_____updated: 14 March 2018

Takashi S. KOHYAMA

Plant architecture / Coexistence mechanisms / Tree community / Forest ecosystem

Laboratory of Terrestrial Ecology
Faculty of Environmental Earth Science, Hokkaido University. Contact

Course of Plant Ecology
Division of Biosphere Science
Graduate School of Environmental Science, Hokkaido University

Researcher IDs
ResearcherID: A-4031-2012
ORCID ID: 0000-0001-7186-8585

Research interest

New paper pdf:
Kohyama, Potts, Kohyama, Abd Rahman and Ashton, 2015, Am. Nat.

Wave-regenerated fir forest on Mt Shimagare (1978)

Dynamics and Maintenance Mechanisms of Forest Tree Communities and Ecosystems

    I started my research on forest community dynamics in rather simple subalpine fir forests of central Japan, and then extended to more complicated warm-temperate rain forests in southern Japan and tropical rain forests in southeast Asia. It is my purpose, as well as pleasure, to resolve the wonder of complex architecture and diversity in various natural forest systems, now endangered by human exploitation.

    It is necessary for the study of the life of forest tree species to describe not only physiological parameters but also architectural parameters of the organization of trees. The architecture of forest as a cumulative product of individual tree architecture regulates the life of individual trees. I have been analysing the species traits and interspecific interactions between co-occurring tree species in various forests in relation to the vertical structure of forest stand, and the shift of this structure due to the regeneration processes of the overall forest.

    In 1993 ,I proposed a new theory that the forest-architecture-dependent competition, particularly for light resource, can promote the stationary architecture of forest and multi-species stable coexistence, which provides a view to combine traditional production ecology, population ecology and community ecology of plants. Kohyama (2006) simulates the stable coexistence of twelve tree species, differentiating four maximum statue classes in each of three shade-tolerance classes, in a size-structured, patch-age dynamic forest landscape (see below).

    Time course of twelve tree species system of size-structured,
    patch-dynamic forest model (ref No. 57).
    Reddish, intolerant; yellowish, subtolerant; greenish, tolerant spp.

    These simulation studies are now related to the theory of foliage partitioning (Kohyama and Takada 2009, 2012), for further quantitative empirical tests.

    Undergoing change in forest ecosystems with global environmental change gives a unique lesson to all forest ecologists. I am carrying out researches on forest ecosystem monitoring alongside core projects GCTE and GLP of IGBP. I was in charge of SC IGBP for 2002-2007. Our main research sites are the Tomakomai Experimental Forest of Hokkaido University, the Serimbu Station in West Kalimantan, Indonesia (tropical lowland rain forest), and the Palangka Raya Station in Central Kalimantan, Indonesia (tropical peat swamp forest).


  • 1954___ Born in Tokyo on 30 October
  • 1978___ Bachelor of Science, Faculty of Science, Tokyo Metropolitan University
  • 1980___ Master of Science, Graduate School of Science, Kyoto University
  • 1983___ Doctor of Science, Graduate School of Science, Kyoto University
  • 1983-1985___ JSPS Post-Doctoral Fellow, Kyoto University
  • 1985___ Lecturer, Faculty of Education, Kagoshima University
  • 1987___ Associate Professor, Faculty of Education, Kagoshima University
  • 1991___ Associate Professor, Center for Ecological Research, Kyoto University
  • 1991-1992___ JSPS Visiting Scholar, Department of Plant Sciences, University of Cambridge
  • 1992___ Recipient, Botanical Society Award of Young Scientists (Botanical Society of Japan)
  • 1994-2005___ Professor, Laboratory of Regional Ecosystem Science, Graduate School of Environmental Earth Science, Hokkaido University
  • 1998-1999___ Bullard Fellow, Department of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology, Harvard University
    report as a Bullard Fellow (June 1999)
  • 2000-2008___ group leader, senior researcher, and adviser, Ecosystem Change Research Program, Frontier Research Center for Global Change, JAMSTEC
  • 2005-present___ Professor, Laboratory of Terrestrial Ecology, Faculty of Environmental Earth Science, Hokkaido University (re-organization of grad. school)
  • 2014___ Recipient, The 12th Ecological Society of Japan Award

Scientific publication
_________publication by Japanese is in Japanese page

See also ResearcherID page, or Google Scholar page
  1. Fujinuma, J., Potts, M.D., Abd Rahman, K., Harrison, R.D., Abd Razak, and Kohyama, T.S. (2018) Modular, hollow culms of rain-forest bamboos explain their persistence across a wide range of light environments. Journal of Tropical Ecology, 34, 1–16.
  2. Kohyama, T.S., Kohyama, T.I. and Sheil, D. (2017) Definition and estimation of vital rates from repeated censuses: choices, comparisons and bias corrections focusing on trees. Methods in Ecology and Evolution. DOI: 10.1111/2041-210X.12929
  3. Tiwari R.M., Shrestha, B.B. and Kohyama, T.S. (2017) Topographic and anthropogenic factors shaping subalpine Abies spectabilis forest in Langtang National Park, eastern Himalaya. Eurasian Journal of Forest Research, 20, 1-9.
  4. Miyata, R. and Kohyama, T.S., 2016. Light-exposed shoots of seven coexisting deciduous species show common photosynthetic responses to tree height. Oecologia, 182, 373-383.
  5. Kohyama, T.S., Potts, M.D., Kohyama, T.I., Abd Rahman K., and Ashton, P.S., 2015. Demographic properties shape tree size distribution in a Malaysian rain forest. American Naturalist, 185, 367-379.
  6. Iida, Y., Kohyama, T.S., Swenson, N.G., Su, S.-H., Chen, C.-T., Chiang, J.-M., and Sun, I-F., 2014. Linking functional traits and demographic rates in a subtropical tree community: the importance of size dependency. Journal of Ecology, 102, 641-650.
  7. Song, K., Kohyama, T.S., and Da, L.J., 2014. Transition patterns across an evergreen-deciduous broad-leaved forest ecotone: the effect of topographies. Journal of Vegetation Science, 25, 1257-1266. DOI: 10.1111/jvs.12156.
  8. Atikah, T.D., Rahajoe, J.S. and Kohyama, T.S., 2014. Differentiation in architectural properties and functional traits of forest-floor saplings among heath, peat swamp, and mixed dipterocarp forests. Tropics, 22, 157-167.
  9. Iida, I., Poorter,L., Sterck,F.J., Kassim, A.R., Potts, M.D., Kubo, T. and Kohyama, T.S., 2014. Linking size-dependent growth and mortality with architectural traits across 145 co-occurring tropical tree species. Ecology, 95, 353-363.
  10. Orou Matilo, A.T.B., Iida, Y. and Kohyama, T.S., 2013. Tree species composition and stand structure of woody savanna in Dahomey Gap. Tropics, 22, 39-57.
  11. Grubb, P.J., Bellingham, P.J., Kohyama, T.S., Piper, F.I. and Valido, A., 2013. Disturbance regimes, gap-demanding trees and seed mass related to tree height in warm temperate rain forests worldwide. Biological Reviews, 88, 701-744.
  12. Pontius, R.G.Jr., Gao, Y., Giner, N.M., Kohyama, T., Osaki, M. and Hirose, K. 2013. Design and Interpretation of Intensity Analysis Illustrated by Land Change in Central Kalimantan, Indonesia. Land, 2, 351-369.
  13. Kohyama, T.S. and Takada, T., 2012. One-sided competition for light promotes coexistence of forest trees that share the same adult height. Journal of Ecology, 100, 1501-1511.
  14. Iida, Y., Poorter, L., Sterck, F., Kassim, A. R., Kubo, T., Potts, M. & Kohyama, T. S., 2012. Wood density explains architectural differentiation across 145 co-occurring tropical tree species. Functional Ecology, 26, 274-282.
  15. Miyata, R., Kubo, T., Nabeshima, E. and Kohyama, T.S., 2011. Common allometric response of open-grown leader shoots to tree height in co-occurring deciduous broad-leaved trees. Annals of Botany, 108, 1279-1287.
  16. Iida, Y., Kohyama, T.S., Kubo, T., Kassim, A.R., Poorter, L., Sterck, F. and Potts, M.D., 2011. Tree architecture and life-history strategies across 200 co-occurring tropical tree species. Functional Ecology, 25, 1260-1268.
  17. Kohyama, T. and Takada, T., 2009. The stratification theory for plant coexistence promoted by one-sided competition. Journal of Ecology, 97, 463-471.
  18. Shiodera, S., Rahajoe, J.S. and Kohyama, T., 2008. Variation in longevity and traits of leaves among co-occurring understorey plants in a tropical montane forest. Journal of Tropical Ecology, 24, 121-133.
  19. Nishimura, T.B., Suzuki, E., Kohyama, T. and Tsuyuzaki, S., 2007. Mortality and growth of trees in peat-swamp and heath forests in Central Kalimantan after severe drought. Plant Ecology, 186, 165-177.
  20. Sato, H., Itoh, A. and Kohyama, T., 2007. SEIB-DGVM: A new dynamic global vegetation model using a spatially explicit individual-based approach. Ecological Modelling, 200, 279-307.
  21. Miyamoto, K., Rahajoe, J.S., Kohyama, T. and Mirmanto, E., 2007. Forest structure and primary productivity in a Bornean heath forest. Biotropica, 39, 35-42.
  22. Kohyama, T., Urabe, J., Hikosaka, K., Shibata, H., Yoshioka, T., Konohira, E., Murase, J. and Wada, E., 2007. Terrestrial ecosystems in monsoon Asia: scaling up from shoot module to watershed. In: Canadell J, Pataki D, Pitelka L (eds), Terrestrial Ecosystems in Changing World, pp. 285-296. The IGBP Series, Springer, Berlin.
  23. Kohyama, T., 2006. The effect of patch demography on the community structure of forest trees. Ecol. Res. 21, 346-355.____Sourse code of simulator
  24. Kubo, T. and Kohyama, T., 2005. Abies population dynamics simulated by a functional-structural tree model.. Ecol. Res. 20, 255-269.
  25. Kohyama, T., 2005. Scaling up from shifting gap mosaic to geographic distribution in the modeling of forest dynamics. Ecol. Res. 20, 302-312.____Sourse code of simulator
  26. Takahashi, K., Seino, T. and Kohyama, T., 2005. Plastic changes of leaf mass per area and leaf nitrogen content in response to canopy openings in saplings of eight deciduous broad-leaved tree species. Ecol. Res. 20, 17-23.
  27. Kohyama, T., Kubo, T. and Macklin, E., 2005. Effect of temporal autocorrelation on apparent growth rate variation in forest tree census data and an alternative distribution function of tree growth rate. Ecol. Res. 20, 11-15.
  28. Rahajoe, J.S. and Kohyama, T., 2003. The relationship between N,P returned via litter production and nutrient use efficiency of heath and peat swamp forests in Central Kalimantan. Tropics 13, 1-8.
  29. Mirmanto, E., Tsuyuzaki, S. and Kohyama, T., 2003. Investigation of the effects of distance from river and peat depth on tropical wetland forest communities. Tropics 12, 287-294.
  30. Rahajoe, J.S. and Kohyama, T., 2003. Effects of forest fire on leaf litter decomposition of two dominant species (Tristaniopsis obovata and Calophyllum pulcherrimum) in a heath forest of south Kalimantan. Tropics 12, 277-286.
  31. Akashi, N., Kohyama, T., and Matsui, K., 2003. Lateral and vertical crown associations in mixed forests. Ecol. Res., 18, 455-461.
  32. Kohyama, T., Suzuki, E., Partomihardjo, T., Yamada, T., and Kubo, T., 2003. Tree species differentiation in growth, recruitment and allometry in relation to maximum height in a Bornean mixed dipterocarp forest. J. Ecol., 91, 797-806.
  33. Miyamoto, K., Suzuki, E., Kohyama, T., Seino, T., Mirmanto, E. and Simbolon, H., 2003. Habitat differentiation among tree species with small-scale variation of humus depth and topography in a tropical heath forest of Central Kalimantan, Indonesia. J. Trop.Ecol., 19, 1-13.
  34. Nishimura, T.B. and Kohyama, T., 2002. Formation and maintenance of community boundaries in a sub-alpine forest landscape in norhtern Japan. J. Veg. Sci., 13, 555-564.
  35. Norby, R.J., Ogle, K., Curtis. P.S., Badeck, F.-W., Huth , A., Hurtt, G.C., Kohyama, T. and Penuelas, J., 2001. Aboveground growth and competition in forest gap models: an analysis for studies of climatic change. Clim. Change, 51, 415-447.
  36. Takahashi, K., Seino, T., and Kohyama, T., 2001. Responses to canopy openings in architectural development of saplings in eight deciduous broad-leaved tree species. Can. J. For. Res., 31, 1336-1347.
  37. Takenaka, A., Takahashi, K. and Kohyama, T., 2001. Optimal leaf display and biomass partitioning for efficient light capture in an understorey palm, Licuala arbuscula. Funct. Ecol. 15, 660-668.
  38. Kohyama, T., Suzuki, E., Partomihardjo, T. and Yamada, T., 2001. Dynamic steady state of patch-mosaic tree-size structure of a mixed dipterocarp forest regulated by local crowding. Ecol. Res., 16, 85-98.
  39. Kubo, T., Kohyama, T., Potts, M.D. and Ashton, P.S., 2000. Mortality rate estimation, when inter-census intervals vary. J. Trop. Ecol., 16, 753-756.
  40. Takahashi, K. and Kohyama, T., 1999. Size-structure dynamics of two conifers in relation to understorey dwarf bamboo: a simulation study. J. Veg. Sci., 10, 833-842.
  41. Kohyama, T. Suzuki, E., Aiba, S. and Seino, T., 1999. Functional differentiation and positive feedback enhancing plant biodiversity. Biology of Biodiversity (ed. by M. Kato), pp. 179-191. Springer, Tokyo.
  42. Kohyama, T. and Takada, T., 1998. Recruitment rates in forest plots: Gf estimates using growth rates and size distributions. J. Ecol., 86, 633-639.
  43. Aiba, S. and Kohyama, T. , 1997. Crown architecture and life-history traits of 14 tree species in a warm-temperate rain forest: significance of spatial heterogeneity. J. Ecol., 85, 611-624.
  44. Takahashi, T. and Kohyama, T. , 1997. Crown architecture of two understory palm species of the genus Licuala in a tropical rain forest. Plant Spec. Biol., 12, 35-41.
  45. Kohyama, T. and Aiba, S., 1997. Dynamics of primary and secondary warm-temperate rain forests in Yakushima Islands. Tropics, 6, 383-392.
  46. Kohyama, T., 1996. The role of architecture in enhancing plant species diversity. Biodiversity: an ecological perspective (ed. by T. Abe, S.A. Levin and M. Higashi), pp. 21-33. Springer, NY.
  47. Bellingham, P.J., Kohyama, T. and Aiba, S., 1996. The effects of a typhoon on Japanese warm- temperate rain forests. Ecological Research, 11, 229-247.
  48. Aiba, S. and Kohyama, T., 1996. Tree species stratification in relation to allometry and demography in a warm-temperate rain forest. J. Ecol., 84, 207-218.
  49. Kohyama, T. and Shigesada, N., 1995. A size-distribution-based model of forest dynamics along a latitudinal environmental gradient. Vegetatio, 121, 117-126.
  50. Nakashizuka, T. and Kohyama, T., 1995. The significance of the asymmetric effect of crowding for coexistence in a conifer-broadleaved forest. J. Veg. Sci., 6, 509-516.
  51. Turner, I.M., Gong, W.K., Ong, J.E., Bujang, J.S. and Kohyama, T., 1995. The architecture and allometry of mangrove saplings. Funct. Ecol., 9, 205-212.
  52. Kohyama, T., 1995. Spatial and temporal patterns of subalpine Abies forests in Central Japan. In E.O. Box, ed., Vegetation Science in Forestry, pp. 391-407. Kluwer, Dordrecht.
  53. Kohyama, T., Suzuki, E. and Hotta, M., 1994. Spatial distribution pattern of representative tree species in a foothill rain forest in West Sumatra. Tropics, 4, 1-15.
  54. Kohyama, T. and Grubb, P.J., 1994. Below- and above-ground allometries of shade-tolerant seedlings in a Japanese warm-temperate rain forest. Funct. Ecol., 8, 229-236.
