Fire severity as a key factor in post-fire regeneration of Pinus pinaster (Ait.) in Central Portugal
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Mediterranean pine woodlands are strongly affected by wildfires; however, there are knowledge gaps in the role of fire severity on Pinus pinaster Ait. regeneration.
The principal questions were: (a) does post-fire regeneration of Maritime Pine differ where canopies were consumed to a low vs. high degree and (b) which factors, besides fire severity, could explain these differences.
Pine recruitment was monitored from 2 to 36 months after a summer wildfire in 18 25 m2 plots, equally divided over two fire severity classes based on crown consumption. Besides the degree of crown consumption, three quantitative fire severity indices as well as post-fire site conditions, seed input and understory vegetation recovery were measured.
Pine seedling densities were consistently higher in the plots with low than high crown consumption but due to marked spatial variability, they were only significantly different at two out of the eight sampling occasions. This variability could be explained by a quantitative index based on the diameter of twigs, as well as by seed input and post-fire site conditions (ash and litter cover).
Fire severity was found to strongly affect the pine recruitment following wildfire, using both a qualitative visual severity index and a quantitative, more labour-intensive one.
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- Fire severity as a key factor in post-fire regeneration of Pinus pinaster (Ait.) in Central Portugal
Annals of Forest Science
Volume 69, Issue 4 , pp 489-498
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- Fire severity
- Pinus pinaster
- Post-fire regeneration
- Post-fire site conditions
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