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Decay and nutrient dynamics of coarse woody debris in the Qinling Mountains, China

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

ABSTRACT

As an ecological unit, coarse woody debris (CWD) plays an essential role in productivity, nutrient cycling, carbon sequestration, community regeneration and biodiversity. However, thus far, the information on quantification the decomposition and nutrient content of CWD in forest ecosystems remains considerably limited. In this study, we conducted a long-term (1996–2013) study on decay and nutrient dynamics of CWD for evaluating accurately the ecological value of CWD on the Huoditang Experimental Forest Farm in the Qinling Mountains, China. The results demonstrated that there was a strong correlation between forest biomass and CWD mass. The single exponential decay model well fit the CWD density loss at this site, and as the CWD decomposed, the CWD density decreased significantly. Annual temperature and precipitation were all significantly correlated with the annual mass decay rate. The K contents and the C/N ratio of the CWD decreased as the CWD decayed, but the C, N, P, Ca and Mg contents increased. We observed a significant CWD decay effect on the soil C, N and Mg contents, especially the soil C content. The soil N, P, K, Ca and Mg contents exhibited large fluctuations, but the variation had no obvious regularity and changed with different decay times. The results showed that CWD was a critical component of nutrient cycling in forest ecosystems. Further research is needed to determine the effect of diameter, plant tissue components, secondary wood compounds, and decomposer organisms on the CWD decay rates in the Qinling Mountains, which will be beneficial to clarifying the role of CWD in carbon cycles of forest ecosystems.

No MeSH data available.


The forest biomass and the percentage of CWD to the forest biomass (the mass of living trees, shrubs, herbs, litter and CWD) in the P. armandi and Q. aliena var. acuteserrata forests from 1997–2013.The forest biomass data sources are Chen and Peng [60] and the unpublished Qinling long-term ecological monitoring database. Errors bars are based on plot as experimental unit (N = 3).
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pone.0175203.g003: The forest biomass and the percentage of CWD to the forest biomass (the mass of living trees, shrubs, herbs, litter and CWD) in the P. armandi and Q. aliena var. acuteserrata forests from 1997–2013.The forest biomass data sources are Chen and Peng [60] and the unpublished Qinling long-term ecological monitoring database. Errors bars are based on plot as experimental unit (N = 3).

Mentions: The average annual BCWD in the P. armandi forest (9.78±1.82 t·ha-1) was significantly higher than that in the Q. aliena var. acuteserrata forest (8.23±1.63 t·ha-1) (P<0.0001) from 1996–2013 (Fig 3), but there was no significant difference between average annual ICWD in the P. armandi forest (0.80±0.67 t·ha-1) and that in the Q. aliena var. acuteserrata forest (0.89±0.78 t·ha-1) (Fig 4, P = 0.53). There were obvious variations in the annual ICWD in the P. armandi and Q. aliena var. acuteserrata forests, but there was no obvious regularity. The average annual forest biomass in the Q. aliena var. acuteserrata forest (218.28±34.45 t·ha-1) was significantly higher than that in the P. armandi forest (149.24±16.91 t·ha-1) (P<0.0001), and the annual forest biomass of both forests increased linearly from 1996–2013. The average annual biomass increment in the Q. aliena var. acuteserrata forest (6.34±1.07 t·ha-1) was significantly higher than that in the P. armandi forest (3.27±0.99 t·ha-1) (P<0.0001), but the average percentage of CWD in the P. armandi forest (6.51%±0.70%) was significantly higher than that in the Q. aliena var. acuteserrata forest (3.46%±0.32%) (P<0.0001). The BCWD increased significantly in the P. armandi and Q. aliena var. acuteserrata forests with an increase in the forest biomass (P<0.0001). There was a strong correlation between the forest biomass and the BCWD; the Q. aliena var. acuteserrata forest exhibited a slightly stronger correlation (r = 0.92) compared with the P. armandi forest (r = 0.90).


