, Volume 212, Issue 9, pp 1501-1512
Date: 04 May 2011

Recruitment dynamics of two low-density neotropical multiple-use tree species

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Abstract

In the present study, we describe the temporal and spatial variability in recruitment, growth, and mortality rates of seedlings and saplings of two low-density neotropical tree species, Dipteryx odorata and Copaifera reticulata in Eastern Amazonia, Brazil. As both species have important timber and non-timber uses, for each species we compare regeneration parameters among different management scenarios (sites used for timber logging, non-timber product extraction, and undisturbed forests). Results suggest that both species share similar natural regeneration characteristics. These include temporally and spatially asynchronous germination, existence of individuals that have more abundant and frequent fruit production than the average of the population and a positive influence of the mother tree crown on seedling and sapling density. The management activities analyzed did not influence the regeneration parameters of both species, which suggests that timber logging the way it was performed and current rates of D. odorata seed gathering and C. reticulata tapping at the study site are not sufficiently intense to threaten species population. However, some species characteristics, such as their reproductive strategies, light-demanding syndromes, low-dispersal ranges, and high-mortality rates of seedlings make both species vulnerable to exploitation.