Dendrochronological Potential of Drought-Sensitive Tree Stands in Armenia for the Hydroclimate Reconstruction of the Lesser Caucasus

Magdalena Opała-Owczarek, Hrachuhi Galstyan, Piotr Owczarek, Hovik Sayadyan, Trahel Vardanyan
2021 Atmosphere  
Existing high-resolution reconstructions of hydroclimate variability in the Caucasus are lacking tree-ring data from Armenian Plateau, the most continental part of the region. Our research presents the first dendrochronological investigation in Armenia. Juniper and oak tree-ring width chronologies were constructed, the longest spanning the last 140 years. The positive influence of spring–summer precipitation and the negative influence of temperature suggest drought stress at the investigated
more » ... the investigated sites. Moving correlation analysis indicated a significant change over time in the sensitivity of investigated trees to climatic variability; juniper, previously sensitive to both temperature and precipitation, has shown especially strong precipitation signals in the recent decades since the local climate has turned more arid. Ongoing climate change increases drought stress in juniper, which may have further consequences on semiarid ecosystems. Our results reveal multiannual droughts recorded by tree rings, emerging in most parts of the Black Sea–Caspian Sea region.
doi:10.3390/atmos12020153 fatcat:lqcyse3ckrbvndpttzwbaf7j4e