Send to

Choose Destination
Theor Popul Biol. 2002 Sep;62(2):153-68.

A spatially explicit neutral model of beta-diversity in tropical forests.

Author information

Laboratoire d'Ecologie Terrestre, CNRS UMR 5552, 13, Avenue du Colonel Roche, F-31029, Toulouse, Cedex 4, France.


To represent species turnover in tropical rain forest, we use a neutral model where a tree's fate is not affected by what species it belongs to, seeds disperse a limited distance from their parents, and speciation is in equilibrium with random extinction. We calculate the similarity function, the probability F(r) that two trees separated by a distance r belong to the same species, assuming that the dispersal kernel P(r), the distribution of seeds about their parents and the prospects of mortality and reproduction, are the same for all trees regardless of their species. If P(r) is radially symmetric Gaussian with mean-square dispersal distance sigma, F(r) can be expressed in closed form. If P(r) is a radially symmetric Cauchy distribution, then, in two-dimensional space, F(r) is proportional to 1/r for large r. Analytical results are compared with individual-based simulations, and the relevance to field observations is discussed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center