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Mass elevation effect and continentality have a stronger impact on global treelines than spatial isolation

Title data

Kienle, David ; Irl, Severin D. H. ; Beierkuhnlein, Carl:
Mass elevation effect and continentality have a stronger impact on global treelines than spatial isolation.
In: Global Ecology and Biogeography. Vol. 32 (2023) Issue 7 . - pp. 1087-1097.
ISSN 1466-822X
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/geb.13689

Official URL: Volltext

Abstract in another language

Abstract Aim The global relationship between treeline elevation and temperature (or latitude as a proxy) is well established. However, additional large-scale and regional abiotic influences such as mass elevation effect (MEE), continentality and isolation are superimposed onto the latitude-treeline relationship. To quantify these effects, we apply globally applicable measures and test the effects of MEE, an aspect of continental climate and isolation on treeline elevation. Location Global treeline elevations (n = 629). Methods We sampled treeline sites using earth observation. We calculated MEE as the distance to the nearest mountain chain limits. Continentality was assessed by the distance to the nearest coastline. Isolation was calculated by the nearest distance of a mountain chain to another mountain chain within a comparable elevational band. Results The global latitudinal pattern showed a distinct bimodal latitude-treeline elevation relationship. Treeline elevations increased substantially with increased MEE and distance to coastlines while isolation even decreased treeline elevations. Main Conclusions Our study shows a globally consistent effect of MEE and distance to the coastline on treeline elevation, contributing to our basic understanding of large-scale biogeographic processes governing treeline formation. MEE and continentality reduce cloudiness and increase solar radiation, resulting in higher treeline elevations. Isolation effects are not consistent and may be influenced by immigration and speciation. Understanding global treeline formation using comprehensive measures contributes to a better understanding of how environmental conditions determine vegetation boundaries at large spatial scales.

Further data

Item Type: Article in a journal
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: biome; continentality; isolation; mass elevation effect; Massenerhebungseffekt; treeline
Institutions of the University: Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences > Department of Earth Sciences > Chair Biogeography > Chair Biogeography - Univ.-Prof. Dr. Carl Beierkuhnlein
Research Institutions > Central research institutes > Bayreuth Center of Ecology and Environmental Research- BayCEER
Faculties
Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences
Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences > Department of Earth Sciences
Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences > Department of Earth Sciences > Chair Biogeography
Research Institutions
Research Institutions > Central research institutes
Result of work at the UBT: Yes
DDC Subjects: 500 Science > 550 Earth sciences, geology
Date Deposited: 28 Oct 2023 21:16
Last Modified: 30 Oct 2023 07:28
URI: https://eref.uni-bayreuth.de/id/eprint/87429