Dendrochronological Modeling of the Effects of Climatic Change on Tree-Ring Width Chronologies from the Chaco Canyon Area, Southwestern United States

Persistent Link:
http://hdl.handle.net/10150/262367
Title:
Dendrochronological Modeling of the Effects of Climatic Change on Tree-Ring Width Chronologies from the Chaco Canyon Area, Southwestern United States
Author:
Fritts, Harold C.; Dean, Jeffrey S.
Affiliation:
Dendrochronological Modeling, Tucson, AZ | Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research, Tucson, AZ
Issue Date:
1992
Rights:
Copyright © Tree-Ring Society. All rights reserved.
Collection Information:
This item is part of the Tree-Ring Research (formerly Tree-Ring Bulletin) archive. It was digitized from a physical copy provided by the Laboratory of Tree-Ring research at The University of Arizona. For more information about this peer-reviewed scholarly journal, please email the Editor of Tree-Ring Research at editor@treeringsociety.org.
Publisher:
Tree-Ring Society
Journal:
Tree-Ring Bulletin
Citation:
Fritts, H.C., Dean, J.S. 1992. Dendrochronological modeling of the effects of climatic change on tree-ring width chronologies from the Chaco Canyon area, southwestern United States. Tree-Ring Bulletin 52:31-58.
Abstract:
Hypotheses about the causes of the growth and decline of the Chacoan regional interaction system in the southwestern United States between A.D. 900 and 1200 are evaluated against tree-ring evidence and the results of an empirical model (PRECON) that computes the statistical relationships between climate and ring-width indices during the 20th century and applies the results to hypothesized precipitation or temperature changes. The statistical responses of 23 indexed conifer ring-width chronologies from New Mexico and Colorado to variations in monthly temperature and precipitation were calculated. Simulated decreases in prior autumn-winter precipitation markedly reduced ring widths, while decreased current summer precipitation was less effective, sometimes reducing ring width or having little effect. Decreased prior winter temperature slightly reduced ring width, while decreased growing season temperature usually increased or did not effect ring widths. Evaluated in terms of these results, the Chaco Canyon area tree-ring record (1) indicates that favorable climatic conditions in the 10th, 11th, and early 12th centuries fostered the growth of the Chacoan system, (2) shows that dry autumn-winter and summer conditions in the middle 1100s contributed to the downfall of the system, (3) does not support the proposition that centuries-long climatic fluctuations evident in southwestern Colorado affected Chaco Canyon, (4) does not support the idea of shifts from summer-to winter-dominant precipitation regimes, and (5) contributes little to assessing the role of anthropogenic environmental change in the collapse of the Chacoan system.
Keywords:
Dendrochronology; Tree Rings; Climatic Change; Dendroclimatology; Forest Trees; Growth Rings; Settlement; Trees; Woody Plants
ISSN:
0041-2198
Additional Links:
http://www.treeringsociety.org

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.language.isoen_USen_US
dc.titleDendrochronological Modeling of the Effects of Climatic Change on Tree-Ring Width Chronologies from the Chaco Canyon Area, Southwestern United Statesen_US
dc.contributor.authorFritts, Harold C.en_US
dc.contributor.authorDean, Jeffrey S.en_US
dc.contributor.departmentDendrochronological Modeling, Tucson, AZ | Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research, Tucson, AZen_US
dc.date.issued1992-
dc.rightsCopyright © Tree-Ring Society. All rights reserved.en_US
dc.description.collectioninformationThis item is part of the Tree-Ring Research (formerly Tree-Ring Bulletin) archive. It was digitized from a physical copy provided by the Laboratory of Tree-Ring research at The University of Arizona. For more information about this peer-reviewed scholarly journal, please email the Editor of Tree-Ring Research at editor@treeringsociety.org.en_US
dc.publisherTree-Ring Societyen_US
dc.identifier.journalTree-Ring Bulletinen_US
dc.identifier.citationFritts, H.C., Dean, J.S. 1992. Dendrochronological modeling of the effects of climatic change on tree-ring width chronologies from the Chaco Canyon area, southwestern United States. Tree-Ring Bulletin 52:31-58.en_US
dc.description.abstractHypotheses about the causes of the growth and decline of the Chacoan regional interaction system in the southwestern United States between A.D. 900 and 1200 are evaluated against tree-ring evidence and the results of an empirical model (PRECON) that computes the statistical relationships between climate and ring-width indices during the 20th century and applies the results to hypothesized precipitation or temperature changes. The statistical responses of 23 indexed conifer ring-width chronologies from New Mexico and Colorado to variations in monthly temperature and precipitation were calculated. Simulated decreases in prior autumn-winter precipitation markedly reduced ring widths, while decreased current summer precipitation was less effective, sometimes reducing ring width or having little effect. Decreased prior winter temperature slightly reduced ring width, while decreased growing season temperature usually increased or did not effect ring widths. Evaluated in terms of these results, the Chaco Canyon area tree-ring record (1) indicates that favorable climatic conditions in the 10th, 11th, and early 12th centuries fostered the growth of the Chacoan system, (2) shows that dry autumn-winter and summer conditions in the middle 1100s contributed to the downfall of the system, (3) does not support the proposition that centuries-long climatic fluctuations evident in southwestern Colorado affected Chaco Canyon, (4) does not support the idea of shifts from summer-to winter-dominant precipitation regimes, and (5) contributes little to assessing the role of anthropogenic environmental change in the collapse of the Chacoan system.en_US
dc.subjectDendrochronologyen_US
dc.subjectTree Ringsen_US
dc.subjectClimatic Changeen_US
dc.subjectDendroclimatologyen_US
dc.subjectForest Treesen_US
dc.subjectGrowth Ringsen_US
dc.subjectSettlementen_US
dc.subjectTreesen_US
dc.subjectWoody Plantsen_US
dc.identifier.citationFritts, H.C., Dean, J.S. 1992. Dendrochronological modeling of the effects of climatic change on tree-ring width chronologies from the Chaco Canyon area, southwestern United States. Tree-Ring Bulletin 52:31-58.en_US
dc.identifier.issn0041-2198-
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10150/262367-
dc.identifier.journalTree-Ring Bulletinen_US
dc.typeArticleen_US
dc.relation.urlhttp://www.treeringsociety.orgen_US
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