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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.


Related in: MedlinePlus

The contents of the soil chemical elements in the three soil layers under the P. armandi CWD at different decay times.Errors bars are based on plot as experimental unit (N = 3).
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pone.0175203.g009: The contents of the soil chemical elements in the three soil layers under the P. armandi CWD at different decay times.Errors bars are based on plot as experimental unit (N = 3).

Mentions: As the soil depth increased, the soil C and N contents under the P. armandi and Q. aliena var. acuteserrata CWD decreased significantly at all decay times, while the soil Mg content under the P. armandi CWD was similar (Figs 9 and 10, P<0.05). As the CWD decomposed, the C and N contents in the three soil layers under the P. armandi CWD and the soil C content under the Q. aliena var. acuteserrata CWD increased. In the 0–10 cm soil layer in particular, these element contents exhibited significantly higher accumulation as the CWD decayed. As the CWD decomposed, there were significant fluctuations in the P, K, Ca and Mg contents measured in the three soil layers under the P. armandi CWD and in the soil N, P, K, Ca, Mg contents under the Q. aliena var. acuteserrata CWD, but there was no obvious regularity, and the fluctuations varied with different decay times.


Decay and nutrient dynamics of coarse woody debris in the Qinling Mountains, China
The contents of the soil chemical elements in the three soil layers under the P. armandi CWD at different decay times.Errors bars are based on plot as experimental unit (N = 3).
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

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

pone.0175203.g009: The contents of the soil chemical elements in the three soil layers under the P. armandi CWD at different decay times.Errors bars are based on plot as experimental unit (N = 3).
Mentions: As the soil depth increased, the soil C and N contents under the P. armandi and Q. aliena var. acuteserrata CWD decreased significantly at all decay times, while the soil Mg content under the P. armandi CWD was similar (Figs 9 and 10, P<0.05). As the CWD decomposed, the C and N contents in the three soil layers under the P. armandi CWD and the soil C content under the Q. aliena var. acuteserrata CWD increased. In the 0–10 cm soil layer in particular, these element contents exhibited significantly higher accumulation as the CWD decayed. As the CWD decomposed, there were significant fluctuations in the P, K, Ca and Mg contents measured in the three soil layers under the P. armandi CWD and in the soil N, P, K, Ca, Mg contents under the Q. aliena var. acuteserrata CWD, but there was no obvious regularity, and the fluctuations varied with different decay times.

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.


Related in: MedlinePlus