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Tree Species Composition and Harvest Intensity Affect Herbivore Density and Leaf Damage on Beech, Fagus sylvatica, in Different Landscape Contexts.

Mangels J, Blüthgen N, Frank K, Grassein F, Hilpert A, Mody K - PLoS ONE (2015)

Bottom Line: Changes in ecosystem processes such as herbivory depend on management intensity, and on regional environmental conditions and species pools.Whereas influences of specific forest management measures have already been addressed for different herbivore taxa on a local scale, studies considering effects of different aspects of forest management across different regions are rare.By linking quantitative data on arthropod herbivore abundance and herbivory with tree species composition and harvesting activity in a wide variety of beech forests, our study helps to better understand the influence of forest management on interactions between a naturally dominant deciduous forest tree and arthropod herbivores.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Ecological Networks, Department of Biology, Technische Universität Darmstadt, Darmstadt, Germany.

ABSTRACT
Most forests are exposed to anthropogenic management activities that affect tree species composition and natural ecosystem processes. Changes in ecosystem processes such as herbivory depend on management intensity, and on regional environmental conditions and species pools. Whereas influences of specific forest management measures have already been addressed for different herbivore taxa on a local scale, studies considering effects of different aspects of forest management across different regions are rare. We assessed the influence of tree species composition and intensity of harvesting activities on arthropod herbivores and herbivore-related damage to beech trees, Fagus sylvatica, in 48 forest plots in three regions of Germany. We found that herbivore abundance and damage to beech trees differed between regions and that - despite the regional differences - density of tree-associated arthropod taxa and herbivore damage were consistently affected by tree species composition and harvest intensity. Specifically, overall herbivore damage to beech trees increased with increasing dominance of beech trees - suggesting the action of associational resistance processes - and decreased with harvest intensity. The density of leaf chewers and mines was positively related to leaf damage, and several arthropod groups responded to beech dominance and harvest intensity. The distribution of damage patterns was consistent with a vertical shift of herbivores to higher crown layers during the season and with higher beech dominance. By linking quantitative data on arthropod herbivore abundance and herbivory with tree species composition and harvesting activity in a wide variety of beech forests, our study helps to better understand the influence of forest management on interactions between a naturally dominant deciduous forest tree and arthropod herbivores.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Influence of beech dominance and harvest intensity on leaf damage (residuals) of beech trees.Data were collected in May (a,b), July (c,d) and November (e,f) in the three regions Schorfheide (SCH), Hainich (HAI) and Schwäbische Alb (ALB).
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pone.0126140.g002: Influence of beech dominance and harvest intensity on leaf damage (residuals) of beech trees.Data were collected in May (a,b), July (c,d) and November (e,f) in the three regions Schorfheide (SCH), Hainich (HAI) and Schwäbische Alb (ALB).

Mentions: Leaf damage by chewing herbivores differed considerably between regions (Fig 1, Table 1), and both the proportion of F. sylvatica (beech dominance) and harvest intensity affected the amount of leaf damage and the density of different taxonomic groups of herbivores when the regional differences were accounted for (Fig 2, Table 1). Damage of live leaves was highest in ALB (mean ± SD: 5.3 ± 2.9% in May and 8.1 ± 3.5% in July) and significantly lower in the two other regions (1.0–1.8 ± 0.4–1.9%) (Fig 1, Table 1). Similar results were observed for herbivore damage estimated on fallen leaves, with higher damage in ALB (3.2 ± 0.7%) than in HAI (1.3 ± 0.5%) (Fig 1c, Table 1).


Tree Species Composition and Harvest Intensity Affect Herbivore Density and Leaf Damage on Beech, Fagus sylvatica, in Different Landscape Contexts.

Mangels J, Blüthgen N, Frank K, Grassein F, Hilpert A, Mody K - PLoS ONE (2015)

Influence of beech dominance and harvest intensity on leaf damage (residuals) of beech trees.Data were collected in May (a,b), July (c,d) and November (e,f) in the three regions Schorfheide (SCH), Hainich (HAI) and Schwäbische Alb (ALB).
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4418704&req=5

pone.0126140.g002: Influence of beech dominance and harvest intensity on leaf damage (residuals) of beech trees.Data were collected in May (a,b), July (c,d) and November (e,f) in the three regions Schorfheide (SCH), Hainich (HAI) and Schwäbische Alb (ALB).
Mentions: Leaf damage by chewing herbivores differed considerably between regions (Fig 1, Table 1), and both the proportion of F. sylvatica (beech dominance) and harvest intensity affected the amount of leaf damage and the density of different taxonomic groups of herbivores when the regional differences were accounted for (Fig 2, Table 1). Damage of live leaves was highest in ALB (mean ± SD: 5.3 ± 2.9% in May and 8.1 ± 3.5% in July) and significantly lower in the two other regions (1.0–1.8 ± 0.4–1.9%) (Fig 1, Table 1). Similar results were observed for herbivore damage estimated on fallen leaves, with higher damage in ALB (3.2 ± 0.7%) than in HAI (1.3 ± 0.5%) (Fig 1c, Table 1).

Bottom Line: Changes in ecosystem processes such as herbivory depend on management intensity, and on regional environmental conditions and species pools.Whereas influences of specific forest management measures have already been addressed for different herbivore taxa on a local scale, studies considering effects of different aspects of forest management across different regions are rare.By linking quantitative data on arthropod herbivore abundance and herbivory with tree species composition and harvesting activity in a wide variety of beech forests, our study helps to better understand the influence of forest management on interactions between a naturally dominant deciduous forest tree and arthropod herbivores.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Ecological Networks, Department of Biology, Technische Universität Darmstadt, Darmstadt, Germany.

ABSTRACT
Most forests are exposed to anthropogenic management activities that affect tree species composition and natural ecosystem processes. Changes in ecosystem processes such as herbivory depend on management intensity, and on regional environmental conditions and species pools. Whereas influences of specific forest management measures have already been addressed for different herbivore taxa on a local scale, studies considering effects of different aspects of forest management across different regions are rare. We assessed the influence of tree species composition and intensity of harvesting activities on arthropod herbivores and herbivore-related damage to beech trees, Fagus sylvatica, in 48 forest plots in three regions of Germany. We found that herbivore abundance and damage to beech trees differed between regions and that - despite the regional differences - density of tree-associated arthropod taxa and herbivore damage were consistently affected by tree species composition and harvest intensity. Specifically, overall herbivore damage to beech trees increased with increasing dominance of beech trees - suggesting the action of associational resistance processes - and decreased with harvest intensity. The density of leaf chewers and mines was positively related to leaf damage, and several arthropod groups responded to beech dominance and harvest intensity. The distribution of damage patterns was consistent with a vertical shift of herbivores to higher crown layers during the season and with higher beech dominance. By linking quantitative data on arthropod herbivore abundance and herbivory with tree species composition and harvesting activity in a wide variety of beech forests, our study helps to better understand the influence of forest management on interactions between a naturally dominant deciduous forest tree and arthropod herbivores.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus