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Data from: Responses of biomass allocation across two vegetation types to climate fluctuations in the northern Qinghai-Tibet Plateau

Citation

Dai, Licong et al. (2020), Data from: Responses of biomass allocation across two vegetation types to climate fluctuations in the northern Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.2t14h9r

Abstract

The Qinghai-Tibet Plateau (QTP) is particularly sensitive to global climate change, especially to elevated temperatures, when compared with other ecosystems. However, few studies use long-term field measurements to explore the interannual variations in plant biomass under climate fluctuations. Here, we examine the interannual variations of plant biomass within two vegetation types (alpine meadow and alpine shrub) during 2008-2017 and their relationships with climate variables. The following results were obtained. The aboveground biomass (AGB) and belowground biomass (BGB) response differently to climate fluctuations, the AGB in KPM was dominated by mean annual precipitation (MAP), whereas the AGB in PFS was controlled by mean annual air temperature (MAT). However, the BGB of both KPM and PFS was only weakly affected by climate variables, suggesting that the BGB in alpine ecosystems may remain as a stable carbon stock even under future global climate change. Furthermore, the AGB in PFS was significantly higher than KPM, while the BGB and R/S in KPM were significantly higher than PFS, reflecting the KPM be more likely to allocate more photosynthates to roots. Interestingly, the proportion of 0-10 cm root biomass increased in KPM and PFS, whereas the other proportions both decreased, reflecting a shift in biomass towards the surface layer. Our results could provide a new sight for the prediction how alpine ecosystem response to future climate change.

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