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Global climatic drivers of leaf size

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Title: Global climatic drivers of leaf size
Authors: Wright, IJ
Dong, N
Maire, V
Prentice, IC
Westoby, M
Diaz, S
Gallagher, RV
Jacobs, BF
Kooyman, R
Law, EA
Leishman, MR
Niinemets, U
Reich, PB
Sack, L
Villar, R
Wang, H
Wilf, P
Item Type: Journal Article
Abstract: Leaf size varies by over a 100,000-fold among species worldwide. Although 19th-century plant geographers noted that the wet tropics harbor plants with exceptionally large leaves, the latitudinal gradient of leaf size has not been well quantified nor the key climatic drivers convincingly identified. Here, we characterize worldwide patterns in leaf size. Large-leaved species predominate in wet, hot, sunny environments; small-leaved species typify hot, sunny environments only in arid conditions; small leaves are also found in high latitudes and elevations. By modeling the balance of leaf energy inputs and outputs, we show that daytime and nighttime leaf-to-air temperature differences are key to geographic gradients in leaf size. This knowledge can enrich “next-generation” vegetation models in which leaf temperature and water use during photosynthesis play key roles.
Issue Date: 1-Sep-2017
Date of Acceptance: 2-Aug-2017
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10044/1/54224
DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1126/science.aal4760
ISSN: 0036-8075
Publisher: American Association for the Advancement of Science
Start Page: 917
End Page: 921
Journal / Book Title: SCIENCE
Volume: 357
Issue: 6354
Copyright Statement: © 2017, American Association for the Advancement of Science http://www.sciencemag.org/about/science-licenses-journal-article-reuse. This is the author’s version of the work. It is posted here by permission of the AAAS for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Science on Vol. 357, Issue 6354, pp. 917-921 DOI: 10.1126/science.aal4760. This is an article distributed under the terms of the Science Journals Default License (http://www.sciencemag.org/about/science-licenses-journal-article-reuse?_ga=2.148216823.1378504448.1511865513-886351291.1511865513).
Sponsor/Funder: AXA Research Fund
Funder's Grant Number: AXA Chair Programme in Biosphere and Climate Impacts
Keywords: Science & Technology
Multidisciplinary Sciences
Science & Technology - Other Topics
MD Multidisciplinary
General Science & Technology
Publication Status: Published
Appears in Collections:Faculty of Natural Sciences
Department of Life Sciences