Biodiversity Science ›› 2006, Vol. 14 ›› Issue (1): 21-28.doi: 10.1360/biodiv.050146

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The relationship between species richness and productivity in four typical grasslands of northern China

Wenhong Ma*, Jingyun Fang   

  1. Department of Ecology, College of Environmental Sciences, Center for Ecological Research & Education, and Key Laboratory for Earth Surface Processes of the Ministry of Education, Peking University, Beijing 100871
  • Received:2005-07-01 Revised:2005-12-21 Online:2006-01-20
  • Wenhong Ma

The relationship between plant species diversity and primary productivity has long been a hot topic in biodiversity research. We examined the relationship between species richness and productivity in four typical grasslands of northern China at different spatial scales. At the community scale, a positive correlation was found for six of seven communities, and a unimodal pattern was found only for one community (Stipa glareosa community). At large scale (vegetation type or landscape/region), a significant positive relationship was found. Species richness ranged from 4 to 35 species, and community above-ground productivity from 13 to 368 g·m–2·yr–1. The highest species richness and above-ground productivity were found in the alpine meadow community, followed by meadow steppe, typical steppe and desert steppe.

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