A cluster of stratospheric volcanic eruptions in the AD 530s recorded in Siberian tree rings

Olga V. Churakova Sidorova, Marina V. Bryukhanova, Matthias Saurer, Tatjana Boettger, Mukhtar M. Naurzbaev, Vladimir S. Myglan, Eugene A. Vaganov, Malcolm K. Hughes, Rolf T.W. Siegwolf

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Recently published, improved chronologies for volcanic sulfate in Greenland and Antarctic ice permit a comparison of the growth responses of absolutely annually dated tree rings at three locations in Siberia with annual ice-core records of volcanic eruptions centered on AD 536. For the first time for this region and period, we present unique data sets for tree-ring width, cell-wall thickness, δ13C and δ18O in cellulose. These were based on multiple samples from relict wood of larch obtained from two sites close to the northern limit of tree growth on the Taimyr Peninsula and in northeastern Yakutia, and at a high-elevation, location 20° further South in the Altai Mts. An event in AD 536 was associated with different, but marked, changes in tree-ring parameters at the high-latitude sites compared with the high elevation site. An AD 541 event was associated with its own distinctive tree-ring responses across the three sites and multiple variables. The years after AD 532 were marked by a strong and sustained decrease in growth at the high-elevation, more southerly, site. The combination of improved ice-core chronology for the climatically effective volcanic eruptions of this part of the 6th century AD, and an array of tree-ring sites with different climates and multiple tree-ring variables permits a richer description of tree responses to this cluster of events. The pattern of tree-ring parameter responses at the three locations in AD 536, AD 541, and perhaps AD 532 is consistent with responses to climatically effective volcanic eruptions influencing tree response in those and subsequent years.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)140-150
Number of pages11
JournalGlobal and Planetary Change
StatePublished - Nov 2014


  • AD 536 volcanic eruption
  • Cell wall thickness
  • Climate
  • Larch
  • Tree-ring width

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Global and Planetary Change
  • Oceanography


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