Climate seasonality limits leaf carbon assimilation and wood productivity in tropical forests

Fabien H. Wagner, Bruno Hérault, Damien Bonal, Clment Stahl, Liana O Anderson, Timothy R. Baker, Gabriel Sebastian Becker, Hans Beeckman, Danilo Boanerges Souza, Paulo Cesar Botosso, David M.J.S. Bowman, Achim Bräuning, Benjamin Brede, Foster Irving Brown, Jesus Julio Camarero, Plnio Barbosa Camargo, Fernanda C.G. Cardoso, Fabrcio Alvim Carvalho, Wendeson Castro, Rubens Koloski ChagasJrome Chave, Emmanuel N. Chidumayo, Deborah A. Clark, Flavia Regina Capellotto Costa, Camille Couralet, Paulo Henrique Da Silva Mauricio, Helmut Dalitz, Vinicius Resende De Castro, Jaanan Eloisa De Freitas Milani, Edilson Consuelo De Oliveira, Luciano De Souza Arruda, Jean Louis Devineau, David M. Drew, Oliver Dünisch, Giselda Durigan, Elisha Elifuraha, Marcio Fedele, Ligia Ferreira Fedele, Afonso Figueiredo Filho, Csar Augusto Guimares Finger, Augusto César Franco, Lima Freitas Jnior, Franklin Galvão, Aster Gebrekirstos, Robert Gliniars, Paulo Maurício Lima De Alencastro Graça, Anthony D. Griffiths, James Grogan, Kaiyu Guan, Jrgen Homeier, Maria Raquel Kanieski, Lip Khoon Kho, Jennifer Koenig, Sintia Valerio Kohler, Julia Krepkowski, Jos Pires Lemos-Filho, Diana Lieberman, Milton Eugene Lieberman, Claudio Sergio Lisi, Tomaz Longhi Santos, Jos Luis Lpez Ayala, Eduardo Eijji Maeda, Yadvinder Malhi, Vivian R.B. Maria, Marcia C.M. Marques, Renato Marques, Hector Maza Chamba, Lawrence Mbwambo, Karina Liana Lisboa Melgaço, Hooz Angela Mendivelso, Brett P. Murphy, Joseph J. O'Brien, Steven F. Oberbauer, Naoki Okada, Raphal Plissier, Lynda D. Prior, Fidel Alejandro Roig, Michael Ross, Davi Rodrigo Rossatto, Vivien Rossi, Lucy Rowland, Ervan Rutishauser, Hellen Santana, Mark Schulze, Diogo Selhorst, Williamar Rodrigues Silva, Marcos Silveira, Susanne Spannl, Michael D. Swaine, Jos Julio Toledo, Marcos Miranda Toledo, Marisol Toledo, Takeshi Toma, Mario Tomazello Filho, Juan Ignacio Valdez Hernández, Jan Verbesselt, Simone Aparecida Vieira, Grgoire Vincent, Carolina Volkmer De Castilho, Franziska Volland, Martin Worbes, Magda Lea Bolzan Zanon, Luiz E.O.C. Aragão

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    Abstract

    The seasonal climate drivers of the carbon cycle in tropical forests remain poorly known, although these forests account for more carbon assimilation and storage than any other terrestrial ecosystem. Based on a unique combination of seasonal pan-tropical data sets from 89 experimental sites (68 include aboveground wood productivity measurements and 35 litter productivity measurements), their associated canopy photosynthetic capacity (enhanced vegetation index, EVI) and climate, we ask how carbon assimilation and aboveground allocation are related to climate seasonality in tropical forests and how they interact in the seasonal carbon cycle. We found that canopy photosynthetic capacity seasonality responds positively to precipitation when rainfall is < 2000 mm yr-1 (water-limited forests) and to radiation otherwise (light-limited forests). On the other hand, independent of climate limitations, wood productivity and litterfall are driven by seasonal variation in precipitation and evapotranspiration, respectively. Consequently, light-limited forests present an asynchronism between canopy photosynthetic capacity and wood productivity. First-order control by precipitation likely indicates a decrease in tropical forest productivity in a drier climate in water-limited forest, and in current light-limited forest with future rainfall < 2000 mm yr-1

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)2537-2562
    Number of pages26
    JournalBiogeosciences
    Volume13
    Issue number8
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 28 Apr 2016

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