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Spatiotemporal Distribution Patterns of Climbers along an Abiotic Gradient in Jhelum District, Punjab, Pakistan

Article

Majeed, M; Lu, LL; Haq, SM; Waheed, M; Sahito, HA; Fatima, S; Aziz, R; Bussmann, RW; Tariq, A; Ullah, I; Aslam, M

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2022

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13

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Climber-abiotic parameter interactions can have important ramifications for ecosystem's functions and community dynamics, but the extent to which these abiotic factors influence the spatial distributions of climber communities in the western Himalayas is unknown. The purpose of this study was to examine the taxonomic diversity, richness, and distribution patterns of climbers in relation to abiotic variables in the Jhelum District. The data were collected from 120 random transects between 2019 and 2021, from 360 sites within triplet quadrats (1080 quadrats), and classification and ordination analyses were used to categorize the sample transects. A total of 38 climber species belonging to 25 genera and 11 families were recorded from the study area. The Convolvulaceae were the dominant family (26.32%), followed by the Apocynaceae (21.05%), and Leguminosae (15.79%). The majority of the climbers were herbaceous in nature (71.05%), followed by woody (23.68%). Based on the relative density, the most dominant species was Vicia sativa (12.74). The majority of the species flowered during the months of March-April (28.04%), followed by August-September (26.31%). Abiotic factors have a significant influence on the distribution pattern and structure of climbers in the study area. The results show that the climbers react to the biotic environment in different ways. The findings will serve as the foundation for future botanical inventories and will be crucial for understanding the biological, ecological, and economic value of climbers in forest ecosystems. This will help forest management, conservation, and ecological restoration in the Himalayas.

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