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Juniper Tree-Ring Data from the Kuramin Range (Northern Tajikistan) Reveals Changing Summer Drought Signals in Western Central Asia

1
Yunnan Key Laboratory of International Rivers and Transboundary Eco-Security, Institute of International Rivers and Eco-Security, Yunnan University, Kunming 650500, China
2
Key Laboratory of Tree-ring Physical and Chemical Research of China Meteorological Administration/Xinjiang Laboratory of Tree-Ring Ecology, Institute of Desert Meteorology, China Meteorological Administration, Urumqi 830002, China
3
Institute of Forest Sciences, University of Freiburg, 79106 Freiburg, Germany
4
Regional Climate Group, Department of Earth Science, University of Gothenburg, 40530 Gothenburg, Sweden
5
Institute of Water Problems, Hydroenergy and Ecology, Academy of Science of the Republic of Tajikistan, Dushanbe 734063, Tajikistan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Forests 2019, 10(6), 505; https://doi.org/10.3390/f10060505
Received: 19 May 2019 / Revised: 5 June 2019 / Accepted: 6 June 2019 / Published: 14 June 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Forest Ecophysiology and Biology)
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Abstract

Coniferous forests cover the mountains in many parts of Central Asia and provide large potentials for dendroclimatic studies of past climate variability. However, to date, only a few tree-ring based climate reconstructions exist from this region. Here, we present a regional tree-ring chronology from the moisture-sensitive Zeravshan juniper (Juniperus seravschanica Kom.) from the Kuramin Range (Tajikistan) in western Central Asia, which is used to reveal past summer drought variability from 1650 to 2015 Common Era (CE). The chronology accounts for 40.5% of the variance of the June–July self-calibrating Palmer Drought Severity Index (scPDSI) during the instrumental period (1901 to 2012). Seven dry periods, including 1659–1696, 1705–1722, 1731–1741, 1758–1790, 1800–1842, 1860–1875, and 1931–1987, and five wet periods, including 1742–1752, 1843–1859, 1876–1913, 1921–1930, and 1988–2015, were identified. Good agreements between drought records from western and eastern Central Asia suggest that the PDSI records retain common drought signals and capture the regional dry/wet periods of Central Asia. Moreover, the spectral analysis indicates the existence of centennial (128 years), decadal (24.3 and 11.4 years), and interannual (8.0, 3.6, 2.9, and 2.0 years) cycles, which may be linked with climate forces, such as solar activity and El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO). The analysis between the scPDSI reconstruction and large-scale atmospheric circulations during the reconstructed extreme dry and wet years can provide information about the linkages of extremes in our scPDSI record with the large-scale ocean–atmosphere–land circulation systems. View Full-Text
Keywords: Kuramin Range; Tajikistan; tree rings; drought reconstruction; synoptic climatology analysis Kuramin Range; Tajikistan; tree rings; drought reconstruction; synoptic climatology analysis
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Chen, F.; Zhang, T.; Seim, A.; Yu, S.; Zhang, R.; Linderholm, H.W.; Kobuliev, Z.V.; Ahmadov, A.; Kodirov, A. Juniper Tree-Ring Data from the Kuramin Range (Northern Tajikistan) Reveals Changing Summer Drought Signals in Western Central Asia. Forests 2019, 10, 505.

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