ADVERTISEMENT
See Inside Scientific American Volume 308, Issue 6

Ring around the Climate: Monsoon Rains Leave Lasting Traces in Trees [Video]

Centuries of rainfall history are written in tree rings



By Adrian Pingstone, Public Domain

More In This Article

A tree's annual growth cycle creates a record of good seasons—and poor ones. Analyzing ring patterns in living and dead wood can help scientists date ancient ships or reconstruct changing climates.

In the U.S. Southwest researchers rely on tree rings to track changes in the seasonal monsoon rains that deliver about half of New Mexico and Arizona's precipitation. In the June issue of Scientific American Connie Woodhouse, associate professor in the School of Geography and Development at the University of Arizona, describes what the annual rings reveal.

Woodhouse and two Arizona graduate students give a behind-the-scenes look at the institution's Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research in this video by Arizona Public Media. They describe the ongoing monsoon project that matches tree ring data with instrumental records to reveal how rain cycleshave shaped life in the Sonoran Desert.

Rights & Permissions
Share this Article:

Comments

You must sign in or register as a ScientificAmerican.com member to submit a comment.
Scientific American Back To School

Back to School Sale!

12 Digital Issues + 4 Years of Archive Access just $19.99

Order Now >

X

Email this Article



This function is currently unavailable

X