WorldWideScience

Sample records for savannas

  1. Deciphering the distribution of the savanna biome

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Lehmann, CER

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available to rainfall. We identified three continental divergences in the limits of savanna that could not be explained by environment. Climate and soils do not have a deterministic effect on the distribution of savanna. Over the range of savanna, some proportion...

  2. Tropical savannas and dry forests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pennington, R Toby; Lehmann, Caroline E R; Rowland, Lucy M

    2018-05-07

    In the tropics, research, conservation and public attention focus on rain forests, but this neglects that half of the global tropics have a seasonally dry climate. These regions are home to dry forests and savannas (Figures 1 and 2), and are the focus of this Primer. The attention given to rain forests is understandable. Their high species diversity, sheer stature and luxuriance thrill biologists today as much as they did the first explorers in the Age of Discovery. Although dry forest and savanna may make less of a first impression, they support a fascinating diversity of plant strategies to cope with stress and disturbance including fire, drought and herbivory. Savannas played a fundamental role in human evolution, and across Africa and India they support iconic megafauna. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Greenhouse gas emissions from Savanna ( Miombo ) woodlands ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Natural vegetation represents an important sink for greenhouse gases (GHGs); however, there is relatively little information available on emissions from southern African savannas. The effects of clearing savanna woodlands for crop production on soil fluxes of N2O, CO2 and CH4 were studied on clay (Chromic luvisol) and ...

  4. Tree-grass interactions in savannas

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Scholes, RJ

    1997-01-01

    Full Text Available Savannas occur where trees and grasses interact to create a biome that is neither grassland nor forest. Woody and gramineous plants interact by many mechanisms, some negative (competition) and some positive (facilitation). The strength and sign...

  5. Determinants of woody cover in African savannas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sankaran, M.; Hanan, N.P.; Scholes, Robert J.; Ratnam, J.; Augustine, D.J.; Cade, B.S.; Gignoux, J.; Higgins, S.I.; Le, Roux X.; Ludwig, F.; Ardo, J.; Banyikwa, F.; Bronn, A.; Bucini, G.; Caylor, K.K.; Coughenour, M.B.; Diouf, A.; Ekaya, W.; Feral, C.J.; February, E.C.; Frost, P.G.H.; Hiernaux, P.; Hrabar, H.; Metzger, K.L.; Prins, H.H.T.; Ringrose, S.; Sea, W.; Tews, J.; Worden, J.; Zambatis, N.

    2005-01-01

    Savannas are globally important ecosystems of great significance to human economies. In these biomes, which are characterized by the co-dominance of trees and grasses, woody cover is a chief determinant of ecosystem properties 1-3. The availability of resources (water, nutrients) and disturbance regimes (fire, herbivory) are thought to be important in regulating woody cover1,2,4,5, but perceptions differ on which of these are the primary drivers of savanna structure. Here we show, using data from 854 sites across Africa, that maximum woody cover in savannas receiving a mean annual precipitation (MAP) of less than ???650 mm is constrained by, and increases linearly with, MAP. These arid and semi-arid savannas may be considered 'stable' systems in which water constrains woody cover and permits grasses to coexist, while fire, herbivory and soil properties interact to reduce woody cover below the MAP-controlled upper bound. Above a MAP of ???650 mm, savannas are 'unstable' systems in which MAP is sufficient for woody canopy closure, and disturbances (fire, herbivory) are required for the coexistence of trees and grass. These results provide insights into the nature of African savannas and suggest that future changes in precipitation 6 may considerably affect their distribution and dynamics. ?? 2005 Nature Publishing Group.

  6. Biomass burning in West African savannas

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Menaut, J.C.; Abbadie, L.; Lavenu, F.; Loudjani, P.; Podaire, A.

    1991-01-01

    This chapter approaches the influence of West African savanna ecosystems on the regional climate by giving, as precisely as possible, the amount of volatilized elements (e.g., carbon, nitrogen, and sulfur) annually released by bush fires into the atmosphere. In spite of the relative functional similarity of West African savannas, fire behavior and effects vary with the different bioclimatic and phytogeographic zones of the region: Guinea or humid zone; Sudan or mesic zone; and, Sahel or arid zone. In order to reach an acceptable accuracy, results are given for each of the zones described and summarized for West Africa

  7. Determinants of woody cover in African savannas

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Sankaran, M

    2005-12-08

    Full Text Available workshop on savanna complexity funded by the NSF. We thank R. Boone, I. McHugh, R. Grant, H. Biggs, W. T. Starmer, P. M. Barbosa, D. Ruess, J. Rettenmayer, C. Williams, J. Klein, M. T. Anderson, W. J. Parton, J. C. Neff, N. Govender and the Kruger Park...

  8. Savanna browse production. 2: Prediction | Penderis | African ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Our study was initiated with the aim of modelling browse production rates of key savanna tree species in the northern Zululand region of KwaZulu-Natal, with the assumption that browse production equates to utilised browse biomass. Predictive models for the production of browse, at different game feeding levels, ...

  9. Restoration of midwestern oak woodlands and savannas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dan C. Dey; John M. Kabrick

    2015-01-01

    There are various definitions for savanna and woodland in the ecological literature. Characteristic elements of each community are broadly defined and often overlap according to the authorities (Curtis 1959; Nuzzo 1986; Nelson 2010). Some confusion is inevitable when categorizing what is in reality a continuum of states from prairie to forest in which there can be much...

  10. Light hydrocarbon emissions from African savanna burnings

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bonsang, B.; Lambert, G.; Boissard, C.C.

    1991-01-01

    A study was undertaken in West Africa to determine the background mixing ratio of nonmethane hydrocarbons (NMHC) during the dry season and to measure the composition of savanna burnings. The experiment was conducted from 13 to 22 January 1989 in the experimental station located at the border of the tropical rainforest and savanna. Samples were collected during aircraft flights at 2,400 m in the free troposphere, at 400 m in the haze layer and in a smoke plume at 200 m altitude. Samples representing the ground-level evolution of the local background were collected at 10 m altitude. Fire samples were collected at a short distance from the fires during the intensive experiments. Results are presented in tables and indicate that the effect of NMHC produced by biomass burning on the tropospheric photochemistry is limited to a few species, namely, C 2 -C 4 alkenes

  11. Unsustainable fuelwood extraction from South African savannas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wessels, K. J.; Colgan, M. S.; Erasmus, B. F. N.; Asner, G. P.; Twine, W. C.; Mathieu, R.; van Aardt, J. A. N.; Fisher, J. T.; Smit, I. P. J.

    2013-03-01

    Wood and charcoal supply the majority of sub-Saharan Africa’s rural energy needs. The long-term supply of fuelwood is in jeopardy given high consumption rates. Using airborne light detection and ranging (LiDAR), we mapped and investigated savanna aboveground biomass across contrasting land uses, ranging from densely populated communal areas to highly protected areas in the Lowveld savannas of South Africa. We combined the LiDAR observations with socio-economic data, biomass production rates and fuelwood consumption rates in a supply-demand model to predict future fuelwood availability. LiDAR-based biomass maps revealed disturbance gradients around settlements up to 1.5 km, corresponding to the maximum distance walked to collect fuelwood. At current levels of fuelwood consumption (67% of households use fuelwood exclusively, with a 2% annual reduction), we calculate that biomass in the study area will be exhausted within thirteen years. We also show that it will require a 15% annual reduction in consumption for eight years to a level of 20% of households using fuelwood before the reduction in biomass appears to stabilize to sustainable levels. The severity of dwindling fuelwood reserves in African savannas underscores the importance of providing affordable energy for rural economic development.

  12. Unsustainable fuelwood extraction from South African savannas

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wessels, K J; Colgan, M S; Asner, G P; Erasmus, B F N; Twine, W C; Fisher, J T; Mathieu, R; Van Aardt, J A N; Smit, I P J

    2013-01-01

    Wood and charcoal supply the majority of sub-Saharan Africa’s rural energy needs. The long-term supply of fuelwood is in jeopardy given high consumption rates. Using airborne light detection and ranging (LiDAR), we mapped and investigated savanna aboveground biomass across contrasting land uses, ranging from densely populated communal areas to highly protected areas in the Lowveld savannas of South Africa. We combined the LiDAR observations with socio-economic data, biomass production rates and fuelwood consumption rates in a supply–demand model to predict future fuelwood availability. LiDAR-based biomass maps revealed disturbance gradients around settlements up to 1.5 km, corresponding to the maximum distance walked to collect fuelwood. At current levels of fuelwood consumption (67% of households use fuelwood exclusively, with a 2% annual reduction), we calculate that biomass in the study area will be exhausted within thirteen years. We also show that it will require a 15% annual reduction in consumption for eight years to a level of 20% of households using fuelwood before the reduction in biomass appears to stabilize to sustainable levels. The severity of dwindling fuelwood reserves in African savannas underscores the importance of providing affordable energy for rural economic development. (letter)

  13. Can savannas help balance the South African greenhouse gas budget?

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Scholes, RJ

    1996-02-01

    Full Text Available This article discusses the South African Greenhouse Experiment on Savannas (SAGES) study conducted by the CSIR' Division of Forest Science and Technology (Foretek) on the role of savannas in the balance of the greenhouse gas budget of South Africa...

  14. Fire in Australian savannas: from leaf to landscape

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beringer, Jason; Hutley, Lindsay B; Abramson, David; Arndt, Stefan K; Briggs, Peter; Bristow, Mila; Canadell, Josep G; Cernusak, Lucas A; Eamus, Derek; Edwards, Andrew C; Evans, Bradley J; Fest, Benedikt; Goergen, Klaus; Grover, Samantha P; Hacker, Jorg; Haverd, Vanessa; Kanniah, Kasturi; Livesley, Stephen J; Lynch, Amanda; Maier, Stefan; Moore, Caitlin; Raupach, Michael; Russell-Smith, Jeremy; Scheiter, Simon; Tapper, Nigel J; Uotila, Petteri

    2015-01-01

    Savanna ecosystems comprise 22% of the global terrestrial surface and 25% of Australia (almost 1.9 million km2) and provide significant ecosystem services through carbon and water cycles and the maintenance of biodiversity. The current structure, composition and distribution of Australian savannas have coevolved with fire, yet remain driven by the dynamic constraints of their bioclimatic niche. Fire in Australian savannas influences both the biophysical and biogeochemical processes at multiple scales from leaf to landscape. Here, we present the latest emission estimates from Australian savanna biomass burning and their contribution to global greenhouse gas budgets. We then review our understanding of the impacts of fire on ecosystem function and local surface water and heat balances, which in turn influence regional climate. We show how savanna fires are coupled to the global climate through the carbon cycle and fire regimes. We present new research that climate change is likely to alter the structure and function of savannas through shifts in moisture availability and increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide, in turn altering fire regimes with further feedbacks to climate. We explore opportunities to reduce net greenhouse gas emissions from savanna ecosystems through changes in savanna fire management. PMID:25044767

  15. Fire-free land use in pre-1492 Amazonian savannas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iriarte, José; Power, Mitchell J; Rostain, Stéphen; Mayle, Francis E; Jones, Huw; Watling, Jennifer; Whitney, Bronwen S; McKey, Doyle B

    2012-04-24

    The nature and scale of pre-Columbian land use and the consequences of the 1492 "Columbian Encounter" (CE) on Amazonia are among the more debated topics in New World archaeology and paleoecology. However, pre-Columbian human impact in Amazonian savannas remains poorly understood. Most paleoecological studies have been conducted in neotropical forest contexts. Of studies done in Amazonian savannas, none has the temporal resolution needed to detect changes induced by either climate or humans before and after A.D. 1492, and only a few closely integrate paleoecological and archaeological data. We report a high-resolution 2,150-y paleoecological record from a French Guianan coastal savanna that forces reconsideration of how pre-Columbian savanna peoples practiced raised-field agriculture and how the CE impacted these societies and environments. Our combined pollen, phytolith, and charcoal analyses reveal unexpectedly low levels of biomass burning associated with pre-A.D. 1492 savanna raised-field agriculture and a sharp increase in fires following the arrival of Europeans. We show that pre-Columbian raised-field farmers limited burning to improve agricultural production, contrasting with extensive use of fire in pre-Columbian tropical forest and Central American savanna environments, as well as in present-day savannas. The charcoal record indicates that extensive fires in the seasonally flooded savannas of French Guiana are a post-Columbian phenomenon, postdating the collapse of indigenous populations. The discovery that pre-Columbian farmers practiced fire-free savanna management calls into question the widely held assumption that pre-Columbian Amazonian farmers pervasively used fire to manage and alter ecosystems and offers fresh perspectives on an emerging alternative approach to savanna land use and conservation that can help reduce carbon emissions.

  16. A continental analysis of correlations between tree patterns in African savannas and human and environmental variables

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Groen, T.A.; Langevelde, van F.; Vijver, van de C.A.D.M.; Raad, de A.L.; Leeuw, de J.; Prins, H.H.T.

    2011-01-01

    This study analyses possible relationships between natural processes taking place in savannas and the tree patterns found in savannas. This can lead to new hypotheses about which processes are driving savanna physiognomy. To do so tree patterns were quantified for African savannas from historical

  17. Modeling soil moisture memory in savanna ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gou, S.; Miller, G. R.

    2011-12-01

    Antecedent soil conditions create an ecosystem's "memory" of past rainfall events. Such soil moisture memory effects may be observed over a range of timescales, from daily to yearly, and lead to feedbacks between hydrological and ecosystem processes. In this study, we modeled the soil moisture memory effect on savanna ecosystems in California, Arizona, and Africa, using a system dynamics model created to simulate the ecohydrological processes at the plot-scale. The model was carefully calibrated using soil moisture and evapotranspiration data collected at three study sites. The model was then used to simulate scenarios with various initial soil moisture conditions and antecedent precipitation regimes, in order to study the soil moisture memory effects on the evapotranspiration of understory and overstory species. Based on the model results, soil texture and antecedent precipitation regime impact the redistribution of water within soil layers, potentially causing deeper soil layers to influence the ecosystem for a longer time. Of all the study areas modeled, soil moisture memory of California savanna ecosystem site is replenished and dries out most rapidly. Thus soil moisture memory could not maintain the high rate evapotranspiration for more than a few days without incoming rainfall event. On the contrary, soil moisture memory of Arizona savanna ecosystem site lasts the longest time. The plants with different root depths respond to different memory effects; shallow-rooted species mainly respond to the soil moisture memory in the shallow soil. The growing season of grass is largely depended on the soil moisture memory of the top 25cm soil layer. Grass transpiration is sensitive to the antecedent precipitation events within daily to weekly timescale. Deep-rooted plants have different responses since these species can access to the deeper soil moisture memory with longer time duration Soil moisture memory does not have obvious impacts on the phenology of woody plants

  18. Challenges and opportunities in land surface modelling of savanna ecosystems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Whitley

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available The savanna complex is a highly diverse global biome that occurs within the seasonally dry tropical to sub-tropical equatorial latitudes and are structurally and functionally distinct from grasslands and forests. Savannas are open-canopy environments that encompass a broad demographic continuum, often characterised by a changing dominance between C3-tree and C4-grass vegetation, where frequent environmental disturbances such as fire modulates the balance between ephemeral and perennial life forms. Climate change is projected to result in significant changes to the savanna floristic structure, with increases to woody biomass expected through CO2 fertilisation in mesic savannas and increased tree mortality expected through increased rainfall interannual variability in xeric savannas. The complex interaction between vegetation and climate that occurs in savannas has traditionally challenged terrestrial biosphere models (TBMs, which aim to simulate the interaction between the atmosphere and the land surface to predict responses of vegetation to changing in environmental forcing. In this review, we examine whether TBMs are able to adequately represent savanna fluxes and what implications potential deficiencies may have for climate change projection scenarios that rely on these models. We start by highlighting the defining characteristic traits and behaviours of savannas, how these differ across continents and how this information is (or is not represented in the structural framework of many TBMs. We highlight three dynamic processes that we believe directly affect the water use and productivity of the savanna system: phenology, root-water access and fire dynamics. Following this, we discuss how these processes are represented in many current-generation TBMs and whether they are suitable for simulating savanna fluxes.Finally, we give an overview of how eddy-covariance observations in combination with other data sources can be used in model

  19. Description of the savanna ecosystem project, Nylsvley, South Africa

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    CSIR National Scientific Programmes Unit, CSIR

    1975-12-01

    Full Text Available practices. These savannas stretch in a broad belt across southern Africa and have been greatly affected by increasing exploitation during the past hundred years. Increases in useful productivity have been accompanied by such problems as bush encroachment...

