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Unravelling the mechanisms of spatial correlation between species and size diversity in forest ecosystems

Pommerening, Arne and Zhang, Gongqiao (2021). Unravelling the mechanisms of spatial correlation between species and size diversity in forest ecosystems. Ecological Indicators. 121 , 106995
[Research article]

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With ongoing climate change at global scale we are currently losing biodiversity at an unprecedented rate. The insurance hypothesis and associated research, however, suggest that biodiversity has a major stabilising effect in ecosystems. In this situation, it is crucial to develop a better understanding of natural processes of maintaining biodiversity for employing them in conservation practice. In forest ecosystems, spatial species and size diversity are important aspects of α-diversity at woodland community and species population level. Both aspects of spatial diversity stem from complex relationships between tree interaction, disturbances and subsequent waves of colonisation by tree seedlings of various species. Using point process statistics, particularly the mark mingling function and the mark variogram, we studied the processes causing spatial correlations of species and size diversity. We found that spatial species dispersal and conspecific size distributions are key drivers of spatial species-size correlations and that a combination of simple random size-labelling techniques applied to mark variograms is instrumental in efficiently diagnosing them. If size ranges differ between species, spatial size diversity is largely a function of spatial species mingling. The existence of these correlations is crucial to conservation because they imply that conservation efforts can be rationalised: It is possible to focus on only one of the two tree diversity aspects. Interestingly, in multi-species forest ecosystems, although general species diversity is high, spatial species-size correlations can be diluted, because some of the many species populations may have similar size distributions.

Authors/Creators:Pommerening, Arne and Zhang, Gongqiao
Title:Unravelling the mechanisms of spatial correlation between species and size diversity in forest ecosystems
Series Name/Journal:Ecological Indicators
Year of publishing :2021
Article number:106995
Number of Pages:9
Publication Type:Research article
Article category:Scientific peer reviewed
Version:Published version
Copyright:Creative Commons: Attribution 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:Insurance hypothesis, Plant-plant interactions, Point process statistics, Mark mingling function, Mark variogram, Random-labelling test
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Additional ID:
Type of IDID
Web of Science (WoS)000604888900001
ID Code:22122
Faculty:S - Faculty of Forest Sciences
Department:(S) > Dept. of Forest Ecology and Management
Deposited By: SLUpub Connector
Deposited On:04 Feb 2021 14:03
Metadata Last Modified:04 Feb 2021 14:11

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