Biodiv Sci ›› 2020, Vol. 28 ›› Issue (4): 455-462.  DOI: 10.17520/biods.2019403

• Original Papers: Plant Diversity • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Spatio-temporal dynamics of leaf litter in a karst seasonal rainforest in southwest Guangxi

Mengke Jia1,2,3,Yili Guo1,3,*(),Dongxing Li1,3,Bin Wang1,3,Wusheng Xiang1,3,Ailong Wang4,Shengyuan Liu4,Tao Ding1,3,Fuzhao Huang1,3,Shujun Wen1,3,Shuhua Lu1,3,Xiankun Li1,3,*()   

  1. 1 Guangxi Key Laboratory of Plant Conservation and Restoration Ecology in Karst Terrain, Guangxi Institute of Botany, Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region and Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guilin, Guangxi 541006
    2 College of Life Sciences, Guangxi Normal University, Guilin, Guangxi 541006
    3 Guangxi Youyiguan Forest Ecosystem National Research Station, Pingxiang, Guangxi 532699
    4 Administration of Nonggang National Nature Reserve of Guangxi, Longzhou, Guangxi 532400
  • Received:2019-12-19 Accepted:2020-03-31 Online:2020-04-20 Published:2020-06-15
  • Contact: Yili Guo,Xiankun Li


Leaf litter production is a major contributor to ecosystem net primary productivity and biogeochemical cycles. However, various abiotic and biotic drivers influence leaf litter production in heterogeneous natural forests. In this study, we quantified leaf litter production, composition, and spatio-temporal dynamics in a 15 ha forest dynamics plot in Nonggang National Nature Reserve, Guangxi. We set up 90 litter fall traps and collected leaf litter weekly beginning in May 2012. We explored the spatial and temporal dynamics of leaf litter production in order to gain an in-depth understanding of the material circulation process of forest ecosystem in this region. Ecological factors had significant influence on the inter-annual dynamics of leaf litter volume and explained 69.3% of the cumulative deviation. The effect of altitude on leaf litter was the strongest, explaining 46.5% of the deviation. However, biological factors, such as the coefficient of variation of DBH, the sum of stand basal area per unit area, and species-richness, had smaller effect sizes on annual leaf litter production. Years of continuous monitoring show that there are obvious differences in the leaf litter production between years in karst seasonal rainforests, but abiotic factors, such as altitude, heavily influence leaf litter production.

Key words: karst seasonal rainforests, leaf litter production, annual difference, rhythmicity, ecological factors