Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:
Appears in Collections:Biological and Environmental Sciences Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: Plant community responses to experimental warming across the tundra biome
Authors: Walker, Marilyn D
Wahren, C Henrik
Hollister, Robert D
Henry, Greg H R
Ahlquist, Lorraine E
Alatalo, Juha M
Bret-Harte, M Syndonia
Calef, Monika P
Callaghan, Terry V
Carroll, Amy B
Epstein, Howard E
Jonsdottir, Ingibjorg S
Klein, Julia A
Magnussonm, Borgbor
Molau, Ulf
Oberbauer, Steven F
Rewa, Steven P
Robinson, Clare H
Shaver, Gaius R
Suding, Katharine N
Thompson, Catharine C
Tolvanen, Anne
Totland, Orjan
Turner, P Lee
Tweedie, Craig E
Webber, Patrick J
Wookey, Philip
Contact Email:
Keywords: Arctic and alpine ecosystems
Climate change
Vegetation change
Issue Date: 31-Jan-2006
Publisher: US National Academy of Sciences
Citation: Walker MD, Wahren CH, Hollister RD, Henry GHR, Ahlquist LE, Alatalo JM, Bret-Harte MS, Calef MP, Callaghan TV, Carroll AB, Epstein HE, Jonsdottir IS, Klein JA, Magnussonm B, Molau U, Oberbauer SF, Rewa SP, Robinson CH, Shaver GR, Suding KN, Thompson CC, Tolvanen A, Totland O, Turner PL, Tweedie CE, Webber PJ & Wookey P (2006) Plant community responses to experimental warming across the tundra biome, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 103 (5), pp. 1342-1346.
Abstract: Recent observations of changes in some tundra ecosystems appear to be responses to a warming climate. Several experimental studies have shown that tundra plants and ecosystems can respond strongly to environmental change, including warming; however, most studies were limited to a single location and were of short duration and based on a variety of experimental designs. In addition, comparisons among studies are difficult because a variety of techniques have been used to achieve experimental warming and different measurements have been used to assess responses. We used metaanalysis on plant community measurements from standardized warming experiments at 11 locations across the tundra biome involved in the International Tundra Experiment. The passive warming treatment increased plant level air temperature by 1–3°C, which is in the range of predicted and observed warming or tundra regions. Responses were rapid and detected in whole plant communities after only two growing seasons. Overall, warming increased height and cover of deciduous shrubs and graminoids, decreased cover of mosses and lichens, and decreased species diversity and evenness. These results predict that warming will cause a decline in biodiversity across a wide variety of tundra, at least in the short term. They also provide rigorous experimental evidence that recently observed increases in shrub cover in many tundra regions are in response to climate warming. These changes have important implications for processes and interactions within tundra ecosystems and between tundra and the atmosphere.
Type: Journal Article
DOI Link:
Rights: The publisher does not allow this work to be made publicly available in this Repository. Please use the Request a Copy feature at the foot of the Repository record to request a copy directly from the author; you can only request a copy if you wish to use this work for your own research or private study.
Affiliation: University of Alaska Fairbanks
La Trobe University
Grand Valley State University
University of British Columbia
Florida International University
University of Gothenburg
University of Alaska Fairbanks
University of Alaska Fairbanks
Swedish Polar Research Secretariat
University of Alaska Fairbanks
University of Virginia
University Centre in Svalbard
Colorado State University
Icelandic Institute of Natural History
University of Gothenburg
Florida International University
Michigan State University
King's College London
Marine Biological Laboratory
University of California
Olympic National Park
Finnish Forest Research Institute
Norwegian University of Life Sciences
University of Colorado
University of Texas, El Paso
Michigan State University
Biological and Environmental Sciences

Files in This Item:
File Description SizeFormat 
ITEX_PNAS (2006) hi res.pdf528.77 kBAdobe PDFUnder Embargo until 31/12/2999     Request a copy

Note: If any of the files in this item are currently embargoed, you can request a copy directly from the author by clicking the padlock icon above. However, this facility is dependant on the depositor still being contactable at their original email address.

This item is protected by original copyright

Items in the Repository are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.

If you believe that any material held in STORRE infringes copyright, please contact providing details and we will remove the Work from public display in STORRE and investigate your claim.