt in early spring 2013 based on the data of 65 SnoMoS. The derived snowmelt energy balance for the 65 open and forested locations in the study area show the importance of the turbulent fluxes of sensible and latent heat accounting for, on average, 62% of the total melt energy available for snowmelt at open sites during a rain-on-snow event. At the forested sites, net longwave radiation (55%) and turbulent energy fluxes (32%) dominated snowmelt during this time. In contrast, during clear sky conditions net global radiation was dominating the energy balance at the open sites (92%) and forested sites

  20. Hillslope and stream connections to water tables in montane meadows of the southern Sierra Nevada, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Conklin, M. H.; Lucas, R. G.

    2011-12-01

    Montane meadows are often areas of groundwater discharge. In this study we characterized the groundwater - surface water interactions of two meadow systems and their connectivity to the surrounding catchment . We analyzed groundwater elevation data in 24 wells in two meadows located in the southern Sierra Nevada. Well transects extended from the meadow centers near the stream, to the meadow edged, and into the adjacent forest-where wells were drilled into the weathered granite saprock layer. Water samples were collected from the monitoring wells and from streams associated with the meadow systems and analyzed for major ions and stable water isotopes. Ground water elevations in the monitoring wells were used to calculate daily evapotranspiration (ET) values. These values show that locations on the meadow slopes and near the meadow edges are losing water to the atmosphere at near potential evapotranspiration rates during the height of the growing season. ET signals from wells near the meadow streams are muted, likely due to the vegetation utilizing the available surface water at these locations. Wells installed in the saprock layer, outside of the meadow boundaries, show diurnal fluctuations in sync with fluctuations observed at the meadow edge. This trend persists after the meadow vegetation senesces, indicating that groundwater elevations in the meadow, especially near the meadow edge, are significantly influenced by the adjacent hillslope saprock layer and forest ET. Geochemical sampling results indicate that the meadow streams are predominantly fed by snowmelt in the spring and early summer, moving toward more influence from base flow in the late summer and early fall. Results from the geochemical analysis established the connections of the hillslope to the meadow water tables and of the meadow subsurface waters to the down-gradient streams. Our results indicate that the these meadows are directly connected to the shallow sub-surface processes in the up gradient

  1. Beta diversity along environmental gradients: implications of habitat specialization in tropical montane landscapes.

    PubMed

    Jankowski, Jill E; Ciecka, Anna L; Meyer, Nola Y; Rabenold, Kerry N

    2009-03-01

    1. Understanding how species in a diverse regional pool are spatially distributed with respect to habitat types is a longstanding problem in ecology. Tropical species are expected to be specialists along environmental gradients, and this should result in rapid compositional change (high beta diversity) across landscapes, particularly when alpha diversity is a small fraction of regional diversity. Corollary challenges are then to identify controlling environmental variables and to ask whether species cluster into discrete community types along a gradient. 2. We investigated patterns of avian species' distributions in the Tilarán mountains of Costa Rica between 1000 m and 1700 m elevation where a strong moisture gradient exists. High beta diversity was found with both auditory counts adjusted for detectability and extensive capture data, revealing nearly complete change in community composition over a few kilometres on the Pacific slope. As predicted, this beta diversity was roughly twice as high as on temperate mountainsides. 3. Partial Mantel analyses and canonical correspondence analysis indicate that change in species composition is highly correlated with change in moisture (and correlated epiphyte cover) at different distances from the continental divide on the Pacific slope. Altitude was not a good predictor of change in species composition, as species composition varies substantially among sites at the same elevation. 4. Detrended correspondence analysis and cluster analysis revealed a zone of rapid transition separating a distinct cloud forest community from rainshadow forest. On the Caribbean slope, where a shallower moisture gradient was predicted to result in lower beta diversity, we found lower rates of compositional change and more continuous species turnover. 5. Results suggest that habitat specialization of birds is likely a strong ecological force generating high beta diversity in montane landscapes. Despite overall rapid rates of species turnover

  2. Determinants of drought effects on crown condition and their relationship with depletion of carbon reserves in a Mediterranean holm oak forest.

    PubMed

    Galiano, Lucía; Martínez-Vilalta, Jordi; Sabaté, Santi; Lloret, Francisco

    2012-04-01

    Severe droughts may increase physiological stress on long-lived woody vegetation, occasionally leading to rapid defoliation and progressive increase in mortality of overstorey trees. Over the last few years, episodes of drought-induced tree dieback have been documented in a variety of woodlands and forests around the world. However, the factors determining tree survival and subsequent recovery are still poorly understood, especially in resprouter species. We have studied the effects of a single drought episode on crown condition in a holm oak (Quercus ilex L.) forest located in NE Spain 7 years after the drought event. Generalized linear models were used to study the environmental correlates of forest crown condition 7 years after the drought event. Additionally, we evaluated the association between crown condition and the carbon and nutrient reserves stored in lignotubers 7 years after the drought. Our study reveals the multifactor nature of a drought-driven forest dieback in which soil depth and the characteristics of individual trees, particularly their number of stems, determined a complex spatial pattern of tree-level responses. This dieback was associated with a depletion of the carbon reserves in lignotubers 7 years after the episode, representing a reduction of up to 60% in highly drought-damaged trees. Interestingly, in the absence of new acute droughts, successive surveys in 2007-11 showed a direct association between carbon reserves depletion and further deterioration of crown condition. More frequent droughts, as predicted by climate change projections, may lead to a progressive depletion of carbon reserves and to a loss of resilience in Mediterranean resprouter species.

  3. Relative Importance of Current and Past Landscape Structure and Local Habitat Conditions for Plant Species Richness in Dry Grassland-Like Forest Openings

    PubMed Central

    Husáková, Iveta; Münzbergová, Zuzana

    2014-01-01

    In fragmented landscapes, plant species richness may depend not only on local habitat conditions but also on landscape structure. In addition, both present and past landscape structure may be important for species richness. There are, however, only a few studies that have investigated the relative importance of all of these factors. The aim of this study was to examine the effect of current and past landscape structures and habitat conditions on species richness at dry grassland-like forest openings in a forested landscape and to assess their relative importance for species richness. We analyzed information on past and present landscape structures using aerial photographs from 1938, 1973, 1988, 2000 and 2007. We calculated the area of each locality and its isolation in the present and in the past and the continuity of localities in GIS. At each locality, we recorded all vascular plant species (296 species in 110 forest openings) and information on abiotic conditions of the localities. We found that the current species richness of the forest openings was significantly determined by local habitat conditions as well as by landscape structure in the present and in the past. The highest species richness was observed on larger and more heterogeneous localities with rocks and shallow soils, which were already large and well connected to other localities in 1938. The changes in the landscape structure in the past can thus have strong effects on current species richness. Future studies attempting to understand determinants of species diversity in fragmented landscapes should also include data on past landscape structure, as it may in fact be more important than the present structure. PMID:24809474

  4. Hyperspectral data for assessment of temporal changes in Norway spruce forest conditions in the mountainous region of the Czech Republic affected by long-term acidic deposition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Albrechtova, J.; Lhotakova, Z.; Misurec, J.; Kopackova, V.; Campbell, P. K. E.; Edwards-Jonasova, M.; Kupkova, L.; Cervena, L.; Potuckova, M.; Cudlin, P.

    2015-12-01

    The Ore Mts. located in the western part of the Czech Republic suffered during 1950's-1990´s heavy atmospheric pollution due to the mining activities and brown coal combustion. Acidic deposition in combination with harsh climatic conditions led there to large-scale forest decline. Although the load of SO2 has significantly decreased since 1991, tree damage was still visible in 1998 in terms of high defoliation or dead trees. Nowadays Norway spruce trees do not exhibit visible symptoms of damage but the full recovery of Norway spruce forests is not complete yet due to persisting adverse soil conditions. The temporal changes in the physiological status of Norway spruce forests in the Krušné Hory Mts. were evaluated using two sets of spectral images acquired in 1998 (ASAS) and in 2013 (APEX) and ground truth data (LAI, tree crown status, photosynthetic pigment contents, leaf spectral properties measured by spectroradiometer, soil properties - pH, contents of basic cations, heavy metals, etc.). Ground truth data were evaluated by unconstrained and constrained multivariate analyses using Canoco 5. The high resolution spectral images (ASAS and APEX) enabled the identification of a gradient of forest conditions and their comparison. In 1998 the stands exhibited different physiological status corresponding to the pollution gradient with healthier trees at the western part of the mountains. Analysis of the foliar chemistry in 2013 show a slight improvement of the Norway spruce physiological status in the eastern part of the mountains while the status of the western-located stands slightly worsened. In 2013 we also studied the differences in soil geochemical conditions, which appeared to be less favorable in the western part of the mountains characterized by a low base cation contents in the top organic horizon and a very low pH (pH<3).

  5. Relative importance of current and past landscape structure and local habitat conditions for plant species richness in dry grassland-like forest openings.

