Review Questions, Second Exam, ESRM 473, 2012

Freshwater Tidal Wetlands

1.        Diefenderfer and Montgomery wrote a paper about tidal freshwater wetlands along the Columbia River.  What is the role of large wood in such systems?

2.       How do channels in freshwater tidal systems differ from other channels (non-tidal river channels)?

3.       What is “forced step pool” morphology in freshwater tidal systems?  What characterizes it?

4.       What are legacy logs?  Are they adequate to achieve restoration of freshwater tidal systems?

5.       What is the natural method of providing wood to freshwater tidal systems?

6.       Tanner et al wrote about the restoration of Spencer Island in the Snohomish River.  What was the method of restoration?

7.       Hood wrote about the importance of allometry in the restoration of tidal channels.  What is allometry?

8.       What was the problem with the allometry of the slough that was constructed on the Chehalis River directly across from Cosmopolis?

9.       What was the consequence of the incorrect allometry?


West Coast Dune Systems

10.   How far north and south are extensive dune systems found on the west coast?

11.   In this range , what are some common climate characteristics that contribute to dune formation and maintenance?

12.   What are some stresses and disturbances that dune plants have to contend with?

13.   What are some characteristics of morphology and growth that allow dune plants adapt to their unique environment?

14.   What is a foredune and what role does it play in the degradation of dune systems?

15.   Ammophila arenaria (European beach grass) was introduced in 1868.  What problems has it created, and how?

16.   How is  Ammophila generally removed?

17.   What is Ammophila usually replaced with?

18.   Restoration in dunes may be attempted on fresh sand (recently uncovered or blown in) or in areas where invasives have just been removed.  How would this determine the way that restoration is done?


19.   Whittaker  said that the high latitude systems are taiga, tundra, Arctic semidesert and Arctic desert.  What differentiates them?

20.   Why is the Arctic tough on plants?

21.   The potential for growth at different latitudes is sometimes measured in degree-days.  What is a degree day and how is it calculated?

22.   What adaptations do arctic plants have to living in areas that are cold, dry, and have short growing seasons?

23.   What is thermokarst?  Why does it occur?

24.   What are some impacts that extractive industries have on the Arctic ecosystems?

25.   Describe three restoration techniques that have been used in the Arctic.



26.   How do alpine environments differ from those in the Arctic?

27.   Billings hypothesized a gradient which he said was common to most alpine areas (see below).  How does this gradient impact plants and restoration?

Description: alpine_habitats


28.    How would you describe soil characteristics in an alpine site?

29.   In large alpine restoration projects such as strip mine reclamation, seeding is used because the areas are large.  What are some obstacles to restoration by planting seeds?

30.   In an alpine restoration site of smaller scale (trails, campsites)  what are common restoration steps?

Eastern Deciduous Forest

31.   Describe the eastern deciduous forest.

32.   What is it bounded by on the north and south?

33.   Why does it shift to a different ecosystem type at its northern boundary?

34.   Why does it shift to a different ecosystem type at its southern boundary?

35.   Why is deciduous forest the best adaptive choice for this ecosystem?

36.   In its natural, pre human impact state, what kind of disturbance interval was common in eastern deciduous forest?

37.   What trees characterize the drier, poorer soil parts of the eastern deciduous forest?

38.   What is the general climate of the region that is covered by eastern deciduous forest?

39.   How did fire get into this system?

40.   What is “chainsaw” restoration?

41.   Keddy and Drummond listed ten properties of a healthy eastern deciduous forest that could be used to set restoration goals.  What are they?


Longleaf Pine Ecosystem


42.   Describe the landform and climate of the longleaf pine system.

43.   Why does the longleaf pine system burn?

44.   What kind of soils does the longleaf system exist on?

45.   What are the threats to longleaf pine ecoystems in general?

46.   What is the normal fire return interval (prior to human settlement)?

47.   What is the adaptive value of the “grass” stage and subsequent growth of longleaf pine seedlings?

48.   How are degraded longleaf pine forests usually restored?

49.   What problems to longleaf pine forests are caused by the incursion of oaks?

50.   Why do longleaf pine ecosystems have such high biodiversity?


Southwestern Ponderosa Pine Ecosystem


51.   In the Merriam Life Zone concept, where are ponderosa pines located in Arizona (at what elevations)?

52.   What zones (forest types) are found above them and below them?

53.   What is the current anthropogenically initiated problem in this system?

54.   What has caused the changes that were initiated by human settlement and use of the landscape?

55.   What changes are occurring in the fires that have been recorded in Arizona ponderosa pine forest since 1948?

56.   Stand-scale restoration involves thinning the forest in a specific way.  What is the landscape-scale goal of this thinning?

57.   What is the response of overstory plants to thinning?

58.   What is the response of herbaceous species to thinning of the forest?

59.   There are four restoration treatments that are used to achieve the landscape level goal of a more open forest.  What are they?

60.   What are the wildlife responses to the restoration treatments?

61.   There has been resistance to the proposed restoration thinning.  What are some arguments that can be used to improve public awareness of the project?


Taiga/Boreal Forest


62.   What is taiga?  What is its global extent?

63.   What is the largest terrestrial biome?

64.   What ecosystem does taiga transition to at its northern boundary?  At its southern boundary?

65.   Is the taiga forest complex?  Explain.

66.   Describe taiga climate; relate this to the kind of forest that exists there.

67.   What kind of soils are found in taiga?  What causes them to be formed and what are their characteristics?  How do the soils impact the kind of vegetation that grows in taiga?

68.   Explain why fire is common in taiga.

69.   What are some adaptations to fire that are found in the dominant taiga tree species?

70.   What is the fire-return interval, and how does this support the high biodiversity  in the taiga ecosystem?

71.   A common prescription in forest restoration in the taiga and other systems involves physical manipulation of standing trees.  Describe and explain the purpose of five of the practices involved (sometimes referred to in class as “chainsaw restoration”.

72.   What impact will climate change have on the future extent of taiga in North America?


Madrean pine –oak woodlands

73.    What was the madro-tertiary flora, and what is its significance to the current distribution and form of vegetation in North America?

74.   In relation to ponderosa pine firests, where are Madrean pine-oak woodlands found? (You may use Merriam’s life zones to help answer this question.)

75.   Why is Mexico a landscape of high plant biodiversity?  Include a discussion of historical antecedents in your answer.

76.   What is a normal precipitation level for a station in the Madrean pine-oak woodlands?

77.   Why is this system described as semi-tropical?

78.   What is Encinal?

79.   What are Madrean sky islands, and where are they primarily found?

80.   What is one dominant oak and one dominant pine in this ecosystem?

81.   What is a normal fire-return interval in Madrean pine-oak woodlands?  Are fires generally crown or ground fires?

82.   What are some negative effects of intense fires on birds in Madrean pine-oak woodlands?  What are some positive effects?


Tropical Moist Forest


83.   What is a subtropical climate?

84.   What is a tropical climate?

85.   What are some characteristics of tropical soils?

86.   On what continent do the majority of tropical ecosystems exist?

87.   What happens when tropical forest is cleared?

88.   Restoration of cleared tropical forests is sometimes attempted by seeding.  What are some problems with seeding as a restoration method in the tropics?

89.   What are some impediments to natural regeneration of tropical moist forests?

90.   What are common seed predators in tropical moist forests?

91.   What limits seed germination and establishment in tropical moist forests?

92.   Why would you plant non-native species if you were trying to restore forests in the tropics?

93.   What are the pros and cons of constructing perches to encourage seed dispersal?


Tropical Dry Forest


94.   What is the annual rainfall on the dry side of the Big Island near Kona?

95.   What two grasses have invaded the Big Island from the dry side to the wet side?

96.   What damage do feral animals cause to Hawaiian vegetation?

97.   What fire adaptations do Hawaiian plants have?

98.   What benefits to lava flows confer on restoration on the dry side of the Big Island near Kona?

99.   In their germination stage, what problem do native plants have with shade?

100.                        What would an ideal microsite be like for a native plant on the dry side of the Big Island?