Ecological Research

, Volume 33, Issue 2, pp 393–402 | Cite as

Imposed drought effects on carbon storage of moso bamboo ecosystem in southeast China: results from a field experiment

  • Xiaogai Ge
  • Benzhi Zhou
  • Xiaoming Wang
  • Qian Li
  • Yonghui Cao
  • Lianhong Gu
Special Feature Climate Change and Biodiversity Conservation in East Asia as a token of memory for the 7th EAFES in Daegu, Korea


Drought can severely affect carbon dynamics in forest ecosystems through impacts on carbon storage, reduced carbon fixation, abatement of the carbon sink function, and alteration of carbon sink-source relationships. Currently, little is known about the effects of drought on the productivity and spatial patterns of carbon in bamboo forests. The objective of this study was to assess the effect of imposed drought on the carbon storage and soil carbon dynamics of a bamboo forest ecosystem in subtropical area of China. Drought was imposed via throughfall exclusion in moso bamboo forest from July 2012 to April 2013. Results indicated that bamboo shoots, new culms, shoot height, and diameter at breast height were significantly lower in throughfall exclusion (TE) plots than in control check (CK) plots, with decrease of 64.6, 70.8, 10.6 and 11.3%, respectively. Annual carbon sequestration for TE plots was 58.1% lower than that for CK plots. Soil carbon storage in the 0–60-cm layer in CK and TE plots decreased by 3.7 and 12.2%, respectively, indicating that drought can decrease soil respiration by altering substrate availability. Ecosystem carbon storage increased by 4.75 t ha−1 in CK plots but decreased by 13.71 t ha−1 in TE plots. Our findings highlight that drought can reduce carbon storage and alter the spatial pattern of carbon in moso bamboo forest ecosystems, particularly when drought occurs during the development bamboo shoot. Our findings should provide a better understanding of carbon sequestration potential and aid determination of how future climate change may impact carbon budgets.


Imposed drought Throughfall exclusion Carbon storage allocation Soil respiration Moso bamboo 



This study was supported by the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Non-profit Research Institution (CAFBB2014QA008, CAFYBB2016SY006 and RISF2013002), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (31600492 and 31670607), and the Lecture and Study Program for Outstanding Scholars from Home and Abroad (CAFYBB2011007). This paper was also supported by CFERN & BEIJING TECHNO SOLUTIONS Award Funds on excellent academic achievements.

Supplementary material

11284_2017_1529_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (97 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (PDF 97 kb)


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Copyright information

© The Ecological Society of Japan 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Xiaogai Ge
    • 1
    • 2
  • Benzhi Zhou
    • 1
    • 2
  • Xiaoming Wang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Qian Li
    • 1
    • 2
  • Yonghui Cao
    • 1
    • 2
  • Lianhong Gu
    • 3
  1. 1.Research Institute of Subtropical Forestry, Chinese Academy of ForestryHangzhouChina
  2. 2.Qianjiangyuan Forest Ecosystem Research Station, State Forestry Administration of ChinaHangzhouChina
  3. 3.Environmental Sciences DivisionOak Ridge National LaboratoryOak RidgeUSA

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