  20. African savanna-forest boundary dynamics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cuni Sanchez, Aida; White, Lee J. T.; Calders, Kim

    2016-01-01

    -term inventory plots we quantify changes in vegetation structure, above-ground biomass (AGB) and biodiversity of trees ≥10 cm diameter over 20 years for five vegetation types: savanna; colonising forest (F1), monodominant Okoume forest (F2); young Marantaceae forest (F3); and mixed Marantaceae forest (F4...... substantially in structure, AGB or diversity. Critically, the stability of the F3 stage implies that this stage may be maintained for long periods. Soil carbon was low, and did not show a successional gradient as for AGB and diversity. TLS vertical plant profiles showed distinctive differences amongst...... the vegetation types, indicating that this technique can improve ecological understanding. We highlight two points: (i) as forest colonises, changes in biodiversity are much slower than changes in forest structure or AGB; and (ii) all forest types store substantial quantities of carbon. Multidecadal monitoring...

  1. The biodiversity cost of carbon sequestration in tropical savanna

    OpenAIRE

    Abreu, Rodolfo C. R.; Hoffmann, William A.; Vasconcelos, Heraldo L.; Pilon, Natashi A.; Rossatto, Davi R.; Durigan, Giselda

    2017-01-01

    Tropical savannas have been increasingly viewed as an opportunity for carbon sequestration through fire suppression and afforestation, but insufficient attention has been given to the consequences for biodiversity. To evaluate the biodiversity costs of increasing carbon sequestration, we quantified changes in ecosystem carbon stocks and the associated changes in communities of plants and ants resulting from fire suppression in savannas of the Brazilian Cerrado, a global biodiversity hotspot. ...

  2. The development of savanna afforestation in northern Nigeria

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kadeba, O. (Forestry Research Institute, Ibadan (Nigeria))

    1978-06-01

    The savanna woodland which covers over 80% of the land area of Nigeria is not capable of meeting the requirements of its population for wood and wood products. Since its inception in 1964, the Savanna Forestry Research Project has been concerned mainly with the problems of wood production in this region. The major constraints to tree planting, which include seasonal deficiencies of soil and atmospheric moisture, low levels of soil fertility, selection of suitable exotic tree species and competition in the early stages of tree growth with grasses, have been identified. References are made to some of the major problems that have been solved and those that are being tackled. Some species of exotic trees have proven adaptive to the savanna conditions and are known to be superior to the native savanna trees in terms of growth rates, yields and utility values. The exotic trees which can grown well in the different savanna climatic zones include several species of Eucalyptus and Pinus in addition to teak (Tectona grandis), Gmelina arborea, and neem (Azadirachta indica).

  3. The biodiversity cost of carbon sequestration in tropical savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abreu, Rodolfo C R; Hoffmann, William A; Vasconcelos, Heraldo L; Pilon, Natashi A; Rossatto, Davi R; Durigan, Giselda

    2017-08-01

    Tropical savannas have been increasingly viewed as an opportunity for carbon sequestration through fire suppression and afforestation, but insufficient attention has been given to the consequences for biodiversity. To evaluate the biodiversity costs of increasing carbon sequestration, we quantified changes in ecosystem carbon stocks and the associated changes in communities of plants and ants resulting from fire suppression in savannas of the Brazilian Cerrado, a global biodiversity hotspot. Fire suppression resulted in increased carbon stocks of 1.2 Mg ha -1 year -1 since 1986 but was associated with acute species loss. In sites fully encroached by forest, plant species richness declined by 27%, and ant richness declined by 35%. Richness of savanna specialists, the species most at risk of local extinction due to forest encroachment, declined by 67% for plants and 86% for ants. This loss highlights the important role of fire in maintaining biodiversity in tropical savannas, a role that is not reflected in current policies of fire suppression throughout the Brazilian Cerrado. In tropical grasslands and savannas throughout the tropics, carbon mitigation programs that promote forest cover cannot be assumed to provide net benefits for conservation.

  4. Soil physical conditions in Nigerian savannas and biomass production

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Salako, F.K.

    2004-01-01

    Nigeria is located in the tropical zone, with a vast area having savanna vegetation. This is a region that is itself diverse, necessitating a classification into derived savanna, southern Guinea savanna and northern Guinea savanna. These classifications reflect environmental characteristics such as length of growing period, which for instance is 151-180 days for the northern Guinea savanna, 181-210 days for the southern Guinea savanna and 211-270 days for the derived savanna/coastal savanna. The major soils found in the various agro-ecological zones have coarse-textured surface soil, and are low in organic matter and chemical fertility. Although, yields can be improved by addition of inorganic and organic fertilizer, this can only be sustained and assured with high soil physical qualities. Soil physical qualities can be sustained at a high level with conservation tillage and soil conservation measures. Tillage is physical manipulation of the soil. Thus, the most profound effect of tillage is in relation to soil physical properties. For socio-economic and cultural reasons, manual tillage is still widely practiced in Africa as farming is largely at subsistence level. However, there are now a number of commercial farms especially for cash crop production in many parts of Africa. Many of these are located in locations which were hitherto reserved as forest and a need for sustainable production in pertinent to maintain ecological balance. Soils with coarse texture are not often sensitive to some physical parameters while some physical parameters are more relevant in a given study than others. Sustainable crop production researches in the tropics have focused on the role of planted fallows and their spatial arrangement (e.g., as in alley cropping) for many decades. Application of soil physics in the area of food production and environmental management still lags behind other sub-disciplines of soil science, particularly soil fertility in the tropics. A great challenge is

  5. The Influence of Cattle Wastes on Degraded Savanna Soils of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This paper examines the effects of cattle wastes on degraded savanna soils of Kwara State, Nigeria. A total of 40 soil samples were systematically collected from five quadrats of 12m x 12m. In 4 identified cattle sheds and 1 in adjacent fallow land (control field) on the same soil, climatic type and ecological zone. Standard ...

  6. Modelling annual evapotranspiration in a semi-arid, African savanna ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Accurately measuring evapotranspiration (ET) is essential if we are to derive reasonable estimates of production and water use for semi-arid savannas. Estimates of ET are also important in defining the health of an ecosystem and the quantity of water used by the vegetation when preparing a catchment-scale water balance.

  7. Transformation of a savanna grassland by drought and grazing | O ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The relative effects of drought and heavy grazing on the floristic composition, population size and and structure, and basal cover of an African savanna grassland were differentiated by comparing changes over eight years over eight years, which included a severe drought year, across a gradient of grazing history. Drought ...

  8. Restoring a disappearing ecosystem: the Longleaf Pine Savanna.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Harrington, Timothy B. [USFS; Miller, Karl V. [University of Georgia; Park, Noreen

    2013-05-01

    Longleaf pine (Pinus palustris) savannas of the southeastern United States contain some of the worlds most diverse plant communities, along with a unique complement of wildlife. Their traditionally open canopy structure and rich understory of grasses and herbs were critical to their vigor. However, a long history of land-use practices such as logging, farming, and fire exclusion have reduced this once-widespread ecosystem to only 3 percent of its original range. At six longleaf pine plantations in South Carolina, Tim Harrington with the Pacific Northwest Research Station and collaborators with the Southern Research Station used various treatments (including prescribed burns, tree thinning, and herbicide applications) to alter the forest structure and tracked how successful each one was in advancing savanna restoration over a 14-year period. They found that typical planting densities for wood production in plantations create dense understory shade that excludes many native herbaceous species important to savannas and associated wildlife. The scientists found that although tree thinning alone did not result in sustained gains, a combination of controlled burning, thinning, and herbicide treatments to reduce woody plants was an effective strategy for recovering the savanna ecosystem. The scientists also found that these efforts must be repeated periodically for enduring benefits.

  9. Nitrogen inputs by precipitation in the Nigerian Savanna | Adeniyi ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Inorganic nitrogen input via direct bulk precipitation was measured, and the relation between the different nitrogen species and rainfall characteristics determined over three rainy seasons at Shagunu, a remote, sparsely populated, non-industrialized site in the northern Guinea savanna of Nigeria. Nitrogen concentration per ...

  10. Savanna ecosystem project: phase I summary and phase II progress

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Huntely, BJ

    1978-07-01

    Full Text Available A summary of the results of the first phase (mid 1974 to mid 1976) of the South African Savanna Ecosystem Project being undertaken at Nylsvley in the northern Transvaal is presented. Phase I of this ten year study of the structure and functioning...

  11. Facilitation between bovids and equids on an African savanna

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Odadi, W.O.; Jain, M.; Wieren, van S.E.; Prins, H.H.T.; Rubenstein, D.I.

    2011-01-01

    Background: Equids, especially zebras and donkeys, and cattle (bovids) share habitats in many savanna ecosystems in Africa. The issue of competition for food between these ungulate guilds remains largely unresolved. Resolving it will provide insights into how wild zebra are likely to interact with

  12. Termites of the Savanna ecosystem project study area, Nylsvley

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Ferrar, P

    1982-09-01

    Full Text Available This report describes the termite fauna of the Savanna Ecosystem Project study area at the Nylsvley Nature Reserve, with an illustrated key for identification of species. Twenty-one species of fifteen genera and two families are recorded, and notes...

  13. Erratum: Vascular epiphyte vegetation in rocky savannas of southeastern Brazil

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Alves, R. J. V.; Kolbek, Jiří; Becker, J.

    2009-01-01

    Roč. 27, č. 4 (2009), s. 351-352 ISSN 0107-055X Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : epiphytes * Brazil * rocky savannas Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 0.868, year: 2009

  14. Disentangling how landscape spatial and temporal heterogeneity affects Savanna birds.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bronwyn Price

    Full Text Available In highly seasonal tropical environments, temporal changes in habitat and resources are a significant determinant of the spatial distribution of species. This study disentangles the effects of spatial and mid to long-term temporal heterogeneity in habitat on the diversity and abundance of savanna birds by testing four competing conceptual models of varying complexity. Focussing on sites in northeast Australia over a 20 year time period, we used ground cover and foliage projected cover surfaces derived from a time series of Landsat Thematic Mapper imagery, rainfall data and site-level vegetation surveys to derive measures of habitat structure at local (1-100 ha and landscape (100-1000s ha scales. We used generalised linear models and an information theoretic approach to test the independent effects of spatial and temporal influences on savanna bird diversity and the abundance of eight species with different life-history behaviours. Of four competing models defining influences on assemblages of savanna birds, the most parsimonious included temporal and spatial variability in vegetation cover and site-scale vegetation structure, suggesting savanna bird species respond to spatial and temporal habitat heterogeneity at both the broader landscape scale and at the fine-scale. The relative weight, strength and direction of the explanatory variables changed with each of the eight species, reflecting their different ecology and behavioural traits. This study demonstrates that variations in the spatial pattern of savanna vegetation over periods of 10 to 20 years at the local and landscape scale strongly affect bird diversity and abundance. Thus, it is essential to monitor and manage both spatial and temporal variability in avian habitat to achieve long-term biodiversity outcomes.

  15. Disentangling how landscape spatial and temporal heterogeneity affects Savanna birds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Price, Bronwyn; McAlpine, Clive A; Kutt, Alex S; Ward, Doug; Phinn, Stuart R; Ludwig, John A

    2013-01-01

    In highly seasonal tropical environments, temporal changes in habitat and resources are a significant determinant of the spatial distribution of species. This study disentangles the effects of spatial and mid to long-term temporal heterogeneity in habitat on the diversity and abundance of savanna birds by testing four competing conceptual models of varying complexity. Focussing on sites in northeast Australia over a 20 year time period, we used ground cover and foliage projected cover surfaces derived from a time series of Landsat Thematic Mapper imagery, rainfall data and site-level vegetation surveys to derive measures of habitat structure at local (1-100 ha) and landscape (100-1000s ha) scales. We used generalised linear models and an information theoretic approach to test the independent effects of spatial and temporal influences on savanna bird diversity and the abundance of eight species with different life-history behaviours. Of four competing models defining influences on assemblages of savanna birds, the most parsimonious included temporal and spatial variability in vegetation cover and site-scale vegetation structure, suggesting savanna bird species respond to spatial and temporal habitat heterogeneity at both the broader landscape scale and at the fine-scale. The relative weight, strength and direction of the explanatory variables changed with each of the eight species, reflecting their different ecology and behavioural traits. This study demonstrates that variations in the spatial pattern of savanna vegetation over periods of 10 to 20 years at the local and landscape scale strongly affect bird diversity and abundance. Thus, it is essential to monitor and manage both spatial and temporal variability in avian habitat to achieve long-term biodiversity outcomes.

  16. Disaggregating tree and grass phenology in tropical savannas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Qiang

    Savannas are mixed tree-grass systems and as one of the world's largest biomes represent an important component of the Earth system affecting water and energy balances, carbon sequestration and biodiversity as well as supporting large human populations. Savanna vegetation structure and its distribution, however, may change because of major anthropogenic disturbances from climate change, wildfire, agriculture, and livestock production. The overstory and understory may have different water use strategies, different nutrient requirements and have different responses to fire and climate variation. The accurate measurement of the spatial distribution and structure of the overstory and understory are essential for understanding the savanna ecosystem. This project developed a workflow for separating the dynamics of the overstory and understory fractional cover in savannas at the continental scale (Australia, South America, and Africa). Previous studies have successfully separated the phenology of Australian savanna vegetation into persistent and seasonal greenness using time series decomposition, and into fractions of photosynthetic vegetation (PV), non-photosynthetic vegetation (NPV) and bare soil (BS) using linear unmixing. This study combined these methods to separate the understory and overstory signal in both the green and senescent phenological stages using remotely sensed imagery from the MODIS (MODerate resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) sensor. The methods and parameters were adjusted based on the vegetation variation. The workflow was first tested at the Australian site. Here the PV estimates for overstory and understory showed best performance, however NPV estimates exhibited spatial variation in validation relationships. At the South American site (Cerrado), an additional method based on frequency unmixing was developed to separate green vegetation components with similar phenology. When the decomposition and frequency methods were compared, the frequency

  17. Effects of vegetation burning on the atmospheric chemistry of the Venezuelan savanna

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sanhueza, E.

    1991-01-01

    Biomass burning in tropical savanna and rainforest regions is an important factor in the chemical composition of the atmosphere. On the global scale, burning of savanna grass procedures three to four times greater emission of trace gases than deforestation processes of tropical rainforest. As part of a comprehensive study of the Venezuelan savanna atmosphere, measurements of gases and particles, chemical composition of rain, and biogenic soil emission were made during burning and nonburning periods at several rural savanna sites. A review of the most significant findings is presented in this chapter, and their regional and global implications are discussed

  18. African Savanna-Forest Boundary Dynamics: A 20-Year Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cuni-Sanchez, Aida; White, Lee J. T.; Calders, Kim; Jeffery, Kathryn J.; Abernethy, Katharine; Burt, Andrew; Disney, Mathias; Gilpin, Martin; Gomez-Dans, Jose L.; Lewis, Simon L.