    PubMed

    Husáková, Iveta; Münzbergová, Zuzana

    2014-01-01

    In fragmented landscapes, plant species richness may depend not only on local habitat conditions but also on landscape structure. In addition, both present and past landscape structure may be important for species richness. There are, however, only a few studies that have investigated the relative importance of all of these factors. The aim of this study was to examine the effect of current and past landscape structures and habitat conditions on species richness at dry grassland-like forest openings in a forested landscape and to assess their relative importance for species richness. We analyzed information on past and present landscape structures using aerial photographs from 1938, 1973, 1988, 2000 and 2007. We calculated the area of each locality and its isolation in the present and in the past and the continuity of localities in GIS. At each locality, we recorded all vascular plant species (296 species in 110 forest openings) and information on abiotic conditions of the localities. We found that the current species richness of the forest openings was significantly determined by local habitat conditions as well as by landscape structure in the present and in the past. The highest species richness was observed on larger and more heterogeneous localities with rocks and shallow soils, which were already large and well connected to other localities in 1938. The changes in the landscape structure in the past can thus have strong effects on current species richness. Future studies attempting to understand determinants of species diversity in fragmented landscapes should also include data on past landscape structure, as it may in fact be more important than the present structure.

  6. Response of a Southwest Montane Grassland to Monsoonal Rains Following an Extended Drought

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rahn, T.; McCabe, M.

    2006-12-01

    Over the past seven years, the North American desert southwest has experienced severe drought as evidenced by reduced snow-packs, depleted soil water content and large-scale die-off of piñon pine. Forecasts of future climate scenarios suggest that the southwestern United States may experience some of the most dramatic changes in climate associated with increasing greenhouse gas concentrations. These predicted climate changes have the potential to significantly influence the storage of carbon in the terrestrial biosphere of the southwest, and also affect the hydrometeorological dynamics of the region. We have established an eddy covariance site in a montane grassland in the region (Valles Caldera National Preserve in Northern New Mexico) to investigate the effect changing climate and moisture regimes have on ET flux and carbon storage. The southwest monsoon season of 2006 was particularly intense, and followed one of the warmest and driest winter/spring seasons on record. Here we present results on the measurement of turbulent exchanges of carbon dioxide and sensible and latent heat over this exceptional period in the context of environmental forcing (i.e. temperature, precipitation, incident radiation) in an effort to understand the influence of extreme conditions on the biophysical characterization of this high desert environment.

  7. Climate change impacts on the water balance of coastal and montane rainforests in northern Queensland, Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wallace, Jim; McJannet, Dave

    2012-12-01

    SummaryHow the water balance of coastal and montane rainforests in northern Queensland could change in response to climate change was examined using physically based models of interception and transpiration along with long term weather records. Future rainfall and temperature changes were based on the most recent climate modelling for the region and were assumed to fall within the range ±20% for rainfall with a temperature increase of 1-3 K. Climate change will affect the water balance of Australian rainforests primarily via rainfall changes rather than temperature. Any given change in rainfall produces a greater change in downstream runoff, the amplification ranging from 1.1 to 1.5 in the wet season to a factor of 12 in the dry season. Changes in wet season rainfall (80% of the annual total) dominate the total annual amount of water released for downstream flow, but dry season rainfall (20% of the annual total) changes are also very important as they affect onset and the duration of the period when there is no runoff. This period is currently ˜110 days and this would change by ±30 days under the above climate scenarios. There are also potential in situ impacts of climate change that affect how long the rainforest canopy is wet, which may have important implications for the epiphytes and mosses that depend on these wet canopy conditions. Similarly there may be significant impacts on downstream freshwater species whose life cycles are adapted to the current dry season flow regime.

  8. Uranium delivery and uptake in a montane wetland, north-central Colorado, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schumann, R. Randall; Zielinski, Robert A.; Otton, James K.; Pantea, Michael P.; Orem, William H.

    2017-01-01

    Comprehensive sampling of peat, underlying lakebed sediments, and coexisting waters of a naturally uraniferous montane wetland are combined with hydrologic measurements to define the important controls on uranium (U) supply and uptake. The major source of U to the wetland is groundwater flowing through locally fractured and faulted granite gneiss of Proterozoic age. Dissolved U concentrations in four springs and one seep ranged from 20 to 83 ppb (μg/l). Maximum U concentrations are ∼300 ppm (mg/kg) in lakebed sediments and >3000 ppm in peat. Uranium in lakebed sediments is primarily stratabound in the more organic-rich layers, but samples of similar organic content display variable U concentrations. Post-depositional modifications include variable additions of U delivered by groundwater. Uranium distribution in peat is heterogeneous and primarily controlled by proximity to groundwater-fed springs and seeps that act as local point sources of U, and by proximity to groundwater directed along the peat/lakebeds contact. Uranium is initially sorbed on various organic components of peat as oxidized U(VI) present in groundwater. Selective extractions indicate that the majority of sorbed U remains as the oxidized species despite reducing conditions that should favor formation of U(IV). Possible explanations are kinetic hindrances related to strong complex formation between uranyl and humic substances, inhibition of anaerobic bacterial activity by low supply of dissolved iron and sulfate, and by cold temperatures.

  9. Climate change creates rapid species turnover in montane communities.

    PubMed

    Gibson-Reinemer, Daniel K; Sheldon, Kimberly S; Rahel, Frank J

    2015-06-01

    Recent decades have seen substantial changes in patterns of biodiversity worldwide. Simultaneously, climate change is producing a widespread pattern of species' range shifts to higher latitudes and higher elevations, potentially creating novel assemblages as species shift at different rates. However, the direct link between species' turnover as a result of climate-induced range shifts has not yet been empirically evaluated. We measured rates of species turnover associated with species' range shifts in relatively undisturbed montane areas in Asia, Europe, North America, South America, and the Indo-Pacific. We show that species turnover is rapidly creating novel assemblages, and this can be explained by variable changes in species' range limits following warming. Across all the areas we analyzed, mean species' turnover was 12% per decade, which was nearly balanced between the loss of existing co-occurrences and the gain of novel co-occurrences. Turnover appears to be more rapid among ectothermic assemblages, and some evidence suggests tropical assemblages may be responding at more rapid rates than temperate assemblages.

  10. Statistical classification of vegetation and water depths in montane wetlands

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sharp, Julia L.; Sodja, Richard S.; Greenwood, Mark; Rosenberry, Donald O.; Warren, Jeffrey M.

    2013-01-01

    Relationships between water depths and density of submergent vegetation were studied in montane wetlands using statistical techniques based on clustering and an extension of regression trees. Sago pondweed (Stuckenia pectinata) was associated with lower average water depths than water milfoil (Myriophyllum sibiricum). We detected a nonlinear relationship when average water depths were used to predict percent cover in S. pectinata, with depths of 30–40 cm, producing the highest predicted average percent cover of S. pectinata; higher and lower depths resulted in lower percent cover predictions. For M. sibiricum, higher water depths were monotonically associated with higher average percent cover. To foster more S. pectinata and less M. sibiricum, managers might employ water control structures to reduce water depths below 1 m, using both temporary drawdowns and average depths of 30–40 cm. Other species responded less markedly to water depth variation. Should decreased water depths become more common, these results suggest an increase in S. pectinata and a decrease in M. sibiricum.

  11. Decreased winter severity increases viability of a montane frog population

    PubMed Central

    McCaffery, Rebecca M.; Maxell, Bryce A.

    2010-01-01

    Many proximate causes of global amphibian declines have been well documented, but the role that climate change has played and will play in this crisis remains ambiguous for many species. Breeding phenology and disease outbreaks have been associated with warming temperatures, but, to date, few studies have evaluated effects of climate change on individual vital rates and subsequent population dynamics of amphibians. We evaluated relationships among local climate variables, annual survival and fecundity, and population growth rates from a 9-year demographic study of Columbia spotted frogs (Rana luteiventris) in the Bitterroot Mountains of Montana. We documented an increase in survival and breeding probability as severity of winter decreased. Therefore, a warming climate with less severe winters is likely to promote population viability in this montane frog population. More generally, amphibians and other ectotherms inhabiting alpine or boreal habitats at or near their thermal ecological limits may benefit from the milder winters provided by a warming climate as long as suitable habitats remain intact. A more thorough understanding of how climate change is expected to benefit or harm amphibian populations at different latitudes and elevations is essential for determining the best strategies to conserve viable populations and allow for gene flow and shifts in geographic range. PMID:20421473

  12. Current analogues of future climate indicate the likely response of a sensitive montane tropical avifauna to a warming world.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Alexander S; Storlie, Collin J; Shoo, Luke P; Pearson, Richard G; Williams, Stephen E

    2013-01-01

    Among birds, tropical montane species are likely to be among the most vulnerable to climate change, yet little is known about how climate drives their distributions, nor how to predict their likely responses to temperature increases. Correlative models of species' environmental niches have been widely used to predict changes in distribution, but direct tests of the relationship between key variables, such as temperature, and species' actual distributions are few. In the absence of historical data with which to compare observations and detect shifts, space-for-time substitutions, where warmer locations are used as analogues of future conditions, offer an opportunity to test for species' responses to climate. We collected density data for rainforest birds across elevational gradients in northern and southern subregions within the Australian Wet Tropics (AWT). Using environmental optima calculated from elevational density profiles, we detected a significant elevational difference between the two regions in ten of 26 species. More species showed a positive (19 spp.) than negative (7 spp.) displacement, with a median difference of ∼80.6 m across the species analysed that is concordant with that expected due to latitudinal temperature differences (∼75.5 m). Models of temperature gradients derived from broad-scale climate surfaces showed comparable performance to those based on in-situ measurements, suggesting the former is sufficient for modeling impacts. These findings not only confirm temperature as an important factor driving elevational distributions of these species, but also suggest species will shift upslope to track their preferred environmental conditions. Our approach uses optima calculated from elevational density profiles, offering a data-efficient alternative to distribution limits for gauging climate constraints, and is sensitive enough to detect distribution shifts in this avifauna in response to temperature changes of as little as 0.4 degrees. We

  13. Current Analogues of Future Climate Indicate the Likely Response of a Sensitive Montane Tropical Avifauna to a Warming World

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, Alexander S.; Storlie, Collin J.; Shoo, Luke P.; Pearson, Richard G.; Williams, Stephen E.

