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Sturdy red oak trees currently dominate northeastern forests like the ones surrounding New York City. But will they continue to do so in the future, as climate change alters temperatures and precipitation patterns? That’s one question that Angelica Patterson is trying to answer. She’s a doctoral candidate within Columbia University’s Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences and the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, and she studies how plants respond to climate change.

Trees may not be able to pick up and leave when the climate gets uncomfortable, but they do migrate over generations. As the planet heats up, many species have been moving northward, chasing the cooler temperatures they’re used to. When an important tree species becomes locally extinct, it can influence other plants and animals and dramatically change the overall composition of the forest. Red oak trees are one of those keystone species.

That’s why Patterson is in the midst of a greenhouse experiment that is investigating how flexibly red oak trees respond to high temperatures. Studying red oak seedlings from the New York region, she plans to find out whether the trees’ rates of photosynthesis and respiration change in a hotter environment. And if so, do those changes help them tolerate the heat, or do they make them more vulnerable to it? The work will help to show whether New York’s red oak seedlings will continue to take root and thrive under a warming climate, or whether the species will die out locally, with major consequences for the rest of the forest.

In addition to being a scientist, Patterson is a science educator at Black Rock Forest in the Hudson Valley, and an advocate for diversity, equity, and inclusion. In 2016, she was awarded a Campbell Award from the Columbia Alumni Association for her leadership roles in two graduate groups: Women in Science at Columbia and the Students of Color Alliance.

https://blogs.ei.columbia.edu/2021/02/11/angelica-patterson-forests-climate-change/

 

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1 hour ago, iris123 said:

Sturdy red oak trees currently dominate northeastern forests like the ones surrounding New York City. But will they continue to do so in the future, as climate change alters temperatures and precipitation patterns? That’s one question that Angelica Patterson is trying to answer. She’s a doctoral candidate within Columbia University’s Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences and the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, and she studies how plants respond to climate change.

Trees may not be able to pick up and leave when the climate gets uncomfortable, but they do migrate over generations. As the planet heats up, many species have been moving northward, chasing the cooler temperatures they’re used to. When an important tree species becomes locally extinct, it can influence other plants and animals and dramatically change the overall composition of the forest. Red oak trees are one of those keystone species.

That’s why Patterson is in the midst of a greenhouse experiment that is investigating how flexibly red oak trees respond to high temperatures. Studying red oak seedlings from the New York region, she plans to find out whether the trees’ rates of photosynthesis and respiration change in a hotter environment. And if so, do those changes help them tolerate the heat, or do they make them more vulnerable to it? The work will help to show whether New York’s red oak seedlings will continue to take root and thrive under a warming climate, or whether the species will die out locally, with major consequences for the rest of the forest.

In addition to being a scientist, Patterson is a science educator at Black Rock Forest in the Hudson Valley, and an advocate for diversity, equity, and inclusion. In 2016, she was awarded a Campbell Award from the Columbia Alumni Association for her leadership roles in two graduate groups: Women in Science at Columbia and the Students of Color Alliance.

https://blogs.ei.columbia.edu/2021/02/11/angelica-patterson-forests-climate-change/

 

I always find these types of study intriguing, though I do wonder a little at this one if she's looking at temperature in isolation. Red Oaks were never the dominant species of  oak on the Eastern Seaboard until Europeans turned up and reduced the white oaks and increased the reds due to it's faster growth and superior timber.

It grows well in the Southern States and all over Europe and happily copes with temperatures up to 40 degrees and it also adapts well to heatwave situations and high CO2 levels - far better than most oaks. In the UK it's probably the best oak for drier situations. 

The more relevant problem facing the oaks in the North Eastern US is the fungal disease that according to the news ten or so years ago was going to wipe out all the oaks in the UK - so called Sudden Oak Death.  This disease moves quicker in warmer conditions and would be far more of a serious threat in a warming climate. And besides, there's already been at least two studies into the effects of increased CO2 levels and heat waves on Red Oaks that found they are well adapted to rising temperatures. 

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Lets play 'spot the climate crisis'...

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17 hours ago, Shrub said:

I always find these types of study intriguing, though I do wonder a little at this one if she's looking at temperature in isolation. Red Oaks were never the dominant species of  oak on the Eastern Seaboard until Europeans turned up and reduced the white oaks and increased the reds due to it's faster growth and superior timber.

It grows well in the Southern States and all over Europe and happily copes with temperatures up to 40 degrees and it also adapts well to heatwave situations and high CO2 levels - far better than most oaks. In the UK it's probably the best oak for drier situations. 

The more relevant problem facing the oaks in the North Eastern US is the fungal disease that according to the news ten or so years ago was going to wipe out all the oaks in the UK - so called Sudden Oak Death.  This disease moves quicker in warmer conditions and would be far more of a serious threat in a warming climate. And besides, there's already been at least two studies into the effects of increased CO2 levels and heat waves on Red Oaks that found they are well adapted to rising temperatures. 

Well it certainly is a refreshing change to get a decent well thought out comment on this thread :t:

I think there are plenty of studies going on as to whether plants and animals will cope with changing climate. This one seems to be about looking to the future, but we have had a few recently worrying about the predicament of the environment in the present here.

