Linking Forest Productivity and Tree Growth through Remote Sensing and Tree Ring Analyses

A special issue of Forests (ISSN 1999-4907). This special issue belongs to the section "Forest Inventory, Modeling and Remote Sensing".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 October 2022) | Viewed by 9700

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Dendroecology Lab, Forestry Sciences Faculty, Juarez University of the State of Durango, Durango, Mexico
Interests: forest ecology; dendroecology; climate change; spatial analysis; remote sensing; UAV technology

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Guest Editor
School of Forestry, Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, AZ, USA
Interests: ecological restoration; fire ecology; cordilleran forest ecology

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The intensity and severity of extreme climate events such as droughts are increasing under the influence of ongoing climate warming. As a consequence, forest ecosystems are being impacted in terms of productivity and forest growth, often showing dieback episodes, increased mortality, and decreased forest productivity, with important implications for the global carbon balance. Traditionally, tree ring data are often utilized in the assessment of the forest response to climate at annual to centennial and stand to continent scales. However, these approaches are often local in extent and spatially discontinuous, which makes upscaling to regional and broader levels challenging. Alternatively, remote sensing data allow enhancing spatial evaluations of climate condition–tree growth relationships, from local to global scales. However, there remain many research gaps on how to better link tree ring and remote sensing data, which deserve more attention. Therefore, novel research approaches should aim to fill these existing gaps. This Special Issue titled “Linking Forest Productivity and Tree Growth through Remote Sensing and Tree Ring Analyses” aims to build a stronger consensus of ecological mechanisms encompassed in remote sensing and tree ring proxies of drought or other climate events. Both research and review papers on this topic are welcomed.

Potential topics include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Dendroecological studies carried out at multiple spatial and temporal scales;
  • Observational approaches for disentangling tree ring and remote sensing associations;
  • Advancement of UAV technology applied to tree ring analyses;
  • Linking dendrosciences to remote sensing data to improve drought proxies;
  • Vegetation dynamics under multiple spatial and temporal scales.

Dr. Marín Pompa-García
Dr. Jesús Julio Camarero
Dr. Peter Z. Fule
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • climate change
  • dendroecology
  • drought
  • forest productivity
  • tree ring
  • radial growth
  • remote sensing
  • vegetation dynamics

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

14 pages, 5788 KiB  
Article
Multi-Century Reconstruction of Pandora Moth Outbreaks at the Warmest/Driest Edge of a Wide-Ranging Pinus Species
by Leo O’Neill, Peter Z. Fulé and Richard W. Hofstetter
Forests 2023, 14(3), 444; https://doi.org/10.3390/f14030444 - 21 Feb 2023
Viewed by 1267
Abstract
Pandora moths (Coloradia pandora subsp. davisi Barnes and Benjamin) have been observed to reach epidemic populations on the Kaibab Plateau, resulting in relatively small, localized defoliation events of ponderosa (Pinus ponderosa Lawson). We reconstructed the historical pandora moth outbreak regime using [...] Read more.
Pandora moths (Coloradia pandora subsp. davisi Barnes and Benjamin) have been observed to reach epidemic populations on the Kaibab Plateau, resulting in relatively small, localized defoliation events of ponderosa (Pinus ponderosa Lawson). We reconstructed the historical pandora moth outbreak regime using tree rings and forest health records to explore how exogenous factors, climate, and fire, are related to outbreak dynamics close to the driest range of ponderosa pine. We collected eight tree-ring chronologies dating back 400 years, geographically dispersed around the plateau, and inferred past outbreaks by comparison with non-host tree-ring chronologies, weather records, and historical observations. Eleven outbreaks were detected between 1744 and the present, many of them occurring at all the sites. Outbreaks were found to be synchronous, typically lasting 10 years at 25-year intervals. Interruption of the frequent fire regime that prevailed prior to 1880 was associated with a shift to shorter, less frequent outbreaks. Dry to wet oscillations in climate were correlated with outbreak initiations. Pandora moth outbreaks appear to have been an intrinsic part of the Kaibab Plateau’s forest ecosystems, though more research is needed to understand outbreak effects on the ecosystem and future directions of the moth–host relationship under climate warming. Full article
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25 pages, 13561 KiB  
Article
NDVI Values Suggest Immediate Responses to Fire in an Uneven-Aged Mixed Forest Stand
by Marín Pompa-García, José Alexis Martínez-Rivas, Ricardo David Valdez-Cepeda, Carlos Arturo Aguirre-Salado, Dante Arturo Rodríguez-Trejo, Liliana Miranda-Aragón, Felipa de Jesús Rodríguez-Flores and Daniel José Vega-Nieva
Forests 2022, 13(11), 1901; https://doi.org/10.3390/f13111901 - 12 Nov 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2371
Abstract
Fire modifies vegetation dynamics in terrestrial ecosystems. Abundant literature has studied the post-fire effects with satellite sensors; however, relatively fewer studies have used unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) to assess the dynamics of greenness prior to and immediately following prescribed fires. Using multispectral sensors [...] Read more.
Fire modifies vegetation dynamics in terrestrial ecosystems. Abundant literature has studied the post-fire effects with satellite sensors; however, relatively fewer studies have used unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) to assess the dynamics of greenness prior to and immediately following prescribed fires. Using multispectral sensors mounted on UAVs, we documented the results of the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) as a proxy for pre- and post-fire greenness in a natural forest stand in northern Mexico. Using spectral reflectance techniques and the statistical analyses of Kruskal–Wallis and pairwise Wilcoxon rank-sum tests, statistically significant differences were found in the NDVI values, measured before and after controlled burning (p < 0.05). The results showed an increase in post-fire “greenness” from 0.57 to 0.65. This was interpreted as an immediate change in vegetation activity in the canopy, which could be attributable as a stimulus to heat stress. Complementary spectral indices also reinforce our findings; we recognize that further research is required, for instance, to address the timing of image capture. Our findings demonstrate the potential and some of the challenges associated with the use of UAVs to monitor prescribed fires, while also suggesting the need for more detailed physiological and phenological studies. High spatial and spectral resolution maps of greenness represent a valuable starting point for subsequent temporal monitoring and contribute to the knowledge of fire effects at fine spatial resolutions. Full article
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14 pages, 2573 KiB  
Article
Two Centuries of Drought History in the Center of Chihuahua, Mexico
by Aldo Rafael Martínez-Sifuentes, José Villanueva-Díaz, Juan Estrada-Ávalos, Ramón Trucíos-Caciano, Teodoro Carlón-Allende and Luis Ubaldo Castruita-Esparza
Forests 2022, 13(6), 921; https://doi.org/10.3390/f13060921 - 13 Jun 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2411
Abstract
Droughts are a climatic phenomenon with local, regional, and large-scale repercussions. Historical knowledge of droughts generated by modeled data allows the development of more accurate climate reconstructions to propose better approaches for the management of hydric resources. The objective of this research was [...] Read more.
Droughts are a climatic phenomenon with local, regional, and large-scale repercussions. Historical knowledge of droughts generated by modeled data allows the development of more accurate climate reconstructions to propose better approaches for the management of hydric resources. The objective of this research was to evaluate the association of precipitation and temperature with data from the NLDAS-002 to develop a reconstruction of droughts in the center of Chihuahua, Mexico using the SPEI from tree rings. We also identified the influence of ocean–atmospheric phenomena on the reconstructed drought index. The best association among chronologies was obtained with the earlywood band and accumulated seasonal precipitation from November of the previous year to June of the current year (r = 0.82, p < 0.05) and for temperature from January to July (r = −0.81, p < 0.05). The reconstructed drought index extended from 1775 to 2017 (243 years), where seven extreme drought events were identified. We found significant correlations between the reconstructed Standardized Precipitation Evapotranspiration Index and the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (r = 0.46, p < 0.05), Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (r = −0.34, p < 0.05), Multivariate El Niño Southern Oscillation Index (r = 0.29, p < 0.05), and Southern Oscillation Index (r = −0.22, p < 0.05). The historical reconstruction of hydroclimatology in the center of Chihuahua is important for planning a long-term assessment and for the management of water resources shared by Mexico and the United States. Full article
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12 pages, 3667 KiB  
Article
Assessing the Hydric Deficit on Two Polylepis Species from the Peruvian Andean Mountains: Xylem Vessel Anatomic Adjusting
by Ernesto C. Rodríguez-Ramírez, Doris B. Crispín-DelaCruz, Ginette Ticse-Otarola and Edilson J. Requena-Rojas
Forests 2022, 13(5), 633; https://doi.org/10.3390/f13050633 - 19 Apr 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2682
Abstract
The impact of drought on vessel architecture and function has been broadly assessed for a variety of tree species in the last decades, but the hydraulic plasticity under temperature increase has scarcely been studied. The effect of drought on tree-ring width and specific [...] Read more.
The impact of drought on vessel architecture and function has been broadly assessed for a variety of tree species in the last decades, but the hydraulic plasticity under temperature increase has scarcely been studied. The effect of drought on tree-ring width and specific hydraulic conductivity depends on relict-tree species resilience to climatic adaptability and its wood anatomical responses to climatic oscillations. We assessed the vessel architecture adaptation of two threatened Peruvian Andean Polylepis species (P. rodolfo-vasquezii and P. tarapacana). We found that historical Peruvian drought years differentially affected Polylepis species, where P. rodolfo-vasquezii showed vessel anatomical features significantly sensitive to drought events when contrasted with P. tarapacana. The drought effect influenced the capacity of Polylepis species to adjust the tree-ring width and vessel anatomical traits of their hydraulic system. Our results suggest that drought events influence Polylepis species’ adaptability and resilience to dry periods and could also restrict them from remaining as a part of the Peruvian Andean puna and mountain ecosystems. Full article
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