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Article

Relationship between Canopy Structure and Community Structure of the Understory Trees in a Beech Forest in Japan

1
Doctoral Program in Biology, Degree Programs in Life and Earth Sciences, Graduate School of Science and Technology, University of Tsukuba, Tsukuba 305-8577, Japan
2
Faculty of Education, Shinshu University, Nagano 380-8544, Japan
3
Faculty of Life and Environmental Sciences, University of Tsukuba, Tsukuba 305-8577, Japan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Pedro Álvarez-Álvarez
Forests 2022, 13(4), 494; https://doi.org/10.3390/f13040494
Received: 15 February 2022 / Revised: 18 March 2022 / Accepted: 21 March 2022 / Published: 22 March 2022
Understory trees occupy a spatially heterogeneous light environment owing to light interception by patchily distributed canopy leaves. We examined the spatial distribution of canopy leaves and the spatial structure of the understory tree community (height < 5 m) and their relationships in a beech forest in Nagano, Japan. We measured the canopy leaf area index (LAI) at 10 m intervals (n = 81) in a permanent research plot (1 ha). We established a circular subplot centered on each LAI measurement point, and determined the species composition and the aboveground net primary production of wood (ANPPW) of the understory tree community by using tree size data from an open database in the Monitoring Sites 1000 project. There was a significant negative correlation between canopy LAI and the ANPPW of understory trees and a significant positive correlation between the ANPPW of understory and understory tree density. The dominant species of understory trees differed between subplots with high and low LAI values. Our results suggest that niche differentiation allows trees in the understory community to make use of various light conditions, thereby enhancing the primary productivity of the entire community. View Full-Text
Keywords: forest strata; leaf area index; net primary production; diversity; specific leaf area; Monitoring Sites 1000 forest strata; leaf area index; net primary production; diversity; specific leaf area; Monitoring Sites 1000
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MDPI and ACS Style

Tanioka, Y.; Ida, H.; Hirota, M. Relationship between Canopy Structure and Community Structure of the Understory Trees in a Beech Forest in Japan. Forests 2022, 13, 494. https://doi.org/10.3390/f13040494

AMA Style

Tanioka Y, Ida H, Hirota M. Relationship between Canopy Structure and Community Structure of the Understory Trees in a Beech Forest in Japan. Forests. 2022; 13(4):494. https://doi.org/10.3390/f13040494

Chicago/Turabian Style

Tanioka, Yosuke, Hideyuki Ida, and Mitsuru Hirota. 2022. "Relationship between Canopy Structure and Community Structure of the Understory Trees in a Beech Forest in Japan" Forests 13, no. 4: 494. https://doi.org/10.3390/f13040494

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