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Species and spatial differences of vegetation rainfall interception capacity - a synthesis and meta-analysis in China
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  • Qiufen Zhang,
  • Xizhi Lv,
  • Xinxiao Yu,
  • Guodong Jia,
  • Ziqiang Liu
Qiufen Zhang
Yellow River Institute of Hydraulic Research
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Xizhi Lv
Yellow River Institute of Hydraulic Research
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Xinxiao Yu
Beijing Forestry University
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Guodong Jia
Beijing Forestry University
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Ziqiang Liu
Nanjing Forestry University
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Abstract

China has carried out many ecological restoration projects in the past. At present, there are large spatial differences in the hydrological effects of forest ecosystems in different regions of the country under heterogeneous conditions, which is not conducive to the macro guidance of ecological restoration projects. Canopy interception is an important link in the water cycle of the ecosystem. This paper attempts to use this index as a bridge to connect the research literature of existing ecological sites, so as to evaluate the differences in water resources distribution in different regions and vegetation ecosystems and analyze the main reasons for the differences. We combined canopy interception rate (I0) and canopy water storage ability (I) to interpret canopy interception, and collected site related geographic, meteorological and ecosystem structure information simultaneously in the literature to build up an original dataset. Analysis on the database showed that the comprehensive interception capacity of vegetation in the south was generally higher than that in the north, which was dominated by shrubs, and that the tree species had interception advantages. Mixed forest showed the best comprehensive interception capacity, while pure tree forest had better interception potential than shrubbery due to its biomass advantage. The actual interception capacity of shrubbery was better than pure tree forest due to the advantages of stand density and the dry climate. Results from the evaluation of canopy interception ability using different indexes were not consistent, meaning that evaluating canopy interception with multiple indexes may be more objective. The study also highlights that the current structural characteristics of shrubby forests in northern China may be counterproductive to mitigating drought, reducing the structural density of a given stand will increase the opportunity for precipitation to reach the surface, thereby increasing the amount of water available to ecosystems in arid areas. Maintaining the healthy growth of mixed forests is still the right choice for humid areas in the south.