A novel comparative research platform designed to determine the functional significance of tree species diversity in European forests

TitleA novel comparative research platform designed to determine the functional significance of tree species diversity in European forests
Publication TypeMiscellaneous
Year of Publication2013
AuthorsBaeten L., Verheyen K., Wirth C., Bruelheide H., Bussotti F., Finér L., Jaroszewicz B., Selvi F., Valladares F., Allan E., Ampoorter E., Auge H., Avǎcǎriei D., Barbaro L., Bǎrnoaiea I., Bastias C.C., Bauhus J., Beinhoff C., Benavides R., Benneter A., Berger S., Berthold F., Boberg J., Bonal D., Brüggemann W., Carnol M., Castagneyrol B., Charbonnier Y., Chećko E., Coomes D., Coppi A., Dalmaris E., Dǎnilǎ G., Dawud S.M., de Vries W., De Wandeler H., Deconchat M., Domisch T., Duduman G., Fischer M., Fotelli M., Gessler A., Gimeno T.E., Granier A., Grossiord C., Guyot V., Hantsch L., Hättenschwiler S., Hector A., Hermy M., Holland V., Jactel H., Joly F.-X., Jucker T., Kolb S., Koricheva J., Lexer M.J., Liebergesell M., Milligan H., Müller S., Muys B., Nguyen D., Nichiforel L., Pollastrini M., Proulx R., Rabasa S., Radoglou K., Ratcliffe S., Raulund-Rasmussen K., Seiferling I., Stenlid J., Vesterdal L., von Wilpert K., Zavala M.A., Zielinski D., Scherer-Lorenzen M.
Keywordsbiodiversity, Ecosystem functioning, FunDivEUROPE, Multidiversity, Multifunctionality, Tree species diversity
TagsBiodiversity, ecosystem functioning, FunDivEUROPE, Multidiversity, Multifunctionality, Tree species diversity
Abstract

One of the current advances in functional biodiversity research is the move away from short-lived test systems towards the exploration of diversity-ecosystem functioning relationships in structurally more complex ecosystems. In forests, assumptions about the functional significance of tree species diversity have only recently produced a new generation of research on ecosystem processes and services. Novel experimental designs have now replaced traditional forestry trials, but these comparatively young experimental plots suffer from specific difficulties that are mainly related to the tree size and longevity. Tree species diversity experiments therefore need to be complemented with comparative observational studies in existing forests. Here we present the design and implementation of a new network of forest plots along tree species diversity gradients in six major European forest types: the FunDivEUROPE Exploratory Platform. Based on a review of the deficiencies of existing observational approaches and of unresolved research questions and hypotheses, we discuss the fundamental criteria that shaped the design of our platform. Key features include the extent of the species diversity gradient with mixtures up to five species, strict avoidance of a dilution gradient, special attention to community evenness and minimal covariation with other environmental factors. The new European research platform permits the most comprehensive assessment of tree species diversity effects on forest ecosystem functioning to date since it offers a common set of research plots to groups of researchers from very different disciplines and uses the same methodological approach in contrasting forest types along an extensive environmental gradient.

Biological diversity, or the shorter "biodiversity," means the diversity, or variety, of plants and animals and other living things in a particular area or region. It describes the variability among living organisms from all sources, including terrestrial, marine, and other aquatic ecosystems and the ecological complexes of which they are part. Biodiversity includes diversity within species, between species, and between ecosystems. (MA, 2003)
a woody perennial plant, typically large and with a well-defined stem or stems carrying a more or less definite crown — note sometimes defined as attaining a minimum diameter of 5 in (12.7 cm) and a minimum height of 15 ft (4.6 m) at maturity, with no branches within 3 ft (1 m) of the ground. http://dictionaryofforestry.org/dict/term/tree
Describes the number of different species that are represented in a given community or population. The effective number of species (trees, plants, mosses,...) refers to the number of equally abundant species needed to obtain the same mean proportional species abundance as that observed in specific community or population (where all species may not be equally abundant). Species diversity consists of two components: species richness and species evenness. Species richness is a simple count of species, whereas species evenness quantifies how equal the abundances of the species are.
An intrinsic ecosystem characteristic whereby an ecosystem maintains its integrity. Ecosystem processes include decomposition, production [of plant matter], nutrient cycling, and fluxes of nutrients and energy. (MA 2003)
a woody perennial plant, typically large and with a well-defined stem or stems carrying a more or less definite crown — note sometimes defined as attaining a minimum diameter of 5 in (12.7 cm) and a minimum height of 15 ft (4.6 m) at maturity, with no branches within 3 ft (1 m) of the ground. http://dictionaryofforestry.org/dict/term/tree
Describes the number of different species that are represented in a given community or population. The effective number of species (trees, plants, mosses,...) refers to the number of equally abundant species needed to obtain the same mean proportional species abundance as that observed in specific community or population (where all species may not be equally abundant). Species diversity consists of two components: species richness and species evenness. Species richness is a simple count of species, whereas species evenness quantifies how equal the abundances of the species are.
a woody perennial plant, typically large and with a well-defined stem or stems carrying a more or less definite crown — note sometimes defined as attaining a minimum diameter of 5 in (12.7 cm) and a minimum height of 15 ft (4.6 m) at maturity, with no branches within 3 ft (1 m) of the ground. http://dictionaryofforestry.org/dict/term/tree
Describes the number of different species that are represented in a given community or population. The effective number of species (trees, plants, mosses,...) refers to the number of equally abundant species needed to obtain the same mean proportional species abundance as that observed in specific community or population (where all species may not be equally abundant). Species diversity consists of two components: species richness and species evenness. Species richness is a simple count of species, whereas species evenness quantifies how equal the abundances of the species are.
An environmental factor describes any factors of biotic or abiotic nature with an influence on organisms. Wiki
URLhttp://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?eid=2-s2.0-84880925296&partnerID=40&md5=049439ac5121dd4ccb6f5a256db6f203

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