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A novel comparative research platform designed to determine the functional significance of tree species diversity in European forests

Lander Baeten 1, 2 Kris Verheyen 3 Christian Wirth 4 Helge Bruelheide 5, 6 Filippo Bussotti 7 Leena Finér 8 Bogdan Jaroszewicz 9 Federico Selvi 10 Fernando Valladaresh Eric Allan 11 Evy Ampoorter 12 Harald Auge 13, 14 Daniel Avacariei Luc Barbaro 15 Ionu Barnoaiea Cristina C. Bastias 16 Jürgen Bauhus 17 Carsten Beinhoff Raquel Benavides 18 Adam Benneter 18 Sigrid Berger 13, 19 Felix Berthold 20 Johanna Boberg 21 Damien Bonal 22 Wolfgang Braggernann Monique Carnol 23 Bastien Castagneyrol 15 Yohan Charbonnier 24 Ewa Checko David Coomess Andrea Coppi 10 Eleftheria Dalmaris Gabriel Danila Seid M. Dawud Wim De Vries Hans de Wandeler 25 Marc Deconchat 26 Timo Domisch 27 Gabriel Duduman Markus Fischer 28 Mariangela Fotelli Arthur Gessler 29 Teresa E. Gimeno André Granier 22 Charlotte Grossiord 22 Virginie Guyot 26 Lydia Hantsch Stephan Haettenschwiler 30 Andy Hector 31 Martin Hermy 32 Vera Holland Hervé Jactel 15 François-Xavier Joly 30 Tommaso Jucker 33 Simon Kolb Julia Koricheva 34 Manfred J. Lexer Mario Liebergesell Harriet Milligan 34 Sandra Mueller 35 Bart Muys 36 Diem Nguyen 21 Liviu Nichiforel Martina Pollastrini 37 Raphael Proulx 38, 39 Sonia Rabasa Kalliopi Radoglou Sophia Ratcliffe 40 Karsten Raulund-Rasmussen 41 Ian Seiferling Jan Stenlid 42 Lars Vesterdal 41 Klaus Von Wilpert Miguel A. Zavala 43 Dawid Zielínski 44 Michael Scherer-Lorenzen 45 
36 Division of Forest, Nature and Landscape
EES - Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences [Leuven]
Abstract : One of the current advances in functional biodiversity research is the move away from short-lived test systems towards the exploration of diversity-ecosystem functioning relationships in structurally more complex ecosystems. In forests, assumptions about the functional significance of tree species diversity have only recently produced a new generation of research on ecosystem processes and services. Novel experimental designs have now replaced traditional forestry trials, but these comparatively young experimental plots suffer from specific difficulties that are mainly related to the tree size and longevity. Tree species diversity experiments therefore need to be complemented with comparative observational studies in existing forests. Here we present the design and implementation of a new network of forest plots along tree species diversity gradients in six major European forest types: the FunDivEUROPE Exploratory Platform. Based on a review of the deficiencies of existing observational approaches and of unresolved research questions and hypotheses, we discuss the fundamental criteria that shaped the design of our platform. Key features include the extent of the species diversity gradient with mixtures up to five species, strict avoidance of a dilution gradient, special attention to community evenness and minimal covariation with other environmental factors. The new European research platform permits the most comprehensive assessment of tree species diversity effects on forest ecosystem functioning to date since it offers a common set of research plots to groups of researchers from very different disciplines and uses the same methodological approach in contrasting forest types along an extensive environmental gradient.
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Submitted on : Friday, June 16, 2017 - 10:26:12 AM
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Lander Baeten, Kris Verheyen, Christian Wirth, Helge Bruelheide, Filippo Bussotti, et al.. A novel comparative research platform designed to determine the functional significance of tree species diversity in European forests. Perspectives in Plant Ecology, Evolution and Systematics, Elsevier, 2013, 15 (5), pp.281-291. ⟨10.1016/j.ppees.2013.07.002⟩. ⟨hal-01540270⟩



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