Biodiversity Science ›› 2016, Vol. 24 ›› Issue (4): 399-406.doi: 10.17520/biods.2015245

Special Issue: Plant Diversity in the Dry Valleys of Southwest China

• Original Papers • Previous Article     Next Article

Impacts of geographical distances and environmental differences on the beta diversity of plant communities in the dry-hot valley of the Yuanjiang River

Xinhui Li1, 2, Yanhong Liu1, 2, Ye Liu3, Yue Xu4, Yang Yang4, Zehao Shen4, *()   

  1. 1 College of Environmental Science and Technology, Southwest China Forestry University, Kunming 650224.
    2 National Station for Forest Ecosystem in Yuxi, Yuxi, Yunnan 653400.
    3 School of Urban Planning and Design, Shenzhen Graduate School, Peking University, Shenzhen, Guangdong 518055.
    4 Department of Ecology, College of Urban and Environmental Sciences, Key Laboratory for Earth Surface Processes of the Ministry of Education, Peking University, Beijing 100871
  • Received:2015-09-14 Accepted:2016-03-12 Online:2016-05-11
  • Shen Zehao

Beta diversity is the difference in species composition between locations. Recently, much of the published biodiversity research has focused on the assessment of beta diversity because it can be used to investigate community assembly and maintenance of species diversity. In this study, we investigated the impacts of dispersal limitation and habitat on the beta diversity of communities by sampling 41 plots throughout the dry-hot valley of Yuanjiang River. Taxonomic beta diversity and phylogenetic beta diversity were quantified using Jaccard dissimilarity, mean nearest taxon distance (MNTD), and mean pairwise distance (MPD). These indices were then related to the differences in environmental characteristics between sample plots and the geographical distances separating sample plots using multiple regression on distance matrices (MRM) and variance partitioning. The results showed that taxonomic and phylogenetic beta diversity indices significantly increased with the spatial distance and difference in mean annual temperature between communities; that taxonomic beta diversity and MNTD were most strongly influenced by spatial distance, whereas MPD was equally influenced by spatial distance and mean annual temperature difference between communities; and that only 11-13% of the variance in beta diversity was explained by the spatial distance and mean annual temperature difference between communities. These results highlight the effects of niche and dispersal limitations on beta diversity, and suggest that dispersal limitation may play a greater role than habitat differences between plant community locations. Additionally, human disturbances may greatly impact species composition along the dry-hot valley of the Yuanjiang River.

Key words: community assembly, phylogenetic beta diversity, niche, dispersal limitation, human disturbances

Fig. 1

Distribution of 41 sample sites along the dry-hot valley of the Yuanjiang River in Yunnan Province"

Fig. 2

Phylogenetic tree with branch lengths for the sample plants in the dry-hot valley of the Yuanjiang River. Based on the phylogenetic tree of Zanne et al (2014)."

Fig. 3

Relationships between beta diversity and the differences in mean annual temperature, mean annual precipitation and geographical distance in sample sites"

Fig. 4

Percentage of variance of beta diversity across 41 plots explained by the differences in mean annual temperature, mean annual precipitation, and geographical distance in sample sites (Values < 0 not shown). A, Jaccard dissimilarity; B, Mean pairwise distance; C, Mean nearest taxon distance."

