Forests

Forest News -- ScienceDaily Forest Biomes. Read all about forests, including forest ecology, carbon uptake, and how human activities are affecting forests.

  • Billions of gallons of water saved by thinning forests
    on April 24, 2018 at 8:02 pm

    There are too many trees in Sierra Nevada forests, say scientists. That may come as a surprise to those who see dense, verdant forests as signs of a healthy environment. After all, green is good, right? Not necessarily. When it comes to the number of trees in California forests, bigger isn't always better. […]

  • Hungry birds as climate change drives food 'mismatch'
    on April 23, 2018 at 5:51 pm

    Warmer springs create a 'mismatch' where hungry chicks hatch too late to feast on abundant caterpillars, new research shows. […]

  • Small changes in rainforests cause big damage to fish ecosystems
    on April 19, 2018 at 5:09 pm

    Using lasers, researchers have connected, arranged and merged artificial cells, paving the way for networks of artificial cells acting as tissues. […]

  • Cities and communities in the US losing 36 million trees a year
    on April 18, 2018 at 6:13 pm

    Nationally, urban/community tree cover declined from 42.9 percent to 42.2 percent between 2009-2014. This translates to losing an estimated 36 million trees or approximately 175,000 acres of tree cover annually. […]

  • Honeybees are struggling to get enough good bacteria
    on April 17, 2018 at 3:57 pm

    Modern monoculture farming, commercial forestry and even well-intentioned gardeners could be making it harder for honeybees to store food and fight off diseases, a new study suggests. […]

  • Warming climate could speed forest regrowth in eastern US
    on April 16, 2018 at 10:56 pm

    Warming climate could speed the natural regrowth of forests on undeveloped or abandoned land in the eastern United States, according to a new study. Previous research has shown that the succession from field to forest can happen decades sooner in the southeastern US than in the Northeast. But it wasn't obvious why. A new study points to temperature as the major factor influencing the pace of reforestation. […]

  • Logging in tropical forests jeopardizing drinking water
    on April 16, 2018 at 6:24 pm

    Researchers have found that increasing land clearing for logging in Solomon Islands -- even with best management strategies in place -- will lead to unsustainable levels of soil erosion and significant impacts to downstream water quality. […]

  • Climate change mitigation project threatens local ecosystem resilience in Ethiopia
    on April 16, 2018 at 4:15 pm

    To increase forest cover in the Global South in order to mitigate climate change does not always have positive effects, as shown in a new study in southern Ethiopia. It can also threaten biodiversity and the survival of unique alpine plants. […]

  • Predicting which trees are at greatest risk of beetle invasion
    on April 16, 2018 at 12:57 pm

    This study shows that the composition of forests is more important than other factors when predicting where the destructive pest will strike next. […]

  • Large wildfires bring increases in annual river flow
    on April 13, 2018 at 1:38 pm

    Large wildfires cause increases in stream flow that can last for years or even decades, according to a new analysis of 30 years of data from across the continental United States. […]

  • The changing chemistry of the Amazonian atmosphere
    on April 11, 2018 at 9:41 pm

    Researchers have been debating whether nitrogen oxides (NOx) can affect levels of OH radicals in a pristine atmosphere but quantifying that relationship has been difficult. Now, researchers have found that accompanying the increase of NOx concentration from urban pollution, daytime peak OH concentrations in the rainforest skyrocketed, increasing by at least 250 percent. These increased levels of OH concentrations in the Amazon atmosphere could lead to changes in atmospheric chemistry, cloud formation, and rainfall. […]

  • Tree rings provide vital information for improved climate predictions
    on April 11, 2018 at 3:10 pm

    Using a decade-long sequence of annual growth rings from pine trees, scientists have introduced a highly advanced technique for tracking the carbon metabolism of plants and its environmental controls. […]

  • Biodiversity: 3 new rainbow chameleon species discovered
    on April 11, 2018 at 3:10 pm

    Madagascar is a chameleon paradise. A team of researchers has now discovered three new species, among them a beautifully colored rainbow chameleon. These species are all restricted to very small ranges, and are probably highly threatened. […]

  • New source of global nitrogen discovered
    on April 5, 2018 at 6:09 pm

    Not all of the nitrogen on the planet comes from the atmosphere, according to a new study. Up to a quarter comes from Earth's bedrock. The discovery could greatly improve climate change projections.&nbs […]

  • To prevent collapse of tropical forests, protect their shape
    on March 30, 2018 at 9:13 pm

    Scientists have made a fundamental discovery about how fires on the edges of tropical forests control their shape and stability. The study implies that when patches of tropical forest lose their natural shape it could contribute to the catastrophic transformation of that land from trees to grass. […]

