Environmental effects on dynamic stem circumference variation in mangrove trees

TitleEnvironmental effects on dynamic stem circumference variation in mangrove trees
Collection TypeDataset
Access PrivilegesDivision of Plant Science
DOI - Digital Object Identifier10.25911/5d5f6648918ff
Metadata LanguageEnglish
Data LanguageEnglish
Significance StatementThe results showed a common pattern of daytime stem swelling across a diverse range of habitats and mangrove species that differed in salinity tolerance, wood structure and functional leaf traits. This unusual pattern of daytime stem swelling was strongly correlated with daily maximum air temperature, while unaffected by defoliation. These observations suggest that thermal expansion may have played a greater role in stem circumference variation than expected and merits further study. In addition, rainfall events were correlated with stem swelling, underscoring the importance of stem water status to variation in circumference. More research needs to be done to understand the processes that contribute to dynamic variation in stem circumference with variation in climatic factors that affect the availability of water. Understanding these processes could enable Automatic Dendrometer Bands (ADBs) to provide a useful tool for monitoring the response of mangroves to extreme climatic events as they provide high-frequency, long-term, and large-scale information on tree water status and growth.
Brief DescriptionTree stems swell and shrink daily, which is thought to reflect mainly dynamic changes in water volume. Daily patterns in stem circumference variation were measured with automatic dendrometer bands in diverse mangrove species in five mangrove forests across Australia and New Caledonia. The stems swelled during the day and shrank at night. Maximum swelling was highly correlated with daily maxima in air temperature, while the timing of stem swelling was not affected by either variation in soil salinity or levels of tidal inundation. Medium-term increases in stem circumference were highly sensitive to rainfall. Trees were defoliated to assess the role of foliar transpiration in stem swelling and shrinking. The pattern of daytime swelling was maintained in defoliated trees, indicating that processes other than canopy transpiration influence temporary stem diameter increments. These processes could include thermal expansion of stems, and more research is required to understand the processes contributing to stem shrinking and swelling.
Full DescriptionDaily variation in the stem circumference of a diverse range of mangrove species was studied in relation to the environmental conditions in which the trees grew in five forests located in Australia and New Caledonia. The species studied were Avicennia marina, Bruguiera gymnorrhiza, Rhizophora apiculata, R. stylosa and Xylocarpus granatum. Circumference variation in tree stems were monitored with automatic dendrometer bands. The magnitude and timing of maximum diel stem shrinking and swelling were determined and analysed in relation to variation in climatic factors (air temperature, humidity and rainfall) and tidal inundation, together with the salinity of soil pore water at a depth of 30 cm below the soil surface. Stems swelled during the day and shrank at night, with no discernible effects of salinity or tidal inundation. In contrast, increases in stem circumference were highly sensitive to rainfall, while daily maximum stem swelling was strongly correlated with daily maximum temperature.
Effects of defoliation on the diel patterns of variation in stem circumference were studied in two groups of mangroves: trees of Avicennia marina growing in a hypersaline mangrove system under arid climatic conditions along Giralia Bay, Western Australia, and trees of Xylocarpus granatum growing in a low salinity mangrove system along the Daintree River in the wet tropics of North Queensland. Dendrobands recorded stem circumference variation before and after defoliation. The pattern of daytime swelling was maintained in defoliated trees, indicating that processes or factors other than canopy transpiration, such as thermal expansion, influence temporary stem diameter increments. All trees fully recovered from the defoliation treatments. Please see the accompanying publication for full details (Vilas et al 2019 PLOS ONE).
Contact Emailmaria.vilas@csiro.au
Contact Address306 Carmody Road
St Lucia - 4067
Contact Phone Number0434284519
Principal InvestigatorMarilyn C Ball
SupervisorsMarilyn C Ball
CollaboratorsCatherine E Lovelock
R S Oliveira
L Sack
M Mencuccini
Fields of Research060705 - Plant Physiology
060203 - Ecological Physiology
Socio-Economic Objective970106 - Expanding Knowledge in the Biological Sciences
960802 - Coastal and Estuarine Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity
KeywordsAvicennia marina
Rhizophora spp.
Xylocarpus granatum
stem diameter variations
water deficit
Type of Research ActivityStrategic basic research
Date Coverage
Date FromDate To
Geospatial Location
Location TypeLocation Value
TextNoosa Inner: 26.31°S, 152.98°E
TextNoosa Outer: 26.36°S, 153.04°E
TextTerranora Lower: 28.24°S, 153.50°E
TextTerranora Upper: 28.22°S, 153.51°E
TextGiralia Lower: 22.46°S 114.24°E
TextGiralia Upper: 22.46°S 114.24°E
TextDaintree River: 16.32°S 145.41°E
TextDaintree River defoliation: 16.30°S 145.42°E
TextOuvéa Atoll: 20.65° S, 166.56° E
Date of data creation2017
Year of data publication2019
Creator(s) for Citation
Given NameSurname
Maria PVilas
Matthew PAdams
Marilyn C Ball
Nadia SSantini
Catherine ELovelock
Publisher for CitationThe Australian National University Data Commons

Identifier Type
International Standard Serial Number
Identifier Value

Publication Title
Night and day: shrinking and swelling of stems of diverse mangrove species growing along environmental gradients
Publication Reference

Other Related Identifiershttp://purl.org/au-research/grants/arc/DP150104437
Access RightsOpen Access allowed
Access Rights TypeOpen
Licence TypeCC-BY-NC-ND - Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDervis (Version 3.0)
Retention PeriodIndefinitely
Extent or Quantity48
Data Size10.7 MB
Data Management PlanNo
Status: Published
Published To:
- Australian National University
- Australian National Data Service
Identifier: anudc:6005
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