Spatial scale changes the relationship between beta diversity, species richness and latitude

Rachakonda Sreekar, Masatoshi Katabuchi, Akihiro Nakamura, Richard T. Corlett, J. W.Ferry Slik, Christine Fletcher, Fangliang He, George D. Weiblen, Guochun Shen, Han Xu, I. Fang Sun, Ke Cao, Keping Ma, Li Wan Chang, Min Cao, Mingxi Jiang, I. A.U.Nimal Gunatilleke, Perry Ong, Sandra Yap, C. V.Savitri GunatillekeVojtech Novotny, Warren Y. Brockelman, Wusheng Xiang, Xiangcheng Mi, Xiankun Li, Xihua Wang, Xiujuan Qiao, Yide Li, Sylvester Tan, Richard Condit, Rhett D. Harrison, Lian Pin Koh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations

Abstract

The relationship between β-diversity and latitude still remains to be a core question in ecology because of the lack of consensus between studies. One hypothesis for the lack of consensus between studies is that spatial scale changes the relationship between latitude and β-diversity. Here, we test this hypothesis using tree data from 15 large-scale forest plots (greater than or equal to 15 ha, diameter at breast height ≥1 cm) across a latitudinal gradient (3-30°) in the Asia-Pacific region. We found that the observed β-diversity decreased with increasing latitude when sampling local tree communities at small spatial scale (grain size ≤0.1 ha), but the observed β-diversity did not change with latitude when sampling at large spatial scales (greater than or equal to 0.25 ha). Differences in latitudinal β-diversity gradients across spatial scales were caused by pooled species richness (γ-diversity), which influenced observed β-diversity values at small spatial scales, but not at large spatial scales. Therefore, spatial scale changes the relationship between β-diversity, γ-diversity and latitude, and improving sample representativeness avoids the γ-dependence of β-diversity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number181168
JournalRoyal Society Open Science
Volume5
Issue number9
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2018

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Ethics. Field efforts in Fushan and Lienhuachih were supported by the Taiwan Forest Bureau and Taiwan Forest Research Institute. Field efforts in Mo Singto were supported by the Thai National Park, Wildlife and Plant Conservation Department. Field efforts in Sri Lanka were supported by the Sri Lanka Forest Department. Field efforts in Wanang were supported by the government of Papua New Guinea and the customary landowners of Wanang. Field efforts in Lambir were supported by the Forest Department of Sarawak, Malaysia. Data accessibility. Data are available from the electronic supplementary material, appendix S1, and available via CTFS-ForestGEO website at http://www.forestgeo.si.edu and CForBio website at http://cfbiodiv.org. Authors’ contributions. R.S., M.K., A.N., R.T.C., J.W.F.S., R.H.D. and L.P.K. designed the study; C.F., F.H., G.D.W., G.S., H.X., I.-F.S., K.C., K.M., L.-W.C., M.C., M.J., I.A.U.N.G., P.O., R.C., S.Y., S.T., C.V.S.G., V.N., W.Y.B., W.X., X.M., X.L., X.W., X.Q. and Y.L. acquired tree data; R.S. and M.K. analysed the data; R.S. drafted the article. All authors gave final approval for publication. Competing interests. The authors have no competing interests. Funding. Financial support for the Tiantongshan plot came from the National Natural Science Foundation of China (31470487 to G.S., 31210103920 to X.W.). Financial support for the Nonggang plot came from the National Natural Science Foundation of China (31660130 and 31760131). Financial support for Sinharaja plot came from the University of Peradeniya, Center for Tropical Forest Science of the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University, USA, with supplementary funding from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the National Institute for Environmental Science, Japan, and the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research-UFZ, Germany. Financial support for the Lambir plot came from the Forest Department of Sarawak, Malaysia, the Center for Tropical Forest Science of the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, the

Funding Information:
Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University, USA (under NSF awards DEB-9107247 and DEB-9629601), and Osaka City, Ehime and Kyoto Universities, Japan. Financial support for the Barro Colorado Island (BCI) plot came from numerous organizations, principally the US National Science Foundation. Financial support for the Heishiding plot came from Sun Yat-sen University in Guangzhou, China. Financial support for the Wanang plot came from the Czech Academy of Sciences (grant no. GACR 16-18022S) and the University of Minnesota supported by NSF DEB-1027297 and NIH ICBG 5UO1TW006671. Acknowledgements. Adelaide Scholarship International and Australian Research Council supported R.S. and L.P.K., respectively. We thank Robert Colwell, Stuart Davies, Akira Itoh, David Burslem, Paulo A. V. Borges and three anonymous reviewers for helpful suggestions. We thank the many people who contributed to the long-term ecological plots in Asia-Pacific. The Lambir 52-ha Long-Term Ecological Research Project is a collaborative project of the Forest Department of Sarawak, Malaysia, the Center for Tropical Forest Science of the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University, USA and Kyoto Universities, Japan. The Barro Colorado Island (BCI) forest dynamics research project was founded by S.P. Hubbell and R.B. Foster and is now managed by R. Condit, S. Lao, and R. Perez under the Center for Tropical Forest Science and the Smithsonian Tropical Research in Panama. We acknowledge the Sarawak Forest Department for supporting and maintaining the project in Lambir Hills National Park. We thank Shameema Esufali for helping with the Sinharaja plot data. The PIs of Sinharaja plot (I.A.U.N.G and C.V.S.G) gratefully acknowledge the Forest Department and the Post-Graduate Institute of Science at the University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka for supporting this project, and the local field and laboratory staff who tirelessly contributed in the repeated censuses of this plot. The 50-ha Wanang Forest Dynamics Plot is a collaborative project of the New Guinea Binatang Research Center, the Center for Tropical Forest Science of the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, the Forest Research Institute of Papua New Guinea, the Czech Academy of Sciences and the University of Minnesota. We acknowledge the government of Papua New Guinea and the customary landowners of Wanang for supporting and maintaining the plot. The Mo-Singto plot was supported by the Thai National Park, Wildlife and Plant Conservation Department, Thai Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, National Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (Thailand) and National Science and Technology Development Agency (Thailand). The Lienhuachih plot was supported by the Taiwan Forestry Research Institute, Taiwan Forestry Bureau, Taiwan Academy of Ecology, Tunghai University (Taiwan), and the Center for Tropical Forest Science of the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute. The Fushan plot was supported by the Taiwan Forestry Bureau, Taiwan Forestry Research Institute, Tunghai University (Taiwan), Institute of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, National Taiwan University, and the Center for Tropical Forest Science of the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (USA).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 The Authors.

Keywords

  • ForestGEO
  • null model
  • pairwise dissimilarity
  • tree diversity
  • β-deviation

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