A synthesis of tree functional traits related to drought-induced mortality in forests across climatic zones

Michael J. O'Brien, Bettina M.J. Engelbrecht, Julia Joswig, Gabriela Pereyra, Bernhard Schuldt, Steven Jansen, Jens Kattge, Simon M. Landhäusser, Shaun R. Levick, Yakir Preisler, Päivi Väänänen, Cate Macinnis-Ng

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Abstract

    Forest dieback caused by drought-induced tree mortality has been observed world-wide. Forecasting which trees in which locations are vulnerable to drought-induced mortality is important to predict the consequences of drought on forest structure, biodiversity and ecosystem function. In this paper, our central aim was to compile a synthesis of tree traits and associated abiotic variables that can be used to predict drought-induced mortality. We reviewed the literature that specifically links drought mortality to functional traits and site conditions (i.e. edaphic variables and biotic conditions), targeting studies that show clear use of tree traits in drought analysis. We separated the review into five climatic zones to determine global vs. regionally restricted relationships between traits and mortality. Our synthesis identifies a number of traits that have clear relationships with drought-induced mortality (e.g. wood density at the species level and tree size and growth at the individual level). However, the lack of direct relationships between most traits and drought-induced mortality highlights areas where future research should focus to broaden our understanding. Synthesis and applications. Our synthesis highlights established relationships between traits and drought-induced mortality, presents knowledge gaps for future research focus and suggests monitoring and research avenues for improving our understanding of drought-induced mortality. It is intended to assist ecologists and natural resource managers choose appropriate and measurable parameters for predicting local and regional scale tree mortality risk in different climatic zones within constraints of time and funding availability.

    LanguageEnglish
    JournalJournal of Applied Ecology
    DOIs
    StateAccepted/In press - 2017

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    drought
    mortality
    climatic zone
    mortality risk
    dieback
    ecosystem function
    targeting
    natural resource
    biodiversity
    monitoring
    parameter
    analysis
    world

    Cite this

    O'Brien, M. J., Engelbrecht, B. M. J., Joswig, J., Pereyra, G., Schuldt, B., Jansen, S., ... Macinnis-Ng, C. (2017). A synthesis of tree functional traits related to drought-induced mortality in forests across climatic zones. Journal of Applied Ecology. DOI: 10.1111/1365-2664.12874
    O'Brien, Michael J. ; Engelbrecht, Bettina M.J. ; Joswig, Julia ; Pereyra, Gabriela ; Schuldt, Bernhard ; Jansen, Steven ; Kattge, Jens ; Landhäusser, Simon M. ; Levick, Shaun R. ; Preisler, Yakir ; Väänänen, Päivi ; Macinnis-Ng, Cate. / A synthesis of tree functional traits related to drought-induced mortality in forests across climatic zones. In: Journal of Applied Ecology. 2017
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    title = "A synthesis of tree functional traits related to drought-induced mortality in forests across climatic zones",
    abstract = "Forest dieback caused by drought-induced tree mortality has been observed world-wide. Forecasting which trees in which locations are vulnerable to drought-induced mortality is important to predict the consequences of drought on forest structure, biodiversity and ecosystem function. In this paper, our central aim was to compile a synthesis of tree traits and associated abiotic variables that can be used to predict drought-induced mortality. We reviewed the literature that specifically links drought mortality to functional traits and site conditions (i.e. edaphic variables and biotic conditions), targeting studies that show clear use of tree traits in drought analysis. We separated the review into five climatic zones to determine global vs. regionally restricted relationships between traits and mortality. Our synthesis identifies a number of traits that have clear relationships with drought-induced mortality (e.g. wood density at the species level and tree size and growth at the individual level). However, the lack of direct relationships between most traits and drought-induced mortality highlights areas where future research should focus to broaden our understanding. Synthesis and applications. Our synthesis highlights established relationships between traits and drought-induced mortality, presents knowledge gaps for future research focus and suggests monitoring and research avenues for improving our understanding of drought-induced mortality. It is intended to assist ecologists and natural resource managers choose appropriate and measurable parameters for predicting local and regional scale tree mortality risk in different climatic zones within constraints of time and funding availability.",
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    author = "O\{textquoteleft}Brien, {Michael J.} and Engelbrecht, {Bettina M.J.} and Julia Joswig and Gabriela Pereyra and Bernhard Schuldt and Steven Jansen and Jens Kattge and Landh\{"a}usser, {Simon M.} and Levick, {Shaun R.} and Yakir Preisler and P\{"a}ivi V\{"a}\{"a}n\{"a}nen and Cate Macinnis-Ng",
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    O'Brien, MJ, Engelbrecht, BMJ, Joswig, J, Pereyra, G, Schuldt, B, Jansen, S, Kattge, J, Landhäusser, SM, Levick, SR, Preisler, Y, Väänänen, P & Macinnis-Ng, C 2017, 'A synthesis of tree functional traits related to drought-induced mortality in forests across climatic zones' Journal of Applied Ecology. DOI: 10.1111/1365-2664.12874

    A synthesis of tree functional traits related to drought-induced mortality in forests across climatic zones. / O'Brien, Michael J.; Engelbrecht, Bettina M.J.; Joswig, Julia; Pereyra, Gabriela; Schuldt, Bernhard; Jansen, Steven; Kattge, Jens; Landhäusser, Simon M.; Levick, Shaun R.; Preisler, Yakir; Väänänen, Päivi; Macinnis-Ng, Cate.

    In: Journal of Applied Ecology, 2017.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    TY - JOUR

    T1 - A synthesis of tree functional traits related to drought-induced mortality in forests across climatic zones

    AU - O'Brien,Michael J.

    AU - Engelbrecht,Bettina M.J.

    AU - Joswig,Julia

    AU - Pereyra,Gabriela

    AU - Schuldt,Bernhard

    AU - Jansen,Steven

    AU - Kattge,Jens

    AU - Landhäusser,Simon M.

    AU - Levick,Shaun R.

    AU - Preisler,Yakir

    AU - Väänänen,Päivi

    AU - Macinnis-Ng,Cate

    PY - 2017

    Y1 - 2017

    N2 - Forest dieback caused by drought-induced tree mortality has been observed world-wide. Forecasting which trees in which locations are vulnerable to drought-induced mortality is important to predict the consequences of drought on forest structure, biodiversity and ecosystem function. In this paper, our central aim was to compile a synthesis of tree traits and associated abiotic variables that can be used to predict drought-induced mortality. We reviewed the literature that specifically links drought mortality to functional traits and site conditions (i.e. edaphic variables and biotic conditions), targeting studies that show clear use of tree traits in drought analysis. We separated the review into five climatic zones to determine global vs. regionally restricted relationships between traits and mortality. Our synthesis identifies a number of traits that have clear relationships with drought-induced mortality (e.g. wood density at the species level and tree size and growth at the individual level). However, the lack of direct relationships between most traits and drought-induced mortality highlights areas where future research should focus to broaden our understanding. Synthesis and applications. Our synthesis highlights established relationships between traits and drought-induced mortality, presents knowledge gaps for future research focus and suggests monitoring and research avenues for improving our understanding of drought-induced mortality. It is intended to assist ecologists and natural resource managers choose appropriate and measurable parameters for predicting local and regional scale tree mortality risk in different climatic zones within constraints of time and funding availability.

    AB - Forest dieback caused by drought-induced tree mortality has been observed world-wide. Forecasting which trees in which locations are vulnerable to drought-induced mortality is important to predict the consequences of drought on forest structure, biodiversity and ecosystem function. In this paper, our central aim was to compile a synthesis of tree traits and associated abiotic variables that can be used to predict drought-induced mortality. We reviewed the literature that specifically links drought mortality to functional traits and site conditions (i.e. edaphic variables and biotic conditions), targeting studies that show clear use of tree traits in drought analysis. We separated the review into five climatic zones to determine global vs. regionally restricted relationships between traits and mortality. Our synthesis identifies a number of traits that have clear relationships with drought-induced mortality (e.g. wood density at the species level and tree size and growth at the individual level). However, the lack of direct relationships between most traits and drought-induced mortality highlights areas where future research should focus to broaden our understanding. Synthesis and applications. Our synthesis highlights established relationships between traits and drought-induced mortality, presents knowledge gaps for future research focus and suggests monitoring and research avenues for improving our understanding of drought-induced mortality. It is intended to assist ecologists and natural resource managers choose appropriate and measurable parameters for predicting local and regional scale tree mortality risk in different climatic zones within constraints of time and funding availability.

    KW - Climate change

    KW - Drought-induced mortality

    KW - Forest dieback

    KW - Forested climatic zones

    KW - Plant functional traits

    KW - Plant-climate interactions

    KW - Research gaps

    KW - Water deficit

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    O'Brien MJ, Engelbrecht BMJ, Joswig J, Pereyra G, Schuldt B, Jansen S et al. A synthesis of tree functional traits related to drought-induced mortality in forests across climatic zones. Journal of Applied Ecology. 2017. Available from, DOI: 10.1111/1365-2664.12874