EGU2020-7730, updated on 06 Nov 2020
EGU General Assembly 2020
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Impact of cloud coverage on growth dynamics of Cedrela nebulosa from an Amazonian pre-montane forest in Central Ecuador

Danny Vargas1, Darwin Pucha-Cofrep2, Angélica Burneo2, Lisseth Carlosama3, Madison Herrera3, Sheila Serrano3, Marco Cerna4, A.J. Timothy Jull1,5,6, Mihály Molnár1, István Futó1, Anikó Horváth1, Marjan Temovski1, and László Palcsu1
Danny Vargas et al.
  • 1Institute for Nuclear Research, Isotope Climatology and Environmental Research Centre, Hungary (
  • 2Universidad Nacional de Loja, Carrera de Ingeniería Forestal, Laboratorio de Dendrocronología, EC-110101 Loja, Ecuador
  • 3Universidad Politécnica Salesiana, Carrera de Ingeniería Ambiental, Grupo de Investigación en Ciencias Ambientales GRICAM. Centro de Investigación en Modelamiento Ambiental CIMA-UPS, 170109, Quito, Ecuador
  • 4Universidad Politécnica Salesiana, Carrera de Ingeniería en Biotecnología, Grupo de Investigación Nunkui Wakan, 170801, Quito, Ecuador
  • 5Department of Geosciences, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ, 85721, USA
  • 6University of Arizona AMS Laboratory, Tucson, AZ, 85721, USA

The neotropical tree genus Cedrela (Meliaceae) had originated in dry forest under seasonal climates in North America, then spread to South America during the Oligocene/Early Miocene and finally adapted to deciduous forest in the Pliocene Epoch. At present, Cedrela comprises 17 species distributed in the Neotropics (24N-27S) and in Ecuador; the species Cedrela nebulosa (T.D.Penn. & Daza) generally develops in the altitudinal range of 1100-2400 m a.s.l. The town of Mera, Pastaza in Central Ecuador was the first lowland Amazonian site from which paleoecological data were acquired. It brought about the hypothesis of a 4.5 oC temperature depression during glacial times recently supported by a paleolimnological record in the area. However, despite the dry events during glacial periods there was not a loss of forest structure owing to the importance of cloud cover formation enhanced by the lower temperatures (Montoya et al., 2018).

Our research aims to study the role that cloud cover plays in the pre-montane forest of Mera, located at the Andean eastern flank (1º24'25 S, 78º03'10 W, 1200 m a.s.l) and its coupling with modern climate variations. It is expected that cloud cover will continue moving upwards and narrowing as temperature rises overriding its buffering effect against changes in precipitation, a scenario that threatens the forest stability achieved even during glacial periods. Dendroclimatological methods will be applied with trees of Cedrela nebulosa which receive moisture and constant temperature throughout the year. Interpretations of the phenomenon are expected to be drawn using oxygen isotopes in tree-ring cellulose (δ18OTR) and precipitation (δ18OW), as well as air temperature (T), for which monitoring has been established in the study area. The formation of annual rings in the species has been preliminary validated by radiocarbon dating (14C) using the bomb peak.

The research was supported by the European Union and the State of Hungary, co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund in the project of GINOP-2.3.2-15-2016-00009 ‘ICER’.

Reference: Montoya et al., 2018. Front. Plant Sci., 9, 196; doi: 10.3389/fpls.2018.00196

How to cite: Vargas, D., Pucha-Cofrep, D., Burneo, A., Carlosama, L., Herrera, M., Serrano, S., Cerna, M., Jull, A. J. T., Molnár, M., Futó, I., Horváth, A., Temovski, M., and Palcsu, L.: Impact of cloud coverage on growth dynamics of Cedrela nebulosa from an Amazonian pre-montane forest in Central Ecuador, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-7730,, 2020


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