Title

Short Term Affect of Salt Water from Hurricane Mathew Storm Surge on Coastal Loblolly Pine Populations

School Name

Governor's School for Science and Mathematics

Grade Level

12th Grade

Presentation Topic

Botany

Presentation Type

Mentored

Written Paper Award

2nd Place

Abstract

Hurricanes have devastating effects on the coast of South Carolina every time one passes. Their high winds and storm surge completely destroy coastal forest ecosystems. The project that we worked on focused on the immediate affects of Hurricane Matthew on these coastal forests. More specifically we focused on the affects of the storm surge on coastal loblolly pine and wax myrtle forests at Hobcaw Barony, located near Georgetown, South Carolina. These forests were divided into 20 meter by 100 meter plots, in these plots every tree was assigned a number and marked with a tag. The first method we used to gather data was to measure the DBH of the trees in these plots and use these data to calculate the basal area and mortality of the plots. The second method we used was to measure the amount regeneration in these same plots. From the mortality data we gathered, we observed that large trees weren’t as affected immediately by Hurricane Matthew. From the regeneration data we observed that loblolly pines regenerated at slower rates in plots that were covered by the storm surge and that wax myrtles faired only a little better. From this we learn that loblolly pines are at a competitive disadvantage after storm surges, as they are not able to regenerate quickly. This project has helped us to learn more about patterns forests have after hurricanes strike.

Location

Neville 105

Start Date

4-14-2018 12:00 PM

Presentation Format

Oral and Written

COinS
 
Apr 14th, 12:00 PM

Short Term Affect of Salt Water from Hurricane Mathew Storm Surge on Coastal Loblolly Pine Populations

Neville 105

Hurricanes have devastating effects on the coast of South Carolina every time one passes. Their high winds and storm surge completely destroy coastal forest ecosystems. The project that we worked on focused on the immediate affects of Hurricane Matthew on these coastal forests. More specifically we focused on the affects of the storm surge on coastal loblolly pine and wax myrtle forests at Hobcaw Barony, located near Georgetown, South Carolina. These forests were divided into 20 meter by 100 meter plots, in these plots every tree was assigned a number and marked with a tag. The first method we used to gather data was to measure the DBH of the trees in these plots and use these data to calculate the basal area and mortality of the plots. The second method we used was to measure the amount regeneration in these same plots. From the mortality data we gathered, we observed that large trees weren’t as affected immediately by Hurricane Matthew. From the regeneration data we observed that loblolly pines regenerated at slower rates in plots that were covered by the storm surge and that wax myrtles faired only a little better. From this we learn that loblolly pines are at a competitive disadvantage after storm surges, as they are not able to regenerate quickly. This project has helped us to learn more about patterns forests have after hurricanes strike.