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1.
Mol Ecol Resour ; 19(5): 1265-1277, 2019 Sep.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31232514

RESUMO

Most work on plant community ecology has been performed above ground, neglecting the processes that occur in the soil. DNA metabarcoding, in which multiple species are computationally identified in bulk samples, can help to overcome the logistical limitations involved in sampling plant communities belowground. However, a major limitation of this methodology is the quantification of species' abundances based on the percentage of sequences assigned to each taxon. Using root tissues of five dominant species in a semi-arid Mediterranean shrubland (Bupleurum fruticescens, Helianthemum cinereum, Linum suffruticosum, Stipa pennata and Thymus vulgaris), we built pairwise mixtures of relative abundance (20%, 50% and 80% biomass), and implemented two methods (linear model fits and correction indices) to improve estimates of root biomass. We validated both methods with multispecies mixtures that simulate field-collected samples. For all species, we found a positive and highly significant relationship between the percentage of sequences and biomass in the mixtures (R2  = .44-.66), but the equations for each species (slope and intercept) differed among them, and two species were consistently over- and under-estimated. The correction indices greatly improved the estimates of biomass percentage for all five species in the multispecies mixtures, and reduced the overall error from 17% to 6%. Our results show that, through the use of post-sequencing quantification methods on mock communities, DNA metabarcoding can be effectively used to determine not only species' presence but also their relative abundance in field samples of root mixtures. Importantly, knowledge of these aspects will allow us to study key, yet poorly understood, belowground processes.


Assuntos
Biota , Código de Barras de DNA Taxonômico/métodos , Metagenômica/métodos , Plantas/classificação , Plantas/genética , DNA de Plantas/genética , Raízes de Plantas/classificação , Raízes de Plantas/genética
2.
PLoS One ; 13(2): e0192341, 2018.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29451871

RESUMO

We assessed the relative importance of dispersal limitation, environmental heterogeneity and their joint effects as determinants of the spatial patterns of 229 species in the moist tropical forest of Barro Colorado Island (Panama). We differentiated five types of species according to their dispersal syndrome; autochorous, anemochorous, and zoochorous species with small, medium-size and large fruits. We characterized the spatial patterns of each species and we checked whether they were best fitted by Inhomogeneous Poisson (IPP), Homogeneous Poisson cluster (HPCP) and Inhomogeneous Poisson cluster processes (IPCP) by means of the Akaike Information Criterion. We also assessed the influence of species' dispersal mode in the average cluster size. We found that 63% of the species were best fitted by IPCP regardless of their dispersal syndrome, although anemochorous species were best described by HPCP. Our results indicate that spatial patterns of tree species in this forest cannot be explained only by dispersal limitation, but by the joint effects of dispersal limitation and environmental heterogeneity. The absence of relationships between dispersal mode and degree of clustering suggests that several processes modify the original spatial pattern generated by seed dispersal. These findings emphasize the importance of fitting point process models with a different biological meaning when studying the main determinants of spatial structure in plant communities.


Assuntos
Florestas , Dispersão de Sementes , Clima Tropical , Madeira , Análise por Conglomerados , Panamá , Distribuição de Poisson
3.
Science ; 358(6364)2017 11 10.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29123035

RESUMO

The study by Bastin et al (Reports, 12 May 2017, p. 635) is based on an incomplete delimitation of dry forest distribution and on an old and incorrect definition of drylands. Its sampling design includes many plots located in humid ecosystems and ignores critical areas for the conservation of dry forests. Therefore, its results and conclusions may be unreliable.


Assuntos
Ecossistema , Florestas , Humanos
4.
Ecol Evol ; 6(2): 447-59, 2016 01.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-26843929

RESUMO

Understanding biological invasions patterns and mechanisms is highly needed for forecasting and managing these processes and their negative impacts. At small scales, ecological processes driving plant invasions are expected to produce a spatially explicit pattern driven by propagule pressure and local ground heterogeneity. Our aim was to determine the interplay between the intensity of seed rain, using distance to a mature plantation as a proxy, and microsite heterogeneity in the spreading of Pinus contorta in the treeless Patagonian steppe. Three one-hectare plots were located under different degrees of P. contorta invasion (Coyhaique Alto, 45° 30'S and 71° 42'W). We fitted three types of inhomogeneous Poisson models to each pine plot in an attempt for describing the observed pattern as accurately as possible: the "dispersal" models, "local ground heterogeneity" models, and "combined" models, using both types of covariates. To include the temporal axis in the invasion process, we analyzed both the pattern of young and old recruits and also of all recruits together. As hypothesized, the spatial patterns of recruited pines showed coarse scale heterogeneity. Early pine invasion spatial patterns in our Patagonian steppe site is not different from expectations of inhomogeneous Poisson processes taking into consideration a linear and negative dependency of pine recruit intensity on the distance to afforestations. Models including ground-cover predictors were able to describe the point pattern process only in a couple of cases but never better than dispersal models. This finding concurs with the idea that early invasions depend more on seed pressure than on the biotic and abiotic relationships seed and seedlings establish at the microsite scale. Our results show that without a timely and active management, P. contorta will invade the Patagonian steppe independently of the local ground-cover conditions.

5.
Oecologia ; 180(4): 975-87, 2016 Apr.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-26820565

RESUMO

Evaluating community assembly through the use of functional traits is a promising tool for testing predictions arising from Niche and Coexistence theories. Although interactions among neighboring species and their inter-specific differences are known drivers of coexistence with a strong spatial signal, assessing the role of individual species on the functional structure of the community at different spatial scales remains a challenge. Here, we ask whether individual species exert a measurable effect on the spatial organization of different functional traits in local assemblages. We first propose and compute two functions that describe different aspects of functional trait organization around individual species at multiple scales: individual weighted mean area relationship and individual functional diversity area relationship. Secondly, we develop a conceptual model on the relationship and simultaneous variation of these two metrics, providing five alternative scenarios in response to the ability of some target species to modify its neighbor environment and the possible assembly mechanisms involved. Our results show that some species influence the spatial structure of specific functional traits, but their effects were always restricted to the finest spatial scales. In the basis of our conceptual model, the observed patterns point to two main mechanisms driving the functional structure of the community at the fine scale, "biotic" filtering meditated by individual species and resource partitioning driven by indirect facilitation rather than by competitive mechanisms.


Assuntos
Meio Ambiente , Modelos Biológicos , Fenômenos Fisiológicos Vegetais , Biodiversidade , Fenótipo
7.
PLoS One ; 10(9): e0133701, 2015.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-26332681

RESUMO

Deforestation and fragmentation are major components of global change; both are contributing to the rapid loss of tropical forest area with important implications for ecosystem functioning and biodiversity conservation. The forests of South Ecuador are a biological 'hotspot' due to their high diversity and endemism levels. We examined the deforestation and fragmentation patterns in this area of high conservation value using aerial photographs and Aster satellite scenes. The registered annual deforestation rates of 0.75% (1976-1989) and 2.86% (1989-2008) for two consecutive survey periods, the decreasing mean patch size and the increasing isolation of the forest fragments show that the area is under severe threat. Approximately 46% of South Ecuador's original forest cover had been converted by 2008 into pastures and other anthropogenic land cover types. We found that deforestation is more intense at lower elevations (premontane evergreen forest and shrubland) and that the deforestation front currently moves in upslope direction. Improved awareness of the spatial extent, dynamics and patterns of deforestation and forest fragmentation is urgently needed in biologically diverse areas like South Ecuador.


Assuntos
Biodiversidade , Conservação dos Recursos Naturais , Ecossistema , Florestas , Equador , Clima Tropical
8.
New Phytol ; 204(1): 140-8, 2014 Oct.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-24954264

RESUMO

Two-phase plant communities with an engineer conforming conspicuous patches and affecting the performance and patterns of coexisting species are the norm under stressful conditions. To unveil the mechanisms governing coexistence in these communities at multiple spatial scales, we have developed a new point-raster approach of spatial pattern analysis, which was applied to a Mediterranean high mountain grassland to show how Festuca curvifolia patches affect the local distribution of coexisting species. We recorded 22 111 individuals of 17 plant perennial species. Most coexisting species were negatively associated with F. curvifolia clumps. Nevertheless, bivariate nearest-neighbor analyses revealed that the majority of coexisting species were confined at relatively short distances from F. curvifolia borders (between 0-2 cm and up to 8 cm in some cases). Our study suggests the existence of a fine-scale effect of F. curvifolia for most species promoting coexistence through a mechanism we call 'facilitation in the halo'. Most coexisting species are displaced to an interphase area between patches, where two opposite forces reach equilibrium: attenuated severe conditions by proximity to the F. curvifolia canopy (nutrient-rich islands) and competitive exclusion mitigated by avoiding direct contact with F. curvifolia.


Assuntos
Ecossistema , Festuca/fisiologia , Fenômenos Fisiológicos Vegetais , Biodiversidade , Região do Mediterrâneo , Espanha , Análise Espacial
9.
Am J Bot ; 100(12): 2339-48, 2013 Dec.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-24252216

RESUMO

PREMISE OF THE STUDY: The presence of compatible fungi is necessary for epiphytic orchid recruitment. Thus, identifying associated mycorrhizal fungi at the population level is essential for orchid conservation. Recruitment patterns may also be conditioned by factors such as seed dispersal range and specific environmental characteristics. METHODS: In a forest plot, all trees with a diameter at breast height >1 cm and all individuals of the epiphytic orchid Epidendrum rhopalostele were identified and mapped. Additionally, one flowering individual of E. rhopalostele per each host tree was randomly selected for root sampling and DNA extraction. KEY RESULTS: A total of 239 E. rhopalostele individuals were located in 25 of the 714 potential host trees. Light microscopy of sampled roots showed mycorrhizal fungi in 22 of the 25 sampled orchids. Phylogenetic analysis of ITS1-5.8S-ITS2 sequences yielded two Tulasnella clades. In four cases, plants were found to be associated with both clades. The difference between univariate and bivariate K functions was consistent with the random labeling null model at all spatial scales, indicating that trees hosting clades A and B of Tulasnella are not spatially segregated. The analysis of the inhomogenous K function showed that host trees are not clustered, suggesting no limitations to population-scale dispersal. χ(2) analysis of contingency tables showed that E. rhopalostele is more frequent on dead trees than expected. CONCLUSIONS: EPIDENDRUM RHOPALOSTELE establishes mycorrhizal associations with at least two different Tulasnella species. The analysis of the distribution patterns of this orchid suggests a microsite preference for dead trees and no seed dispersal limitation.


Assuntos
Basidiomycota/genética , Ecossistema , Micorrizas , Orchidaceae , Filogenia , Raízes de Plantas/microbiologia , Árvores , Sequência de Bases , Basidiomycota/classificação , DNA Fúngico , DNA Espaçador Ribossômico , Orchidaceae/crescimento & desenvolvimento , Orchidaceae/microbiologia , Dispersão Vegetal , Análise de Sequência de DNA , Especificidade da Espécie , Simbiose
10.
Fungal Biol ; 115(12): 1270-8, 2011 Dec.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-22115446

RESUMO

Persistence and abundance of species is determined by habitat availability and the ability to disperse and colonize habitats at contrasting spatial scales. Favourable habitat fragments are also heterogeneous in quality, providing differing opportunities for establishment and affecting the population dynamics of a species. Based on these principles, we suggest that the presence and abundance of epiphytes may reflect their dispersal ability, which is primarily determined by the spatial structure of host trees, but also by host quality. To our knowledge there has been no explicit test of the importance of host tree spatial pattern for epiphytes in Mediterranean forests. We hypothesized that performance and host occupancy in a favourable habitat depend on the spatial pattern of host trees, because this pattern affects the dispersal ability of each epiphyte and it also determines the availability of suitable sites for establishment. We tested this hypothesis using new point pattern analysis tools and generalized linear mixed models to investigate the spatial distribution and performance of the epiphytic lichen Lobaria pulmonaria, which inhabits two types of host trees (beeches and Iberian oaks). We tested the effects on L. pulmonaria distribution of tree size, spatial configuration, and host tree identity. We built a model including tree size, stand structure, and several neighbourhood predictors to understand the effect of host tree on L. pulmonaria. We also investigated the relative importance of spatial patterning on the presence and abundance of the species, independently of the host tree configuration. L. pulmonaria distribution was highly dependent on habitat quality for successful establishment, i.e., tree species identity, tree diameter, and several forest stand structure surrogates. For beech trees, tree diameter was the main factor influencing presence and cover of the lichen, although larger lichen-colonized trees were located close to focal trees, i.e., young trees. However, oak diameter was not an important factor, suggesting that bark roughness at all diameters favoured lichen establishment. Our results indicate that L. pulmonaria dispersal is not spatially restricted, but it is dependent on habitat quality. Furthermore, new spatial analysis tools suggested that L. pulmonaria cover exhibits a distinct pattern, although the spatial pattern of tree position and size was random.


Assuntos
Ecossistema , Fagus/crescimento & desenvolvimento , Especificidade de Hospedeiro , Líquens/fisiologia , Quercus/crescimento & desenvolvimento , Líquens/crescimento & desenvolvimento , Região do Mediterrâneo
11.
Genome ; 49(9): 1170-83, 2006 Sep.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-17110997

RESUMO

The genus Festuca comprises approximately 450 species and is widely distributed around the world. The Iberian Penninsula, with more than 100 taxa colonizing very diverse habitats, is one of its main centers of diversification. This study was conducted to assess molecular genetic variation and genetic relatedness among 91 populations of 31 taxa of Iberian fescues, based on several molecular markers (random amplified polymorphic DNA, amplified fragment length polymorphisms, and trnL sequences). The analyses showed the paraphyletic origin of the broad-leaved (subgenus Festuca, sections Scariosae and Subbulbosae, and subgenus Schedonorus) and the fine-leaved fescues (subgenus Festuca, sections Aulaxyper, Eskia, and Festuca). Schedonorus showed a weak relationship with Lolium rigidum and appeared to be the most recent of the broad-leaved clade. Section Eskia was the most ancient and Festuca the most recent of the fine-leaved clade. Festuca and Aulaxyper were the most related sections, in concordance with their taxonomic affinities. All taxa grouped into their sections, except F. ampla and F. capillifolia (section Festuca), which appeared to be more closely related to Aulaxyper and to a new independent section, respectively. Most populations clustered at the species level, but some subspecies and varieties mixed their populations. This study demonstrated the value in combining different molecular markers to uncover hidden genetic relationships between populations of Festuca.


Assuntos
Festuca/classificação , Festuca/genética , Impressões Digitais de DNA , Genes de Plantas , Marcadores Genéticos , Variação Genética , Íntrons , Filogenia , Técnica de Amplificação ao Acaso de DNA Polimórfico , Espanha
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