1 Bellier E, Grotan V, Engen S, Schartau AK, Herfindal I, Finstad AG (2014) Distance decay of similarity, effects of environmental noise and ecological heterogeneity among species in the spatio-temporal dynamics of a dispersal-limited community. Ecography, 37, 172-182.
2 Bin Y, Wang ZG, Wang ZM, Ye WH, Cao HL, Lian JY (2010) The effects of dispersal limitation and topographic heterogeneity on beta diversity and phylobetadiversity in a subtropical forest. Plant Ecology, 209, 237-256.
3 Burrascano S, Anzellotti I, Carli E, del Vico E, Facioni L, Pretto F, Sabatini FM, Tilia A, Blasi C (2013) Drivers of beta-diversity variation in Bromus erectus semi-natural dry grasslands. Applied Vegetation Science, 16, 404-416.
4 Cavender-Bares J, Keen A, Miles B (2006) Phylogenetic structure of Floridian plant communities depends on taxonomic and spatial scale. Ecology, 87, S109-S122.
5 Chen GQ, Qiang S (2011) Human activities are the principle cause of biotic homogenization. Acta Ecologica Sinica, 31, 4107-4116.(in Chinese with English abstract)
[陈国奇, 强胜 (2011) 人类活动是导致生物均质化的主要因素. 生态学报,31, 4107-4116.]
6 Chen SB, Ouyang ZY, Xu WH, Xiao Y (2010) A review of beta diversity studies. Biodiversity Science, 18, 323-335.(in Chinese with English abstract)
[陈圣宾, 欧阳志云, 徐卫华, 肖燚 (2010) Beta多样性研究进展. 生物多样性, 18, 323-335.]
7 Condit R, Pitman N, Leigh EG, Chave J, Terborgh J, Foster RB, Nunez P, Aguilar S, Valencia R, Villa G, Muller-Landau HC, Losos E, Hubbell SP (2002) Beta-diversity in tropical forest trees. Science, 295, 666-669.
8 de Cáceres M, Legendre P, Valencia R, Cao M, Chang LW, Chuyong G, Condit R, Hao ZQ, Hsieh CF, Hubbell S, Kenfack D, Ma KP, Mi XC, Noor MNS, Kassim AR, Ren HB, Su SH, Sun IF, Thomas DC, Ye WH, He FL (2012) The variation of tree beta diversity across a global network of forest plots. Global Ecology and Biogeography, 21, 1191-1202.
9 Dornelas M, Gotelli NJ, McGill B, Shimadzu H, Moyes F, Sievers C, Magurran AE (2014) Assemblage time series reveal biodiversity change but not systematic loss. Science, 344, 296-299.
10 Fernandez-Going BM, Harrison SP, Anacker BL, Safford HD (2013) Climate interacts with soil to produce beta diversity in Californian plant communities. Ecology, 94, 2007-2018.
11 Goslee SC, Urban DL (2007) The ecodist package for dissimilarity-based analysis of ecological data. Journal of Statistical Software, 22, 1-19.
12 Graham CH, Fine PVA (2008) Phylogenetic beta diversity: linking ecological and evolutionary processes across space in time. Ecology Letters, 11, 1265-1277.
13 Harrison S, Ross SJ, Lawton JH (1992) Beta diversity on geographic gradients in Britain. Journal of Animal Ecology, 61, 151-158.
14 He YB, Lu PZ, Zhu T (2000) Causes for the formation of dry-hot valleys in Hengduan Mountain-Yunnan Plateau. Resources Science, 22(5), Chinese with English abstract)
( [何永彬, 卢培泽, 朱彤 (2000) 横断山-云南高原干热河谷形成原因研究. 资源科学, 22(5), 69-72.]
15 Hijmans RJ, Cameron SE, Parra JL, Jones PG, Jarvis A (2005) Very high resolution interpolated climate surfaces for global land areas. International Journal of Climatology, 25, 1965-1978.
16 Jin ZZ (1999) A phytosociological study on the semi-savanna vegetation in the dry-hot valleys of Yuanjiang River, Yunnan. Guihaia, 19, 289-302.(in Chinese with English abstract)
[金振洲 (1999) 云南元江干热河谷半萨王纳植被的植物群落学研究. 广西植物, 19, 289-302.]
17 Jin ZZ (2002) Floristic Features of Dry-hot and Dry-warm Valleys, Yunnan and Sichuan. Yunnan Science and Technology Press, Kunming.(in Chinese)
[金振洲 (2002) 滇川干热河谷与干暖河谷植物区系特征. 云南科技出版社, 昆明.]
18 Kembel SW, Cowan PD, Helmus MR, Cornwell WK, Morlon H, Ackerly DD, Blomberg SP, Webb CO (2010) Picante: R tools for integrating phylogenies and ecology. Bioinformatics, 26, 1463-1464.
19 Kraft NJB, Valencia R, Ackerly DD (2008) Functional traits and niche-based tree community assembly in an Amazonian forest. Science, 322, 580-582.
20 Kubota Y, Hirao T, Fujii SJ, Murakami M (2011) Phylogenetic beta diversity reveals historical effects in the assemblage of the tree floras of the Ryukyu Archipelago. Journal of Biogeography, 38, 1006-1008.
