Long term records provide insights on the relative influence of climate and forest community structure on water yield in the southern Appalachians

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Abstract

In forested watersheds, changes in climate and forest structure or age can affect water yield; yet few long-term observational records from such watersheds exist that allow an assessment of these impacts over time. In this study, we used long-term (~80 yrs) observational records of climate and water yield in six reference watersheds at the Coweeta Hydrologic Laboratory in the southern Appalachian mountains of North Carolina to determine whether water yield has changed over time, and examine and attribute the causal mechanisms of change.

  • Citation: Caldwell, Peter; Miniat, Chelcy Ford; Brantley, Steven; Elliott, Katherine; Laseter, Stephanie; Swank, Wayne 2016. Long term records provide insights on the relative influence of climate and forest community structure on water yield in the southern Appalachians. In: Stringer, Christina E.; Krauss, Ken W.; Latimer, James S., eds. 2016. Headwaters to estuaries: advances in watershed science and management -Proceedings of the Fifth Interagency Conference on Research in the Watersheds. March 2-5, 2015, North Charleston, South Carolina. e-General Technical  Report  SRS-211. Asheville, NC: U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service, Southern Research Station. 1 p.

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