Local Climate (local + climate)

Distribution by Scientific Domains

Selected Abstracts

Host shifting by Operophtera brumata into novel environments leads to population differentiation in life-history traits

Adam J. Vanbergen
Abstract., 1. Operophtera brumata L. (Lepidoptera: Geometridae), a polyphagous herbivore usually associated with deciduous trees such as oak Quercus robur L., has expanded its host range to include the evergreen species heather Calluna vulgaris (L.) Hull and, most recently, Sitka spruce Picea sitchensis (Bong.) Carrière. 2. Phenology, morphology, and survival of O. brumata were measured at several life-history stages in populations from the three different host plant communities sampled from a range of geographical locations. The data were used to test for population differences, reflecting the marked differences in host-plant secondary chemistry, growth form, and site factors such as climate. The hypothesis that spruce-feeding populations originated from populations feeding on moorland, commonly sites of coniferous afforestation, was also tested. 3. Altitude, not host plant species, was the major influence on the timing of adult emergence. An effect of insect population independent of altitude was found, implying that additional unidentified factors contribute to this phenological variation. Larval survival and adult size varied between populations reared on different host plant species. Survival of larvae was affected negatively when reared on the novel host plant, Sitka spruce, versus the natal plant (oak or heather) but oak and heather-sourced insects did not differ in survivorship on Sitka spruce. 4. Host range extension into novel environments has resulted in population differentiation to the local climate, demonstrating that host shifts pose challenges to the herbivore population greater than those offered by the host plant alone. The hypothesis that Sitka spruce feeding populations have arisen predominantly from moorland feeding populations was not supported. [source]

Connecting Atmosphere and Wetland: Energy and Water Vapour Exchange

Peter M. Lafleur
Wetlands are ubiquitous over the globe, comprise a vast array of ecosystem types and are of great ecological and social importance. Their functioning is intimately tied to the atmosphere by the energy and mass exchanges that take place across the wetland,atmosphere boundary. This article examines recent research into these exchanges, with an emphasis on the water vapour exchange. Although broad classes of wetland type, such as fen, bog and marsh, can be defined using ecological or hydrologic metrics, distinct difference in energy exchanges between the classes cannot be found. This arises because there are many factors that control the energy exchanges and interplay of these factors is unique to every wetland ecosystem. Wetlands are more similar in their radiation balances than in the partitioning of this energy into conductive and turbulent heat fluxes. This is especially true of evapotranspiration (ET) rates, which vary considerably among and within wetland classes. A global survey of wetland ET studies shows that location has little to do with ET rates and that variation in rates is largely determined by local climate and wetland characteristics. Recent modelling studies suggest that although wetlands occupy a small portion of the global land surface, their water and energy exchanges may be important in regional and global climates. Although the number of studies of wetland,atmosphere interactions has increased in recent years more research is needed. Five key areas of study are identified: (i) the importance of moss covers, (ii) lack of study in tropical systems, (iii) inclusion of wetlands in global climate models, (iv) importance of microforms in wetlands and their scaling to the whole ecosystem, and (v) the paucity of annual ET measurements. [source]

Objective classification of atmospheric circulation over southern Scandinavia

Maj-Lena Linderson
Abstract A method for calculating circulation indices and weather types following the Lamb classification is applied to southern Scandinavia. The main objective is to test the ability of the method to describe the atmospheric circulation over the area, and to evaluate the extent to which the pressure patterns determine local precipitation and temperature in Scania, southernmost Sweden. The weather type classification method works well and produces distinct groups. However, the variability within the group is large with regard to the location of the low pressure centres, which may have implications for the precipitation over the area. The anticyclonic weather type dominates, together with the cyclonic and westerly types. This deviates partly from the general picture for Sweden and may be explained by the southerly location of the study area. The cyclonic type is most frequent in spring, although cloudiness and amount of rain are lowest during this season. This could be explained by the occurrence of weaker cyclones or low air humidity during this time of year. Local temperature and precipitation were modelled by stepwise regression for each season, designating weather types as independent variables. Only the winter season-modelled temperature and precipitation show a high and robust correspondence to the observed temperature and precipitation, even though <60% of the precipitation variance is explained. In the other seasons, the connection between atmospheric circulation and the local temperature and precipitation is low. Other meteorological parameters may need to be taken into account. The time and space resolution of the mean sea level pressure (MSLP) grid may affect the results, as many important features might not be covered by the classification. Local physiography may also influence the local climate in a way that cannot be described by the atmospheric circulation pattern alone, stressing the importance of using more than one observation series. Copyright © 2001 Royal Meteorological Society [source]

Secondary Production and Its Trophic Basis of Two Mayfly Species in a Subtropical Stream of China

Yunjun Yan
Abstract During June 2003 to June 2004, an investigation on life cycle, production and trophic basis of two species of mayfly in a second-order river of Hanjiang River Basin, Hubei, China was conducted. The results showed Epeorus sinensisUmler and Caenis nigropunctataWu both developed two generations a year. The mean annual production and P/B ratio of E. sinensis were 9.154 g m,2 a,1 dry weight and 16.0, and those of C. nigropunctata were 1.554 g m,2 a,1 and 9.6, respectively. For E. sinensis , the proportions contributing to secondary production of the main food types were: amorphous detritus 33.46%, fungi 10.8%, vascular plant detritus 1.8%, diatoms 53.9%; for C.nigropunctata , the proportions were 70.8%, 6.90%, 3.5% and 18.8%, respectively. Compared with those species reported in North America and Europe, although land use mode and local climate were greatly different in China, life history and trophic basis of the mayflies seemed roughly similar, yet secondary production appeared to be much higher. (© 2006 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim) [source]

Regional climate modulates the canopy mosaic of favourable and risky microclimates for insects

Summary 1,One major gap in our ability to predict the impacts of climate change is a quantitative analysis of temperatures experienced by organisms under natural conditions. We developed a framework to describe and quantify the impacts of local climate on the mosaic of microclimates and physiological states of insects within tree canopies. This approach was applied to a leaf mining moth feeding on apple leaf tissues. 2,Canopy geometry was explicitly considered by mapping the 3D position and orientation of more than 26 000 leaves in an apple tree. Four published models for canopy radiation interception, energy budget of leaves and mines, body temperature and developmental rate of the leaf miner were integrated. Model predictions were compared with actual microclimate temperatures. The biophysical model accurately predicted temperature within mines at different positions within the tree crown. 3,Field temperature measurements indicated that leaf and mine temperature patterns differ according to the regional climatic conditions (cloudy or sunny) and depending on their location within the canopy. Mines in the sun can be warmer than those in the shade by several degrees and the heterogeneity of mine temperature was incremented by 120%, compared with that of leaf temperature. 4.,The integrated model was used to explore the impact of both warm and exceptionally hot climatic conditions recorded during a heat wave on the microclimate heterogeneity at canopy scale. During warm conditions, larvae in sunlight-exposed mines experienced nearly optimal growth conditions compared with those within shaded mines. The developmental rate was increased by almost 50% in the sunny microhabitat compared with the shaded location. Larvae, however, experienced optimal temperatures for their development inside shaded mines during extreme climatic conditions, whereas larvae in exposed mines were overheating, leading to major risks of mortality. 5,Tree canopies act as both magnifiers and reducers of the climatic regime experienced in open air outside canopies. Favourable and risky spots within the canopy do change as a function of the climatic conditions at the regional scale. The shifting nature of the mosaic of suitable and risky habitats may explain the observed uniform distribution of leaf miners within tree canopies. [source]

Persistence of coastal spruce refugia during the Holocene in northern New England, USA, detected by stand-scale pollen stratigraphies

Molly Schauffler
Summary 1 Pollen data from wet, forested hollows in five spruce (Picea) stands on the eastern coast of Maine, USA, reveal that spruce has been well-established (spruce pollen > 6%) for at least 5000 years at four of the sites (Isle au Haut, Schoodic Peninsula, and Roque Island). Spruce became dominant in the fifth stand (Blackwoods, Mount Desert Island) only in the last 2000 years. This is in contrast to pollen stratigraphies from two inland forest hollows and from inland lakes that indicate a significant region-wide increase in the abundance of spruce only 1000 years ago. 2 All five coastal pollen stratigraphies suggest that conditions along the east coast of Maine became cooler and moister sometime between 6000 and 5000 years ago. Mid-Holocene changes in vegetation and sediment accumulation correspond with the timing of rapid increases in tidal amplitude and diurnal mixing of cold water in the Gulf of Maine, suggestive that these resulted in increased marine effects on the local climate at a time that was generally warmer than present. 3 Two inland forest-hollow stratigraphies do not show evidence of mid-Holocene cooling. Coastal effects therefore persisted for several thousand years despite regional climate changes. 4 The pollen data suggest that refugia along the coast (and probably in isolated sites inland), may have played a critical role in allowing the rapid regional expansion of spruce around 1000 years ago. The steep increases in the abundance of spruce pollen in all forest-hollow and lake pollen stratigraphies in northern New England at that time corroborate other evidence of a region-wide shift to cooler and moister conditions. 5 Pollen stratigraphies from small forested hollows provide a means to examine local vegetation dynamics and interpret those dynamics in the context of regional signals. [source]

Temporal dynamics of marginal steppic vegetation over a 26-year period of substantial environmental change

