Range and Richness of Vascular Land Plants: The Role of Variable Light
This is a research monograph and not a textbook. Here I demonstrate analytically how the observed, opposing, latitudinal gradients
in the average range and richness of local vascular land plant species are (outside the moist-tropical zone, at least) driven
primarily by the local temporal and spatial variability of shortwave radiative flux at the canopy top. (The term “richness”
as used here means the local number of different vascular land plant species unlimited by the size of the area sampled.) The
hypotheses are simplistic but are nevertheless convincingly accurate in extratropical latitudes when tested against observations
over the continental land surfaces of the Northern Hemisphere, the only areas tested here.
Citation: Eagleson, P. S. (2009), Range and Richness of Vascular Land Plants: The Role of Variable Light, 156 pp., AGU, Washington, D. C., doi:10.1029/061SP.