Hydroclimatic change in southern Manitoba since A.D. 1409 inferred from tree rings

Scott St. George, Erik Nielsen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

62 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A record of estimated annual (prior August to current July) precipitation derived from a regional bur oak (Quercus macrocarpa Michx.) tree-ring chronology indicates that southern Manitoba's hydroclimate has been relatively stable over the last 200 yr. Although this stability was interrupted briefly by pronounced wet intervals in the late A.D. 1820s and 1850s, hydroclimatic conditions since permanent Euro-Canadian settlement were much less variable and persistent than those prior to A.D. 1790. The reconstruction indicates that the Red River basin experienced extremely dry conditions between A.D. 1670 and 1775, with below-normal precipitation occurring approximately 2 years out of 3. Annual precipitation was estimated at more than two standard deviations below the mean during A.D. 1477, 1485, 1556, 1595, 1612, 1644, 1661, 1743, 1900, and 1980. Comparisons with limnological records from North Dakota and Minnesota suggest that multidecadal fluctuations in regional hydroclimate have been remarkably coherent across the northeastern Great Plains during the last 600 yr. However, individual dry years in the Red River basin were usually associated with larger scale drought across much of the North American interior.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)103-111
Number of pages9
JournalQuaternary Research
Volume58
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2002

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tree ring
river basin
chronology
drought
Tree Rings
comparison
plain
oak

Keywords

  • Canadian Prairies
  • Dendrochronology
  • Manitoba
  • Palaeoclimate
  • Palaeohydrology
  • Precipitation
  • Quercus macrocarpa
  • Tree rings

Cite this

Hydroclimatic change in southern Manitoba since A.D. 1409 inferred from tree rings. / St. George, Scott; Nielsen, Erik.

In: Quaternary Research, Vol. 58, No. 2, 01.01.2002, p. 103-111.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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