Modeling water availability for trees in tropical forests

Wagner Fabien, Hérault Bruno, Stahl Clément, Bonal Damien, Rossi Vivien. 2011. Modeling water availability for trees in tropical forests. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, 151 (9) : pp. 1202-1213.

Journal article ; Article de revue à facteur d'impact
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Quartile : Q1, Sujet : FORESTRY / Quartile : Q1, Sujet : AGRONOMY / Quartile : Q1, Sujet : METEOROLOGY & ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES

Abstract : Modeling soil water availability for tropical trees is a prerequisite to predicting the future impact of climate change on tropical forests. In this paper we develop a discrete-time deterministic water balance model adapted to tropical rainforest climates, and we validate it on a large dataset that includes micrometeorological and soil parameters along a topographic gradient in a lowland forest of French Guiana. The model computes daily water fluxes (rainfall interception, drainage, tree transpiration and soil plus understorey evapotranspiration) and soil water content using three input variables: daily precipitation, potential evapotranspiration and solar radiation. A novel statistical approach is employed that uses Time Domain Reflectometer (TDR) soil moisture data to estimate water content at permanent wilting point and at field capacity, and root distribution. Inaccuracy of the TDR probes and other sources of uncertainty are taken into account by model calibration through a Bayesian framework. Model daily output includes relative extractable water, REW, i.e. the daily available water standardized by potential available water. The model succeeds in capturing temporal variations in REW regardless of topographic context. The low Root Mean Square Error of Predictions suggests that the model captures the most important drivers of soil water dynamics, i.e. water refilling and root water extraction. Our model thus provides a useful tool to explore the response of tropical forests to climate scenarios of changing rainfall regime and intensity. (Résumé d'auteur)

Mots-clés Agrovoc : Changement climatique, Eau du sol, forêt tropicale

Mots-clés géographiques Agrovoc : Guyane française

Classification Agris : P40 - Meteorology and climatology
U10 - Mathematical and statistical methods
P33 - Soil chemistry and physics
K01 - Forestry - General aspects

Champ stratégique Cirad : Axe 6 (2005-2013) - Agriculture, environnement, nature et sociétés

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