• Analysis of Urban Heat Islands by Using Multi-Sensor and Multi-Temporal Remote Sensing Images

      Umamaheshwaran, Rajasekar (2011-09-20)
      This doctoral dissertation research has developed models to facilitate in characterization,analysis and monitoring of urban heat islands (UHI). Over the past few years there has been evidence of mass migration of the population towards urban areas which has led to the increase in the number of mega cities (cities with more than 10 million in population) around the world. According to the UN in 2007 around 60% (from 40% in 2000) of world populations was living in urban areas. This increase in population density in and around cities has lead to several problems related to environment such as air quality, water quality, development of Urban Heat Islands (UHI), etc. The purpose of this doctoral dissertation research was to develop a synergetic merger of remote sensing with advancements in data mining techniques to address modeling and monitoring of UHI in space and in time. The effect of urban heat islands in space and over time was analyzed within this research using exploratory and quantitative models. Visualization techniques including animation were experimented with developing a mechanism to view and understand the UHI over a city. Association rule mining models were implemented to analyze the relationship between remote sensing images and geographic information system (GIS) data. This model was implemented using three different remote sensing images i.e., Advanced Space borne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER), Landsat and Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS). The effect of the spatial resolution on the model and the phenomenon were analyzed in detail to determine variables which strongly associate with land use land cover (LULC) in space and in time.A non-parametric process convolution model was developed and was used to characterize UHI from MODIS time series images. The resulting characterized images were used to study the relationship between LULC and UHI. The behavior of UHI including its movement and magnitude was analyzed in space and time.The intellectual merits of these methods are two-fold; first, they will be a forerunner in the development and implementation of association rule mining algorithm within remote sensing image analysis framework. Second, since most of the existing UHI models are parametric in nature; the non-parametric approach is expected to overcome the existing problems within characterization and analysis. Parametric models pose problems (in terms of efficiency, since the implementation of such models are time consuming and need human intervention) while analyzing UHI effect from multiple imageries. These proposed models are expected to aid in effective spatial characterization and facilitate in temporal analysis and monitoring of UHI phenomenon.
    • Applying Geophysics and Geochemistry to Understand Middle Woodland Site Spatial Organization At the Northwood Site, Vigo County, Indiana

      Grossman, Tiffany (2012-10-22)
      The Northwood site (12Vi194) in northern Vigo County is attributed to the Late Middle Woodland culture known as Allison-LaMotte. Previous studies at other Allison-LaMotte sites are inconclusive regarding the village structure of this culture. While some studies identify a habitation zone surrounding a circular plaza, other Allison-LaMotte sites lack an observable spatial layout to the site. Magnetometry studies completed at the Northwood site in 2005 reveal a possible semi-circular community pattern with a central plaza. This study employed the 2005 magnetometer survey data, magnetic susceptibility, ground penetrating radar (GPR), and geochemical analyses to confirm the hypothesized site organization. Magnetic data from the magnetometer survey and magnetic susceptibility of artifact classes were compared to identify sources of magnetic anomalies. The map produced by magnetometry was compared with the GPR map to identify overlaps in possible pit features and the plaza zone. Excavating in locations identified as magnetic anomalies allowed for ground truthing survey results and collecting magnetic susceptibility measurements and soil samples for geochemical analysis. Geochemical analyses included detailed phosphorus geochemistry, total organic matter content, and organic carbon enhancement of soils collected from the site. Finally, determination of the source and strength of feature magnetic signals were analyzed using magnetic susceptibility and magnetometer data. These investigations provide better estimates of site spatial structure at the Northwood Site.
    • Assessing Environmental Conditions at the Friar Tuck Mining Complex, Dugger, Indiana