    2016-01-01

    Recent studies show widespread encroachment of forest into savannas with important consequences for the global carbon cycle and land-atmosphere interactions. However, little research has focused on in situ measurements of the successional sequence of savanna to forest in Africa. Using long-term inventory plots we quantify changes in vegetation structure, above-ground biomass (AGB) and biodiversity of trees ≥10 cm diameter over 20 years for five vegetation types: savanna; colonising forest (F1), monodominant Okoume forest (F2); young Marantaceae forest (F3); and mixed Marantaceae forest (F4) in Lopé National Park, central Gabon, plus novel 3D terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) measurements to assess forest structure differences. Over 20 years no plot changed to a new stage in the putative succession, but F1 forests strongly moved towards the structure, AGB and diversity of F2 forests. Overall, savanna plots showed no detectable change in structure, AGB or diversity using this method, with zero trees ≥10 cm diameter in 1993 and 2013. F1 and F2 forests increased in AGB, mainly as a result of adding recruited stems (F1) and increased Basal Area (F2), whereas F3 and F4 forests did not change substantially in structure, AGB or diversity. Critically, the stability of the F3 stage implies that this stage may be maintained for long periods. Soil carbon was low, and did not show a successional gradient as for AGB and diversity. TLS vertical plant profiles showed distinctive differences amongst the vegetation types, indicating that this technique can improve ecological understanding. We highlight two points: (i) as forest colonises, changes in biodiversity are much slower than changes in forest structure or AGB; and (ii) all forest types store substantial quantities of carbon. Multi-decadal monitoring is likely to be required to assess the speed of transition between vegetation types. PMID:27336632

  19. Ecological release in lizard assemblages of neotropical savannas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mesquita, Daniel Oliveira; Colli, Guarino Rinaldi; Vitt, Laurie J

    2007-08-01

    We compare lizard assemblages of Cerrado and Amazonian savannas to test the ecological release hypothesis, which predicts that niche dimensions and abundance should be greater in species inhabiting isolated habitat patches with low species richness (Amazonian savannas and isolated Cerrado patches) when compared with nonisolated areas in central Cerrado with greater species richness. We calculated microhabitat and diet niche breadths with data from 14 isolated Cerrado patches and Amazon savanna areas and six central Cerrado populations. Morphological data were compared using average Euclidean distances, and lizard abundance was estimated using the number of lizards captured in pitfall traps over an extended time period. We found no evidence of ecological release with respect to microhabitat use, suggesting that historical factors are better microhabitat predictors than ecological factors. However, data from individual stomachs indicate that ecological release occurs in these areas for one species (Tropidurus) but not others (Ameiva ameiva, Anolis, Cnemidophorus, and Micrablepharus), suggesting that evolutionary lineages respond differently to environmental pressures, with tropidurids being more affected by ecological factors than polychrotids, teiids, and gymnophthalmids. We found no evidence that ecological release occurs in these areas using morphological data. Based on abundance data, our results indicate that the ecological release (density compensation) hypothesis is not supported: lizard species are not more abundant in isolated areas than in nonisolated areas. The ecology of species is highly conservative, varying little from assemblage to assemblage. Nevertheless, increases in niche breadth for some species indicate that ecological release occurs as well.

  20. Microbial Diversity in Cerrado Biome (Neotropical Savanna Soils.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alinne Pereira de Castro

    Full Text Available The Cerrado, the largest savanna region in South America, is located in central Brazil. Cerrado physiognomies, which range from savanna grasslands to forest formations, combined with the highly weathered, acidic clay Cerrado soils form a unique ecoregion. In this study, high-throughput sequencing of ribosomal RNA genes was combined with shotgun metagenomic analysis to explore the taxonomic composition and potential functions of soil microbial communities in four different vegetation physiognomies during both dry and rainy seasons. Our results showed that changes in bacterial, archaeal, and fungal community structures in cerrado denso, cerrado sensu stricto, campo sujo, and gallery forest soils strongly correlated with seasonal patterns of soil water uptake. The relative abundance of AD3, WPS-2, Planctomycetes, Thermoprotei, and Glomeromycota typically decreased in the rainy season, whereas the relative abundance of Proteobacteria and Ascomycota increased. In addition, analysis of shotgun metagenomic data revealed a significant increase in the relative abundance of genes associated with iron acquisition and metabolism, dormancy, and sporulation during the dry season, and an increase in the relative abundance of genes related to respiration and DNA and protein metabolism during the rainy season. These gene functional categories are associated with adaptation to water stress. Our results further the understanding of how tropical savanna soil microbial communities may be influenced by vegetation covering and temporal variations in soil moisture.

  1. Morphological and functional diversity of primary producers group in savannas

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Medina, E.

    1996-01-01

    The meaning of biological diversity for the operation and stability of natural ecosystems is matter of great theoretical and practical interest. The appearance and permanency of species in a given atmosphere indicates its capacity to compete with other species with similar habit and requirements, and to accumulate the resources that allow its reproduction. On the other hand, the coexistence of similar species in the same ecosystem allows to wonder if ever biological redundancy exists, that is to say, if several species coexist with the same function inside the ecosystem, so that the disappearance of one of them would not have biological significant consequences. A strategy to simplify the analysis of relationships between biodiversity and ecosystems operation is by grouping species with similar function, called functional groups. In this work the the primary producers functional group is analyzed, essentially superiors plants, in a savannas ecosystems. The analysis establishes that the gives the primary producers group is heterogeneous and complex, so much morphological as functionally: 1) the structural complexity and diversity forms of life in an savannas ecosystem are associated with the stratified exploitation of resources over (light) and under the floor (nourishment and water). Changes in diversity that affect the system structure will probably also affect its operations. 2 )Very similar morphological species can differ physiologically up to constitute production units with contrasting nutritional requirements. The echo-physiologic analysis of this differentiation can explain the habitat preferences that are naturally observed. 3) The long-time permanency of rare species, of low frequency, show the inability of dominant species to capture all the available resources. 4) The primary producers and the floor microorganisms have strong interactions. Changes in the community composition can generate significant changes in other community. These biotic interactions

  2. Bistability, Spatial Interaction, and the Distribution of Tropical Forests and Savannas

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Staal, Arie; Dekker, Stefan C.; Xu, Chi; Nes, van Egbert H.

    2016-01-01

    Recent work has indicated that tropical forest and savanna can be alternative stable states under a range of climatic conditions. However, dynamical systems theory suggests that in case of strong spatial interactions between patches of forest and savanna, a boundary between both states is only

  3. Plant composition in oak savanna and woodland restoration at Prairie Fork Conservation Area in Missouri

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nadia E. Navarrete-Tindall; J.W. Van Sambeek; Jamie Coe; Warren Taylor

    2007-01-01

    The wooded areas of the Prairie Fork Conservation Area in central Missouri are typical of the oak/hickory forest/prairie transition zone that will require active management to restore pre-settlement, grass dominated savannas and open woodlands to improve habitat for wildlife. We initiated a management program to restore savannas and woodlands by reducing the midstory (...

  4. Frequent burning promotes invasions of alien plants into a mesic African savanna

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Masocha, M.; Skidmore, A.K.; Poshiwa, X.; Prins, H.H.T.

    2011-01-01

    Fire is both inevitable and necessary for maintaining the structure and functioning of mesic savannas. Without disturbances such as fire and herbivory, tree cover can increase at the expense of grass cover and over time dominate mesic savannas. Consequently, repeated burning is widely used to

  5. Tree invasion in a semi-arid savanna in Zimbabwe : seedling recruitment of Acacia karroo

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Chirara, C. (Chipangura)

    2001-01-01

    In this thesis Chirara reports on his study on the competitive interaction between savanna grasses and young tree seedlings of Acacia karroo, from hereon indicated as ' Acacia seedlings' . Acacia is one of the tree species that dominates savanna grassland in situations of overgrazing (bush

  6. Pattern of invasion by Adhatoda vasica in savannas of Sariska Tiger Reserve, Rajasthan, Western India

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bhatt, Priyanka; Rawat, G.S.; Sankar, K.; Tomlinson, K.W.; Langevelde, van F.

    2015-01-01

    As part of global experiments on Savanna vegetation, we examined the ecological characteristics of an important
    semiarid savanna in the Indian sub-continent i.e Sariska Tiger Reserve, Rajasthan, Western India during April 2009 to
    May 2011. 149 plots across five line transects were sampled

  7. Heaths and forests of the western hills of Chia, Bogota savanna, Colombia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cortes S, Sandra P.; Van der Hammen, Thomas; Rangel Ch, J Orlando

    2000-01-01

    The authors make a study of the heaths and forests of the western hills of the population of Chia, located in the savanna of Bogota and the presence or absences of these in the same Bogota savanna; the authors treat topics like their physiognomy and composition, distribution and ecology among other topics

  8. Impacts of Human Activities on Tree Species Composition Along the Forest Savanna Boundary in Nigeria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christiana Ndidi Egbinola

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available The study investigated the tree species composition along the forest-savanna boundary in Oyo state of Nigeria with the aim of assessing the impact of human activities on the floristic composition. A transect was placed along the study area and species data was collected from quadrats placed in study plots within different study sites. Detrended Correspondence Analysis (DCA was used to determine vegetation assemblages, while both correlation and the analysis of variance (ANOVA were used to show the relationship between species in the different study sites. Results of the DCA revealed three species assemblages, an area with only forest species, another with only savanna species and a third with both forest/savanna species. ANOVA results further revealed that within the forest and savanna assemblages, species in mature and successional sites were alike. The study therefore revealed that human activities’ within the region is leading to the establishment of savanna species and an elimination of forest species.

  9. Horizontal and vertical variability of soil moisture in savanna ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caylor, K.; D'Odorico, P.; Rodriguez-Iturbe, I.

    2004-12-01

    Soil moisture is a key hydrological variable that mediates the interactions between climate, soil, and vegetation dynamics in water-limited ecosystems. Because of the importance of water limitation in savannas, a number of theoretical models of tree-grass coexistence have been developed which differ in their underlying assumptions about the ways in which trees and grasses access and use soil moisture. However, clarification of the mechanisms that allow savanna vegetation to persist as a mixture of grasses and trees remains a vexing problem in both hydrological and vegetation science. A particular challenge is the fact that the spatial pattern of vegetation is both a cause and effect of variation in water availability in semiarid ecosystems. At landscape to regional scales, climatic and geologic constraints on soil moisture availability are primary determinants of vegetation structural pattern. However, at local to landscape scales the patchy vegetation structural mosaic serves to redistribute the availability of soil moisture in ways that have important consequences for structural dynamics and community composition. In this regard, the emerging field of ecohydrology is well suited to investigate questions concerning couplings between the patchy structural mosaic of savanna vegetation and the kinds self-organizing dynamics known to exist in other light and nutrient-limited vegetation systems. Here we address the role of patchy vegetation structure through the use of a lumped model of soil moisture dynamics that accounts for the effect of tree canopy on the lateral and vertical distribution of soil moisture. The model includes mechanisms for the drying of the ground surface due to soil evaporation in the sites with no tree cover, and for the lateral water uptake due to root invading areas with no canopy cover located in the proximity of trees. The model, when applied to a series of sites along a rainfall gradient in southern Africa, is able to explain the cover

  10. Patterns in woody vegetation structure across African savannas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Axelsson, Christoffer R.; Hanan, Niall P.

    2017-07-01

    Vegetation structure in water-limited systems is to a large degree controlled by ecohydrological processes, including mean annual precipitation (MAP) modulated by the characteristics of precipitation and geomorphology that collectively determine how rainfall is distributed vertically into soils or horizontally in the landscape. We anticipate that woody canopy cover, crown density, crown size, and the level of spatial aggregation among woody plants in the landscape will vary across environmental gradients. A high level of woody plant aggregation is most distinct in periodic vegetation patterns (PVPs), which emerge as a result of ecohydrological processes such as runoff generation and increased infiltration close to plants. Similar, albeit weaker, forces may influence the spatial distribution of woody plants elsewhere in savannas. Exploring these trends can extend our knowledge of how semi-arid vegetation structure is constrained by rainfall regime, soil type, topography, and disturbance processes such as fire. Using high-spatial-resolution imagery, a flexible classification framework, and a crown delineation method, we extracted woody vegetation properties from 876 sites spread over African savannas. At each site, we estimated woody cover, mean crown size, crown density, and the degree of aggregation among woody plants. This enabled us to elucidate the effects of rainfall regimes (MAP and seasonality), soil texture, slope, and fire frequency on woody vegetation properties. We found that previously documented increases in woody cover with rainfall is more consistently a result of increasing crown size than increasing density of woody plants. Along a gradient of mean annual precipitation from the driest (< 200 mm yr-1) to the wettest (1200-1400 mm yr-1) end, mean estimates of crown size, crown density, and woody cover increased by 233, 73, and 491 % respectively. We also found a unimodal relationship between mean crown size and sand content suggesting that maximal

  11. Patterns in woody vegetation structure across African savannas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. R. Axelsson

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Vegetation structure in water-limited systems is to a large degree controlled by ecohydrological processes, including mean annual precipitation (MAP modulated by the characteristics of precipitation and geomorphology that collectively determine how rainfall is distributed vertically into soils or horizontally in the landscape. We anticipate that woody canopy cover, crown density, crown size, and the level of spatial aggregation among woody plants in the landscape will vary across environmental gradients. A high level of woody plant aggregation is most distinct in periodic vegetation patterns (PVPs, which emerge as a result of ecohydrological processes such as runoff generation and increased infiltration close to plants. Similar, albeit weaker, forces may influence the spatial distribution of woody plants elsewhere in savannas. Exploring these trends can extend our knowledge of how semi-arid vegetation structure is constrained by rainfall regime, soil type, topography, and disturbance processes such as fire. Using high-spatial-resolution imagery, a flexible classification framework, and a crown delineation method, we extracted woody vegetation properties from 876 sites spread over African savannas. At each site, we estimated woody cover, mean crown size, crown density, and the degree of aggregation among woody plants. This enabled us to elucidate the effects of rainfall regimes (MAP and seasonality, soil texture, slope, and fire frequency on woody vegetation properties. We found that previously documented increases in woody cover with rainfall is more consistently a result of increasing crown size than increasing density of woody plants. Along a gradient of mean annual precipitation from the driest (< 200 mm yr−1 to the wettest (1200–1400 mm yr−1 end, mean estimates of crown size, crown density, and woody cover increased by 233, 73, and 491 % respectively. We also found a unimodal relationship between mean crown size and sand

  12. Taxonomy Icon Data: African savanna elephant [Taxonomy Icon

    Lifescience Database Archive (English)

    Full Text Available African savanna elephant Loxodonta africana Chordata/Vertebrata/Mammalia/Theria/Eutheria/etc. Loxodonta_afri...cana_L.png Loxodonta_africana_NL.png Loxodonta_africana_S.png Loxodonta_africana_NS....png http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Loxodonta+africana&t=L http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonom...y_icon/icon.cgi?i=Loxodonta+africana&t=NL http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Loxodonta+afric...ana&t=S http://biosciencedbc.jp/taxonomy_icon/icon.cgi?i=Loxodonta+africana&t=NS ...

  13. MARKET OF NON-WOOD FOREST PRODUCTS FROM BRAZILIAN SAVANNA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandra Regina Afonso

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available In this article, we analyze the main non-wood forest products from Brazilian savanna. We studied the behavior and the growth rates of production and prices of almond of babaçu, oil of copaiba, fiber of buriti, leaf of jaborandi, bark of barbatimão, bark of angico, fruit of mangaba, almonds of pequi, from 1982 to 2005. All the products exhibited decreasing production, with exception of the oil of copaiba and almonds of pequi, which showed positive growth rates: 12.9% and 8.5%, respectively. The analysis of prices for most products was not significant, except for barks of barbatimão and angico, and almonds of pequi, which showed positive trends: 10.9%, 6.7%, and 4.6%, respectively. We believe that results were not significant due to the severe variations of the Brazilian currency in the period. We conclude that pequi is the main product from savanna and that oil of copaiba has the biggest increase in the production because most of the production comes from the whole Brazilian Amazon region.

  14. Seasonal variation of ground spiders in a Brazilian Savanna

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marina Farcic Mineo

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available The Brazilian Savanna Ecoregion (Cerrado is one of the richest biomes in the world, with a characteristic highly seasonal climate a dry season between May and September and a rainy season from October through April. Ground-dwelling spiders from three Cerrado phytophysiognomies, "campo cerrado", "cerrado" and "cerrad��o", were sampled using pitfall traps during two years, totaling 111 species and 3,529 individuals. The abundance of individuals and species richness was higher during the wet season. Fifty-eight species were captured exclusively during that period, whereas only nineteen were restricted to the dry season. Only two species were found in all samples. The number of juveniles was higher than the number of adults in all phytophysiognomies and in all species during both seasons. The highest abundance was registered in October and the lowest in April. Overall sex ratio was male-biased in all vegetation types sampled. Distinct climate variables affected the abundance of spiders depending on sex, age and vegetal physiognomy where they were sampled. This study involved the longest sampling of spider abundance and diversity on the ground of a Brazilian Savanna.

