, Volume 117, Issue 1, pp 1–15

Diversity, structure and dynamics of a gallery forest in central Brazil

  • Jeanine Maria Felfili

DOI: 10.1007/BF00033255

Cite this article as:
Felfili, J.M. Vegetatio (1995) 117: 1. doi:10.1007/BF00033255


The structure and dynamics of approximately 64 ha of undisturbed gallery forest were studied over six years. Trees from 31 cm gbh (c. 10 cm dbh) were measured every three years from 1985. They were in 151 (10×20 m) permanent plots in the Gama forest in the Federal District of Brazil. Natural regeneration (individuals under 31 cm gbh) was measured in subplots (of 2×2 m, 5×5 m and 10×10 m) within the 200 m2 plots. The total tree flora (gbh≥31 cm) consisted of 93 species, 81 genera and 44 families in 1985. The Leguminosae, Myrtaceae and Rubiaceae were the families richest in number of species. Most individuals and species were under 45 cm diameter and 20 m high while the maximum diameter per species ranged from 30 to 95 cm. The density structure of trees and natural regeneration was similar, in which the densities of c. 80% of the species represented less than 1% of the total density. The periodic mean annual diameter increment for trees from 10 cm dbh, was c. 0.25 cm/year. Variability was high with coefficients of variation c. 100% or more. The Gama community may maintain tree diversity and structure in undisturbed conditions. Regeneration of c. 80% of the species was found in the establishing phase (poles); the diameter structure was typical of native forests with the number of individuals decreasing with increasing size classes and showing little change over the six years; recruitment compensated for the mortality of most of the abundant species. The soils in Gama gallery forest were dystrophic with high aluminium content. Multivariate analysis suggested the stream, natural gaps and edges as the main causes of floristic differentiation at the community level.

Key words

BrazilFloristicsFunctioningRiverine forestsSoilsTropics

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jeanine Maria Felfili
    • 1
  1. 1.University of Brasilia/Oxford Forestry Institute, Departamento de Engenharia FlorestalUniversidade de BrasiliaBrasiliaBrazil