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      Spatial patterns in the distribution of tropical tree species.

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          Abstract

          Fully mapped tree census plots of large area, 25 to 52 hectares, have now been completed at six different sites in tropical forests, including dry deciduous to wet evergreen forest on two continents. One of the main goals of these plots has been to evaluate spatial patterns in tropical tree populations. Here the degree of aggregation in the distribution of 1768 tree species is examined based on the average density of conspecific trees in circular neighborhoods around each tree. When all individuals larger than 1 centimeter in stem diameter were included, nearly every species was more aggregated than a random distribution. Considering only larger trees (>/= 10 centimeters in diameter), the pattern persisted, with most species being more aggregated than random. Rare species were more aggregated than common species. All six forests were very similar in all the particulars of these results.

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          Science
          Science (New York, N.Y.)
          American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)
          0036-8075
          0036-8075
          May 26 2000
          : 288
          : 5470
          Affiliations
          [1 ] Center for Tropical Forest Science, Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Unit 0948, APO AA 34002-0948, USA. ctfs@tivoli.si.edu
          Article
          8524
          10.1126/science.288.5470.1414
          10827950
          4673117f-e19b-4e74-a2c6-3e3dcb008da9
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