Tree mortality is a key driver of forest dynamics and its occurrence is projected to increase in the future due to climate change. Despite recent advances in our understanding of the physiological mechanisms leading to death, we still lack robust indicators of mortality risk that could be applied at the individual tree scale. Here, we build on a previous contribution exploring the differences in growth level between trees that died and survived a given mortality event to assess whether changes in temporal autocorrelation, variance, and synchrony in time-series of annual radial growth data can be used as early warning signals of mortality risk.
Climate change-induced tree mortality is occurring worldwide, at increasingly larger scales and with increasing frequency. How climate change-induced tree mortality could affect the ecology and carbon (C) sink capacity of soils remains unknown. This study investigated regional-scale drought-induced tree mortality, based on events that occurred after a very dry year (2012) in the Carpathians mountain range (Romania), which caused mortality in three common conifer species: Scots pine, Black pine, and Silver fir.
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