    2013-01-01

    Among birds, tropical montane species are likely to be among the most vulnerable to climate change, yet little is known about how climate drives their distributions, nor how to predict their likely responses to temperature increases. Correlative models of species’ environmental niches have been widely used to predict changes in distribution, but direct tests of the relationship between key variables, such as temperature, and species’ actual distributions are few. In the absence of historical data with which to compare observations and detect shifts, space-for-time substitutions, where warmer locations are used as analogues of future conditions, offer an opportunity to test for species’ responses to climate. We collected density data for rainforest birds across elevational gradients in northern and southern subregions within the Australian Wet Tropics (AWT). Using environmental optima calculated from elevational density profiles, we detected a significant elevational difference between the two regions in ten of 26 species. More species showed a positive (19 spp.) than negative (7 spp.) displacement, with a median difference of ∼80.6 m across the species analysed that is concordant with that expected due to latitudinal temperature differences (∼75.5 m). Models of temperature gradients derived from broad-scale climate surfaces showed comparable performance to those based on in-situ measurements, suggesting the former is sufficient for modeling impacts. These findings not only confirm temperature as an important factor driving elevational distributions of these species, but also suggest species will shift upslope to track their preferred environmental conditions. Our approach uses optima calculated from elevational density profiles, offering a data-efficient alternative to distribution limits for gauging climate constraints, and is sensitive enough to detect distribution shifts in this avifauna in response to temperature changes of as little as 0.4 degrees

  14. Extinction vulnerability of tropical montane endemism from warming and upslope displacement: a preliminary appraisal for the highest massif in Madagascar

    PubMed Central

    RAXWORTHY, CHRISTOPHER J; PEARSON, RICHARD G; RABIBISOA, NIRHY; RAKOTONDRAZAFY, ANDRY M; RAMANAMANJATO, JEAN-BAPTISTE; RASELIMANANA, ACHILLE P; WU, SHENGHAI; NUSSBAUM, RONALD A; STONE, DÁITHÍ A

    2008-01-01

    review of the other massifs in Madagascar indicates potential similar vulnerability to habitat loss and upslope extinction. Consequently, we urgently recommend additional elevational surveys for these and other tropical montane assemblages, which should also include, when possible, the monitoring of local meteorological conditions and habitat change.

  15. Twenty years of ecosystem response after clearcutting and slashburning in conifer forests of central British Columbia, Canada

    PubMed Central

    Feller, Michael; Bradfield, Gary

    2017-01-01

    Forests are being clearcut over extensive areas of western North America, but plant community response to harvesting and slashburning under varying climatic conditions in central British Columbia, Canada is still largely unknown. Evaluation of resilience is hampered by the short history of logging, lack of long-term experiments and methodological limitations. To test the effect of clearcut logging, prescribed burning and reforestation on forest resilience, we recorded vascular plant cover repeatedly after treatment between 1981 and 2008 in 16 permanent research installations in three biogeoclimatic zones: Engelmann Spruce-Subalpine Fir, Interior Cedar-Hemlock and Sub-Boreal Spruce. We created a plant-trait dataset for the 181 recorded species to define plant functional types representing groups of plants that behave in similar ways and/or produce similar ecological outcomes. These plant functional types, along with taxonomic analysis of diagnostic and indicator species, were then used to evaluate plant community response to disturbance. Twenty years post-treatment, species diversity increased in all zones and plant abundance was greatest in the Interior Cedar-Hemlock. Cover of understory plant functional types associated with mature conifer forests increased in all zones, constituting a significant proportion (> 40%) of the vegetation community by year 20. Response patterns varied by zone and with time. Understory species diagnostic of mature forests were present in all zones by year 20, but we identified indicator species sensitive to slashburning or requiring more time for recovery, including white-flowered rhododendron (Rhododendron albiflorum) and devil's club (Oplopanax horridus). Overall, loss of compositional or functional diversity following harvest and site remediation was not detected, suggesting that montane and subalpine forests in British Columbia are resilient to this treatment. However, because these forests can be slow to recover from disturbance

  16. Twenty years of ecosystem response after clearcutting and slashburning in conifer forests of central British Columbia, Canada.

    PubMed

    Chandler, Julia R; Haeussler, Sybille; Hamilton, Evelyn H; Feller, Michael; Bradfield, Gary; Simard, Suzanne W

    2017-01-01

    Forests are being clearcut over extensive areas of western North America, but plant community response to harvesting and slashburning under varying climatic conditions in central British Columbia, Canada is still largely unknown. Evaluation of resilience is hampered by the short history of logging, lack of long-term experiments and methodological limitations. To test the effect of clearcut logging, prescribed burning and reforestation on forest resilience, we recorded vascular plant cover repeatedly after treatment between 1981 and 2008 in 16 permanent research installations in three biogeoclimatic zones: Engelmann Spruce-Subalpine Fir, Interior Cedar-Hemlock and Sub-Boreal Spruce. We created a plant-trait dataset for the 181 recorded species to define plant functional types representing groups of plants that behave in similar ways and/or produce similar ecological outcomes. These plant functional types, along with taxonomic analysis of diagnostic and indicator species, were then used to evaluate plant community response to disturbance. Twenty years post-treatment, species diversity increased in all zones and plant abundance was greatest in the Interior Cedar-Hemlock. Cover of understory plant functional types associated with mature conifer forests increased in all zones, constituting a significant proportion (> 40%) of the vegetation community by year 20. Response patterns varied by zone and with time. Understory species diagnostic of mature forests were present in all zones by year 20, but we identified indicator species sensitive to slashburning or requiring more time for recovery, including white-flowered rhododendron (Rhododendron albiflorum) and devil's club (Oplopanax horridus). Overall, loss of compositional or functional diversity following harvest and site remediation was not detected, suggesting that montane and subalpine forests in British Columbia are resilient to this treatment. However, because these forests can be slow to recover from disturbance

  17. Prescribed-fire effects on an aquatic community of a southwest montane grassland system

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Caldwell, Colleen A.; Jacobi, Gerald Z.; Anderson, Michael C.; Parmenter, Robert R.; McGann, Jeanine; Gould, William R.; DuBey, Robert; Jacobi, M. Donna

    2013-01-01

    The use of prescription fire has long been recognized as a reliable management tool to suppress vegetative succession processes and to reduce fuel loading to prevent catastrophic wildfires, but very little attention has been paid to the effects on aquatic systems. A late-fall prescribed burn was implemented to characterize effects on an aquatic community within a montane grassland system in north-central New Mexico. The fire treatment was consistent with protocols of a managed burn except that the fire was allowed to burn through the riparian area to the treatment stream to replicate natural fire behavior. In addition to summer and fall preburn assessment of the treatment and reference stream, we characterized immediate postfire effects (within a week for macroinvertebrates and within 6 months for fish) and seasonal effects over a 2-year period. Responses within the treatment stream were compared with an unburned reference stream adjacent to the prescription burn. During the burn, the diel range in air temperature increased by 5°C while diel range in water temperature did not change. Carbon–nitrogen ratios did not differ between treatment and reference streams, indicating the contribution of ash from the surrounding grassland was negligible. Although total taxa and species richness of aquatic macroinvertebrates were not altered, qualitative indices revealed departure from preburn condition due to loss of sensitive taxa (mayflies [order Ephemeroptera] and stoneflies [order Plecoptera]) and an increase in tolerant taxa (midges [order Chironomidae]) following the burn. Within 1 year of the burn, these attributes returned to preburn conditions. The density and recruitment of adult Brown Trout Salmo trutta did not differ between pre- and postburn collections, nor did fish condition differ. Fire is rarely truly replicated within a given study. Although our study represents one replication, the results will inform managers about the importance in timing (seasonality

  18. Tropical forests

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1985-01-01

    Major international aid and nongovernmental groups have agreed on a strategy to conserve tropical forests. Their plan calls for a $5.3 billion, five-year program for the 56 most critically affected countries. This report consists of three parts. The Plan details the costs of deforestation in both developing and industrialized countries, uncovers its real causes, and outlines a five-part action plan. Case Studies reviews dozens of detailed accounts of successful forest management projects from around the world, covering wide-ranging ecological conditions and taking into account the economics of forest products in different marketing situations. Country Investment Profiles spell out country-by-country listings of what should be done, who should do it, and how much it will cost.