Silvia Matesanz
Abstract Questions: (1) Is climate a strong driver of vegetation dynamics, including interannual variation, in a range margin steppic community? (2) Are there long-term trends in cover and species richness in this community, and are these consistent across species groups and species within groups? (3) Can long-term trends in plant community data be related to variation in local climate over the last three decades? Location: A range margin steppic grassland community in central Germany. Methods: Cover, number and size of all individuals of all plant species present in three permanent 1-m2 plots were recorded in spring for 26 years (1980,2005). Climatic data for the study area were used to determine the best climatic predictor for each plant community, functional group and species variable (annual data and interannual variation) using best subsets regression. Results: April and autumn temperature showed the highest correlation with total cover and species richness and with interannual variations of cover and richness. However, key climate drivers differed between the five most abundant species. Similarly, total cover and number and cover of perennials significantly decreased over time, while no trend was found for the cover and number of annuals. However, within functional groups there were also contrasting species-specific responses. Long-term temperature increases and high interannual variability in both temperature and precipitation were strongly related to long-term trends and interannual variations in plant community data. Conclusions: Temporal trends in vegetation were strongly associated with temporal trends in climate at the study site, with key roles for autumn and spring temperature and precipitation. Dynamics of functional groups and species within groups and their relationships to changes in temperature and precipitation reveal complex long-term and interannual patterns that cannot be inferred from short-term studies with only one or a few individual species. Our results also highlight that responses detected at the functional group level may mask contrasting responses within functional groups. We discuss the implications of these findings for attempts to predict the future response of biodiversity to climate change. [source]

Changing climate and historic-woodland structure interact to control species diversity of the ,Lobarion' epiphyte community in Scotland

Christopher J. Ellis
Abstract Question: How will changing climate and habitat structure interact to control the species diversity of lichen epiphytes? Location: Scotland. Method: Species richness (=diversity) of the epiphyte lichen community known as Lobarion (named after Lobaria pulmonaria) was quantified for 94 Populus tremula stands across Scotland, and compared in a predictive model to seven climate variables and eight measures of woodland structure. An optimum model was selected and used to project Lobarion diversity over the geographic range of the study area, based on IPCC climate change scenarios and hypothetical shifts in woodland structure. Results: Species diversity of the Lobarion community was best explained by three climate variables: (1) average annual temperature; (2) autumn and winter precipitation; in combination with (3) historic-woodland extent. Projections indicate a positive effect of predicted climate change on Lobarion diversity, consistent with the physiological traits of cyanobac-terial lichens comprising the Lobarion. However, the general response to climate is modified significantly by the effect on diversity of historic-woodland extent. Conclusions: Historic-woodland extent may exert an important control over local climate, as well as impacting upon the metapopulation dynamics of species in the Lobarion. In particular, a temporal delay in the response of Lobarion species to changed woodland structure is critical to our understanding of future climate change effects. Future Lobarion diversity (e.g. in the 2050s) may depend upon the interaction of contemporary climate (e.g. 2050s climate) and historic habitat structure (e.g. 1950s woodland extent). This is supported by previous observations for an extinction debt amongst lichen epiphytes, but suggests an extension of simple climate-response models is necessary, before their wider application to lichen epiphyte diversity. [source]

Lake Chivero: A management case study

C. H. D. Magadza
Abstract Lake Chivero in Zimbabwe was shown to be hypereutrophic. Historical data showed that the eutrophication process had been arrested in the late 1970s. However, a combination of poor planning, multiplicity of jurisdiction, mismatch between rate of urbanization and waste management investment, recent changes in the local climate and a permissive, immature political system that called for no public accountability resulted in environmental management breakdown leading to hypereutrophication of the lake. The case of Lake Chivero is presented as an example of a wider global issue regarding the status of environmental management in competition with other priorities in emerging democracies. [source]

Water use (and abuse) and its effects on the crater-lakes of Valle de Santiago, Mexico

Javier Alcocer
Abstract Most Mexicans live in the arid and semiarid regions that represent two-thirds of the Mexican territory, where water is scarce. Natural, as well as human, causes are favouring the degradation of Mexican lakes. There is a clear need to develop and implement sustainable water-use programmes at a catchment scale. However, the accelerated degradation rate of the Mexican lakes means that there will not be enough time to perform whole-basin evaluations to establish sustainable water-use programmes before the lakes dry up. The case of the Valle de Santiago crater-lakes clearly illustrates the declining trend that Mexican inland aquatic resources follow. Vegetation clearance, overgrazing, abatement of phreatic waters and salinization have induced severe erosion and overall desertification (land degradation) in the basin for what, it seems, a long time (i.e. prehispanic times). In this way, human activities could be provoking at least the following negative consequences: a hotter and drier local climate, water scarcity, dust storms and soil salinization. The aquatic (surface and groundwater) resources of the Valle de Santiago basin have been seriously threatened. Two of the four crater-lakes have already dried up and phreatic mantle abatement reaches up to 2.5 m per year. In spite of these facts, no sustainable water-use programme has been established yet. The future scenery of this Mexican basin looks alarmingly like many other basins in the central and northern Mexican territories. [source]

