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Title Spatial heterogeneity of abiotic factors - affecting species diversity in Kakamega Forest

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Author(s) Todt, H.(1); Gliniars, R.(1); Musila, W.(1,2); Oesker, M.(1); Dalitz, H.(1)

Presenting author Musila, W.

Institution(s) (1) Institute of Botany, University of Hohenheim, Stuttgart; (2) National Museum of Kenya, Nairobi

Keywords Abiotic factors; heterogeneity; species diversity; Kakamega Forest

Abstract Distribution of trees and diversity of trees species define the canopy structure of a forest and thus alter spatial heterogeneity of abiotic factors, such as canopy throughfall, distribution of nutrients, soil conditions and light availability.
To address the topic of small-scale heterogeneity, the data were collected within different forest types in small 400 m2 plots in a 5m-grid system. To investigate the temporal variability of stand structure parameter and throughfall pattern, the measurements were running for a 5 year campaign or repeated in regular intervals during that time period.
The results of analysis that include stand structure parameters, some derived from hemispherical photography, measurements of distribution and chemical properties of throughfall, physical and chemical soil characteristics, and seedling establishment and mortality, and their growth rate will be presented. The relation between small-scale distribution of abiotic factors on tree species diversity will be discussed.

Congress Topic Process Analysis

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