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https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27928045/using-avian-functional-traits-to-assess-the-impact-of-land-cover-change-on-ecosystem-processes-linked-to-resilience-in-tropical-forests
#1
Tom P Bregman, Alexander C Lees, Hannah E A MacGregor, Bianca Darski, Nárgila G de Moura, Alexandre Aleixo, Jos Barlow, Joseph A Tobias
Vertebrates perform key roles in ecosystem processes via trophic interactions with plants and insects, but the response of these interactions to environmental change is difficult to quantify in complex systems, such as tropical forests. Here, we use the functional trait structure of Amazonian forest bird assemblages to explore the impacts of land-cover change on two ecosystem processes: seed dispersal and insect predation. We show that trait structure in assemblages of frugivorous and insectivorous birds remained stable after primary forests were subjected to logging and fire events, but that further intensification of human land use substantially reduced the functional diversity and dispersion of traits, and resulted in communities that occupied a different region of trait space...
December 14, 2016: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27928036/the-value-of-trophic-interactions-for-ecosystem-function-dung-beetle-communities-influence-seed-burial-and-seedling-recruitment-in-tropical-forests
#2
Hannah M Griffiths, Richard D Bardgett, Julio Louzada, Jos Barlow
Anthropogenic activities are causing species extinctions, raising concerns about the consequences of changing biological communities for ecosystem functioning. To address this, we investigated how dung beetle communities influence seed burial and seedling recruitment in the Brazilian Amazon. First, we conducted a burial and retrieval experiment using seed mimics. We found that dung beetle biomass had a stronger positive effect on the burial of large than small beads, suggesting that anthropogenic reductions in large-bodied beetles will have the greatest effect on the secondary dispersal of large-seeded plant species...
December 14, 2016: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27924430/nutrient-enrichment-effects-on-mycorrhizal-fungi-in-an-andean-tropical-montane-forest
#3
Camille S Delavaux, Tessa Camenzind, Jürgen Homeier, Rosa Jiménez-Paz, Mark Ashton, Simon A Queenborough
Nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) deposition are increasing worldwide largely due to increased fertilizer use and fossil fuel combustion. Most work with N and P deposition in natural ecosystems has focused on temperate, highly industrialized, regions. Tropical regions are becoming more developed, releasing large amounts of these nutrients into the atmosphere. Nutrient enrichment in nutrient-poor systems such as tropical montane forest can represent a relatively large shift in nutrient availability, especially for sensitive microorganisms such as arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF)...
December 6, 2016: Mycorrhiza
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27923573/the-impacts-of-selective-logging-and-clear-cutting-on-woody-plant-diversity-after-40years-of-natural-recovery-in-a-tropical-montane-rain-forest-south-china
#4
Yi Ding, Runguo Zang, Xinghui Lu, Jihong Huang
Historically, clear-cutting and selective logging have been the commercial logging practices. However, the effect of these pervasive timber extraction methods on biodiversity in tropical forests is still poorly understood. In this study, we compared abiotic factors, species diversity, community composition, and structure between ca. 40-year-old clear-cut (MCC); ca. 40-year-old selectively logged (MSL); and tropical old growth montane rain forests (MOG) on Hainan Island, China. Results showed that there were a large number of trees with a diameter at breast height (DBH) <30cm in the two logged forests...
December 3, 2016: Science of the Total Environment
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27870051/chemical-similarity-and-local-community-assembly-in-the-species-rich-tropical-genus-piper
#5
Diego Salazar, M Alejandra Jaramillo, Robert J Marquis
Community ecologists have strived to find mechanisms that mediate the assembly of natural communities. Recent evidence suggests that natural enemies could play an important role in the assembly of hyper-diverse tropical plant systems. Classic ecological theory predicts that in order for coexistence to occur, species differences must be maximized across biologically important niche dimensions. For plant-herbivore interactions, it has been recently suggested that, within a particular community, plant species that maximize the difference in chemical defense profiles compared to neighboring taxa will have a relative competitive advantage...