  19. Genetic variation and risks of introgression in the wild Coffea arabica gene pool in south-western Ethiopian montane rainforests

    PubMed Central

    Aerts, Raf; Berecha, Gezahegn; Gijbels, Pieter; Hundera, Kitessa; Glabeke, Sabine; Vandepitte, Katrien; Muys, Bart; Roldán-Ruiz, Isabel; Honnay, Olivier

    2013-01-01

    The montane rainforests of SW Ethiopia are the primary centre of diversity of Coffea arabica and the origin of all Arabica coffee cultivated worldwide. This wild gene pool is potentially threatened by forest fragmentation and degradation, and by introgressive hybridization with locally improved coffee varieties. We genotyped 703 coffee shrubs from unmanaged and managed coffee populations, using 24 microsatellite loci. Additionally, we genotyped 90 individuals representing 23 Ethiopian cultivars resistant to coffee berry disease (CBD). We determined population genetic diversity, genetic structure, and admixture of cultivar alleles in the in situ gene pool. We found strong genetic differentiation between managed and unmanaged coffee populations, but without significant differences in within-population genetic diversity. The widespread planting of coffee seedlings including CBD-resistant cultivars most likely offsets losses of genetic variation attributable to genetic drift and inbreeding. Mixing cultivars with original coffee genotypes, however, leaves ample opportunity for hybridization and replacement of the original coffee gene pool, which already shows signs of admixture. In situ conservation of the wild gene pool of C. arabica must therefore focus on limiting coffee production in the remaining wild populations, as intensification threatens the genetic integrity of the gene pool by exposing wild genotypes to cultivars. PMID:23798974

  20. Interannual variability in the extent and intensity of tropical dry forest deciduousness in the Mexican Yucatan (2000-2016): Drivers and Links to Regional Atmospheric Conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cuba, Nicholas Joseph

    The dry topical forests of the southern Yucatan Peninsula experience multiple natural and anthropogenic disturbances, as well as substantial interannual climate variability that can result in stark interannual differences in vegetation phenology. Dry season deciduousness is a typical response to limit tree water loss during prolonged periods of hot and dry conditions, and this behavior has both direct implications for ecosystem functioning, and the potential to indicate climate conditions when observed using remotely-sensed data. The first research paper of this dissertation advances methods to assess the accuracy of remotely-sensed measurements of canopy conditions using in-situ observations. Linear regression models show the highest correlation (R2 = 0.751) between in-situ canopy gap fraction and Landsat NDWISWIR2. MODIS time series NDWISWIR2 are created for the period March 2000-February 2011, and exhibit stronger correlation with time series of TRMM precipitation data than do MODIS EVI time series (R2= 0.48 vs. R2 = 0.43 in deciduous forest areas). The second paper examines differences between the deciduous phenology of young forest stands and older forest stands. Land-cover maps are overlaid to determine whether forested areas are greater than or less than 22 years old in 2010, and metrics related to deciduous phenology are derived from MODIS EVI2 time series in three years, 2008 to 2011. Statistical tests that compare matched pairs of young (12-22 years) and older (>22 years) forest stand age class samples are used to detect significant differences in metrics related to the intensity and timing of deciduousness. In all three years, younger forests exhibit significantly more intense deciduousness, measured as total seasonal change of EVI2 normalized by annual maximum EVI2 (p<0.001), and exhibit larger EVI2 declines at successive 32-day periods during dry season months (p<0.02), than nearby older forests that are assumed to share similar environmental

  1. Fog deposition at a windward Costa Rican cloud forest site

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frumau, K. F. A.; Bruijnzeel, L. A.; Tobon-Marin, C.

    2010-07-01

    The hydrological importance of tropical montane cloud forests is recognized increasingly, mostly with respect to the additional water inputs provided by the capture of fog by the forest canopy compared to a non-forested situation (e.g. pasture) in the same environmental setting. The deposition of fog (interception) consists of two components, viz. advectional impaction against roughness elements in the landscape, and vertical settlement both by turbulent diffusion and by gravitational settling. Turbulent diffusion being a function of the aerodynamic roughness of the surface it is typically enhanced over forest compared to pasture. In windward montane areas fog often consists of stratus clouds being forced uphill with the cloud being "stripped" by roughness elements in the landscape. However, due to rain-generating processes these clouds rarely have fog-sized droplets only and larger drops are present as well. Under sufficiently strong wind speeds (e.g. in the trade-wind belt), drizzle-sized droplets tend to follow the terrain and behave like fog. Consequently, there is no unbiased manner in which to separate between fog and drizzle using conventional fog and rain gauges only. Similarly, hydrologically effective precipitation (inclined rainfall) is difficult to determine in mountainous areas, which complicates the determination of fog deposition using wet-canopy water budget approaches. The deposition of fog to a windward Costa Rican montane cloud forest was studied during a full hydrological year (between 1 July 2003 and 1 July 2004). Fog deposition was estimated from the wet canopy water budget as the difference between hydrologically effective precipitation and the sum of throughfall, stemflow, and interception loss. The results show that fog interception constituted a much smaller contribution at this site compared to wind-driven drizzle.

  2. Sustainability of forest management under changing climatic conditions in the southern United States: adaptation strategies, economic rents and carbon sequestration.

    PubMed

    Susaeta, Andres; Carter, Douglas R; Adams, Damian C

    2014-06-15

    The impacts of climate change on profitability and carbon storage in even-aged forest stands of two dominant commercial pine species, loblolly and slash pine, in the southern United States were assessed under alternative assumptions about the impact of climate change on forest productivity and catastrophic disturbance rates. Potential adaptation strategies to reduce losses from disturbance included: 1) alternative planting densities, and 2) planting slash pine instead of loblolly pine. In addition, the amount of sequestered carbon was used to develop an index of economic efficiency for carbon sequestration, which further helps rank the suitability of alternative adaptation strategies. Our results indicate that greater economic rents from forests occur with lower planting densities and the substitution of slash pine for high density loblolly pine. However, less carbon is sequestered by low density loblolly pine compared to slash pine and high density loblolly pine. Both adaptation strategies are economically more effective in terms of carbon sequestration compared to the baseline since they generate more economic revenues per Mg of sequestered carbon.

  3. Biology and phenology of three leaf beetle species (Chrysomelidae) in a montane forest in southeast Brazil*

    PubMed Central

    Flinte, Vivian; Hentz, Ethel; Morgado, Barbara Mascarenhas; Lima, Anne Caruliny do Monte; Khattar, Gabriel; Monteiro, Ricardo Ferreira; de Macedo, Margarete Valverde

    2015-01-01

    Abstract The population phenology of the cassidines, Coptocycla arcuata and Omaspides trichroa, and the chrysomeline, Platyphora axillaris, was studied at Serra dos Órgãos National Park, State of Rio de Janeiro, southeast Brazil. Monthly surveys of larvae and adults were conducted between 2008 and 2011 at approximately 1000 m altitude on their respective host plants, Cordia polycephala (Boraginaceae), Ipomoea philomega (Convolvulaceae) and Solanum scuticum (Solanaceae). This is the first observation of larviparity and host record for Platyphora axillaris. Although having different life history traits, all species showed similar phenologies. They were abundant from October to March, months of high temperatures and intense rainfall, with two distinct reproductive peaks in the same season. Abundance dropped abruptly during the coldest and driest months, from May to August. Frequently none of these species were recorded during June and July. This phenological pattern is similar to other Chrysomelidae living in subtropical areas of Brazil. Temperature and rainfall appear to be the major factors influencing the fluctuation of these three species. PMID:26798318

  4. Montane forest root growth and soil organic layer depth as potential factors stabilizing Cenozoic global change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doughty, Christopher E.; Taylor, Lyla L.; Girardin, Cecile A. J.; Malhi, Yadvinder; Beerling, David J.

    2014-02-01

    Tree roots and their symbiotic fungal partners are believed to play a major role in regulating long-term global climate, but feedbacks between global temperature and biotic weathering have not yet been explored in detail. In situ field data from a 3000 m altitudinal transect in Peru show fine root growth decreases and organic layer depth increases with the cooler temperatures that prevail at increased altitude. We hypothesize that this observation suggests a negative feedback: as global temperatures rise, the soil organic layer will shrink, and more roots will grow in the mineral layer, thereby accelerating weathering and reducing atmospheric CO2. We examine this mechanism with a process-based biological weathering model and demonstrate that this negative feedback could have contributed to moderating long-term global Cenozoic climate during major Cenozoic CO2 changes linked to volcanic degassing and tectonic uplift events.

