Canadian Forest Service Publications

Influence of microhabitat on bryophyte diversity in Ontario mixedwood boreal forest. 2008. Cole, H.A.; Newmaster, S.G.; Bell, F.W.; Pitt, D.G.; Stinson, A. Canadian Journal of Forest Research 38: 1867 - 1876.

Year: 2008

Issued by: Great Lakes Forestry Centre

Catalog ID: 29176

Language: English

Availability: PDF (request by e-mail)

Available from the Journal's Web site.
DOI: 10.1139/X08-036

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As forest management intensifies, the conservation of forest biodiversity is a growing concern. Bryophytes are known to represent a considerable portion of plant diversity within northern forests. This is because bryophyte diversity is closely associated with microhabitat diversity. In this study, the influence of microhabitats on bryophyte diversity was investigated by comparing eight different boreal mixedwood microhabitats. The results indicate that bryophyte diversity (species richness, abundance, and evenness) is quite variable among microhabitats. The accumulation of species richness with microhabitat quantity within a forest stand also varies among microhabitats. ß-diversity analyses indicate that the variety of microhabitats has considerable influence on community structure. Frequency analysis identified bryophytes that are restricted to or prefer particular microhabitats. Although all microhabitats are important to bryophyte diversity, decayed logs and rocks supported the greatest number of microhabitat-specific species, and rock microhabitats supported the largest total number of species. Recommendations for forest management, one of which emphasizes the need to recognize and manage the natural variety of microhabitats, such as downed woody material, found within the forests to conserve or restore bryophyte diversity are provided.