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  1. Introduction Tree defense characteristics play a crucial role in modulating conifer bark beetle interactions, and there is a growing body of literature investigating factors mediating tree growth and resin-based defenses in conifers. A subset of studies have looked at relationships between tree growth, resin duct morphology and climate; however, these studies are almost exclusively from lower-elevation, moisture-limited systems. The relationship between resin ducts and climate in higher-elevation, energy-limited ecosystems is currently poorly understood. Methods In this study, we: (1) evaluated the relationship between biological trends in tree growth, resin duct anatomy, and climatic variability and (2) determined if tree growth and resin duct morphology of whitebark pine, a high-elevation conifer of management concern, is constrained by climate and/or regional drought conditions. Results We found that high-elevation whitebark pine trees growing in an energy-limited system experienced increased growth and defense under warmer and regionally drier conditions, with climate variables explaining a substantive proportion of variation (∼20–31%) in tree diameter growth and resin duct anatomy. Discussion Our results suggest that whitebark pine growth and defense was historically limited by short growing seasons in high-elevation environments; however, this relationship may change in the future with prolonged warming conditions. 
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    The unprecedented size of the 2017 wildfires that burned nearly 600,000 hectares of central Chile highlight a need to better understand the climatic conditions under which large fires develop. Here we evaluate synoptic atmospheric conditions at the surface and free troposphere associated with anomalously high (active) versus low (inactive) months of area burned in south-central Chile (ca. 32–41° S) from the Chilean Forest Service (CONAF) record of area burned from 1984–2018. Active fire months are correlated with warm surface temperatures, dry conditions, and the presence of a circumpolar assemblage of high-pressure systems located ca. 40°–60° S. Additionally, warm surface temperatures associated with active fire months are linked to reduced strength of cool, onshore westerly winds and an increase in warm, downslope Andean Cordillera easterly winds. Episodic warm downslope winds and easterly wind anomalies superimposed on long-term warming and drying trends will continue to create conditions that promote large fires in south-central Chile. Identifying the mechanisms responsible for easterly wind anomalies and determining whether this trend is strengthening due to synoptic-scale climatic changes such as the poleward shift in Southern Hemisphere westerly winds will be critical for anticipating future large fire activity in south-central Chile. 
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    Ice patches are an irreplaceable archive of past events. With atypical melting now occurring around the world, it is important to be able to quantify and interpret the potential of what remains in areas of archaeological interest. A ground-penetrating radar (GPR) survey was conducted at an archaeologically productive ice patch in the Greater Yellowstone Area to identify sediment layers in which archaeological materials may be present. Numerous reflective surfaces were observed and interpreted as being organic-rich layers called lags. GPR did not reveal all lag surfaces that were easily identifiable in an ice core that was collected concurrently at the same ice patch. 400 MHz and 900 MHz antennas were used in the survey, but neither fully revealed the basal profile of the ice patch. This is likely the result of the short time-window in which the data were collected, as opposed to attenuation of the radar waves deep in the ice. Future applications of the technology are explored. 
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