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Functional diversity and trait composition of vascular plant and Sphagnum moss communities during peatland succession across land uplift regions

Laine, Anna M. and Lindholm, Tapio and Nilsson, Mats and Kutznetsov, Oleg and Jassey, Vincent E. J. and Tuittila, Eeva-Stiina (2021). Functional diversity and trait composition of vascular plant and Sphagnum moss communities during peatland succession across land uplift regions. Journal of Ecology. 109 , 1774-1789
[Research article]

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Abstract

Most of the carbon accumulated into peatlands is derived from Sphagnum mosses. During peatland development, the relative share of vascular plants and Sphagnum mosses in the plant community changes, which impacts ecosystem functions. Little is known on the successional development of functional plant traits or functional diversity in peatlands, although this could be a key for understanding the mechanisms behind peatland resistance to climate change. Here we aim to assess how functionality of successive plant communities change along the autogenic peatland development and the associated environmental gradients, namely peat thickness and pH, and to determine whether trait trade-offs during peatland succession are analogous between vascular plant and moss communities.We collected plant community and trait data on successional peatland gradients from post-glacial rebound areas in coastal Finland, Sweden and Russia, altogether from 47 peatlands. This allowed us to analyse the changes in community-weighted mean trait values and functional diversity (diversity of traits) during peatland development.Our results show comparative trait trade-offs from acquisitive species to conservative species in both vascular plant and Sphagnum moss communities during peatland development. However, mosses had higher resistance to environmental change than vascular plant communities. This was seen in the larger proportion of intraspecific trait variation than species turnover in moss traits, while the proportions were opposite for vascular plants. Similarly, the functional diversity of Sphagnum communities increased during the peatland development, while the opposite occurred for vascular plants. Most of the measured traits showed a phylogenetic signal. More so, the species common to old successional stages, namely Ericacae and Sphagna from subgroup Acutifolia were detected as most similar to their phylogenetic neighbours.Synthesis. During peatland development, vegetation succession leads to the dominance of conservative plant species accustomed to high stress. At the same time, the autogenic succession and ecological engineering of Sphagna leads to higher functional diversity and intraspecific variability, which together indicate higher resistance towards environmental perturbations.

Authors/Creators:Laine, Anna M. and Lindholm, Tapio and Nilsson, Mats and Kutznetsov, Oleg and Jassey, Vincent E. J. and Tuittila, Eeva-Stiina
Title:Functional diversity and trait composition of vascular plant and Sphagnum moss communities during peatland succession across land uplift regions
Series Name/Journal:Journal of Ecology
Year of publishing :2021
Volume:109
Page range:1774-1789
Number of Pages:16
Publisher:WILEY
ISSN:0022-0477
Language:English
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:functional diversity, functional traits, intraspecific variability, peatland development, phylogenetic signal, plant economic spectrum, Sphagnum
URN:NBN:urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-p-111005
Permanent URL:
http://urn.kb.se/resolve?urn=urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-p-111005
Additional ID:
Type of IDID
DOI10.1111/1365-2745.13601
Web of Science (WoS)000617943800001
ID Code:23410
Faculty:S - Faculty of Forest Sciences
Department:(S) > Dept. of Forest Ecology and Management
Deposited By: SLUpub Connector
Deposited On:04 May 2021 09:03
Metadata Last Modified:04 May 2021 09:11

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