Relaxation of species-specific neighborhood effects in Bornean rain forest under climatic perturbation

Newbery, David McClintock; Stoll, Peter (2013). Relaxation of species-specific neighborhood effects in Bornean rain forest under climatic perturbation. Ecology, 94(12), pp. 2838-2851. Ecological Society of America 10.1890/13-0366.1

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Evidence of negative conspecific density dependence (NDD) operating on seedling survival and sapling recruitment has accumulated recently. In contrast, evidence of NDD operating on growth of trees has been circumstantial at best. Whether or not local NDD at the level of individual trees leads to NDD at the level of the community is still an open question. Moreover, whether and how perturbations interfere with these processes have rarely been investigated. We applied neighborhood models to permanent plot data from a Bornean dipterocarp forest censused over two 10-11 year periods. Although the first period was only lightly perturbed, a moderately strong El Nino event causing severe drought occurred in the first half of the second period. Such events are an important component of the environmental stochasticity affecting the region. We show that local NDD on growth of small-to-medium-sized trees may indeed translate to NDD at the level of the community. This interpretation is based on increasingly negative effects of bigger conspecific neighbors on absolute growth rates of individual trees with increasing basal area across the 18 most abundant overstory species in the first period. However, this relationship was much weaker in the second period. We interpreted this relaxation of local and community-level NDD as a consequence of increased light levels at the forest floor due to temporary leaf and twig loss of large trees in response to the drought event. Mitigation of NDD under climatic perturbation acts to decrease species richness, especially in forest overstory and therefore has an important role in determining species relative abundances at the site.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

08 Faculty of Science > Department of Biology > Institute of Plant Sciences (IPS)
08 Faculty of Science > Department of Biology > Institute of Plant Sciences (IPS) > Vegetation Ecology [discontinued]

UniBE Contributor:

Newbery, David McClintock and Stoll, Peter

Subjects:

500 Science > 580 Plants (Botany)

ISSN:

0012-9658

Publisher:

Ecological Society of America

Language:

English

Submitter:

Peter Alfred von Ballmoos-Haas

Date Deposited:

18 Feb 2014 08:08

Last Modified:

19 Oct 2016 07:43

Publisher DOI:

10.1890/13-0366.1

Uncontrolled Keywords:

conspecific competition, Danum Valley, Borneo, density dependence, Dipterocarpaceae, ENSO drought, neighborhood models, overstory species, rain forest tree community, randomization tests

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.40902

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/40902

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