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Dryad

Carbon sequestration in intact rare ecosystems and their encroaching forests (Michigan, USA)

Cite this dataset

Woller-Skar, Meg; Locher, Alexandra; Audia, Ellen (2024). Carbon sequestration in intact rare ecosystems and their encroaching forests (Michigan, USA) [Dataset]. Dryad. https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.931zcrjtp

Abstract

Rising atmospheric carbon dioxide levels are impacting global temperatures, ecological systems, and human societies. Natural carbon sequestration through the conservation of soil and native ecosystems may slow or reduce the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere, and thus slow or mitigate the rate of global warming. Most of the research investigating carbon sequestration in natural systems occurs in forested ecosystems, however rare ecosystems such as coastal plain marshes and wet-mesic sand prairie collectively may serve as significant carbon sinks. Our objectives were to measure and assess the importance of carbon sequestration in three rare ecosystems (oak-pine barrens, coastal plain marsh, and wet-mesic sand prairie) in western Lower Michigan. We measured carbon in standing vegetation, dead organic matter, and soils within each ecosystem and adjacent encroaching forested areas. Driven by tree carbon, total carbon stocks in encroaching areas were greater than in intact rare ecosystems. Soil organic carbon was greater in all intact ecosystems, though only significantly so in coastal plain marsh.  Principal components analysis explained 72% of the variation and revealed differences between intact ecosystems and their encroaching areas. Linear models using the ratio of red to green light reflectance successfully predicted SOC in intact coastal plain marsh and wet-mesic sand prairie. Our results infer the importance of these rare ecosystems in sequestering carbon in soils and support the need to establish federal or state management practices for the conservation of these systems.

README: README: Carbon stocks in rare ecosystems

https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.931zcrjtp

We have submitted our site environmental data (C.sites.env_open.xlsx), carbon stocks (C.data_open.xlsx), soil bulk density and percent carbon (SOC.calc_open.xlsx), and all files related to spatial modeling (C_spatialdata_(1).zip).

Descriptions

C.sites.env_open

  • Date indicates the date the environmental data were collected. NA indicates the date information was not recorded and is not available
  • Community refers to the ecosystem in which the site was located
  • Type has two categorical variables, "Buffer" which represents encroaching forests, and "Transect" which represents intact ecosystem
  • Site includes the values 1 and 2, indicative of the two paired locations (intact and encroaching) used to measure carbon
  • Sample Code is a combination of the ecosystem type (abbreviations are CPM for coastal plain marsh, OPB for oak-pine barrens, and WMP for wet-mesic prairie) and the sample number
  • HumidityPer indicates the percent humidity of the air
  • WindSpeedMph indicates the wind speed in miles per hour
  • AirT indicates the air temperature in Fahrenheit
  • SoilpH indicates the soil pH at approximately 12.5 cm depth
  • SoilT indicates the soil temperature in Celsius

C.data_open

  • ID is a unique identifier assigned the row in the dataset
  • Date indicates the date samples and data were collected to quantify carbon stocks. NA indicates the date information was not recorded and is not available
  • Ecosystem refers to the ecosystem in which the site was located
  • Type has two categorical variables, "Encroaching" which represents encroaching forests, and "Intact" which represents intact ecosystem
  • Site includes the values 1 and 2, indicative of the two paired locations (intact and encroaching) used to measure carbon
  • Sample Code is a combination of the ecosystem type (abbreviations are CPM for coastal plain marsh, OPB for oak-pine barrens, and WMP for wet-mesic prairie) and the sample number
  • TreetCha indicates the carbon measured in trees - aboveground in metric tons per hectare
  • DOMtCha indicates the carbon measured in dead organic matter in metric tons per hectare
  • HerbtCha indicates the carbon measured in the herbaceous layer in metric tons per hectare
  • SOCtCha indicates the carbon measured in soil organic carbon in metric tons per hectare
  • TotwSOCtCha indicates the total carbon measured in metric tons per hectare, or the sum of trees aboveground, DOM, herbaceous plants, and soil organic carbon.
  • TotwoSOCtCha indicates the total carbon measured in metric tons per hectare, or the sum of trees aboveground, DOM, and herbaceous plants. NO soil organic carbon.
  • Red_band1 indicates the RGB code of reflectance for red light from NAIP imagery
  • Green_band2 indicates the RGB code of reflectance for green light from NAIP imagery
  • Blue_band3 indicates the RGB code of reflectance for blue light from NAIP imagery
  • IR_band4 indicates the RGB code of reflectance for infrared light from NAIP imagery

SOC.calc_open

We collected soil samples using an auger from two subplots collected after the organic layer (leaf litter) was removed. These subsamples are denoted A and B. After these soil samples were homogenized and sieved, two more samples were collected for processing through ignition. This means that each site has four corresponding values (1A, 1B, 2A, 2B) for %organic matter and bulk density.

