Navigation Links
Site-specific, long-term research expanding understanding of climate change
Date:12/5/2012

DURHAM, N.H., Dec. 5, 2012 While science has often focused on big-scale, global climate change research, a study recently published in the journal Bioscience suggests that long-term, integrated and site-specific research is needed to understand how climate change affects multiple components of ecosystem structure and function, sometimes in surprising ways.

"Long-term ecological research is important to understanding the effects of a changing climate on our natural resources and so much more," said Michael T. Rains, Director of the Forest Service's Northern Research Station. "With a network of more than 80 experimental forests and decades of monitoring data from these forests, the Forest Service is contributing invaluable information to this and a wide-range of critical research topics."

Research at the Forest Service's Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest in New Hampshire's White Mountains forms the basis for the article "Long-Term Integrated Studies Show Complex and Surprising Effects of Climate Change in the Northern Hardwood Forest," by Peter Groffman of the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies with Forest Service scientists Lindsey Rustad and John Campbell and others. The paper describes how the interplay of climate, forest ecosystem dynamics, and past land use determines how an individual forest might respond to climate change. The paper is available online at: http://nrs.fs.fed.us/pubs/42303

At the Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest, that interplay has produced surprising effects on hydrologic variables such as evapotranspiration, streamflow, and soil moisture and revealed the importance of changes in phenology on water, carbon, and nitrogen fluxes during seasonal transition periods. Scientists have also found surprises in winter climate change effects on plant and animal community composition and ecosystem services as well as the effects of anthropogenic disturbances and land-use history on plant community composition.

"The effects of climate change that we are documenting at the Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest truly affect all components of this forest," according to Rustad. "From winter recreation to Lyme Disease to changes in timber resources, what is happening in the forest is going to affect how people live, and science needs to address those questions."

Data from Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest show unequivocally that the climate has warmed, and temperature matters for species from the minute to the mighty. A warming climate is increasing the length of the growing seasons, as spring is advancing and fall is retreating. This extends the breeding season for birds, but also makes them more susceptible to late season frosts. Less snow in winter means more soil frost, which can damage tree roots and reduce the diversity and abundance of arthropods. Reductions in soil arthropods may directly affect the animals that feed on them, with ripple effects on the entire forest food web.

Warming winters also affect the distribution of pests and pathogens, such as the hemlock woolly adelgid, which are fundamental agents of disturbance in northeast forests. The insect's expansion north has been checked by its inability to tolerate temperatures colder than 13 degrees Fahrenheit, however researchers found that over the past 50 years Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest has experienced a 40 percent decline in days with a mean temperature of 13 degrees Fahrenheit, suggesting a potential for the hemlock woolly adelgid to affect hemlock throughout the tree's entire range within the next 30 years.


'/>"/>

Contact: Jane Hodgins
jmhodgins@fs.fed.us
651-649-5281
USDA Forest Service - Northern Research Station
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Preemies brains reap long-term benefits from Kangaroo Mother Care
2. Preeclampsia poses a significant long-term health risk according to new research from Ben-Gurion U.
3. New long-term antimicrobial catheter developed
4. Is long-term weight loss possible after menopause?
5. Study shows long-term effects of radiation in pediatric cancer patients
6. Model forecasts long-term impacts of forest land-use decisions
7. Long-term preservation: Pensoft Publishers partner with the CLOCKSS Archive
8. Sexual reproduction brings long-term benefits, study shows
9. Long-term research reveals causes and consequences of environmental change
10. Researchers identify proteins that indicate which kidney tumors are most likely to spread
11. Microchoreography: Researchers use synthetic molecule to guide cellular dance
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:10/3/2019)... ... October 02, 2019 , ... Connecticut ... and ongoing support for Connecticut’s innovative, growing companies, today announced that it has ... mobile payments and winner of the 2018 VentureClash competition. , ...
(Date:9/30/2019)... , ... September 30, 2019 ... ... disrupter and leading supplier of innovative human mesenchymal stem/stromal cell (hMSC) biomanufacturing ... product formulations related to “Ready-to-Print” (RTP) cellular product formats (patent number AU ...
(Date:9/25/2019)... ... September 25, 2019 , ... ... through off-the-record collaboration and dialogue, today announces its inaugural South CEO ... Center in Louisiana. , Co-produced by Tulane University, this invitation-only meeting convenes ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:9/17/2019)... ... , ... Tucker, a Labrador retriever, was just a puppy when he began ... lame on his right hip and elbow. At one year of age, Tucker was ... the vet had seen.” He was prescribed pain medications, both oral and injectable, as ...
(Date:9/17/2019)... , ... September 16, 2019 , ... ... via CNBC on Saturday, September 21st @11:00am ET. Check local listings for more ... Ltd. (Credo Biomedical), a molecular diagnostic company from Singapore dedicated to developing ...
(Date:9/11/2019)... (PRWEB) , ... September 10, 2019 , ... ... broadcast 1Q/2020 will educate about the latest developments in genome sequencing analysis. Check ... about the innovation taking place at Rivermap Research & Consulting and will explore ...
(Date:9/8/2019)... ... September 05, 2019 , ... Spartan Bioscience, ... President of Finance for Shopify, has been named Chief Financial Officer. , ... Joel Finlayson as strategic advisors. Additionally, Spartan has hired Steve Edgett as Executive ...
Breaking Biology Technology: