by: Ulla Vänttinen
Raabe S., Müller J., Manthey M., Dürhammer O., Teuber U., Göttlein A,, Förster B., Brandl R. and Bässler C., 2010. Drivers of bryophyte diversity allow implications for forest management with a focus on climate change. Forest Ecology and Management 260 (11), pp. 1956-1964.
Understanding the major drivers of diversity in forests is crucial for ecologists, conservationists, and particularly forest managers. In most forested habitats, bryophytes are diverse and important primary producers. Here we report the first study of the relative importance of regional macroclimate as compared to local variables on abundance, species richness, and community composition of bryophytes growing in soil and in dead wood in a mountain temperate forest. Using PCA axes, we built predictor sets for macroclimate, microclimate, soil attributes, and dead wood availability. The explanatory power of each set was tested using variance partitioning. Abundance and species richness of soil bryophytes was best explained by microclimate, whereas the community composition did not distinctively differ between the environmental sets. In contrast, dead wood bryophyte abundance, species richness, and community composition was clearly driven by macroclimate. Among the single axes, the component represented best by soil moisture was the main driver for soil bryophyte abundance. In contrast, dead wood bryophyte abundance was mostly affected by components correlated with minimum global radiation and minimum temperatures as well as by the component represented by dead wood. The component represented by canopy openness was superior in explaining the community composition of both soil and dead wood bryophytes. We conclude that (1) dead wood amounts should be increased in closed stands to act as a buffer during climate changes, and (2) open canopy, which provides important habitats for soil-inhabiting bryophytes, should be provided by management with slow reforestation after natural or logging openings.
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