Variability of throughfall quantity in a mixed evergreen-deciduous broadleaved forest in central China

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Mixed evergreen-deciduous broadleaved forest is the transitional type of evergreen broadleaved forest and deciduous broadleaved forest, and plays a unique eco-hydrologic role in terrestrial ecosystem. We investigated the spatio-temporal patterns of throughfall volume of the forest type in Shennongjia, central China. The results indicated that throughfall represented 84.8% of gross rainfall in the forest. The mean CV (coefficient of variation) of throughfall was 27.27%. Inter-event variability in stand-scale throughfall generation can be substantially altered due to changes in rainfall characteristics, throughfall CV decreased with increasing rainfall amount and intensity, and reached a quasi-constant level when rainfall amount reached 25 mm or rainfall intensity reached 2 mm h−1. During the leafed period, the spatial pattern of throughfall was highly temporal stable, which may result in spatial heterogeneity of soil moisture.

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