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Xiao-Yi Wang, Mao-Jun Zhong, Jian Zhang, Xing-Feng Si, Sheng-Nan Yang, Jian-Ping Jiang, Jun-Hua Hu. Multidimensional amphibian diversity and community structure along a 2 600 m elevational gradient on the eastern margin of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau. Zoological Research, 2022, 43(1): 40-51. doi: 10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2021.166
Citation: Xiao-Yi Wang, Mao-Jun Zhong, Jian Zhang, Xing-Feng Si, Sheng-Nan Yang, Jian-Ping Jiang, Jun-Hua Hu. Multidimensional amphibian diversity and community structure along a 2 600 m elevational gradient on the eastern margin of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau. Zoological Research, 2022, 43(1): 40-51. doi: 10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2021.166

Multidimensional amphibian diversity and community structure along a 2 600 m elevational gradient on the eastern margin of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau

doi: 10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2021.166
Funds:  This study was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (31770568, 32071544), Natural Science Foundation of Shanghai (20ZR1418100) and “Light of West China” Program of the Chinese Academy of Sciences
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  • Corresponding author: E-mail: hujh@cib.ac.cn
  • Received Date: 2021-09-09
  • Accepted Date: 2021-11-17
  • Available Online: 2021-11-17
  • Mountain systems harbor an evolutionarily unique and exceptionally rich biodiversity, especially for amphibians. However, the associated elevational gradients and underlying mechanisms of amphibian diversity in most mountain systems remain poorly understood. Here, we explored amphibian phylogenetic and functional diversity along a 2 600 m elevational gradient on Mount Emei on the eastern margin of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau in southwestern China. We also assessed the relative importance of spatial (area) and environmental factors (temperature, precipitation, solar radiation, normalized difference vegetation index, and potential evapotranspiration) in shaping amphibian distribution and community structure. Results showed that the phylogenetic and functional diversities were unimodal with elevation, while the standardized effect size of phylogenetic and functional diversity increased linearly with elevation. Phylogenetic net relatedness, nearest taxon index, and functional net relatedness index all showed a positive to negative trend with elevation, indicating a shift from clustering to overdispersion and suggesting a potential change in key processes from environmental filtering to competitive exclusion. Overall, our results illustrate the importance of deterministic processes in structuring amphibian communities in subtropical mountains, with the dominant role potentially switching with elevation. This study provides insights into the underlying assembly mechanisms of mountain amphibians, integrating multidimensional diversity.
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