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Research Publications in journals:
Analyzing size-symmetric vs. size-asymmetric and intra-vs. inter-specific competition in beech (Fagus sylvatica L.) mixed stands
Research Areas
  • Engineering
In mixed stands, inter-specific competition can be lower than intra-specific competition when niche complementarity and/or facilitation between species prevail. These positive interactions can take place at belowground and/or aboveground levels. Belowground competition tends to be size symmetric while the aboveground competition is usually for light and almost always size-asymmetric. Interactions between forest tree species can be explored analyzing growth at tree level by comparing intra and inter-specific competition. At the same time, possible causes of niche complementarity can be inferred relating intra and inter-specific competition with the mode of competition, i.e. size-symmetric or sizeasymmetric. The aim of this paper is to further our understanding of the interactions between species and to detect possible causes of competition reduction in mixed stands of beech (Fagus sylvatica L.) with other species: pine?beech, oak?beech and fir?beech. To test whether species growth is better explained by size-symmetric and/or size-asymmetric competition, five different competition structures where included in basal area growth models fitted using data from the Spanish National Forest Inventory for the Pyrenees. These models considered either size-symmetry only (Reineke?s stand density index, SDI), size-asymmetry only (SDI of large trees or SDI of small trees), or both combined. In order to assess the influence of the admixture, these indices were introduced in two different ways, one of which was to consider that trees of all species compete in a similar way, and the other was to split the stand density indices into intra- and inter-specific competition components. The results showed that in pine?beech mixtures, there is a slightly negative effect of beech on pine basal area growth while beech benefitted from the admixture of Scots pine; this positive effect being greater as the proportion of pine trees in larger size classes increases. In oak?beech mixtures, beech growth was also positively influenced by the presence of oaks that were larger than the beech trees. The growth of oak, however, decreased when the proportion of beech in SDI increased, although the presence of beech in larger size classes promoted oak growth. Finally, in fir?beech mixtures, neither fir nor beech basal area growth were influenced by the presence of the other species. The results indicate that size-asymmetric is stronger than size-symmetric competition in these mixtures, highlighting the importance of light in competition. Positive species interactions in size-asymmetric competition involved a reduction of asymmetry in tree size-growth relationships.
Forest Ecology And Management
Impact factor JCR
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  • Autor: Miren Río (CIFOR- INIA)
  • Autor: Sonia Condes Ruiz (UPM)
  • Autor: Hans Pretzsch (Center of Life and Food Sciences Weihenstephan, Chair for Forest Growth and Yield Science, Technische Universität München, Hans-Carl-von Carlowitz-Platz 2, 85354 Freising, Bavaria, Germany)
Research Group, Departaments and Institutes related
  • Creador: Grupo de Investigación: Inventario y Gestión de Recursos Naturales
  • Departamento: Sistemas y Recursos Naturales
S2i 2020 Observatorio de investigación @ UPM con la colaboración del Consejo Social UPM
Cofinanciación del MINECO en el marco del Programa INNCIDE 2011 (OTR-2011-0236)
Cofinanciación del MINECO en el marco del Programa INNPACTO (IPT-020000-2010-22)