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Permanent link (DOI): https://doi.org/10.7939/R30C8P

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Modelling early plant primary succession on Mount St. Helens Open Access

Descriptions

Other title
Subject/Keyword
Ecological Stoichiometry
Spatial Ecology
Community Ecology
Primary Succession
Models
Type of item
Thesis
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Marleau, Justin
Supervisor and department
Lewis, Mark (Biological Sciences; Mathematics and Statistics)
Examining committee member and department
He, Fangliang (Renewable Resources)
Cahill, James (Biological Sciences)
Department
Department of Biological Sciences
Specialization

Date accepted
2009-09-25T15:19:50Z
Graduation date
2009-11
Degree
Master of Science
Degree level
Master's
Abstract
Understanding the mechanisms that control the rate and trajectory of primary succession can lead to insights for ecosystem rehabilitation. Proposed mechanisms include life history traits and nutrient limitation. To explore how these mechanisms can drive successional dynamics, I devised a stoichiometric ecosystem-level model that considered the role of nitrogen and phosphorus limitation in plant primary succession in conjunction with life history traits. This model was applied to the plant community on Mount St. Helens to check the validity of the mechanisms. The results show the competitive hierarchy of plants at the local scale can be explained by nutrient limitation and plant stoichiometry. At regional scales, life history traits interact with local processes to shape community structure and successional dynamics. At all scales, the presence of Lupinus lepidus, a nitrogen-fixer, significantly altered community dynamics and succession. This study suggests that primary succession can be examined within the framework of ecological stoichiometry.
Language
English
DOI
doi:10.7939/R30C8P
Rights
Permission is hereby granted to the University of Alberta Libraries to reproduce single copies of this thesis and to lend or sell such copies for private, scholarly or scientific research purposes only. Where the thesis is converted to, or otherwise made available in digital form, the University of Alberta will advise potential users of the thesis of these terms. The author reserves all other publication and other rights in association with the copyright in the thesis and, except as herein before provided, neither the thesis nor any substantial portion thereof may be printed or otherwise reproduced in any material form whatsoever without the author's prior written permission.
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File author: Justin Marleau
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