Alaskas Changing Boreal Forest

Hardcover | June 22, 2006

EditorF. Stuart Chapin, Mark W. Oswood, Keith van Cleve

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The boreal forest is the northern-most woodland biome, whose natural history is rooted in the influence of low temperature and high-latitude. Alaska's boreal forest is now warming as rapidly as the rest of Earth, providing an unprecedented look at how this cold-adapted, fire-prone forestadjusts to change. This volume synthesizes current understanding of the ecology of Alaska's boreal forests and describes their unique features in the context of circumpolar and global patterns. It tells how fire and climate contributed to the biome's current dynamics. As climate warms and permafrost (permanentlyfrozen ground) thaws, the boreal forest may be on the cusp of a major change in state. The editors have gathered a remarkable set of contributors to discuss this swift environmental and biotic transformation. Their chapters cover the properties of the forest, the changes it is undergoing, and thechallenges these alterations present to boreal forest managers. In the first section, the reader can absorb the geographic and historical context for understanding the boreal forest. The book then delves into the dynamics of plant and animal communities inhabiting this forest, and the biogeochemical processes that link these organisms. In the last section theauthors explore landscape phenomena that operate at larger temporal and spatial scales and integrates the processes described in earlier sections. Much of the research on which this book is based results from the Bonanza Creek Long-Term Ecological Research Program. Here is a synthesis of thesubstantial literature on Alaska's boreal forest that should be accessible to professional ecologists, students, and the interested public.

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The boreal forest is the northern-most woodland biome, whose natural history is rooted in the influence of low temperature and high-latitude. Alaska's boreal forest is now warming as rapidly as the rest of Earth, providing an unprecedented look at how this cold-adapted, fire-prone forestadjusts to change. This volume synthesizes curre...

F. Stuart Chapin, Mark W. Oswood, Keith van Cleve, and David L. Verbyla are all at University of Alaska. Leslie A. Viereck is with the Institute of Northern Forestry, USDA Forest Service.

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:368 pages, 6.3 × 9.29 × 1.1 inPublished:June 22, 2006Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195154312

ISBN - 13:9780195154313

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Table of Contents

PART I: Alaska's Past and Present Environment1. The Conceptual Basis of LTER Studies in the Alaskan Boreal Forest2. Regional Overview of Interior Alaska3. State Factor Control of Soil Formation in Interior Alaska4. Climate and Permafrost Dynamics of the Alaskan Boreal Forest5. Holocene Development of the Alaskan Boreal ForestPART II: Forest Dynamics6. Floristic Diversity and Distribution in the Alaskan Boreal Forest7. Successional Processes in the Alaskan Boreal Forest8. Mammalian Herbivore Population Dynamics in the Alaskan Boreal Forest9. Dynamics of Phytophagous Insects and Their Pathogens in Alaskan Boreal Forests10. Running Waters of the Alaskan Boreal ForestPART III: Ecosystem Dynamics11. Controls over Forest Production in Interior Alaska12. The Role of Fine Roots in the Functioning of Alaskan Boreal Forests13. Mammalian Herbivory, Ecosystem Engineering and Ecological Cascades in Alaskan Boreal Forests14. Microbial Processes in the Alaskan Boreal Forest15. Patterns of Biogeochemistry in Alaskan Boreal ForestsPART IV: Changing Regional Processes16. Watershed Hydrology and Chemistry in the Alaskan Boreal Forest: The Central Role of Permafrost17. Fire Trends in the Alaskan Boreal Forest18. Timber Harvest in Interior Alaska19. Climate Feedbacks in the Alaskan Boreal Forest20. Communication of Alaskan Boreal Science with Broader Communities21. Summary and Synthesis: Past and Future Changes in the Alaskan Boreal Forest