Factors Limiting Tropical Rain Forest Regeneration in Abandoned Pasture: Seed Rain, Seed Germination, Microclimate, and Soil
This research evaluates the ability of seeds to be dispersed into and germinate in areas of abandoned pasture.
Research Goals & Methods
Seed rain, germination of tree seedlings, percent herbaceous and woody cover, soil moisture, phosphorous, air temperature, and other microclimate conditions were tested in plots located 250m and 25m from the forest edge as well as within the primary forest.
Conclusions & Takeaways
The study found that microclimate and soil conditions were similar between the pasture and forest except in the dry season when the pasture had lower moisture. In areas where grasses were not cleared, germination was similar between the forest and pasture. The biggest difference between pasture and forest was the amount of seed dispersal. Seed rain in the pasture was dominated by four exotic grass species. The drop in seed rain of animal dispersed seeds with increasing distance from forest was more pronounced than in seed rain of wind dispersed. The author asserts that the questions of site conditions of the pasture are secondary to improving the ability of seeds to reach the plantation. The author suggests efforts to facilitate dispersal by planting native tree seedlings and installing bird perching structures.
Factors Limiting Tropical Rain Forest Regeneration in Abandoned Pasture: Seed Rain, Seed Germination, Microclimate, and Soil1. Biotropica. 1999;31:229–242. doi:10.1111/j.1744-7429.1999.tb00135.x..
- Environmental Studies Department, University of California, Santa Cruz, California, USA