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Pan-tropical prediction of forest structure from the largest trees

Jean-Francois Bastin 1 Ervan Rutishauser 2 James Kellner Sassan Saatchi 3 Raphaël Pélissier 4 Bruno Hérault 5, 6 Ferry Slik Jan Bogaert 7 Charles de Canniere 1 Andrew Marshall 8 John Poulsen Patricia Alvarez-Loyayza Ana Andrade 9 Albert Angbonga-Basia Alejandro Araujo-Murakami 10 Luzmila Arroyo 10 Narayanan Ayyappan 11 Celso Paulo de Azevedo Olaf Banki 12 Nicolas Barbier 4 Jorcely Barroso 13 Hans Beeckman 14 Robert Bitariho Pascal Boeckx 15 Katrin Boehning-Gaese Hilandia Brandão Francis Brearley Mireille Breuer Ndoundou Hockemba Roel Brienen 16 José Luís C. Camargo 17 Ahimsa Campos-Arceiz Benoit Cassart Jérôme Chave 18 Robin Chazdon Georges Chuyong 19 David Clark 20 Connie Clark Richard Condit Euridice Honorio Coronado David Davidar Thalès de Haulleville Laurent Descroix 21 Jean-Louis Doucet 22 Aurélie Dourdain 5, 6 Vincent Droissart 4 Thomas Duncan Javier Silva Espejo Santiago Espinosa Nina Farwig 23 Adeline Fayolle 24 Ted Feldpausch António Ferraz 3 Christine Fletcher 25 Krisna Gajapersad Jean-François Gillet 22 Iêda Leão Do Amaral Christelle Gonmadje James Grogan 26 David Harris 27 Sebastian Herzog Jürgen Homeier 28 Wannes Hubau 29 Stephen Hubbell Koen Hufkens Johanna Hurtado Narcisse Kamdem Elizabeth Kearsley David Kenfack 30 Michael Kessler 31 Nicolas Labrière 32 Yves Laumonier 33 James Laurance Simon Lewis Moses Libalah 34 Gauthier Ligot Jon Lloyd 35 Thomas Lovejoy 36 Yadvinder Malhi 37 Beatriz Marimon Ben Hur Marimon 38 Emmanuel Martin 39 Paulus Matius Victoria Meyer Casimero Mendoza Bautista Abel Monteagudo-Mendoza 40 Arafat Mtui David Neill 41 Germaine Alexander Parada Gutierrez Guido Pardo 42 Marc Parren N. Parthasarathy 43 Oliver Phillips Nigel Pitman 44 Pierre Ploton 4 Quentin Ponette 45 B.R. Ramesh 11 Jean-Claude Razafimahaimodison Maxime Réjou-Méchain 4, 46 Samir Gonçalves Rolim Hugo Romero Saltos Marc Rossi Robert Spironello Francesco Rovero 47 Philippe Saner Denise Sasaki Andrew Schulze Marc Silveira James Singh Plinio Sist 48, 6 Bonaventure Sonké 34 J. Daniel Soto Cintia Rodrigues de Souza 49 Juliana Stropp 50 Martin Martin Ben Swanepoel Hans Steege James Terborgh Nicolas Texier 4 Takeshi Toma 51 Renato Valencia 52 Luis Valenzuela Leandro Valle Ferreira Fernando Cornejo Valverde 53 Tinde van Andel Rodolfo Vasque Hans Verbeeck 54 Pandi Vivek Jason Vleminckx Vincent Vos Fabien Wagner 55 Papi Puspa Warsudi Verginia Wortel 56 Roderick Zagt Donatien Zebaze 57
Abstract : Aim Large tropical trees form the interface between ground and airborne observations, offering a unique opportunity to capture forest properties remotely and to investigate their variations on broad scales. However, despite rapid development of metrics to characterize the forest canopy from remotely sensed data, a gap remains between aerial and field inventories. To close this gap, we propose a new pan-tropical model to predict plot-level forest structure properties and biomass from only the largest trees. Location Time period Pan-tropical. Early 21st century. Major taxa studied Methods Woody plants. Using a dataset of 867 plots distributed among 118 sites across the tropics, we tested the prediction of the quadratic mean diameter, basal area, Lorey's height, community wood density and aboveground biomass (AGB) from the ith largest trees. Results Main conclusions Measuring the largest trees in tropical forests enables unbiased predictions of plot- and site-level forest structure. The 20 largest trees per hectare predicted quadratic mean diameter, basal area, Lorey's height, community wood density and AGB with 12, 16, 4, 4 and 17.7% of relative error, respectively. Most of the remaining error in biomass prediction is driven by differences in the proportion of total biomass held in medium-sized trees (50-70 cm diameter at breast height), which shows some continental dependency, with American tropical forests presenting the highest proportion of total biomass in these intermediate-diameter classes relative to other continents. Our approach provides new information on tropical forest structure and can be used to generate accurate field estimates of tropical forest carbon stocks to support the calibration and validation of current and forthcoming space missions. It will reduce the cost of field inventories and contribute to scientific understanding of tropical forest ecosystems and response to climate change.
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Jean-Francois Bastin, Ervan Rutishauser, James Kellner, Sassan Saatchi, Raphaël Pélissier, et al.. Pan-tropical prediction of forest structure from the largest trees. Global Ecology and Biogeography, Wiley, 2018, 27 (11), pp.1366-1383. ⟨10.1111/geb.12803⟩. ⟨hal-02102265⟩

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