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Cite this article
Chai Z, Wang D. (2016) A comparison of tree community assemblage and diversity of secondary forests between the birch and pine-oak belts in the mid-altitude zone of the Qinling Mountains, China. PeerJ PrePrints4:e1639v1https://doi.org/10.7287/peerj.preprints.1639v1
Deforestation is a major driver of forest loss and fragmentation, threatening forest biodiversity worldwide. The conservation and restoration of secondary vegetation is thus an important developmental goal. Birch and pine-oak belts have been the two main types of vegetation in the mid-altitude zone of the Qinling Mountains in China but are now mainly covered by secondary growth following large-scale deforestation. Assessing the recovery and sustainability of these forests is essential for their management and restoration. We investigated and compared the tree community assemblages and diversity patterns of secondary forests between birch and pine-oak belts in the Huoditang forest region of the Qinling Mountains after identical natural recoveries. Both the birch and pine-oak belts had richspeciescompositions and similar floristiccomponents but clearly different tree community structures. Niche and neutral processes simultaneously influenced the distribution of species and the community dynamics of the belts. Tree diversity was significantly higher for the birch than the pine-oak belt. Monitoring biodiversity is essential for the recovery and development of forest resources in the Qinling Mountains to safeguard biodiversity, especially tree diversity.
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Raw data of the typical secondary forests for the birch and pine-oak belts in the mid-altitude zoneof theQinling Mountains, China
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