Ecological thresholds, climate extremes, and tree species' distributions across the Pacific coastal United States Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/cr56n4078

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  • Species' distributions across the landscape are perhaps the least understood yet most conspicuous features of life on earth. Ecologists have long studied species' distributions; yet, many questions remain about why species occur where they do. Such questions persist largely because species' distributions are complex systems with challenging properties like non-linearity, high dimensionality, and strong interactions. One impediment to our understanding of species' distributions is the use of standard quantitative approaches, which have limitations when applied to data from complex systems. The objective of this work is to develop tools that can be used to improve our understanding of natural complexity, in particular, factors relating to species’ distributions at large scales. Our study systems are tree species’ distributions from Forest Inventory Analysis (FIA) sites across the Pacific coastal USA. This work advances the detection and measurement of thresholds in response surfaces (e.g. representing tree species’ niches), the evaluation of the consequences of a major change in sampling and measurement methodology associated with the FIA program, and the relationship of climatic extremes and means to tree species’ distributions. For more detailed abstract information, please see the pdf.
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