%C Tab --- 

  • Community indicates the ecosystem in which the site was located
  • Type has two categorical variables, "Buffer" which represents encroaching forests, and "Transect" which represents intact ecosystem
  • Soil site/plot/ecosystem indicates the separate samples (1A, 1B, 2A, 2B) for each site combined with the ecosystem type and site number. CPM refers to coastal plain marsh, OPB refers to oak-pine barrens, and WMP refers to wet-mesic prairie.
  • %OM indicates the percent organic matter lost through ignition at 500 Celsius.

BulkDen Tab ---

  • Ecosystem includes abbreviations for coastal plain marsh (CPM), oak-pine barrens (OPB), and wet-mesic prairie (WMP).
  • Type includes Encroaching and Intact and encroaching to indicate site type
  • Bulk density was measured in four subsamples (1A, 1B, 2A, 2B) in grams per cubic centimeter

C_spatialdata_(1).zip

We used imagery circa 2016 from the National Agriculture Inventory Program (NAIP) to map soil organic carbon (SOC) based on models developed from field-collected soil and vegetation data within coastal plain marshes and wet-mesic sand prairies at Allegan State Game Area, Michigan, USA. Linear models using the red to green light reflectance ratio successfully predicted soil organic carbon within those two ecosystems. The files in this dataset include NAIP imagery of the area surrounding a coastal plain marsh and wet-mesic prairie within the Allegan State Game Area and Muskegon State Game Area. The Allegan State Game Area site was used for model development. The Muskegon State Game Area site was used for model validation.

• asga_naip2016.tif
Allegan State Game Area NAIP imagery circa 2016
NAIP Imagery 2016 (acquired from Earth Explorer -https://earthexplorer.usgs.gov/)
Location: subset of Allegan State Game Area, Michigan, USA
Spatial Reference NAD 1983 UTM Zone 16 North
Reference: National Agriculture Inventory Program. 4-band color infrared Imagery (1-m); 2012 [cited 2023 635 Sept 21]. USDA-FSA-APFO Aerial Photography Field Office, United States Department of 636 Agriculture. https://naip-usdaonline.hub.arcgis.com/.
• asga_landcov.tif
Allegan State Game Area land cover classification based on 2016 NAIP imagery
Location: subset of Allegan State Game Area, Michigan, USA
Raster data file (1m resolution)
Spatial Reference NAD 1983 UTM Zone 16 North
Classification Codes:
   0 = Upland deciduous
   1 = Open
   2 = Water
   3 = Impervious
   4 = Shadow
   5 = Coniferous
   6 = Aspen
• asga_soc.tif
Allegan State Game Area soil organic carbon
Soil organic carbon (t/ha) predictions in a wet-mesic prairie and coastal plain marsh at Allegan State Game Area, Michigan, USA.
Values predicted from 2016 NAIP imagery and soil samples collected in the field.
• msga_naip2016.tif
Muskegon State Game Area NAIP imagery circa 2016
NAIP Imagery 2016 (acquired from Earth Explorer - https://earthexplorer.usgs.gov/)
Location: subset of Muskegon State Game Area, Michigan, USA
Spatial Reference NAD 1983 UTM Zone 16 North
Reference: National Agriculture Inventory Program. 4-band color infrared Imagery (1-m); 2012 [cited 2023 635 Sept 21]. USDA-FSA-APFO Aerial Photography Field Office, United States Department of 636 Agriculture. https://naip-usdaonline.hub.arcgis.com/.
• msga_landcov.tif
Muskegon State Game Area land cover classification based on 2016 NAIP imagery
Location: subset of Muskegon State Game Area, Michigan, USA
Raster data file (1m resolution)
Spatial Reference NAD 1983 UTM Zone 16 North
Classification Codes:
   0 = Upland deciduous
   1 = Open
   2 = Water
   3 = Impervious
   4 = Shadow
   5 = Coniferous
   6 = Aspen
• msga_soc_cpm
Muskegon State Game Area soil organic carbon for coastal plain marsh
Location: subset of Muskegon State Game Area, Michigan, USA
Spatial Reference NAD 1983 UTM Zone 16 North
Soil organic carbon (t/ha) predictions in a coastal plain marsh at Muskegon State Game Area, Michigan, USA. Values predicted from 2016 NAIP imagery and soil samples collected in the field.
• msga_soc_wmp
Muskegon State Game Area soil organic carbon for wet-mesic prairie
Location: subset of Muskegon State Game Area, Michigan, USA
Spatial Reference NAD 1983 UTM Zone 16 North
Soil organic carbon (t/ha) in a wet-mesic prairie at Muskegon State Game Area, Michigan, USA. Values predicted from 2016 NAIP imagery and soil samples collected in the field

Funding

Michigan Space Grant Consortium