Classifying plants into groups on the basis of associations of individual traits - evidence from Australian semi-arid woodlands

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Abstract

A multivariate analysis of 43 traits of 300 species from semi-arid woodlands in W New South Wales, Australia is described. The traits encompass vegetative, life-history, phenological and seed-biology characters. Five main groups of species were produced which corresponded largely to growth form: perennial forbs and C3 grasses, subshrubs of the family Chenopodiaceae: perennial C4 grasses; trees and shrubs; and annual forbs and grasses. The trait associated with these groups were vegetative, life-history and phenological. There were higher percentages of associations within and between vegetative, life-history and phenological traits, than within seed-biology traits. This has important consequences for models of vegetation dynamics in the context of species migrations under global climate change, as these models group species largely on the basis of their vegetative and life-history attributes. -from Authors

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)417-424
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Ecology
Volume80
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1992

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