Retrieval of microphysical and morphological properties of volcanic ash plumes from satellite data: Application to Mt Ruapehu, New Zealand

A. J. Prata
Abstract A quantitative analysis of the properties of several Mt Ruapehu, New Zealand, ash plumes has been performed using multispectral satellite data from the AVHRR-2 and ATSR-2 instruments. The analysis includes: identification of the plume from background clouds using the ,reverse' absorption effect in the thermal channels: modelling and retrieval of particle sizes; determination of the plume height from cloud shadows, stereoscopy and meteorological data; and estimates of the mass of fine particles (radii less than 10 ,m). A new spectral technique for identifying opaque, silica-rich ash clouds is demonstrated by utilizing the near-infrared (1.6 ,m) and visible (0.67 ,m) channels of the ATSR-2, and the optical properties of a simple volcanic cloud are presented for use in radiative transfer studies. It is found that the Ruapehu eruption cloud contained silica-rich ash particles with radii generally less than a few micrometres. The distribution of fine particles is monomodal with a dominant mode peak of about 3 ,m radius. Mass loadings of fine particles are found to be in the range ,1 to ,7 mg m,3, and are consistent with estimates of mass loadings of volcanic clouds from eruptions of other volcanoes. The height of the plume top, derived from radiosonde data and plume-top temperatures in the opaque regions, was found to be between 7.5 and 8.5 km, while the plume thickness was estimated to be between 1.5 and 3 km. Cloud height derived from ATSR-2 stereoscopy on a different plume gave heights in the range 5 to 8 km. The results of this study provide important information on the optical properties of nascent volcanic eruption plumes. This information may prove useful in determining the potential effects of volcanic clouds on local climate, and in assessing any hazard to aviation. [source]

Responses of gas exchange and growth in Merkus pine seedlings to expected climatic changes in Thailand

Jarkko Koskela
Abstract Responses of gas exchange and growth in Merkus pine (Pinus merkusii Jungh. et de Vriese) seedlings to changing climate were analysed for high- and low-altitude sites in Thailand. A gas exchange model, based on the optimality approach, derived the effect of drought from the probability of rains. A carbon-and nitrogen-balance growth model applied structural regularities of a tree and a modification of functional balance between foliage and fine roots as growth- guiding rules. Adaptation to local climates was incorporated in the models. The simulations yielded physiologically reasonable behaviour for annual photosynthesis (A) and transpiration (E) in relation to the distributions of precipitation over the course of a year. An annual temperature increase of 2 °C and a prolonged dry season (scenario 2) reduced A by 5,11% and E by 5,8% as compared to present climate (scenario 1). Doubled CO2 concentration and the increased temperature (scenario 3) enhanced A by 56,59% and E by 14%. Simultaneously these changes (scenario 4) increased A by 41,53% and E by 1,5%. Simulated growth in scenario 1 fitted reasonably well to field data. By the age of five years, simulated total biomass (TB) and height (h) were reduced by 31,67% and 12,42%, respectively, in scenario 2 compared to scenario 1. In scenario 3, TB and h increased by 279,330% and 94,191%, and in scenario 4, by 83,241% and 55,69%, respectively. Large increases in TB and h are explained by the exponential growth phase of the young seedlings. These results suggest that climatic changes enhance growth and thus shorten the duration of the grass stage in these seedlings. However, the effects of climatic changes on growth depend strongly on how rainfall seasonality is altered in SE Asia because prolonged drought episodes may retard the fertilizing effects of the increasing CO2 concentration. [source]

Daily patterns of locomotor and sugar-feeding activity of the mosquito Culex annulirostris from geographically isolated populations

Craig R. Williams
Abstract., The daily patterns of locomotor and sugar-feeding activity of virgin female Culex annulirostris from three regions in Australia and a laboratory colony are studied using video techniques in the laboratory. Although all populations display a crepuscular/nocturnal locomotor pattern, significant variation exists between populations, with the pattern of those from southern Australia differing markedly from those in central and northern Australia. It is hypothesized that adaptation of populations to local climates is responsible. Sugar-feeding (inferred from landing on a sugar source) is mostly crepuscular/nocturnal in all populations. The behavioural variation that exists within wide-ranging mosquito species is highlighted, and indicates that significant behavioural differences exist between laboratory colonies and wild-types. [source]