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Modelling occurrence and status of mat-forming lichens in boreal forests to assess the past and current quality of reindeer winter pastures

Uboni, Alessia and Blochel, Alexander and Kodnik, Danijela and Moen, Jon (2019). Modelling occurrence and status of mat-forming lichens in boreal forests to assess the past and current quality of reindeer winter pastures. Ecological indicators. 96 , 99-106
[Journal article]

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ecolind.2018.08.008

Abstract

Lichens play an essential role in northern ecosystems as important contributors to the water, nutrient and carbon cycles, as well as the main winter food resource for reindeer (Rangifer tarandus, also called caribou in North America), the most abundant herbivores in arctic and subarctic regions. Today, climate change and several types of land use are rapidly transforming northern ecosystems and challenging lichen growth. Since lichens are important indicators of ecosystem health and habitat suitability for reindeer, large-scale assessments are needed to estimate their past, present and future status. In our study, we aimed to develop models and equations that can be used by stakeholders to identify the occurrence of lichen-dominated boreal forests and to determine lichen conditions in those forests. Data were collected in Sweden and most input data are publicly available. We focused on mat-forming lichens belonging to the genera Cladonia and Cetraria, which are dominant species in the reindeer and caribou winter diet. Our models described lichen-dominated forests as being dominated by Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris), having low basal area and thin canopy cover, and being located in south- and west-facing areas with high summer precipitation, low winter precipitation and temperature, and on gentle slopes. Within those forests, lichen biomass was positively related to tree canopy cover and summer precipitation, while negatively and exponentially related to intensity of use of the area by reindeer. Forest, meteorological, topographic and soil data can be used as input in our models to determine lichen conditions without having to estimate lichen biomass through demanding and expensive fieldwork.

Authors/Creators:Uboni, Alessia and Blochel, Alexander and Kodnik, Danijela and Moen, Jon
Title:Modelling occurrence and status of mat-forming lichens in boreal forests to assess the past and current quality of reindeer winter pastures
Series/Journal:Ecological indicators (1470-160X)
Year of publishing :2019
Volume:96
Page range:99-106
Number of Pages:8
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:1470-160X
Language:English
Additional Information:Message from the Authors: Until October 25 2018, anybody can download a pdf version of the published manuscript for free at this link: https://authors.elsevier.com/a/1XgcY_,3LxxmJRE
Publication Type:Journal article
Refereed:Yes
Article category:Scientific peer reviewed
Version:Accepted version
Copyright:Creative Commons: Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0
Full Text Status:Public
Subjects:(A) Swedish standard research categories 2011 > 1 Natural sciences > 106 Biological Sciences (Medical to be 3 and Agricultural to be 4) > Ecology
Keywords:Caribou, Ground lichen, Lichen growth, Lichen volume, Reindeer forage, Reindeer husbandry, Terricolous lichen
URN:NBN:urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-e-5021
Permanent URL:
http://urn.kb.se/resolve?urn=urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-e-5021
Additional ID:
Type of IDID
DOI10.1016/j.ecolind.2018.08.008
ID Code:15650
Faculty:VH - Faculty of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Science
Department:(VH) > Institutionen för husdjurens utfodring och vård
Deposited By: SLUpub Connector
Deposited On:20 Sep 2018 10:47
Metadata Last Modified:09 Sep 2020 14:17

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