Carbon dioxide and water vapour exchange in a tropical dry forest as influenced by the North American Monsoon System (NAMS)

Eli Rafael Perez-Ruiz, Jaime Garatuza-Payan, Christopher J. Watts, Julio Cesar Rodriguez, Enrico A. Yepez, Russell L. Scott

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


To better understand the effects and relationship between precipitation, net ecosystem carbon dioxide (NEE) and water vapor exchange (ET), we report a study conducted in the tropical dry forest (TDF) in the northwest of Mexico. Ecosystem gas exchange was measured using the eddy correlation technique during the presence of North American Monsoon System (NAMS) in 2006. Patterns in NEE and ET were different in wet and dry periods. Three markedly defined periods were found during the six-month study period. A pre-monsoon period, where gas exchange was close to zero. A monsoon period, divided in two stages: 1) early monsoon: a strong increase in the respiratory rate marked by a peak of positive values, with a maximum of 22 g CO2 m-2 day-1, and, 2) late monsoon: an assimilation period occurred in the peak of the monsoon period, with sustained values around -20 g CO2 m-2 day-1. The final was a post-monsoon period, where ecosystems returned to dormancy. NEE and ET trends in the TDF were similar to other seasonally dry ecosystems influenced by the NAMS. During the study period the TDF of Northwest Mexico acted as a sink capturing 374 g CO2 m2 with an ecosystem water use efficiency (-NEE/ET) comparable to other ecosystems in the region. Mechanistic information about biological and environmental variables controlling gas exchange dynamics is still necessary to predict how seasonally dry ecosystems would respond to climate change.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)556-563
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Arid Environments
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2010


  • Canopy gas exchange
  • Ecosystem water use efficiency
  • Eddy covariance
  • North-western Mexico
  • Seasonally dry ecosystem


Dive into the research topics of 'Carbon dioxide and water vapour exchange in a tropical dry forest as influenced by the North American Monsoon System (NAMS)'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this