Effect of grazing and nitrogen addition on the occurrence of species with different seed masses in alpine meadows on the Tibet Plateau

Shuxia Li, Shiting Zhang, Carol C. Baskin, Zhilong Zhang, Sa Xiao, Haiyan Bu, Yang Liu, Tingting Zhang, Si Chen, Qian Liu, Kun Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Seed mass (SM) is a core functional trait of plant species. Thus, information of the effect of grazing and nitrogen addition on the occurrence of species with different SMs can help us understand the influence of grazing and fertilization on survival of species and community assembly. In alpine meadows with different grazing and nitrogen addition treatments on the eastern Tibet Plateau, we measured SM and plant height (H) of the most common plants and conducted a series of quadrat surveys. Overall, grazing promoted survival of small-seeded species, while fertilization suppressed their survival. At the community level, moderate grazing reduced the average community weighted mean (CWM) of SM and increased the coefficient of variation (CV) of SM. However, there was no significant difference between the functional diversity (FDrao, calculated as Rao's index) of SM in grazed and nongrazed meadows. Nitrogen addition significantly increased the CWM of SM, had a marginally significant effect on FDrao of SM, but had no significant effect on CV of SM. The impact of gazing and fertilization on occurrence of species with different SMs can be explained by their effect on vegetation height. From the perspective of SM selection, our study helps clarify the mechanism of species diversity loss due to fertilization, and that of species diversity increase by moderate grazing.

Original languageEnglish
Article number156531
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Volume838
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 10 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was funded by the NSFC (Grant numbers 31670437 , 31760132 , 32171518 , 31870412 , 41830321 , 32071532 ).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Elsevier B.V.

Keywords

  • Alpine meadow
  • Grazing
  • Nitrogen addition
  • Seed mass
  • Tibet plateau

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution

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