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Influence of microenvironment on the spatial distribution of Himantormia lugubris (Parmeliaceae) in ASPA No. 171, maritime Antarctic

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Title
Influence of microenvironment on the spatial distribution of Himantormia lugubris (Parmeliaceae) in ASPA No. 171, maritime Antarctic
Authors
Choi, Seung Ho
Kim, Seok Cheol
Hong, Soon Gyu
Lee, Kyu Song
Subject
Life Sciences & Biomedicine - Other Topics
Keywords
Antarctic; ASPA; Himantormia lugubris; Niche; Spatial distribution; Usnea spp.
Issue Date
2015
Citation
Choi, Seung Ho., et al. 2015. Influence of microenvironment on the spatial distribution of Himantormia lugubris (Parmeliaceae) in ASPA No. 171, maritime Antarctic. J. Ecol. Environ. 38(4): 493-503.
Abstract
This study analyzed how spatial distribution of Himantormia lugubris is affected by the microenvironment in the Antarctic Specially Protected Area (ASPA) No. 171 located in the Barton Peninsula of King George Island that belongs to the maritime Antarctic. In order to determine the population structure of H. lugubris grwing in Baekje Hill within ASPA No. 171, we counted the individuals of different size groups after dividing the population into 5 growth stages according to mean diameter as follows: ≤ 1 cm, 1-3 cm, 3-5 cm, 5-10 cm, and ≥ 10 cm. The count of H. lugubris individuals in each growth stage was converted into its percentage with respect to the entire population, which yielded the finding that stages 1 through 5 accounted for 32.8%, 25.3%, 15.9%, 22.5%, and 3.5%, respectively. This suggests that the population of H.lugubris in ASPA No. 171 has a stable reverse J-shaped population structure, with the younger individuals outnumbering mature ones. The mean density of H. lugubris was 17.6/0.25 M2, mean canopy cover 13.3%, and the mean dry weight 37.8g/0.25 M2. It began to produce spore in the sizes over 3 cm, and most individuals measuring 5-10 cm were adults with sexually mature apothecia. The spatial distribution of H. lugubris was highly heterogeneous. The major factors influencing its distribution and performance were found to be the period covered by snow, wind direction, moisture, size of the substrate, and canopy cover of Usnea spp. Based on these factors, we constructed a prediction model for estimating the spatial distribution of H. lugubris. Conclusively, the major factors for the spatial distribution of H. lugubris were snow, wind, substrate and the competition with Usnea spp. These results are important for understanding of the distribution in the maritime Antarctic and evolution of H. lugubris that claims a unique life history and ecological niche.s.
DOI
10.5141/ecoenv.2015.052
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