Trees on the move?! I know you’re thinking, “Come on, Sarah. Trees can’t move.” And, generally, you would be correct in that statement. Tree species are now, however, in a position where movement may be necessary for survival under changing climatic conditions. How trees will move is under debate within the ecological community, but why trees will move is accepted as a survival strategy related to the adaptation of species. Continue reading
By Kristen Pelz
This past summer, I attended a meeting about aspen ecology and management. I presented my thoughts about how aspen (Populus tremuloides) will respond to widespread lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta) mortality caused by mountain pine beetle (MPB) (Dendroctonus ponderosae). I was nervous and excited to present to a small group of accomplished scientists and high-level managers from around the country. I thought I had a complete theory about why aspen had not increased in the way we had expected following a 1980s MPB outbreak that I studied for my Master’s thesis. But, meeting and talking with many people really broadened my perspective and reminded me—once again—about the importance of avoiding tunnel vision in research. Continue reading
I study trees. I’m an ecologist. Oh, wait. I’m a scientist.
This is something I remind myself of nearly every day. And yet, this statement still catches me off guard at times. Let me tell you a bit about myself, and you’ll understand why.
Like many of you, my academic/professional interest in ecology is intertwined with my upbringing and appreciation for the natural world. Continue reading
By Nate Hough-Snee
Yellow-cedar (Callitropsis nootkatensis) has been rapidly declining across Central British Columbia (BC) and Southeast Alaska (AK) for the last couple decades. Continue reading
By Sarah Bisbing and Kristen Pelz
Following a summer of record high temperatures and extreme drought, we bet you’ll have a hard time imagining the feel of a cool, autumn day. For just a minute, though, let’s go there. Imagine: cool, crisp mornings; piping hot soups and apple pie; thick, wool sweaters; and (our favorite) the true mark of fall’s arrival – the turning of leaves and the coloring of our forests.
Although the eastern U.S. is renowned for its fall color, the western U.S. has its own colorful gem. The quintessential player in fall coloring of the western U.S. is quaking aspen (Populus tremuloides). Continue reading
Check out the latest guest blog post by two of our ecologists, Sarah Bisbing and Kristen Pelz. Sarah and Kristen teamed up with the editors at NREL’s EcoPress blog to compose an article on forest species’ adaptations to wildfire.