November 2016: Ecology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27870044/foliar-bacteria-and-soil-fertility-mediate-seedling-performance-a-new-and-cryptic-dimension-of-niche-differentiation
#6
Eric A Griffin, M Brian Traw, Peter J Morin, Jonathan N Pruitt, S Joseph Wright, Walter P Carson
The phyllosphere (comprising the leaf surface and interior) is one of the world's largest microbial habitats and is host to an abundant and diverse array of bacteria. Nonetheless, the degree to which bacterial communities are benign, harmful, or beneficial to plants in situ is unknown. We tested the hypothesis that the net effect of reducing bacterial abundance and diversity would vary substantially among host species (from harmful to beneficial) and this would be strongly mediated by soil resource availability...
November 2016: Ecology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27861539/vertical-structure-of-phyllosphere-fungal-communities-in-a-tropical-forest-in-thailand-uncovered-by-high-throughput-sequencing
#7
Ayako Izuno, Mamoru Kanzaki, Taksin Artchawakom, Chongrak Wachrinrat, Yuji Isagi
Phyllosphere fungi harbor a tremendous species diversity and play important ecological roles. However, little is known about their distribution patterns within forest ecosystems. We examined how species diversity and community composition of phyllosphere fungi change along a vertical structure in a tropical forest in Thailand. Fungal communities in 144 leaf samples from 19 vertical layers (1.28-34.4 m above ground) of 73 plant individuals (27 species) were investigated by metabarcoding analysis using Ion Torrent sequencing...
2016: PloS One
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27859202/higher-%C3%AE-diversity-observed-for-herbs-over-woody-plants-is-driven-by-stronger-habitat-filtering-in-a-tropical-understory
#8
Stephen J Murphy, Kara Salpeter, Liza S Comita
Herbaceous plants are a key component of tropical forests. Previous work indicates that herbs contribute substantially to the species richness of tropical plant communities. However, the processes structuring tropical herb diversity, and how they contrast with woody communities, have been underexplored. Within the understory of a 50-ha forest dynamics plot in central Panama, we compared the diversity, distribution, and abundance of vascular herbaceous plants with woody seedlings (i.e., tree and lianas <1 cm DBH and ≥20 cm tall)...
August 2016: Ecology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27859154/generalist-birds-promote-tropical-forest-regeneration-and-increase-plant-diversity-via-rare-biased-seed-dispersal
#9
Tomás A Carlo, Juan M Morales
Regenerated forests now compose over half of the world's tropical forest cover and are increasingly important as providers of ecosystem services, freshwater, and biodiversity conservation. Much of the value and functionality of regenerating forests depends on the plant diversity they contain. Tropical forest diversity is strongly shaped by mutualistic interactions between plants and fruit-eating animals (frugivores) that disperse seeds. Here we show how seed dispersal by birds can influence the speed and diversity of early successional forests in Puerto Rico...
July 2016: Ecology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27857167/significant-phylogenetic-signal-and-climate-related-trends-in-leaf-caloric-value-from-tropical-to-cold-temperate-forests
#10
Guangyan Song, Ying Li, Jiahui Zhang, Meiling Li, Jihua Hou, Nianpeng He
Leaf caloric value (LCV) is a useful index to represent the conversion efficiency of leaves for solar energy. We investigated the spatial pattern of LCV and explored the factors (phylogeny, climate, and soil) that influence them at a large scale by determining LCV standardized by leaf area in 920 plant species from nine forest communities along the 3700 km North-South Transect of Eastern China. LCV ranged from 0.024 to 1.056 kJ cm(-2) with an average of 0.151 kJ cm(-2). LCV declined linearly with increasing latitude along the transect...
November 18, 2016: Scientific Reports
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27755754/impacts-of-land-use-on-indian-mangrove-forest-carbon-stocks-implications-for-conservation-and-management
#11
R K Bhomia, R A MacKenzie, D Murdiyarso, S D Sasmito, J Purbopuspito
Globally, mangrove forests represents only 0.7% of world's tropical forested area but are highly threatened due to susceptibility to climate change, sea level rise, and increasing pressures from human population growth in coastal regions. Our study was carried out in the Bhitarkanika Conservation Area (BCA), the second-largest mangrove area in eastern India. We assessed total ecosystem carbon (C) stocks at four land use types representing varying degree of disturbances. Ranked in order of increasing impacts, these sites included dense mangrove forests, scrub mangroves, restored/planted mangroves, and abandoned aquaculture ponds...