      McBride, Windy Jo (2011-09-20)
      Many abandoned mine lands (AML) continue to present significant environmental concerns. The abandoned Friar Tuck Mining Complex in Greene and Sullivan counties, Indiana, continues to impair local water quality despite closing in 1952 for operations and multiple remediation attempts. Most areas within the Friar Tuck Mining Complex have been successfully remediated; however, the area of research interest requires additional treatment and continues to be impacted by runoff from gob piles. Subsequently, areas characterized by a loss of vegetation where mine seeps occur behave unpredictably and are characterized by the exposure of bare soil. These mine seep areas are of particular concern because contaminated soil may leave the site during summer months as aerosols due to soil desiccation. The primary goal of this project was to evaluate spatial variability in the distribution of metals in surface soils. In May 2010, 258 soil samples were collected at the Friar Tuck Mining Complex to evaluate metal accumulation and bioavailability using several different geochemical techniques, including bulk geochemistry following reaction with water and acid and a sequential extraction technique. Results indicate that surface soils at the Friar Tuck Mining Complex continue to be degraded, pH is moderately to highly acid (pH=4-1) in areas of mine seeps, surface flow, and where the slurry pond narrows and begins to discharge into Mud creek. Surface soils also have elevated concentrations of bioavailable metals due to the persistent influence of AMD, such as Zn, Cu, Cr and Pb, especially in areas of mine seeps, surface flow, and water ponding.
    • Assessment and Impact of Gentrified Public Housing Neighborhoods in The United States: A Case Study of Chicago

      Sink, Todd W. (2011-09-20)
      Social-mix housing policies play a unique role in shaping the geography of gentrification in cities throughout the U.S. and Europe. The HOPE VI program in the U.S. is one popular example. Since its inception in 1992, HOPE VI has simultaneously displaced thousands of urban poor from their homes and neighborhoods, reduced their housing opportunities, and created and encouraged housing development for a more affluent population. Yet over the years, very few empirical studies have emerged that examine the place-based outcomes of HOPE VI within the context of gentrification. As such, important empirical questions remain unanswered. This study focuses on the geography of HOPE VI policy and gentrification in Chicago. The purpose of the study is to examine when, in what way, and to what magnitude the gentrification process has unfolded in public housing neighborhoods targeted by the HOPE VI program during the period 1990-2007. Socio-economic data from the U.S. Census and Geolytics; mortgage financing data from the FFIEC; building permits from the City of Chicago; and field surveys are utilized to create an assessment of gentrification. The findings show that the relationship between HOPE VI and gentrification is different in different areas of Chicago. HOPE VI is driving the gentrification process directly in some areas and indirectly in others. HOPE VI is the foundation that has made gentrification possible in public housing neighborhoods in Chicago. But HOPE VI is not the only driving force, as some areas have experienced gentrification even though they have not been cited for new housing and commercial development under HOPE VI. Latent market demand, incredibly profitable rent-gaps, excellent locations near shopping districts, and weakening insecurities among mortgage lenders are also solid forces working to expand the gentrification frontier in public housing neighborhoods.
    • Classification of Urban features using Airborne Hyperspectral Data

      Babu, Bharath Ganesh (2010-05-11)
      Accurate mapping and modeling of urban environments are critical for their efficient and successful management. Superior understanding of complex urban environments is made possible by using modern geospatial technologies. This research focuses on thematic classification of urban land use and land cover (LULC) using 248 bands of 2.0 meter resolution hyperspectral data acquired from an airborne imaging spectrometer (AISA+) on 24th July 2006 in and near Terre Haute, Indiana. Three distinct study areas including two commercial classes, two residential classes, and two urban parks/recreational classes were selected for classification and analysis. Four commonly used classification methods – maximum likelihood (ML), extraction and classification of homogeneous objects (ECHO), spectral angle mapper (SAM), and iterative self organizing data analysis (ISODATA) - were applied to each data set. Accuracy assessment was conducted and overall accuracies were compared between the twenty four resulting thematic maps. With the exception of SAM and ISODATA in a complex commercial area, all methods employed classified the designated urban features with more than 80% accuracy. The thematic classification from ECHO showed the best agreement with ground reference samples. The residential area with relatively homogeneous composition was classified consistently with highest accuracy by all four of the classification methods used. The average accuracy amongst the classifiers was 93.60% for this area. When individually observed, the complex recreational area (Deming Park) was classified with the highest accuracy by ECHO, with an accuracy of 96.80% and 96.10% Kappa. The average accuracy amongst all the classifiers was 92.07%. The commercial area with relatively high complexity was classified with the least accuracy by all classifiers. The lowest accuracy was achieved by SAM at 63.90% with 59.20% Kappa. This was also the lowest accuracy in the entire analysis. This study demonstrates the potential for using the visible and near infrared (VNIR) bands from AISA+ hyperspectral data in urban LULC classification. Based on their performance, the need for further research using ECHO and SAM is underscored. The importance incorporating imaging spectrometer data in high resolution urban feature mapping is emphasized.
    • Comparisons of Distributions and Isotopic Geochemistry of Benthic Foraminifera from Seep and Non-seep Environments, Offshore of Costa Rica