21 Lichstein JW (2007) Multiple regression on distance matrices: a multivariate spatial analysis tool. Plant Ecology, 188, 117-131.
22 Niu HY, Wang ZF, Lian JY, Ye WH, Shen H (2011) New progress in community assembly: community phylogenetic structure combining evolution and ecology. Biodiversity Science, 19, 275-283.(in Chinese with English abstract)
[牛红玉, 王峥峰, 练琚愉, 叶万辉, 沈浩 (2011) 群落构建研究的新进展: 进化和生态相结合的群落谱系结构研究. 生物多样性, 19, 275-283.]
23 Oksanen J, Blanchet FG, Kindt R, Legendre P, Minchin PR, O’Hara RB, Simpson GL, Solymos P, Henry M, Stevens H, Wagner H (2013) vegan: Community Ecology Package. R package version 2.0-10.
24 Olivier PI, van Aarde RJ (2014) Multi-scale sampling boosts inferences from beta diversity patterns in coastal forests of South Africa. Journal of Biogeography, 41, 1428-1439.
25 Peres-Neto PR, Legendre P, Dray S, Borcard D (2006) Variation partitioning of species data matrices, estimation and comparison of fractions. Ecology, 87, 2614-2625.
26 Qian H (2001) A comparison of generic endemism of vascular plants between East Asia and North America. International Journal of Plant Sciences, 162, 191-199.
27 Qian H (2009) Beta diversity in relation to dispersal ability for vascular plants in North America. Global Ecology and Biogeography, 18, 327-332.
28 Qian H, Kissling WD (2010) Spatial scale and cross-taxon congruence of terrestrial vertebrate and vascular plant species richness in China. Ecology, 91, 1172-1183.
29 Qian H, Swenson NG, Zhang J (2013) Phylogenetic beta diversity of angiosperms in North America. Global Ecology and Biogeography, 22, 1152-1161.
30 Smith TW, Lundholm JT (2010) Variation partitioning as a tool to distinguish between niche and neutral processes. Ecography, 33, 648-655.
31 Svenning JC, Flojgaard C, Baselga A (2011) Climate, history and neutrality as drivers of mammal beta diversity in Europe: insights from multiscale deconstruction. Journal of Animal Ecology, 80, 393-402.
32 Swenson NG (2011) Phylogenetic beta diversity metrics, trait evolution and inferring the functional beta diversity of communities. PLoS ONE, 6, e21264.
33 Swenson NG, Enquist BJ, Pither J, Thompson J, Zimmerman JK (2006) The problem and promise of scale dependency in community phylogenetics. Ecology, 87, 2418-2424.
34 Tuomisto H, Ruokolainen K, Kalliola R, Linna A, Danjoy W, Rodriguez Z (1995) Dissecting Amazonian biodiversity. Science, 269, 63-66.
35 Tuomisto H, Ruokolainen K, Yli-Halla M (2003) Dispersal, environment, and floristic variation of western Amazonian forests. Science, 299, 241-244.
36 Valencia R, Foster RB, Villa G, Condit R, Svenning JC, Hernandez C, Romoleroux K, Losos E, Magard E, Balslev H (2004) Tree species distributions and local habitat variation in the Amazon: large forest plot in eastern Ecuador. Journal of Ecology, 92, 214-229.
37 Vavrek MJ (2011) Fossil: palaeoecological and palaeogeographical analysis tools. Palaeontologia Electronica, 14,.
38 Webb CO (2000) Exploring the phylogenetic structure of ecological communities: an example for rain forest trees. The American Naturalist, 156, 145-155.
39 Webb CO, Ackerly DD, Kembel SW (2008) Phylocom: software for the analysis of phylogenetic community structure and trait evolution. Bioinformatics, 24, 2098-2100.
40 Webb CO, Donoghue MJ (2005) Phylomatic: tree assembly for applied phylogenetics. Molecular Ecology Notes, 5, 181-183.
41 Whittaker RH (1960) Vegetation of the Siskiyou Mountains, Oregon and California. Ecological Monographs, 30, 279-338.
42 Wikström N, Savolainen V, Chase MW (2001) Evolution of the angiosperms: calibrating the family tree. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 268, 2211-2220.
43 WuZY(1980) Vegetation of China. Science Press, Beijing.(in Chinese)
[吴征镒 (1980) 中国植被. 科学出版社, 北京.]
