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The Impact of Climate Change on Different Tree Species within the Same Habitat Varies
author: source: Time:2024-06-13 font< big medium small >
Forests, which encompass 31% of the Earth's land surface, are indispensable for sustaining biodiversity and regulating the climate. However, climate change poses a significant challenge to forest growth, with different tree species showing markedly different responses to extreme drought conditions. Increases in frequence and intensity of extreme drought events under global warming, it urgently calls for in-depth research into the climate adaptability of various tree species, in order to take effective measures to protect forest ecosystems and combat the effects of global warming.
According to a new study published in Global Ecology and Conservation, a research team led by Prof. CAI Qiufang and Prof. LIU Yu from the Institute of Earth Environment of theChinese Academy of Sciences, has investigated the changes in Pinus tabulaeformis Carr. and Tsuga chinensis Pritz. on the southern slopes of the Qinling Mountains (SSQM) in the context of global warming. The Qinling Mountains mark the southernmost distribution boundary for natural P. tabulaeformis and the northernmost boundary for natural T. chinensis.
The researchers found that the climate response patterns of P. tabulaeformis and T. chinensis on the SSQM have undergone qualitative changes with global warming. The sensitivity of P. tabulaeformis to temperature and precipitation has decreased over time, while T. chinensis has become more dependent on hydrological conditions. During extreme drought events, P. tabulaeformis shows a stronger drought resistance compared to T. chinensis. The stronger drought resistance of P. tabulaeformis implies a greater ability to adapt to the warming and drying climate trend, potentially giving it a greater advantage in the current forest ecological composition. In contrast, T. chinensis is less capable of adapting.
This study highlights that different tree species in the same habitat exhibit significant heterogeneity in growth-climate response, and forest management and conservation measures should be species-specific.
This work was jointly supported by grants from the Natural Science Basic Research Program of Shaanxi (2024JC-ZDXM-17), the Strategic Priority Research Program of Chinese Academy of Sciences (XDB40010300), the Fund of Shandong Province (LSKJ202203300), the International (Regional) Cooperation and Exchange Program of National Natural Science Foundation of China (42361144712), etc.
Contact: BAI Jie, Institute of Earth Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Xi'an, China. Email: baijie@ieecas.cn
 
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Assessing Climatic Response and Drought Resilience in Growth of Pinus tabulaeformis Carr. and Tsuga chinensis Pritz. on the Southern Slope of the Qinling Mountains
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