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Freezing trees, finding answers

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Researchers study impact of ice storms, climate change

Ecologist Lindsey Rustad sculpts ice forests. She’s not a sculptor by trade, but in her latest ecology experiment, her team sprayed water over a portion of forest during the coldest part of the night. Within hours, the water froze to the branches, simulating an ice storm.

Rustad, a scientist with USDA Forest Service, is concerned about evidence suggesting climate change will bring severe ice storms more often. Rustad wants to know how this will affect forest health.

“I’m a master forest manipulator, but this experiment, without a doubt, was the most difficult,” says Rustad.

Rustad has been manipulating forests for decades, testing the effects of climate change in a controlled setting. 

Continue reading at American Society of Agronomy

Image via Lindsey Rustad