Where lightning struck in a forest pic.twitter.com/vn5FEEv0FT — World and Science (@WorldAndScience) 22. November 2017
Tag Archives: forest
High-Fiber Salad Bar May Help Lagomorphs Survive Climate Change
In some mountain ranges, Earth’s warming climate is driving rabbit relatives known as pikas to higher elevations or wiping them out. But University of Utah biologists discovered that roly-poly pikas living in rockslides near sea level in Oregon can survive hot weather by eating more moss than any other mammal.
“Our work shows pikas can eat unusual foods like moss to persist in strange environments,” says biology professor Denise Dearing, senior author of the new study, published online on Dec. 18, 2013 in the February 2014 issue of Journal of Mammalogy. “It suggests that they may be more resistant to climate change than we thought.” (more…)
AUSTIN, Texas — Two species of tawny brown singing mice that live deep in the mountain cloud forests of Costa Rica and Panama set their boundaries by emitting high-pitched trills, researchers at The University of Texas at Austin have discovered.
Although males of both the Alston’s singing mouse (Scotinomys teguina) and Chiriqui singing mouse (S. xerampelinus sing to attract mates and repel rivals within their respective species, the findings show for the first time that communication is being used to create geographic boundaries between species.
In this case, the smaller Alston’s mouse steers clear of its larger cousin, the Chiriqui. (more…)
Serena Lee aspires to increase our understanding of people living with “invisible disabilities.” Amy Stuyvesant wants to figure out how changes in hurricane activity are helping or hindering the forests of Puerto Rico.
Although their subjects of their research are unrelated, these two graduating seniors share a key distinction. Thanks to the Wasserman Undergraduate Scholars Program, they are pursuing high-level research that they expect to have an impact far beyond UCLA. (more…)
To Robert Green, light contains more than meets the eye: it contains fingerprints of materials that can be detected by sensors that capture the unique set of reflected wavelengths. Scientists have used the technique, called imaging spectroscopy, to learn about water on the moon, minerals on Mars and the composition of exoplanets. Green’s favorite place to apply the technique, however, is right here on the chemically rich Earth, which is just what he and colleagues achieved this spring during NASA’s Hyperspectral Infrared Imager (HyspIRI) airborne campaign.
“We have ideas about what makes up Earth’s ecosystems and how they function,” said Green, of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., who is principal investigator of the campaign’s Airborne Visible/Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (AVIRIS) instrument. “But a comprehensive understanding requires us to directly measure these things and how they change over landscapes and from season to season.” (more…)
PASADENA, Calif. – An area of the Amazon rainforest twice the size of California continues to suffer from the effects of a megadrought that began in 2005, finds a new NASA-led study. These results, together with observed recurrences of droughts every few years and associated damage to the forests in southern and western Amazonia in the past decade, suggest these rainforests may be showing the first signs of potential large-scale degradation due to climate change.
An international research team led by Sassan Saatchi of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., analyzed more than a decade of satellite microwave radar data collected between 2000 and 2009 over Amazonia. The observations included measurements of rainfall from NASA’s Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission and measurements of the moisture content and structure of the forest canopy (top layer) from the Seawinds scatterometer on NASA’s QuikScat spacecraft. (more…)
A new University of Colorado Boulder study shows for the first time that episodes of reduced precipitation in the southern Rocky Mountains, especially during the 2001-02 drought, greatly accelerated development of the mountain pine beetle epidemic.
The study, the first ever to chart the evolution of the current pine beetle epidemic in the southern Rocky Mountains, compared patterns of beetle outbreak in the two primary host species, the ponderosa pine and lodgepole pine, said CU-Boulder doctoral student Teresa Chapman. The current mountain pine beetle outbreak in the southern Rockies — which range from southern Wyoming through Colorado and into northern New Mexico –is estimated to have impacted nearly 3,000 square miles of forests, said Chapman, lead study author. (more…)
To preserve forest health, the best management decision may be to do nothing
In newscasts after intense wind and ice storms, damaged trees stand out: snapped limbs, uprooted trunks, entire forests blown nearly flat.
In a storm’s wake, landowners, municipalities and state agencies are faced with important financial and environmental decisions.
A study by Harvard University researchers, supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and published in the journal Ecology, yields a surprising result: when it comes to the health of forests, native plants and wildlife, the best management decision may be to do nothing. (more…)