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Incident radiation and the allocation of nitrogen within Arctic plant canopies : implications for predicting gross primary productivity

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dc.contributor.author Street, Lorna E.
dc.contributor.author Shaver, Gaius R.
dc.contributor.author Rastetter, Edward B.
dc.contributor.author van Wijk, Mark T.
dc.contributor.author Kaye, Brooke A.
dc.contributor.author Williams, Mathew
dc.date.accessioned 2012-11-27T21:19:04Z
dc.date.available 2012-11-27T21:19:04Z
dc.date.issued 2012-01
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/1912/5583
dc.description Author Posting. © The Author(s), 2012. This is the author's version of the work. It is posted here by permission of John Wiley & Sons for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Global Change Biology 18 (2012): 2838–2852, doi:10.1111/j.1365-2486.2012.02754.x. en_US
dc.description.abstract Arctic vegetation is characterized by high spatial variability in plant functional type (PFT) composition and gross primary productivity (P). Despite this variability, the two main drivers of P in sub-Arctic tundra are leaf area index (LT) and total foliar nitrogen (NT). LT and NT have been shown to be tightly coupled across PFTs in sub-Arctic tundra vegetation, which simplifies up-scaling by allowing quantification of the main drivers of P from remotely sensed LT. Our objective was to test the LT–NT relationship across multiple Arctic latitudes and to assess LT as a predictor of P for the pan-Arctic. Including PFT-specific parameters in models of LT–NT coupling provided only incremental improvements in model fit, but significant improvements were gained from including site-specific parameters. The degree of curvature in the LT–NT relationship, controlled by a fitted canopy nitrogen extinction co-efficient, was negatively related to average levels of diffuse radiation at a site. This is consistent with theoretical predictions of more uniform vertical canopy N distributions under diffuse light conditions. Higher latitude sites had higher average leaf N content by mass (NM), and we show for the first time that LT–NT coupling is achieved across latitudes via canopy-scale trade-offs between NM and leaf mass per unit leaf area (LM). Site-specific parameters provided small but significant improvements in models of P based on LT and moss cover. Our results suggest that differences in LT–NT coupling between sites could be used to improve pan-Arctic models of P and we provide unique evidence that prevailing radiation conditions can significantly affect N allocation over regional scales. en_US
dc.description.sponsorship This work was supported by grants from the US National Science Foundation to the Marine Biological Laboratory including grants # OPP-0352897, DEB-0423385, and DEB-0444592. en_US
dc.format.mimetype application/pdf
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.relation.uri http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2486.2012.02754.x
dc.subject Carbon balance en_US
dc.subject Climate change en_US
dc.subject Gross primary production en_US
dc.subject Diffuse radiation en_US
dc.subject Tundra vegetation en_US
dc.subject CO2 flux en_US
dc.subject Specific leaf area en_US
dc.subject Light extinction en_US
dc.subject Nitrogen extinction en_US
dc.title Incident radiation and the allocation of nitrogen within Arctic plant canopies : implications for predicting gross primary productivity en_US
dc.type Preprint en_US


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