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Regime shifts in bistable water-stressed ecosystems due to amplification of stochastic rainfall patterns

AuthorsCueto-Felgueroso, Luis; Dentz, Marco ; Juanes, Rubén
KeywordsContinuous time systems
Ecosystem resilience
Rainfall variability
Stochastic rainfalls
Issue Date28-May-2015
PublisherAmerican Physical Society
CitationPhysical Review - Section E - Statistical Nonlinear and Soft Matter Physics 91(5): Article number 052148 (2015)
AbstractWe develop a framework that casts the point water-vegetation dynamics under stochastic rainfall forcing as a continuous-time random walk (CTRW), which yields an evolution equation for the joint probability density function (PDF) of soil-moisture and biomass. We find regime shifts in the steady-state PDF as a consequence of changes in the rainfall structure, which flips the relative strengths of the system attractors, even for the same mean precipitation. Through an effective potential, we quantify the impact of rainfall variability on ecosystem resilience and conclude that amplified rainfall regimes reduce the resilience of water-stressed ecosystems, even if the mean annual precipitation remains constant. ©2015 American Physical Society.
Publisher version (URL)10.1103/PhysRevE.91.052148
Appears in Collections:(IDAEA) Artículos
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