Biodiversity of terrestrial ecosystems in tropical to temperate Australia

Specht, Raymond L. (2012) Biodiversity of terrestrial ecosystems in tropical to temperate Australia. International Journal of Ecology, 2012 . doi:10.1155/2012/359892


Author Specht, Raymond L.
Title Biodiversity of terrestrial ecosystems in tropical to temperate Australia
Journal name International Journal of Ecology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1687-9708
1687-9716
Publication date 2012
Sub-type Critical review of research, literature review, critical commentary
DOI 10.1155/2012/359892
Open Access Status DOI
Volume 2012
Total pages 15
Place of publication New York, United States
Publisher Hindawi Publishing Corporation
Subject 1105 Dentistry
2303 Ecology
Abstract During the short period of annual foliage growth in evergreen plant communities, aerodynamic fluxes (frictional, thermal, evaporative) in the atmosphere as it flows over and through a plant community determine the Foliage Projective Covers and leaf attributes in overstorey and understorey strata. The number of leaves produced on each vertical foliage shoot depends on available soil water and nutrients during this growth period. The area of all leaves exposed to solar radiation determines net photosynthetic fixation of the plant community throughout the year. In turn, the species richness (number of species per hectare) of both plants and resident vertebrates is determined. The species richness of unicellular algae and small multicellular isopods in permanent freshwater lagoons in Northern Australia may possibly have been increased by radiation released from nearby uranium deposits. Evolution of new angiosperms probably occurred in refugia during periods of extreme drought. When favourable climates were restored, the vegetation expanded to result in high Gamma Biodiversity (number of plant species per region) but with each major plant community having essentially the same species richness (number of plant species per hectare). The probable effects of pollution and Global Warming on biodiversity in Australian ecosystems, that experience seasonal drought, are discussed.
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Critical review of research, literature review, critical commentary
Collection: School of Geography, Planning and Environmental Management Publications
 
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