Journal article

Resource availability and the abundance of an N-based defense in Australian tropical rain forests

Rebecca E Miller, Ian E Woodrow

ECOLOGY | ECOLOGICAL SOC AMER | Published : 2008

Abstract

Plant defense theories predict that relatively resource-rich environments (those with more fertile soil) will support a greater abundance of plants with nitrogen-based chemical defense, but this has yet to be adequately tested. We tested this prediction by measuring the diversity and contribution to total biomass of cyanogenic plants (those that release hydrogen cyanide from endogenous cyanide-containing compounds) in the Australian tropical rain forest. We examined 401 species in thirty 200-m2 plots, six at each of five sites, for cyanogenesis. In upland/highland rain forest, two pairs of sites similar in rainfall and altitude, but differing in soil nutrients, were selected, as well as one ..

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