Logging and soil nutrients independently explain plant trait expression in tropical forests

Sabine Both (Corresponding Author), Terhi Riutta, C. E. Timothy Paine, Dafydd M. O. Elias, Rudi Chino, Annuar Jain, David Johnson, Ully H. Kritzler, Marianne Kuntz, Noreen Majalap-Lee, Nora Mielke, Milenka X. Montoya Pillco, Nicholas J. Ostle, Yit A. Teh, Yadvinder Malhi, David F. R. P. Burslem

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

4 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Plant functional traits regulate ecosystem functions but little is known about how co-occurring gradients of land use and edaphic conditions influence their expression. We test how gradients of logging disturbance and soil properties relate to community-weighted mean traits in logged and old-growth tropical forests in Borneo.
•We studied 32 physical, chemical and physiological traits from 284 tree species in eight 1 ha plots and measured long-term soil nutrient supplies and plant-available nutrients.
•Logged plots had greater values for traits that drive carbon capture and growth, whilst old-growth forests had greater values for structural and persistence traits. Although disturbance was the primary driver of trait expression, soil nutrients explained a statistically independent axis of variation linked to leaf size and nutrient concentration. Soil characteristics influenced trait expression via nutrient availability, nutrient pools, and pH.
•Our finding, that traits have dissimilar responses to land use and soil resource availability, provides robust evidence for the need to consider the abiotic context of logging when predicting plant functional diversity across human-modified tropical forests. The detection of two independent axes was facilitated by the measurement of many more functional traits than have
been examined in previous studies.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1853-1865
Number of pages13
JournalNew Phytologist
Volume221
Issue number4
Early online date20 Sep 2018
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2019

Fingerprint

soil nutrients
tropical forests
logging
Soil
old-growth forests
Food
land use
soil resources
functional diversity
nutrients
Borneo
nutrient availability
soil properties
nutrient content
Growth
ecosystems
carbon
Ecosystem
Forests
leaves

Keywords

  • anthropogenic disturbance
  • Borneo
  • functional diversity
  • functional traits
  • and use
  • Rao’s Q
  • tropical rainforest
  • variance partitioning

Cite this

Logging and soil nutrients independently explain plant trait expression in tropical forests. / Both, Sabine (Corresponding Author); Riutta, Terhi; Paine, C. E. Timothy; Elias, Dafydd M. O.; Chino, Rudi; Jain, Annuar; Johnson, David; Kritzler, Ully H.; Kuntz, Marianne; Majalap-Lee, Noreen ; Mielke, Nora; Pillco, Milenka X. Montoya; Ostle, Nicholas J.; Teh, Yit A.; Malhi, Yadvinder ; Burslem, David F. R. P.

In: New Phytologist, Vol. 221, No. 4, 03.2019, p. 1853-1865.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Both, S, Riutta, T, Paine, CET, Elias, DMO, Chino, R, Jain, A, Johnson, D, Kritzler, UH, Kuntz, M, Majalap-Lee, N, Mielke, N, Pillco, MXM, Ostle, NJ, Teh, YA, Malhi, Y & Burslem, DFRP 2019, 'Logging and soil nutrients independently explain plant trait expression in tropical forests' New Phytologist, vol. 221, no. 4, pp. 1853-1865. https://doi.org/10.1111/nph.15444
Both, Sabine ; Riutta, Terhi ; Paine, C. E. Timothy ; Elias, Dafydd M. O. ; Chino, Rudi ; Jain, Annuar ; Johnson, David ; Kritzler, Ully H. ; Kuntz, Marianne ; Majalap-Lee, Noreen ; Mielke, Nora ; Pillco, Milenka X. Montoya ; Ostle, Nicholas J. ; Teh, Yit A. ; Malhi, Yadvinder ; Burslem, David F. R. P. / Logging and soil nutrients independently explain plant trait expression in tropical forests. In: New Phytologist. 2019 ; Vol. 221, No. 4. pp. 1853-1865.
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abstract = "Plant functional traits regulate ecosystem functions but little is known about how co-occurring gradients of land use and edaphic conditions influence their expression. We test how gradients of logging disturbance and soil properties relate to community-weighted mean traits in logged and old-growth tropical forests in Borneo. •We studied 32 physical, chemical and physiological traits from 284 tree species in eight 1 ha plots and measured long-term soil nutrient supplies and plant-available nutrients. •Logged plots had greater values for traits that drive carbon capture and growth, whilst old-growth forests had greater values for structural and persistence traits. Although disturbance was the primary driver of trait expression, soil nutrients explained a statistically independent axis of variation linked to leaf size and nutrient concentration. Soil characteristics influenced trait expression via nutrient availability, nutrient pools, and pH. •Our finding, that traits have dissimilar responses to land use and soil resource availability, provides robust evidence for the need to consider the abiotic context of logging when predicting plant functional diversity across human-modified tropical forests. The detection of two independent axes was facilitated by the measurement of many more functional traits than have been examined in previous studies.",
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author = "Sabine Both and Terhi Riutta and Paine, {C. E. Timothy} and Elias, {Dafydd M. O.} and Rudi Chino and Annuar Jain and David Johnson and Kritzler, {Ully H.} and Marianne Kuntz and Noreen Majalap-Lee and Nora Mielke and Pillco, {Milenka X. Montoya} and Ostle, {Nicholas J.} and Teh, {Yit A.} and Yadvinder Malhi and Burslem, {David F. R. P.}",
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T1 - Logging and soil nutrients independently explain plant trait expression in tropical forests

AU - Both, Sabine

AU - Riutta, Terhi

AU - Paine, C. E. Timothy

AU - Elias, Dafydd M. O.

