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Title

Tree diversity does not always improve resistance of forest ecosystems to drought

AuthorsGrossiord, Charlotte; Valladares Ros, Fernando
KeywordsClimate change
Ecology
Species interaction
Carbon isotope composition
FundivEUROPE
Issue Date14-Oct-2014
PublisherNational Academy of Sciences (U.S.)
CitationProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA 111(41): 14812-14815 (2014)
AbstractClimate models predict an increase in the intensity and frequency of drought episodes in the Northern Hemisphere. Among terrestrial ecosystems, forests will be profoundly impacted by drier climatic conditions, with drastic consequences for the functions and services they supply. Simultaneously, biodiversity is known to support a wide range of forest ecosystem functions and services. However, whether biodiversity also improves the resistance of these ecosystems to drought remains unclear. We compared soil drought exposure levels in a total of 160 forest stands within five major forest types across Europe along a gradient of tree species diversity. We assessed soil drought exposure in each forest stand by calculating the stand-level increase in carbon isotope composition of late wood from a wet to a dry year (Δδ13CS). Δδ13CS exhibited a negative linear relationship with tree species diversity in two forest types, suggesting that species interactions in these forests diminished the drought exposure of the ecosystem. However, the other three forest types were unaffected by tree species diversity. We conclude that higher diversity enhances resistance to drought events only in drought-prone environments. Managing forest ecosystems for high tree species diversity does not necessarily assure improved adaptability to the more severe and frequent drought events predicted for the future.
Publisher version (URL)http://dx.doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1411970111
URIhttp://hdl.handle.net/10261/139280
DOI10.1073/pnas.1411970111
E-ISSN1091-6490
Appears in Collections:(MNCN) Artículos
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