Biodiversity & Conservation

, Volume 12, Issue 11, pp 2255–2277 | Cite as

A spatial model of tree α-diversity and tree density for the Amazon

  • Hans Ter Steege
  • Nigel Pitman
  • Daniel Sabatier
  • Hernan Castellanos
  • Peter Van Der Hout
  • Douglas C. Daly
  • Marcos Silveira
  • Oliver Phillips
  • Rodolfo Vasquez
  • Tinde Van Andel
  • Joost Duivenvoorden
  • Alexandre Adalardo De Oliveira
  • Renske Ek
  • Ramesh Lilwah
  • Raquel Thomas
  • Jessica Van Essen
  • Claudia Baider
  • Paul Maas
  • Scott Mori
  • John Terborgh
  • Percy NúÑez Vargas
  • Hugo Mogollón
  • Wilfried Morawetz
Article

Abstract

Large-scale patterns of Amazonian biodiversity have until now been obscured by a sparse and scattered inventory record. Here we present the first comprehensive spatial model of tree α-diversity and tree density in Amazonian rainforests, based on the largest-yet compilation of forest inventories and bolstered by a spatial interpolation technique that allows us to estimate diversity and density in areas that have never been inventoried. These data were then compared to continent-wide patterns of rainfall seasonality. We find that dry season length, while only weakly correlated with average tree α-diversity, is a strong predictor of tree density and of maximum tree α-diversity. The most diverse forests for any given DSL are concentrated in a narrow latitudinal band just south of the equator, while the least diverse forests for any given DSL are found in the Guayana Shield and Amazonian Bolivia. Denser forests are more diverse than sparser forests, even when we used a measure of diversity that corrects for sample size. We propose that rainfall seasonality regulates tree α-diversity and tree density by affecting shade tolerance and subsequently the number of different functional types of trees that can persist in an area.

