Soil and climate drive floristic composition in tropical forests: a literature review
EntityUAM. Departamento de Biología
10.3389/fevo.2022.866905Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution 10 (2022): 866905
ProjectGobierno de España. PID2019-105064GB-I00; Gobierno de España. CGL2016-75414-P
SubjectsAmazonia; Floristics; Tropical Rain Forest; Biología y Biomedicina / Biología
Rights© 2022 Bañares-de-Dios, Macía, de Carvalho, Arellano and Cayuela
Esta obra está bajo una Licencia Creative Commons Atribución 4.0 Internacional.
A vast literature indicates that environment plays a paramount role in determining floristic composition in tropical forests. However, it remains unclear which are the most important environmental factors and their relative effect across different spatial scales, plant life forms or forest types. This study reviews the state of knowledge on the effect of soil and climate on floristic composition in tropical forests. From 137 publications, we collated information regarding: (1) spatial scale, continent, country, life form, and forest type; (2) proportion of variance in floristic composition explained by soil and climatic variables and how it varies across spatial scales; and (3) which soil and climate variables had a significant relationship on community composition for each life form and forest type. Most studies were conducted at landscape spatial scales (67%) and mainly in South America (74%), particularly in Brazil (40%). Studies majorly focused on trees (82%) and on lowland evergreen tropical forests (74%). Both soil and climate variables explained in average the same amount (14% each) of the variation observed in plant species composition, although soils appear to exert a stronger influence at smaller spatial scales while climate effect increases toward larger ones. Temperature, precipitation, seasonality, soil moisture, soil texture, aluminum, and base cations—calcium and magnesium–and their related variables (e.g., cation exchange capacity, or base saturation) were frequently reported as important variables in structuring plant communities. Yet there was variability when comparing different life forms or forest types, which renders clues about certain ecological peculiarities. We recommend the use of standardized protocols for collecting environmental and floristic information in as much as possible, and to fill knowledge gaps in certain geographic regions. These actions will be especially beneficial to share uniform data between researchers, conduct analysis at large spatial scales and get a better understanding of the link between soils and climate gradients and plant strategies, which is key to propose better conservation policies under the light of global change
Google Scholar:Bañares-de-Dios, Guillermo - Macía Barco, Manuel Juan - Cayuela, Luis - Carvalho, Gabriel Martins de - Arellano, Gabriel - Cayuela, Luis
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