Pieter A Zuidema

Pieter A Zuidema
Wageningen University & Research | WUR · Department of Forest Ecology and Forest Management Group

PhD Utrecht University

About

216
Publications
122,510
Reads
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8,385
Citations
Introduction
I study ecology, dynamics and management of tropical forests. Special interests: tropical forests responses to climatic changes and population dynamics of tropical forest trees.
Additional affiliations
June 2014 - present
Wageningen University & Research
Position
  • Professor (Full)
Description
  • Research and teaching on tropical forest ecology. In particular, I study effects of global change on tropical forests: climate change, exploitation and fragmentation.
January 2013 - April 2013
University of Melbourne
Position
  • Visiting academic
Description
  • Visiting and collaborating with Patrick Baker and others
January 2011 - May 2014
Wageningen University & Research
Position
  • Professor (Associate)
Description
  • Research and teaching on tropical forest ecology and management, on effects of climate change on theses forests and natural resource management.
Education
January 1996 - November 2000
Utrecht University
Field of study
  • Tropical forest ecology
September 1988 - September 1994
Utrecht University
Field of study
  • Biology

Publications

Publications (216)
Article
Full-text available
The identification of patterns in life-history strategies across the tree of life is essential to our prediction of population persistence, extinction, and diversification. Plants exhibit a wide range of patterns of longevity, growth, and reproduction, but the general determinants of this enormous variation in life history are poorly understood. We...
Article
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The biomass of undisturbed tropical forests has likely increased in the past few decades, probably as a result of accelerated tree growth. Higher CO2 levels are expected to raise plant photosynthetic rates and enhance water-use efficiency, that is, the ratio of carbon assimilation through photosynthesis to water loss through transpiration. However,...
Article
Full-text available
Overhunting in tropical forests reduces populations of vertebrate seed dispersers.If reduced seed dispersal has a negative impact on tree population viability, overhunting could lead to altered forest structure and dynamics, including decreased biodiversity. However, empirical data showing decreased animal-dispersed tree abundance in overhunted for...
Article
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Most tropical forests outside protected areas have been or will be selectively logged so it is essential to maximize the conservation values of partially harvested areas. Here we examine the extent to which these forests sustain timber production, retain species, and conserve carbon stocks. We then describe some improvements in tropical forestry an...
Article
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Over the last decade the field of tropical dendroecology has developed rapidly and major achievements have been made. We reviewed the advances in three main themes within the field. First, long chronologies for tropical tree species were constructed which allowed climate reconstructions, revealed sources of climatic variation and clarified climate–...
Article
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CONTEXT Global cocoa production is largely concentrated in West Africa where over 70% of cocoa is produced. Here, cocoa farming is largely a rain-fed, low-input system with low average yields, which are expected to decline with climate change. With increasing demand, there is a need to evaluate opportunities to increase production whilst avoiding d...
Article
Forensic methods to independently trace timber origin are essential to combat illegal timber trade. Tracing product origin by analysing their multi-element composition has been successfully applied in several commodities, but its potential for timber is not yet known. To evaluate this potential the drivers of wood multi-elemental composition need t...
Article
Illegal logging and illegal timber trade is a global problem. Anatomical, genetic, and chemical techniques support illegal logging legislation by verifying the species and geographic origin of timber. In principle, these methods can be used to identify timber species and the origin of harvest, however, the availability of specific tests for importa...
Article
With increasing concerns about sustainable exploitation of tropical timber, there is a need for developing independent tools to check their origin. We evaluated the potential of tree-ring stable isotopes for identifying four Cedrela species (C. balansae, C. fissilis, C. odorata, and C. saltensis) and for identifying geographic origin of C. fissilis...
Article
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Climate extremes will increasingly influence ecosystem productivity of tropical forests, but little is known about their effects on tree stem radial growth, a major component of forest productivity. To analyze the role of climatic drivers and local site differences on tree growth at sub-annual timescales, we studied the timing, magnitude and climat...
