Skip to content

Research at St Andrews

Reconstructing 800 years of summer temperatures in Scotland from tree rings

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Author(s)

Miloš Rydval, Neil J. Loader, Björn E. Gunnarson, Daniel L. Druckenbrod, Hans W. Linderholm, Steven G. Moreton, Cheryl Victoria Wood, Rob Wilson

School/Research organisations

Abstract

This study presents a summer temperature reconstruction using Scots pine tree-ring chronologies for Scotland allowing the placement of current regional temperature changes in a longer-term context. ‘Living-tree’ chronologies were extended using ’subfossil’ samples extracted from nearshore lake sediments resulting in a composite chronology > 800 years in length. The North Cairngorms (NCAIRN) reconstruction was developed from a set of composite blue intensity high-pass and ring-width low-pass chronologies with a range of detrending and disturbance correction procedures. Calibration against July-August mean temperature explains 56.4% of the instrumental data variance over 1866-2009 and is well verified. Spatial correlations reveal strong coherence with temperatures over the British Isles, parts of western Europe, southern Scandinavia and northern parts of the Iberian Peninsula. NCAIRN suggests that the recent summer-time warming in Scotland is likely not unique when compared to multi-decadal warm periods observed in the 1300s, 1500s, and 1730s, although trends before the mid-16th century should be interpreted with some caution due to greater uncertainty. Prominent cold periods were identified from the 16th century until the early 1800s – agreeing with the so-called Little Ice Age observed in other tree-ring reconstructions from Europe - with the 1690s identified as the coldest decade in the record. The reconstruction shows a significant cooling response one year following volcanic eruptions although this result is sensitive to the datasets used to identify such events. In fact, the extreme cold (and warm) years observed in NCAIRN appear more related to internal forcing of the summer North Atlantic Oscillation.
Close

Details

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2951-2974
Number of pages24
JournalClimate Dynamics
Volume49
Issue number9-10
Early online date12 Jan 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2017

    Research areas

  • Temperature reconstruction, Subfossil, Tree-ring, Scots pine, Scotland

Discover related content
Find related publications, people, projects and more using interactive charts.

View graph of relations

Related by author

  1. Disproportionately strong climate forcing from extratropical explosive volcanic eruptions

    Toohey, M., Krüger, K., Schmidt, H., Timmreck, C., Sigl, M., Stoffel, M. & Wilson, R., Feb 2019, In : Nature Geoscience. 12, 2, p. 100-107 8 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  2. Tree rings reveal globally coherent signature of cosmogenic radiocarbon events in 774 and 993 CE

    Büntgen, U., Wacker, L., Galván, J. D., Arnold, S., Arseneault, D., Baillie, M., Beer, J., Bernabei, M., Bleicher, N., Boswijk, G., Bräuning, A., Carrer, M., Ljungqvist, F. C., Cherubini, P., Christl, M., Christie, D. A., Clark, P. W., Cook, E. R., D’Arrigo, R., Davi, N. & 47 othersEggertsson, Ó., Esper, J., Fowler, A. M., Gedalof, Z., Gennaretti, F., Grießinger, J., Grissino-Mayer, H., Grudd, H., Gunnarson, B. E., Hantemirov, R., Herzig, F., Hessl, A., Heussner, K-U., Jull, A. J. T., Kukarskih, V., Kirdyanov, A., Kolář, T., Krusic, P. J., Kyncl, T., Lara, A., LeQuesne, C., Linderholm, H. W., Loader, N. J., Luckman, B., Miyake, F., Myglan, V. S., Nicolussi, K., Oppenheimer, C., Palmer, J., Panyushkina, I., Pederson, N., Rybníček, M., Schweingruber, F. H., Seim, A., Sigl, M., Churakova (Sidorova), O., Speer, J. H., Synal, H-A., Tegel, W., Treydte, K., Villalba, R., Wiles, G., Wilson, R., Winship, L. J., Wunder, J., Yang, B. & Young, G. H. F., 6 Sep 2018, In : Nature Communications. 9, 7 p., 3605.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  3. A combined tree ring and vegetation model assessment of European forest growth sensitivity to interannual climate variability

    Klesse, S., Babst, F., Lienert, S., Spahni, R., Joos, F., Bouriaud, O., Carrer, M., Di Filippo, A., Poulter, B., Trotsiuk, V., Wilson, R. & Frank, D. C., 23 Aug 2018, In : Global Biogeochemical Cycles. Early View, 15 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  4. Large-scale, millennial-length temperature reconstructions from tree-rings

    Esper, J., George, S. S., Anchukaitis, K., D'Arrigo, R., Ljungqvist, F., Luterbacher, J., Schneider, L., Stoffel, M., Wilson, R. & Büntgen, U., Aug 2018, In : Dendrochronologia. 50, p. 81-90 10 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  5. Blue intensity from a tropical conifer’s annual rings for climate reconstruction: an ecophysiological perspective

    Buckley, B. M., Hansen, K. G., Griffin, K. L., Schmiege, S., Oelkers, R., D’Arrigo, R. D., Stahle, D. K., Davi, N., Nguyen, T. Q. T., Le, C. N. & Wilson, R. J. S., Aug 2018, In : Dendrochronologia. 50, p. 10-22 13 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Related by journal

  1. A millennial long March-July precipitation reconstruction for southern-central England

    Wilson, R., Miles, D., Loader, N. J., Melvin, T., Cunningham, L., Cooper, R. & Briffa, K., 1 Feb 2013, In : Climate Dynamics. 40, 3-4, p. 997-1017 21 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  2. A tree-ring reconstruction of East Anglian (UK) hydroclimate variability over the last millennium

    Cooper, R. J., Melvin, T. M., Tyers, I., Wilson, R. & Briffa, K. R., Feb 2013, In : Climate Dynamics. 40, 3-4, p. 1019-1039 21 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  3. Cycles and Shifts: 1300-years of multi-decadal temperature variability in the Gulf of Alaska

    Wilson, R. J. S., Wiles, G., D'Arrigo, R. & Zweck, C., Mar 2007, In : Climate Dynamics. 28, 4, p. 425-440 16 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  4. Summer Temperatures in the Candadian Rockies During the Last Millenium: A Revised Record

    Luckman, B. H. & Wilson, R. J. S., Feb 2005, In : Climate Dynamics. 24, 2, p. 131-144 14 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

ID: 248169755