Climate Dynamics

, 33:1149 | Cite as

A 694-year tree-ring based rainfall reconstruction from Himachal Pradesh, India

Article

Abstract

We developed ring-width chronologies of Cedrus deodara [(Roxb.) G. Don] and Pinus gerardiana (Wall. Ex. Lamb) from a homogeneous moisture stressed area in Kinnaur, Himachal Pradesh. Running correlation using a 50-year window with overlap of 25 years showed strong correlations between these species chronologies during the entire common period (ad 1310–2005). Response function analysis indicated that except for January–February, precipitation has a direct relationship with growth of these species. We therefore combined both the species chronologies to develop a statistically calibrated reconstruction of March–July precipitation that spans from ad 1310–2004, and explains 46% of the variance contained in the instrumental data from the calibration period 1951–1994. In the past 694 years of the reconstruction, the wettest period was in the twentieth century (1963–1992) and the driest in the eighteenth century (1773–1802). The relationships observed between reconstructed precipitation and Indian summer monsoon on interdecadal scale, SOI, PDO and NAO indicate the potential utility of such long-term reconstructions in understanding the large-scale climate variability. Multi-taper method (MTM) spectral analysis indicated significant (p < 0.05) spectral peaks at 2–4, 6, 8, 10, 30, 33, 37 and 40–42 years in the reconstructed precipitation data.

Keywords

Cedrus deodara Pinus gerardiana March–July precipitation Himachal Pradesh Western Himalaya India Tree rings 

Notes

Acknowledgments

Part of the study was supported by the Department of Science and Technology, New Delhi, India, granted to JS. RRY thanks to India Meteorological Department for providing the climate data. The Department of Forest, Himachal Pradesh, India provided necessary facilities during sampling. Part of the study was carried out at University of Greifswald, Germany (PDF to JS, supported by Sofja Kovalevskaja Research Award from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation granted to MW). We are grateful to two anonymous reviewers for their critical suggestions that substantially improved the manuscript.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jayendra Singh
    • 1
  • Ram R. Yadav
    • 2
  • Martin Wilmking
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Botany and Landscape EcologyGreifswald UniversityGreifswaldGermany
  2. 2.Birbal Sahni Institute of PalaeobotanyLucknowIndia

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