Effects of postfire logging on soil and vegetation recovery in a Pinus halepensis Mill. forest of Greece
After a wildfire in a Pinus halepensis Mill. forest, in northern Greece, the burned trees were logged and the logs were removed either by mechanical or animal traction. The effects of logging and log removal methods on soil and vegetation recovery were evaluated comparing the logged sites with a burned but unlogged site and the unburned forest. Fire and logging did not affect the soil pH and caused only a short-term reduction in organic matter content. Two years after the fire, the highest rates of soil loss were observed in the logged area where mules were used for log removal. Soil moisture showed some differences between treatments during the first year after fire but then values were similar. Logging and particularly the use of skidders for log removal caused an initial increase in the amount of exposed bare ground but later when vegetation cover increased differences were minimized. The main woody species showed a species specific response to the treatments and while seeder species were favoured in the unlogged sites the same was not true for the respouters. In general, the growth and survival of pine seedlings was not affected by treatments.
KeywordsBiomass Burning Transportation Germinate Compaction
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