Navigation Links
Live fast, die young true for forests too

Trees in the world¹s most productive forests -- forests that add the most new growth each year -- also tend to die young, according to a U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) study published in a recent issue of the journal Ecology Letters. This discovery could help scientists predict how forests will respond to ongoing and future environmental changes.

"One implication of this fast turnover rate is that the world¹s most productive forests may be those likely to respond most quickly to such things as climatic change," said Nate Stephenson, a USGS research ecologist in Three Rivers, Calif., and lead author of the article.

"You can view a forest like a bank account," said Stephenson. "As long as deposits and withdrawals are similar, your balance remains stable. But if the deposits or withdrawals are disrupted, the balance changes."

In productive forests, such as tropical forests growing on rich soils, the rates of both "deposits" (tree births) and "withdrawals" (tree deaths) are high. But if tree births suddenly stopped, or if tree death rates doubled, the numbers of trees in these forests would be halved in just 30 years.

In contrast, said Stephenson, in less productive forests, such as coniferous forests growing at high latitudes, the same changes could take more than a century to occur.

Another implication of the study is that environmental changes considered beneficial to forests may bring about unexpected forest changes. "Most attention so far has been given to things that stress forests, like increased drought," said USGS scientist Phil van Mantgem, the study's co-author.

"Less attention has been given to the consequences of changes that can increase forest vigor or productivity, like increased rainfall."

Environmental changes that increase productivity of a given forest could lead to more rapid turnover of trees, decreasing the average age of trees. In the long run, such changes might affect wildlife populations th at prefer younger or older forests, said van Mantgem.

Stephenson and van Mantgem pointed out that increased dominance by younger trees could also lead to changes in the amount of carbon stored in forests, though the direction and magnitude of such potential changes are currently unknown and require more research. Atmospheric carbon dioxide, a heat-trapping gas implicated in climatic warming, increases as carbon storage in forests decreases, and decreases as carbon storage in forests increases. Information regarding such potential changes is therefore needed to reduce uncertainties in predicting future climatic changes.


'"/>

Source:United States Geological Survey


Related biology news :

1. Second messenger NAADP shows fast, dose-related impact on satiety cycle
2. High rates of sexually transmitted infections found in young drug users
3. Sharp older brains are not the same as younger brains
4. For some young fish, early gene expression is a clear harbinger of fated lifestyle
5. Thinner and younger
6. Even fish dont swim well when theyre young!
7. Life and death in the hippocampus: what young neurons need to survive
8. Wild meerkats school their young
9. PET imaging shows young smokers quick benefit of quitting
10. In young mice, gregariousness seems to reside in the genes
11. U.N. mulls the protection of Earths forests
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:4/5/2017)... 4, 2017 KEY FINDINGS The ... at a CAGR of 25.76% during the forecast period ... primary factor for the growth of the stem cell ... MARKET INSIGHTS The global stem cell market ... and geography. The stem cell market of the product ...
(Date:4/3/2017)... , April 3, 2017  Data captured ... engineering platform, detected a statistically significant association ... prior to treatment and objective response of ... potential to predict whether cancer patients will ... treatment, as well as to improve both pre-infusion ...
(Date:3/30/2017)... 30, 2017 The research team of The ... (3D) fingerprint identification by adopting ground breaking 3D fingerprint minutiae recovery ... of speed and accuracy for use in identification, crime investigation, immigration ... ... A research team ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... platform specifically designed for life science researchers to analyze and interpret datasets, ... Franklin, who made a major contribution to the discovery of the double-helix ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... BALTIMORE, Md. (PRWEB) , ... October 11, 2017 ... ... for digital pathology, announced today it will be hosting a Webinar titled, “Pathology ... of  Advanced Pathology Associates , on digital pathology adoption best practices and how ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... October 11, 2017 , ... ... Administration (FDA) has granted orphan drug designation to SBT-100, its novel anti-STAT3 (Signal ... the treatment of osteosarcoma. SBT-100 is able to cross the cell membrane and ...
(Date:10/10/2017)... , Oct. 10, 2017 International research firm Parks ... Strategy, will speak at the TMA 2017 Annual Meeting , October ... trends in the residential home security market and how smart safety and ... Parks ... "The residential ...
Breaking Biology Technology: