Community ecologists and foresters commonly view relative tolerance as the capacity of a species to survive in the understory of an established plant community. Diverse individual- and population-level attributes are commonly cited as indirect indicators of relative tolerance. Eight of these putative indicators of relative tolerance were tested for their ability in discriminating between species representing differing levels of relative tolerance; of these, only five were found to be valid. The indicators were even less accurate in discriminating between presumed intraspecific differences in relative tolerance. The species characteristics that appeared to have the greatest potential as indicators of relative tolerance involved stand density, leaf-area index and foliage retention time.
Intra- and Interspecific Tests of Some Indicators of Relative ToleranceForest Ecology and Management
Citation InformationParker, J.N. and J.N. Long (1989). Intra- and inter-specific tests of some indicators of relative tolerance. For. Ecol. and Management. 28(3-4):177-189