Stabilizing Effects of Diversity on Aboveground Wood Production in Forest Ecosystems: Linking Patterns and Processes. Jucker, T., Bouriaud, O., Avacaritei, D., & Coomes, D. A. 17(12):1560–1569.
Stabilizing Effects of Diversity on Aboveground Wood Production in Forest Ecosystems: Linking Patterns and Processes [link]Paper  doi  abstract   bibtex   
Both theory and evidence suggest that diversity stabilises productivity in herbaceous plant communities through a combination of overyielding, species asynchrony and favourable species interactions. However, whether these same processes also promote stability in forest ecosystems has never been tested. Using tree ring data from permanent forest plots across Europe, we show that aboveground wood production is inherently more stable through time in mixed-species forests. Faster rates of wood production (i.e. overyielding), decreased year-to-year variation in productivity through asynchronous responses of species to climate, and greater temporal stability in the growth rates of individual tree species all contributed strongly to stabilising productivity in mixed stands. Together, these findings reveal the central role of diversity in stabilising productivity in forests, and bring us closer to understanding the processes which enable diverse forests to remain productive under a wide range of environmental conditions. [Excerpt: Implications for forest management and conservation] During the second half of the twentieth century European forests have functioned as a strong and persistent carbon sink in the northern hemisphere (Ciais et al. 2008). However, recent work suggests that this carbon sink may have begun to saturate (Nabuurs et al. 2013), as biomass accumulation rates have slowed and disturbance events (e.g. wind damage, forest fires, pest and pathogen outbreaks) have increased in frequency (Seidl et al. 2014). More effective management options are therefore needed if forests in Europe are to continue delivering valuable ecosystem services associated with timber production and CO2 sequestration. Traditionally, managing forests with the objective of promoting diversity has been regarded as largely incompatible with the requirements of production forests (Seidl et al. 2014). Yet, growing evidence indicates that this may not be the case, and that maintaining diverse forests has the potential to guarantee both high production yields and deliver a whole range of added co-benefits (Nadrowski et al. 2010). This understanding has contributed to the development of new forest management strategies which aim to maximize the resilience and adaptability of forests (Thompson et al. 2009; Filotas et al. 2014). In this context, our results suggest that maintaining diverse forest landscapes is critical to ensure that forests continue to function efficiently in an increasingly uncertain future.
@article{juckerStabilizingEffectsDiversity2014,
  title = {Stabilizing Effects of Diversity on Aboveground Wood Production in Forest Ecosystems: Linking Patterns and Processes},
  author = {Jucker, Tommaso and Bouriaud, Olivier and Avacaritei, Daniel and Coomes, David A.},
  date = {2014-12},
  journaltitle = {Ecology Letters},
  volume = {17},
  pages = {1560--1569},
  issn = {1461-0248},
  doi = {10.1111/ele.12382},
  url = {https://doi.org/10.1111/ele.12382},
  abstract = {Both theory and evidence suggest that diversity stabilises productivity in herbaceous plant communities through a combination of overyielding, species asynchrony and favourable species interactions. However, whether these same processes also promote stability in forest ecosystems has never been tested. Using tree ring data from permanent forest plots across Europe, we show that aboveground wood production is inherently more stable through time in mixed-species forests. Faster rates of wood production (i.e. overyielding), decreased year-to-year variation in productivity through asynchronous responses of species to climate, and greater temporal stability in the growth rates of individual tree species all contributed strongly to stabilising productivity in mixed stands. Together, these findings reveal the central role of diversity in stabilising productivity in forests, and bring us closer to understanding the processes which enable diverse forests to remain productive under a wide range of environmental conditions.

[Excerpt: Implications for forest management and conservation]

During the second half of the twentieth century European forests have functioned as a strong and persistent carbon sink in the northern hemisphere (Ciais et al. 2008). However, recent work suggests that this carbon sink may have begun to saturate (Nabuurs et al. 2013), as biomass accumulation rates have slowed and disturbance events (e.g. wind damage, forest fires, pest and pathogen outbreaks) have increased in frequency (Seidl et al. 2014). More effective management options are therefore needed if forests in Europe are to continue delivering valuable ecosystem services associated with timber production and CO2 sequestration. Traditionally, managing forests with the objective of promoting diversity has been regarded as largely incompatible with the requirements of production forests (Seidl et al. 2014). Yet, growing evidence indicates that this may not be the case, and that maintaining diverse forests has the potential to guarantee both high production yields and deliver a whole range of added co-benefits (Nadrowski et al. 2010). This understanding has contributed to the development of new forest management strategies which aim to maximize the resilience and adaptability of forests (Thompson et al. 2009; Filotas et al. 2014). In this context, our results suggest that maintaining diverse forest landscapes is critical to ensure that forests continue to function efficiently in an increasingly uncertain future.},
  keywords = {*imported-from-citeulike-INRMM,~INRMM-MiD:c-13917194,~to-add-doi-URL,biodiversity,diversity,ecosystem,ecosystem-resilience,forest-management,forest-resources,mixed-forests,stabilization,wood-production},
  number = {12}
}
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