Time filter

Source Type

Apeldoorn, Netherlands

Jactel H.,French National Institute for Agricultural Research | Branco M.,University of Lisbon | Duncker P.,Albert Ludwigs University of Freiburg | Gardiner B.,Japan Forestry and Forest Products Research Institute | And 9 more authors.
Ecology and Society

Due to climate change, forests are likely to face new hazards, which may require adaptation of our existing silvicultural practices. However, it is difficult to imagine a forest management approach that can simultaneously minimize all risks of damage. Multicriteria decision analysis (MCDA) has been developed to help decision makers choose between actions that require reaching a compromise among criteria of different weights. We adapted this method and produced a multicriteria risk analysis (MCRA) to compare the risk of damage associated with various forest management systems with a range of management intensity. The objective was to evaluate the effect of four forest management alternatives (FMAs) (i.e., close to nature, extensive management with combined objectives, intensive even-aged plantations, and short-rotation forestry for biomass production) on biotic and abiotic risks of damage in eight regional case studies combining three forest biomes (Boreal, Continental, Atlantic) and five tree species (Eucalyptus globulus, Pinus pinaster, Pinus sylvestris, Picea sitchensis, and Picea abies) relevant to wood production in Europe. Specific forest susceptibility to a series of abiotic (wind, fire, and snow) and biotic (insect pests, pathogenic fungi, and mammal herbivores) hazards were defined by expert panels and subsequently weighted by corresponding likelihood. The PROMETHEE ranking method was applied to rank the FMAs from the most to the least at risk. Overall, risk was lower in short-rotation forests designed to produce wood biomass, because of the reduced stand susceptibility to the most damaging hazards. At the opposite end of the management intensity gradient, close-to-nature systems also had low overall risk, due to lower stand value exposed to damage. Intensive even-aged forestry appeared to be subject to the greatest risk, irrespective of tree species and bioclimatic zone. These results seem to be robust as no significant differences in relative ranking of the four FMAs were detected between the combinations of forest biomes and tree species. © 2012 by the author(s). Source

Brienen R.J.W.,University of Leeds | Gloor E.,University of Leeds | Zuidema P.A.,Programa de Manejo de Bosques de la Amazonia Boliviana | Zuidema P.A.,University Utrecht | Zuidema P.A.,Center for Ecosystem Studies
Global Biogeochemical Cycles

Tree ring analysis allows reconstructing historical growth rates over long periods. Several studies have reported an increasing trend in ring widths, often attributed to growth stimulation by increasing atmospheric CO 2 concentration. However, these trends may also have been caused by sampling biases. Here we describe two biases and evaluate their magnitude. (1) The slow-grower survivorship bias is caused by differences in tree longevity of fast-and slow-growing trees within a population. If fast-growing trees live shorter, they are underrepresented in the ancient portion of the tree ring data set. As a result, reconstructed growth rates in the distant past are biased toward slower growth. (2) The big-tree selection bias is caused by sampling only the biggest trees in a population. As a result, slow-growing small trees are underrepresented in recent times as they did not reach the minimum sample diameter. We constructed stochastic models to simulate growth trajectories based on a hypothetical species with lifetime constant growth rates and on observed tree ring data from the tropical tree Cedrela odorata. Tree growth rates used as input in our models were kept constant over time. By mimicking a standard tree ring sampling approach and selecting only big living trees, we show that both biases lead to apparent increases in historical growth rates. Increases for the slow-grower survivorship bias were relatively small and depended strongly on assumptions about tree mortality. The big-tree selection bias resulted in strong historical increases, with a doubling in growth rates over recent decades. A literature review suggests that historical growth increases reported in many tree ring studies may have been partially due to the big-tree sampling bias. We call for great caution in the interpretation of historical growth trends from tree ring analyses and recommend that such studies include individuals of all sizes. Copyright 2012 by the American Geophysical Union. Source

Vialatte A.,CNRS Ecosystems, Biodiversity, and Evolution Laboratory | Bailey R.I.,CNRS Ecosystems, Biodiversity, and Evolution Laboratory | Bailey R.I.,Uppsala University | Vasseur C.,CNRS Ecosystems, Biodiversity, and Evolution Laboratory | And 8 more authors.
Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences

A host may be physically isolated in space and then may correspond to a geographical island, but it may also be separated from its local neighbours by hundreds of millions of years of evolutionary history, and may form in this case an evolutionarily distinct island. We test how this affects the assembly processes of the host's colonizers, this question being until now only invoked at the scale of physically distinct islands or patches. We studied the assembly of true bugs in crowns of oaks surrounded by phylogenetically more or less closely related trees. Despite the short distances (less than 150 m) between phylogenetically isolated and non-isolated trees, we found major differences between their Heteroptera faunas. We show that phylogenetically isolated trees support smaller numbers and fewer species of Heteroptera, an increasing proportion of phytophages and a decreasing proportion of omnivores, and proportionally more non-hostspecialists. These differences were not due to changes in the nutritional quality of the trees, i.e. species sorting, which we accounted for. Comparison with predictions from meta-community theories suggests that the assembly of local Heteroptera communities may be strongly driven by independent metapopulation processes at the level of the individual species. We conclude that the assembly of communities on hosts separated from their neighbours by long periods of evolutionary history is qualitatively and quantitatively different from that on hosts established surrounded by closely related trees. Potentially, the biotic selection pressure on a host might thus change with the evolutionary proximity of the surrounding hosts. © 2010 The Royal Society. Source

Kleijn D.,Center for Ecosystem Studies | Munster V.J.,Erasmus Medical Center | Munster V.J.,National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases | Ebbinge B.S.,Center for Ecosystem Studies | And 4 more authors.
Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences

Recent outbreaks of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) in poultry have raised interest in the interplay between avian influenza (AI) viruses and their wild hosts. Studies linking virus ecology to host ecology are still scarce, particularly for non-duck species. Here, we link capture-resighting data of greater white-fronted geese Anser albifrons albifrons with the AI virus infection data collected during capture in The Netherlands in four consecutive winters. We ask what factors are related to AI virus prevalence and whether there are ecological consequences associated with AI virus infection in staging white-fronted geese. Mean seasonal (low pathogenic) AI virus prevalence ranged between 2.5 and 10.7 per cent, among the highest reported values for non-duck species, and occurred in distinct peaks with near-zero prevalence before and after. Throat samples had a 2.4 times higher detection frequency than cloacal samples. AI virus infection was significantly related to age and body mass in some but not other winters. AI virus infection was not related to resighting probability, nor to maximum distance travelled, which was at least 191 km during the short infectious lifespan of an AI virus. Our results suggest that transmission via the respiratory route could be an important transmission route of AI virus in this species. Nearzero prevalence upon arrival on their wintering grounds, in combination with the epidemic nature of AI virus infections in white-fronted geese, suggests that white-fronted geese are not likely to disperse Asian AI viruses from their Siberian breeding grounds to their European wintering areas. © 2010 The Royal Society. Source

Discover hidden collaborations