  • Fossils highlight Canada-Russia connection 53 million years ago
    on March 29, 2018 at 1:54 pm

    A new 53 million-year-old insect fossil called a scorpionfly discovered at B.C.'s McAbee fossil bed site bears a striking resemblance to fossils of the same age from Pacific-coastal Russia, giving further evidence of an ancient Canada-Russia connection. […]

  • Salvage logging is often a pretext for harvesting wood
    on March 27, 2018 at 1:39 pm

    An increasing proportion of the world's protected forests are subject to extensive logging activities. The practice is called 'salvage logging' and allegedly aims to protect, e.g. areas of windthrow against bark beetle infestation. However, a new study has found that this instrument is used far too often. […]

  • Alberta's boreal forest could be dramatically altered by 2100 due to climate change
    on March 26, 2018 at 3:01 pm

    Half of Alberta's upland boreal forest is likely to disappear over the next century due to climate change, a new study shows. The upland forest will be replaced after wildfire by open woodland or grassland, according to research from biologists. […]

  • Jaguars and well-managed logging concessions can coexist, say conservationists
    on March 23, 2018 at 2:48 pm

    Logging activities in biodiverse forests can have a huge negative impact on wildlife, particularly large species such as big cats, but a new study proves that the Western Hemisphere's largest cat species -- the jaguar (Panthera onca) -- can do well in logging concessions that are properly managed. […]

  • Wood pellets: Renewable, but not carbon neutral
    on March 22, 2018 at 6:09 pm

    A return to firewood is bad for forests and the climate. […]

  • Drought-induced changes in forest composition amplify effects of climate change
    on March 21, 2018 at 7:53 pm

    The face of American forests is changing, due to climate change-induced shifts in rainfall and temperature that are causing shifts in the abundance of numerous tree species, according to a new article. The result means some forests in the eastern U.S. are already starting to look different, but more important, it means the ability of those forests to soak up carbon is being altered as well, which could in turn bring about further climate change. […]

  • How trees coexist: Understanding biodiversity
    on March 21, 2018 at 3:08 pm

    One of the most fascinating topics in ecology is the exploration of interactions between plants, specifically in long-lived organisms, such as trees. In this context, it is generally assumed that tree-tree interactions are dominated by competition for resources such as light, water or nutrients. […]

  • Amazon deforestation is close to tipping point
    on March 19, 2018 at 4:42 pm

    Scientists considered climate change and indiscriminate use of fire to calculate that deforestation rates ranging from 20 percent to 25 percent could turn Amazon's hydrological cycle unable to support its ecosystem. […]

  • Soil fungi may help determine the resilience of forests to environmental change
    on March 16, 2018 at 7:38 pm

    A major new study reveals that soil fungi could play a significant role in the ability of forests to adapt to environmental change. […]

  • Marine ecologists study the effects of giant kelp on groups of organisms in the underwater forest...
    on March 14, 2018 at 6:49 pm

    When British naturalist Charles Darwin traveled to the Galapagos Islands in 1835, he took notice of the giant kelp forests ringing the islands. He believed that if those forests were destroyed, a significant number of species would be lost. These underwater ecosystems, Darwin believed, could be even more important than forests on land. […]

  • Cash payments prompt tropical forest users to harvest less
    on March 14, 2018 at 4:54 pm

    An experiment conducted with 1,200 villagers in five developing countries found that when people are given cash to conserve, they cut down fewer trees both while they are being paid and after payments cease. […]

  • Growing need for urban forests as urban land expands
    on March 14, 2018 at 2:19 pm

    New research projecting urban land growth and updating urban forest values suggests that urbanization and urban forests are likely to be one the most important forest influences and influential forests of the 21st Century. […]

  • Plants faring worse than monkeys in increasingly patchy forests of Costa Rica
    on March 12, 2018 at 7:54 pm

    A new study shows that cattle ranching, agriculture and other human activities breaking up Costa Rican forests into isolated patchy fragments, are causing more problems for native plant populations than for monkey species sharing the same habitat. […]

  • Elephant declines imperil Africa's forests
    on March 12, 2018 at 7:05 pm

    Poaching and habitat loss have reduced forest elephant populations in Central Africa by 63 percent since 2001. This poses consequences not only for elephants but also for the region's forests, a new study finds. Without intervention to stop poaching, as much as 96 percent of Central Africa's forests will undergo major changes in tree-species composition and structure as local populations of elephants disappear and surviving populations are crowded into ever-smaller forest remnants. […]

  • Carbon could be locked in forests
    on March 9, 2018 at 5:52 pm

    Argonne researchers have found that in the next 100 years, already existing reforestation in the country could help topsoil absorb an additional 2 billion tons of carbon. […]