Browsing by Subject "CONIFEROUS FOREST"

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  • Hagner, M.; Romantschuk, M.; Penttinen, O. -P.; Egfors, A.; Marchand, C.; Augustsson, A. (2018)
    The present study addresses toxicological properties of metal contaminated soils, using glassworks sites in south-easternl Sweden as study objects. Soil from five selected glassworks sites as well as from nearby reference areas were analysed for total and water-soluble metal concentrations and general geochemical parameters. A battery of biotests was then applied to assess the toxicity of the glassworks soil environments: a test of phytotoxicity with garden cress (Lepidium sativum); the BioTox(TM) test for toxicity to bacteria using Vibrio fischeri; and analyses of abundancies and biomass of nematodes and enchytraeids. The glassworks-and reference areas were comparable with respect to pH and the content of organic matter and nutrients (C, N, P), but total metal concentrations (Pb, As, Ba, Cd and Zn) were significantly higher at the former sites. Higher metal concentrations in the water-soluble fraction were also observed, even though these concentrations were low compared to the total ones. Nevertheless, toxicity of the glassworks soils was not detected by the two ex situ tests; inhibition of light emission by V. fischeri could not be seen, nor was an effect seen on the growth of L. sativum. A decrease in enchytraeid and nematode abundance and biomass was, however, observed for the landfill soils as compared to reference soils, implying in situ toxicity to soil-inhabiting organisms. The confirmation of in situ bioavailability and negative effects motivates additional studies of the risk posed to humans of the glassworks villages. (C) 2017 Published by Elsevier B.V.
  • Böttcher, Kristin; Markkanen, Tiina; Thum, Tea; Aalto, Tuula; Aurela, Mika; Reick, Christian H.; Kolari, Pasi; Arslan, Ali N.; Pulliainen, Jouni (2016)
    The objective of this study was to assess the performance of the simulated start of the photosynthetically active season by a large-scale biosphere model in boreal forests in Finland with remote sensing observations. The start of season for two forest types, evergreen needle-and deciduous broad-leaf, was obtained for the period 2003-2011 from regional JSBACH (Jena Scheme for Biosphere-Atmosphere Hamburg) runs, driven with climate variables from a regional climate model. The satellite-derived start of season was determined from daily Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectrometer (MODIS) time series of Fractional Snow Cover and the Normalized Difference Water Index by applying methods that were targeted to the two forest types. The accuracy of the satellite-derived start of season in deciduous forest was assessed with bud break observations of birch and a root mean square error of seven days was obtained. The evaluation of JSBACH modelled start of season dates with satellite observations revealed high spatial correspondence. The bias was less than five days for both forest types but showed regional differences that need further consideration. The agreement with satellite observations was slightly better for the evergreen than for the deciduous forest. Nonetheless, comparison with gross primary production (GPP) determined from CO2 flux measurements at two eddy covariance sites in evergreen forest revealed that the JSBACH-simulated GPP was higher in early spring and led to too-early simulated start of season dates. Photosynthetic activity recovers differently in evergreen and deciduous forests. While for the deciduous forest calibration of phenology alone could improve the performance of JSBACH, for the evergreen forest, changes such as seasonality of temperature response, would need to be introduced to the photosynthetic capacity to improve the temporal development of gross primary production.