      Burkett, Ashley M. (2011-06-17)
      Vertical distribution patterns and stable isotopic geochemistry of benthic foraminifera labeled with CellTracker Green and stained with Rose Bengal were compared at sites of active methane seepage and adjacent non-seep habitats off the Pacific coast of Costa Rica. Sediment cores of bacterial mats from Costa Rica revealed vertical distribution patterns more similar to those seen previously in clam beds, suggesting increased levels of bioturbation compared to nonseep sites. Similar taxa were found at both seep and non-seep sites including: Chilostomella oolina, Uvigerina peregrina and hispida, Cibicides mckannai, and Cassidulina braziliensis. Within active methane seep habitats, elevated substrate such as carbonate rocks, and vestimentiferan tubeworms were examined for living foraminifera. Vestimentiferan tubeworms had highly variable numbers of attached epibenthic foraminifera, dominated by Cibicides wuellerstorfi and Carpenteria monticularis. Stable carbon isotopic comparisons between epibenthic foraminiferal species of Cibicides wuellerstorfi and the vestimentiferan tubeworms on which they reside revealed 10‰ to 30‰ differences between the foraminiferal carbonate and substrate, suggesting that the geochemical signatures of elevated epibenthics were not significantly influenced by the geochemical signature of the substrate on which they reside. This study finds no apparent methane influence on the foraminiferal calcite of elevated epibenthic foraminifera from the three active seep sites studied (Mound 11, Mound 12, and Jaco Scar). This may be because the elevated epibenthics were not exposed to seep-influenced fluids by inhabiting raised substrates. This study also provides a quantitative analysis of coiling directions in elevated epibenthic species at seeps, which has never previously been reported. Statistical analysis revealed that there were no significant differences in isotopic composition between sinstral (left)and dextral (right) coiling Cibicides wuellerstorfi. The results of this study suggest that coiling direction of elevated epibenthic oraminifera, such as Cibicides wuellerstorfi and Carpenteriamonticularis, is a result of biologic factors rather than environmental influences.
    • Dendroclimatic Reconstruction from Bald Cypress in Southwestern Indiana

      Van De Veer, Robin Lyn (2011-09-20)
      In the United States, bald cypress (Taxodium distichum) is generally recognized as an important component of the forested wetlands found in the Southwestern Coastal Plain and the Mississippi River Valley (which extends to the southern Midwest). The lifespan of this deciduous species is important not only commercially, but also in an ecological capacity. This study focuses mainly upon the role the tree plays in its environment and how it can be used as an indicator of climate through drought/flood signals in the rings. Bald cypress is a long-lived tree that can be over 1000 years old and is sensitive to climate and ground water hydrology. Because of these factors it is a favorable choice for dendrochronological study in the region. According to the International Tree-Ring Database, a chronology of the species is not well defined for southwestern Indiana. This research provides this missing information and creates the northern most bald cypress chronology in the Midwest. The study site is located in the extreme southwest of Indiana around Hovey Lake (a backwater lake of the Ohio River) about 10 miles south of Mount Vernon, Indiana. Samples were taken from trees near the shore, both on land and in the water.This study dated some trees to 1855. Analysis of the tree rings, climate data, and river discharge data revealed that bald cypress are not declining in southwestern Indiana. The rate of tree ring growth increases as PDSI does and the rate of river discharge does not seem to affect growth much at all. Even though this is the northernmost bald cypress chronology in the midwest and therefore should be stressed according to the theory of ecological amplitude, this chronology does not fall in the category with the highest series intercorrelation or mean sensitivity. The construction of the dam in 1975 has overwhelmed the climate signal in these trees and the trees continue to be suppressed due to the current water level.
    • Environmental Conditions of Green Valley Lake

