Cross-Site Studies Take Root across the Southern Experimental Forest Network
Most of the 19 experimental forests of the Forest Service's Southern Research Station were founded in the 1930s or 1940s. Over the past five years, they have become something new: the SRS Experimental Forest Network. “Each experimental forest is a regional asset,” says Stephanie Laseter, a USDA Forest Service scientist and network co-lead. Johnny Boggs is also a co-lead. “When part of a network, each forest becomes more valuable,” says Boggs. “The Experimental Forest Network allows ideas, people, data, and resources to flow across each forest.”
A recent analysis by Ge Sun and Erika Mack compared precipitation, water yield, and evapotranspiration across sites on all experimental forests in the Network. The work is a foundational step towards understanding the sites that make up the network and will make studies that span multiple experimental forests even more useful. Rabio Olatinwo and JT Vogt have also completed analyses on drought indices across the Network. Several cross-site studies are already underway, and some are nearing completion.