PS 8-74 - Separating the effects of dispersal limitation and habitat heterogeneity on spatial distributions of species in tree communities

Monday, August 8, 2011
Exhibit Hall 3, Austin Convention Center
Guochun Shen1, Fangliang He2, Rasmus Waagepetersen3, Zueng-Sang Chen4, Ping Ding5, Zhanqing Hao6, I-Fang Sun7 and Mingjian Yu5, (1)College of Life Sciences, Sun Yat-sen University, GuangZhou, China, (2)School of Life Sciences, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou, China, (3)Department of Mathematical Sciences, Aalborg University, Aalborg, Denmark, (4)Department of Agricultural Chemistry, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan, (5)College of Life Sciences, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, China, (6)Institute of Applied Ecology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shenyang, China, (7)Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Studies, National Dong Hwa University, Hualien, Taiwan

No understanding of species coexistence is possible without explicit consideration of spatial distribution of species. Here, we evaluated four competing theories about the relative importance of two major spatial constructing processes, habitat heterogeneity and dispersal limitation, to the distributions of over 275 tree species in three large scale stem-mapped plots in tropical, subtropical and temperate forests. We developed a new method based on spatial point pattern modeling to decompose variance of species distribution into contributions of the two major processes.


Our results show that the effects of habitat heterogeneity and dispersal limitation are much more pervasive among species than previously presented for each of the plots, and dispersal limitation consistently dominates over habitat heterogeneity in forming spatial distribution of most species across all studied plots.

Copyright © . All rights reserved.
Banner photo by Flickr user greg westfall.