New GEM plots in Mato Grosso
The plots are located in the transition zone between Cerrado and Amazon Forest biomes, eastern Mato Grosso, Brazil. One plot was established in a cerrado stricto sensu (savanna) and other in cerradão (savanna forest). The study is conducted at Parque Municipal do Bacaba of the Universidade do Estado de Mato Grosso (UNEMAT), located in Nova Xavantina (14°42′S, 52°21′W) in partnership with Project PELD-Transição Cerrado Floresta-Amazônica (CNPq/Long-term Ecological Projects).
Bacaba park present different vegetation types (cerrado stricto sensu, cerrado rupestre, cerradão and gallery forests) which has been monitored since 1995. The basal area (~21 m2ha-1) and the mean heights (6.4 m) of the cerradão are greater than that of the cerrado stricto sensu (~15 m2ha-1 and 3.7 m). The most important species in cerradão are Hirtella glandulosa, Tachigali vulgaris and Xylopia aromatica, and in the cerrado stricto sensu are Qualea parviflora, Davilla elliptica and Roupala montana. The soils of both areas are acid (pH < 5.0) and dystrophic (Ca2+ < 0.4 cmolc kg-1) with high concentration of exchangeable aluminium (Al3+ > 1.3 cmolc kg-1). The soil fertility do not differ between the aareas. However, the cerradão soil showed higher percentages of clay than the cerrado at all depths up to 2 m, which could result in a higher availability of water throughout the year for the trees. The mean annual temperature is around 24.4°C and the mean annual rainfall is 1600 mm, with the dry season between May and September.
The fieldwork is leaded by Ben Hur Marimon-Junior, Beatriz Schwantes Marimon, Amintas Nazareth Rossete and Ricardo Keichi Umetsu (UNEMAT). The research goals are to understand the dynamic processes involved in the characterization and functioning of ecosystems in the transition between Cerrado and Amazon forest. We will install measurements for below-ground, above-ground NPP monitoring and also CO2 efflux measurements.
We are monitoring: litterfall, titter bag decomposition and release of nutrients, litter layer, soil moisture, soil density, penetrability and infiltrability.
We will install: ingrowth cores, total and component of soil CO2 efflux, stem CO2 efflux, foliage (leaf area index, LAI), dendrometers and coarse woody debris.