Drought Effects in Climate Change Manipulation Experiments: Quantifying the Influence of Ambient Weather Conditions and Rain-out Shelter Artifacts
- 1.1k Downloads
Extreme drought events challenge ecosystem functioning. Ecological response to drought is studied worldwide in a growing number of field experiments by rain-out shelters. Yet, few meta-analyses face severe challenges in the comparability of studies. This is partly because build-up of drought stress in rain-out shelters is modified by ambient weather conditions. Rain-out shelters can further create confounding effects (radiation, temperature), which may influence plant responses. Yet, a quantification of ecophysiological effects within rain-out shelters under opposing ambient weather conditions and of microclimatological artifacts is missing. Here, we examined phytometers—standardized potted individuals of Plantago lanceolata—under rain-out shelter, rain-out shelter artifact control, and ambient control during opposing outside microclimatological conditions. Furthermore, we tested for artifacts of rain-out shelters on plant responses in a long-term semi-natural grassland experiment. Phytometer plants below the rain-out shelters showed lower stomatal conductance, maximum quantum efficiency, and leaf water potential during warm ambient conditions with high evaporative demand than during cold conditions with low evaporative demand. Plant performance was highly correlated with ambient temperature and vapor pressure deficit (VPD). Rain-out shelter artifacts on plant responses were nonsignificant. Rain-out shelters remain a viable tool for studying ecosystem responses to drought. However, drought manipulations using rain-out shelters are strongly modified by ambient weather conditions. Attributing the results from rain-out shelter studies to drought effects and comparability among studies and study years therefore requires the quantification of the realized drought stress, for example, by relating ecosystem responses to measured microclimatological parameters such as air temperature and VPD.
Keywordsprecipitation manipulation experiment experimental design artifact control extreme weather event EVENT experiment microclimate pulse experiment drought
Mohammed A.S. Arfin Khan and F. Sultana were financially supported by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) while at the Department of Disturbance Ecology, University of Bayreuth. The financial support for the set-up of the EVENT II experiment was provided by a research grant of the German Science Foundation (DFG JE 282/6-1). We thank the Ecological-Botanical Gardens for providing the required experimental sites.
- Babel W, Schaller C, Eigenmann R, Foken T, Hübner J, Jentsch A, Kreyling J, Sultana F, Zhao P. 2013. Documentation of the EVENT-HMMS Experiment 2012—Microclimatological effects of rain-out shelters within EVENT II. Arbeitsergebnisse, Universität Bayreuth, Abteilung Mikrometeorologie, ISSN 1614-8916. 55:43 pp.Google Scholar
- Fraser LH, Henry HAL, Carlyle D, White S, Beierkuhnlein C, Cahill J, Casper BB, Cleland EE, Collins SL, Dukes JS, Knapp AK, Lind E, Long R, Smith MD, Sternberg M, Turkington R. 2013. Coordinated distributed experiments: an emerging tool for testing global hypotheses in ecology and environmental science. Front Ecol Environ 11:147–55.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- IPCC. 2012. Summary for Policymakers. In: Field CB, Barros V, Stocker TF et al., Eds. Managing the risks of extreme events and disasters to advance climate change adaptation: A Special Report of Working Groups I and II of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. p 1–20.Google Scholar
- Jentsch A, Beierkuhnlein C. 2010. Simulating the future—responses of ecosystems, key species and European provenances to expected climatic trends and events. Nova Acta Leopoldina 112:89–98.Google Scholar
- Jentsch A, Kreyling J, Elmer M, Gellesch E, Glaser B, Grant K, Hein R, Lara M, Mirzae H, Nadler SE, Nagy L, Otieno D, Pritsch K, Rascher U, Schaedler M, Schloter M, Singh BK, Stadler J, Walter J, Wellstein C, Woellecke J, Beierkuhnlein C. 2011. Climate extremes initiate ecosystem-regulating functions while maintaining productivity. J Ecol 99:689–702.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Lüers J, Soldner M, Olesch J, Foken T. 2014. 160 Jahre Bayreuther Klimazeitreihe, Homogenisierung der Bayreuther Lufttemperatur- und Niederschlagsdaten. Arbeitsergebnisse Universität Bayreuth, Abteilung Mikrometeorologie, ISSN 1614-8916. 56:52 pp.Google Scholar
- R Core Team. 2014. R: A Language and Environment for Statistical Computing. R version 3.1.2. Vienna, Austria: R Foundation for Statistical Computing. ISBN 3-900051-07-0, http://www.R-project.org.
- Seipel T, Kueffer C, Rew LJ, Daehler CC, Pauchard A, Naylor BJ, Alexander JM, Edwards PJ, Parks CG, Arevalo JR, Cavieres LA, Dietz H, Jakobs G, McDougall K, Otto R, Walsh N. 2012. Processes at multiple scales affect richness and similarity of non-native plant species in mountains around the world. Global Ecol Biogeogr 21:236–46.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Smith MD, Rodgers VL, Brzostek E, Kulmatiski A, Avolio ML, Koerner SE, Hoover D, Grant K, Jentsch A, Fatichi S, Niyogi D. 2014. Towards a better integration of biogeochemical and ecological data from precipitation manipulation experiments into land surface models. Rev Geophys. doi: 10.1002/2014RG000458.Google Scholar
- Vicca S, Bahn M, Estiarte M, van Loon EE, Vargas R, Alberti G, Ambus P, Arain MA, Beier C, Bentley LP, Borken W, Buchmann N, Collins SL, de Dato G, Dukes JS, Escolar C, Fay P, Guidolotti G, Hanson PJ, Kahmen A, Kroel-Dulay G, Ladreiter-Knauss T, Larsen KS, Lellei-Kovacs E, Lebrija-Trejos E, Maestre FT, Marhan S, Marshall M, Meir P, Miao Y, Muhr J, Niklaus PA, Ogaya R, Penuelas J, Poll C, Rustad LE, Savage K, Schindlbacher A, Schmidt IK, Smith AR, Sotta ED, Suseela V, Tietema A, van Gestel N, van Straaten O, Wan S, Weber U, Janssens IA. 2014. Can current moisture responses predict soil CO2 efflux under altered precipitation regimes? A synthesis of manipulation experiments. Biogeosciences 11:2991–3013.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Vicca S, Gilgen AK, Serrano MC, Dreesen FE, Dukes JS, Estiarte M, Gray SB, Guidolotti G, Hoeppner SS, Leakey ADB, Ogaya R, Ort DR, Ostrogovic MZ, Rambal S, Sardans J, Schmitt M, Siebers M, van der Linden L, van Straaten O, Granier A. 2012. Urgent need for a common metric to make precipitation manipulation experiments comparable. New Phytol 195:518–22.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar