Project properties

Title What is the biomass of tropical rainforest trees?
Group Forest Ecology and Forest Management Group
Project type thesis
Credits 24-36
Supervisor(s) FEM group: , Lourens Poorter,
Examiner(s) Prof.Dr. F.J.J.M (Frans) Bongers
Contact info Lourens Poorter
Begin date 2018/01/04
End date
Description Tropical forests store a quarter of all terrestrial biomass and play therefore an important role in the global carbon cycle. Much of the biomass in stored in giant emergent trees. Yet, estimations of carbon storage remain highly uncertain. Classical approaches to estimate aboveground biomass are most based on allometric equations relating tree biomass to stem diameter. This does not inform us only about how much biomass is stored, but it also tells something about the ecology and biomass investment strategies of tropical plants. This thesis topic is a desk study in which you can use your data analysis skills. Here you can digitize and use a unique and exciting dataset in which all individual plants in quarter of a hectare of tropical rainforest in Surinam was completely harvested and weighed. You can use these data to 1) improve our allometric estimates for tropical trees, 2) evaluate whether different life forms (trees, lianas, shrubs, palms) differ in their biomass investment strategies, 3) how biomass allocation to leaves, stem and branches vary when plants increase in size, and why.

Climate change effects /Biodiversity and functional diversity / Ecosystem services / Ecophysiology/ The Netherlands/ America's/ Tropical zone
Used skills SPSS or other statistical packages
Requirements FEM-30306 Forest Ecology and Forest Management; REG-31806 Ecological Methods I;