A Comparative Study of Tree Establishment in Abandoned Pasture and Mature Forest of Eastern Amazonia
This study compares seedling establishment, seed availability, seed predation, seedling herbivory, and abiotic barriers to tree establishment in recently abandoned pasture, treefall gaps, and mature forest understory in Pará State, Brazil.
Research Goals & Methods
Researchers created 3 study forest gaps by felling trees over 2 meters in height and monitored tree seedling and sprout populations for 2 years in in plots located in the 3 study systems. They examined soil seed supply through soil core collection. Seed deposition, seed predation, seedling herbivory, and abiotic factors were also measured.
Conclusions & Takeaways
Seedling establishment proved greatest in the treefall gaps and lowest in abandoned pasture. Abandoned pasture displayed tree establishment up to 20 times lower than other sites due to lack of tree seeds in the soil, a lack of bird and bat-dispersed seeds, and greater predation and herbivory than in mature forest.
A Comparative Study of Tree Establishment in Abandoned Pasture and Mature Forest of Eastern Amazonia. Oikos. 1996;76:25. doi:10.2307/3545745..
- Woods Hole Research Center, Woods Hole, MA
- Department of Biology, Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA
- Convenio EMBRAPA/Woods Hole Research Center, Belém, Pará, Brazil
- Museo Paraense Emilio Goeldi, Departamento de Zoologia, Belém, Pará, Brazil