ISSN 10674136, Russian Journal of Ecology, 2014, Vol. 45, No. 3, pp. 209–214. © Pleiades Publishing, Ltd., 2014.
When forest dynamic relies on some smallscale
disturbances, a contiguous forest includes many
patches with various size structures and species com
positions, which may form mosaic patches (Watt,
1947; Whitmore, 1989a; Lertzman et al., 1996;
Manabe et al., 2009). On basis of analyzing the natural
disturbance dynamics, scientists propose a theory of
forest cycle which points out that in oldgrowth forests
there is a growth cycle initiated by nature disturbance
(Sirén, 1955; Kolesnikov, 1956; Korpel, 1982; Mar
tínezRamos et al., 1988; Whitmore 1989a, 1989b;
Parpan et al., 2009; Shorohova et al., 2009).
At present, the research on forest cycle at home and
abroad is not abundant. For example, Korpel (1982)
subdivides three patch development phases, such as
growingup patch, optimal patch, and breakup patch.
MartínezRamos et al. (1988) divide the tropical rain
forests in Mexico to different patch phases according
to forest cycles dynamics. Parpan et al. (2009) identify
four stages (the senilejuvenile stage, virgin vegetative
stage, vegetativereproductive stage, and reproductive
stage) in the cycle of regeneration dynamics of beech
generations within a relatively evenaged locus. Some
scientists divide Eurasian boreal forests to different
stand dynamic types according to disturbance time,
disturbance frequency, site type and characteristic
(Sirén, 1955; Kolesnikov, 1956; Korpel, 1982).
The article is published in the original.
In order to understand the dynamic of an old
growth forest, we need to identify the mosaics patch
characteristics, characterize their current structure
and divide the mosaics patch to different types accord
ing to gap dynamics viewpoint. Some previous studies
have classified patches to different categories, such as
nongap patch and gap patch (Brokaw, 1982); non
gap patch, gap patch, and expanding gap patch
(Runkle et al., 1995); large gap, small gap, building
patch and mature patch (AlvarezBuylla and García
Barrios, 1991); and gap patch, closed canopy patch
and adjacent gap patch (Manabe and Yamamoto,
1997). Such various patch types have been widely used
to study patch dynamics (Dubé et al., 2001).
Gaps, a opening space in forest canopy, can drive
forest growth cycle (Whitmore, 1989a, 1989b).Whit
more (1989a, 1989b) believes that a nature cycle in all
forests initiated by gap disturbances can be classified
four different phase, such as gap (G), building (B),
mature (M), and degenerate phase (D). With the
sequential change of four different patch types, abiotic
factors and their various combinations can change
correspondingly (Zang et al., 2005; Duan et al., 2009).
Microclimate in different patches can influence
plant germination, growth and reproduction, and even
control plant photosynthesis and nutrient cycling
progress (Gray et al., 2002; Ritter and Einhorn, 2005).
At present, more studies on environmental factors
focus on gap phases (Zhang et al., 2003; Ritter and
The Distribution Pattern of Different Patch Types and Heterogeneity
of the Light and Temperature:
in Qinling Mountains (China)
*, Huang MinYi
, and Wang XiaoAn
School of Life Science, Anqing Normal College, Anqing, Anhui 246011, PR China
College of Life Science, Shaanxi Normal University, Xi’an 710062, PR China
Received September 13, 2012
—Based on a field investigation in the sample of an old growth subalpine coniferous forests in
Qinling Mountains (China), we recognized the gapforming processes in
forest for four rep
resentative patches (gap phases (G), building phases (B), mature phases (M) and degenerate phases (D)). The
distribution pattern of four different patches and heterogeneity of the light and temperature were analyzed.
The percentages of four different patch types (G, B, M and D) were 32.3%, 24.5%, 23.5% and 19.7%, respec
tively. The light and temperature had significant change among four patch types. From 6 to 20 o’clock, gap
patch types changed more significantly than other three phases. The light and temperature regimes in mature
patch type had a relatively mild change. Such microenvironmental heterogeneity among four different
patches can lead to species niche partitioning, and some deterministic factors are benefit to the coexistence
of various species with different characteristics within forest community.
: Light and temperature, Heterogeneity, Patch type,