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Size-Structured Multi-Species Model of Rain Forest Trees

T. Kohyama
Functional Ecology
Vol. 6, No. 2 (1992), pp. 206-212
DOI: 10.2307/2389756
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2389756
Page Count: 7
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Size-Structured Multi-Species Model of Rain Forest Trees
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Abstract

On the basis of permanent plot research in a warm-temperate rain forest in southern Japan dominated by evergreen broad-leaved trees, a multi-species model of size-structured tree populations is proposed, which takes into account the effect of one-sided competition. The strength of the density effect due to one-sided competition for light on a forest tree of a given size is expressed in terms of the cumulative basal area of trees irrespective of species larger than this tree in the forest stand. The model does not assume the existence of species-to-species competition coefficients. Species differences are expressed in terms of potential size growth rate, susceptibility to suppression of size growth rate, mortality and recruitment rate. A one-dimensional drift equation is applied to express the dynamics of the size distributions of species. The model describes successfully secondary succession in an open system (allowing seed inflow from outside the plot). It also yields a stable coexistence in a closed system (without seed inflow) between three representative tree species, though it takes a long time (20 000 years) to attain equilibrium. Results suggest that size structure and one-sided competition for light stabilize forest tree communities.

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