  15. Environmental determinants of tropical forest and savanna distribution: A quantitative model evaluation and its implication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeng, Zhenzhong; Chen, Anping; Piao, Shilong; Rabin, Sam; Shen, Zehao

    2014-07-01

    The distributions of tropical ecosystems are rapidly being altered by climate change and anthropogenic activities. One possible trend—the loss of tropical forests and replacement by savannas—could result in significant shifts in ecosystem services and biodiversity loss. However, the influence and the relative importance of environmental factors in regulating the distribution of tropical forest and savanna biomes are still poorly understood, which makes it difficult to predict future tropical forest and savanna distributions in the context of climate change. Here we use boosted regression trees to quantitatively evaluate the importance of environmental predictors—mainly climatic, edaphic, and fire factors—for the tropical forest-savanna distribution at a mesoscale across the tropics (between 15°N and 35°S). Our results demonstrate that climate alone can explain most of the distribution of tropical forest and savanna at the scale considered; dry season average precipitation is the single most important determinant across tropical Asia-Australia, Africa, and South America. Given the strong tendency of increased seasonality and decreased dry season precipitation predicted by global climate models, we estimate that about 28% of what is now tropical forest would likely be lost to savanna by the late 21st century under the future scenario considered. This study highlights the importance of climate seasonality and interannual variability in predicting the distribution of tropical forest and savanna, supporting the climate as the primary driver in the savanna biogeography.

  16. Using Paleoecology to Inform Land Management as Climates Change: An Example from an Oak Savanna Ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spencer, Jessica D.; Brunelle, Andrea; Hepola, Tim

    2017-12-01

    Oak savanna, a transitional ecosystem between open prairie and dense oak forest, was once widespread in Minnesota. Upon European settlement much of the oak savanna was destroyed. Recently, efforts to restore this ecosystem have increased and often include the reintroduction of fire. Though fire is known to serve an important role within oak savannas, there are currently few studies which address fire regimes on timescales longer than the last century. This research presents a paleoecological history of Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge (SNWR) in MN, USA, spanning the last 8000 years. The objectives of this study were to use charcoal, pollen, and magnetic susceptibility of lake sediments collected from Johnson Slough (JS) within the refuge to evaluate the natural range of variability and disturbance history of the oak savanna within the refuge, assess the success of current restoration strategies, and add to the regional paleoecological history. The mid/late Holocene period of the JS record shows a period of high fire activity from ca. 6500 to 2600 cal year BP, with a shift from prairie to oak savanna occurring over this same period. A (possibly agricultural) disturbance to JS sediments affected the period from ca. 2600 cal year BP to 1963 AD, which includes the time of Euro-American settlement. However, the destruction and subsequent restoration of the oak savanna is evident in a pollen ratio of Quercus:Poaceae, indicating that current restoration efforts have been successful at restoring the oak savanna to within the natural range of variability seen just prior to destruction.

  17. Increased tree densities in South African savannas: >50 years of data suggests CO2 as driver

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Buitenwerf, R

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available EC et al. (2007) Effects of four decades of fire manipulation on woody vegetation structure in savanna. Ecology, 88, 1119-1125. Hoffman MT, O'Connor TG (1999) Vegetation change over 40 years in the Weenen/Muden area, KwaZulu-Natal: evidence from... response of savanna woody plant species following harvesting: the value of persistence. Forest Ecology and Management, 232, 114-123. O'Connor TG (1985) A synthesis of field experiments concerning the grass layer in the savanna regions of southern...

  18. Inferences of Present and Past Changes at Isolated Enclaves and Matrix of Savannas by Carbon Isotopes in a Transitional Forest-Savanna Area in Northern Amazonia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Couto-Santos, F. R.; Luizao, F. J.; Camargo, P. B.

    2013-12-01

    The evolutionary history of savannas influenced by short term climate cycles, during the Quaternary Period, could prompt variations in forest cover often related to movements of the forest-savanna boundary. In this study we investigated current and past changes in the structure of vegetation and the origins of savannas of different natures in a biogeographically and climatic transitional forest-savanna area in northern Amazonia. Variations in the isotopic composition of soil organic matter (δ13C) from surface soils (0-10 cm) along forest-savanna boundaries, detected by a sigmoidal non-linear function, were used to identify current changes in vegetation, while past changes were inferred by discontinuities in the evolution of δ13C with soil depth using piecewise regression associated with radiocarbon dating (14C). By comparing small isolated savanna enclaves inside a strictly protected nature reserve (ESEC Maracá) with its outskirts unprotected continuous savanna matrix, we found that origins and the patterns of dynamics were distinct between these areas and did not respond in the same way to climate change and fire events, either in the last decades or during the Holocene. The stability of the present boundaries of the surrounding savanna matrix reflects the resilience of the transitional forests under a recent intensified fire regime and favorable climate, while the deep forest soil isotopic signal indicated a forest shrinkage of at least 70 m occurring since its origin in early Holocene until 780 years BP associated with a climate drier than the current one. Contrarily, the protected enclaves inside ESEC Maracá, remained stable since the middle Holocene, suggesting a non-anthropogenic origin related to soil edaphic conditions, but with recent dynamics of advancing forest by 8 m century-1 favored by current climate and lacking fire events. A detailed understanding of the origins of savannas of distinct natures and the way they are affected by climate and fire

  19. Management of Herbaceous Seeps and Wet Savannas for Threatened and Endangered Species

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Harper, Mary

    1998-01-01

    Wetland communities such as herbaceous seeps and wet savannas occur on military installations throughout the southeastern United States, usually as pockets of wet habitat within a matrix of drier longleaf pine woodlands...

  20. Hyper-temporal c-band SAR for baseline woody structural assessments in deciduous savannas

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Mathieu, Renaud SA

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available deciduous savanna environment. Results showed that: the temporal filter reduced image variance; the random forest model out-performed the linear model; while the TCV metric consistently showed marginally higher accuracies than the TCC metric. Combinations...

  1. Nylsvley - South African Savanna ecosystem project: objectives, organisation and research programme

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Huntley, BJ

    1978-03-01

    Full Text Available A description of the objectives, organization and research programme of the Savanna Ecosystem Project being undertaken at Nylsvley in the northern Transvaal is presented. The project is a cooperative multi-disciplinary study of the structure...

  2. Mapping big tree presence in open savanna, using tree shadow and high resolution multispectral imagery

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Mathieu, Renaud SA

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Large scattered trees play an important role in the functioning of savanna landscapes. They act as focal points for various organism activities, which influence the distribution of nutrients and water within the landscape, which in turn influences...

  3. Global extent and determinants of savanna and forest as alternative biome states

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Staver, C

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Theoretically, fire–tree cover feedbacks can maintain savanna and forest as alternative stable states. However, the global extent of fire- driven discontinuities in tree cover is unknown, especially accounting for seasonality and soils. The authors...

  4. Impact of savanna conversion to oil palm plantations on C stocks dynamics and soil fertility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quezada, Juan Carlos; Guillaume, Thomas; Buttler, Alexandre; Ruegg, Johanna

    2017-04-01

    Large-scale expansion of oil palm cultivation on forested land in South-East Asia during the last decades lead to high negative environmental impacts. Because rainforests store high amount of C, their conversion to oil palm plantations results in large net CO2 emissions. Oil palm cultivation in tropical ecosystems such as savanna that store less C than forests is seen as an alternative to reduce greenhouse gas emissions of future oil palm development. While this option is more and more frequently mentioned, few data are available on the effective gain in C storage. Furthermore negative impact on soil organic carbon and soil fertility could offset gains of C storage in oil palm biomass. Here, we present results on aboveground and belowground C stocks and soil nutrient dynamics over a full rotation cycle of oil palm plantations established on tropical savanna grasslands. Three natural savanna grasslands as reference sites and 9 oil palm plantations ranging from two to twenty-seven years old were selected in the Llanos in Colombia. Oxisols were sampled down to 70 cm in each management zones of oil palm plantations (weeded circle, interrow, frond piles and harvesting path). Taking advantages of a shift from C4 to C3 vegetation, we quantified savanna-derived soil organic carbon (SOC) decomposition and oil palm-derived SOC stabilization rates and how they were affected by management practices (mineral fertilization, organic amendments, etc.). Results show that, in opposite to forest conversion, C storage increases when savannas are converted to oil palm plantations. Because soil C storage was very low in natural conditions, SOC changes had little effects on overall C storage. Substitution of savanna-derived SOC by oil palm-derived SOC was very fast in the topsoil and highest under frond pile and weeded circle where C and nutrients inputs are highest. However, stabilization of oil palm-derived SOC compensated loss of savanna-derived SOC rather than increased SOC stocks

  5. Impacts of landuse and climate change on the dynamics and biodiversity in the Thornbush Savanna Biome

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Jeltsch, F

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available pressure on dryland ecosystem services takes place in regions of intermediate aridity and not, as might be expected, in dry subhumid ar- eas where population density is highest, or in hyperarid areas, where population is lowest. The high... of households (Ericson & Watson 2009). They can function as a model-region for a broad range of dry- lands, especially non-humid savannas, worldwide?in particular as projected climatic changes for most subhumid and semiarid savanna regions indicate major...

  6. Human impacts in African savannas are mediated by plant functional traits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osborne, Colin P; Charles-Dominique, Tristan; Stevens, Nicola; Bond, William J; Midgley, Guy; Lehmann, Caroline E R

    2018-05-28

    Tropical savannas have a ground cover dominated by C 4 grasses, with fire and herbivory constraining woody cover below a rainfall-based potential. The savanna biome covers 50% of the African continent, encompassing diverse ecosystems that include densely wooded Miombo woodlands and Serengeti grasslands with scattered trees. African savannas provide water, grazing and browsing, food and fuel for tens of millions of people, and have a unique biodiversity that supports wildlife tourism. However, human impacts are causing widespread and accelerating degradation of savannas. The primary threats are land cover-change and transformation, landscape fragmentation that disrupts herbivore communities and fire regimes, climate change and rising atmospheric CO 2 . The interactions among these threats are poorly understood, with unknown consequences for ecosystem health and human livelihoods. We argue that the unique combinations of plant functional traits characterizing the major floristic assemblages of African savannas make them differentially susceptible and resilient to anthropogenic drivers of ecosystem change. Research must address how this functional diversity among African savannas differentially influences their vulnerability to global change and elucidate the mechanisms responsible. This knowledge will permit appropriate management strategies to be developed to maintain ecosystem integrity, biodiversity and livelihoods. © 2018 The Authors New Phytologist © 2018 New Phytologist Trust.

  7. The individual and interactive effects of tree-tree establishment competition and fire on savanna structure and dynamics

    OpenAIRE

    Calabrese, Justin; Vázquez, Federico; López, Cristóbal; San Miguel, Maxi; Grimm, Volker

    2010-01-01

    The mechanisms regulating savanna tree populations are still not well understood. Recent empirical work suggests that both tree-tree competition and fire are key factors in semi-arid to mesic savannas. However, the potential for competition to structure savannas, particularly in interaction with fire, has received little theoretical attention. We develop a minimalistic and analytically tractable stochastic cellular automaton to study the individual and combined effects of competition and fire...

  8. Leaf green-up in a semi-arid African savanna - separating tree and grass responses to environmental cues

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Archibald, S

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available -arid African savanna - 583 Journal of Vegetation Science 18: 583-594, 2007 © IAVS; Opulus Press Uppsala. Leaf green-up in a semi-arid African savanna – separating tree and grass responses to environmental cues Archibald, S.1* & Scholes, R.J.1,2 1Natural... to identify tree and grass green-up dates in a semi-arid savanna system, and are there predictable environmental cues for green-up for each life form? Location: Acacia nigrescens/Combretum apiculatum savanna, Kruger National Park, South Africa (25° S, 31...

  9. Nutrient and Light Limitations on Grass Productivity in a Southern African Savanna

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ries, L. P.; Shugart, H. H.; Caylor, K. K.; Okin, G. S.; Kgope, B.

    2006-12-01

    Despite the ubiquity of sub-tropical savannas throughout the earth, limitations of savanna productivity are understudied relative to other terrestrial systems. In particular, there has been little attention on the role of phosphorus (P) in savanna productivity and structure. This study examined the role of increased nitrogen (N) and P in grass productivity in a woodland savanna in Botswana. We added aqueous forms of N and P individually and together to selected grasses. During the following growing season we measured foliar nutrient concentrations, aboveground biomass productivity and photosynthetic response at various levels of incident photosynthetically active radiation to estimate the productivity response. As expected, we observed an increase in foliar P concentrations in P and N+P treatments. However, there was no increase in foliar N for any treatments. We also observed a significant increase in net carbon assimilation and Amax for all treatments relative to the control grasses. Despite a higher rate of leaf level carbon assimilation in the N treatment, the aboveground biomass production was smaller than that of the N+P treatment. These results suggest that the aboveground productivity of these woodland savanna grasses is limited by both N and P. Additionally, under constant CO2 availability, photosynthesis appears to be limited by nutrients for light levels greater than 500 μmol m-2s-1. This research will help broaden our understanding of the biogeochemical processes that govern savanna productivity. Ultimately, these data can be used to model canopy productivity and ecological succession of savannas under scenarios in which bush encroachment and desertification may alter light and nutrients availability.

  10. Changes in Carbon Emissions in Colombian Savannas Derived From Recent Land use and Land Cover Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Etter, A.; Sarmiento, A.

    2007-12-01

    The global contribution of carbon emissions from land use dynamics and change to the global carbon (C) cycle is still uncertain, a major concern in global change modeling. Carbon emission from fires in the tropics is significant and represents 9% of the net primary production, and 50% of worldwide C emissions from fires are attributable to savanna fires. Such emissions may vary significantly due to differences in ecosystem types. Most savanna areas are devoted to grazing land uses making methane emissions also important in savanna ecosystems. Land use change driven by intensification of grazing and cropping has become a major factor affecting C emission dynamics from savanna regions. Colombia has some 17 MHa of mesic savannas which have been historically burned. Due to changes in market demands and improved accessibility during the last 20 years, important areas of savannas changed land use from predominantly extensive grazing to crops and intensive grazing systems. This research models and evaluates the impacts of such land use changes on the spatial and temporal burning patterns and C emissions in the Orinoco savannas of Colombia. We address the effects of land use change patterns using remote sensing data from MODIS and Landsat, ecosystem mapping products, and spatial GIS analysis. First we map the expansion of the agricultural frontier from the 1980s-2000s. We then model the changes in land use from the 1980s using a statistical modeling approach to analyze and quantify the impact of accessibility, ecosystem type and land tenure. We calculate the effects on C emissions from fire regimes and other sources of C based on patterns and extent of burned areas in the 2000s for different savanna ecosystem types and land uses. In the Llanos the fire regime exhibits a marked seasonal variability with most fire events occurring during the dry season between December-March. Our analysis shows that fire frequencies vary consistently between 0.6 and 2.8 fires.yr-1 per 2

  11. Western equatorial African forest-savanna mosaics: a legacy of late Holocene climatic change?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Ngomanda

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available Past vegetation and climate changes reconstructed using two pollen records from Lakes Maridor and Nguène, located in the coastal savannas and inland rainforest of Gabon, respectively, provide new insights into the environmental history of western equatorial African rainforests during the last 4500 cal yr BP. These pollen records indicate that the coastal savannas of western equatorial Africa did not exist during the mid-Holocene and instead the region was covered by evergreen rainforests. From ca. 4000 cal yr BP a progressive decline of inland evergreen rainforest, accompanied by the expansion of semi-deciduous rainforest, occurred synchronously with grassland colonisation in the coastal region of Gabon. The contraction of moist evergreen rainforest and the establishment of coastal savannas in Gabon suggest decreasing humidity from ca. 4000 cal yr BP. The marked reduction in evergreen rainforest and subsequent savanna expansion was followed from 2700 cal yr BP by the colonization of secondary forests dominated by the palm, Elaeis guineensis, and the shrub, Alchornea cordifolia (Euphorbiaceae. A return to wetter climatic conditions from about 1400 cal yr BP led to the renewed spread of evergreen rainforest inland, whereas a forest-savanna mosaic still persists in the coastal region. There is no evidence to suggest that the major environmental changes observed were driven by human impact.

