Paleoecology of the Sierra Nevada

R. Scott Anderson's work on Sierra Nevada paleoecology spans sites from relatively low elevation in the Lower Montane forests of Yosemite National Park to sites near treeline in the Subalpine forest.

He and his colleagues and students are interested in the development of forest communities since the last glacial, including the present interglacial (the Holocene), as well as the history of the dominant agent of disturbance—fire.

Below are a few of the locations for which they presently have data on both forest and fire history.

  • siesta lake
    siesta lake

    Siesta Lake

    Siesta Lake, located at the transition between the Upper Montane & Subalpine forests, provided the first long-term history of fire from this vegetation type (Brunelle & Anderson 2003*).

  • gaylor lake
    gaylor lake

    Lower Gaylor Lake

    Lower Gaylor Lake, Yosemite National Park, is located close to upper treeline.

  • woski pond
    woski pond

    Woski Pond

    Woski Pond is located in Yosemite Valley, and is the lowest elevation site in the transect.

  • barrett lake
    barrett lake

    Barrett Lake

    Barrett Lake, located in the Subalpine forest, is one of the few lakes that Scott and his colleagues have studied on the east side of the Sierran Crest.

 * Brunelle, A.R. and R.S. Anderson. 2003. Sedimentary charcoal as an indicator of Late-Holocene drought in the Sierra Nevada, California and its relevance to the future. The Holocene 13(1), 21-28.