Amazon Guayana Shield Kriging Planning inventories Quantile regression Tree α-diversity Tree density 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Burrough P.A. and McDonnel R.A. 1998. Principles of Geographic Information Systems. Oxford University Press, Oxford, UK.Google Scholar
  2. Bush M.B. 1994. Amazonian speciation: a necessarily complex model. Journal of Biogeography 21: 5–17.Google Scholar
  3. Cade B.S., Terrel J.W. and Schroeder R.L. 1999. Estimating effects of limiting factors with regression quantiles. Ecology 80: 311–323.Google Scholar
  4. Condit R., Foster R.B., Hubbell S.P., Sukumar R., Leigh E.G., Manokaran N. et al. 1998. Assessing forest diversity on small plots: calibration using species¶individual curves from 50-ha plots. In: Dallmeier F. and Comiskey J.A. (eds), Forest Biodiversity Research, Monitoring and Modelling. Conceptual Background and Old World Case Studies. MAB Series Vol. 20. UNESCO, Paris, pp. 247–268.Google Scholar
  5. Condit R., Pitman N., Leigh E.G. Jr., Chave J., Terborgh J., Foster R.B. et al. 2002. Beta-Diversity in Tropical Forest Trees. Science 295: 666–669.Google Scholar
  6. Colwell R.K. and Lees D.C. 2000. The mid-domain effect: geometric constraints on the geography of species richness. Trends in Ecology and Evolution 15: 70–76.Google Scholar
  7. Clinebell R.R., Phillips O.L., Gentry A.H., Stark N. and Zuuring H. 1995. Prediction of neotropical tree and liana species richness from soil and climatic data. Biodiversity and Conservation 4: 56–90.Google Scholar
  8. Conservation International 1990. Workshop 90. Biological Priorities for Conservation in Amazonia. Conservation International, Washington, DC.Google Scholar
  9. Fisher A.A., Corbet A.S. and Williams C.B. 1943. The relation between the number of species and the number of individuals in a random sample of an animal population. Journal of Animal Ecology 12: 42–58.Google Scholar
  10. Gaston K.J. 2000. Global patterns in biodiversity. Nature 504: 220–227.Google Scholar
  11. Gentry A.H. 1988a. Tree species richness of upper Amazonian forests. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA 85: 156–159.Google Scholar
  12. Gentry A.H. 1988b. Changes in plant community diversity and floristic composition on environmental and geographical gradients. Annals of the Missouri Botanical Garden 75: 1–34.Google Scholar
  13. Givnish T.J. 1999. On the causes of gradients in tropical tree diversity. Journal of Ecology 87: 193–210.Google Scholar
  14. Hall J.B. and Swaine M.D. 1976. Classification and ecology of closed-canopy forest in Ghana. Journal of Ecology 64: 913–951.Google Scholar
  15. Henkel T.W. in press. Monodominance in the ectomycorrhizal Dicymbe corymbosa (Caesalpiniaceae) from Guyana. Journal of Tropical Ecology.Google Scholar
  16. Hille Ris-Lambers J., Clark J.S. and Beckage B. 2000. Density-dependent mortality and the latitudinal gradient in species diversity. Nature 417: 732–735.Google Scholar
  17. Huston M.A 1980. Soil nutrients and tree species richness in Costa Rican forests. Journal of Biogeography 7: 147–157.Google Scholar
  18. Huston M.A. 1994. Biological Diversity. The Coexistence of Species on Changing Landscapes. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK, 681 pp.Google Scholar
  19. Kalunzy S.P., Vega S.C., Cardoso T.P. and Shelly A.A. 1998. S1 Spatial Stats. User's Manual for Windows and UNIX. Mathsoft Inc., Seattle, Washington.Google Scholar
  20. Kikuzawa K. 1996. Geographical distribution of leaf life span and species diversity of trees simulated by a leaf-longevity model. Vegetatio 122: 61–67.Google Scholar
  21. Kleidon A. and Mooney H.A. 2000. A global distribution of biodiversity inferred from climatic constraints; results from a process-based modelling study. Global Change Biology 6: 507–523.Google Scholar
  22. Koenker R.W. and Bassett G.W. 1978. Regression quantiles. Econometrica 46: 33–50.Google Scholar
  23. Leigh E.G. 1995. Epilogue: research on Barro Colorado Island 1980¶1994. In: Leigh E.G., Rand A.S and Windsor D.M. (eds), The Ecology of a Tropical Rain Forest, Seasonal Rhythms and Long Term Changes. Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington, DC, pp. 496–503.Google Scholar
  24. Mayle F.E., Burbridge R. and Killeen T.J. 2000. Millennial-scale dynamics of southern Amazonian rain forests. Science 290: 2291–2294.Google Scholar
  25. Myers N., Mittermeier R.A., Mittermeier C.G., da Fonseca G.A.B. and Kent J. 2000. Biodiversity hotspots for conservation priorities. Nature 403: 853–858.Google Scholar
  26. de Oliveira A.A. and Mori S.A. 1999. A central Amazonian terra firme forest I. High tree species richness on poor soils. Biodiversity and Conservation 8: 1219–1244.Google Scholar
  27. Phillips O.L., Hall P., Gentry A.H., Sawyer A.S. and Vasquez R. 1994. Dynamics and species richness of tropical rain forests. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA 2805–2809.Google Scholar
  28. Pitman N.C.A. 2000. A large-scale inventory of two Amazonian tree communities, Ph.D. Thesis, Duke University, Durham, North Carolina.Google Scholar
  29. Prance G.T. 1982. Forest refuges: evidence from woody angiosperms. In: Prance G.T. (ed.), Biological Diversification in the Tropics. Columbia University Press, New York, pp. 137–138.Google Scholar
  30. Rosenzweig M.L. 1995. Species Diversity in Space and Time. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK, 436 pp.Google Scholar
  31. Sombroek W. 2001. Spatial and temporal patterns of Amazon rainfall. Consequences for the planning of agricultural occupation and protection of primary forests. Ambio 30: 388–396.Google Scholar
  32. Taylor L.R., Kempton R.A. and Woiwod I.P. 1976. Diversity statistics and the log-series model. Journal of Animal Ecology 45: 255–272.Google Scholar
  33. Terborgh J. 1973. On the notion of favorableness in plant ecology. American Naturalist 107: 481–501.Google Scholar
  34. Terborgh J. and Andresen E. 1998. The composition of Amazonian forests: patterns at local and regional scale. Journal of Tropical Ecology 14: 645–664.Google Scholar
  35. ter Steege H. and Zagt R. 2002. Density and diversity. Nature 417: 698–699.Google Scholar
  36. ter Steege H., Sabatier S., Castellanos H., van Andel T., Duivenvoorden J., de Oliveira A.A. et al. 2000. An analysis of Amazonian floristic composition, including those of the Guiana Shield. Journal of Tropical Ecology 16: 801–828.Google Scholar
  37. Vasques-Martinez R. and Phillips O.L. 2000. Allpahuayo: floristics, structure and dynamics of a high-diversity forest in Amazonian Peru. Annals of the Missouri Botanical Garden 87: 499–527.Google Scholar
  38. Venables W.N. and Ripley B.D. 1998. Modern Applied Statistics with S-plus. Springer, New York, 548 pp.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hans Ter Steege
  • Nigel Pitman
  • Daniel Sabatier
  • Hernan Castellanos
  • Peter Van Der Hout
  • Douglas C. Daly
  • Marcos Silveira
  • Oliver Phillips
  • Rodolfo Vasquez
  • Tinde Van Andel
  • Joost Duivenvoorden
  • Alexandre Adalardo De Oliveira
  • Renske Ek
  • Ramesh Lilwah
  • Raquel Thomas
  • Jessica Van Essen
  • Claudia Baider
  • Paul Maas
  • Scott Mori
  • John Terborgh
  • Percy NúÑez Vargas
  • Hugo Mogollón
  • Wilfried Morawetz

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations