RNA: Red Gum
County: Sharkey Co.
Forest: Delta National Forest
District: Delta Ranger District
Established: 1943; Acres: 40
To view Establishment records for Red Gum RNA in PDF format, Click Here
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Physical and Climatic Conditions
Nearest weather station, with distance and direction from RNA: Anguilla is 8 miles to the northeast and Holly Bluff is 5 miles to the southeast.
Annual precipitation (type, seasonal distribution): The annual precipitation is 53”, fairly well distributed throughout the year, but highest from December to April (5-6” per month) and lowest from September to October (2-3 inches per month).
Maximum and minimum temperatures: The mean annual temperature is 65°F, with July the hottest month (average 82°) and December and January the coolest (average 43°).
Elevation: 90 – 95 ft., with a slope to the south
Geology and Soils: relatively young Inceptisols of Sharkey–Dowling Association, with Sharkey clay, a waxey yellow–brown soil that occurs extensively throughout the bottomlands of the Mississipppi River in MS, AR and LA.
Aquatic Features: The site is 4.5 km east of the Big Sunflower River.
Plant Communities: The area supports old growth bottomland hardwoods that once covered the entire Yazoo-Mississippi Delta, now very scarce. The dominant species are sweetgum (Liquidambar styraciflua) and box elder (Acer negundo), and other abundant species are sugarberry (Celtis laevigata), American elm (Ulmus americana), Other species of note include red maple (Acer rubrum), overcup oak (Quercus lyrata), Nuttall oak (Quercus nuttallii), and green ash (Fraxinus pennsylvanica).
SAF Cover Types
Sweetgum – willow oak – 92
At Risk Species: A colony of pondberry (Lindera melissifolia) occurs in the RNA
Common Shrub Species: Common shrubs are palmetto (Sabal minor) and bamboo (Arundinaria gigantea). Common lianas are poison ivy (Toxicodendron radicans), trumpet creeper (Campsis radicans) and pepper vine (Ampelopsis arborea).
Common Herbaceous Species: Smilax spp, Senecio glabellus, Spilanthes americana, and Cocculus carolinus.
Common Mammal Species:
||White-footed/ cotton mouse
||Eastern wood rat
||Eastern gray squirrel
Common Bird Species:
Related Reports and Publications:
Additional reports and publications can also be found by clicking on the “RNA Publications and Products” link in the site menu or by clicking here.
Abilio, Fernanda; Smith III, Carl G.; Tidwell, Collin; Hamel, Paul; Devall, Margaret; Leininger, Ted. 2008. Pondberry (Lindera melissifolia) seed predators. Revista Forestal Latinoamericana. Memorias Electronicas C54-2 Pagina 2-8.
Allen, Bruce P. 2007. Vegetation dynamics and response to disturbance, in floodplain forest ecosystems with a focus on lianas. Dissertation presented in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree Doctor of Philosophy in the Graduate School of The Ohio State University, The Ohio State University. (studied Red Gum, Overcup Oak, Green Ash and other sites)
Oliver, Chadwick Dearing, Burkhardt, E.C., Skojac, Daniel A. 2005. The increasing scarcity of red oaks in Mississippi River floodplain forests: influence of the residual overstory. Forest Ecology and Management 210: 393–414. (one of 16 stands in this study was in the Red Gum RNA, but RNA is not mentioned in the publication)
Echt, Craig S.; Deemer, Dennis; Gustafson, Danny. 2011. Patterns of differentiation among endangered pondberry populations. Conserv Genet (2011) 12:1015–1026. (part of study in Red Gum RNA)
Johnson, R.L. and T.L. Price. 1959. Resume of 20 years of hardwood management on the Delta Purchase Unit. Unpublished, Stoneville Research Center, Stoneville, Mississippi. 74p
Ramp, P.F. 1990. Ecological Assessment of the Red Gum, Overcup Oak and Green Ash Research Natural Area in the Delta National Forest, Mississippi.. 22p
Devall, Margaret S. and Paul Ramp. 1992. The Forest Service Research Natural Area Program and old growth forests in the South. Natural Areas Journal 12(2): 75-85.
Devall M. 2000. What the Delta looked like before European settlers came. Delta Wildlife 2000: 8–9 (popular article, partly about Red Gum RNA)
Scott, F.T. and L.B. Walton. 1962. Soil survey of Sharkey County, Mississippi..
United States Department of Agriculture Soil Conservation Service.
Smith, C. G.; Hamel, P. B.; Gullo, M. F. 2010. Evaluating small mammal response to natural disturbance and restoration in oak ecosystems in the Mississippi Alluvial Valley. Revista Colombia Forestal 13: 335–346. (in the Red Gum and Overcup Oak RNAs)
Smith III, Carl G.; Hamel, Paul B.; Devall, Margaret S. and Schiff, Nathan M. 2004. Hermit Thrush is the First Observed Dispersal Agent for Pondberry (Lindera melissifolia). Castanea 69(1):1–8. (part of study in the Red Gum RNA)
Scharf, Elizabeth A. 2010. Archaeology, land use, pollen and restoration in the Yazoo Basin (Mississippi, USA) Vegetation History Archaeobotany 19:159–175. (discusses the Red Gum RNA)
Wiseman, J.B., Jr. 1982. A study of the composition, successional relationships and floristics of Mississippi River floodplain forests in parts of Washington, Boliver and Sharkey Counties, Mississipppi. Ph.D. Dissertation, Mississippi State University.
Last Modified: 1/14/2016 by Margaret Devall (email@example.com)