  • Peltoniemi, Mikko; Aurela, Mika; Böttcher, Kristin; Kolari, Pasi; Loehr, John; Hokkanen, Tatu; Karhu, Jouni; Linkosalmi, Maiju; Tanis, Cemal Melih; Metsamaki, Sari; Tuovinen, Juha-Pekka; Vesala, Timo; Arslan, Ali Nadir (2018)
    Ecosystems' potential to provide services, e.g. to sequester carbon, is largely driven by the phonological cycle of vegetation. Timing of phenological events is required for understanding and predicting the influence of climate change on ecosystems and to support analyses of ecosystem functioning. Analyses of conventional camera time series mounted near vegetation has been suggested as a means of monitoring phenological events and supporting wider monitoring of phenological cycle of biomes that is frequently done with satellite earth observation (EO). Especially in the boreal biome, sparsely scattered deciduous trees amongst conifer-dominant forests pose a problem for EO techniques as species phenological signal mix, and render EO data difficult to interpret. Therefore, deriving phonological information from on the ground measurements would provide valuable reference data for earth observed phonology products in a larger scale. Keeping this in mind, we established a network of digital cameras for automated monitoring of phenological activity of vegetation in the boreal ecosystems of Finland. Cameras were mounted at 14 sites, each site having 1-3 cameras. In this study, we used data from 12 sites to investigate how well networked cameras can detect the phenological development of birches (Betula spp.) along a latitudinal gradient. Birches typically appear in small quantities within the dominant species. We tested whether the small, scattered birch image elements allow a reliable extraction of colour indices and the temporal changes therein. We compared automatically derived phenological dates from these birch image elements both to visually determined dates from the same image time series and to independent observations recorded in the phenological monitoring network covering the same region, Automatically extracted season start dates, which were based on the change of green colour fraction in spring, corresponded well with the visually interpreted start of the season, and also to the budburst dates observed in the field. Red colour fraction turned out to be superior to the green colour-based indices in predicting leaf yellowing and fall. The latitudinal gradients derived using automated phenological date extraction corresponded well with the gradients estimated from the phenological field observations. We conclude that small and scattered birch image elements allow reliable extraction of key phonological dates for the season start and end of deciduous species studied here, thus providing important species-specific data for model validation and for explaining the temporal variation in EO phenology products.
  • Palviainen, Marjo; Pumpanen, Jukka; Berninger, Frank; Ritala, Kaisa; Duan, Baoli; Heinonsalo, Jussi; Sun, Hui; Koster, Egle; Köster, Kajar (2017)
    Fire is a major natural disturbance factor in boreal forests, and the frequency of forest fires is predicted to increase due to climate change. Nitrogen (N) is a key determinant of carbon sequestration in boreal forests because the shortage of N limits tree growth. We studied changes in N pools and fluxes, and the overall N balance across a 155-year non stand replacing fire chronosequence in sub-arctic Pinus sylvestris forests in Finland. Two years after the fire, total ecosystem N pool was 622 kg ha(-1) of which 16% was in the vegetation, 8% in the dead biomass and 76% in the soil. 155 years after the fire, total N pool was 960 kg ha(-1), with 27% in the vegetation, 3% in the dead biomass and 69% in the soil. This implies an annual accumulation rate of 2.28 kg ha(-1) which was distributed equally between soil and biomass. The observed changes in N pools were consistent with the computed N balance +2.11 kg ha(-1) yr(-1) over the 155-year post-fire period. Nitrogen deposition was an important component of the N balance. The biological N fixation increased with succession and constituted 9% of the total N input during the 155 post-fire years. N2O fluxes were negligible (<0.01 kg ha(-1) yr(-1)) and did not differ among post-fire age classes. The number and intensity of microbial genes involved in N cycling were lower at the site 60 years after fire compared to the youngest and the oldest sites indicating potential differences in soil N cycling processes. The results suggest that in sub-arctic pine forests, the non-stand-replacing, intermediate severity fires decrease considerably N pools in biomass but changes in soil and total ecosystem N pools are slight. Current fire-return interval does not seem to pose a great threat to ecosystem productivity and N status in these sub-arctic forests.
  • Rautiainen, Miina; Lukes, Petr (2015)
    Boreal forests exhibit strong seasonal dynamics in their reflectance spectra during the short, snow-free growing period. This short communication paper reports an analysis of the seasonality of boreal forest spectra from the end of snowmelt until the time of maximal leaf area. We apply a forest reflectance model (FRT) to estimate the seasonal contribution of understow vegetation to forest reflectance from a time series of three Earth Observing 1 (EO-1) Hyperion images acquired in May, June and July. The reflectance simulations are based on detailed seasonal series of leaf area index and understory spectra measurements carried out in ten stands at the Hyytiala Forestry Field Station in Finland. Our results show that the contribution of understory to boreal forest reflectance is high in the visible domain, but it drops at the red edge and stays relatively low and constant in near infrared (NIR). Throughout the growing season, the contribution of the understory remains approximately the same in the NIR domain, whereas larger changes can be observed in the visible domain. (C) 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc.