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(Reference retrieved automatically from Web of Science through information on FAPESP grant and its corresponding number as mentioned in the publication by the authors.)

El Nino drought increased canopy turnover in Amazon forests

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Leitold, Veronika [1, 2] ; Morton, Douglas C. [1] ; Longo, Marcos [3] ; dos-Santos, Maiza Nara [3] ; Keller, Michael [3, 4, 5] ; Scaranello, Marcos [3]
Total Authors: 6
[1] NASA, Goddard Space Flight Ctr, Greenbelt, MD 20771 - USA
[2] Univ Maryland, Dept Geog Sci, College Pk, MD 20742 - USA
[3] Embrapa Informat Agr, BR-13083886 Campinas, SP - Brazil
[4] NASA, Jet Prop Lab, Pasadena, CA 91109 - USA
[5] US Forest Serv, USDA, Int Inst Trop Forestry, Rio Piedras, PR 00926 - USA
Total Affiliations: 5
Document type: Journal article
Source: NEW PHYTOLOGIST; v. 219, n. 3, SI, p. 959-971, AUG 2018.
Web of Science Citations: 18

Amazon droughts, including the 2015-2016 El Nino, may reduce forest net primary productivity and increase canopy tree mortality, thereby altering both the short- and the long-term net forest carbon balance. Given the broad extent of drought impacts, inventory plots or eddy flux towers may not capture regional variability in forest response to drought. We used multi-temporal airborne Lidar data and field measurements of coarse woody debris to estimate patterns of canopy turnover and associated carbon losses in intact and fragmented forests in the central Brazilian Amazon between 2013-2014 and 2014-2016. Average annualized canopy turnover rates increased by 65% during the drought period in both intact and fragmented forests. The average size and height of turnover events was similar for both time intervals, in contrast to expectations that the 2015-2016 El Nino drought would disproportionally affect large trees. Lidar-biomass relationships between canopy turnover and field measurements of coarse woody debris were modest (R-2 approximate to 0.3), given similar coarse woody debris production and Lidar-derived changes in canopy volume from single tree and multiple branch fall events. Our findings suggest that El Nino conditions accelerated canopy turnover in central Amazon forests, increasing coarse woody debris production by 62% to 1.22 Mg Cha(-1) yr(-1) in drought years . (AU)

FAPESP's process: 15/07227-6 - Long term effects of forest degradation on carbon cycling in Amazonia
Grantee:Marcos Longo
Support type: Scholarships in Brazil - Post-Doctorate