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Demographic response to light environment of all species in the Barro Colorado plot: recruitment, growth, and mortality

Citation

Rüger, Nadja; Hubbell, Stephen P.; Condit, Richard (2022), Demographic response to light environment of all species in the Barro Colorado plot: recruitment, growth, and mortality, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.7291/D16M46

Abstract

We measured growth, death, and recruitment of 250,000 individual trees of 300 species in the Barro Colorado 50-ha plot in Panama. To understand how light limits demography, we also carried out a detailed map of the light environment across the 50 hectares, providing an estimate of the light at the top of every tree in the plot (Rüger et al. 2009, 2011ab, 2012, 2018, 2020).

These tables combine results from the three main studies on the demographic responses of tree species to light, covering recruitment, growth, and mortality. Each study was based on rigorous statistical estimates of demographic rate parameters as a function of available light across most species in the forest. The model parameters provided here allow demographic rates of every species to be estimated under any light condition, and at any diameter, for example, growth rate of 5-cm trees in 3% light, or death rate of 2-cm trees in 10% light.

Most useful is a single table that provides estimated responses in a consistent way across all species covering recruitment, growth, and mortality. The response is defined as the ratio of species performance at high light to performance at low light, and thus describes how every species responds to increase in light caused by treefall gaps in the canopy. These response parameters offer comprehensive demographic traits on more than 90% of the species in the forest.

The references provide context and describe the models in detail.

References:

Condit, R., 1998. Tropical Forest Census Plots: Methods and Results from Barro Colorado Island, Panama and a Comparison with Other Plots. Springer-Verlag, Berlin.

Rüger, N., A. Huth, S.P. Hubbell, and R. Condit. 2009. Response of recruitment to light availability across a tropical lowland rainforest community. Journal of Ecology 97: 1360–1368.

Rüger, N., U. Berger, S.P. Hubbell, G. Vieilledent, and R. Condit. 2011a. Growth strategies of tropical tree species: Disentangling light and size effects. PLoS ONE 6(9): e25330.

Rüger, N., A. Huth, S.P. Hubbell, and R. Condit. 2011b. Determinants of mortality across a tropical lowland rainforest community. Oikos 120: 1047–1056.

Rüger, N., C. Wirth, S.J. Wright, and R. Condit. 2012. Functional traits explain light and size response of growth rates in tropical tree species. Ecology 93: 2626–2636.

Rüger, N., L. S. Comita, R. Condit, D. Purves, B. Rosenbaum, M. D. Visser, S. J. Wright, and C. Wirth. 2018. Beyond the fast–slow continuum: demographic dimensions structuring a tropical tree community. Ecology Letters 21:1075–1084.

Rüger, N., R. Condit, D. H. Dent, S. J. DeWalt, S. P. Hubbell, O. R. Lopez, C. Wirth, and C. E. Farrior. 2020. Demographic trade-offs predict tropical forest dynamics. Science 368:165–168.

Methods

See Condit (1998) and Rüger et al. (2009)

Usage Notes

Download README.pdf for descriptions of the tables and equations needed to calculate predicted demographic rates.

Funding