The University of Michigan’s Edwin S. George Preserve, (aka Michigan Big Woods Plot) is the latest temperate forest to join the CTFS-ForestGEO network. Dr. Christopher Dick is the director of the preserve and said what makes this stand in Livingston County important is that researchers from the University of Michigan have been researching these trees intensively since the 1930s. What this means for researchers is that they now have a standardized way of comparing data from forests around the world. They are currently studying the trees to see what is happening to forests as a result of increased atmospheric carbon.
"At the global level, this forest will now be part of a network of plots used to monitor how biomass and tree mortality change as carbon dioxide continues to increase, as well as the role of forests in taking up some of that excess carbon dioxide," Dr. Dick said. "So this network will be an invaluable tool for tracking forest responses to climate change."
What they expect to see is that a lot of forests, whether tropical or temperate, will experience increased production of wood and increased growth rates. Since the reserve was established in the 1930 , more than 475 research papers have been published using studies carried out wholly or partly at the reserve. More than 80 doctoral dissertations and more than 30 master's theses have resulted from graduate studies at the reserve. Long-term studies at the reserve include decades-old investigations of turtle life histories and reproductive success, a demographic study of the resident white-tailed deer herd, and a study of amphibian communities in 37 ponds on the property.
Visit the CTFS-ForestGEO website to learn more