OJF  Vol.5 No.1 , January 2015
The Relationships among Community Type, Peat Layer Thickness, Belowground Carbon Storage and Habitat Age of Mangrove Forests in Pohnpei Island, Micronesia
Abstract: This paper quantifies the relationships among community type, peat layer thickness and habitat age of the mangrove forests in Pohnpei Island, Micronesia and provides a discussion concerning the primary succession and the belowground carbon storage of the main mangrove community types. The ages of the habitat were estimated from a relationship between the thickness of the mangrove peat layer and the formative period, which was decided by calibrated radiocarbon ages. Mangrove communities in the coral reef type habitat were generally arranged in the following order, from seaward to landward: 1) the Rhizophora stylosa or Sonneratia alba community (I or II communities), 2) the typical subunit of the S. alba subcommunity of the Rhizophora apiculata— Bruguiera gymnorrhiza community (III(2)a subunit) and 3) the Xylocarpus granatum subunit of the same subcommunity of the same community (III(2)b subunit). Their habitat ages were estimated to be younger than 460 years, between 360 and 1070 years and between 860 and 2300 years, respectively. Based on these results and other evidences such as photosynthetic characteristics and pollen analysis derived from the previous studies, the primary succession was inferred to have progressed in the order mentioned above. Belowground stored carbon for the main community types in the coral reef type habitat were estimated to be less than 370 t C ha-1 for the I and the II communities, between 290 and 860 t C ha-1 for the III(2)a subunit and between 700 and 1850 t C ha-1 for the III(2)b subunit.
Cite this paper: Fujimoto, K. , Mochida, Y. , Kikuchi, T. , Tabuchi, R. , Hirata, Y. and Lihpai, S. (2015) The Relationships among Community Type, Peat Layer Thickness, Belowground Carbon Storage and Habitat Age of Mangrove Forests in Pohnpei Island, Micronesia. Open Journal of Forestry, 5, 48-56. doi: 10.4236/ojf.2015.51006.
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