  5. Soil-plant hydrology of indigenous and exotic trees in an Ethiopian montane forest.

    PubMed

    Fritzsche, Florian; Abate, Asferachew; Fetene, Masresha; Beck, Erwin; Weise, Stephan; Guggenberger, Georg

    2006-08-01

    Fast-growing exotic trees are widely planted in the tropics to counteract deforestation; however, their patterns of water use could be detrimental to overall ecosystem productivity through their impact on ecosystem water budget. In a comparative field study on seasonal soil-plant water dynamics of two exotic species (Cupressus lusitanica Mill. and Eucalyptus globulus Labill.) and the indigenous Podocarpus falcatus (Thunb.) Mirb. in south Ethiopia, we combined a 2.5-year record for climate and soil water availability, natural-abundance oxygen isotope ratios (delta(18)O) of soil and xylem water, destructive root sampling and transpiration measurements. Soil was generally driest under C. lusitanica with its dense canopy and shallow root system, particularly following a relatively low-rainfall wet season, with the wettest soil under E. globulus. Wet season transpiration of C. lusitanica was twice that of the other species. In the dry season, P. falcatus and C. lusitanica reduced transpiration by a factor of six and two, respectively, whereas E. globulus showed a fivefold increase. In all species, there was a shift in water uptake to deeper soil layers as the dry season progressed, accompanied by relocation of live fine root biomass (LFR) of C. lusitanica and P. falcatus to deeper layers. Under P. falcatus, variability in soil matric potential, narrow delta(18)O depth gradients and high LFR indicated fast water redistribution. Subsoil water uptake was important only for E. globulus, which had low topsoil LFR and tap roots exploiting deep water. Although P. falcatus appeared better adapted to varying soil water availability than the exotic species, both conifers decreased growth substantially during dry weather. Growth of E. globulus was largely independent of topsoil water content, giving it the potential to cause substantial dry-season groundwater depletion.

  6. Population signatures of large-scale, long-term disjunction and small-scale, short-term habitat fragmentation in an Afromontane forest bird.

    PubMed

    Habel, J C; Mulwa, R K; Gassert, F; Rödder, D; Ulrich, W; Borghesio, L; Husemann, M; Lens, L

    2014-09-01

    The Eastern Afromontane cloud forests occur as geographically distinct mountain exclaves. The conditions of these forests range from large to small and from fairly intact to strongly degraded. For this study, we sampled individuals of the forest bird species, the Montane White-eye Zosterops poliogaster from 16 sites and four mountain archipelagos. We analysed 12 polymorphic microsatellites and three phenotypic traits, and calculated Species Distribution Models (SDMs) to project past distributions and predict potential future range shifts under a scenario of climate warming. We found well-supported genetic and morphologic clusters corresponding to the mountain ranges where populations were sampled, with 43% of all alleles being restricted to single mountains. Our data suggest that large-scale and long-term geographic isolation on mountain islands caused genetically and morphologically distinct population clusters in Z. poliogaster. However, major genetic and biometric splits were not correlated to the geographic distances among populations. This heterogeneous pattern can be explained by past climatic shifts, as highlighted by our SDM projections. Anthropogenically fragmented populations showed lower genetic diversity and a lower mean body mass, possibly in response to suboptimal habitat conditions. On the basis of these findings and the results from our SDM analysis we predict further loss of genotypic and phenotypic uniqueness in the wake of climate change, due to the contraction of the species' climatic niche and subsequent decline in population size.

  7. Population signatures of large-scale, long-term disjunction and small-scale, short-term habitat fragmentation in an Afromontane forest bird

    PubMed Central

    Habel, J C; Mulwa, R K; Gassert, F; Rödder, D; Ulrich, W; Borghesio, L; Husemann, M; Lens, L

    2014-01-01

    The Eastern Afromontane cloud forests occur as geographically distinct mountain exclaves. The conditions of these forests range from large to small and from fairly intact to strongly degraded. For this study, we sampled individuals of the forest bird species, the Montane White-eye Zosterops poliogaster from 16 sites and four mountain archipelagos. We analysed 12 polymorphic microsatellites and three phenotypic traits, and calculated Species Distribution Models (SDMs) to project past distributions and predict potential future range shifts under a scenario of climate warming. We found well-supported genetic and morphologic clusters corresponding to the mountain ranges where populations were sampled, with 43% of all alleles being restricted to single mountains. Our data suggest that large-scale and long-term geographic isolation on mountain islands caused genetically and morphologically distinct population clusters in Z. poliogaster. However, major genetic and biometric splits were not correlated to the geographic distances among populations. This heterogeneous pattern can be explained by past climatic shifts, as highlighted by our SDM projections. Anthropogenically fragmented populations showed lower genetic diversity and a lower mean body mass, possibly in response to suboptimal habitat conditions. On the basis of these findings and the results from our SDM analysis we predict further loss of genotypic and phenotypic uniqueness in the wake of climate change, due to the contraction of the species' climatic niche and subsequent decline in population size. PMID:24713824

  8. Flora of the forests as the indicator of climate change of Baikal Region (South Siberia)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krivobokov, Leonid; Anenkhonov, Oleg

    2010-05-01

    The problem of global climate warming and its consequences for nature and civilization has been actively discussed in scientific and political publications during last 15 years. Although quantitative estimations of the rate of warming can be rather differ by results of different authors. A relevant component of such assessment is the prognosis of vegetation development under conditions of climate warming. Our study was carried out on the western macroslope of the Ikatskii Ridge in the northern Baikal region (South Siberia). This area is located on the territory where permafrost may have a continuous, discontinuous, or insular distribution. The plant cover of study area is characterized by dominance of larch (Larix gmelinii (Rupr.) Rupr.) and pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) forests that form a forest belt. In this belt, two parts can be distinguished: the lower, forest-steppe part (550-900 m a.s.l.), which is limited by steppe at the lower part and the upper, mountain-taiga part (800-1600 m a.s.l.) with mountain tundra on the top. Pine forests by Braun-Blanquet approach include to hemiboreal forests Rhytidio rugosi-Laricetea sibiricae K. Korotkov et Ermakov 1999. Larch forests presented by boreal forests Vaccinio-Piceetea Br.-Bl. in Br.-Bl., Siss. et Vlieger 1939. Floristic compositions of these classes were analyzed as cenofloras. Floristic complexes of cenofloras included the species of dark coniferous, light coniferous, preboreal, forest-steppe, mountain steppe, true steppe, montane, and meadow zonal groups. The cenoflora of class Rhytidio-Laricetea is presented by 222 species of vascular plants. This cenoflora mostly has the steppe and forest floristic complexes, respectively 54.4 and 35.5%. The cenoflora of class Vaccinio-Piceetea include 153 species and the light coniferous group of the forest floristic complex prevailed. The total share of forest species in the cenoflora reaches 70.6%. Other floristic complexes (meadow, steppe, and mountain) has the similar

  9. [Seedlings growth and survival of five Acacia (Fabaceae) species that coexists in neotropical semi-arid forests of Argentina, under different light and water availability conditions].

    PubMed

    Venier, Paula; Cabido, Marcelo; Mangeaud, Arnaldo; Funes, Guillermo

    2013-06-01

    Seedlings growth and survival of five Acacia (Fabaceae) species that coexists in neotropical semi-arid forests of Argentina, under different light and water availability conditions. Seedling establishment is one of the most risky stages of plants, especially in arid and semiarid regions, where low water availability and high solar radiation influence its emergence, development and survival. In seasonally dry xerophytic forests occurring in North-Western Córdoba, central Argentina, five neotropical species of Acacia co-exist: A. aroma, A. caven, A. atramentaria, A. gilliesii and A. praecox. With the aim to evaluate growth variables and survival of these five species seedlings, in response to water stress and different light availability conditions, a greenhouse experiment was undertaken from March to June of 2010. Although small differences were found between species (F = 5.66, p = 0.001), all of them showed high percentages of seedling survival in response to different light and water treatments, suggesting that seedlings would be tolerant to water stress and could be established both in light and shade. On the other hand, although all species showed an increase in growth in light conditions and without water stress, we have found some trends towards a greater growth in the seedlings ofA. aroma, A. caven and A. atramentaria when compared to those of A. praecox and A. gilliessi in most of the variables considered (F = 41.9, p < 0.0001; F = 7.06, p < 0.0001; F = 53.59, p < 0.0001). This pattern was confirmed through a cluster analysis that classified the species in two main groups. These results, together with others already reported, would indicate a regenerative niche differentiation that might be favoring the regional coexistence of these five species in semiarid forests in central Argentina.

  10. Ecological contingency in the effects of climatic warming on forest herb communities

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Harrison, S.; Damschen, E.I.; Grace, J.B.

    2010-01-01

    Downscalingfromthe predictions ofgeneral climatemodels is critical to current strategies for mitigating species loss caused by climate change. A key impediment to this downscaling is that we lack a fully developed understanding of howvariation in physical, biological, or land-use characteristics mediates the effects of climate change on ecological communities within regions. We analyzed change in understory herb communities over a 60-y period (1949/1951-2007/ 2009) in a complexmontane landscape (the SiskiyouMountains, Oregon) where mean temperatures have increased 2 ??C since 1948, similar to projections for other terrestrial communities. Our 185 sites included primary and secondary-growth lower montane forests (500-1.200 m above sea level) and primary upper montane to subalpine forests (1,500-2,100 m above sea level). In lower montane forests, regardless of land-use history, we found multiple herbcommunity changes consistent with an effectively drier climate, including lower mean specific leaf area, lower relative cover by species of northern biogeographic affinity, and greater compositional resemblance to communities in southerly topographic positions. At higher elevations we found qualitatively different andmoremodest changes, including increases in herbs of northern biogeographic affinity and in forest canopy cover. Our results provide communitylevel validation of predicted nonlinearities in climate change effects.