  12. Leaf anatomical traits of non-arboreal savanna species along a gradient of tree encroachment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luiz Felipe Souza Pinheiro

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT In the Brazilian savanna (Cerrado of Brazil, fire suppression has transformed typical savanna formations (TS into forested savanna (FS due to the phenomenon of encroachment. Under encroachment, non-arboreal plants begin to receive less light due to greater tree density and canopy closure. Here we aim to evaluate if leaf anatomical traits of non-arboreal species differ according to the degree of tree encroachment at the Assis Ecological Station - São Paulo, Brazil. To this end, we evaluated leaf tissue thickness and specific leaf area (SLA in representative non-arboreal species occurring along a gradient of tree encroachment. Leaves of TS species showed a trend towards xeromorphism, with traits reported to facilitate survival under high luminosity, such as thick leaves, thick epidermis and mesophyll, and low SLA. In contrast, FS species exhibited mesomorphic leaves, with thin mesophyll and high SLA, which are able to capture diffuse light in denser environments. Thus, non-arboreal understory species with mesomorphic leaf traits should be favored in environments with denser vegetation in contrast to typical savanna species. The results suggest that typical non-arboreal savanna species would not survive under tree encroachment due to the low competitiveness of their leaf anatomical strategies in shady environments.

  13. Implications of the spatial dynamics of fire spread for the bistability of savanna and forest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schertzer, E; Staver, A C; Levin, S A

    2015-01-01

    The role of fire in expanding the global distribution of savanna is well recognized. Empirical observations and modeling suggest that fire spread has a threshold response to fuel-layer continuity, which sets up a positive feedback that maintains savanna-forest bistability. However, modeling has so far failed to examine fire spread as a spatial process that interacts with vegetation. Here, we use simple, well-supported assumptions about fire spread as an infection process and its effects on trees to ask whether spatial dynamics qualitatively change the potential for savanna-forest bistability. We show that the spatial effects of fire spread are the fundamental reason that bistability is possible: because fire spread is an infection process, it exhibits a threshold response to fuel continuity followed by a rapid increase in fire size. Other ecological processes affecting fire spread may also contribute including temporal variability in demography or fire spread. Finally, including the potential for spatial aggregation increases the potential both for savanna-forest bistability and for savanna and forest to coexist in a landscape mosaic.

  14. IDESSA: An Integrative Decision Support System for Sustainable Rangeland Management in Southern African Savannas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer, Hanna; Authmann, Christian; Dreber, Niels; Hess, Bastian; Kellner, Klaus; Morgenthal, Theunis; Nauss, Thomas; Seeger, Bernhard; Tsvuura, Zivanai; Wiegand, Kerstin

    2017-04-01

    Bush encroachment is a syndrome of land degradation that occurs in many savannas including those of southern Africa. The increase in density, cover or biomass of woody vegetation often has negative effects on a range of ecosystem functions and services, which are hardly reversible. However, despite its importance, neither the causes of bush encroachment, nor the consequences of different resource management strategies to combat or mitigate related shifts in savanna states are fully understood. The project "IDESSA" (An Integrative Decision Support System for Sustainable Rangeland Management in Southern African Savannas) aims to improve the understanding of the complex interplays between land use, climate patterns and vegetation dynamics and to implement an integrative monitoring and decision-support system for the sustainable management of different savanna types. For this purpose, IDESSA follows an innovative approach that integrates local knowledge, botanical surveys, remote-sensing and machine-learning based time-series of atmospheric and land-cover dynamics, spatially explicit simulation modeling and analytical database management. The integration of the heterogeneous data will be implemented in a user oriented database infrastructure and scientific workflow system. Accessible via web-based interfaces, this database and analysis system will allow scientists to manage and analyze monitoring data and scenario computations, as well as allow stakeholders (e. g. land users, policy makers) to retrieve current ecosystem information and seasonal outlooks. We present the concept of the project and show preliminary results of the realization steps towards the integrative savanna management and decision-support system.

  15. Spatial pattern enhances ecosystem functioning in an African savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pringle, Robert M; Doak, Daniel F; Brody, Alison K; Jocqué, Rudy; Palmer, Todd M

    2010-05-25

    The finding that regular spatial patterns can emerge in nature from local interactions between organisms has prompted a search for the ecological importance of these patterns. Theoretical models have predicted that patterning may have positive emergent effects on fundamental ecosystem functions, such as productivity. We provide empirical support for this prediction. In dryland ecosystems, termite mounds are often hotspots of plant growth (primary productivity). Using detailed observations and manipulative experiments in an African savanna, we show that these mounds are also local hotspots of animal abundance (secondary and tertiary productivity): insect abundance and biomass decreased with distance from the nearest termite mound, as did the abundance, biomass, and reproductive output of insect-eating predators. Null-model analyses indicated that at the landscape scale, the evenly spaced distribution of termite mounds produced dramatically greater abundance, biomass, and reproductive output of consumers across trophic levels than would be obtained in landscapes with randomly distributed mounds. These emergent properties of spatial pattern arose because the average distance from an arbitrarily chosen point to the nearest feature in a landscape is minimized in landscapes where the features are hyper-dispersed (i.e., uniformly spaced). This suggests that the linkage between patterning and ecosystem functioning will be common to systems spanning the range of human management intensities. The centrality of spatial pattern to system-wide biomass accumulation underscores the need to conserve pattern-generating organisms and mechanisms, and to incorporate landscape patterning in efforts to restore degraded habitats and maximize the delivery of ecosystem services.

  16. Surviving and growing amidst others : the effect of environmental factors on germination and establishment of savanna trees

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Moribe Barbosa, E.R.

    2013-01-01

    Savanna ecosystems are characterized by a continuous grass layer intermixed with a discontinuous layer of trees and shrubs. A complex set of environmental drivers, such as water, soil nutrients, solar radiance, fire and herbivory, determines vegetation structure and composition in savannas.Such

  17. Microbial properties and litter and soil nutrients after two prescribed fires in developing savannas in an upland Missouri Ozark Forest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Felix, Jr. Ponder; Mahasin Tadros; Edward F. Loewenstein

    2009-01-01

    On some landscapes periodic fire may be necessary to develop and maintain oak-dominated savannas. We studied the effects of two annual prescribed burns to determine their effect on microbial activity and soil and litter nutrients 1 year after the last burn. Surface litter and soil from the upper 0?5 cm soil layer in three developing savannas (oak-hickory, ...

  18. Overlap in nitrogen sources and redistribution of nitrogen between trees and grasses in a semi-arid savanna

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Priyadarshini, K.V.R.; Prins, H.H.T.; Bie, de S.; Heitkonig, I.M.A.; Woodborne, S.; Gort, G.; Kirkman, K.; Fry, B.; Kroon, de H.

    2014-01-01

    A key question in savanna ecology is how trees and grasses coexist under N limitation. We used N stable isotopes and N content to study N source partitioning across seasons from trees and associated grasses in a semi-arid savanna. We also used 15N tracer additions to investigate possible

  19. Bird species and numbers of birds in oak savannas of the Southwestern Borderlands region including effects of burning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peter F. Ffolliott; Hui Chen; Gerald J. Gottfried

    2011-01-01

    Oak savannas of the Southwestern Borderlands region provide food, cover, and sites for nesting, roosting, and perching for a diversity of bird species. The results of a five-year (2003-2007) study of bird species, numbers of birds, and their diversities in the naturally occurring (unburned) oak savannas of the region are reported in this paper. Effects of cool-season...

  20. Eastern wood-pewee (Contopus virens) breeding demography across a gradient of savanna, woodland, and forest in the Missouri Ozarks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarah W. Kendrick; Frank R. Thompson; Jennifer L. Reidy

    2013-01-01

    Better knowledge of bird response to savanna and woodland restoration is needed to inform management of these communities. We related temporal and habitat variables to breeding demography and densities of the Eastern Wood-Pewee (Contopus virens) across a gradient of savanna, woodland, and forest. We determined nest success, clutch size, young fledged...

  1. A probabilistic analysis of fire-induced tree-grass coexistence in savannas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Odorico, Paolo; Laio, Francesco; Ridolfi, Luca

    2006-03-01

    Fires play an important role in determining the composition and structure of vegetation in semiarid ecosystems. The study of the interactions between fire and vegetation requires a stochastic approach because of the random and unpredictable nature of fire occurrences. To this end, this article develops a minimalist probabilistic framework to investigate the impact of intermittent fire occurrences on the temporal dynamics of vegetation. This framework is used to analyze the emergence of statistically stable conditions favorable to tree-grass coexistence in savannas. It is found that these conditions can be induced and stabilized by the stochastic fire regime. A decrease in fire frequency leads to bush encroachment, while more frequent and intense fires favor savanna-to-grassland conversions. The positive feedback between fires and vegetation can convert states of tree-grass coexistence in semiarid savannas into bistable conditions, with both woodland and grassland as possible, though mutually exclusive, stable states of the system.

  2. The global extent and determinants of savanna and forest as alternative biome states.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Staver, A Carla; Archibald, Sally; Levin, Simon A

    2011-10-14

    Theoretically, fire-tree cover feedbacks can maintain savanna and forest as alternative stable states. However, the global extent of fire-driven discontinuities in tree cover is unknown, especially accounting for seasonality and soils. We use tree cover, climate, fire, and soils data sets to show that tree cover is globally discontinuous. Climate influences tree cover globally but, at intermediate rainfall (1000 to 2500 millimeters) with mild seasonality (less than 7 months), tree cover is bimodal, and only fire differentiates between savanna and forest. These may be alternative states over large areas, including parts of Amazonia and the Congo. Changes in biome distributions, whether at the cost of savanna (due to fragmentation) or forest (due to climate), will be neither smooth nor easily reversible.

  3. Biodiversity, threats and conservation challenges in the Cerrado of Amapá, an Amazonian savanna

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karen Mustin

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available An Amazonian savanna in northern Brazil known as the Cerrado of Amapá is under imminent threat from poor land-use planning, the expansion of large-scale agriculture and other anthropogenic pressures. These savannas house a rich and unique flora and fauna, including endemic plants and animals. However, the area remains under-sampled for most taxa, and better sampling may uncover new species. We estimate that only ~9.16% of these habitats have any kind of protection, and legislative changes threaten to further weaken or remove this protection. Here we present the status of knowledge concerning the biodiversity of the Cerrado of Amapá, its conservation status, and the main threats to the conservation of this Amazonian savanna. To secure the future of these unique and imperilled habitats, we suggest urgent expansion of protected areas, as well as measures that would promote less-damaging land uses to support the local population.

  4. Fuel biomass and combustion factors associated with fires in savanna ecosystems of South Africa and Zambia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shea, Ronald W.; Shea, Barbara W.; Kauffman, J. Boone; Ward, Darold E.; Haskins, Craig I.; Scholes, Mary C.

    1996-10-01

    Fires are dominant factors in shaping the structure and composition of vegetation in African savanna ecosystems. Emissions such as CO2, NOx, CH4, and other compounds originating from these fires are suspected to contribute substantially to changes in global biogeochemical processes. Limited quantitative data exist detailing characteristics of biomass, burning conditions, and the postfire environment in African savannas. Fourteen test sites, differentiated by distinct burn frequency histories and land-use patterns, were established and burned during August and September 1992 in savanna parklands of South Africa and savanna woodlands of Zambia. Vegetation physiognomy, available fuel loads, the levels of biomass consumed by fire, environmental conditions, and fire behavior are described. In the South African sites, total aboveground fuel loads ranged from 2218 to 5492 kg ha-1 where fire return intervals were 1-4 years and exceeded 7000 kg ha-1 at a site subjected to 38 years of fire exclusion. However, fireline intensity was only 1419 kW m-1 at the fire exclusion site, while ranging from 480 to 6130 kW m-1 among the frequent fire sites. In Zambia, total aboveground fuel loads ranged from 3164 kg ha-1 in a hydromorphic grassland to 7343 kg ha-1 in a fallow shifting cultivation site. Dormant grass and litter constituted 70-98% of the total fuel load among all sites. Although downed woody debris was a relatively minor fuel component at most sites, it constituted 43-57% of the total fuel load in the fire exclusion and shifting cultivation sites. Fire line intensity ranged between 1734 and 4061 kW m-1 among all Zambian sites. Mean grass consumption generally exceeded 95%, while downed woody debris consumption ranged from 3 to 73% at all sites. In tropical savannas and savanna woodlands of southern Africa, differences in environmental conditions, land- use patterns, and fire regimes influence vegetation characteristics and thus influence fire behavior and biomass

  5. Competition between trees and grasses for both soil water and mineral nitrogen in dry savannas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donzelli, D; De Michele, C; Scholes, R J

    2013-09-07

    The co-existence of trees and grasses in savannas in general can be the result of processes involving competition for resources (e.g. water and nutrients) or differential response to disturbances such as fire, animals and human activities; or a combination of both broad mechanisms. In moist savannas, the tree-grass coexistence is mainly attributed to of disturbances, while in dry savannas, limiting resources are considered the principal mechanism of co-existence. Virtually all theoretical explorations of tree-grass dynamics in dry savannas consider only competition for soil water. Here we investigate whether coexistence could result from a balanced competition for two resources, namely soil water and mineral nitrogen. We introduce a simple dynamical resource-competition model for trees and grasses. We consider two alternative hypotheses: (1) trees are the superior competitors for nitrogen while grasses are superior competitors for water, and (2) vice-versa. We study the model properties under the two hypotheses and test each hypothesis against data from 132 dry savannas in Africa using Kendall's test of independence. We find that Hypothesis 1 gets much more support than Hypothesis 2, and more support than the null hypothesis that neither is operative. We further consider gradients of rainfall and nitrogen availability and find that the Hypothesis 1 model reproduces the observed patterns in nature. We do not consider our results to definitively show that tree-grass coexistence in dry savannas is due to balanced competition for water and nitrogen, but show that this mechanism is a possibility, which cannot be a priori excluded and should thus be considered along with the more traditional explanations. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Nutrient dynamics and plant assemblages of Macrotermes falciger mounds in a savanna ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muvengwi, Justice; Ndagurwa, Hilton G. T.; Nyenda, Tatenda; Mbiba, Monicah

    2016-10-01

    Termites through mound construction and foraging activities contribute significantly to carbon and nutrient fluxes in nutrient-poor savannas. Despite this recognition, studies on the influence of termite mounds on carbon and nitrogen dynamics in sub-tropical savannas are limited. In this regard, we examined soil nutrient concentrations, organic carbon and nitrogen mineralization in incubation experiments in mounds of Macrotermes falciger and surrounding soils of sub-tropical savanna, northeast Zimbabwe. We also addressed whether termite mounds altered the plant community and if effects were similar across functional groups i.e. grasses, forbs or woody plants. Mound soils had significantly higher silt and clay content, pH and concentrations of calcium (Ca), magnesium (Mg), potassium (K), organic carbon (C), ammonium (NH4+) and nitrate (NO3-) than surrounding soils, with marginal differences in phosphorus (P) and sodium (Na) between mounds and matrix soils. Nutrient enrichment increased by a factor ranging from 1.5 for C, 4.9 for Mg up to 10.3 for Ca. Although C mineralization, nitrification and nitrification fraction were similar between mounds and matrix soils, nitrogen mineralization was elevated on mounds relative to surrounding matrix soils. As a result, termite mounds supported unique plant communities rich and abundant in woody species but less diverse in grasses and forbs than the surrounding savanna matrix in response to mound-induced shifts in soil parameters specifically increased clay content, drainage and water availability, nutrient status and base cation (mainly Ca, Mg and Na) concentration. In conclusion, by altering soil properties such as texture, moisture content and nutrient status, termite mounds can alter the structure and composition of sub-tropical savanna plant communities, and these results are consistent with findings in other savanna systems suggesting that increase in soil clay content, nutrient status and associated changes in the plant

  7. Spatial pattern enhances ecosystem functioning in an African savanna.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert M Pringle

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available The finding that regular spatial patterns can emerge in nature from local interactions between organisms has prompted a search for the ecological importance of these patterns. Theoretical models have predicted that patterning may have positive emergent effects on fundamental ecosystem functions, such as productivity. We provide empirical support for this prediction. In dryland ecosystems, termite mounds are often hotspots of plant growth (primary productivity. Using detailed observations and manipulative experiments in an African savanna, we show that these mounds are also local hotspots of animal abundance (secondary and tertiary productivity: insect abundance and biomass decreased with distance from the nearest termite mound, as did the abundance, biomass, and reproductive output of insect-eating predators. Null-model analyses indicated that at the landscape scale, the evenly spaced distribution of termite mounds produced dramatically greater abundance, biomass, and reproductive output of consumers across trophic levels than would be obtained in landscapes with randomly distributed mounds. These emergent properties of spatial pattern arose because the average distance from an arbitrarily chosen point to the nearest feature in a landscape is minimized in landscapes where the features are hyper-dispersed (i.e., uniformly spaced. This suggests that the linkage between patterning and ecosystem functioning will be common to systems spanning the range of human management intensities. The centrality of spatial pattern to system-wide biomass accumulation underscores the need to conserve pattern-generating organisms and mechanisms, and to incorporate landscape patterning in efforts to restore degraded habitats and maximize the delivery of ecosystem services.

  8. Multiple endmember spectral-angle-mapper (SAM) analysis improves discrimination of Savanna tree species

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Cho, Moses A

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available of this paper was to evaluate the classification performance of a multiple-endmember spectral angle mapper (SAM) classification approach in discriminating seven common African savanna tree species and to compare the results with the traditional SAM classifier...

  9. Soil erosion and deposition before and after fire in oak savannas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peter F. Ffolliott; Gerald J. Gottfried; Hui Chen; Aaron T. Kauffman; Cody L. Stropki; Daniel G. Neary

    2013-01-01

    Effects of low severity prescribed burning treatments and a wildfire on soil erosion and deposition in the oak savannas in the Southwestern Borderlands are reported. Measurements in the spring and fall, respectively, characterize soil movements following winter rains and high-intensity summer rainstorms. Annual values are also presented. Relationships between soil...

  10. Biomass partitioning and root morphology of savanna trees across a water gradient

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tomlinson, K.W.; Sterck, F.J.; Bongers, F.; Silva, da D.A.; Barbosa, E.R.; Ward, D.; Bakker, F.T.; Kaauwen, van M.P.W.; Prins, H.H.T.; Bie, de S.; Langevelde, van F.

    2012-01-01

    1. Plant organ biomass partitioning has been hypothesized to be driven by resources, such that species from drier environments allocate more biomass to roots than species from wetter environments to access water at greater soil depths. In savanna systems, fire may select for greater allocation to

  11. Changing forest-woodland-savanna mosaics in Uganda: with implications for conservation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nangendo, G.

    2005-01-01

    Forest-Woodland-Savanna (FWS) mosaics are complex, highly varied and dynamic landscapes.Until recently, they were considered poor in terms of biodiversity. Consequently, only few scientific studies have been done on them and little attention has been paid to their

  12. Alien plant invasions in tropical and sub-tropical savannas: patterns, processes and prospects

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Foxcroft, L. C.; Richardson, D. M.; Rejmánek, M.; Pyšek, Petr

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 12, č. 12 (2010), s. 3913-3933 ISSN 1387-3547 R&D Projects: GA MŠk LC06073 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : savannas * plant invasions * world Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 3.474, year: 2010

  13. Trophic interactions among invertebrates in termitaria in the African savanna : a stable isotope approach

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    De Visser, Sarah N.; Freymann, Bernd P.; Schnyder, Hans

    2008-01-01

    1. Termites (Isoptera) in tropical savannas are known as ecosystem engineers, affecting the spatial and temporal distribution of water, carbon, cations, and nutrients through their mound structures. Their mounds, however, also offer habitation to diverse taxa and feeding guilds of other

  14. Interacting effects of grass height and herbivores on the establishment of an encroaching savanna shrub

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hagenah, N.; Munkert, H.; Gerhardt, K.; Olff, H.

    2009-01-01

    Shrub encroachment is a widely observed problem in Southern African savannas. Although the effects of herbivory and grass height on woody species recruitment have been studied individually, little information exists about how these factors interact. In this study seeds and seedlings of the

  15. Synthesis of field experiments concerning the grass layer in the savanna regions of southern Africa

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    O'Connor, TG

    1985-10-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of this synthesis of long term experiments was to develop an account of how the principal determinants (rainfall, soil type, woody/grass ratio, herbivory, fire) influence the dynamics of the grass layer of southern African savannas...

  16. Improved quality of beneath-canopy grass in South African savannas: Local and seasonal variation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Treydte, A.C.; Looringh van Beeck, F.A.; Ludwig, F.; Heitkonig, I.M.A.

    2008-01-01

    Questions: Do large trees improve the nutrient content and the structure of the grass layer in savannas? Does the magnitude of this improvement differ with locality ( soil nutrients) and season ( water availability)? Are grass structure and species composition beneath tree canopies influenced by

  17. Composition and species diversity of pine-wiregrass savannas of the Green Swamp, North Carolina

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joan Walker; Robert K. Peet

    1983-01-01

    Fire-maintained, species-rich pines wiregrass savannas in the Green Swamp, North Carolina were sampled over their natural range of environmental conditions and fire frequencies. Species composition, species richness, diversity (Exp H', I/ C), and aboveground production were documented and fertilization experiments conducted to assess possible mechanisms for the...

  18. SEASONAL SOIL FLUXES OF CARBON MONOXIDE IN BURNED AND UNBURNED BRAZILIAN SAVANNAS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soil-atmosphere fluxes of carbon monoxide (CO) were measured from September 1999 through November 2000 in savanna areas in central Brazil (Cerrado) under different fire regimes using transparent and opaque static chambers. Studies focused on two vegetation types, cerrado stricto...

  19. Trophic ecology of Lepidoptera larvae associated with woody vegetation in a savanna ecosystem

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Scholtz, CH

    1982-06-01

    Full Text Available This study represents a quantitative survey of a Lepidoptera community and deals with the trophic ecology of the 27 species of foliage-feeding Lepidoptera on the eight dominant woody plants in the Burkea africana-Eragrostis pallens savanna...

  20. Ethno-management of plinthic and ironpan soils in the savanna ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Ethno-management of plinthic and ironpan soils in the savanna regions of West Africa. ... Ghana Journal of Agricultural Science ... tracts of land, the Zaï method of chiselling into the pan and growing crops in the pits is adopted These indigenous farmers' practices need scientific improvement to make them more effective.

  1. Dry season mapping of savanna forage quality, using the hyperspectral Carnegie

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Knox, N.; Skidmore, A.K.; Prins, H.H.T.; Asner, P.; Werff, van der H.M.A.; Boer, de W.F.; Waal, van der C.; Knegt, de H.J.; Kohi, E.; Slotow, R.; Grant, R.C.

    2011-01-01

    Forage quality within an African savanna depends upon limiting nutrients (nitrogen and phosphorus) and nutrients that constrain the intake rates (non-digestible fibre) of herbivores. These forage quality nutrients are particularly crucial in the dry season when concentrations of limiting nutrients

  2. Impact of goat browsing on Aloe ferox in a South African savanna ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The extent and impact of the utilisation of Aloe ferox by Boer goats during winter in a South African savanna was determined using a plant-based approach. All Aloe plants rooted within the transects were eaten by goats, with small plants utilised more frequently than tall plants. The density of dying and dead Aloe plants was ...

  3. Unlocking resources in savannas: how goats and other mixed feeders overcome the negative effects of tannins

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mkhize, N.R.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract

    This thesis contributes insights on how condensed tannins might mediate the interactions between woody plants and large herbivores in the African savannas. Current understanding in this regard is still based on data from short-term laboratory experiments, mostly

  4. Long range lateral root activity by neo-tropical savanna trees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leonel da S. L. Sternberg; Sandra Bucci; Augusto Franco; Guillermo Goldstein; William A. Hoffman; Frederick C. Meinzer; Marcelo Z. Moreira; Fabian. Scholz

    2004-01-01

    The extent of water uptake by lateral roots of savanna trees in the Brazilian highlands was measured by irrigating two 2 by 2 m plots with deuterium-enriched water and assaying for the abundance of deuterium in stem water from trees inside and at several distances from the irrigation plots. Stem water of trees inside the irrigation plots was highly enriched compared to...

  5. Estimating and mapping grass phosphorus concentration in an African savanna using hyperspectral image data

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mutanga, O.; Kumar, L.

    2007-01-01

    We tested the utility of imaging spectroscopy and neural networks to map phosphorus concentration in savanna grass using airborne HyMAP image data. We also sought to ascertain the key wavelengths for phosphorus prediction using hyperspectral remote sensing. The remote sensing of foliar phosphorus

  6. Ecology and management of oak woodlands and savannas in the southwestern Borderlands Region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gerald J. Gottfried; Peter F. Ffolliott

    2013-01-01

    Management of the Madrean oak woodlands and the less dense and ecologically different oak savannas must be based on sound ecological information. However, relatively little is known about the Madrean oak ecosystems in spite of the fact that they cover about 80,000 km2 in the southwestern United States and northern Mexico. Emory oak (Quercus emoryi), the dominant tree...

  7. Recent shift from forest to savanna burning in the Amazon Basin observed by satellite

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ten Hoeve, J E; Jacobson, M Z; Remer, L A; Correia, A L

    2012-01-01

    The numbers of fires detected on forest, savanna and transition lands during the 2002–10 biomass burning seasons in Amazonia are shown using fire count data and co-located land cover classifications from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS). The ratio of forest fires to savanna fires has varied substantially over the study period, with a maximum ratio of 0.65:1 in 2005 and a minimum ratio of 0.27:1 in 2009, with the four lowest years occurring in 2007–10. The burning during the droughts of 2007 and 2010 is attributed to a higher number of savanna fires relative to the drought of 2005. A decrease in the regional mean single scattering albedo of biomass burning aerosols, consistent with the shift from forest to savanna burning, is also shown. During the severe drought of 2010, forest fire detections were lower in many areas compared with 2005, even though the drought was more severe in 2010. This result suggests that improved fire management practices, including stricter burning regulations as well as lower deforestation burning, may have reduced forest fires in 2010 relative to 2005 in some areas of the Amazon Basin. (letter)

  8. Impacts of communal fuelwood extraction on lidar-estimated biomass patterns of savanna woodlands

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Wessels, Konrad J

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Approximately 54% of rural households in South Africa continue to use wood as their main source of energy, mainly for cooking and heating. The provision of biomass by savanna woodlands is thus of considerable value to rural households and therefore...

  9. Characterization of habitat preferences for selected wildlife species in encinal savannas of the Southwest [Poster

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wendy D. Jones; Carlton M. Jones; Peter F. Ffolliott; Gerald J. Gottfried

    2005-01-01

    The encinal savannas of the sub-mogollon southwestern United States are important for livestock grazing and wildlife habitat. Little data have been collected on the ecology of these Sierra Madrean types of woodland land areas, which makes management difficult. Obtaining information such as habitat preferences for selected wildlife species and livestock can be an...

  10. Abundance of birds in the oak savannas of the southwestern United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wendy D. Jones; Carlton M. Jones; Peter F. Ffolliott; Gerald J. Gottfried

    2005-01-01

    Oak ecosystems of the Southwestern United States are important habitats for a variety of wildlife species. Information is available on the abundance and habitat preferences of some species inhabiting the more densely structured oak woodlands, but little information is available on these topics for the comparatively open oak savannas. Studies are underway to alleviate...

  11. The importance of herbivore interactions for the dynamics of African savanna woodlands : an hypothesis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Van de Koppel, J; Prins, HHT

    Current hypotheses to explain dynamic transitions between savanna grasslands and woodlands in Africa focus on grazing by elephant or the influence of fire. Using a simple mathematical model, this paper argues that interactions between small herbivores such as impala or buffalo and large herbivores

  12. Assessing effect of rainfall on rate of alien shrub expansion in a southern African savanna

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Masocha, Mhosisi; Dube, Timothy; Skidmore, A.K.; Holmgren, Milena; Prins, Herbert

    2017-01-01

    Understanding the environmental factors governing the spread of alien shrubs is crucial for conserving biodiversity. In the semi-arid savannas of Africa, alien shrub invasion often occurs simultaneously with native shrub encroachment but climate-dependent differences in encroachments of native and

  13. Soil properties in fire-consumed log burnout openings in a Missouri oak savanna

    Science.gov (United States)

    Charles C. Rhoades; A. J. Meier; A. J. Rebertus

    2004-01-01

    Downed logs are known to increase species diversity in many forest ecosystems by increasing resource and structural complexity and by altering fire behavior in fire-prone ecosystems. In a frequently burned oak savanna in central Missouri, combustion of downed logs formed patches that have remained free of herbaceous vegetation for more than 3 years. To assess the...

  14. STRUCTURE OF MICROBIAL COMMUNITIES IN NATIVE AND CONVERTED SAVANNA AREAS OF CENTRAL BRAZIL

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brazilian savannas (Cerrado) have suffered drastic changes in land use with major conversion of native areas to agriculture since 1960. Burning, both due to natural conditions and as a human-induced practice, is a common event during the dry season (April to September) and plays ...

  15. Hydraulic lift in a neotropical savanna: experimental manipulation and model simulations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fabian G. Scholz; Sandra J. Bucci; William A. Hoffmann; Frederick C. Meinzer; Guillermo Goldstein

    2010-01-01

    The objective of this study was to assess the magnitude of hydraulic lift in Brazilian savannas (Cerrado) and to test the hypothesis that hydraulic lift by herbaceous plants contributes substantially to slowing the decline of water potential and water storage in the upper soil layers during the dry season. To this effect, field observations of soil water content and...

  16. From savanna to campus woodlot: the historical ecology of farm woodlots in southern Illinois

    Science.gov (United States)

    C. M. Ruffner; A. Trieu; S. Chandy; M. D. Davis; D. Fishel; G. Gipson; J. Lhotka; K. Lynch; P. Perkins; S. van de Gevel; W. Watson; E. White

    2003-01-01

    The historical ecology of Thompson Woods, a 4.1 ha forest remnant on the campus of Southern Illinois University-Carbondale, was investigated through stand structure analysis, dendroecology, and historical records. Historical records indicate the area was a savanna ecosystem prior to European settlement dominated by large, open grown mixed oak-hickory trees. No trees in...

  17. The influence of savanna trees on nutrient, water and light availability and the understorey vegetation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ludwig, F.; Kroon, de H.; Berendse, F.; Prins, H.H.T.

    2004-01-01

    In an East African savanna herbaceous layer productivity and species composition were studied around Acacia tortilis trees of three different age classes, as well as around dead trees and in open grassland patches. The effects of trees on nutrient, light and water availability were measured to

  18. Application of Object Based Classification and High Resolution Satellite Imagery for Savanna Ecosystem Analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jane Southworth

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Savanna ecosystems are an important component of dryland regions and yet are exceedingly difficult to study using satellite imagery. Savannas are composed are varying amounts of trees, shrubs and grasses and typically traditional classification schemes or vegetation indices cannot differentiate across class type. This research utilizes object based classification (OBC for a region in Namibia, using IKONOS imagery, to help differentiate tree canopies and therefore woodland savanna, from shrub or grasslands. The methodology involved the identification and isolation of tree canopies within the imagery and the creation of tree polygon layers had an overall accuracy of 84%. In addition, the results were scaled up to a corresponding Landsat image of the same region, and the OBC results compared to corresponding pixel values of NDVI. The results were not compelling, indicating once more the problems of these traditional image analysis techniques for savanna ecosystems. Overall, the use of the OBC holds great promise for this ecosystem and could be utilized more frequently in studies of vegetation structure.

  19. Mapping Cropland in Smallholder-Dominated Savannas: Integrating Remote Sensing Techniques and Probabilistic Modeling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sean Sweeney

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Traditional smallholder farming systems dominate the savanna range countries of sub-Saharan Africa and provide the foundation for the region’s food security. Despite continued expansion of smallholder farming into the surrounding savanna landscapes, food insecurity in the region persists. Central to the monitoring of food security in these countries, and to understanding the processes behind it, are reliable, high-quality datasets of cultivated land. Remote sensing has been frequently used for this purpose but distinguishing crops under certain stages of growth from savanna woodlands has remained a major challenge. Yet, crop production in dryland ecosystems is most vulnerable to seasonal climate variability, amplifying the need for high quality products showing the distribution and extent of cropland. The key objective in this analysis is the development of a classification protocol for African savanna landscapes, emphasizing the delineation of cropland. We integrate remote sensing techniques with probabilistic modeling into an innovative workflow. We present summary results for this methodology applied to a land cover classification of Zambia’s Southern Province. Five primary land cover categories are classified for the study area, producing an overall map accuracy of 88.18%. Omission error within the cropland class is 12.11% and commission error 9.76%.

  20. Structure, root systems and periodicity of savanna plants and vegetations in Northern Surinam

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Donselaar-ten Bokkel Huinink, van W.A.E.

    1966-01-01

    From July 1958 to May 1959 an investigation was carried out of the relation between physiognomic characteristics of the vegetation and the habitat on some savannas in the vicinity of Zanderij, Surinam. Root systems, structure, periodicity and characteristics of the leaves were considered, both of

  1. Dynamics of woody vegetation in a semi-arid savanna, with a focus ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Increases in the tree:grass ratio with accompanying changes in herbaceous composition, called bush or shrub encroachment, is a worldwide phenomenon in ... Acacia mellifera-dominated savannas in the Northern Cape, South Africa, were investigated by means of vegetation classification and analyses of sequential aerial ...

  2. Long-term trends and interannual variability of forest, savanna and agricultural fires in South America

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Chen, Y.; Morton, D. C.; Yin, Y. F.; Collatz, G. J.; Kasibhatla, P. S.; van der Werf, G.R.; DeFries, R. S.; Randerson, J. T.

    2013-01-01

    Background: Landscape fires in South America have considerable impacts on ecosystems, air quality and the climate system. We examined long-term trends and interannual variability of forest, savanna and agricultural fires for the continent during 2001-2012 using multiple satellite-derived fire

  3. Elephant distribution around a volcanic shield dominated by a mosaic of forest and savanna (Marsabit, Kenya)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ngene, S.M.; Skidmore, A.K.; Gils, H.; Douglas-Hamilton, I.; Omondi, P.

    2009-01-01

    We investigated the factors that influenced the distribution of the African elephant around a volcanic shield dominated by a mosaic of forest and savanna in northern Kenya. Data on elephant distribution were acquired from four female and five bull elephants, collared with satellite-linked

  4. Gastrointestinal Parasites of Savanna Chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes schweinfurthii) in Ugalla, Tanzania

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kalousová, B.; Piel, A. K.; Pomajbíková, Kateřina; Modrý, David; Stewart, F.A.; Petrželková, Klára Judita

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 35, č. 2 (2014), s. 463-475 ISSN 0164-0291 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : hominoid * Pan troglodytes schweinfurthii * gastrointestinal parasites * savanna * Spirurids * transmission * Ugalla * Tanzania Subject RIV: GJ - Animal Vermins ; Diseases, Veterinary Medicine Impact factor: 1.993, year: 2014

  5. Gastrointestinal parasites of savanna chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes schweinfurthii) in Ugalla, Tanzania

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kalousová, B.; Piel, A. K.; Pomajbíková, K.; Modrý, D.; Stewart, F. A.; Petrželková, Klára Judita

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 35, č. 2 (2014), s. 436-475 ISSN 0164-0291 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA206/09/0927 Institutional support: RVO:68081766 Keywords : Hominoid * Pan troglodytes schweinfurthii * Gastrointestinal parasites * Savanna * Spirurids * Transmission * Ugalla * Tanzania Subject RIV: EG - Zoology Impact factor: 1.993, year: 2014

  6. Water-removed spectra increase the retrieval accuracy when estimating savanna grass nitrogen and phosphorus concentrations

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Ramoelo, Abel

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available . Ritchie and H. H. T. Prins (2002). Global enviromental controls of diversity of large hervivores. Nature 415: 901-904. 26 Owen-Smith, N. and S. M. Cooper (1987). Palatabilty of woody plants to browsing ruminants in a South African savanna. In...

  7. Spatial vegetation patterns and neighborhood competition among woody plants in an East African savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dohn, Justin; Augustine, David J; Hanan, Niall P; Ratnam, Jayashree; Sankaran, Mahesh

    2017-02-01

    The majority of research on savanna vegetation dynamics has focused on the coexistence of woody and herbaceous vegetation. Interactions among woody plants in savannas are relatively poorly understood. We present data from a 10-yr longitudinal study of spatially explicit growth patterns of woody vegetation in an East African savanna following exclusion of large herbivores and in the absence of fire. We examined plant spatial patterns and quantified the degree of competition among woody individuals. Woody plants in this semiarid savanna exhibit strongly clumped spatial distributions at scales of 1-5 m. However, analysis of woody plant growth rates relative to their conspecific and heterospecific neighbors revealed evidence for strong competitive interactions at neighborhood scales of up to 5 m for most woody plant species. Thus, woody plants were aggregated in clumps despite significantly decreased growth rates in close proximity to neighbors, indicating that the spatial distribution of woody plants in this region depends on dispersal and establishment processes rather than on competitive, density-dependent mortality. However, our documentation of suppressive effects of woody plants on neighbors also suggests a potentially important role for tree-tree competition in controlling vegetation structure and indicates that the balanced-competition hypothesis may contribute to well-known patterns in maximum tree cover across rainfall gradients in Africa. © 2016 by the Ecological Society of America.

  8. Fire and life in Tarangire : effects of burning and herbivory on an East African Savanna system

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vijver, van de C.A.D.M.

    1999-01-01

    This thesis investigates the effects of fire on quality and quantity of forage for grazers in the savannas of East Africa where fire has been used as a tool in pasture management for centuries. Hereby the mechanisms that cause the effects, as well as the manner in which the effects are

  9. Tree cover in sub-Saharan Africa: rainfall and fire constrain forest and savanna as alternative stable states

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Staver, AC

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Savannas are known as ecosystems with tree cover below climate-defined equilibrium values. However, a predictive framework for understanding constraints on tree cover is lacking. The authors present a) a spatially extensive analysis of tree cover...

  10. Mediterranean savanna system: understanding and modeling of olive orchard.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brilli, Lorenzo; Moriondo, Marco; Bindi, Marco

    2013-04-01

    Nowadays most of the studies on C and N exchange were focused on forest ecosystems and crop systems, while only few studies have been focused on so called "savanna systems". They are long-term agro-ecosystems (fruit trees, grapevines and olive trees, etc.) usually characterized by two different layers (ground vegetation and trees). Generally, there is a lack of knowledge about these systems due to their intrinsic structural complexity (different eco-physiological characteristics so as agricultural practices). However, given their long-term carbon storage capacity, these systems can play a fundamental role in terms of global C cycle. Among all of them, the role that olive trees can play in C sequestration should not be neglected, especially in Mediterranean areas where they typify the rural landscape and are widely cultivated (Loumou and Giourga, 2003). It is therefore fundamental modelling the C-fluxes exchanges coming from these systems through a tool able to well reproduce these dynamics in one of the most exposed areas to the risk of climate change (IPCC, 2007). In this work, 2 years of Net CO2 Ecosystem Exchange (NEE) measures from eddy covariance were used to test the biogeochemistry model DayCent. The study was conducted in a rain-fed olive orchard situated in Follonica, South Tuscany, Italy (42 ° 55'N, 10 ° 45'E), in an agricultural area near the coast. The instrumentation for flux measurement was placed 1.9 m above the canopy top (6.5 m from the ground) so that the footprint area, expressed as the area containing 90% of the observed flux, was almost entirely contained within the olive orchard limits (Brilli et al., in press). Ancillary slow sensors have included soil temperature profiles, global radiation, air temperature and humidity, rain gauge. Fluxes of sensible heat, latent heat, momentum and CO2 as well as ancillary data were derived at half-hourly time resolution. Specific soil (texture, current and historical land use and vegetation cover) and

  11. The effects of gap size and disturbance type on invasion of wet pine savanna by cogongrass, Imperata cylindrica (Poaceae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, S.E.; Grace, J.B.

    2000-01-01

    Cogongrass is a nonindigenous species perceived to threaten native communities of the southeastern United States through modification of species composition and alteration of community processes. To examine how gap size and disturbance type influence the invasion of wet pine savannas by cogongrass, we performed three field experiments to evaluate the response of cogongrass seeds and transplanted seedlings to four different gap sizes, four types of site disturbance, and recent burning of savanna vegetation. Cogongrass germinated, survived, and grew in all gap sizes, from 0 to 100 cm in diameter. Similarly, disturbance type had no effect on germination or seedling and transplant survival. Tilling, however, significantly enhanced transplanted seedling growth, resulting in a tenfold increase in biomass over the other disturbance types. Seedling survival to 1 and 2 mo was greater in burned savanna than unburned savanna, although transplant survival and growth were not affected by burning. Results of this study suggest that cogongrass can germinate, survive, and grow in wet pine savanna communities regardless of gap size or type of disturbance, including burning. Burning of savanna vegetation may enhance establishment by improving early seedling survival, and soil disturbance can facilitate invasion of cogongrass by enhancing plant growth.

  12. Post-fire reproduction of herbs at a savanna-gallery forest boundary in Distrito Federal, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. G. Massi

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract In Cerrado, studies of post-fire vegetation recovery show that some herbaceous species are able to flower shortly after fires. However, these were mainly short-term studies that focused on grasslands and savannas. Little is known about the effects of fire on ground layer of forests that border the savannas in Central Brazil. Thus, an accidental burning gave us the opportunity to describe the reproductive activity of the ground layer vegetation after a fire event along a savanna-forest boundary at the IBGE Ecological Reserve, Brasília, Brazil. During the 16-month of the inventory, we registered 170 herbaceous species flowering or fruiting, of which 52 species (31% may have been influenced by fire that changed their times of reproduction. In the savanna plots reproduction peaked at the end of the rainy season. Of the total number of reproducing species, 90 species occurred only in the savanna and four in the forest. Five herbs were recorded in the forest, savanna and border environments. Late dry season fire probably lead the majority of herbaceous species to have their reproduction spread throughout the study time.

  13. Post-fire reproduction of herbs at a savanna-gallery forest boundary in Distrito Federal, Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Massi, K G; Eugênio, C U O; Franco, A C

    2017-11-01

    In Cerrado, studies of post-fire vegetation recovery show that some herbaceous species are able to flower shortly after fires. However, these were mainly short-term studies that focused on grasslands and savannas. Little is known about the effects of fire on ground layer of forests that border the savannas in Central Brazil. Thus, an accidental burning gave us the opportunity to describe the reproductive activity of the ground layer vegetation after a fire event along a savanna-forest boundary at the IBGE Ecological Reserve, Brasília, Brazil. During the 16-month of the inventory, we registered 170 herbaceous species flowering or fruiting, of which 52 species (31%) may have been influenced by fire that changed their times of reproduction. In the savanna plots reproduction peaked at the end of the rainy season. Of the total number of reproducing species, 90 species occurred only in the savanna and four in the forest. Five herbs were recorded in the forest, savanna and border environments. Late dry season fire probably lead the majority of herbaceous species to have their reproduction spread throughout the study time.

  14. Trace gas emissions to the atmosphere by biomass burning in the west African savannas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frouin, Robert J.; Iacobellis, Samuel F.; Razafimpanilo, Herisoa; Somerville, Richard C. J.

    1994-01-01

    Savanna fires and atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) detection and estimating burned area using Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer_(AVHRR) reflectance data are investigated in this two part research project. The first part involves carbon dioxide flux estimates and a three-dimensional transport model to quantify the effect of north African savanna fires on atmospheric CO2 concentration, including CO2 spatial and temporal variability patterns and their significance to global emissions. The second article describes two methods used to determine burned area from AVHRR data. The article discusses the relationship between the percentage of burned area and AVHRR channel 2 reflectance (the linear method) and Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) (the nonlinear method). A comparative performance analysis of each method is described.

  15. Dynamics in carbon exchange fluxes for a grazed semi-arid savanna ecosystem in West Africa

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tagesson, Torbern; Fensholt, Rasmus; Cropley, Ford

    2015-01-01

    variable in scaling carbon fluxes from ground observations using earth observation data. The net ecosystem exchange of carbon dioxide (NEE) 2010-2013 was measured using the eddy covariance technique at a grazed semi-arid savanna site in Senegal, West Africa. Night-time NEE was not related to temperature......-arid savanna sites; half-hourly GPP and Reco peaked at -43μmol CO2m-2s-1 and 20μmol CO2m-2s-1, and daily GPP and Reco peaked at -15gCm-2 and 12gCm-2, respectively. Possible explanations for the high CO2 fluxes are a high fraction of C4 species, alleviated water stress conditions, and a strong grazing pressure...

  16. Trait shifts associated with the subshrub life-history strategy in a tropical savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giroldo, A B; Scariot, A; Hoffmann, W A

    2017-10-01

    Over the past 10 million years, tropical savanna environments have selected for small growth forms within woody plant lineages. The result has been the evolution of subshrubs (geoxyles), presumably as an adaptation to frequent fire. To evaluate the traits associated with the shift from tree to subshrub growth forms, we compared seed biomass, germination, survival, resprouting, biomass allocation, and photosynthesis between congeneric trees and subshrubs, and quantified phylogenetic conservatism. Despite large differences in adult morphology between trees and subshrub species, the differences are modest in seedlings, and most of the variation in traits was explained by genus, indicating considerable phylogenic conservatism. Regardless, tree seedlings invested more heavily in aboveground growth, compared to subshrubs, which is consistent with the adult strategy of savanna trees, which depend on a large resistant-fire stem. Subshrub seedlings also invest in greater non-structural carbohydrate reserves, likely as an adaptation to the high fire frequencies typical of tropical savannas. The modest differences as seedlings suggest that selective pressures during early development may not have contributed substantially to the evolution of the subshrub growth form and that the distinct allocation and life history must arise later in life. This is consistent with the interpretation that the subshrub growth form arose as a life-history strategy in which maturity is reached at a small stem size, allowing them to reproduce despite repeated fire-induced topkill. The convergent evolution of subshrubs within multiple tree lineages reaffirms the importance of fire in the origin and diversification of the flora of mesic savannas.

  17. Spatial Heterogeneity and Sources of Soil Carbon in Southern African Savannas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Macko, S.; Wang, L.; Okin, G.

    2007-12-01

    Soil organic carbon (SOC) is one of the largest and most dynamic reservoirs of C on Earth, with nearly twice as much C stored in SOC than in the biosphere and atmosphere combined. SOC storage in global tropical savannas constitutes approximately 56 Gt of C, which rises to 216 Gt of C (i.e., about 17% of the terrestrial non- agricultural SOC), when woodlands, shrublands, and desert scrub are included. Savannas cover about 20% of the global land surface, including about one-half of Africa, Australia and South America. The shared dominance of trees and grasses in savannas, the dominant physiognomy in southern Africa, add more complexity to soil C pool partitioning and dynamics than is found in landscapes with a single physiognomy. Here, the spatial variability of the soil C pool was investigated with particular emphasis on understanding the contribution to SOC from trees and grasses at two savanna sites of the Kalahari Transect, one wet and the other dry. Using a combination of stable isotope techniques and geostatistics, the results showed that spatial patterns of soil δ13 C exist and were related to the distributions of woody (C3) and herbaceous (C4) vegetation at both sites. Heterogeneity of the sources of SOC, as well as heterogeneity in the amount of SOC, was greater at the dry site relative to the wet site. At the dry site, the grasses were the major contributor to soil C whereas in the wet site, woody vegetation was the major contributor, regardless of the location with respect to woody canopies.

  18. Radiation absorption and use by humid savanna grassland: assessment using remote sensing and modelling

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Roux, X. le; Gauthier, H.; Begue, A.; Sinoquet, H.

    1997-01-01

    The components of the canopy radiation balance in photosynthetically active radiation (PAR), phytomass and leaf area index (LAI) were measured during a complete annual cycle in an annually burned African humid savanna. Directional reflectances measured by a hand-held radiometer were used to compute the canopy normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI). The fraction f APAR of PAR absorbed by the canopy (APAR) and canopy reflectances were simulated by the scattering from arbitrarily inclined leaves (SAIL) and the radiation interception in row intercropping (RIRI) models. The daily PAR to solar radiation ratio was linearly related to the daily fraction of diffuse solar radiation with an annual value around 0.47. The observed f APAR was non-linearly related to NDVI. The SAIL model simulated reasonably well directional reflectances but noticeably overestimated f APAR during most of the growing season. Comparison of simulations performed with the 1D and 3D versions of the RIRI model highlighted the weak influence of the heterogeneous structure of the canopy after fire and of the vertical distribution of dead and green leaves on total f APAR . Daily f APAR values simulated by the 3D-RIRI model were linearly related to and 9.8% higher than observed values. For sufficient soil water availability, the net production efficiency ϵ n of the savanna grass canopy was 1.92 and 1.28 g DM MJ −1 APAR (where DM stands for dry matter) during early regrowth and mature stage, respectively. In conclusion, the linear relationship between NDVI and f APAR used in most primary production models operating at large scales may slightly overestimate f APAR by green leaves for the humid savanna biome. Moreover, the net production efficiency of humid savannas is close to or higher than values reported for the other major natural biomes. (author)

  19. The influence of canopy strata on remotely sensed observations of savanna-woodlands

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fuller, D.O.; Prince, S.D.; Astle, W.L.

