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Linking tree and belowground biodiversity to forest Ecosystem function

Project Leader
Godbold Douglas L., BOKU Project Leader
FP7 - People - Marie Curie: European Reintegration Grants (ERG)
EU-Project Instruments
Marie Curie
Type of Research
Basic Research
Rewald Boris, Project Staff
Sanden Hans, Project Staff
BOKU Research Units
Institute of Forest Ecology
Funded by
Commission of the European Communities, Rue de la Loi, Brussels, European Union
It has been estimated that over two thirds of terrestrial biodiversity occurs in forests emphasizing the importance of understanding the main drivers of diversity and of sustaining these ecosystems in the face of rapid climate change. One of the important ecosystem services provide by forests is carbon sequestration: soil contains twice as much C compared to the atmosphere and two-three times more than the amount stored in the vegetation biomass. There is a growing recognition that biodiversity and the underlying complexity of ecological processes in forest ecosystems are of central importance to each of the functions attributed to forests; it is also understood that forest ecosystem resilience and adaptive capacity in the face of climate change is strongly linked to biodiversity. The LINKTOFUN project will focus on comparisons between natural forest ecosystems, nearby managed forests, and a plantation mixture, and will link forest biodiversity to ecosystem function in a
number of forest types in Austria. The work will focus on several natural wilderness sites, a highly instumented semi natural site , an instrumented site in a managed forest , and a newly established tree biodiversity manipulation site . The major objectives of LINKTOFUN are to obtain: 1. An understanding of tree-biodiversity-ecosystem function relationships based on state-of-the-art molecular and biogeochemical data from mature stands with naturally high biodiversity, compared with managed stands with (assumed) low biodiversity. 2. An understanding of the role of biodiversity in regulating and maintaining forest ecosystem function. 3. Detailed data on relationships between forest biodiversity and carbon dynamics. To estimate biodiversity and the functional group diversity in soil we will use morphotyping and molecular approaches, and intergrate high throught-put systems.
forest ecology;
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