Skip to page content
USDA Forest Service

Research & Development Treesearch

Treesearch Home
About Treesearch
Contact Us
Research & Development
Forest Products Lab
International Institute of Tropical Forestry
Pacific Northwest
Pacific Southwest
Rocky Mountain
Southern Research Station
Help - We Participate  Government Made Easy

Global Forest Information Service

US Forest Service
P.O. Box 96090
Washington, D.C.

(202) 205-8333

You are here: Home / Search / Publication Information
Bookmark and Share

Publication Information

View PDF (239 KB)

Title: Potential impacts of global climate change on the hydrology and ecology of ephemeral freshwater systems of the forests of the northeastern United States

Author: Brooks, Robert T.;

Date: 2009

Source: Climatic Change. 95: 469?483.

Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)

Description: Global, national, and regional assessments of the potential effects of Global Climate Change (GCC) have been recently released, but not one of these assessments has specifically addressed the critical issue of the potential impacts of GCC on ephemeral freshwater systems (EFS). I suggest that this is a major oversight as EFS occur in various forms across the globe. In the northeastern United States, these systems, whether ephemeral ("vernal") pools or ephemeral or intermittent headwater streams are abundant and provide unique habitats critical to the maintenance of forest biodiversity. Since the hydrology of these waterbodies is strongly affected by weather patterns (in the short-term) or climate (long-term), they are especially sensitive to climate change. In this essay, I review the literature on relationships between climate and hydrology of EFS and on relationships between hydrology and ecology of these systems. I then conclude with my assessment of potential impacts of GCC on the hydrology of EFS and implications for their ecology. The focus of this essay will be on EFS of the forests of the northeastern United States, but will include literature from other regions as they relate to the general relationships between GCC and EFS.

Publication Notes:

  • We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
  • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.
  • This publication may be available in hard copy. Check the Northern Research Station web site to request a printed copy of this publication.
  • Our on-line publications are scanned and captured using Adobe Acrobat. During the capture process some typographical errors may occur. Please contact Sharon Hobrla, if you notice any errors which make this publication unusable.



Brooks, Robert T. 2009. Potential impacts of global climate change on the hydrology and ecology of ephemeral freshwater systems of the forests of the northeastern United States. Climatic Change. 95: 469?483.


 [ Get Acrobat ]  Get the latest version of the Adobe Acrobat reader or Acrobat Reader for Windows with Search and Accessibility

USDA logo which links to the department's national site. Forest Service logo which links to the agency's national site.