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Title: Secondary forest succession in a tropical dry forest: patterns of development across a 50-year chronosequence in lowland Bolivia

Author: Kennard, Deborah K.;

Date: 2002

Source: Jounral of Tropical Ecology (2002) 18:53-66

Publication Series: Miscellaneous Publication

Description: Stand structure, species richness and population structures of tree species were characterized in 12 stands representing 50 y of succession following slash-and-burn agriculture in a tropical dry forest in lowland Bolivia. Estimates of tree species richness, canopy cover and basal area reached or surpassed 75% of mature forest levels in the 5-, 8-, and 23-y-old stands respectively. Total stem density of the 50-y-old stand was almost twice that of the mature forest stand. This rapid recovery may be due to a high percentage of sprouting tree species, potentially high seed fall into abandoned fields, or the disturbance history of the mature stand. The even-aged size-class structures, dominance of long-lived pioneers, and presence of charcoal and pottery shards in soils of the mature forest stand suggest it formed after a severe disturbance, possibly fire of anthropogenic origin.

Keywords: disturbance history, forest management, forest structure, secondary forests, species richness, succession, tropical dry forests

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Kennard, Deborah K. 2002. Secondary forest succession in a tropical dry forest: patterns of development across a 50-year chronosequence in lowland Bolivia. Jounral of Tropical Ecology (2002) 18:53-66


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