Geographical ecology of dry forest tree communities in the West Indies

Janet Franklin, Riley Andrade, Mark L. Daniels, Patrick Fairbairn, Maria C. Fandino, Thomas W. Gillespie, Grizelle González, Otto Gonzalez, Daniel Imbert, Valerie Kapos, Daniel L. Kelly, Humfredo Marcano-Vega, Elvia J. Meléndez-Ackerman, Kurt P. Mclaren, Morag A. Mcdonald, Julie Ripplinger, Julissa Rojas-Sandoval, Michael S. Ross, Jorge Ruiz, David W. Steadman & 3 others Edmund V.J. Tanner, Inge Terrill, Michel Vennetier

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Aim: Seasonally dry tropical forest (SDTF) of the Caribbean Islands (primarily West Indies) is floristically distinct from Neotropical SDTF in Central and South America. We evaluate whether tree species composition was associated with climatic gradients or geographical distance. Turnover (dissimilarity) in species composition of different islands or among more distant sites would suggest communities structured by speciation and dispersal limitations. A nested pattern would be consistent with a steep resource gradient. Correlation of species composition with climatic variation would suggest communities structured by broad-scale environmental filtering. Location: The West Indies (The Bahamas, Cuba, Hispaniola, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, US Virgin Islands, Guadeloupe, Martinique, St. Lucia), Providencia (Colombia), south Florida (USA) and Florida Keys (USA). Taxon: Seed plants-woody taxa (primarily trees). Methods: We compiled 572 plots from 23 surveys conducted between 1969 and 2016. Hierarchical clustering of species in plots, and indicator species analysis for the resulting groups of sites, identified geographical patterns of turnover in species composition. Nonparametric analysis of variance, applied to principal components of bioclimatic variables, determined the degree of covariation in climate with location. Nestedness versus turnover in species composition was evaluated using beta diversity partitioning. Generalized dissimilarity modelling partitioned the effect of climate versus geographical distance on species composition. Results: Despite a set of commonly occurring species, SDTF tree community composition was distinct among islands and was characterized by spatial turnover on climatic gradients that covaried with geographical gradients. Greater Antillean islands were characterized by endemic indicator species. Northern subtropical areas supported distinct, rather than nested, SDTF communities in spite of low levels of endemism. Main conclusions: The SDTF species composition was correlated with climatic variation. SDTF on large Greater Antillean islands (Hispaniola, Jamaica and Cuba) was characterized by endemic species, consistent with their geological history and the biogeography of plant lineages. These results suggest that both environmental filtering and speciation shape Caribbean SDTF tree communities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Biogeography
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2018

Fingerprint

dry forest
dry forests
forest trees
tropical forests
ecology
species diversity
tropical forest
Hispaniola
Jamaica
Cuba
turnover
indicator species
Virgin Islands of the United States
indigenous species
Providencia
Martinique
nestedness
climate
Guadeloupe
Bahamas

Keywords

  • Beta diversity
  • Caribbean
  • Community composition
  • Seasonally dry tropical forest
  • Species turnover
  • Tropical dry forest
  • West Indies

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Ecology

Cite this

Franklin, J., Andrade, R., Daniels, M. L., Fairbairn, P., Fandino, M. C., Gillespie, T. W., ... Vennetier, M. (Accepted/In press). Geographical ecology of dry forest tree communities in the West Indies. Journal of Biogeography. https://doi.org/10.1111/jbi.13198

Geographical ecology of dry forest tree communities in the West Indies. / Franklin, Janet; Andrade, Riley; Daniels, Mark L.; Fairbairn, Patrick; Fandino, Maria C.; Gillespie, Thomas W.; González, Grizelle; Gonzalez, Otto; Imbert, Daniel; Kapos, Valerie; Kelly, Daniel L.; Marcano-Vega, Humfredo; Meléndez-Ackerman, Elvia J.; Mclaren, Kurt P.; Mcdonald, Morag A.; Ripplinger, Julie; Rojas-Sandoval, Julissa; Ross, Michael S.; Ruiz, Jorge; Steadman, David W.; Tanner, Edmund V.J.; Terrill, Inge; Vennetier, Michel.

In: Journal of Biogeography, 01.01.2018.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Franklin, J, Andrade, R, Daniels, ML, Fairbairn, P, Fandino, MC, Gillespie, TW, González, G, Gonzalez, O, Imbert, D, Kapos, V, Kelly, DL, Marcano-Vega, H, Meléndez-Ackerman, EJ, Mclaren, KP, Mcdonald, MA, Ripplinger, J, Rojas-Sandoval, J, Ross, MS, Ruiz, J, Steadman, DW, Tanner, EVJ, Terrill, I & Vennetier, M 2018, 'Geographical ecology of dry forest tree communities in the West Indies', Journal of Biogeography. https://doi.org/10.1111/jbi.13198
Franklin J, Andrade R, Daniels ML, Fairbairn P, Fandino MC, Gillespie TW et al. Geographical ecology of dry forest tree communities in the West Indies. Journal of Biogeography. 2018 Jan 1. https://doi.org/10.1111/jbi.13198
Franklin, Janet ; Andrade, Riley ; Daniels, Mark L. ; Fairbairn, Patrick ; Fandino, Maria C. ; Gillespie, Thomas W. ; González, Grizelle ; Gonzalez, Otto ; Imbert, Daniel ; Kapos, Valerie ; Kelly, Daniel L. ; Marcano-Vega, Humfredo ; Meléndez-Ackerman, Elvia J. ; Mclaren, Kurt P. ; Mcdonald, Morag A. ; Ripplinger, Julie ; Rojas-Sandoval, Julissa ; Ross, Michael S. ; Ruiz, Jorge ; Steadman, David W. ; Tanner, Edmund V.J. ; Terrill, Inge ; Vennetier, Michel. / Geographical ecology of dry forest tree communities in the West Indies. In: Journal of Biogeography. 2018.
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AU - Andrade, Riley

AU - Daniels, Mark L.

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AU - Gillespie, Thomas W.

AU - González, Grizelle

AU - Gonzalez, Otto

AU - Imbert, Daniel

AU - Kapos, Valerie

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AU - Rojas-Sandoval, Julissa

AU - Ross, Michael S.

AU - Ruiz, Jorge

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N2 - Aim: Seasonally dry tropical forest (SDTF) of the Caribbean Islands (primarily West Indies) is floristically distinct from Neotropical SDTF in Central and South America. We evaluate whether tree species composition was associated with climatic gradients or geographical distance. Turnover (dissimilarity) in species composition of different islands or among more distant sites would suggest communities structured by speciation and dispersal limitations. A nested pattern would be consistent with a steep resource gradient. Correlation of species composition with climatic variation would suggest communities structured by broad-scale environmental filtering. Location: The West Indies (The Bahamas, Cuba, Hispaniola, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, US Virgin Islands, Guadeloupe, Martinique, St. Lucia), Providencia (Colombia), south Florida (USA) and Florida Keys (USA). Taxon: Seed plants-woody taxa (primarily trees). Methods: We compiled 572 plots from 23 surveys conducted between 1969 and 2016. Hierarchical clustering of species in plots, and indicator species analysis for the resulting groups of sites, identified geographical patterns of turnover in species composition. Nonparametric analysis of variance, applied to principal components of bioclimatic variables, determined the degree of covariation in climate with location. Nestedness versus turnover in species composition was evaluated using beta diversity partitioning. Generalized dissimilarity modelling partitioned the effect of climate versus geographical distance on species composition. Results: Despite a set of commonly occurring species, SDTF tree community composition was distinct among islands and was characterized by spatial turnover on climatic gradients that covaried with geographical gradients. Greater Antillean islands were characterized by endemic indicator species. Northern subtropical areas supported distinct, rather than nested, SDTF communities in spite of low levels of endemism. Main conclusions: The SDTF species composition was correlated with climatic variation. SDTF on large Greater Antillean islands (Hispaniola, Jamaica and Cuba) was characterized by endemic species, consistent with their geological history and the biogeography of plant lineages. These results suggest that both environmental filtering and speciation shape Caribbean SDTF tree communities.

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