Skip to Main content Skip to Navigation
Journal articles

Contrasting effects of defaunation on aboveground carbon storage across the global tropics

Abstract : Defaunation is causing declines of large-seeded animal-dispersed trees in tropical forests worldwide, but whether and how these declines will affect carbon storage across this biome is unclear. Here we show, using a pan-tropical data set, that simulated declines of large-seeded animal-dispersed trees have contrasting effects on aboveground carbon stocks across Earth’s tropical forests. In our simulations, African, American and South Asian forests, which have high proportions of animal-dispersed species, consistently show carbon losses (2–12%), but Southeast Asian and Australian forests, where there are more abiotically dispersed species, show little to no carbon losses or marginal gains (±1%). These patterns result primarily from changes in wood volume, and are underlain by consistent relationships in our empirical data (B2,100 species), wherein, large-seeded animal-dispersed species are larger as adults than small-seeded animal-dispersed species, but are smaller than abiotically dispersed species. Thus, floristic differences and distinct dispersal mode–seed size–adult size combinations can drive contrasting regional responses to defaunation.
Complete list of metadata
Contributor : Saravanan Govindaraj Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Wednesday, August 31, 2016 - 9:21:54 AM
Last modification on : Wednesday, November 3, 2021 - 9:51:54 AM




Anand M. Osuri, Jayashree Ratnam, Varun Varma, Patricia Alvarez-Loayza, Johanna Hurtado Astaiza, et al.. Contrasting effects of defaunation on aboveground carbon storage across the global tropics. Nature Communications, Nature Publishing Group, 2016, 7, ⟨10.1038/ncomms11351⟩. ⟨hal-01358088⟩



Record views