The effects of climate change elicit changes in upland and freshwater coastal forests by altering the physical conditions that influence species distributions and plant morphology. Prime examples are found along the mid-Atlantic and southeastern coasts of the US. 'Ghost forests' are developing in these regions where salt stress and tidal flooding prevent forest regeneration and coastal storms exacerbate tree mortality.
Interactive Responses of Red Cedar to Press-pulse Disturbances
Findings from a study of windthrown red cedar (Juniperus virginiana) revealed a nonadditive response to climate change: actively adapting to sea-level rise increases the vulnerability of red cedar to storm events. Read more here.
Community Reassembly in Coastal Freshwater Forest
Using >20 years of field data from forest islands in FL, we identified a reassembly trajectory in which forest was replaced by shrubs, which were replaced by herbaceous salt marsh along tidal flooding gradient. Read more here.