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Positive relationship between species richness and aboveground biomass across forest strata in a primary Pinus kesiya forest.

Research paper by Shuaifeng S Li, Jianrong J Su, Xuedong X Lang, Wande W Liu, Guanglong G Ou

Indexed on: 06 Feb '18Published on: 06 Feb '18Published in: Scientific Reports



Abstract

Both biodiversity and biomass are important variables in forest ecosystems, and the relationship between them is critical for ecosystem functioning and management. The primary Pinus kesiya forest is increasingly threatened by human disturbance in Yunnan Province. We observed that species richness had a positive impact on aboveground biomass across all forest vegetation layers, and this relationship was strongest in the herb layer. The asymptotic relationship between cumulative species number and aboveground biomass suggested that individual of Pinus kesiya trees with relatively large diameters contributed the majority of the aboveground biomass in the tall tree strata due to their strong competitive advantage over other tree species. Although aboveground biomass increased with stand age in the tall tree strata, climate factors and the soil nutrient regime affected the magnitude of the diversity-productivity relationship. Stand age had no significant effect on species richness and aboveground biomass in the forest understory. The effect of the positive diversity-productivity relationship of the tall trees on the shrub layer was negligible; the diversity-productivity relationship in the forest understory was significantly affected by the tall tree aboveground biomass. The tall trees have increased the strength of the positive diversity-productivity relationship in the forest understory.