Article
Full-text available
Interannual variability in the global land carbon sink is strongly related to variations in tropical temperature and rainfall. This association suggests an important role for moisture-driven fluctuations in tropical vegetation productivity, but empirical evidence to quantify the responsible ecological processes is missing. Such evidence can be obta...
Preprint
Ecologists have long sought to understand the controls of species’ geographic distributions. Two important hypotheses have been that range limits are determined 1) predominantly by climate or 2) by competition in addition to climate, with competitive interactions dominating where climate is benign. If the first hypothesis is correct, the effect of...
Article
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Marine fish populations commonly exhibit low-frequency fluctuations in biomass that can cause catch volatility and thus endanger the food and economic security of dependent coastal societies. Such variability has been linked to fishing intensity, demographic processes and environmental variability, but our understanding of the underlying drivers re...
Article
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Estimates of the percentage of species “committed to extinction” by climate change range from 15% to 37%. The question is whether factors other than climate need to be included in models predicting species’ range change. We created demographic range models that include climate vs. climate‐plus‐competition, evaluating their influence on the geograph...
Chapter
The study of stable isotopes in tree rings is relatively new, but growing research field in tropical forests. In this chapter, we review 53 studies that measured stable isotopes of C, O and/or N in tree rings of a total of 83 tropical tree species. Tree growth in tropical forests is generally determined by seasonality of precipitation, and not temp...
Article
Full-text available
Seasonally dry tropical forests are an important global climatic regulator, a main driver of the global carbon sink dynamics and are predicted to suffer future reductions in their productivity due to climate change. Yet, little is known about how interannual climate variability affects tree growth and how climate-growth responses vary across rainfa...
Article
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Tree rings provide an invaluable long‐term record for understanding how climate and other drivers shape tree growth and forest productivity. However, conventional tree‐ring analysis methods were not designed to simultaneously test effects of climate, tree size, and other drivers on individual growth. This has limited the potential to test ecologica...
Article
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Droughts in a warming climate have become more common and more extreme, making understanding forest responses to water stress increasingly pressing. Analysis of water stress in trees has long focused on water potential in xylem and leaves, which influences stomatal closure and water flow through the soil-plant-atmosphere continuum. At the same time...
Article
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A typical case of multiple-use forest management (MFM) in Southwestern Amazon is the commercial harvesting of Amazon or Brazil nut (Bertholletia excelsa) seeds and of timber of other tree species. Although the Amazon nut is the most important non-timber forest product (NTFP) in the Amazon basin, the species is under serious threat due to deforestat...
Article
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To maximize trees restoration potential, it is crucial to know where and how. In this study led by Rens Brouwer, we explored the planting performance and productivity of a socio-environmentally highly valuable species from the Amazon, the Brazil nut tree, and compared its planting success across management practices, degraded areas, agroforestry sy...
Article
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1. Forest landscape restoration (FLR) has gained momentum globally and guidance is needed to identify those species, sites and planting methods that increase restoration success. Incorporating native Non-Timber Forest Product (NTFP) species in FLR approaches provides an opportunity to simultaneously deliver ecological and economic benefits. The Bra...
Article
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ABSTRACT CONTEXT: Cocoa (Theobroma cacao L.) is one of the world’s most important agricultural commodity crops with the largest share of global production concentrated in West Africa. Current on-farm yields in this region are low and are expected to decrease in response to climate change, through warming and shifts in rainfall. Interventions intend...
Article
The Bangladesh Sundarbans is the largest continuous mangrove in the world that providing crucial environmental services, particularly related to coastal protection and livelihoods of millions of people. However, anthropogenic disturbances, diseases infestation and environmental changes including sea level rise (SLR) and fresh-water flux into the de...
Article
Tropical forests are the most diverse and productive ecosystems on Earth. While better understanding of these forests is critical for our collective future, until quite recently efforts to measure and monitor them have been largely disconnected. Networking is essential to discover the answers to questions that transcend borders and the horizons of...
