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Issue-Based Studies
  • Causes, consequences, and regional extent of calcium depletion in the forests of the Appalachian Plateau.
    The objective is to determine dendrochronological, dendrochemical, and biochemical sampling, coupled with soil and water sampling, can be used to differentiate high stress, high risk areas from low stress, low risk areas in forests of the Delaware River Basin. The study will combine forestry and hydrological research at an intensive monitoring area in the Catskills with regional measurements at USFS FHM and FIA plots, and USGS water monitoring stations and water quality surveys.
  • Forest biomass and production in the Delaware River Basin: Augmenting and verifying FIA-based estimates of carbon stocks and fluxes.
    This project will provide detailed estimates of carbon storage and flux, and will use enhanced measurements at FIA plots to develop and validate ecosystem process models that are typically applied at large spatial scales. USGS monitoring of surface water quality and soil nutrients will improve estimates of carbon export at the intensive sites and regional scales.
  • Protocols for Identification and Monitoring of Forests Vulnerable to Non-native Invasive Pests.
    Better methods are needed to identify and monitor nonnative forest pests that are commonly introduced through Eastern U.S. ports. FIA inventory data will be analyzed with physiograpic, climatic, and pest distribution data to create maps of forest vulnerability to specific pests. Indicators of forest vulnerability will be developed at intensive research sites. Hydrologic data from the USGS will be used to track the effects of infestations on nutrient status and export from the landscape.
  • Forest Fragmentation and associated ecosystem changes in the Delaware River Basin.
    Landscape characteristics affect ecosystem processes, nutrient export from forests, and the spread of invasive pests. Remote sensing and GIS technology will be used at intensive research sites to characterize forest fragmentation, determine ecosystem processes affected by fragmentation, and improve predictive models. Multiple sources of monitoring information will be linked to accurately characterize landscapes, improve ground-truthing, and thus increase the resolution of coverages.
  • The effect of terrestrial ecosystem health and land use on the hydrology, habitat, and water quality of the Delaware River and Estuary.
    Large rivers can serve as integrators for assessing the effect of multiple stresses on broad landscapes. Watersheds are thus useful landscape delineators for assessing regional changes in ecosystem function. Process-based and empirical regional models will be used to predict the combined and individual effects of multiple environmental stresses (such as land use change, atmospheric deposition, erosion, and others) on aquatic ecosystems in the Watershed. Model predictions will be compared with measured data at specific monitoring stations along the main stem of the Delaware River. Management scenarios to reduce ecosystem degradation will then be recommended based on the results of this analysis.

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Last Update 04/11//03