Our mountainous area of North Germany has been badly affected by the bark beetle and drought. So much o that they are probably having to plant different species to cope

https://www.dw.com/en/germany-forest-dying/a-54330242

In Hamburg we have a problem with horse chestnut trees

For the first time in years, less trees have been felled than were planted in Hamburg. But one sad development will probably not be stopped: soon chestnuts will no longer be part of the cityscape. First the good news: With around 224,000 street trees, Hamburg has the largest number of trees per 1,000 inhabitants in a German city . There are 132 street trees per 1000 inhabitants - in Munich, for example, there are only 74. In addition, in 2020, for the first time in years, less street trees were felled than were planted in Hamburg.

But despite the generally positive development, there is also very bad news. Since 2014, more and more chestnuts have been dying in Hamburg - there are now 6000 of them in the Hanseatic city, but new ones are no longer being planted. This is because the chestnuts are attacked by a complex disease for which there is still no antidote. The bark disease ensures that the infected chestnuts die off within a very short time

If there is not another miracle after all and we find some remedy, we will probably lose the remaining 6,000 chestnuts. I have to tell you that this is very sad news, ”said Kerstan. On the other hand, the Hamburg elms can be saved. In order to protect the 2000 remaining trees from Dutch elm disease, they are now being vaccinated :D

We also seem to have more and more plants from southern Europe and also insects etc moving north as the climate gets warmer.One interesting botanist plots the movement of Germany's fauna and notes the establishment of invasive species along the motorways and he especially looks at the lay bys to find these plants(seeds) which he say's are usually in the muddy tyres of the lorries

 

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1 hour ago, iris123 said:

Well it certainly is a refreshing change to get a decent well thought out comment on this thread :t:

I think there are plenty of studies going on as to whether plants and animals will cope with changing climate. This one seems to be about looking to the future, but we have had a few recently worrying about the predicament of the environment in the present here.

Our mountainous area of North Germany has been badly affected by the bark beetle and drought. So much o that they are probably having to plant different species to cope

https://www.dw.com/en/germany-forest-dying/a-54330242

In Hamburg we have a problem with horse chestnut trees

For the first time in years, less trees have been felled than were planted in Hamburg. But one sad development will probably not be stopped: soon chestnuts will no longer be part of the cityscape. First the good news: With around 224,000 street trees, Hamburg has the largest number of trees per 1,000 inhabitants in a German city . There are 132 street trees per 1000 inhabitants - in Munich, for example, there are only 74. In addition, in 2020, for the first time in years, less street trees were felled than were planted in Hamburg.

But despite the generally positive development, there is also very bad news. Since 2014, more and more chestnuts have been dying in Hamburg - there are now 6000 of them in the Hanseatic city, but new ones are no longer being planted. This is because the chestnuts are attacked by a complex disease for which there is still no antidote. The bark disease ensures that the infected chestnuts die off within a very short time

If there is not another miracle after all and we find some remedy, we will probably lose the remaining 6,000 chestnuts. I have to tell you that this is very sad news, ”said Kerstan. On the other hand, the Hamburg elms can be saved. In order to protect the 2000 remaining trees from Dutch elm disease, they are now being vaccinated :D

We also seem to have more and more plants from southern Europe and also insects etc moving north as the climate gets warmer.One interesting botanist plots the movement of Germany's fauna and notes the establishment of invasive species along the motorways and he especially looks at the lay bys to find these plants(seeds) which he say's are usually in the muddy tyres of the lorries

 

Wow, is it really that low a number of trees per 1,000 inhabitants in German cities? London has more or less one tree per person! Because of the nature of the farming here there's more trees in the towns and cities than in the countryside.

We unfortunately have the same problem here with Horse Chestnuts - it's reckoned as many as half the trees here have it to some degree, plenty have died though plenty recover and there's even evidence of trees having the disease yet showing no symptoms! Reminds me of something, can't put my finger on it...!

The other transporter of pests and diseases was / is ornamental horticulture. The EU's plant passport system have cleaned the problems up pretty well (once nurseries stopped lending them to their mates in the trade who didn't have one!) The problems with the Horse Chestnuts almost certainly got in this way, the bacterium causing it has hopped from the Indian Horse Chestnut, now fairly common in parks and larger gardens.

Flora has always been on the move, either due to animals or climate but there's no question that man has speeded this process up and has often unwittingly introduced diseases that the indigenous plants can't cope with, Dutch Elm Disease being the most devastating and obvious one. 

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In 1971, before science was hijacked by politicians, The Washington Post and NASA said the new ice age would begin as early as 2021...

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These people are truly insane...:rofl:

 

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Nothing say's unprecedented man made global warming quite like -31 degrees in New Mexico...

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2 hours ago, Blupanther said:

Nothing say's unprecedented man made global warming quite like -31 degrees in New Mexico...

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That's weird. Just glancing at the picture and it looks like the wind arrows are actually moving!

Well, it does to me!

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Just now, Gambo said:

That's weird. Just glancing at the picture and it looks like the wind arrows are actually moving!

Well, it does to me!

Step away from the whisky bottle Gambo...:D

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Like much of the Northern hemisphere, China is having record cold, but is running out of coal...

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