Chin J Plant Ecol ›› 2012, Vol. 36 ›› Issue (11): 1165-1171.DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1258.2012.01165

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Responses of net primary productivity to air temperature change in forests dominated by different mycorrhizal strategies

SHI Zhao-Yong1,2,*(), WANG Fa-Yuan1, MIAO Yan-Fang1   

  1. 1College of Agricultural, He’nan University of Science and Technology, Luoyang 471003, China;
    2Laboratory for Earth Surface Processes, Ministry of Education, Peking University, Beijing 100871, China
  • Received:2012-06-26 Revised:2012-08-28 Online:2012-06-26 Published:2012-11-09
  • Contact: SHI Zhao-Yong


Aims Mycorrhizae, as the symbiotic associations between plant roots and mycorrhizal fungi, are almost ubiquitous. Mycorrhizal fungi play a crucial role in the regulation of terrestrial net primary production carbon dioxide (CO2) fluxes and respond strongly to climatic changes in temperature. Our objective was to explore how interannual variations in air temperature influence net primary productivity (NPP) in global forest ecosystems that are classified by the mycorrhizae of the dominant plants.
Methods A new database was established including NPP and mean annual air temperature (MAT) of forests dominated by different mycorrhizal strategies based on an existing global forest database. We used this new database to study the responses of NPP of forests dominated by different mycorrhizal strategies to air temperature change.
Important findings Total NPP, aboveground NPP and belowground NPP increased with the increase of MAT, although the slopes were different in forests dominated by different mycorrhizal types. Total NPP increased with the rise of MAT in forests dominated by all mycorrhizal strategies out of arbuscular mycorrhiza (AM) and AM + ectomycorrhiza (ECM) + ectendomycorrhiza (EEM). The responses of above- and below-ground NPP of forests to the variation of MAT changed depending on mycorrhizal strategies of dominate forest tree species. The MAT explained 57.27% of the variation of aboveground NPP in AM + ECM forest. Significant regressions between belowground NPP and MAT were observed in ECM and ECM + EEM forests. NPP values of main stem, tree leaf and fine root tended to either increase or decrease with the increase of MAT in the different forests. As far as the comparison between AM and ECM forest was concerned, the NPP, including total NPP and each part, was more sensitive to air temperature change in forest dominated by ECM than forest dominated by AM. We conclude that different mycorrhizae affected the responses of forest NPP to air temperature change by influencing the extent of response of various parts of forest NPP to air temperature change. The mycorrhizal symbiosis makes this vital for accurate prediction of future changes of forest NPP with change of air temperature.

Key words: air temperature change, forest, mycorrhizal type, net primary productivity (NPP), response