Modelling competitive ability of Neotropical savanna grasses: Simulation of shading and drought impacts on biomass production

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Title: Modelling competitive ability of Neotropical savanna grasses: Simulation of shading and drought impacts on biomass production
Authors: Segarra Berenguer, José Gabriel | Raventós, José | Acevedo, Miguel F. | Silva, Juan F. | García Núñez, Carlos
Research Group/s: Gestión de Ecosistemas y de la Biodiversidad (GEB)
Center, Department or Service: Universidad de Alicante. Departamento de Ecología
Keywords: Biomass | Drought | Grasses | Convolution | Transition matrix | Evapotranspiration
Knowledge Area: Ecología
Issue Date: Jan-2013
Publisher: Elsevier
Citation: Ecological Informatics. 2013, 13: 57-69. doi:10.1016/j.ecoinf.2012.10.003
Abstract: In this paper, we develop a technique to model the spatial distribution of shoots along vertical and horizontal dimensions of a plant community. We use it to simulate the growth of a tropical savanna near the city of Barinas, Venezuela, to explore the responses of the peak biomass of a plant community to a range of 10-50% reduction of rainfall. We selected three dominant grass species: Elyonurus adustus, Leptocoryphium lanatum, and Andropogon semiberbis in a 4 × 7 m study plot. We estimate parameters values from data measured in the field. The number of shoots for each plant is obtained according to soil water availability and distributed vertically by 10 cm levels using a transition matrix. Convolution allows calculation of leaf area index for each cell and vertical level, which is then used to calculate light attenuation and thus the proportion of shaded shoots in each cell and level. With this information, maximum evapotranspiration is determined to calculate soil moisture using daily rain time series. Biomass is calculated for all species based on shoot biomass measured in the field and fire is simulated by removing a fraction of the shoots segments of all species. Modeled biomass fits reasonably well to field data.
Sponsor: We thank the Spanish Ministry of Education and Science (CGL2007-65315-C03 02; CGL2008-05112-C02-01/CLI) and GA-LC-031/2010 funded by CGA-La Caixa for their financial assistance.
ISSN: 1574-9541 (Print) | 1878-0512 (Online)
DOI: 10.1016/j.ecoinf.2012.10.003
Language: eng
Type: info:eu-repo/semantics/article
Peer Review: si
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Appears in Collections:INV - GEB - Artículos de Revistas

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