Familiar eastern trees which range into the tropics

General discussions of forests and trees that do not focus on a specific species or specific location.

Moderators: edfrank, dbhguru

User avatar
mikekowalski
Posts: 32
Joined: Sun Mar 14, 2010 9:32 am

Re: Familiar eastern trees which range into the tropics

Post by mikekowalski » Sun Jan 01, 2012 6:14 pm

I've always been fascinated by Quercus macrocapra: http://esp.cr.usgs.gov/data/atlas/little/quermacr.pdf

I'm from an area around the extreme northern limit of the species in New Brunswick - the lower St. John river valley, on the shores of the largest lake in the province. There's some space between the small area where it's present in New Brunswick and the closest region in Maine. I believe the relatively warm microclimate of the lower river valley presents the conditions it needs. I love finding them in unexpected places in the northern parts of the Grand Lake watershed.

It would be cool to see some as far south as Texas!
Mike

User avatar
DougBidlack
Posts: 425
Joined: Sun Mar 14, 2010 4:14 pm

Re: Familiar eastern trees which range into the tropics

Post by DougBidlack » Sun Jan 01, 2012 11:19 pm

Mike,

I was in Texas in November of 2010 collecting acorns from bur oaks with my wife. Here are some pictures for you.

The first five pictures are all from a campground at the southeastern end of Benbrook Lake which lies just to the southwest of Fort Worth.
Some leaves and acorns.
TX Bur1.jpg
An average sized tree in the campground.
TX Bur2.jpg
More leaves of a different tree. Quite attractive foliage.
TX Bur3.jpg
Yet more leaves of another tree. I just love how different the leaves of each individual look!
TX Bur4.jpg
This was probably the nicest tree at this campground. The bur oak is the largest, leaning tree on the left of the picture.
TX Bur5.jpg
The current Texas champion bur oak based on AF points is located in a park just to the northeast of Benbrook Lake. It was measured in 2006 at 218" in girth x 81' in height x 105' in average crown spread for 325 points. I think we found this tree and my quick measurements were 18.70' (224.4") in girth x 73.5' in height (shooting straight up) x 87' in crown spread for 320 points. The height is probably a bit taller and I think I only made a single measurement of crown spread so this measurement is very inadequate...however I do not buy the 105' average crown spread.

The following four pictures are of this very nice bur oak. The first is a close-up with my wife, Ellen.
TX Bur6.jpg
TX Bur7.jpg
TX Bur8.jpg
TX Bur9.jpg
The last picture that I have is from Mother Neff State Park that is southwest of Waco and northeast of Fort Hood. There are two nice-sized bur oaks in this picture.
TX Bur10.jpg
Hope you enjoy the pictures!

Doug

User avatar
KoutaR
Posts: 667
Joined: Tue Mar 16, 2010 3:41 am

Re: Familiar eastern trees which range into the tropics

Post by KoutaR » Mon Jan 02, 2012 11:29 am

a big chunk of the Eastern broadleaf ecosystem spent the last ice age camped out in the mountains of mexico?
Rand & Steve,

I am currently reading "A Natural History of the New World" by Alan Graham, and have just learned that the scenario you proposed is actually an old belief, and according to the present knowledge, most of those genera/species were already established in eastern Mexico by at least the middle Pliocene (~ 5 Ma) and their principal introduction was probably around the middle Miocene (>10 Ma) with a major temperature decline. I am not sure about this, but I have understood the dry zone of south Texas & north Mexico was a barrier in the ice age, too.

The refugia for the temperate flora of the eastern US have been within the southeastern US (like the coastal plain, Ozark and Edwards Plateaus).

Somebody may wonder why a European reads natural history of the NEW World. Well, I got the book from a friend of mine, who found it boring. I find it fascinating! How was the Cretaceous "paratropical rain forest" of the southwest US... What about the "polar broad-leaved deciduous forest" of the same period, with genera like Cercidiphyllum, Metasequoia and Ginkgo.

Kouta

User avatar
Chris
Posts: 289
Joined: Tue Feb 01, 2011 7:52 pm

Re: Familiar eastern trees which range into the tropics

Post by Chris » Mon Jan 02, 2012 6:05 pm

mikekowalski wrote:I've always been fascinated by Quercus macrocapra: http://esp.cr.usgs.gov/data/atlas/little/quermacr.pdf

I'm from an area around the extreme northern limit of the species in New Brunswick - the lower St. John river valley, on the shores of the largest lake in the province. There's some space between the small area where it's present in New Brunswick and the closest region in Maine. I believe the relatively warm microclimate of the lower river valley presents the conditions it needs. I love finding them in unexpected places in the northern parts of the Grand Lake watershed.
I don't know. It grows into Manitoba and Saskatchewan which would have much colder low winter temps. Perhaps some combination with soil texture along that floodplain.

