Our bottom line:  “the primary substantive finding of Morton et al. of consistent canopy structure and greenness is incorrect.”  (Saleska et al., 2016)


Two years ago, Morton et al (2014) published “Amazon forests maintain consistent canopy structure and greenness during the dry season” in Nature, criticizing as an artifact the remote sensing observation that (as we wrote in an article led by Alfredo Huete in GRL in 2006) “Amazon rainforests green-up with sunlight in dry season“.

Our position:  Technical corrections for artifacts adjust the magnitude of Amazon forest seasonality downwards, relative to what they used to be, but on the basic ecology, Huete et al (2006) was basically right, and Morton et al (2014) is basically wrong.  See the latest round of our debate in the March 17, 2016 issue of Nature (including Morton et al’s response) under the heading “Dry-season greening of Amazon forests” in the “Brief communications arising” section here (paywall).

Want to know more?  See our article published in Science last month (February, 2016):  Wu, Albert et al. (2016) Leaf development and demography explain photosynthetic seasonality in Amazon evergreen forests.