Periodic temperature-associated drought/flood drives locust-plagues in China

Beitrag in einer Fachzeitschrift

Details zur Publikation

Autor(en): Zhang Z, Cazalles B, Tian H, Stige LC, Bräuning A, Stenseth NC
Titel Sammelwerk: Proceedings of the Royal Society B
Zeitschrift: Proceedings of the Royal Society B-Biological Sciences
Verlag: Royal Society, The
Verlagsort: .
Jahr der Veröffentlichung: 2008
Band: 276
Heftnummer: 1658
Seitenbereich: 823-831
ISSN: 0962-8452
Sprache: Englisch


Global warming is currently of great concern. Yet the ecological effects of low-frequency climate variations remain largely unknown. Recent analyses of interdecadal variability in population abundance of the Oriental migratory locust (Locusta migratoria manilensis) in China have revealed negative associations with temperature and positive associations with Yangtze drought and flood frequencies during the past millennium (AD 957–1956). In order to shed new light on the causal relationships between locust abundance, floods, droughts and temperature in ancient China, we used wavelet analysis to explore how the coherencies between the different variables at different frequencies have been changed during the past millennium. We find consistent in-phase coherencies between locusts and drought/flood frequencies, and out-of-phase coherencies between locusts and temperature and between drought/flood and temperature at period components of 160–170 years. Similar results are obtained when historical data of drought/flood frequencies of the Yangtze Delta region are used, despite flood data showing a weak and somewhat inconsistent association with other factors. We suggest that previously unreported periodic cooling of 160–170-year intervals dominate climatic variability in China through the past millennium, the cooling events promoting locust plagues by enhancing temperature-associated drought/flood events. Our results signify a rare example of possible benign effects of global warming on the regional risk of natural disasters such as flood/drought events and outbreaks of pest insects.

FAU-Autoren / FAU-Herausgeber

Bräuning, Achim Prof. Dr.
Lehrstuhl für Geographie (Physische Geographie)

Autor(en) der externen Einrichtung(en)
University of Oslo


Zhang, Z., Cazalles, B., Tian, H., Stige, L.C., Bräuning, A., & Stenseth, N.C. (2008). Periodic temperature-associated drought/flood drives locust-plagues in China. Proceedings of the Royal Society B-Biological Sciences, 276(1658), 823-831.

Zhang, Zhibin, et al. "Periodic temperature-associated drought/flood drives locust-plagues in China." Proceedings of the Royal Society B-Biological Sciences 276.1658 (2008): 823-831.


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