Title: Research Ecologist
Unit: Sustaining Forests in a Changing Environment
Address: Northern Research Station
PO Box 267
Irvine, PA 16329
E-mail: Contact Todd Ristau
Jump to Publications
- The State University of New York, College of Env. Sci. and For. -- PhD 2010.
- The Pennsylvania State University -- MS in Forest Science 1997.
- Houghton College -- BS in Biology 1991.
Civic & Professional Affiliations
Ecological Society of America, 1995 to present
Torrey Botanical Society, 1998 to present
Society of American Foresters 1995 to present
- My research has focused on recovery of herbaceous vegetation following forest management. I have worked on developing methods for sampling herbaceous plants and am involved in two studies assessing the impact of herbicide application on recovery of herbs.
- I am investigating the role of buried seed as a mechanism in vegetation recovery. I am interested in recognizing silvicultural problems and opportunities during the early stem exclusion phase of stand development and have studied the role of pin cherry during that phase.
- I am currently analyzing data from a long-term cleaning/crop tree release study established in 1936 on the Kane Experimental Forest.
Why is This Important
Our mission is to enhance the basic understanding of Allegheny Plateau forest ecosystems and to develop resource management guidelines. Understanding how management activities alter the herbaceous plant community in stands under a variety of management strategies is critical to the practice of ecosystem management. Understanding the competitive ability of species like black birch, black cherry, and pin cherry are important. Understanding establishment requirements and creating conditions favorable for species like cucumber tree, yellow-poplar, white ash, red maple, and sugar maple to become established where possible is critical.
- I will continue to monitor herbaceous plant communities following management activities to determine what changes might occur and whether these changes are permanent or temporary.
- I plan to work with others to recognize the conditions that result in monoculture following overstory removal and to apply existing silvicultural practices in ways to promote mixed species regeneration. Understanding the competitive ability of species like black birch, black cherry, and pin cherry are important. Understanding establishment requirements and creating conditions favorable for species like cucumber, yellow-poplar, white ash, red maple, and sugar maple to become established where possible is also critical.
- Trager, Matthew D.; Ristau, Todd E.; Stoleson, Scott H.; Davidson, Robert L.; Acciavatti, Robert E. 2013. Carabid beetle responses to herbicide application, shelterwood seed cut and insect defoliator outbreaks. Forest Ecology and Management. 289: 269-288.
- Royo, Alejandro A.; Ristau, Todd E. 2013. Stochastic and deterministic processes regulate spatio-temporal variation in seed bank diversity. Journal of Vegetation Science. 24: 724-734.
- Goetsch, Chandra; Wigg, Jennifer; Royo, Alejandro A.; Ristau, Todd; Carson, Walter P. 2011. Chronic over browsing and biodiversity collapse in a forest understory in Pennsylvania: Results from a 60 year-old deer exclusion plot. The Journal of the Torrey Botanical Society. 138(2): 220-224.
- Nuttle, Tim; Yerger, Ellen H.; Stoleson, Scott H.; Ristau, Todd E. 2011. Legacy of top-down herbivore pressure ricochets back up multiple trophic levels in forest canopies over 30 years. Ecosphere. 2(1): Article 4.
- Stoleson, Scott H.; Ristau, Todd E.; deCalesta, David S.; Horsley, Stephen B. 2011. Ten-year response of a forest bird community to an operational herbicide-shelterwood treatment in Allegheny hardwoods. Forest Ecology and Management. 262: 1205-1214.
- Ristau, Todd E.; Stoleson, Scott H.; Horsley, Stephen B.; deCalesta, David S. 2011. Ten-year response of the herbaceous layer to an operational herbicide-shelterwood treatment in a northern hardwood forest. Forest Ecology and Management. 262: 970-979.
- Horsley, Stephen B.; Bailey, Scott W.; Ristau, Todd E.; Long, Robert P.; Hallett, Richard A. 2008. Linking environmental gradients, species composition, and vegetation indicators of sugar maple health in the northeastern United States. Canadian Journal of Forest Research. 38: 1761-1774.
- Brose, Patrick H.; Gottschalk, Kurt W.; Horsley, Stephen B.; Knopp, Peter D.; Kochenderfer, James N.; McGuinness, Barbara J.; Miller, Gary W.; Ristau, Todd E.; Stoleson, Scott H.; Stout, Susan L. 2008. Prescribing regeneration treatments for mixed-oak forests in the Mid-Atlantic region. Gen. Tech. Rep. NRS-33. Newtown Square, PA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Northern Research Station. 100 p.
- Morin, Randall S.; Liebhold, Andrew M; Gottschalk, K.W.; Woodall, Chris W.; Twardus, Daniel B.; White, Robert L.; Horsley, Stephen B.; Ristau, Todd E. 2006. Analysis of forest health monitoring surveys on the Allegheny National Forest (1998-2001). Gen. Tech. Rep. NE-339. Newtown Square, PA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Northeastern Research Station. 102 p.
- Stout, Susan L.; Hoover, Coeli M.; Ristau, Todd E. 2006. Listening to old beech and young cherry trees - long-term research in the Alleghenies. In: Irland, Lloyd C.; Camp, Ann E.; Brissette, John C.; and Donohew, Zachary R., eds. Long-term Silvicultural & Ecological Studies: Results for Science and Management. New Haven, CT: Yale University: 10-25
- Stout, Susan L.; Ristau, Todd E. 2005. Long-term Research on the USFS Kane Experimental Forest in Northwestern Pennsylvania. In: Kenefic, Laura S.; Twery, Mark J., eds. Changing Forests - Challenging Times: Proceedings of the New England Society of American Foresters 85th Winter Meeting; 2005 March 16-18; Gen. Tech. Rep. NE-325. Newtown Square, PA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Northeastern Research Station: 76
- Ristau, Todd E.; Horsley, Stephen B.; McCormick, Larry H. 2001. Sampling to assess species diversity of herbaceous layer vegetation in Allegheny hardwood forests. Journal of the Torrey Botanical Society. 128(2): 150-164.
- Ristau, Todd E.; Horsley, Stephen B. 1999. Pin cherry effects on Allegheny hardwood stand development. Canadian Journal of Forest Research. 29: 73-84.
- McCormick, Larry H.; Groninger, John W.; Penrod, Kathy A.; Ristau, Todd E. 1993. Deer exclusion effects on understory development following partial cutting in a Pennsylvania oak stand. In: Gillespie, Andrew R.; Parker, George R.; Pope, Phillip E.; Rink, George: eds. Proceedings of the 9th Central Hardwood Forest Conference; Gen. Tech. Rep. NC-161. St. Paul, MN: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, North Central Forest Experiment Station: 418-427