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Department of Natural Resource Ecology and Management

NREM Faculty - Chris Zou

Associate Professor

562 Ag Hall (office)
008C Ag Hall (address)
Stillwater, OK 74078
(405) 744-9637

Educational Background
BS: Biology, Southwest University, 1985
MS: Plant Ecology, Southwest University, 1988
PhD: Forest Science, University of Canterbury, 2000



  • NREM 4443/5443: Watershed Hydrology and Water Quality
  • NREM 5483: Ecohydrology
  • NREM 5020: Graduate Seminar

Research Interests

  • Ecohydrology
  • Soil Ecology& Soil Physics
  • Watershed and Wildland Hydrology

Recent Publications (since 2010)

  • Dong J, Ochsner TE, Zreda M, Cosh MH, Zou CB. 2014. Calibration and validation of the COSMOS Rover for surface soil moisture measurement. Vadose Zone Journal. doi:10.2136/vzj2013.08.0148.
  • Qiao L*, Hong Y, Chen S, Zou CB, Gourley JJ, Yong B. 2014. Performance assessment of the successive Version-6 and Version-7 TMPA over the climate-transitional zone in southern Great Plain, USA. Journal of Hydrology, 513:44-456.
  • Zou CB, Turton DJ, Will RE, Engle DM, Fuhlendorf SD. Alteration of hydrological processes and streamflow with juniper (Juniperus virginiana) encroachment in a mesic grassland catchment. Hydrological Processes 28:6173-6182.
  • Caterina GL, Will RE, Turton DJ, Wilson DS, Zou CB. 2013. Water use of Juniperus virginiana trees encroached into mesic prairies. Ecohydrology. DOI: 10.1002/eco.1444.
  • Ge J, Zou CB. 2013. Impacts of woody plant encroachment on regional climate in the Southern Great Plains of the USA. Journal of Geophysical Research – Atmosphere 118, 9093-9104. doi:10.1002/jgrd.50634, 2013
  • Will RE, Wilson SM, Zou CB, Hennessey TC. 2013. Increased vapor pressure deficit due to higher temperature leads to greater transpiration and faster mortality during drought for tree seedlings common to the forest-grassland ecotone. New Phytologist. 200:366–374. doi: 10.1111/nph.12321
  • Breshears DD, Adams HD, Eamus D, McDowell N, Law DJ, Will RE, Williams AP and Zou CB. 2013. The critical amplifying role of increasing atmospheric moisture demand on tree mortality and associated regional die-off. Frontiers in Plant Science 4:266. doi: 10.3389/fpls.2013.00266
  • Twidwell D, Wonkka CL, Taylor CA, Zou CB, Twidwell JJ, Rogers WE. 2013. Drought-induced woody plant mortality in an encroached semiarid savanna depends on topoedaphic factors and land management. Applied Vegetation Science. doi: 10.1111\avsc.12044
  • Adams HD, Germino MJ, Breshears DD, Barron- Gafford GA, Guardiola-Claramonte M, Zou CB, Huxman TE. 2013. Non-structural leaf carbohydrate dynamics of Pinus edulis during drought-induced tree mortality reveal role for carbon metabolism in mortality mechanism. New Phytologist 197:1142-51. doi: 10.1111/nph.12102
  • Chen SJ*, Chen C, Zou CB, Stebler E, Zhang SX, Hou L, Wang D. 2012. Application of Gash analytical model and parameterized Fan model to estimate canopy interception of a Chinese red pine forest. Journal of Forest Research. 18: 335-344. doi:10.1007/s10310-012-0364-z
  • Wine ML*, Zou CB, Bradford JA, Gunter SA. 2012. Runoff and sediment responses to grazing native and introduced species on highly erodible Southern Great Plains soil. Journal of Hydrology 450-451: 336 – 341
  • Royer PD, Breshears DD, Zou CB, Villegas JC, Cobb NS, Kurc SA. 2012. Density-dependent ecohydrological effects of Pinion–Juniper woody canopy cover on soil microclimate and potential soil evaporation. Rangeland Ecology and Management 65:11-20. doi: 10.2111/rem-d-11-00007.1
  • Field JP, Breshears DD, Whicker JJ, Zou CB. 2012. Sediment capture by vegetation patches: Implications for desertification and increased resource redistribution. Journal of Geophysical Research-Biogeosciences. doi:10.1029/2011jg001663
  • Miao SL, Zou CB. 2012. Effects of inundation on the growth and nutrient allocation of six major macrophytes in the Florida Everglades. Ecological Engineering 42: 10-18. doi: 10.1016/j.ecoleng.2012.01.009
  • Wine ML*, Zou CB. 2012. Long-term streamflow relations with riparian gallery forest expansion into tallgrass prairie in the Southern Great Plains, USA. Forest Ecology and Management 266: 170 – 179. doi: 10.1016/j.foreco.2011.11.014
  • Miller GR, Cable JM, McDonald AK, Bond B, Tyler AP, Franz TE, Wang LX, Zou CB. 2012. Understanding ecohydrological connectivity in savannas: a system dynamics modelling approach. Ecohydrology 5:200-220. doi: 10.1002/eco.245
  • Wang LX, Zou CB, O’Donnell F, Goods, Franz T, Milller GR, Caylor KK, Cable JM, Bond B. 2012. Characterizing ecohydrological and biogeochemical connectivity across multiple scales: a new conceptual framework. Ecohydrology 5:221-233. doi: 10.1002/eco.187
  • Chen SJ*, Chen C, Zou CB, Zhang SX, Wang D, Hou L. 2011. Canopy effect on rainfall redistribution and timing of throughfall and stemflow occurrence in a Pinus tabulaeformis forest in the Qinling Mountains, China. Acta Ecologica Sinica. 32:1142-1150
  • Field JP, Breshears DD,Whicker JJ, Zou CB. 2011. Interactive effects of grazing and burning on wind- and water-driven sediment fluxes: rangeland management implications. Ecological Applications 21:22-32. doi: 10.1890/09-2369.1
  • Field JP, Breshears DD, Whicker JJ, Zou CB. 2011. On the ratio of wind- to water-driven sediment transport: Conserving soil under global-change-type extreme events. Journal of Soil and Water Conservation 66:51A – 56A. doi: 10.2489/jswc.66.2.51A
  • Villegas JC, Breshears DD, Zou CB, Royer PD. 2010. Seasonally-pulsed heterogeneity in microclimate: phenology and cover effects along deciduous grassland-forest continuum. Vadose Zone Journal 9:537–547. doi:10.2136/vzj2009.0032
  • Zou CB, Royer PD, Breshears DD. 2010. Density-dependent shading patterns by Sonoran saguaros. Journal of Arid Environments 74:156-158. doi: 10.1016/j.jaridenv.2009.07.001
  • Villegas JC, Breshears DD, Zou CB, Law DJ. 2010. Ecohydrological controls of soil evaporation in deciduous drylands: How the hierarchical effects of litter, patch and vegetation mosaic cover interact with phenology and season. Journal of Arid Environment 74:595-602. doi:10.1016/j.jaridenv.2009.09.028
  • Royer PD, Breshears DD, Zou CB, Cobb NS, Kurc SA. 2010. Ecohydrological energy inputs in semiarid coniferous gradients:  Responses to management- and drought-induced tree reductions. Forest Ecology and Management 260:1646-1655. doi: 10.1016/j.foreco.2010.07.036
  • Zou CB, Ffolliott PF, Wine M. 2010. Streamflow responses to vegetation manipulations along a gradient of precipitation in the Colorado River Basin. Forest Ecology and Management 259:1268 – 1276. doi:10.1016/j.foreco.2009.08.005