Population dynamics of moss transplants across microclimatic gradients
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
In order to determine the response of a species to climatic change it is important to study how climatic factors influence its vital rates and population growth rate across climatic gradients. We investigated how microclimate influence the population dynamics of transplants from northern and more southern populations of the forest bryophyte Hylocomiastrum umbratum. We predicted that its population growth rate is favored by moist microclimates with colder maximum temperatures, longer snow cover duration and less evaporation, and that annual shoots (segments) will be shorter under drier conditions. We also predicted that northern populations will have higher population growth rate and larger segments than southern populations when transplanted to the northern range. We placed transplants from three northern and three southern populations of H. umbratum at 30 forested sites in central Sweden differing in microclimate. We marked and followed the growth of individual shoots during two years, and calculated population growth rates and stable stage distributions of segment size classes using transition matrix models for northern and southern transplants, respectively, at each locality. Population growth rate was lower and shorter segments developed at sites with higher evaporation, corresponding to our hypothesis. There were no significant difference in population growth rate and stable stage segment length between southern and northern populations. Higher evaporation during the summer result in lower population growth rates of H. umbratum by affecting vital rates, in terms of less segment growth. Both climate change and forestry may alter evaporation conditions across the landscape and, thus, the future distribution of the species.
population dynamics, vital rates, population growth rate, bryophytes, microclimate, evaporation, temperature, distributions, niche
Research subject Plant Ecology
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-129487OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-129487DiVA: diva2:922559