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Feasibility of Reconstructing Climate in Hawai'i Using Dendrochronology

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Title:Feasibility of Reconstructing Climate in Hawai'i Using Dendrochronology
Authors:Ueunten, Ryan
Contributors:Alegado, Rosie (advisor)
Timmermann, Axel (advisor)
Oceanography (department)
Global Environmental Science (department)
Keywords:climate change
Date Issued:2016
Publisher:University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Place of Publication:Honolulu
Abstract:Dendrochronology, a method of analyzing annual tree ring growth to study past
climates, is commonly used throughout the world (Cook & Jacoby, 1977; GonzalezElizondo et al., 2005; Woodhouse et al., 2002; Li et al., 2011; Griffin et al., 2011; Worbes,
1999; Brienen & Zuidema, 2005). However, few dendrochronological studies have been
conducted in Hawaiʻi (Samuelson et al., 2013; Fransisco et al., 2015), where strong
temperature seasonality is not prevalent. I assess the application of dendrochronology in
Hawaiʻi by investigating if (1) introduced conifers can produce annual tree rings and (2) if
a relationship between annual tree ring growth and climate (i.e. temperature, rainfall, and
cloud cover) exists. In addition, I investigate whether tree ring growth is sensitive to El
Niño events. After digitally analyzing 17 tree cores collected from Hawaiʻi Island, 2 out of
6 sampled trees (33%) had years of first growth match the planting years recorded in the
forestry logs, thus indicating annual tree ring production. Moreover, there was an indication
that two species (Cryptomeria japonica and Pseudotsuga menziesii) at two windward sites
had corresponding tree ring growth. However, there were no strong and significant
correlations between tree ring growth and temperature, rainfall, and cloud cover.
Furthermore, tree ring growth did not respond to a combination of temperature, rainfall,
and cloud cover as tested by a multiple linear regression model. Lastly, tree ring growth
did not respond to strong El Niño events. Future studies should investigate the relationship
between climate and tree ring growth in Hawaiʻi.
Pages/Duration:65 pages
Rights:All UHM dissertations and theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from this source for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without written permission from the copyright owner.
Rights Holder:Ueunten, Ryan
Appears in Collections: Global Environmental Science Theses

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