Jump to Main Content
The relative contributions of intra- and inter-specific variation in driving community stoichiometric responses to nitrogen deposition and mowing in a grassland
- Hou, Shuang-Li, Lü, Xiao-Tao, Yin, Jiang-Xia, Yang, Jun-Jie, Hu, Yan-Yu, Wei, Hai-Wei, Zhang, Zhi-Wei, Yang, Guo-Jiao, Liu, Zhuo-Yi, Han, Xing-Guo
- The Science of the total environment 2019 v.666 pp. 887-893
- arid lands, biogeochemical cycles, grasslands, mowing, nitrogen, nitrogen content, phosphorus
- The stoichiometric characteristics of plant communities are important controller for several fundamental ecological processes. The effects of environmental changes on community stoichiometric characteristics are driven by intra- and inter-specific variation. However, the relative importance of both pathways has seldom been empirically examined.We quantified the relative contribution of intra- and inter-specific variation to the changes of community nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) concentrations after seven-year factorial N addition and mowing treatments in a semi-arid grassland of northern China.Nitrogen addition significantly increased community N and P concentrations and N:P ratio. Mowing significantly increased community N concentration and N:P. Intra-specific variation contributed more than inter-specific variation to the total variability of all the nutritional and stoichiometric characteristics, with intra-specific variation accounting for 68%, 70%, and 75% of the total variation in community-level N, P, and N:P, respectively. Negative covariations between the contribution of intra- and inter-specific variation occurred for community N and P concentrations. Further, N addition and mowing interacted to affect the impacts of intra- and inter-specific variation on community N concentration and N:P stoichiometry.Our results highlight different ways of trait selection for N addition and mowing treatments. Interactions between those two factors make it more difficult to accurately predict the responses of plant-mediated biogeochemical cycles under co-occurrence of environmental changes.