Decay and nutrient dynamics of coarse woody debris in the Qinling Mountains, China
The forest biomass and the percentage of CWD to the forest biomass (the mass of living trees, shrubs, herbs, litter and CWD) in the P. armandi and Q. aliena var. acuteserrata forests from 1997–2013.The forest biomass data sources are Chen and Peng [60] and the unpublished Qinling long-term ecological monitoring database. Errors bars are based on plot as experimental unit (N = 3).
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

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Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC5383274&req=5

pone.0175203.g003: The forest biomass and the percentage of CWD to the forest biomass (the mass of living trees, shrubs, herbs, litter and CWD) in the P. armandi and Q. aliena var. acuteserrata forests from 1997–2013.The forest biomass data sources are Chen and Peng [60] and the unpublished Qinling long-term ecological monitoring database. Errors bars are based on plot as experimental unit (N = 3).
Mentions: The average annual BCWD in the P. armandi forest (9.78±1.82 t·ha-1) was significantly higher than that in the Q. aliena var. acuteserrata forest (8.23±1.63 t·ha-1) (P<0.0001) from 1996–2013 (Fig 3), but there was no significant difference between average annual ICWD in the P. armandi forest (0.80±0.67 t·ha-1) and that in the Q. aliena var. acuteserrata forest (0.89±0.78 t·ha-1) (Fig 4, P = 0.53). There were obvious variations in the annual ICWD in the P. armandi and Q. aliena var. acuteserrata forests, but there was no obvious regularity. The average annual forest biomass in the Q. aliena var. acuteserrata forest (218.28±34.45 t·ha-1) was significantly higher than that in the P. armandi forest (149.24±16.91 t·ha-1) (P<0.0001), and the annual forest biomass of both forests increased linearly from 1996–2013. The average annual biomass increment in the Q. aliena var. acuteserrata forest (6.34±1.07 t·ha-1) was significantly higher than that in the P. armandi forest (3.27±0.99 t·ha-1) (P<0.0001), but the average percentage of CWD in the P. armandi forest (6.51%±0.70%) was significantly higher than that in the Q. aliena var. acuteserrata forest (3.46%±0.32%) (P<0.0001). The BCWD increased significantly in the P. armandi and Q. aliena var. acuteserrata forests with an increase in the forest biomass (P<0.0001). There was a strong correlation between the forest biomass and the BCWD; the Q. aliena var. acuteserrata forest exhibited a slightly stronger correlation (r = 0.92) compared with the P. armandi forest (r = 0.90).

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

ABSTRACT

As an ecological unit, coarse woody debris (CWD) plays an essential role in productivity, nutrient cycling, carbon sequestration, community regeneration and biodiversity. However, thus far, the information on quantification the decomposition and nutrient content of CWD in forest ecosystems remains considerably limited. In this study, we conducted a long-term (1996&ndash;2013) study on decay and nutrient dynamics of CWD for evaluating accurately the ecological value of CWD on the Huoditang Experimental Forest Farm in the Qinling Mountains, China. The results demonstrated that there was a strong correlation between forest biomass and CWD mass. The single exponential decay model well fit the CWD density loss at this site, and as the CWD decomposed, the CWD density decreased significantly. Annual temperature and precipitation were all significantly correlated with the annual mass decay rate. The K contents and the C/N ratio of the CWD decreased as the CWD decayed, but the C, N, P, Ca and Mg contents increased. We observed a significant CWD decay effect on the soil C, N and Mg contents, especially the soil C content. The soil N, P, K, Ca and Mg contents exhibited large fluctuations, but the variation had no obvious regularity and changed with different decay times. The results showed that CWD was a critical component of nutrient cycling in forest ecosystems. Further research is needed to determine the effect of diameter, plant tissue components, secondary wood compounds, and decomposer organisms on the CWD decay rates in the Qinling Mountains, which will be beneficial to clarifying the role of CWD in carbon cycles of forest ecosystems.

No MeSH data available.