  11. Deep and wide valleys drive nested phylogeographic patterns across a montane bird community

    PubMed Central

    Robin, V. V.; Vishnudas, C. K.; Gupta, Pooja; Ramakrishnan, Uma

    2015-01-01

    Montane species distributions interrupted by valleys can lead to range fragmentation, differentiation and ultimately speciation. Paleoclimatic fluctuations may accentuate or reduce such diversification by temporally altering the extent of montane habitat and may affect species differentially. We examined how an entire montane bird community of the Western Ghats—a linear, coastal tropical mountain range—responds to topographic valleys that host different habitats. Using genetic data from 23 species (356 individuals) collected across nine locations, we examined if different species in the community reveal spatial concordance in population differentiation, and whether the timing of these divergences correlate with climatic events. Our results reveal a nested effect of valleys, with several species (10 of 23) demonstrating the oldest divergences associated with the widest and deepest valley in the mountain range, the Palghat Gap. Further, a subset of these 10 species revealed younger divergences across shallower, narrower valleys. We recovered discordant divergence times for all valley-affected montane birds, mostly in the Pleistocene, supporting the Pliestocene-pump hypotheses and highlighting the role of climatic fluctuations during this period in driving species evolution. A majority of species remain unaffected by valleys, perhaps owing to geneflow or extinction–recolonization dynamics. Studying almost the entire community allowed us to uncover a range of species’ responses, including some generalizable and other unpredicted patterns. PMID:26085588

  12. Deep and wide valleys drive nested phylogeographic patterns across a montane bird community.

    PubMed

    Robin, V V; Vishnudas, C K; Gupta, Pooja; Ramakrishnan, Uma

    2015-07-07

    Montane species distributions interrupted by valleys can lead to range fragmentation, differentiation and ultimately speciation. Paleoclimatic fluctuations may accentuate or reduce such diversification by temporally altering the extent of montane habitat and may affect species differentially. We examined how an entire montane bird community of the Western Ghats--a linear, coastal tropical mountain range--responds to topographic valleys that host different habitats. Using genetic data from 23 species (356 individuals) collected across nine locations, we examined if different species in the community reveal spatial concordance in population differentiation, and whether the timing of these divergences correlate with climatic events. Our results reveal a nested effect of valleys, with several species (10 of 23) demonstrating the oldest divergences associated with the widest and deepest valley in the mountain range, the Palghat Gap. Further, a subset of these 10 species revealed younger divergences across shallower, narrower valleys. We recovered discordant divergence times for all valley-affected montane birds, mostly in the Pleistocene, supporting the Pliestocene-pump hypotheses and highlighting the role of climatic fluctuations during this period in driving species evolution. A majority of species remain unaffected by valleys, perhaps owing to geneflow or extinction-recolonization dynamics. Studying almost the entire community allowed us to uncover a range of species' responses, including some generalizable and other unpredicted patterns.

  13. Trade-offs in seedling growth and survival within and across tropical forest microhabitats

    PubMed Central

    Inman-Narahari, Faith; Ostertag, Rebecca; Asner, Gregory P; Cordell, Susan; Hubbell, Stephen P; Sack, Lawren

    2014-01-01

    For niche differences to maintain coexistence of sympatric species, each species must grow and/or survive better than each of the others in at least one set of conditions (i.e., performance trade-offs). However, the extent of niche differentiation in tropical forests remains highly debated. We present the first test of performance trade-offs for wild seedlings in a tropical forest. We measured seedling relative growth rate (RGR) and survival of four common native woody species across 18 light, substrate, and topography microhabitats over 2.5 years within Hawaiian montane wet forest, an ideal location due to its low species diversity and strong species habitat associations. All six species pairs exhibited significant performance trade-offs across microhabitats and for RGR versus survival within microhabitats. We also found some evidence of performance equivalence, with species pairs having similar performance in 26% of comparisons across microhabitats. Across species, survival under low light was generally positively associated with RGR under high light. When averaged over all species, topography (slope, aspect, and elevation) explained most of the variation in RGR attributable to microhabitat variables (51–53%) followed by substrate type (35–37%) and light (11–12%). However, the relative effects of microhabitat differed among species and RGR metric (i.e., RGR for height, biomass, or leaf area). These findings indicate that performance trade-offs among species during regeneration are common in low-diversity tropical forest, although other mechanisms may better explain the coexistence of species with small performance differences. PMID:25614790

  14. Disease dynamics of red-spotted newts and their anuran prey in a montane pond community.

    PubMed

    Rothermel, Betsie B; Miller, Debra L; Travis, Emilie R; Gonynor McGuire, Jessica L; Jensen, John B; Yabsley, Michael J

    2016-02-25

    Long-term monitoring of amphibians is needed to clarify population-level effects of ranaviruses (Rv) and the fungal pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd). We investigated disease dynamics of co-occurring amphibian species and potential demographic consequences of Rv and Bd infections at a montane site in the Southern Appalachians, Georgia, USA. Our 3-yr study was unique in combining disease surveillance with intensive population monitoring at a site where both pathogens are present. We detected sub-clinical Bd infections in larval and adult red-spotted newts Notophthalmus viridescens viridescens, but found no effect of Bd on body condition of adult newts. Bd infections also occurred in larvae of 5 anuran species that bred in our fishless study pond, and we detected co-infections with Bd and Rv in adult newts and larval green frogs Lithobates clamitans. However, all mortality and clinical signs in adult newts and larval anurans were most consistent with ranaviral disease, including a die-off of larval wood frogs Lithobates sylvaticus in small fish ponds located near our main study pond. During 2 yr of drift fence monitoring, we documented high juvenile production in newts, green frogs and American bullfrogs L. catesbeianus, but saw no evidence of juvenile recruitment in wood frogs. Larvae of this susceptible species may have suffered high mortality in the presence of both Rv and predators. Our findings were generally consistent with results of Rv-exposure experiments and support the purported role of red-spotted newts, green frogs, and American bullfrogs as common reservoirs for Bd and/or Rv in permanent and semi-permanent wetlands.

  15. Measurement and modeling of rainfall interception by two differently aged secondary forests in upland eastern Madagascar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prasad Ghimire, Chandra; Adrian Bruijnzeel, L.; Lubczynski, Maciek W.; Ravelona, Maafaka; Zwartendijk, Bob W.; van Meerveld, H. J. (Ilja)

    2017-02-01

    Secondary forests occupy a larger area than old-growth rain forests in many tropical regions but their hydrological functioning is still poorly understood. In particular, little is known about the various components of evapotranspiration in these possibly vigorously regenerating forests. This paper reports on a comparison of measured and modeled canopy interception losses (I) from a semi-mature (ca. 20 years) and a young (5-7 years) secondary forest in the lower montane rain forest zone of eastern Madagascar. Measurements of gross rainfall (P), throughfall (Tf), and stemflow (Sf) were made in both forests for one year (October 2014-September 2015) and the revised analytical model of Gash et al. (1995) was tested for the first time in a tropical secondary forest setting. Overall measured Tf, Sf and derived I in the semi-mature forest were 71.0%, 1.7% and 27.3% of incident P, respectively. Corresponding values for the young forest were 75.8%, 6.2% and 18.0%. The high Sf for the young forest reflects the strongly upward thrusting habit of the branches of the dominant species (Psiadia altissima), which favours funneling of P. The value of I for the semi-mature forest is similar to values reported for old-growth tropical lower montane rain forests elsewhere but I for the younger forest is higher than reported for similarly aged tropical lowland forests. These findings can be explained largely by the prevailing low rainfall intensities and the frequent occurrence of small rainfall events. The revised analytical model was able to reproduce measured cumulative I at the two sites accurately and succeeded in capturing the variability in I associated with the seasonal variability in rainfall intensity, provided that Tf-based values for the average wet-canopy evaporation rates were used instead of values derived with the Penman-Monteith equation.

  16. Long-term Patterns of Climate, Tree Growth, and Tree Mortality in Permanent Forest Plots of Hawaii Island

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ostertag, R.; Buckley, W.; Cordell, S.; Giambelluca, T. W.; Giardina, C. P.; Inman-Narahari, F.; Litton, C. M.; Nullet, M.; Sack, L.; Sibley, A.; VanDeMark, J.

    2014-12-01

    Long-term permanent vegetation plots provide opportunities for in-depth examinations of forest dynamics and climate. We used Center for Tropical Forest Science (CTFS) methodology to establish 4-ha forest dynamics plots in two contrasting climates on Hawaii Island. We established a montane wet forest dynamics plot in a site with 1150 m elevation, mean annual temperature (MAT) of 16.0 C, and mean annual precipitation (MAP) of 3440 mm. A second plot was established in a lowland dry forest site at 240 m elevation, 20.0 C MAT, and 835 mm MAP. The lowland wet forest site averaged only one month per year with < 100 mm rainfall (considered a dry season month), while the lowland dry forest had 12 dry season months. All trees greater or equal to 1 cm diameter were tagged, mapped, and followed from 2008/2009 to 2013/2014 as part of a 5-year census, and a subset of trees were measured annually. Climate variables measured were shortwave and longwave radiation, air temperature, photosynthetically active radiation, relative humidity, windspeed, soil moisture, and rainfall. At both sites, rainfall was the best predictor of annual growth rates. Rainfall and soil moisture were the two variables that demonstrated the greatest interannual variation; coefficients of variation were 36.7% and 61.6% for rainfall at the montane wet forest and lowland dry forest sites, respectively, and 13.4% and 66.1% for soil moisture at the two sites. Preliminary results from the five-year resurvey demonstrate that Hawaiian trees grow slowly, averaging 0.05 cm/y among 19 species in the montane wet forest, at much slower rates for the 15 species in the lowland dry forest plot. Preliminary mortality rates are 11.8% in the montane wet forest and 14.5% in the lowland dry forest. Forest dynamics appear highly related to water availability, even in wet forests, and are likely to be sensitive to climate change, under which reduced rainfall is predicted for much of the Hawaiian Islands.

  17. Pigment patterns and photoprotection of anthocyanins in the young leaves of four dominant subtropical forest tree species in two successional stages under contrasting light conditions.

    PubMed

    Zhu, H; Zhang, T J; Zhang, P; Peng, C L

    2016-09-01

    Light-driven subtropical forest succession is a dynamic process in which mesophytic climax communities replace heliophytic ones. Juvenile leaves (particularly mesophytic ones) are sensitive to high irradiances. To determine the photoprotection strategy that juvenile leaves use during subtropical forest succession, anthocyanin accumulation patterns were investigated in the young leaves of two mid-successional dominant trees (i.e., Schima superba and Castanopsis fissa) and two late-successional dominant trees (i.e., Cryptocarya concinna and Acmena acuminatissima) grown in 100% (FL) and 25% (LL) of full sunlight. All four tree species produced anthocyanins in their juvenile leaves when <50% of chlorophylls and carotenoids had developed. Higher anthocyanin concentrations accumulated in the young leaves grown in FL than in those grown in LL and in late-successional than in mid-successional trees. The juvenile leaves of late-successional trees were subjected to higher light-induced photoinhibition than those of mid-successional trees, despite of the fact that the leaves of late-successional trees showed greater non-photochemical quenching than those of mid-successional trees. Under LL conditions, photosystem II excitation pressure (1 - qP) was significantly higher in the juvenile leaves of late-successional trees than those of mid-successional trees. Under either FL or LL conditions, anthocyanin concentrations in juvenile leaves were negatively related to the light compensation point in mature leaves across species. However, anthocyanin concentrations were positively related to the antioxidant capacity of juvenile leaves. These results indicate that anthocyanin accumulation in the juvenile leaves of subtropical dominant trees during forest community succession is a flexible photoprotective response to ambient irradiances according to leaf sensitivity to light.

  18. Responses of CO(2), N(2)O and CH(4) fluxes between atmosphere and forest soil to changes in multiple environmental conditions.

    PubMed

    Yan, Junhua; Zhang, Wei; Wang, Keya; Qin, Fen; Wang, Wantong; Dai, Huitang; Li, Peixue

    2014-01-01

    To investigate the effects of multiple environmental conditions on greenhouse gas (CO2 , N2 O, CH4 ) fluxes, we transferred three soil monoliths from Masson pine forest (PF) or coniferous and broadleaved mixed forest (MF) at Jigongshan to corresponding forest type at Dinghushan. Greenhouse gas fluxes at the in situ (Jigongshan), transported and ambient (Dinghushan) soil monoliths were measured using static chambers. When the transported soil monoliths experienced the external environmental factors (temperature, precipitation and nitrogen deposition) at Dinghushan, its annual soil CO2 emissions were 54% in PF and 60% in MF higher than those from the respective in situ treatment. Annual soil N2 O emissions were 45% in PF and 44% in MF higher than those from the respective in situ treatment. There were no significant differences in annual soil CO2 or N2 O emissions between the transported and ambient treatments. However, annual CH4 uptake by the transported soil monoliths in PF or MF was not significantly different from that at the respective in situ treatment, and was significantly lower than that at the respective ambient treatment. Therefore, external environmental factors were the major drivers of soil CO2 and N2 O emissions, while soil was the dominant controller of soil CH4 uptake. We further tested the results by developing simple empirical models using the observed fluxes of CO2 and N2 O from the in situ treatment and found that the empirical models can explain about 90% for CO2 and 40% for N2 O of the observed variations at the transported treatment. Results from this study suggest that the different responses of soil CO2 , N2 O, CH4 fluxes to changes in multiple environmental conditions need to be considered in global change study.

  19. Controls of Net Ecosystem Exchange at an Old Field, a Pine Plantation, and a Hardwood Forest under Identical Climatic and Edaphic Conditions-Isotopic Studies

    SciTech Connect

    Chanton, J. P.; Mortazavi, B.

    2004-11-04

    During the past year we have submitted two manuscripts. 1. Mortazavi, B., J. Chanton, J.L. Prater, A.C. Oishi, R. Oren and G. Katul. Temporal variability in 13C of respired CO2 in a pine and a hardwood forest subject to similar climatic conditions (in Press). Oecologia 2. Mortazavi, B. and J. P. Chanton. Use of Keeling plots for determining sources of dissolved organic carbon in nearshore and open ocean systems (Published in Limnology and Oceanography (2004) Vol 49 pages 102-108). 3. Mortazavi, B., J. L. Prater, and J. P. Chanton (2004). A field-based method for simultaneous measurements of the 18O and 13C of soil CO2 efflux. Biogeosciences Vol 1:1-16 Most recent products delivered: Mortazavi, B. and J. P. Chanton. Abiotic and biotic controls on the 13C of respired CO2 in the southeastern US forest mosaics and a new technique for measuring the of soil CO2 efflux. Joint Biosphere Stable Isotope Network (US) and Stable Isotopes in Biosphere Atmosphere Exchange (EU) 2004 Meeting, Interlaken, Switzerland, March 31-April 4, 2004. Mortazavi, B., J. Chanton, J.L. Prater, A.C. Oishi, R. Oren and G. Katul. Temporal variability in 13C of respired CO2 in a pine and a hardwood forest subject to similar climatic conditions. American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, San Francisco, USA, December 8-12, 2003. Prater, J., Mortazavi, B. and J. P. Chanton. Measurement of discrimination against 13C during photosynthesis and quantification of the short-term variability of 13C over a diurnal cycle. American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, San Francisco, USA, December 8-12, 2003.

  20. Multiple species of ectomycorrhizal fungi are frequently detected on individual oak root tips in a tropical cloud forest.

    PubMed

    Morris, Melissa H; Pérez-Pérez, Miguel A; Smith, Matthew E; Bledsoe, Caroline S

    2008-10-01

    The ecological importance of ectomycorrhizal (EM) fungi in tropical ecosystems is increasingly recognized, but few studies have used molecular methods to examine EM fungal communities in tropical forests. The diversity and composition of the EM community on Quercus crassifolia in a tropical montane cloud forest in southern Mexico were characterized using DNA sequencing of single root tips. Individual root tips commonly harbored multiple fungal species that resulted in mixed polymerase chain reaction (PCR) products. By cloning and performing gel extractions on mixed PCR samples, we identified two or more EM fungi on 26% of the root tips. When non-EM fungi were considered, this figure increased to 31% of root tips. A total of 44 EM taxa and nine non-EM taxa were detected on roots from 21 soil cores (104 root tips). Taxa in the families Russulaceae, Cortinariaceae, Inocybaceae, and Thelephoraceae were frequent. This is the first study to characterize the belowground EM community in a tropical montane cloud forest.

  1. Physiological and foliar symptom response in the crowns of Prunus serotina, Fraxinus americana and Acer rubrum canopy trees to ambient ozone under forest conditions.

    PubMed

    Schaub, M; Skelly, J M; Zhang, J W; Ferdinand, J A; Savage, J E; Stevenson, R E; Davis, D D; Steiner, K C

    2005-02-01

    The crowns of five canopy dominant black cherry (Prunus serotina Ehrh.), five white ash (Fraxinus americana L.), and six red maple (Acer rubrum L.) trees on naturally differing environmental conditions were accessed with scaffold towers within a mixed hardwood forest stand in central Pennsylvania. Ambient ozone concentrations, meteorological parameters, leaf gas exchange and leaf water potential were measured at the sites during the growing seasons of 1998 and 1999. Visible ozone-induced foliar injury was assessed on leaves within the upper and lower crown branches of each tree. Ambient ozone exposures were sufficient to induce typical symptoms on cherry (0-5% total affected leaf area, LAA), whereas foliar injury was not observed on ash or maple. There was a positive correlation between increasing cumulative ozone uptake (U) and increasing percent of LAA for cherry grown under drier site conditions. The lower crown leaves of cherry showed more severe foliar injury than the upper crown leaves. No significant differences in predawn leaf water potential (psi(L)) were detected for all three species indicating no differing soil moisture conditions across the sites. Significant variation in stomatal conductance for water vapor (g(wv)) was found among species, soil moisture, time of day and sample date. When comparing cumulative ozone uptake and decreased photosynthetic activity (P(n)), red maple was the only species to show higher gas exchange under mesic vs. drier soil conditions (P < 0.05). The inconsistent differences in gas exchange response within the same crowns of ash and the uncoupling relationship between g(wv) and P(n) demonstrate the strong influence of heterogeneous environmental conditions within forest canopies.

