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Appears in Collections:Biological and Environmental Sciences Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: Soil resistance and recovery during Neotropical forest succession
Author(s): van der Sande, Masha T
Powers, Jennifer S
Kuyper, Thom W
Norden, Natalia
Salgado-Negret, Beatriz
Silva de Almeida, Jarcilene
Bongers, Frans
Delgado, Diego
Dent, Daisy H
Derroire, Géraldine
Marcos do Espírito Santo, Mário
Dupuy, Juan M
Wilson Fernandes, Geraldo
Jones, Isabel L
Poorter, Lourens
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Keywords: soil
tropical forest
carbon, pH
bulk density
Issue Date: 2-Jan-2023
Date Deposited: 26-Jul-2022
Citation: van der Sande MT, Powers JS, Kuyper TW, Norden N, Salgado-Negret B, Silva de Almeida J, Bongers F, Delgado D, Dent DH, Derroire G, Marcos do Espírito Santo M, Dupuy JM, Wilson Fernandes G, Jones IL & Poorter L (2023) Soil resistance and recovery during Neotropical forest succession. <i>Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences</i>, 378 (1867), Art. No.: 20210074.
Abstract: The recovery of soil conditions is crucial for successful ecosystem restoration and, hence, for achieving the goals of the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration. Here, we assess how soils resist forest conversion and agricultural land use, and how soils recover during subsequent tropical forest succession on abandoned agricultural fields. Our overarching question is how soil resistance and recovery depend on local conditions such as climate, soil type, and land use history. For 300 plots in 21 sites across the Neotropics, we used a chonosequence approach in which we sampled soils from two depths in old-growth forests, agricultural fields (i.e., crop fields and pastures), and secondary forests that differ in age (1-95 years) since abandonment. We measured six soil properties using a standardized sampling design and lab analyses. Soil resistance strongly depended on local conditions. Croplands and sites on high activity clay (i.e. high fertility) show strong increases in bulk density, and decreases in pH, carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) during deforestation and subsequent agricultural use. Resistance is lower in such sites probably because of a sharp decline in fine root biomass in croplands in the upper soil layers, and a decline in litter input from formerly productive old-growth forest (on high-activity clays). Soil recovery also strongly depended on local conditions. During forest succession, high-activity clays and croplands decreased most strongly in bulk density and increased in C and N, possibly because of strongly compacted soils with low C and N after cropland abandonment, and because of rapid vegetation recovery in high-activity clays leading to greater fine root growth and litter input. Furthermore, sites at low precipitation decreased in pH, whereas sites at high precipitation increased in N and decreased in C:N ratio. Extractable phosphorus (P) did not recover during succession, suggesting increased P limitation as forests age. These results indicate that no single solution exists for effective soil restoration, and that local site conditions should determine the restoration strategies.
DOI Link: 10.1098/rstb.2021.0074
Rights: © 2022 The Authors. Published by the Royal Society under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, provided the original author and source are credited.
Notes: Additional co-authors: Bryan Finegan, Mayra E. Gavito, José Luis Hernández-Stefanoni, Catarina C. Jakovac, Maria das Dores Magalhães Veloso, Jorge A. Meave, Francisco Mora, Rodrigo Muñoz, Nathalia Pérez-Cárdenas, Daniel Piotto, Esteban Álvarez-Dávila, Yasmani Caceres-Siani, Coralie Dalban-Pilon, Aurélie Dourdain, Dan V. Du, Daniel García Villalobos, Yule Roberta Ferreira Nunes, Arturo Sanchez-Azofeifa
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