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Forests 2015, 6(12), 4439-4450; doi:10.3390/f6124380

Effects of Stand Origin and Near-Natural Restoration on the Stock and Structural Composition of Fallen Trees in Mid-Subtropical Forests

1
College of Forestry, Jiangxi Agricultural University, 1101 ZhiMin Road, Nanchang 330045, China
2
Earth and Environmental Science, University of British Columbia (Okanagan), 1177 Research Road, Kelowna, BC V1V 1V7, Canada
3
Key Laboratory of Vegetation Restoration and Management of Degraded Ecosystems, South China Botanical Garden, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Xingke Road 723, Tianhe District, Guangzhou 510650, China
4
School of Forestry and Bio-Technology, Zhejiang A & F University, Lin’an 311300, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Mark E. Harmon
Received: 30 September 2015 / Revised: 24 November 2015 / Accepted: 26 November 2015 / Published: 3 December 2015
(This article belongs to the Collection Forests Carbon Fluxes and Sequestration)
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Abstract

Fallen trees comprise an important part of forest ecosystems and serve a central role in maintaining the biodiversity and tree regeneration of forests. However, the effects of stand origin and near-natural restoration on the biomass and carbon stock of fallen trees remain unclear. Based on 60 sampling plots of field surveys of mid-subtropical forests in Jiangxi Province, we investigated the stock and structural composition of fallen trees in artificial coniferous forests (Acf), natural coniferous forests (Ncf) (e.g., different stand origins) and natural evergreen broadleaf forests (Nebf) (e.g., near-natural restoration). The following results were obtained: (1) the largest biomass and carbon stocks of fallen trees among three forest types (Nebf, Ncf and Acf) were measured for Nebf; (2) the fallen tree biomass and carbon stock in natural Cunninghamia lanceolata forest (Nclf) were significantly larger than that in artificial Cunninghamia lanceolata forest (Aclf), and the fallen tree biomass and carbon stock in natural Pinus massoniana forest (Npf) were also significantly larger than those in artificial Pinus massoniana forest (Apf); (3) the diameter class allocation in natural forests was more uniform than that in artificial forests; (4) the biomass of fallen trees with mild decay was not significantly different among forest types within stand origin or among the stand origin within forest types; however, the biomass of fallen trees with moderate and heavy decay significantly differed among stand origin (Aclf vs. Nclf, Apf vs. Npf), but was not significant among the forest types (Aclf vs. Apf, Nclf vs. Apf) within a stand origin. Our results suggested that the large biomass and carbon stock of fallen trees in Nebf may serve a significant role in mitigating global warming and carbon cycles in mid-subtropical forests. Therefore, stand origin and near-natural restoration exert significant effects on the carbon stock and structural composition of fallen trees in mid-subtropical forests. View Full-Text
Keywords: fallen tree; carbon; subtropical forest; stand origin; near-natural restoration fallen tree; carbon; subtropical forest; stand origin; near-natural restoration
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Wu, C.; Wei, X.; Mo, Q.; Li, Q.; Li, X.; Shu, C.; Liu, L.; Liu, Y. Effects of Stand Origin and Near-Natural Restoration on the Stock and Structural Composition of Fallen Trees in Mid-Subtropical Forests. Forests 2015, 6, 4439-4450.

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