Fire disturbance effects on plant taxonomic and functional β‐diversity mediated by topographic exposure - INRAE - Institut national de recherche pour l’agriculture, l’alimentation et l’environnement Access content directly
Journal Articles Ecology and Evolution Year : 2022

Fire disturbance effects on plant taxonomic and functional β‐diversity mediated by topographic exposure

Mehdi Abedi
Reza Omidipour
Seyed Vrya Hosseini
  • Function : Author
Khadijeh Bahalkeh

Abstract

Although the diversity-disturbance relationship has been extensively studied, the differences in responses of taxonomic vs. functional diversity to natural disturbances (i.e., fire) call for an improved understanding of this relationship. Here, we investigated how fire disturbance influenced plant taxonomic and functional diversity in Golestan National Park, in northeastern Iran. We evaluated the response of alpha- and beta-plant diversity considering both taxonomic and functional diversity and different beta-diversity components (i.e., turnover and nestedness) as a function of fire regime, topographic exposure, and their interactive effect. We considered different indices of functional diversity including functional richness, functional evenness, functional divergence, functional dispersion, Rao's quadratic entropy, and community-weighted mean (CWM). Functional diversity indices were computed using four leaf traits related to species growth strategy and fire response including leaf thickness and leaf length, specific leaf area (SLA) and leaf dry matter content (LDMC). Taxonomic and functional diversity had contrasting response to fire disturbance. Fire significantly decreased taxonomic a-diversity similarly in both north and south exposures. beta-diversity increased in south exposures but decreased in north exposures. Fire decreased functional richness, increased CWM of SLA, and decreased CWM of LDMC. In contrast, abundance-weighted metrics of functional diversity (functional evenness, functional divergence, functional dispersion, Rao's quadratic entropy) were not impacted by fire disturbance. Finally, the main contributors to heterogeneity were driven by a fire x exposure interaction, suggesting that fire disturbance interacts with topographic exposure. Our results suggest that taxonomic and functional alpha- and beta-diversity have contrasting responses to fire illustrating the need to consider both dimensions to understand how disturbance impacts plant communities. At large spatial scale, species turnover and nestedness appear as essential parameters to maintain species-rich communities in response to fire disturbance.
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hal-04161376 , version 1 (13-07-2023)

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Mehdi Abedi, Reza Omidipour, Seyed Vrya Hosseini, Khadijeh Bahalkeh, Nicolas Gross. Fire disturbance effects on plant taxonomic and functional β‐diversity mediated by topographic exposure. Ecology and Evolution, 2022, 13 (2), ⟨10.1002/ece3.8552⟩. ⟨hal-04161376⟩
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