AU - Chino, Rudi

AU - Jain, Annuar

AU - Johnson, David

AU - Kritzler, Ully H.

AU - Kuntz, Marianne

AU - Majalap-Lee, Noreen

AU - Mielke, Nora

AU - Pillco, Milenka X. Montoya

AU - Ostle, Nicholas J.

AU - Teh, Yit A.

AU - Malhi, Yadvinder

AU - Burslem, David F. R. P.

N1 - We acknowledge financial support by the UK Natural Environment Research Council (NE/K016253/1), with additional support through an ERC Advanced Investigator Award to YM (GEM-TRAIT; 321131). We are indebted to the Sabah Biodiversity Council, Yayasan Sabah, the Maliau Basin and Danum Valley Management Committees, the Institute for Tropical Biology and Conservation at the University of Malaysia, Sabah, and the Sabah Forest Research Centre at Sepilok. We thank Glen Reynolds and the South East Asia Rainforest Research Partnership (SEARRP). This study was supported by funding from the Sime Darby Foundation to the Stability of Altered Forest Ecosystems (SAFE) Project. This project would not have been possible without the indispensable support from dozens of research assistants in Sabah. The support from Laura Kruitbos, Unding Jami, Lisa P. Bentley, Benjamin Blonder, Puikiat Hoo, Palasiah Jotan, Alexander Shenkin and Chun Xing Wong is gratefully acknowledged. We thank Bernadus Bala Ola, Bill McDonald, Alexander Karolus and MinSheng Khoo for species identification. This publication is a contribution from the UK NERC-funded Biodiversity And Land-use Impacts on Tropical Ecosystem Function (BALI) consortium (http://bali.hmtf.info) through its Human Modified Tropical Forests thematic programme.

PY - 2019/3

Y1 - 2019/3

N2 - Plant functional traits regulate ecosystem functions but little is known about how co-occurring gradients of land use and edaphic conditions influence their expression. We test how gradients of logging disturbance and soil properties relate to community-weighted mean traits in logged and old-growth tropical forests in Borneo. •We studied 32 physical, chemical and physiological traits from 284 tree species in eight 1 ha plots and measured long-term soil nutrient supplies and plant-available nutrients. •Logged plots had greater values for traits that drive carbon capture and growth, whilst old-growth forests had greater values for structural and persistence traits. Although disturbance was the primary driver of trait expression, soil nutrients explained a statistically independent axis of variation linked to leaf size and nutrient concentration. Soil characteristics influenced trait expression via nutrient availability, nutrient pools, and pH. •Our finding, that traits have dissimilar responses to land use and soil resource availability, provides robust evidence for the need to consider the abiotic context of logging when predicting plant functional diversity across human-modified tropical forests. The detection of two independent axes was facilitated by the measurement of many more functional traits than have been examined in previous studies.

AB - Plant functional traits regulate ecosystem functions but little is known about how co-occurring gradients of land use and edaphic conditions influence their expression. We test how gradients of logging disturbance and soil properties relate to community-weighted mean traits in logged and old-growth tropical forests in Borneo. •We studied 32 physical, chemical and physiological traits from 284 tree species in eight 1 ha plots and measured long-term soil nutrient supplies and plant-available nutrients. •Logged plots had greater values for traits that drive carbon capture and growth, whilst old-growth forests had greater values for structural and persistence traits. Although disturbance was the primary driver of trait expression, soil nutrients explained a statistically independent axis of variation linked to leaf size and nutrient concentration. Soil characteristics influenced trait expression via nutrient availability, nutrient pools, and pH. •Our finding, that traits have dissimilar responses to land use and soil resource availability, provides robust evidence for the need to consider the abiotic context of logging when predicting plant functional diversity across human-modified tropical forests. The detection of two independent axes was facilitated by the measurement of many more functional traits than have been examined in previous studies.

KW - anthropogenic disturbance

KW - Borneo

KW - functional diversity

KW - functional traits

KW - and use

KW - Rao’s Q

KW - tropical rainforest

KW - variance partitioning

U2 - 10.1111/nph.15444

DO - 10.1111/nph.15444

M3 - Article

VL - 221

SP - 1853

EP - 1865

JO - New Phytologist

JF - New Phytologist

SN - 0028-646X

IS - 4

ER -