Seasonal patterns in soil moisture, vapour pressure deficit, tree canopy cover and pre-dawn water potential in a Northern Australian savanna

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dc.contributor.author Duff, GA
dc.contributor.author Myers, BA
dc.contributor.author Williams, RJ
dc.contributor.author Eamus, D
dc.contributor.author O'Grady, A
dc.contributor.author Fordyce, IR
dc.date.accessioned 2011-02-07T06:20:45Z
dc.date.issued 1997
dc.identifier.citation Australian Journal of Botany, 1997, 45 (2), pp. 211 - 224
dc.identifier.issn 0067-1924
dc.identifier.other C1UNSUBMIT en_US
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10453/13327
dc.description.abstract The wet-dry tropics of northern Australia are characterised by extreme seasonal variation in rainfall and atmospheric vapour pressure deficit, although temperatures are relatively constant throughout the year. This seasonal variation is associated with marked changes in tree canopy cover, although the exact determinants of these changes are complex. This paper reports variation in microclimate (temperature, vapour pressure deficit (VPD)), rainfall, soil moisture, understorey light environment (total daily irradiance), and pre-dawn leaf water potential of eight dominant tree species in an area of savanna near Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia. Patterns of canopy cover are strongly influenced by both soil moisture and VPD. Increases in canopy cover coincide with decreases in VPD, and occur prior to increases in soil moisture that occur with the onset of wet season rains. Decreases in canopy cover coincide with decreases in soil moisture following the cessation of wet season rains and associated increases in VPD. Patterns of pre-dawn water potential vary significantly between species and between leaf phenological guilds. Pre-dawn water potential increases with decreasing VPD towards the end of the dry season prior to any increases in soil moisture. Decline in pre-dawn water potential coincides with both decreasing soil moisture and increasing VPD at the end of the dry season. This study emphasises the importance of the annual transition between the dry season and the wet season, a period of 1-2 months of relatively low VPD but little or no effective rainfall, preceded by a 4-6 month dry season of no rainfall and high VPD. This period is accompanied by markedly increased canopy cover, and significant increases in pre-dawn water potential, which are demonstrably independent of rainfall. This finding emphasises the importance of VPD as a determinant of physiological and phenological processes in Australian savannas.
dc.language eng
dc.title Seasonal patterns in soil moisture, vapour pressure deficit, tree canopy cover and pre-dawn water potential in a Northern Australian savanna
dc.type Journal Article
dc.parent Australian Journal of Botany
dc.journal.volume 2
dc.journal.volume 45
dc.journal.number 2 en_US
dc.publocation Collingwood en_US
dc.identifier.startpage 211 en_US
dc.identifier.endpage 224 en_US
dc.cauo.name SCI.Environmental Sciences en_US
dc.conference Verified OK en_US
dc.for 0607 Plant Biology
dc.personcode 000006
dc.percentage 100 en_US
dc.classification.name Plant Biology en_US
dc.classification.type FOR-08 en_US
dc.edition en_US
dc.custom en_US
dc.date.activity en_US
dc.location.activity en_US
pubs.embargo.period Not known
pubs.organisational-group /University of Technology Sydney
pubs.organisational-group /University of Technology Sydney/Faculty of Science
utslib.copyright.status Closed Access
utslib.copyright.date 2015-04-15 12:17:09.805752+10
pubs.consider-herdc false
utslib.collection.history School of the Environment (ID: 344)
utslib.collection.history Closed (ID: 3)
utslib.collection.history School of the Environment (ID: 344)


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