  55. Kohyama, T., 1994. Size-structure-based models of forest dynamics to interpret population- and community-level mechanisms. J. Plant Res., 107, 107-116.
  56. Kohyama, T., 1993. Size-structured tree populations in gap-dynamic forest - the forest architecture hypothesis for the stable coexistence of species. J. Ecol. 81, 131-143.
  57. Mukhtar, E., Suzuki, E., Kohyama, T. and Rahman, M., 1992. Regeneration process of a climax Calophyllum cf. soulattri in tropical rain forest of West Sumatra. Tropics, 2, 1-12.
  58. Kohyama, T., 1992. Density-size dynamics of trees simulated by a one-sided competition multi-species model of rain forest stands. Ann. Bot., 70, 451-460.
  59. Kohyama, T., 1992. Size-structured multi-species model of rain forest trees. Funct. Ecol., 6, 206-212.
  60. Suzuki, E. and Kohyama, T., 1991. Spatial distribution of wind-dispersed fruits and trees of Swintonia schwenkii (Anacardiaceae) in a tropical forest of West Sumatra. Tropics, 1, 131-142.
  61. Kohyama, T., 1991. Simulating stationary size distribution of trees in rain forests. Ann. Bot., 68, 173-180.
  62. Kohyama, T., 1991. A functional model describing sapling growth under a tropical forest canopy. Funct. Ecol., 5, 83-90.
  63. Kohyama, T. and Hotta, M., 1990. Significance of allometry in tropical saplings. Funct. Ecol., 4, 515-521.
  64. Kohyama, T., Hara, T. and Tadaki, Y., 1990. Patterns of trunk diameter, tree height and crown depth in crowded Abies stands. Ann. Bot., 65, 567-574.
  65. Kohyama, T. and Hara, T., 1989. Frequency distribution of tree growth rate in natural forest stands. Ann. Bot., 64, 47- 57.
  66. Kohyama, T., 1989. Simulation of the structural development of warm-temperate rain forest stands. Ann. Bot., 63, 625-634.
  67. Kohyama, T., 1988. Etiology of 'Shimagare' dieback and regeneration in subalpine Abies forests of Japan. GeoJournal, 17, 201-208.
  68. Kohyama, T., 1988. A function describing all-sized trunk diameter distribution in warm-temperate rain forests. Bot. Mag. Tokyo, 101, 207-212.
  69. Kohyama, T., 1987. Significance of architecture and allometry in saplings. Funct. Ecol., 1, 399-404.
  70. Kohyama, T., 1987. Stand dynamics in a primary warm-temperate rain forest analyzed by the diffusion equation. Bot. Mag. Tokyo, 100, 305-317.
  71. Kohyama, T. and Hotta, M.,1986. Growth analysis of Sumatran Monophyllaea, possessing only one leaf throughout perennial life. Plant Species Biology, 1, 117-125.
  72. Kohyama, T., 1986. Tree size structure of stands and each species in primary warm-temperate rain forests of southern Japan. Bot. Mag. Tokyo, 99, 267-279.
  73. Kohyama, T., 1984. Regeneration and coexistence of two Abies species dominating subalpine forests in central Japan. Oecologia, 62, 156-161.
  74. Kohyama, T., 1983. Seedling stage of two subalpine Abies species in distinction from sapling stage: a matter-economic analysis. Bot. Mag. Tokyo, 96, 49-65.
  75. Kohyama, T., 1982. Studies on the Abies population of Mt. Shimagare II. Reproductive and life history traits. Bot. Mag. Tokyo, 95, 167-181.
  76. Kohyama, T. and Fujita, N., 1981. Studies on the Abies population of Mt. Shimagare I. Survivorship curve. Bot. Mag. Tokyo, 94, 55-68.
  77. Kohyama, T., 1980. Growth pattern of Abies mariesii saplings under conditions of open-growth and suppression. Bot. Mag. Tokyo, 93, 13-24.

Takashi S. Kohyama
Faculty of Environmental Earth Science, Hokkaido University
Kita-ku, Sapporo 060-0810, Japan
Fax: +81.11.706.4954 Tel: +81.11.706.2260
Email: kohyama_[at]_ees.hokudai.ac.jp

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