, Volume 43, Issue 1–2, pp 49–57

Diversity and stability in garrigue ecosystems after fire

  • L. Trabaud
  • J. Lepart

DOI: 10.1007/BF00121017

Cite this article as:
Trabaud, L. & Lepart, J. Vegetatio (1980) 43: 49. doi:10.1007/BF00121017


Vegetation dynamics after fire was studied in six communities in Bas-Languedoc (Southern France). 47 plots were observed by means of a permanent transect for ten years.

In the first part, we describe floristic richness, species fugacity and the way by which, the ‘terminal’ community (as defined by the last observation) appears. The dynamics of all these communities follows a simple and general model: floristic richness reaches its maximum during the first two years after a fire, then decreases and becomes stable. Fugacity follows a similar model, whereas the mergence of the ‘terminal’ community is rapid: one year after fire 70% of the plots have already acquired 75% of the species of the ‘terminal’ community. There is no succession (in the general sense of the word), but a progressive reappearance of the species belonging to the original community.

In the second part, we study floristic similarities between our plots and corresponding associations as described in literature. It appears that after a fire the floristic diversity of the landscape remains high; while the communities rapidly reach a relative maturity.

In the study area fire seems to be a rather superficial phenomenon; it does not lead to an important modification of the community dynamics, because probably the most frequent species in Bas-Languedoc developed adaptations to withstand fire.


Bas-Languedoc Diversity Fire Fugacity Garrigue ecosystems Mediterranean Southern France Stability 

Copyright information

© Dr. W. Junk b.v. Publishers 1980

Authors and Affiliations

  • L. Trabaud
    • 1
  • J. Lepart
    • 2
  1. 1.CERE/CNRSMontpellier CedexFrance
  2. 2.Ecothèque méditerranéeneMontpellier CedexFrance

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