Climate Change and the Temperate-Boreal Forest Biome Boundary

The "Lake States" of Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Michigan have millions of acres of transitional forests where boreal spruce and fir and temperate maple, basswood and oaks grow together. As the climate warms, temperate tree species are expected to invade the boreal forests. However, deer, earthworm invasion, and other factors are modifying the expected response, creating a complex mosaic of change across the landscape. 

Selected publications:

Frelich, L.E., R.A. Montgomery and P.B. Reich. 2021. Seven ways a warming climate can kill the southern boreal forest. Forests 12: 560. DOI: 10.3990/f12050560.

Toot, Ryan, L.E. Frelich, E. Butler and P.B. Reich. 2020. Climate-biome envelope shifts create enormous challenges and novel opportunities for conservation. Forests, 2020, 11, 1015, doi:10.3390/f11091015.

Fisichelli, N.A., L.E. Frelich, and P.B. Reich. 2014. Tree regeneration patterns across temperate-boreal ecotones mediated by temperature interactions (PDF). Ecography 37:152-161. [doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0587.2013.00197.x]

Fisichelli, N.A., L.E. Frelich and P.B. Reich. 2013. Climate and interrelated tree regeneration drivers in mixed temperate-boreal forests (PDF). Landscape Ecology 28:149-159. [doi:10.1007/s10980-012-9827-z]

Fisichelli, N.A., L.E. Frelich, and P.B. Reich. 2012. Sapling growth responses to warmer temperatures 'cooled' by browse pressure (PDF). Global Change Biology 18:3455-3463. [doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2486.2012.02785.x]

Frelich, L.E. 2013. Boreal Biome. In Oxford Bibliographies in Ecology, ed. David Gibson. New York: Oxford University Press.

Frelich, L.E., R.O. Peterson, M. Dovciak, P.B. Reich, J.A. Vucetich, and N. Eisenhauer. 2012. Trophic cascades, invasive species, and body-size hierarchies interactively modulate climate change responses of ecotonal temperate-boreal forest (PDF). Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society-B 367:2955-2961. [doi: 10.1098/rstb.2012.0235]