Analyzing size-symmetric vs. size-asymmetric and intra-vs. inter-specific competition in beech (Fagus sylvatica L.) mixed stands

Río Gaztelurrutia, Miren del and Condes Ruiz, Sonia and Pretzsch, Hans (2014). Analyzing size-symmetric vs. size-asymmetric and intra-vs. inter-specific competition in beech (Fagus sylvatica L.) mixed stands. "Forest Ecology And Management", v. 325 ; pp. 90-98. ISSN 0378-1127. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.foreco.2014.03.047.

Description

Title: Analyzing size-symmetric vs. size-asymmetric and intra-vs. inter-specific competition in beech (Fagus sylvatica L.) mixed stands
Author/s:
  • Río Gaztelurrutia, Miren del
  • Condes Ruiz, Sonia
  • Pretzsch, Hans
Item Type: Article
Título de Revista/Publicación: Forest Ecology And Management
Date: 2014
ISSN: 0378-1127
Volume: 325
Subjects:
Freetext Keywords: Species interactions; Tree basal area growth; Competitive reduction; Tree size-growth relationships; Above and belowground resources
Faculty: E.T.S.I. Montes (UPM)
Department: Sistemas y Recursos Naturales
Creative Commons Licenses: Recognition - No derivative works - Non commercial

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Abstract

In mixed stands, inter-specific competition can be lower than intra-specific competition when niche complementarity and/or facilitation between species prevail. These positive interactions can take place at belowground and/or aboveground levels. Belowground competition tends to be size symmetric while the aboveground competition is usually for light and almost always size-asymmetric. Interactions between forest tree species can be explored analyzing growth at tree level by comparing intra and inter-specific competition. At the same time, possible causes of niche complementarity can be inferred relating intra and inter-specific competition with the mode of competition, i.e. size-symmetric or sizeasymmetric. The aim of this paper is to further our understanding of the interactions between species and to detect possible causes of competition reduction in mixed stands of beech (Fagus sylvatica L.) with other species: pine?beech, oak?beech and fir?beech. To test whether species growth is better explained by size-symmetric and/or size-asymmetric competition, five different competition structures where included in basal area growth models fitted using data from the Spanish National Forest Inventory for the Pyrenees. These models considered either size-symmetry only (Reineke?s stand density index, SDI), size-asymmetry only (SDI of large trees or SDI of small trees), or both combined. In order to assess the influence of the admixture, these indices were introduced in two different ways, one of which was to consider that trees of all species compete in a similar way, and the other was to split the stand density indices into intra- and inter-specific competition components. The results showed that in pine?beech mixtures, there is a slightly negative effect of beech on pine basal area growth while beech benefitted from the admixture of Scots pine; this positive effect being greater as the proportion of pine trees in larger size classes increases. In oak?beech mixtures, beech growth was also positively influenced by the presence of oaks that were larger than the beech trees. The growth of oak, however, decreased when the proportion of beech in SDI increased, although the presence of beech in larger size classes promoted oak growth. Finally, in fir?beech mixtures, neither fir nor beech basal area growth were influenced by the presence of the other species. The results indicate that size-asymmetric is stronger than size-symmetric competition in these mixtures, highlighting the importance of light in competition. Positive species interactions in size-asymmetric competition involved a reduction of asymmetry in tree size-growth relationships.

Funding Projects

TypeCodeAcronymLeaderTitle
Government of SpainAGL20H-29701-C02-01UnspecifiedUnspecifiedUnspecified

More information

Item ID: 36136
DC Identifier: http://oa.upm.es/36136/
OAI Identifier: oai:oa.upm.es:36136
DOI: 10.1016/j.foreco.2014.03.047
Official URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0378112714002011
Deposited by: Memoria Investigacion
Deposited on: 19 Jun 2015 09:04
Last Modified: 02 Jul 2019 11:39
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