Northeastern Naturalist 16(1):85-100. 2009
doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1656/045.016.0107
Past and Present Distribution of New Brunswick Bur Oak Populations: A Case for Conservation
Donnie A. McPhee1,* and Jude A. Loo1
1Natural Resources Canada, Canadian Forest Service - Atlantic Forestry Centre, PO Box 4000, Fredericton, NB, Canada.
*Corresponding author - dmcphee@nrcan.gc.ca.

According to the abstract of a paper [sadly, I can't find a free copy online... anyone with free access willing to take a read?]
A survey was conducted in New Brunswick (NB) over 5 years (1996–2000), to assess the status of Quercus macrocarpa (Bur Oak). Bur Oak in NB is separated from the fringe of its contiguous native range by approximately 750 km. Historically, the species occurred throughout the lower Saint John River Valley and in the floodplains of the Grand Lake Complex. The range in NB has been reduced and fragmented, and now consists of a few small populations, along with scattered individuals, occupying a combined area of less than 5 km2. The most isolated of the small populations in NB is at least 40 km from the nearest seed or pollen source. Elements of a conservation strategy are presented, which include preservation of existing stands by government and non-government organizations, landowner education, and restoration planting in appropriate habitats.
**Off topic** but I saw you are from Moncton. I was in the area in September and hear about someone cutting down a lot of trees at a heritage site on Labo(u)r Day Weekend and got some people upset? Do you what ever ended up occuring?

.

User avatar
Rand
Posts: 1217
Joined: Tue Mar 16, 2010 9:25 pm

Re: Familiar eastern trees which range into the tropics

Post by Rand » Wed Jan 04, 2012 2:55 pm

Thanks Kouta. I guess this is another example where plausible speculation is no susbstitute for proof.

User avatar
mikekowalski
Posts: 32
Joined: Sun Mar 14, 2010 9:32 am

Re: Familiar eastern trees which range into the tropics

Post by mikekowalski » Thu Jan 05, 2012 11:34 am

Doug,

Thanks. Great pictures! That large one is impressive.

To me, the Bur has a unique morphology that really pops out of the background foliage of the New Brunswick forest, making it relatively easy to identify. Our only other oak is the Red.
I have to wonder what it would be like trying to identify one in the species rich southern forests.
Mike

User avatar
mikekowalski
Posts: 32
Joined: Sun Mar 14, 2010 9:32 am

Re: Familiar eastern trees which range into the tropics

Post by mikekowalski » Thu Jan 05, 2012 11:37 am

Chris,

Thanks for the article. I'll check it out.
Mike

User avatar
mikekowalski
Posts: 32
Joined: Sun Mar 14, 2010 9:32 am

Re: Familiar eastern trees which range into the tropics

Post by mikekowalski » Thu Jan 05, 2012 11:50 am

I just thought of another species that, interestingly, has almost the same confined range distribution in the lower St. John river valley: Juglans cinerea.

http://esp.cr.usgs.gov/data/atlas/little/juglcine.pdf

It's truely wonderful to come across a small stand of butternuts along the floodplain. They're so precious here. They're also usually found in close association with a favorite wild edible of the region: fiddleheads.
Mike

User avatar
Neil
Posts: 143
Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2010 2:17 pm

Re: Familiar eastern trees which range into the tropics

Post by Neil » Wed Jan 11, 2012 9:00 am

Kouta Räsänen wrote:
a big chunk of the Eastern broadleaf ecosystem spent the last ice age camped out in the mountains of mexico?
The refugia for the temperate flora of the eastern US have been within the southeastern US (like the coastal plain, Ozark and Edwards Plateaus).
thank you Kouta,

another potential refugia for eastern US trees is the outer Coastal Plain that is currently under the Atlantic. I have not dug into the lit, but the speed at which some species came back to the northeast after the last deglaciation makes some people think some of these species were huddled off the shores of New Jersey, for example, on the part of the continental shelf that was above sea level during full glaciation. I think there is only some scattered evidence of this. It makes some sense. While the ocean was cooler off the paleo Atlantic seacoast, it could have moderated climate to provide some refugia.

neil

User avatar
tsharp
Posts: 416
Joined: Mon Mar 15, 2010 12:04 pm

Re: Familiar eastern trees which range into the tropics

Post by tsharp » Wed Jan 11, 2012 12:16 pm

Neil, Kouta,NTS: Neil wrote:
[quote]...some people think some of these species were huddled off the shores of New Jersey, for example, on the part of the continental shelf that was above sea level during full glaciation. I think there is only some scattered evidence of this. [/quote]
Could this be some of the "scattered" evidence to which you are referring?
[quote]Red pine may also have survived during the glacial period in refugia off the present coastline of the eastern seaboard in nonglaciated islands and extensions of the mainland. [/quote]
This quote was from: After the Ice Age: the return of life to glaciated North America. Pielou E. C. 1991,University of Chicago Press, Chicago, Illinois, USA.
Neil if you find time to find some more literature on this subject I am sure many on this board would be interested.
Turner Sharp

Post Reply

Return to “General Discussions”