Chin J Plan Ecolo ›› 2016, Vol. 40 ›› Issue (9): 861-870.doi: 10.17521/cjpe.2015.0400

• Research Articles •     Next Articles

Scale-dependent spatial patterns of species diversity in the tropical montane rain forest in Jianfengling, Hainan Island, China

Yan-Peng LI1, Han XU1,*(), Yi-De LI1, Tu-Shou LUO1, De-Xiang CHEN1, Zhang ZHOU1, Ming-Xian LIN2, Huai YANG2   

  1. 1Research Institute of Tropical Forestry, Chinese Academy of Forestry, Guangzhou 510520, China
    2Experimental Station of Research Institute of Tropical Forestry, Chinese Academy of Forestry, Ledong, Hainan 572542, China
  • Received:2015-11-10 Accepted:2016-07-23 Online:2016-09-29 Published:2016-09-10
  • Contact: Han XU


Aims Spatial distribution patterns and formation mechanisms of species diversity are fundamental issues in community ecology. The objectives of this study are to assess the species diversity patterns at the different spatial scales in Jianfengling, Hainan Island, China.
Methods Based on the dataset from the 60 hm2 plot in the tropical montane rain forest in Jianfengling, Hainan Island, the spatial distribution patterns of species richness, species abundance, Shannon-Wiener, Simpson and Pielou’s evenness indices were analyzed at six spatial scales, including 5 m × 5 m, 10 m × 10 m, 20 m × 20 m, 40 m × 40 m, 100 m × 100 m, and 200 m × 200 m, respectively.Important findings
Results showed that spatial distribution patterns of species richness, species abundance and Shannon-Wiener index were much more obviously changed with the spatial scales than Simpson and Pielou’s evenness indices. Change of variance of the species richness with the increase of spatial scales was unimodal, which had the maximum value at the 20 m × 20 m scale. Variance of the species abundance showed a linear relationship with the increase of spatial scales. The positive relationship between species richness and abundance gradually decreased and even disappeared with the increase of sampling scales, which may be correlated with the increase of habitat heterogeneity. The effects of spatial scales on Shannon-Wiener, Simpson, and Pielou’s evenness indices may be also correlated with the composition of rare species in the plot.

Key words: Hainan, Jianfengling, tropical montane rain forest, species diversity, sampling scale, spatial distribution patterns

Fig. 1

Topography of the 60 hm2 Jianfengling Forest Dynamics Plot on Hainan Island."

Fig. 2

Spatial distribution patterns of species richness (A-F) and abundance (G-L) at different scales. The sidebars represented the values of species richness or abundance at different plots, respectively."

Table 1

Spearman rank correlation coefficients between species richness and abundance at different spatial scales"

取样尺度 Sampling scales 5 m × 5 m 10 m × 10 m 20 m × 20 m 40 m × 40 m 100 m × 100 m 200 m × 200 m
相关系数 Correlation coefficients 0.917 0.873 0.735 0.319 -0.024 0.300
样方数 Number of quadrats 24 000 6 000 1 500 375 60 15
p 0.000 0.000 0.000 0.000 0.856 0.277

Fig. 3

Spatial distribution patterns of Shannon-Wiener (A-F) and Simpson indices (G-L) at different scales. The sidebars represented the values of Shannon-Wiener or Simpson indices at different plots, respectively."

Fig. 4

Spatial distribution patterns of Pielou’s evenness index at different scales. The sidebars represented the values of Pielou’s evenness index at different plots."

Fig. 5

Spatial variation of species richness (A, B) and abundance (C, D) at different scales."

Fig. 6

Spatial variation of Shannon-Wiener (A, B), Simpson (C, D) and Pielou’s evenness indices (E, F) at different scales."

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