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Environmental controls of the northern distribution limit of yellow birch in eastern Canada

Drobyshev, Igor and Asselin, Hugo and Guitard, Marc-Antoine and Genries, A and Bergeron, Yves (2014). Environmental controls of the northern distribution limit of yellow birch in eastern Canada. Canadian journal of forest research. 44:7, 720-731
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Abstract

To evaluate environmental controls of yellow birch (Betula alleghaniensis Britton) distribution at its northern distribution limit in eastern Canada, we analyzed abundance, age structure, biomass accumulation rate, and growth sensitivity to climate of this species at 14 sites along a 200 km latitudinal gradient spanning three bioclimatic domains and reaching frontier populations of this species in western Quebec. We observed a large variability in seedling density across domains and presence of sites with abundant yellow birch regeneration within all three bioclimatic domains. Seedling density was positively correlated to mean age and abundance of yellow birch trees in the canopy, while sapling density was positively associated with dryer habitats. Growth patterns of canopy trees showed no effect of declining temperatures along the south-north gradient. Environmental controls of birch distribution at its northern limit were realized through factors affecting birch regeneration and not growth of canopy trees. At the stand scale, regeneration density was strongly controlled by local site conditions and not by differences in climate among sites. At the regional scale, climate variability could be an indirect driver of yellow birch distribution, affecting disturbance rates and, subsequently, availability of suitable sites for regeneration.

Authors/Creators:Drobyshev, Igor and Asselin, Hugo and Guitard, Marc-Antoine and Genries, A and Bergeron, Yves
Title:Environmental controls of the northern distribution limit of yellow birch in eastern Canada
Series/Journal:Canadian journal of forest research (1208-6037)
Year of publishing :2014
Volume:44
Number:7
Page range:720-731
Number of Pages:12
Publisher:NRC Research Press
Associated Programs and Other Stakeholders:SLU - Environmental assessment > Programme Biodiversity
SLU - Environmental assessment > Programme Forest
SLU - Environmental assessment > Programme Climate
ISSN:1208-6037
Language:English
Publication Type:Journal article
Refereed:Yes
Article category:Scientific peer reviewed
Version:Accepted version
Full Text Status:Public
Subjects:(A) Swedish standard research categories 2011 > 1 Natural sciences > 106 Biological Sciences (Medical to be 3 and Agricultural to be 4) > Botany
(A) Swedish standard research categories 2011 > 1 Natural sciences > 106 Biological Sciences (Medical to be 3 and Agricultural to be 4) > Ecology
Keywords:climatic envelope, disturbance regime, mixed forests, climate change, Betula alleghaniensis
URN:NBN:urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-e-2577
Permanent URL:
http://urn.kb.se/resolve?urn=urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-e-2577
Additional ID:
Type of IDID
Web of Science (WoS)000338998800005
DOI10.1139/cjfr-2013-0511
ID Code:12074
Faculty:S - Faculty of Forest Sciences
Department:(S) > Southern Swedish Forest Research Centre
Deposited By: SLUpub Connector
Deposited On:20 Apr 2015 09:44
Metadata Last Modified:19 Feb 2016 07:59

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