Article
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Agroforestry systems with a range of native and often neglected and underutilized tree species (NUS) are increasingly recognized for their potential role in restoration, simultaneously providing ecological and livelihood benefits. Successful adoption of these systems requires knowledge about beneficial species, system-level potential profitability,...
Article
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A Correction to this paper has been published: https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-020-20537-x
Article
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The carbon sink capacity of tropical forests is substantially affected by tree mortality. However, the main drivers of tropical tree death remain largely unknown. Here we present a pan-Amazonian assessment of how and why trees die, analysing over 120,000 trees representing > 3800 species from 189 long-term RAINFOR forest plots. While tree mortality...
Article
Full-text available
The carbon sink capacity of tropical forests is substantially affected by tree mortality. However, the main drivers of tropical tree death remain largely unknown. Here we present a pan-Amazonian assessment of how and why trees die, analysing over 120,000 trees representing > 3800 species from 189 long-term RAINFOR forest plots. While tree mortality...
Article
Atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration ([CO2]) is increasing, which increases leaf‐scale photosynthesis and intrinsic water‐use efficiency. These direct responses have the potential to increase plant growth, vegetation biomass, and soil organic matter; transferring carbon from the atmosphere into terrestrial ecosystems (a carbon sink). A substant...
Method
Full-text available
Today we have five types of timber tracking tools available. Each has its own strengths and limitations (see the Timber Tracking Tool Infogram), but together they offer a broad range of methods that can assist us in identifying the botanical as well as the geographic origin (provenance) of most kinds of timber samples, even those smaller than 1 cm³...
Article
Full-text available
The sensitivity of tropical forest carbon to climate is a key uncertainty in predicting global climate change. Although short-term drying and warming are known to affect forests, it is unknown if such effects translate into long-term responses. Here, we analyze 590 permanent plots measured across the tropics to derive the equilibrium climate contro...
Article
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Atmospheric CO2 (c a) rise changes the physiology and possibly growth of tropical trees, but these effects are likely modified by climate. Such c a × climate interactions importantly drive CO2 fertilization effects of tropical forests predicted by global vegetation models, but have not been tested empirically. Here we use tree‐ring analyses to quan...
Article
The sensitivity of tropical forest carbon to climate is a key uncertainty in predicting global climate change. Although short-term drying and warming are known to affect forests, it is unknown if such effects translate into long-term responses. Here, we analyze 590 permanent plots measured across the tropics to derive the equilibrium climate contro...
Article
Full-text available
High-elevation forests are experiencing high rates of warming, in combination with CO2 rise and (sometimes) drying trends. In these montane systems, the effects of environmental changes on tree growth are also modified by elevation itself, thus complicating our ability to predict effects of future climate change. Tree-ring analysis along an elevati...
Article
Full-text available
The effect of logging on atmospheric carbon concentrations remains highly contested, especially in the tropics where it is associated to forest degradation. To contribute to this discussion, we estimated the carbon balance from logging natural tropical forests in Costa Rica through a life cycle accounting approach. Our system included all major lif...
Article
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The harvest of plant parts and exudates from wild populations contributes to the income, food security and livelihoods of many millions of people worldwide. Frankincense, an aromatic resin sourced from natural populations of Boswellia trees and shrubs, has been cherished by world societies for centuries. Boswellia populations are threatened by over...
Article
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Introduction Defoliation and light competition are ubiquitous stressors that can strongly limit plant performance. Tolerance to defoliation is often associated with compensatory growth, which could be positively or negatively related to plant growth. Genetic variation in growth, tolerance and compensation, in turn, plays an important role in the ev...
Data
Allometric model. Details on methods of the construction of an allometric model for estimation of biomass per plant part of seedlings of 6 months of age. (DOCX)
Data
Iterative growth model. Details on methods of the construction and adaptation of an iterative growth model for estimation of daily individual seedling NAR, flam and γ. (DOCX)
Article
Full-text available
Illegal trade of tropical timber leads to biodiversity and economic losses worldwide. There is a need for forensic tools that allow tracing the origin of timber and verifying compliance with international and national regulations. We evaluated the potential for genetic tracing of Cedrela odorata, one of the most traded neotropical timbers, within B...
Article
Full-text available
Most of the planet's diversity is concentrated in the tropics, which includes many regions undergoing rapid climate change. Yet, while climate-induced biodiversity changes are widely documented elsewhere, few studies have addressed this issue for lowland tropical ecosystems. Here we investigate whether the floristic and functional composition of in...
Preprint
Full-text available
Defoliation is a ubiquitous stressor that can strongly limit plant performance. Tolerance to defoliation is often associated with compensatory growth. Genetic variation in tolerance and compensatory growth responses, in turn, play an important role in the evolutionary adaptation of plants to changing disturbance regimes but this issue has been poor...
Article
Full-text available
Most of the planet's diversity is concentrated in the tropics, which includes many regions undergoing rapid climate change. Yet, while climate‐induced biodiversity changes are widely documented elsewhere, few studies have addressed this issue for lowland tropical ecosystems. Here we investigate whether the floristic and functional composition of in...
Article
Realistic forecasting of forest responses to climate change critically depends on key advancements in global vegetation modelling. Compared with traditional 'big-leaf' models that simulate forest stands, 'next-generation' vegetation models aim to track carbon-, light-, water-, and nutrient-limited growth of individual trees. Wood biology can play a...
Article
We appreciate the comments of Horacek et al. on our publication about African timber tracing (Vlam et al., 2018). In short, our results showed that the geographic origin of Tali timber could be inferred from genetic characteristics (DNA), but not from chemical characteristics obtained from measurements of 3 stable isotopes. Horacek et al. claim tha...
Article
Combating illegal timber trade requires the ability to identify species and verify geographic origin of timber. Forensic techniques that independently verify the declared species and geographic origin are needed, as current legality procedures are based on certificates and documents that can be falsified. Timber from the genus Cedrela is among the...
Article
Combatting illegal timber trade requires forensic tools that independently verify claimed geographic origin of timber. Chemical and genetic wood characteristics are potentially suitable tools, but their performance at small spatial scales is unknown. Here we test whether stable isotopes and microsatellites can differentiate Tali timber (Erythrophle...
Article
Full-text available
Natural populations deliver a wide range of products that provide income for millions of people and need to be exploited sustainably. Large heterogeneity in individual performance within these exploited populations has the potential to improve population recovery after exploitation and thus help sustain yields over time. 2.We explored the potential...
Article
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There is a growing disconnect between the international conferences where grand solutions for tropical conservation are designed and the complex local realities in tropical landscapes where plans need to be implemented. Every tropical landscape is different and no “one size will fit all.” There is a tendency for global processes to prescribe simple...
Article
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An unanswered question in ecology is whether the environmental factors driving short-term performance also determine the often observed long-term performance differences among individuals. Here, we analyze the extent to which temporal persistence of spatial heterogeneity in environmental factors can contribute to long-term inter-individual variatio...
Article
Full-text available
The Brazil nut (the seeds of the rainforest tree Bertholletia excelsa) is the only globally traded seed collected from the wild by forest-based harvesters across the Amazon basin. The large geographic scale of Brazil nut exploitation and the significant contributions to local livelihoods, national economies, and forest-based development over the la...
Article
1. The notion that many tropical tree species form annual growth rings has triggered research on their growth and its environmental drivers over long periods of time. Even more recently, a large number of studies have also analysed the natural abundance of stable isotopes in tropical tree rings. The rapid developments in this young field call for a...
Article
Full-text available
Tree species in tropical forests provide economically important goods and ecosystem services. In submontane forests of southwestern Amazonia, we investigated the degree to which tree species important for subsistence and trade contribute to aboveground carbon storage (AGC). We used 41 1-hectare plots to determine the species abundance, basal area,...
Article
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Over the past few decades there has been a growing realization that a large share of apparently ‘virgin’ or ‘old-growth’ tropical forests carries a legacy of past natural or anthropogenic disturbances that have a substantial effect on present-day forest composition, structure and dynamics. Yet, direct evidence of such disturbances is scarce and com...