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Scientific floras can be reliable sources for some trait data in a system with poor coverage in global trait databases

Title data

Cutts, Vanessa ; Hanz, Dagmar M. ; Barajas‐Barbosa, Martha P. ; Algar, Adam C. ; Steinbauer, Manuel ; Irl, Severin D. H. ; Kreft, Holger ; Weigelt, Patrick ; Fernandez Palacios, Jose María ; Field, Richard:
Scientific floras can be reliable sources for some trait data in a system with poor coverage in global trait databases.
In: Journal of Vegetation Science. Vol. 32 (2021) Issue 3 .
ISSN 1100-9233
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/jvs.12996

Abstract in another language

Aim
Trait‐based approaches are increasingly important in ecology and biogeography, but progress is often hampered by the availability of high‐quality quantitative trait data collected in the field. Alternative sources of trait information include scientific floras and taxonomic monographs. Here we test the reliability and usefulness of trait data acquired from scientific floras against trait values measured in the field, and those in TRY, the most comprehensive global plant trait database.
Location
Tenerife and La Palma, Canary Islands, Spain.
Methods
We measured leaf area and specific leaf area (SLA) in the field for 451 native vascular plant species and compared them with equivalent trait data digitised from the most recent and comprehensive guide of the Canarian flora, and data sourced from TRY. We regressed the field‐measured traits against their equivalents estimated from the literature and used the regression models from one island to predict the trait values on the other island.
Results
For leaf area, linear models showed good agreement between values from the scientific flora and those measured in the field (r2 = 0.86). These models were spatially transferable across islands. In contrast, for SLA we found a weak relationship between field‐measured values and the best estimates from the scientific flora (r2 = 0.11). Insufficient data were available in the TRY database for our study area to calculate trait correlations with other data sources.
Conclusions
Scientific floras can act as useful data sources for quantitative plant trait data for some traits but not others, whilst the TRY database contains many traits, but is incomplete in species coverage for our study region, and oceanic islands in general.

Further data

Item Type: Article in a journal
Refereed: Yes
Institutions of the University: Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences
Faculties > Faculty of Cultural Studies > Department of Sport Science > Professor Sport Ecology
Profile Fields > Advanced Fields > Ecology and the Environmental Sciences
Research Institutions > Research Centres > Bayreuth Center of Ecology and Environmental Research- BayCEER
Result of work at the UBT: Yes
DDC Subjects: 500 Science > 500 Natural sciences
500 Science > 570 Life sciences, biology
500 Science > 580 Plants (Botany)
Date Deposited: 10 May 2021 09:24
Last Modified: 10 May 2021 09:24
URI: https://eref.uni-bayreuth.de/id/eprint/65139