Master of Science (MS)
First Advisor's Name
Kenneth J. Feeley
First Advisor's Committee Title
Second Advisor's Name
Steven F. Oberbauer
Third Advisor's Name
Jennifer H. Richards
cloudforest, plant functional traits, elevational gradient, root:shoot ratio, specific leaf area, Andes
Date of Defense
Andean montane forests are one of the most diverse ecosystems on Earth, but are also highly vulnerable to climate change. Therefore, the link between plant distribution and ecosystem productivity is a critical point to investigate in these ecosystems. Are the patterns in productivity observed in montane forest due to species turnover along the elevational gradients? Methodological constraints keep this question unanswered. Also, despite their importance, belowground biomass remains poorly quantified and understood. I measured two plant functional traits in seedlings, root:shoot ratio and specific leaf area, to identify different strategies in growth and biomass allocation across elevations. A tradeoff in specific leaf area with elevation was found in only one species, and no generalized directional change was detected with elevations for root:shoot ratio. Lack of information for the ontogeny of the measured plant traits could confounding the analysis.
Bravo Avila, Catherine Heidy, "Root:Shoot Ratio and Specific Leaf Area Along an Elevational Gradient in the Peruvian Andes" (2013). FIU Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 884.
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