Ancient Forest Murmers

Friday, December 30, 2005

Water! Flood! Global Warming?

The latest wave of storm has brought yet higher levels in the rivers and flooding in areas that haven’t seen it in years.  The upper tributaries of the Klamath are raging, with the exception of the Trinity with it’s massive “send it to the Westlands” dam.  A quick perusal of the State of California river stage pages (http://cdec.water.ca.gov/river/rivcond.html) will show you the difference.  My guess is that ten feet of river are being held behind the dam.  Oh well, better than the old days where they would have kept all of the river flow.  More water always seems to mean more fish later, so these storms are great news for salmon.

 

 Some are sure to talk about global warming with this warm, intense weather, but those of us who have been around awhile know that this sort of weather was more common in years past.  For now, I'll say it's business as usual, and hope that wet is what we get for a long time to come.  Stay dry!

 
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Wednesday, December 28, 2005

The turn of the New Year in the Redwood forest

With less than 48 hours without rain in the last month, the biological New Year is coming in with a bang!  Today the Klamath River is supposed to go four feet over flood stage, the highest level since 1997.  The winter-run fish will be able to go high upstream without any problems, a good omen for the future of salmonids.  Meanwhile, although the forest appears silent and sleeping, the roots and fungi are doing their thing, re-absorbing the needle cast of this autumn.

 

If you get a chance to take a walk through one of the old growth Redwood groves, take a look into the trailside duff.  Unlike forests in the drier interior, the Redwoods recycle nearly the entire leaf cast of the year, every year.  This means that all the nutrients of the site are in use all the time, little lost and only a little gained in a year, a near-perfect bioengineering feat.  No wonder that a Redwood forest has some of the highest biomass per acre in the world.

 
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Wednesday, December 21, 2005

First Thoughts and Statement of Intent

This blog will be an exploration of the world of the Redwood forest as seen by a resident of Crescent City, the home of Redwood National and State Parks. Included will be knowledge for visitors, including those of a scientific bent. Threats to the forest, it's inhabitants, it's integrity, and it's future health will be topics of consideration. I urge those who have information to share to post comments to the blog. I do not claim omnipotence and may make an error in my reporting. Please alert me through a coment to any discrepancies in my content. It is my stated goal to provide accurate, timely, and useful information. Any help toward this goal will be appreciated.

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