44 Zanne AE, Tank DC, Cornwell WK, Eastman JM, Smith SA, FitzJohn RG, McGlinn DJ, O’Meara BC, Moles AT, Reich PB, Royer DL, Soltis DE, Stevens PF, Westoby M, Wright IJ, Aarssen L, Bertin RI, Calaminus A, Govaerts R, Hemmings F, Leishman MR, Oleksyn J, Soltis PS, Swenson NG, Warman L, Beaulieu JM (2014) Three keys to the radiation of angiosperms into freezing environments. Nature, 506, 89-92.
45 Zhang JL, Swenson NG, Chen SB, Liu XJ, Li ZS, Huang JH, Mi XC, Ma KP (2013) Phylogenetic beta diversity in tropical forests: implications for the roles of geographical and environmental distance. Journal of Systematics and Evolution, 51, 71-85.
[1] HU Wan,ZHANG Zhi-Yong,CHEN Lu-Dan,PENG Yan-Song,WANG Xu. (2020) Changes in potential geographical distribution of Tsoongiodendron odorum since the Last Glacial Maximum . Chin J Plant Ecol, 44(1): 44-55.
[2] SHI Jing-Jing,ZHAO Ming-Fei,WANG Yu-Hang,XUE Feng,KANG Mu-Yi,JIANG Yuan. (2019) Community assembly of herbaceous layer of the planted forests in the central Loess Plateau, China . Chin J Plant Ecol, 43(9): 834-842.
[3] XU Jin-Shi,CHAI Yong-Fu,LIU Xiao,YUE Ming,GUO Yao-Xin,KANG Mu-Yi,LIU Quan-Ru,ZHENG Cheng-Yang,JI Cheng-Jun,YAN Ming,ZHANG Feng,GAO Xian-Ming,WANG Ren-Qing,SHI Fu-Chen,ZHANG Qin-Di,WANG Mao. (2019) Community assembly, diversity patterns and distributions of broad-leaved forests in North China . Chin J Plant Ecol, 43(9): 732-741.
[4] CHAI Yong-Fu,XU Jin-Shi,LIU Hong-Yan,LIU Quan-Ru,ZHENG Cheng-Yang,KANG Mu-Yi,LIANG Cun-Zhu,WANG Ren-Qing,GAO Xian-Ming,ZHANG Feng,SHI Fu-Chen,LIU Xiao,YUE Ming. (2019) Species composition and phylogenetic structure of major shrublands in North China . Chin J Plant Ecol, 43(9): 793-805.
[5] TANG Li-Li,ZHANG Mei,ZHAO Xiang-Lin,KANG Mu-Yi,LIU Hong-Yan,GAO Xian-Ming,YANG Tong,ZHENG Pu-Fan,SHI Fu-Chen. (2019) Species distribution and community assembly rules of Juglans mandshurica in North China . Chin J Plant Ecol, 43(9): 753-761.
[6] Hai-Sheng Yuan, Yulian Wei, Liwei Zhou, Wenmin Qin, Baokai Cui, Shuanghui He. (2019) Potential distribution and ecological niches of four butt-rot pathogenic fungi in Northeast China . Biodiv Sci, 27(8): 873-879.
[7] Gui Xujun, Lian Juyu, Zhang Ruyun, Li Yanpeng, Shen Hao, Ni Yunlong, Ye Wanhui. (2019) Vertical structure and its biodiversity in a subtropical evergreen broad- leaved forest at Dinghushan in Guangdong Province, China . Biodiv Sci, 27(6): 619-629.
[8] Liu Xiangyu, Zhao Ciliang, Xu Mingshan, Liang Qiming, Zhu Xiaotong, Li Liang, Yan Enrong. (2019) Beta diversity of vascular plants and its drivers in sea-islands of eastern China . Biodiv Sci, 27(4): 380-387.
[9] Jiang Huan, Zhang Hui, Long Wenxing, Fang Yanshan, Fu Mingqi, Zhu Kongxin. (2019) Interspecific associations and niche characteristics of communities invaded by Decalobanthus boisianus . Biodiv Sci, 27(4): 388-399.
[10] CHENG Yi-Kang, ZHANG Hui, WANG Xu, LONG Wen-Xing, LI Chao, FANG Yan-Shan, FU Ming-Qi, ZHU Kong-Xin. (2019) Effects of functional diversity and phylogenetic diversity on the tropical cloud forest community assembly . Chin J Plant Ecol, 43(3): 217-226.
[11] HAO Shu-Jun, LI Xiao-Yu, HOU Man-Man, ZHAO Xiu-Hai. (2019) Spatial variations of community functional traits at different successional stages in temperate forests of Changbai Mountains, Northeast China . Chin J Plant Ecol, 43(3): 208-216.
[12] Fan Jingyu, Li Hanpeng, Yang Zhuo, Zhu Gengping. (2019) Selecting the best native individual model to predict potential distribution of Cabomba caroliniana in China . Biodiv Sci, 27(2): 140-148.
[13] WEN Chun,JIN Guang-Ze. (2019) Effects of functional diversity on productivity in a typical mixed broadleaved-Korean pine forest . Chin J Plant Ecol, 43(2): 94-106.
[14] LIU Jin-Liang, YU Ming-Jian. (2019) Community assembly processes in fragmented forests and its testing methods . Chin J Plant Ecol, 43(11): 929-945.
[15] Weng Changlu,Zhang Tiantian,Wu Donghao,Chen Shengwen,Jin Yi,Ren Haibao,Yu Mingjian,Luo Yuanyuan. (2019) Drivers and patterns of α- and β-diversity in ten main forest community types in Gutianshan, eastern China . Biodiv Sci, 27(1): 33-41.
Full text