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Windthrow Variability in Central Amazonia

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Climate Sciences Department, 1 Cyclotron Rd., MS74R316C, Berkeley, CA 94720, USA
Department of Environmental Studies, University of Redlands, 1200 E Colton Ave, Redlands, CA 92373, USA
Department of Atmospheric Sciences, University of Sao Paulo, Rua do Matao 1226, Sao Paulo, SP 05508-090, Brazil
Institute of Biology, University of Leipzig, Johannisallee 21, 04103 Leipzig, Germany
Max-Planck-Institute for Biogeochemistry, Hans-Knoell Str. 10, 07745 Jena, Germany
Brazil’s National Institute for Amazonian Research, Manaus-AM, Brazil, Ave. Andre Araujo 2936, Manaus, AM 69060-97, Brazil
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Robert W. Talbot
Atmosphere 2017, 8(2), 28;
Received: 16 November 2016 / Revised: 21 January 2017 / Accepted: 25 January 2017 / Published: 4 February 2017
Windthrows are a recurrent disturbance in Amazonia and are an important driver of forest dynamics and carbon storage. In this study, we present for the first time the seasonal and interannual variability of windthrows, focusing on Central Amazonia, and discuss the potential meteorological factors associated with this variability. Landsat images over the 1998–2010 time period were used to detect the occurrence of windthrows, which were identified based on their spectral characteristics and shape. Here, we found that windthrows occurred every year but were more frequent between September and February. Organized convective activity associated with multicell storms embedded in mesoscale convective systems, such as northerly squall lines (that move from northeast to southwest) and southerly squall lines (that move from southwest to northeast) can cause windthrows. We also found that southerly squall lines occurred more frequently than their previously reported ~50 year interval. At the interannual scale, we did not find an association between El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and windthrows. View Full-Text
Keywords: windthrows; deep convection; squall lines; Central Amazonia windthrows; deep convection; squall lines; Central Amazonia
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Negrón-Juárez, R.I.; Jenkins, H.S.; Raupp, C.F.M.; Riley, W.J.; Kueppers, L.M.; Magnabosco Marra, D.; Ribeiro, G.H.P.M.; Monteiro, M.T.F.; Candido, L.A.; Chambers, J.Q.; Higuchi, N. Windthrow Variability in Central Amazonia. Atmosphere 2017, 8, 28.

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