Journal of Geography  & Natural Disasters

Journal of Geography  & Natural Disasters
Open Access

ISSN: 2167-0587


Disruption of Leaf Nutrient Remobilization in Coastal Cycas Trees by Tropical Cyclone Damage

Marler TE and Ferreras UF

We studied leaf nutrient status of Cycas nitida leaves that were damaged by Typhoon Haiyan in four contrasting locations in eastern Philippines to determine the influence of tropical cyclone (TC) damage on habitat biogeochemistry. Nitrogen resorption efficiency was below global values, but phosphorus and potassium resorption efficiencies were above global values. Stoichiometric relationships indicated P limitations, and leaf P traits tracked soil P availability. Typhoon Haiyan damage resulted in severe changes in P and K nutrient budgets for the plants, and the resulting litter was of high quality with traits that predicted rapid decomposition of the TC-generated litter. Partially desiccated leaves retained dead leaflet tissue exhibiting nutrient relations that did not differ from those of healthy green leaves, representing another means by which the TC disrupted nutrient cycling that added to the nutrients lost due to leaf abscission. Our results build on the need for a greater understanding of how TCs influence plant and community biogeochemistry and establish some background information for understanding ongoing climate change research.

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