Big Stump Picnic Area

Sequoias at Risk

Scroll to learn more

Climate change affects many plants, from the small manzanita to the giant sequoias. Higher temperatures, changing amounts of snow and rain, and increased wildfires—all aspects of climate change—confront these ancient trees.

Climate Change in National Parks: Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks

Challenge and Opportunities

Survival of the Sequoia

Sequoias may need to move in response to climate change. Some animals migrate quickly, but plants like the sequoia have limited ways to move. The wind doesn't spread their seeds far. Flip through the photos to see why.

A scattering of light brown seeds on black charred soil. This photo gallery is all color photos.

Lots of sequoia seeds are released after a fire, but they do not fall far from the tree.

A grey squirrel holds a bit of pine cone in its tiny paws as it eats.

The Douglas squirrel may carry the cones a short distance. But seeds will only grow if they land in an ideal place.

A park ranger plants seedling in a sequoia grove.

Sequoias may need our help to migrate quickly enough to survive climate change. But will this assisted migration work?

A green sequoia seedling in front of the reddish-orange trunk of a full-grown sequoia.

The true test of survival is whether these new plantings will reproduce. Trees may grow where they are planted, but will their seeds take root there, too?

A reddish-brown beetle emerges from a circular hole in a fallen log.

Forest bugs and diseases also move as the climate changes. The problem grows when people transport firewood from place to place—a good thing to avoid.

Picture our Parks

Scientists use photographs as records of a scene. We need your help to document the plants, clouds, and seasons—and how they are changing. Use the picture post to take photos and upload them here.

Upload Photos