      Bellamy, Jennifer (2011-03-16)
      Green Valley Lake, western Indiana, has experienced periodic inputs of acid mine drainage (AMD) from the abandoned Green Valley Coal Mine. The lake serves as a state fishing area, and AMD inputs may affect the aquatic ecosystem and human health. The purpose of this research is to determine to what extent the sediments in Green Valley Lake are acting as sinks for metals and if they may impact water quality. Water and bottom sediment samples were taken throughout the lake to evaluate spatial variability of contamination and to determine how the metal concentrations compared to Post Archean Average Shale (PAAS) background values and sediment quality guidelines (SQGs) values. Three cores were taken from the Northwest portion of the lake, where AMD enters via surface flow to evaluate temporal changes in contamination. Results indicate that water quality at Green Valley is acceptable, pH is slightly acidic (pH=6.4) near the locations of AMD input and increases to the east (pH=8.30). The northwest portion of Green Valley Lake is an eutrophic lake, based on its nutrient levels and Secchi disk measurements. Organic matter content, based on LOI, is higher in the older portion of the lake (7-33 wt %) due to the influence of vegetation surrounding the lake. Bottom sediment at Green Valley Lake are acting as a sink for metals and nutrients. Ni and Cd concentrations are above the sediment quality guidelines severe effect level, while Zn and Pb were above the probable effect level. Metals over the severe and probably effect levels should continue to be monitored in the sediments at Green Valley Lake to ensure that organisms are not being impacted.
    • Glacial/Interglacial Export Production in the Subantarctic South Pacific

      Adamic, Jessica (2010-07-22)
      Atmospheric CO2 varied considerably in the past; however, the mechanisms that drive this variability are poorly understood. CO2 is linked to marine primary productivity through the biological carbon pump (BCP), leading to hypotheses that past increases in BCP efficiency in areas such as the Southern Ocean may have contributed to glacial CO2 drawdown (Sarmiento & Toggweiler, 1984). Productivity has varied considerably in the past, but the extent, timing, and impacts remain poorly understood. The Subantarctic South Pacific is an area of the ocean that is crucial to the understanding of both glacial climate and paleo-export productivity. Unfortunately, few studies have investigated the central South Pacific because it is so remote. The sediment core MV0502-04JC was recovered from the Subantarctic South Pacific in February-March 2005 at 50°S. The results of this study will be compared with data from ODP Leg 189, Site 1171, also in the Subantarctic South Pacific. Data from these cores will be used to evaluate glacial/interglacial paleo-export production and terrigenous provenance using bulk sediment geochemical proxies, including detailed P geochemistry, P, Ba, and metal elemental ratios, and Baxs. The results of this research suggest each site has variable terrigenous provenance that may have relatively different Fe content. Export production at MV0502-4JC is invariant down core; however, Site 1171 does exhibit glacial/interglacial variations in export production.
    • Holocene Landscape Evolution of the Ohio River Valley from Knob Creek to Rosewood Bottom

      De Rego, Kathryn G. (2012-10-19)
      Rivers and floodplain environments have provided human settlements with resources for thousands of years. By understanding how rivers shape the land around them, we can use landforms to reconstruct ancient fluvial processes and to examine how they have conditioned the way humans interact with their environment. This study investigates the Lower Ohio River during the Holocene. During this period, Midwestern landscapes were adjusting to a variety of processes, including millennial-scale climate change involving the transition from a glacial to an interglacial environment. At the same time, Archaic hunter-gatherers adopted a settlement strategy that favored large river valleys. The cause of this shift has not been resolved. This study examined floodplain sedimentation and change along the Lower Ohio from Knob Creek to Rosewood Bottom through two different scales of analysis: the regional (geologic) scale and within local bottoms. A model of floodplain structure from Madison to Tell City, Indiana was created using a GIS and used to examine differences between geologic regions and Early and Late Holocene sediment. Swales were identified using a DEM, and depth, area, and perimeter-area ratio were used as proxies of their characteristics, which are correlated with backwater environments. Subsurface soil and sediment data were collected from a transect across Rosewood Bottom and within a paleochannel common to the study reach and used to reconstruct floodplain production within an individual bottom. Radiocarbon dates from geologic and archaeological contexts were used to examine Early and Late Holocene sedimentation rates. The Ohio River was active during the Early Holocene. It migrated rapidly and constructed most of the modern floodplain. In some areas, it was anabranching because resistant Pleistocene braid bars formed obstructions to flow that became islands. During the Late Holocene, deposition has been mainly characterized by overbank backwater/slackwater deposition in swales. There is not enough evidence to assign an exogenic cause to this phenomenon. Significant differences in floodplain structure between individual bottoms and regions, the influence of underlying Pleistocene gravels on river migration, and different dates for paleochannel abandonment are indicators of autogenic controls on the Ohio’s behavior and show that bottoms have independent histories. This study complements current models of environmental change for river basins in the Midwest, but it suggests that the stability of the floodplain be given more consideration when analyzing Archaic settlement strategy.
    • Multi-Timescale Dynamics of Land Surface Temperature

      Fu, Peng (2015-01-07)
      Spatial and temporal patterns of land surface temperature (LST) have been used in studies of surface energy balance, landscape thermal patterns and water management. An effective way to investigate the landscape thermal dynamics is to utilize the Landsat legacy and consistent records of the thermal state of earth’s surface since 1982. However, only a small proportion of studies emphasize the importance of historical Landsat TIR data for investigating the relationship between the urbanization process and surface thermal properties. This occurred due to the lack of standardized LST product from Landsat and the unevenly distributed remote sensing datasets caused by poor atmospheric effects and/or clouds. Despite the characterization of annual temperature cycles using remote sensing data in previous studies, yet the statistical evidence to confirm the existence of the annual temperature cycle is still lacking. The objectives of the research are to provide statistical evidence for the existence of the annual temperature cycle and to develop decomposition technique to explore the impact of urbanization on surface thermal property changes. The study area is located in Los Angeles County, the corresponding remotely sensed TIR data from Landsat TM over a decadal year (2000-2010) was selected, and eventually a series of 82 cloud-free images were acquired for the computation of LST. The hypothesis technique, Lomb-Scargle periodogram analysis was proposed to confirm whether decadal years’s LSTs showed the annual temperature cycle. Furthermore, the simulated LSTs comprised of seasonality, trend, and noise components are generated to test the robustness of the decomposition scheme. The periodogram analysis revealed that the annual temperature cycle was confirmed statistically with p-value less than 0.01 and the identified periodic time at 362 days. The sensitivity analysis based on the simulated LSTs suggested that the decomposition technique was very robustness and able to retrieve the seasonality and trend components with errors up to 0.6 K. The application of the decomposition technique into the real 82 remote sensing data decomposed the original LSTs into seasonality, trend, and noise components. Estimated seasonality component by land cover showed an agreement with previous studies in Weng & Fu (2014). The derived trend component revealed that the impact of urbanization on land surface temperature ranged from 0.2 K to 0.8 K based on the comparison between urban and non-urban land covers. Further applications of the proposed Lomb-Scargle technique and the developed decomposition technique can also be directed to data from other satellite sensors.
    • Neural Network Classification of Hyperspectral Imagery for Urban Environments: a Case Study

      Lulla, Vijay (2010-09-22)
      Urban environments are complex because many different artificial and natural objects occur in close proximity. Being able to understand the processes and workings of these environments requires the ability to observe and record data with high spatial and spectral resolution. Hyperspectral sensors have been gaining popularity for this task as they are becoming more affordable. In this research, a commonly used maximum likelihood (ML) classifier and artificial neural network (ANN) classifier have been compared for classifying urban land use and land cover (LULC) using AISA+ hyperspectral data. Further, the best set of bands were identified for classification of urban areas for use in ANN classification. Optimum bands based on a spectral separability measure were used with a neural network classifier to compare its performance with maximum likelihood classifier. It was found that both the classifiers had an overall classification accuracy of more than 80% and the neural network classifier with optimum band selection performed better in all of the study sites.
    • Place Construction, Identity, and Capital Investment: An investigation of two tourist landscapes in Michigan

      Stawarski, Andrew (2011-07-20)
      Tourist communities exist all over the world. They are areas that are focused on tourism and are often tailored to resemble specific regions or themes to better achieve capital gain. In this study, two cities in Michigan are examined to better understand how the cultural landscapes are experienced and what practices are employed throughout the landscape. Specifically, this thesis investigates the spatial practices that are involved in re-creating and re-presenting ―themed‖ landscapes. Another question analyzed is whether the ―themed‖ landscapes reflect the resident‘s daily lives and/or their histories. This thesis examines the two Michigan cities of Gaylord and Frankenmuth, re-presenting and re-creating Alpenfest and Frankenmuth, respectively, and their emphasis on tourism within their respective communities. To better understand the cultural environment and themed landscapes, digital images are used throughout this thesis of both cities. The data for these themed landscapes were geocoded and analyzed. Also, photographs of both cities were used to demonstrate that only modifications to the façade and additions to the structures were merely aesthetic in nature, and are not realistic but stereotypes of the regions they were representing.
    • Place names of Parke County, Indiana

      Seits, Laurence (2014-08-12)
      Not Available
    • Remote Sensing of Tanzanian Volcano Oldoinyo Lengai: Verifying Detection Methods of Flow Activity

      Frystak, Scott Richard (2013-01-30)
      Every day volcanoes erupt with varying magnitudes across the globe, and remote sensing used to keep track of volcanic activity would be a useful application. One promising use of remote sensing to understand volcanoes at a distance is to distinguish gaseous or lava flow activity. Current methods for differentiating volcanic activity with remote sensing have only been applied at Mt. Etna, and research is still needed to verify that the detection of gaseous or lava flow activity is possible at volcanoes with different compositions. The subject of this study, the Oldoinyo Lengai volcano, is a natrocarbonatite stratovolcano with drastically different chemical composition from Mt. Etna. These composition differences allow for the verification of gaseous or lava flow activity remotely over time. Furthermore, looking closely at how volcano composition affects detection will allow us to understand the variables required to detect gaseous or lava flow activity. The results of the research are inconclusive, but provide useful information for this application of remote sensing. For Oldoinyo Lengai, the Landsat TM data were unable to resolve lava flows or degassing activity, due to a combination of the volcano’s small size, the lack of lava flows, and/or pixel saturation. Superior sensors such as hyperspectral sensors are needed to adequately perform the analysis, and would likely result in the capability to differentiate volcanic activity. Further applicability of the study is prudent due to the varying nature of volcanoes and sensors. Gathering additional detailed information should be at the forefront of volcanic monitoring research.
    • Spatial decision support system for abandoned coal mine reclamation.

      Liu, Qian (2012-05-16)
      Abandoned coal mines and mining activities typically cause severe environmental problems related to erosion and pollutant transportation.Because of the lack of data integration,traditional methods and procedures of reclamation plan design must go through a time-consuming process.As new technologies from a variety of fields have been revolutionizing the way in which planning is conducted,it is practical to find a more efficient approach to deal with complex reclamation planning.In this research,a Geographic Information System(GIS),remotely sensed data,erosion modeling,and Multi-Criteria Decision Making(MCDM)methods were integrated to implement a Spatial Decision Support System(SDSS)for better reclamation planning.The newly developed Open Development Environment(ODE)and GIS componentware technology were adopted to provide GIS functions and to build the interface.The system was designed to facilitate the prioritizing of specific areas for reclamation within a region of abandoned coal mines.
    • The Locational Determinants of Internet Usage in Asia and Nepal

      Chand, Smriti (2011-06-17)
      This study examines the relationship between internet development and various socio- economic factors that are assumed to affect internet infrastructure development decision. The data collected for 35 Asian countries is secondary data collected from various sources. This study tests six hypotheses about the impact of various socio-economic factors and economic freedom indicators on Internet Penetration Rate (IPR) and Internet Service Providers (ISP). The findings show that the IPR can be statistically explained by one independent variable: GDP (Gross Domestic Product). The study models also include Purchasing Power Parity (PPP), literacy rate, fertility rate, the percentage of urban population, the country's status as a former European Colony, Business Freedom, Freedom from Corruption, and Property Rights.
    • …To TOC A Dendrochronological Analysis of Insect Outbreaks and Climate Effects on Tamarack from Indiana and Michigan

      Flinner, Nicholas Lorin (2015-01-07)
      Disturbances have a strong impact on tree stand dynamics across the world. In North America, the larch sawfly (Pristiphora erichsonii) and larch casebearer (Cleophora laricella) are two non-native species of insects affecting tamarack across much of their native range. The majority of research on the effects of larch sawfly on tamarack (Larix laricina) has been conducted in Canada with very little dendrochronological work in the United States along the geographical boundary of tamarack or on the effects of larch casebearer on radial growth. As a consequence, very little is known about the relationship between tamarack and these insects’ outbreaks in the United States. The traditional model of Ecological Amplitude in biogeography explains that species are limited along their southern border by species interaction, so it is very important to start to understand the relationship between predator and prey. At the Pigeon River State Fish and Wildlife Area in northern Indiana, tamarack are stressed and dying out on the landscape and local naturalists believe insect outbreaks are a potential factor. I use the traditional dendrochronological methods to develop and compare host and non-host chronologies from northern Indiana and central Michigan. I then compared these chronologies to each other, local climate variables, and insect outbreak information to better understand climate and outbreak signals in radial growth. I found that tamarack in Indiana showed a stronger negative response to temperature in Indiana than in Michigan which indicates warmer temperature play a role in limiting the southern margin of the species’ range. Tamarack also provided a good record of local insect outbreak events. Using outbreak information collected from local naturalists, I developed a tree ring outbreak signature for larch casebearer. Continued work along the southern boundary of the species will determine the combined impacts of multiple species specific predators as climate changes.
    • Tree-Ring Analysis of Outbreak Dynamics across an Insect’s Entire Range: The Pandora Moth System

      de Graauw, Kristen (2012-10-22)
      In montane forests of the western United States, pandora moth (Coloradia pandora Blake) defoliates local pines, primarily ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa Dougl. Ex Laws.) and Jeffrey pine (Pinus jeffreyi Grev. & Balf.). This defoliation stresses the tree, leaving a distinct outbreak signature in the tree-rings. The occurrence of pandora moth outbreaks has been recorded in ponderosa pine tree rings in Oregon as far back as 1500 years, however little is known of the outbreak history throughout the rest of the pandora moth range. To gain a better understanding of the spatiotemporal dynamics of pandora moth I have reconstructed outbreaks across the entire range of the insect using 121 tree-ring chronologies from the International Tree-Ring Databank (ITRDB) and 19 chronologies from sites sampled for this study using dendrochronological techniques. I then created a fine resolution habitat model for pandora moth and a gridded tree-ring network of non-host chronologies, which was used to validate statistically confirmed outbreak events across the entire range of the insect. Sites with confirmed outbreaks were then tested against the habitat model for accuracy of model parameters. ArcMap 10 was used to create an animated map of the spatial and temporal distribution of pandora moth across its range. One of my most notable findings is the record of outbreak events further north than previously documented, and the agreement between those northern sites with my habitat model. In my research I have demonstrated the use of dendrochronology to study outbreaks across an insect’s range. The methods I have used here can be applied to other range-wide analyses.