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Variability in the contribution of different life stages to population growth as a key factor in the invasion success of Pinus strobus.

Münzbergová Z, Hadincová V, Wild J, Kindlmannová J - PLoS ONE (2013)

Bottom Line: In agreement with previous studies on the population dynamics of long-lived perennials, our results show that the survival of the largest trees exhibits the highest elasticity in all of the studied habitats.The results indicate that P. strobus exhibits different growth strategies in different habitats that result in similar population growth rates.In all of the investigated habitats, the population growth rates are above 1, indicating that the population of the species is still increasing and has the ability to spread and occupy a wide range of habitats.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Institute of Botany, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Průhonice, Czech Republic. zuzmun@natur.cuni.cz

ABSTRACT

Background: Despite the increasing number of studies attempting to model population growth in various organisms, we still know relatively little about the population dynamics of long-lived species that reproduce only in the later stages of their life cycle, such as trees. Predictions of the dynamics of these species are, however, urgently needed for planning management actions when species are either endangered or invasive. In long-lived species, a single management intervention may have consequences for several decades, and detailed knowledge of long-term performance can therefore elucidate possible outcomes during the management planning phase.

Methodology and principal findings: We studied the population dynamics of an invasive tree species, Pinus strobus, in three habitat types represented by their position along the elevation gradient occupied by the species. In agreement with previous studies on the population dynamics of long-lived perennials, our results show that the survival of the largest trees exhibits the highest elasticity in all of the studied habitats. In contrast, life table response experiments (LTRE) analysis showed that different stages contribute the most to population growth rates in different habitats, with generative reproduction being more important in lower slopes and valley bottoms and survival being more important on rock tops and upper slopes.

Conclusions: The results indicate that P. strobus exhibits different growth strategies in different habitats that result in similar population growth rates. We propose that this plasticity in growth strategies is a key factor in the invasion success of the white pine. In all of the investigated habitats, the population growth rates are above 1, indicating that the population of the species is still increasing and has the ability to spread and occupy a wide range of habitats.

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Population growth rates in the 3 habitat types.Population growth rates in the 3 habitat types (position on the slope – upper, middle or lower) over 11 years (1997–2007). The mortality, natality and growth and survival of trees up to 0.5 m are kept constant in these matrices. Mean ±95% confidence interval.
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pone-0056953-g004: Population growth rates in the 3 habitat types.Population growth rates in the 3 habitat types (position on the slope – upper, middle or lower) over 11 years (1997–2007). The mortality, natality and growth and survival of trees up to 0.5 m are kept constant in these matrices. Mean ±95% confidence interval.

Mentions: The population growth rates based on single transition matrices (Table S1) constructed separately for the three transition intervals for each habitat type ranged between 1.005 and 1.022, with largely overlapping confidence intervals (Fig. 3). Similar patterns could be observed in the matrices from the 11 transition intervals (Fig. 4, between 1.01 and 1.042). In this case, there was a visible trend of declining population growth rates over time, corresponding to the decline in the lengths of the increments. The lowest and most variable population growth rate was observed at the upper position.


Variability in the contribution of different life stages to population growth as a key factor in the invasion success of Pinus strobus.

Münzbergová Z, Hadincová V, Wild J, Kindlmannová J - PLoS ONE (2013)

Population growth rates in the 3 habitat types.Population growth rates in the 3 habitat types (position on the slope – upper, middle or lower) over 11 years (1997–2007). The mortality, natality and growth and survival of trees up to 0.5 m are kept constant in these matrices. Mean ±95% confidence interval.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3585251&req=5

pone-0056953-g004: Population growth rates in the 3 habitat types.Population growth rates in the 3 habitat types (position on the slope – upper, middle or lower) over 11 years (1997–2007). The mortality, natality and growth and survival of trees up to 0.5 m are kept constant in these matrices. Mean ±95% confidence interval.
Mentions: The population growth rates based on single transition matrices (Table S1) constructed separately for the three transition intervals for each habitat type ranged between 1.005 and 1.022, with largely overlapping confidence intervals (Fig. 3). Similar patterns could be observed in the matrices from the 11 transition intervals (Fig. 4, between 1.01 and 1.042). In this case, there was a visible trend of declining population growth rates over time, corresponding to the decline in the lengths of the increments. The lowest and most variable population growth rate was observed at the upper position.

Bottom Line: In agreement with previous studies on the population dynamics of long-lived perennials, our results show that the survival of the largest trees exhibits the highest elasticity in all of the studied habitats.The results indicate that P. strobus exhibits different growth strategies in different habitats that result in similar population growth rates.In all of the investigated habitats, the population growth rates are above 1, indicating that the population of the species is still increasing and has the ability to spread and occupy a wide range of habitats.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Institute of Botany, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Průhonice, Czech Republic. zuzmun@natur.cuni.cz

ABSTRACT

Background: Despite the increasing number of studies attempting to model population growth in various organisms, we still know relatively little about the population dynamics of long-lived species that reproduce only in the later stages of their life cycle, such as trees. Predictions of the dynamics of these species are, however, urgently needed for planning management actions when species are either endangered or invasive. In long-lived species, a single management intervention may have consequences for several decades, and detailed knowledge of long-term performance can therefore elucidate possible outcomes during the management planning phase.

Methodology and principal findings: We studied the population dynamics of an invasive tree species, Pinus strobus, in three habitat types represented by their position along the elevation gradient occupied by the species. In agreement with previous studies on the population dynamics of long-lived perennials, our results show that the survival of the largest trees exhibits the highest elasticity in all of the studied habitats. In contrast, life table response experiments (LTRE) analysis showed that different stages contribute the most to population growth rates in different habitats, with generative reproduction being more important in lower slopes and valley bottoms and survival being more important on rock tops and upper slopes.

Conclusions: The results indicate that P. strobus exhibits different growth strategies in different habitats that result in similar population growth rates. We propose that this plasticity in growth strategies is a key factor in the invasion success of the white pine. In all of the investigated habitats, the population growth rates are above 1, indicating that the population of the species is still increasing and has the ability to spread and occupy a wide range of habitats.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus