JAMES H. SPEER
Professor of Geography & Geology
Ph.D., University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Office: Science 159E
Educational Excellence Teaching Award, Arts & Sciences, 2005
Course Instruction: ENVI 110: Intro to Environmental Sciences, ENVI 385: Structural Geology, ENVI 460: Conservation of Natural Resources, ENVI 415/515: Field Geography of the United States, ENVI 418/518: Soil Genesis and Classification, ENVI 465/565: Fundamentals of Tree Ring Research, EMVI 490/590: Biogeography, ENVI 497/597: Quaternary Paleoecology
Research Interests: Biogeography, Dendrochronology
Dr. Speer is a dendrochronologist with experience in reconstructing environmental variables that affect tree growth, such as insect outbreaks, fire, masting, and climate. He is excited about the many uses and more widespread applications of dendrochronology. He is presently developing tree-ring chronologies in the tropics where previously researchers had thought that annual rings did not form. He has developed the first insect outbreak reconstructions on pandora moth, a frequent defoliator of western pine forests and he has developed new methods that enable dendrochronologists to use treerings to reconstruct past fruiting in oak trees. He has received 5 NSF grants and many other federal grants to fund his work
2011 Greenberg, C.H., Keyser, T.L., and Speer, J.H. Temporal patterns of oak mortality in a Southern Appalachian forest (1991-2006). Natural Areas Journal 31(2): 131-137.
2010 Speer, J.H. Fundamentals of Tree-Ring Research. The University of Arizona Press. 324pp.
2010 Speer, J.H., Clay, K., Bishop, G., and Creech, M. The Effect of Periodical Cicadas on Growth of Five Tree Species in Midwestern Deciduous Forests. American Midland Naturalist 164: 173-186.
2009 Rachfuss, J., Ziegler, S.S., Speer, J.H., and Siegert, N.W. Dendroecological analysis of spruce budworm outbreaks and their relation to climate near the prairie-forest border in northwestern Minnesota. Physical Geography 30(3): 185-204.
2009 Speer, J.H., Grissino-Mayer, G.H., Orvis, K., and Greenberg, K. Climate response of five oak species in the Eastern Deciduous Forest of the Southern Appalachian Mountains, U.S.A. Canadian Journal of Forest Research 39: 507-518.
2008 Arabas, K.B., Black, B., Lentile, L., Speer, J.H., and Sparks, J. Disturbance history of a mixed conifer stand in central Idaho, USA. Tree-Ring Research 64 (2): 67-80.
2007 Speer, J.H. and Hansen-Speer, K.H. Ecological applications of dendrochronology in archaeology. Journal of Ethnobiology 27(1): 88-109.
2007 Fraver, S., Seymour, R.S., Speer, J.H., and White, A.S. Dendrochronological Reconstruction of Spruce Budworm Outbreaks in Northern Maine, USA. Canadian Journal of Forest Research 37: 523-529.
2006 Rauchfuss, J. and Speer, J.H. Age dependence of spiral grain in white oaks (Quercus alba L.) in southwestern Illinois. Tree-Ring Research 62(1):13-24.
2005 Beilfuss, M.L. and Speer, J.H. Achieving scientific literacy in the undergraduate earth science classroom. Journal for the Liberal Arts and Sciences, 9(4): 13-19.
2004 Speer, J.H. and Holmes, R. Stem analysis on four ponderosa pine trees affected by repeated pandora moth defoliation in central Oregon. Tree-Ring Research 60(2): 69–76.
2004 Speer, J.H., Orvis, K.H., Grissino-Mayer, H.D., Kennedy, L.M., and Horn, S.P. Assessing the dendrochronological potential of Pinus occidentalis Swartz in the Cordillera Central of the Dominican Republic. The Holocene 14(4): 563–569.
2003 Speer, J.H., and Jensen R.R. A hazards approach towards modeling pandora moth risk. Journal of Biogeography 30: 1899–1906.
2002 Lafon, C.W. and Speer, J.H. Using Dendrochronology to identify major ice storm events in oak forests of southwestern Virginia. Climate Research 20(1): 41–54.
2001 Speer, J.H., Swetnam, T.W., Wickman, B.E., and Youngblood, A. Changes in pandora moth outbreak dynamics during the past 622 years. Ecology 82(3): 679–697.