July 2016: Ecological Applications: a Publication of the Ecological Society of America
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27755700/taxonomic-and-functional-divergence-of-tree-assemblages-in-a-fragmented-tropical-forest
#12
Julia C Sfair, Víctor Arroyo-Rodríguez, Bráulio A Santos, Marcelo Tabarelli
Tropical forests are being exposed to increasing levels of habitat loss and fragmentation, threatening the maintenance of global biodiversity. However, the effect that land-use change may have on the spatial dissimilarities in taxonomic and functional composition of remaining assemblages (i.e., taxonomic/functional β-diversity) remains poorly understood. We examined a large vegetation database from an old and severely fragmented Atlantic forest landscape to test two alternative hypotheses: (1) tree assemblages experience a taxonomic and functional homogenization (reduced β-diversity) between forest fragments and along forest edges, or alternatively, (2) these edge-affected forests show increased taxonomic and functional differentiation (increased β-diversity) when compared to forest interior (reference) stands...
September 2016: Ecological Applications: a Publication of the Ecological Society of America
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27648235/top-down-network-analysis-characterizes-hidden-termite-termite-interactions
#13
Colin Campbell, Laura Russo, Alessandra Marins, Og DeSouza, Karsten Schönrogge, David Mortensen, John Tooker, Réka Albert, Katriona Shea
The analysis of ecological networks is generally bottom-up, where networks are established by observing interactions between individuals. Emergent network properties have been indicated to reflect the dominant mode of interactions in communities that might be mutualistic (e.g., pollination) or antagonistic (e.g., host-parasitoid communities). Many ecological communities, however, comprise species interactions that are difficult to observe directly. Here, we propose that a comparison of the emergent properties from detail-rich reference communities with known modes of interaction can inform our understanding of detail-sparse focal communities...
September 2016: Ecology and Evolution
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27611694/cascading-effects-of-defaunation-on-the-coexistence-of-two-specialized-insect-seed-predators
#14
Guille Peguero, Helene C Muller-Landau, Patrick A Jansen, S Joseph Wright
: Identification of the mechanisms enabling stable coexistence of species with similar resource requirements is a central challenge in ecology. Such coexistence can be facilitated by species at higher trophic levels through complex multi-trophic interactions, a mechanism that could be compromised by ongoing defaunation. We investigated cascading effects of defaunation on Pachymerus cardo and Speciomerus giganteus, the specialized insect seed predators of the Neotropical palm Attalea butyracea, testing the hypothesis that vertebrate frugivores and granivores facilitate their coexistence...
September 9, 2016: Journal of Animal Ecology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27606619/agroforestry-practices-promote-biodiversity-and-natural-resource-diversity-in-atlantic-nicaragua
#15
Seeta A Sistla, Adam B Roddy, Nicholas E Williams, Daniel B Kramer, Kara Stevens, Steven D Allison
Tropical forest conversion to pasture, which drives greenhouse gas emissions, soil degradation, and biodiversity loss, remains a pressing socio-ecological challenge. This problem has spurred increased interest in the potential of small-scale agroforestry systems to couple sustainable agriculture with biodiversity conservation, particularly in rapidly developing areas of the tropics. In addition to providing natural resources (i.e. food, medicine, lumber), agroforestry systems have the potential to maintain higher levels of biodiversity and greater biomass than lower diversity crop or pasture systems...
2016: PloS One
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27573616/tree-species-effects-on-pathogen-suppressive-capacities-of-soil-bacteria-across-two-tropical-dry-forests-in-costa-rica
#16
Kristen Becklund, Jennifer Powers, Linda Kinkel
Antibiotic-producing bacteria in the genus Streptomyces can inhibit soil-borne plant pathogens, and have the potential to mediate the impacts of disease on plant communities. Little is known about how antibiotic production varies among soil communities in tropical forests, despite a long history of interest in the role of soil-borne pathogens in these ecosystems. Our objective was to determine how tree species and soils influence variation in antibiotic-mediated pathogen suppression among Streptomyces communities in two tropical dry forest sites (Santa Rosa and Palo Verde)...
November 2016: Oecologia
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27551373/leaf-litter-arthropod-responses-to-tropical-forest-restoration
#17
Rebecca J Cole, Karen D Holl, Rakan A Zahawi, Philipp Wickey, Alan R Townsend
Soil and litter arthropods represent a large proportion of tropical biodiversity and perform important ecosystem functions, but little is known about the efficacy of different tropical forest restoration strategies in facilitating their recovery in degraded habitats. We sampled arthropods in four 7- to 8-year-old restoration treatments and in nearby reference forests. Sampling was conducted during the wet and dry seasons using extractions from litter and pitfall samples. Restoration treatments were replicated in 50 × 50-m plots in four former pasture sites in southern Costa Rica: plantation - trees planted throughout the plot; applied nucleation/islands - trees planted in patches of different sizes; and natural regeneration - no tree planting...
August 2016: Ecology and Evolution
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27474399/plant-diversity-accurately-predicts-insect-diversity-in-two-tropical-landscapes
#18
Kai Zhang, Siliang Lin, Yinqiu Ji, Chenxue Yang, Xiaoyang Wang, Chunyan Yang, Hesheng Wang, Haisheng Jiang, Rhett D Harrison, Douglas W Yu
Plant diversity surely determines arthropod diversity, but only moderate correlations between arthropod and plant species richness had been observed until Basset et al. (Science, 338, 2012 and 1481) finally undertook an unprecedentedly comprehensive sampling of a tropical forest and demonstrated that plant species richness could indeed accurately predict arthropod species richness. We now require a high-throughput pipeline to operationalize this result so that we can (i) test competing explanations for tropical arthropod megadiversity, (ii) improve estimates of global eukaryotic species diversity, and (iii) use plant and arthropod communities as efficient proxies for each other, thus improving the efficiency of conservation planning and of detecting forest degradation and recovery...
September 2016: Molecular Ecology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27468277/ecology-of-nitrogen-fixing-nitrifying-and-denitrifying-microorganisms-in-tropical-forest-soils
#19
REVIEW
Silvia Pajares, Brendan J M Bohannan
Soil microorganisms play important roles in nitrogen cycling within forest ecosystems. Current research has revealed that a wider variety of microorganisms, with unexpected diversity in their functions and phylogenies, are involved in the nitrogen cycle than previously thought, including nitrogen-fixing bacteria, ammonia-oxidizing bacteria and archaea, heterotrophic nitrifying microorganisms, and anammox bacteria, as well as denitrifying bacteria, archaea, and fungi. However, the vast majority of this research has been focused in temperate regions, and relatively little is known regarding the ecology of nitrogen-cycling microorganisms within tropical and subtropical ecosystems...
2016: Frontiers in Microbiology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/27463359/variation-in-leaf-wettability-traits-along-a-tropical-montane-elevation-gradient
#20
Gregory R Goldsmith, Lisa Patrick Bentley, Alexander Shenkin, Norma Salinas, Benjamin Blonder, Roberta E Martin, Rosa Castro-Ccossco, Percy Chambi-Porroa, Sandra Diaz, Brian J Enquist, Gregory P Asner, Yadvinder Malhi
Leaf wetting is often considered to have negative effects on plant function, such that wet environments may select for leaves with certain leaf surface, morphological, and architectural traits that reduce leaf wettability. However, there is growing recognition that leaf wetting can have positive effects. We measured variation in two traits, leaf drip tips and leaf water repellency, in a series of nine tropical forest communities occurring along a 3300-m elevation gradient in southern Peru. To extend this climatic gradient, we also assembled published leaf water repellency values from 17 additional sites...
July 27, 2016: New Phytologist
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