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Henrik Balslev

PalmTraits 1.0, a species-level functional trait database of palms worldwide

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  • W. Daniel Kissling, University of Amsterdam
  • ,
  • Henrik Balslev
  • William J. Baker, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
  • ,
  • John Dransfield, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
  • ,
  • Bastian Göldel
  • ,
  • Jun Ying Lim, University of Amsterdam
  • ,
  • Renske E. Onstein, German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv) Halle-Jena-Leipzig
  • ,
  • Jens Christian Svenning

Plant traits are critical to plant form and function -including growth, survival and reproduction- and therefore shape fundamental aspects of population and ecosystem dynamics as well as ecosystem services. Here, we present a global species-level compilation of key functional traits for palms (Arecaceae), a plant family with keystone importance in tropical and subtropical ecosystems. We derived measurements of essential functional traits for all (>2500) palm species from key sources such as monographs, books, other scientific publications, as well as herbarium collections. This includes traits related to growth form, stems, armature, leaves and fruits. Although many species are still lacking trait information, the standardized and global coverage of the data set will be important for supporting future studies in tropical ecology, rainforest evolution, paleoecology, biogeography, macroecology, macroevolution, global change biology and conservation. Potential uses are comparative eco-evolutionary studies, ecological research on community dynamics, plant-animal interactions and ecosystem functioning, studies on plant-based ecosystem services, as well as conservation science concerned with the loss and restoration of functional diversity in a changing world.

Original languageEnglish
Article number178
JournalScientific Data
Volume6
Issue1
Number of pages13
ISSN2052-4463
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 24 Sep 2019

    Research areas

  • ATTALEA, CORYPHOIDEAE, DIVERSITY, EVOLUTION, FRUITS, GENUS, GLOBAL BIOGEOGRAPHY, LICUALA ARECACEAE, REVISION, SHEDS LIGHT

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