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Ciencia forestal en México

versión impresa ISSN 1405-3586


MALDONADO MENDEZ, María de Lourdes et al. Reducción en riqueza de especies arbóreas por incendios en la Reserva Selva El Ocote, Chiapas. Rev. Cien. For. Mex [online]. 2009, vol.34, n.106, pp. 127-148. ISSN 1405-3586.

During the past decades, the tropical forest ecosystems have been more affected by forest fires. However, research on such impacts is still insufficient in order to have a better understanding of them. Such is the case of the Reserva Selva El Ocote (REBISO), in the State of Chiapas, Mexico, when after the severe fire seasons of 1998 and 2003, wildfire is considered the main threat for these ecosystems. The objective of this work was to study the effect of catastrophic wildfires on the composition and structure of the tropical rain forest of the Selva El Ocote. Plots of 1,000 m2 were set to sample mature trees and plots of 100 m2 for young trees and regeneration. A principal components analysis involving tree species richness, tree-density, diversity and equitability for trees, revealed that the non affected areas were separated from those burned by the 1998 fire, in turn these separated from a group that consisted of areas burned by the 1998 wildfire and that were restored, burned twice (1998 and 2003), and burned, restored and burned again. According to the "t" test, higher tree-species richness was present in the non burned areas in comparison to those of the other treatments. In the non burned areas the percentage of importance value (PIV) had lower values for the numerous dominant tree species, but the differences of PIV among species were small. In contrast, in the burned areas, few species dominated and accumulated a big proportion of the PIV.

Palabras llave : Diversity; fire effects; fire impacts; forest fires; rain forest perturbation; conversion to savanna.

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