NCEAS Project 9762

Geographic distribution of neotropical tree species: Pattern and process

  • Richard Condit

ActivityDatesFurther Information
Sabbatical Fellow9th December 2005—14th March 2008Participant List  
Center Associate13th January 2006—12th January 2007Participant List  

I propose a sabbatical at NCEAS to study geographic distributions of tree species in Central and South America. My goal is to gain understanding of the factors that limit tree ranges in neotropical forests, both at local scales (hundreds of meters across topographic or moisture gradients) and regional scales (hundreds of kilometers across climatic gradients). I have assembled extensive and precise datasets from tree plots at both scales in Panama and Ecuador, and I will develop novel population models that describe key biological processes: dispersal, reproduction, and survival of individual trees across habitats. The simulations offer predictions on spatial patterns of individuals relative to topography and habitat, and these will be compared with observed spatial patterns to determine which population processes best account for the data. Neotropical forests hold a substantial share of the world¿s plant diversity, but our knowledge about species¿ ranges there is crude. Understanding the processes limiting ranges at local and regional scales is necessary to accurately predict future impact of deforestation and climate change.

TypeProducts of NCEAS Research
Journal Article Comita, Liza S.; Condit, Richard; Hubbell, Stephen P. 2007. Developmental changes in habitat associations of tropical trees. Journal of Ecology. Vol: 95. Pages 482-492. (Online version)
Journal Article Condit, Richard; Ashton, Peter; Bunyavejchewin, Sarayudh; Dattaraja, Handanakere S.; Davies, Stuart; Esufali, Shameema; Ewango, Corneille E.N.; Foster, Robin; Gunatilleke, I.A.U.N.; Gunatilleke, C.V.S.; Hall, Pamela; Harms, Kyle E.; Hart, Terese; Hernandez, Consuelo; Hubbell, Stephen P.; Itoh, Akira; Kiratiprayoon, Somboon; LaFrankie, James; Loo de Lao, Suzanne; Makana, Jean-Remy; Supardi Noor, Md. Nur; Kassim, Abdul Rahman; Russo, Sabrina E.; Sukumar, Raman; Samper, Cristian; Suresh, Hebbalalu S.; Tan, Sylvester; Thomas, Sean C.; Valencia, Renato; Vallejo, Martha I.; Villa, Gorky; Zillio, Tommaso. 2006. The importance of demographic niches to tree diversity. Science. Vol: 313. Pages 98-101. (Online version)
Data Set Condit, Richard. 2008. Condit et al.: Growth and mortality of tropical tree species in La Planada, Colombia. (Online version)
Data Set Condit, Richard; Sukumar, Raman. 2008. Condit et al.: Growth and Mortality of tropical tree species in Mudumalai, India. (Online version)
Data Set Condit, Richard; Rahman, Kassim A.; Ashton, Peter; Supardi Noor, Md. Nur. 2008. Condit et al.: Growth and Mortality of tropical tree species in Pasoh, Peninsular Malaysia. (Online version)
Data Set Condit, Richard; Gunatilleke, C.V.S.; Gunatilleke, I.A.U.N. 2008. Condit et al.: Growth and Mortality of tropical tree species in Sinharaja, Sri Lanka. (Online version)
Data Set Condit, Richard; Valencia, Renato. 2008. Condit et al.: Growth and Mortality of tropical tree species in Yasuni, Ecuador. (Online version)
Journal Article Engelbrecht, Bettina M. J.; Comita, Liza S.; Condit, Richard; Kursar, Thomas A.; Tyree, Melvin T.; Turner, Benjamin L.; Hubbell, Stephen P. 2007. Drought sensitivity shapes species distribution patterns in tropical forests. Nature. Vol: 447. Pages 80-83. (Online version)
Journal Article Goldsmith, Gregory R.; Comita, Liza S.; Morefield, Leslie L.; Condit, Richard; Hubbell, Stephen P. 2006. Long-term research impacts on seedling community structure and composition in a permanent forest plot. Forest Ecology and Management. Vol: 234. Pages 34-39.
Data Set Hubbell, Stephen P.; Foster, Robin; Condit, Richard. 2006. Barro Colorado Island 50 ha forest dynamics plot, Panama. (Abstract) (Online version)
Journal Article Hubbell, Stephen P.; He, Fangliang; Condit, Richard; Borda-de-Agua, Luis; Kellner, James; ter Steege, Hans. 2008. How many tree species are there in the Amazon and how many of them will go extinct?. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Vol: 105. Pages 11498-11504.
Journal Article Kenfack, David; Thomas, Duncan; Chuyong, George; Condit, Richard. 2006. Rarity and abundance in a diverse African forest. Biodiversity and Conservation. Vol: 16. Pages 2045-2074. (Online version)
Journal Article Melian, Carlos J.; Alonso, David; Allesina, Stefano; Condit, Richard; Etienne, Rampal S. 2012. Does sex speed up evolutionary rate and increase biodiversity?. PLoS Computational Biology. Vol: 8(3). Pages e1002414-e1002414. (Online version)
Journal Article Metz, Margaret R.; Comita, Liza S.; Chen, Yu-Yun; Norden, Natalia; Condit, Richard; Hubbell, Stephen P.; Sun, I-Fang; Md. Noor, Nur Supardi; Wright, S. Joseph. 2008. Temporal and spatial variability in seedling dynamics: a cross-site comparison in four lowland tropical forests. Journal of Tropical Ecology. Vol: 24. Pages 9-18. (Online version)
Journal Article Rüger, Nadja; Huth, Andreas; Hubbell, Stephen P.; Condit, Richard. 2009. Response of recruitment to light availability across a tropical lowland rain forest community. Journal of Ecology. Vol: 97. Pages 1360-1368. (Online version)
Journal Article Rüger, Nadja; Huth, Andreas; Hubbell, Stephen P.; Condit, Richard. 2011. Determinants of mortality across a tropical lowland rainforest community. Oikos. Vol: 120(7). Pages 1047-1056. (Online version)
Journal Article Zillio, Tommaso; Condit, Richard. 2007. The impact of neutrality, niche differentiation and species input on diversity and abundance distributions . Oikos. Vol: 116. Pages 931-940. (Online version)