, Volume 8, Issue 1, pp 91-98

Decomposers and the fire cycle in a phryganic (East Mediterranean) ecosystem

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Dehydrogenase activity, cellulose decomposition, nitrification, and CO2 release were measured for 2 years to estimate the effects of a wildfire over a phryganic ecosystem. In decomposers' subsystem we found that fire mainly affected the nitrification process during the whole period, and soil respiration for the second post-fire year, when compared with the control site. Our data suggest that after 3–4 months the activity of microbial decomposers is almost the same at the two sites, suggesting that fire is not a catastrophic event, but a simple perturbation common to Mediterranean-type ecosystems.