HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Tropical tree distribution could have implications for forest management, conservation

The sheer diversity of tropical forests -- where 130 acres can contain as many as 1,100 tree species and 366,000 individual trees -- has long clouded the basic ecological question of whether tropical trees of the same species are "aggregated" or dispersed randomly across the landscape. A census of six large plots of 25 to 52 hectares (60 to 130 acres) in five South American and Asian countries is described in this week's Science and shows most tropical trees are aggregated, or clumped. The size of the data set should help end decades of debate on this subject, according to Patrick Baker, co-author and doctoral student at the University of Washington's College of Forest Resources.

The findings have implications for environmental decision-makers interested in such things as designing nature reserves, selecting native trees to reforest degraded areas and determining biologically sustainable harvest rates for timber, Baker says, "provided researchers can next determine if there are key mechanisms that drive these patterns."

The notion that species were widely dispersed dominated theoretical tropical ecology from 1853 until 1979 when Stephen Hubbell, another co-author on this week's Science paper, published results contrary to popular wisdom based on work at a 13-hectare plot in Costa Rica. Hubbell's results have been the subject of debate since then.

Much larger plots from Panama, Malaysia, Thailand, India and Sri Lanka have now been surveyed in work funded mainly by the National Science Foundation and the MacArthur Foundation, and coordinated through the Center for Tropical Forest Science, a part of the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute.

Nearly every species was aggregated when scientists considered trees of 1 cm or more in diameter, according to calculations by the paper's lead author Richard Condit of the Center for Tropical Forest Science. Rare species were substantially more aggregated than common species at all but one site. Clumping
'"/>

Contact: Sandra Hines
shines@u.washington.edu
206-543-2580
University of Washington
24-May-2000


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Tropical legume could be alternative hay/forage crop for Texas
2. Tropical deforestation and global warming
3. Arthropods of Tropical Forests
4. Tropical Science for the 21st Century
5. A Magic Web: The Tropical Forest of Barro Colorado
6. Ira Rubinoff honored by the Association for Tropical Biology
7. Tropical forests under surveillance
8. Tropical scientists find fewer species than expected
9. Sessions on bioterrorism featured at Tropical Medicine Meeting
10. Tropical glaciers formed while earth was giant snowball
11. Chemistry in the Amazon: Tropical birds, Amazonian tribespeople derive medicinal benefits from insects, plants

Post Your Comments:
(Date:4/24/2014)... world,s oceans play a crucial role in the ... ecosystems and atmosphere. Now scientists at Scripps Institution ... a leap forward in understanding the microscopic underpinnings ... dioxide to make new cells, a substantial portion ... sea as a buffet of edible molecules collectively ...
(Date:4/24/2014)... EAST LANSING, Mich. --- New research shows that cells ... than scientists originally thought. Even when missing critical components, ... in an alternative way. , In a study published ... of researchers at Michigan State University showed that cells ... duplicate their DNA. , "Our genetic information is stored ...
(Date:4/24/2014)... pleased to announce that it has assumed ownership of ... University of Wisconsin. , The Journal of ... journal that publishes papers on all aspects of the ... molecular to the ecological -- as well as their ... individuals and institutions, and it provides a reasonably priced ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Microscopic organism plays a big role in ocean carbon cycling, Scripps scientists discover 2Microscopic organism plays a big role in ocean carbon cycling, Scripps scientists discover 3Cell resiliency surprises scientists 2ESA to publish the Journal of Insect Science 2
(Date:1/14/2014)... January 14, 2014 In recent years, ... and methods in product development and promotion has led ... This mistrust, fueled by concerns about the insidious impact ... reports of spectacular fines to the world’s biggest pharmas ...
(Date:1/14/2014)... Global Record Systems, LLC, (GRS), a ... for patients, physicians, the biopharmaceutical industry, regulators, payers, ... signing of a three-year Research Collaboration Agreement (RCA) ... This initiative is designed to generate disruptive ...
(Date:1/14/2014)... Bellingham, Washington, USA, and Cardiff, UK (PRWEB) January 13, ... and photonics technology development leader with more than 20 ... international society for optics and photonics . Hainsey will ... “We are delighted to have Dr. Hainsey join SPIE ...
(Date:1/14/2014)... 14, 2014 During the 1600’s through the ... “The Doctor’s Plague.” In this time period, doctors did not ... at times, to the death of vulnerable patients. In the ... that they may be unwittingly transmitting herpes viruses to their ...
Breaking Biology Technology:The Sunshine Act: Necessary Regulation or Unnecessary Dysregulation? New Life Science Webinar Hosted by Xtalks and IRB Services 2The Sunshine Act: Necessary Regulation or Unnecessary Dysregulation? New Life Science Webinar Hosted by Xtalks and IRB Services 3Global Record Systems Announces Research Collaboration Agreement with FDA to Create a Novel “Big Data” Paradigm for Collection of Patient Safety and Outcomes Information 2Photonics R&D Leader Bob Hainsey Joins SPIE Technical Staff 2Study: Fatigued Medical Interns Infect Their Patients with Herpes Viruses; The CBCD Sees a Parallel with “The Doctor’s Plague” 2Study: Fatigued Medical Interns Infect Their Patients with Herpes Viruses; The CBCD Sees a Parallel with “The Doctor’s Plague” 3
Cached News: