Regional grassland productivity responses to precipitation during multiyear above- and below-average rainfall periods

Matthew D. Petrie, Debra P.C. Peters, Jin Yao, John M. Blair, Nathan D. Burruss, Scott L. Collins, Justin D. Derner, Laureano A. Gherardi, John R. Hendrickson, Osvaldo Sala, Patrick J. Starks, Jean L. Steiner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

There is considerable uncertainty in the magnitude and direction of changes in precipitation associated with climate change, and ecosystem responses are also uncertain. Multiyear periods of above- and below-average rainfall may foretell consequences of changes in rainfall regime. We compiled long-term aboveground net primary productivity (ANPP) and precipitation (PPT) data for eight North American grasslands, and quantified relationships between ANPP and PPT at each site, and in 1–3 year periods of above- and below-average rainfall for mesic, semiarid cool, and semiarid warm grassland types. Our objective was to improve understanding of ANPP dynamics associated with changing climatic conditions by contrasting PPT–ANPP relationships in above- and below-average PPT years to those that occurred during sequences of multiple above- and below-average years. We found differences in PPT–ANPP relationships in above- and below-average years compared to long-term site averages, and variation in ANPP not explained by PPT totals that likely are attributed to legacy effects. The correlation between ANPP and current- and prior-year conditions changed from year to year throughout multiyear periods, with some legacy effects declining, and new responses emerging. Thus, ANPP in a given year was influenced by sequences of conditions that varied across grassland types and climates. Most importantly, the influence of prior-year ANPP often increased with the length of multiyear periods, whereas the influence of the amount of current-year PPT declined. Although the mechanisms by which a directional change in the frequency of above- and below-average years imposes a persistent change in grassland ANPP require further investigation, our results emphasize the importance of legacy effects on productivity for sequences of above- vs. below-average years, and illustrate the utility of long-term data to examine these patterns.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1935-1951
Number of pages17
JournalGlobal Change Biology
Volume24
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2018

Fingerprint

Precipitation (meteorology)
Rain
Productivity
grassland
productivity
rainfall
ecosystem response
Climate change
Ecosystems
climate change
climate

Keywords

  • climate change
  • grassland dynamics
  • grassland productivity
  • legacy effects
  • precipitation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Global and Planetary Change
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Ecology
  • Environmental Science(all)

Cite this

Petrie, M. D., Peters, D. P. C., Yao, J., Blair, J. M., Burruss, N. D., Collins, S. L., ... Steiner, J. L. (2018). Regional grassland productivity responses to precipitation during multiyear above- and below-average rainfall periods. Global Change Biology, 24(5), 1935-1951. https://doi.org/10.1111/gcb.14024

Regional grassland productivity responses to precipitation during multiyear above- and below-average rainfall periods. / Petrie, Matthew D.; Peters, Debra P.C.; Yao, Jin; Blair, John M.; Burruss, Nathan D.; Collins, Scott L.; Derner, Justin D.; Gherardi, Laureano A.; Hendrickson, John R.; Sala, Osvaldo; Starks, Patrick J.; Steiner, Jean L.

In: Global Change Biology, Vol. 24, No. 5, 01.05.2018, p. 1935-1951.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Petrie, MD, Peters, DPC, Yao, J, Blair, JM, Burruss, ND, Collins, SL, Derner, JD, Gherardi, LA, Hendrickson, JR, Sala, O, Starks, PJ & Steiner, JL 2018, 'Regional grassland productivity responses to precipitation during multiyear above- and below-average rainfall periods', Global Change Biology, vol. 24, no. 5, pp. 1935-1951. https://doi.org/10.1111/gcb.14024
Petrie, Matthew D. ; Peters, Debra P.C. ; Yao, Jin ; Blair, John M. ; Burruss, Nathan D. ; Collins, Scott L. ; Derner, Justin D. ; Gherardi, Laureano A. ; Hendrickson, John R. ; Sala, Osvaldo ; Starks, Patrick J. ; Steiner, Jean L. / Regional grassland productivity responses to precipitation during multiyear above- and below-average rainfall periods. In: Global Change Biology. 2018 ; Vol. 24, No. 5. pp. 1935-1951.
@article{f71e775c7a884e009ca6531d114d46dd,
title = "Regional grassland productivity responses to precipitation during multiyear above- and below-average rainfall periods",
abstract = "There is considerable uncertainty in the magnitude and direction of changes in precipitation associated with climate change, and ecosystem responses are also uncertain. Multiyear periods of above- and below-average rainfall may foretell consequences of changes in rainfall regime. We compiled long-term aboveground net primary productivity (ANPP) and precipitation (PPT) data for eight North American grasslands, and quantified relationships between ANPP and PPT at each site, and in 1–3 year periods of above- and below-average rainfall for mesic, semiarid cool, and semiarid warm grassland types. Our objective was to improve understanding of ANPP dynamics associated with changing climatic conditions by contrasting PPT–ANPP relationships in above- and below-average PPT years to those that occurred during sequences of multiple above- and below-average years. We found differences in PPT–ANPP relationships in above- and below-average years compared to long-term site averages, and variation in ANPP not explained by PPT totals that likely are attributed to legacy effects. The correlation between ANPP and current- and prior-year conditions changed from year to year throughout multiyear periods, with some legacy effects declining, and new responses emerging. Thus, ANPP in a given year was influenced by sequences of conditions that varied across grassland types and climates. Most importantly, the influence of prior-year ANPP often increased with the length of multiyear periods, whereas the influence of the amount of current-year PPT declined. Although the mechanisms by which a directional change in the frequency of above- and below-average years imposes a persistent change in grassland ANPP require further investigation, our results emphasize the importance of legacy effects on productivity for sequences of above- vs. below-average years, and illustrate the utility of long-term data to examine these patterns.",
keywords = "climate change, grassland dynamics, grassland productivity, legacy effects, precipitation",
author = "Petrie, {Matthew D.} and Peters, {Debra P.C.} and Jin Yao and Blair, {John M.} and Burruss, {Nathan D.} and Collins, {Scott L.} and Derner, {Justin D.} and Gherardi, {Laureano A.} and Hendrickson, {John R.} and Osvaldo Sala and Starks, {Patrick J.} and Steiner, {Jean L.}",
year = "2018",
month = "5",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1111/gcb.14024",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "24",
pages = "1935--1951",
journal = "Global Change Biology",
issn = "1354-1013",
publisher = "Wiley-Blackwell",
number = "5",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Regional grassland productivity responses to precipitation during multiyear above- and below-average rainfall periods

AU - Petrie, Matthew D.

AU - Peters, Debra P.C.

AU - Yao, Jin

AU - Blair, John M.

AU - Burruss, Nathan D.

AU - Collins, Scott L.

AU - Derner, Justin D.

AU - Gherardi, Laureano A.

AU - Hendrickson, John R.

AU - Sala, Osvaldo

AU - Starks, Patrick J.

AU - Steiner, Jean L.

PY - 2018/5/1

Y1 - 2018/5/1

N2 - There is considerable uncertainty in the magnitude and direction of changes in precipitation associated with climate change, and ecosystem responses are also uncertain. Multiyear periods of above- and below-average rainfall may foretell consequences of changes in rainfall regime. We compiled long-term aboveground net primary productivity (ANPP) and precipitation (PPT) data for eight North American grasslands, and quantified relationships between ANPP and PPT at each site, and in 1–3 year periods of above- and below-average rainfall for mesic, semiarid cool, and semiarid warm grassland types. Our objective was to improve understanding of ANPP dynamics associated with changing climatic conditions by contrasting PPT–ANPP relationships in above- and below-average PPT years to those that occurred during sequences of multiple above- and below-average years. We found differences in PPT–ANPP relationships in above- and below-average years compared to long-term site averages, and variation in ANPP not explained by PPT totals that likely are attributed to legacy effects. The correlation between ANPP and current- and prior-year conditions changed from year to year throughout multiyear periods, with some legacy effects declining, and new responses emerging. Thus, ANPP in a given year was influenced by sequences of conditions that varied across grassland types and climates. Most importantly, the influence of prior-year ANPP often increased with the length of multiyear periods, whereas the influence of the amount of current-year PPT declined. Although the mechanisms by which a directional change in the frequency of above- and below-average years imposes a persistent change in grassland ANPP require further investigation, our results emphasize the importance of legacy effects on productivity for sequences of above- vs. below-average years, and illustrate the utility of long-term data to examine these patterns.

AB - There is considerable uncertainty in the magnitude and direction of changes in precipitation associated with climate change, and ecosystem responses are also uncertain. Multiyear periods of above- and below-average rainfall may foretell consequences of changes in rainfall regime. We compiled long-term aboveground net primary productivity (ANPP) and precipitation (PPT) data for eight North American grasslands, and quantified relationships between ANPP and PPT at each site, and in 1–3 year periods of above- and below-average rainfall for mesic, semiarid cool, and semiarid warm grassland types. Our objective was to improve understanding of ANPP dynamics associated with changing climatic conditions by contrasting PPT–ANPP relationships in above- and below-average PPT years to those that occurred during sequences of multiple above- and below-average years. We found differences in PPT–ANPP relationships in above- and below-average years compared to long-term site averages, and variation in ANPP not explained by PPT totals that likely are attributed to legacy effects. The correlation between ANPP and current- and prior-year conditions changed from year to year throughout multiyear periods, with some legacy effects declining, and new responses emerging. Thus, ANPP in a given year was influenced by sequences of conditions that varied across grassland types and climates. Most importantly, the influence of prior-year ANPP often increased with the length of multiyear periods, whereas the influence of the amount of current-year PPT declined. Although the mechanisms by which a directional change in the frequency of above- and below-average years imposes a persistent change in grassland ANPP require further investigation, our results emphasize the importance of legacy effects on productivity for sequences of above- vs. below-average years, and illustrate the utility of long-term data to examine these patterns.

KW - climate change

KW - grassland dynamics

KW - grassland productivity

KW - legacy effects

KW - precipitation

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85044753557&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=85044753557&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1111/gcb.14024

DO - 10.1111/gcb.14024

M3 - Article

C2 - 29265568

AN - SCOPUS:85044753557

VL - 24

SP - 1935

EP - 1951

JO - Global Change Biology

JF - Global Change Biology

SN - 1354-1013

IS - 5

ER -