  2. Effects of fire on spotted owl site occupancy in a late-successional forest

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Roberts, Susan L.; van Wagtendonk, Jan W.; Miles, A. Keith; Kelt, Douglas A.

    2011-01-01

    The spotted owl (Strix occidentalis) is a late-successional forest dependent species that is sensitive to forest management practices throughout its range. An increase in the frequency and spatial extent of standreplacing fires in western North America has prompted concern for the persistence of spotted owls and other sensitive late-successional forest associated species. However, there is sparse information on the effects of fire on spotted owls to guide conservation policies. In 2004-2005, we surveyed for California spotted owls during the breeding season at 32 random sites (16 burned, 16 unburned) throughout late-successional montane forest in Yosemite National Park, California. Our burned areas burned at all severities, but predominately involved low to moderate fire severity. Based on an information theoretic approach, spotted owl detection and occupancy rates were similar between burned and unburned sites. Nest and roost site occupancy was best explained by a model that combined total tree basal area (positive effect) with cover by coarse woody debris (negative effect). The density estimates of California spotted owl pairs were similar in burned and unburned forests, and the overall mean density estimate for Yosemite was higher than previously reported for montane forests. Our results indicate that low to moderate severity fires, historically common within montane forests of the Sierra Nevada, California, maintain habitat characteristics essential for spotted owl site occupancy. These results suggest that managed fires that emulate the historic fire regime of these forests may maintain spotted owl habitat and protect this species from the effects of future catastrophic fires.

  3. The effect of changing environmental conditions on microwave signatures of forest ecosystems - Preliminary results of the March 1988 Alaskan aircraft SAR experiment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Way, Jobea; Paris, Jack; Kasischke, Eric; Slaughter, Charles; Viereck, Leslie

    1990-01-01

    In preparation for the ESA ERS-1 mission, a series of multitemporal, multifrequency, multipolarization aircraft SAR data sets were acquired near Fairbanks in March 1988. P-, L-, and C-band data were acquired with the NASA/JPL Airborne SAR on five different days over a period of two weeks. The airborne data were augmented with intensive ground calibration data as well as detailed simultaneous in situ measurements of the geometric, dielectric, and moisture properties of the snow and forest canopy. During the time period over which the SAR data were collected, the environmental conditions changed significantly; temperatures ranged from unseasonably warm (1 to 9 C) to well below freezing (-8 to -15 C), and the moisture content of the snow and trees changed from a liquid to a frozen state. The SAR data clearly indicate the radar return is sensitive to these changing environmental factors, and preliminary analysis of the L-band SAR data shows a 0.4 to 5.8 dB increase (depending on polarization and canopy type) in the radar cross section of the forest stands under the warm conditions relative to the cold. These SAR observations are consistent with predictions from a theoretical scattering model.

  4. Monitoring of the CO2 emission and the contents of microbial biomass in agroecosystems on gray forest soils of the Cisbaikal region under conditions of fluoride pollution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pomazkina, L. V.

    2015-08-01

    The influence of the technogenic pollution of gray forest soils in the forest-steppe zone of the Cisbaikal region with fluorides emitted by aluminum smelters on the functioning and state of local agroecosystems was studied within the framework of a long-term agroecological monitoring program. Hydrothermic conditions of the growing season during the monitoring period (1997-2012) were compared with the climatic norm (1961-1990). It was found that the adverse effect of the technogenic pollution on the agroecosystem becomes more pronounced during the years with abnormal weather conditions. An increase in the CO2 emission into the atmosphere as a response of the microbial complex to the rise in the air temperatures was characterized by the linear dependence irrespectively of the degree of soil contamination. The methods of systems analysis were applied to generalize the results. The considered agroecosystem was studied as the system of particular components (soil-microorganisms-plants-atmosphere) integrated by the carbon fluxes. The regimes of the agroecosystem functioning and the ecological loads on it were estimated on the basis of data on the fluxes of net mineralized and (re)immobilized carbon. The environmental factors affecting the state and functioning of the agroecosystem were identified.

  5. Forested wetland habitat

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Duberstein, Jamie A.; Krauss, Ken W.; Kennish, Michael J.

    2015-01-01

    A forested wetland (swamp) is a forest where soils are saturated or flooded for at least a portion of the growing season, and vegetation, dominated by trees, is adapted to tolerate flooded conditions. A tidal freshwater forested wetland is a forested wetland that experiences frequent but short-term surface flooding via tidal action, with average salinity of soil porewater less than 0.5 g/l. It is known locally as tidal várzea in the Amazon delta, Brazil. A tidal saltwater forested wetland (mangrove forest) is a forested wetland that experiences frequent but short-term surface flooding via tidal action, with average salinity often exceeding 3 g/l and reaching levels that can exceed seawater. Mangrove ecosystems are composed of facultative halophytes that generally experience better growth at moderate salinity concentrations.

  6. Artificial nest experiments in a fragmented neotropical cloud forest

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Trujillo, G.; Ahumada, J.A.

    2005-01-01

    We conducted artificial nest experiments in a Neotropical montane forest in the eastern Andes, Colombia, in order to test the effect of placing the nests in forest fragments or continuous forests, at two nest heights and for two different climatic seasons. Predation was not consistently different between nests placed in fragments and controls. However, we found that nests on the ground had a higher daily probability of being predated than nests in the understory. Also, daily nest mortality rate (DNM) was higher in the wet season than in the dry season. Most of the predated nests were attributed to mammals (56%), and predation occurred mostly on the ground (78%). Our estimates of DNM are quite low (= 0.023) and similar to another Neotropical montane forest and other Neotropical sites. Comparisons of DNM between Neotropical and temperate sites suggests that predation rates are similar. Our results suggest that fragmentation may not have a large negative impact in nest predation for bird populations breeding in fragments compared to other sites in tropical and temperate regions. ?? The Neotropical Ornithological Society.

  7. Distribution and relative abundance of forest birds in relation to burn severity in southeastern Arizona

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kirkpatrick, C.; Conway, C.J.; Jones, P.B.

    2006-01-01

    The frequency of wild and prescribed fires in montane forests of the southwestern United States has increased after a century of fire suppression and subsequent fuels accumulation. To assess the effects of recent fires (median time since fire = 6 yr) on the montane forest bird community, we surveyed birds in 8 Sky Island mountain ranges in southeastern Arizona, USA, and examined how the distribution (i.e., presence-absence) of 65 species and relative abundance of 16 species correlated with evidence of severe and less severe fire at >1,500 survey points. We detected associations between fire and bird presence-absence for 17% of the 65 species analyzed and between fire and bird relative abundance for 25% of the 16 species analyzed. Most species (73%) were positively associated with burned areas and displayed stronger associations (i.e., more extreme odds ratios) with survey points that had evidence of severe as opposed to less severe fire. Positive associations with severe fire were strong (>3 to 1 odds) for western wood-pewee (Contopus sordidulus) and house wren (Troglodytes aedon), and negative associations with severe fire were strong for warbling vireo (Vireo gilvus) and red-breasted nuthatch (Sitta canadensis). Although recent fires appear to have had a positive effect on the distribution and relative abundance of several montane forest bird species in the region, these species are not the open-woodland birds that we would have expected to have benefited from fire based on previous research. Nevertheless, our results confirm associations between fire and bird presence-absence and relative abundance reported previously for 7 species of birds. Our results also provide new information for Grace's warbler (Dendroica graciae) and greater pewee (C. pertinax), 2 species for which fire data were formerly lacking. Managers can use these data to make and test predictions about the effects of future fires, both severe and less severe, on montane forest birds in the

  8. Microclimatic measurements in neotropical forest, grassland and desert, with faunal observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cloudsley-Thompson, J. L.; Cloudsley, A.

    1984-12-01

    Air temperatures and relative humidities were recorded at a height of about 2 m above ground, at ground level and under fallen leaves, rocks, or down holes in rainforest, montane forest, grassland and desert in Central and tropical South America, during August and September, 1983. The results are compared with similar results previously obtained in tropical Africa. Measurements were also made down the burrows of tarantulas in Panama; and the influence of radiation on the activities of leaf-cutting ants was noted.

  9. Quantitative Measures of Immersion in Cloud and the Biogeography of Cloud Forests

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lawton, R. O.; Nair, U. S.; Ray, D.; Regmi, A.; Pounds, J. A.; Welch, R. M.

    2010-01-01

    Sites described as tropical montane cloud forests differ greatly, in part because observers tend to differ in their opinion as to what constitutes frequent and prolonged immersion in cloud. This definitional difficulty interferes with hydrologic analyses, assessments of environmental impacts on ecosystems, and biogeographical analyses of cloud forest communities and species. Quantitative measurements of cloud immersion can be obtained on site, but the observations are necessarily spatially limited, although well-placed observers can examine 10 50 km of a mountain range under rainless conditions. Regional analyses, however, require observations at a broader scale. This chapter discusses remote sensing and modeling approaches that can provide quantitative measures of the spatiotemporal patterns of cloud cover and cloud immersion in tropical m