    1997-01-01

    Upwelling radiance from savanna woodlands may originate from two separate layers: (1) the field layer, which is a mixture of soil, litter and herbs, and (2) the tree layer composed of woody parts and leaves. Unless detailed field data are available for a particular savanna location, it is unknown how the individual layers may influence the red and near-infrared signals and whether radiative interactions between layers are important. We employed an existing radiative transfer model (SAIL) in conjunction with a simple, single-scattering model to analyse the variation in Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) channel 1 and 2 response as well as NDVI for savanna-woodland vegetation in eastern Zambia. Linear fits between predicted and observed values of reflectance and NDVI were significant ( p 0.05) in the red and in NDVI, however, the model failed to explain a high proportion of the variation in near-infrared. Red and NDVI in sites where tree cover was high were also poorly modelled, which suggests that multiple interactions between canopy layers make a single-scattering model unreliable, particularly in the near-infrared. Modelled results were also compared to aircraft radiometer measurements provided by the integrated camera and radiometer instrument (ICAR). Simulations parameterized with field data suggest that the model may be used to infer tree and field layer influences at different points during the seasonal cycle. Results also suggest that the field layer dominated the signal in our savanna woodland sites throughout most points of the seasonal cycle, which is consistent with other canopy radiative-transfer studies. Simulations indicated that the tree layer was a relatively more important component of NDVI during the dry season when the field layer was largely senescent, accounting for 20-40 per cent of the satellite signal. (author)

  20. Seasonality and Interannual Variability of Carbon Uptake and Respiration in a California Oak Savanna

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, S.; Baldocchi, D.; Xu, L.

    2005-12-01

    Estimating terrestrial carbon sink with large-scale modeling research requires understanding the physiological and ecological processes associated with the carbon uptake and respiration of ecosystems and their variability in seasons and years. This study was conducted in an oak/grass savanna ecosystem in California, USA. The savanna ecosystem consists of blue oak trees ( Quercus douglasii) in the overstory and annual C3 grasses in the understory. Fluxes of CO2 were measured above the canopy (overstory) and the grasses (understory) from 2001 to 2005 with two eddy covariance systems. Under typical Mediterranean Climate, net ecosystem exchange of CO2 (NEE), ecosystem respiration (Reco), and gross primary production (GPP) in this savanna ecosystem had a distinctive dry-wet seasonal pattern. Leaf area index, leaf nitrogen concentration, and leaf carbon stable isotope discrimination reflected the responses of leaf to the seasonality and interannual variability. Light- use efficiency, the ratio of GPP to absorbed photosynthetically active radiation (aPAR), was not consistent within a year or from year to year, indicating that photosynthesis process was constrained with low temperature during the beginning of the wet season and limited by precipitation during the summer drought. Annual NEE, Reco, and GPP above the canopy varied significantly between years, varying from -108 - 133 gC m-2, 780 - 988 gC m-2, and 646 - 963 gC m-2, respectively. The difference of interannual Reco was 1.2 times of that of interannual GPP. There was a tight relationship between annual NEE and the precipitation during the period with daily mean temperature varying between 10 - 20°C, equivalent to precipitation during March and April. The longer the period lasted, the higher carbon uptake occurred. Estimated annual NEE from 1949 - 2005 in the savanna ecosystem varied between ~-400 - 200 gC m-2.

  1. Topo-edaphic controls over woody plant biomass in South African savannas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. S. Colgan

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available The distribution of woody biomass in savannas reflects spatial patterns fundamental to ecosystem processes, such as water flow, competition, and herbivory, and is a key contributor to savanna ecosystem services, such as fuelwood supply. While total precipitation sets an upper bound on savanna woody biomass, the extent to which substrate and terrain constrain trees and shrubs below this maximum remains poorly understood, often occluded by local-scale disturbances such as fire and trampling. Here we investigate the role of hillslope topography and soil properties in controlling woody plant aboveground biomass (AGB in Kruger National Park, South Africa. Large-area sampling with airborne Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR provided a means to average across local-scale disturbances, revealing an unexpectedly linear relationship between AGB and hillslope-position on basalts, where biomass levels were lowest on crests, and linearly increased toward streams (R2 = 0.91. The observed pattern was different on granite substrates, where AGB exhibited a strongly non-linear relationship with hillslope position: AGB was high on crests, decreased midslope, and then increased near stream channels (R2 = 0.87. Overall, we observed 5-to-8-fold lower AGB on clayey, basalt-derived soil than on granites, and we suggest this is due to herbivore-fire interactions rather than lower hydraulic conductivity or clay shrinkage/swelling, as previously hypothesized. By mapping AGB within and outside fire and herbivore exclosures, we found that basalt-derived soils support tenfold higher AGB in the absence of fire and herbivory, suggesting high clay content alone is not a proximal limitation on AGB. Understanding how fire and herbivory contribute to AGB heterogeneity is critical to predicting future savanna carbon storage under a changing climate.

  2. Implication of climate change for the persistence of raptors in arid savanna

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wichmann, M.C.; Wissel, C. [UFZ-Center for Environmental Research, Dept. of Ecological Modelling, Leipzig (Germany); Jeltsch, F. [Univ. of Potsdam, Inst. for Biochemistry and Biology, Potsdam (Germany); Dean, W.R.J. [Univ. of Cape Town, Percy FitzPatrick Inst. of African Ornithology, Rondebosch (South Africa); Moloney, K.A. [Iowa State Univ., Dept. of Botany, Ames, IA (United States)

    2003-07-01

    Arid savannas are regarded as one of the ecosystems most likely to be affected by climate change. In these dry conditions, even top predators like raptors are affected by water availability and precipitation. However, few research initiatives have a adressed the question of how climate change will affect population dynamics and extinction risk of particular species in and ecosystems. Here, we use an individual-oriented modeling approach to conduct experiments on the population dynamics of long lived raptors. We investigate the potential impact of precipitation variation caused by climate change on raptors in and savanna using the tawny eagle (Aquila rapax) in the southern Kalahari as a case study. We simulated various modifications of precipitation scenarios predicted for climate change, such as lowered annual precipitation mean, increased inter-annual variation and increased auto-correlation in precipitation. We found a high impact of these modifications on extinction risk of tawny eagles, with reduced population persistence in most cases. Decreased mean annual precipitation and increased inter-annual variation both caused dramatic decreases in population persistence. Increased autocorrelation in precipitation led only to slightly accelerated extinction of simulated populations. Finally. for various patterns of periodically fluctuating precipitation, we found both increased and decreased population persistence. In summary, our results suggest that the impacts on raptor population dynamics and survival caused by climate change in and savannas will be great. We emphasize that even if under climate change the mean annual precipitation remains constant but the inter-annual variation increases the persistence of raptor populations in and savannas will decrease considerably. This suggests a new dimension, of climate change driven impacts on population persistence and consequently on biodiversity. However, more investigations on particular species and/or species groups

  3. Changes in soil organic carbon after burning in a forest-savanna edge

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Federico Sánchez Ojeda

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Soils are one of the largest terrestrial pools of carbon, yet there is still little understanding of spatial variability for ecosystems in the tropics. Fire plays an important role in neotropical savannas ecosystems and significantly contribute to global greenhouse gas (GHG fluxes. Nevertheless the impacts of burning on soil carbon is still uncertain in Latin America. We compared soil organic carbon (SOC in the first 20 cm depth in savannas in pre and post fire conditions along a forests-savanna edge typically present in these landscapes of the northern South America. We established 8 transects of 20 m longitude along the border with 1m2 plots sampled every 4 m. SOC pre-disturbance was on average 1.794 (±SE 0,043 and the minimum value found (1.08% was registered 6 months after the burning. Our results show that both the influence of the distance to the edge and the time of burning affect negatively the SOC and also there is a significant interaction between both variables. Our results provide improved estimates of the effect of fire on soil carbon stocks and its highly dynamic nature . We believe these finding will be a step to help better estimate GHG in this type of heterogeneous landscapes. Further it provides a tool for understanding C dynamics under a climate change context with predicted increased fire frequency, extent and severity.

  4. Fire feedbacks facilitate invasion of pine savannas by Brazilian pepper (Schinus terebinthifolius).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stevens, Jens T; Beckage, Brian

    2009-10-01

    * Fire disturbance can mediate the invasion of ecological communities by nonnative species. Nonnative plants that modify existing fire regimes may initiate a positive feedback that can facilitate their continued invasion. Fire-sensitive plants may successfully invade pyrogenic landscapes if they can inhibit fire in the landscape. * Here, we investigated whether the invasive shrub Brazilian pepper (Schinus terebinthifolius) can initiate a fire-suppression feedback in a fire-dependent pine savanna ecosystem in the southeastern USA. * We found that prescribed burns caused significant (30-45%) mortality of Brazilian pepper at low densities and that savannas with more frequent fires contained less Brazilian pepper. However, high densities of Brazilian pepper reduced fire temperature by up to 200 degrees C, and experienced as much as 80% lower mortality. * A cellular automaton model was used to demonstrate that frequent fire may control low-density populations, but that Brazilian pepper may reach a sufficient density during fire-free periods to initiate a positive feedback that reduces the frequency of fire and converts the savanna to an invasive-dominated forest.

  5. Rooting strategies in a subtropical savanna: a landscape-scale three-dimensional assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Yong; Boutton, Thomas W; Wu, X Ben; Wright, Cynthia L; Dion, Anais L

    2018-04-01

    In resource-limited savannas, the distribution and abundance of fine roots play an important role in acquiring essential resources and structuring vegetation patterns and dynamics. However, little is known regarding the three-dimensional distribution of fine roots in savanna ecosystems at the landscape scale. We quantified spatial patterns of fine root density to a depth of 1.2 m in a subtropical savanna landscape using spatially specific sampling. Kriged maps revealed that fine root density was highest at the centers of woody patches, decreased towards the canopy edges, and reached lowest values within the grassland matrix throughout the entire soil profile. Lacunarity analyses indicated that spatial heterogeneities of fine root density decreased continuously to a depth of 50 cm and then increased in deeper portions of the soil profile across this landscape. This vertical pattern might be related to inherent differences in root distribution between trees/shrubs and herbaceous species, and the presence/absence of an argillic horizon across this landscape. The greater density of fine roots beneath woody patches in both upper and lower portions of the soil profile suggests an ability to acquire disproportionately more resources than herbaceous species, which may facilitate the development and persistence of woody patches across this landscape.

  6. Estimating vegetation dryness to optimize fire risk assessment with spot vegetation satellite data in savanna ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verbesselt, J.; Somers, B.; Lhermitte, S.; van Aardt, J.; Jonckheere, I.; Coppin, P.

    2005-10-01

    The lack of information on vegetation dryness prior to the use of fire as a management tool often leads to a significant deterioration of the savanna ecosystem. This paper therefore evaluated the capacity of SPOT VEGETATION time-series to monitor the vegetation dryness (i.e., vegetation moisture content per vegetation amount) in order to optimize fire risk assessment in the savanna ecosystem of Kruger National Park in South Africa. The integrated Relative Vegetation Index approach (iRVI) to quantify the amount of herbaceous biomass at the end of the rain season and the Accumulated Relative Normalized Difference vegetation index decrement (ARND) related to vegetation moisture content were selected. The iRVI and ARND related to vegetation amount and moisture content, respectively, were combined in order to monitor vegetation dryness and optimize fire risk assessment in the savanna ecosystems. In situ fire activity data was used to evaluate the significance of the iRVI and ARND to monitor vegetation dryness for fire risk assessment. Results from the binary logistic regression analysis confirmed that the assessment of fire risk was optimized by integration of both the vegetation quantity (iRVI) and vegetation moisture content (ARND) as statistically significant explanatory variables. Consequently, the integrated use of both iRVI and ARND to monitor vegetation dryness provides a more suitable tool for fire management and suppression compared to other traditional satellite-based fire risk assessment methods, only related to vegetation moisture content.

  7. Savanna fire and the origins of the 'underground forests' of Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maurin, Olivier; Davies, T Jonathan; Burrows, John E; Daru, Barnabas H; Yessoufou, Kowiyou; Muasya, A Muthama; van der Bank, Michelle; Bond, William J

    2014-10-01

    The origin of fire-adapted lineages is a long-standing question in ecology. Although phylogeny can provide a significant contribution to the ongoing debate, its use has been precluded by the lack of comprehensive DNA data. Here, we focus on the 'underground trees' (=geoxyles) of southern Africa, one of the most distinctive growth forms characteristic of fire-prone savannas. We placed geoxyles within the most comprehensive dated phylogeny for the regional flora comprising over 1400 woody species. Using this phylogeny, we tested whether African geoxyles evolved concomitantly with those of the South American cerrado and used their phylogenetic position to date the appearance of humid savannas. We found multiple independent origins of the geoxyle life-form mostly from the Pliocene, a period consistent with the origin of cerrado, with the majority of divergences occurring within the last 2 million yr. When contrasted with their tree relatives, geoxyles occur in regions characterized by higher rainfall and greater fire frequency. Our results indicate that the geoxylic growth form may have evolved in response to the interactive effects of frequent fires and high precipitation. As such, geoxyles may be regarded as markers of fire-maintained savannas occurring in climates suitable for forests. © 2014 The Authors New Phytologist © 2014 New Phytologist Trust.

  8. Study of the mobilization of pollutants in soils of the Bogota Savanna - phase 1, Heavy Metals

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gonzalez, Luz Myrian; Vargas Zarate, Orlando

    1997-01-01

    In this study the soils contamination of the Bogota Savanna was evaluated by heavy metals, that they have importance to be this the area of population's of the country bigger density, where the use of the soils has suffered changes in the last years that have affected its properties, as consequence of the not controlled growth of the urban area, of the industrialization and of the agricultural use not planned. As a first stage toward the risk evaluation for the presence of metals weighed in the soils of the Bogota Savanna, the concentrations of cadmium, cobalt, chromium, copper, manganese, nickel, lead, zinc, molybdenum, arsenic and mercury were measured. It was also measured the movilizable fraction and the mobile fraction, that is to say, the quantity of metals that can be taken by the roots of the plants or that it can be leached toward the water bodies. Equally, the soils of the Savanna were characterized in an area of the plane part that covers 800 km 2 , as for the physical and chemical properties that can affect the retention and mobilization of heavy metals. The results obtained shows elements, that will allow in a future to develop mobilization and transport models, adapted for our specific conditions and to make an risks evaluation for the population's health, foods consumption on these soils or for the possibility of contamination of the underground waters. The obtained data of levels of heavy metals and other properties of the soils will serve as base for future studies of the conditions of the Savanna soils and for the establishment of standard of quality in our country. During 1997 it plans to enlarge the study area to 1200 km 2 and to begin the sampling and analysis of the soils. In the first phase of the study were found levels of heavy metals that overcome the world averages especially cadmium, cobalt, nickel, lead and zinc and in some cases chromium and mercury, levels that put in evidence the existence an ecological risk and for the population

  9. Precipitation chemistry and wet deposition in a remote wet savanna site in West Africa: Djougou (Benin)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akpo, A. B.; Galy-Lacaux, C.; Laouali, D.; Delon, C.; Liousse, C.; Adon, M.; Gardrat, E.; Mariscal, A.; Darakpa, C.

    2015-08-01

    In the framework of the IDAF (IGAC/DEBITS/AFrica) international program, this study aims to study the chemical composition of precipitation and associated wet deposition at the rural site of Djougou in Benin, representative of a West and Central African wet savanna. Five hundred and thirty rainfall samples were collected at Djougou, Benin, from July 2005 to December 2009 to provide a unique database. The chemical composition of precipitation was analyzed for inorganic (Ca2+, Mg2+, Na+, NH4+, K+, NO3-, Cl-, SO42-) and organic (HCOO-, CH3COO-, C2H5COO-, C2O42-) ions, using ion chromatography. The 530 collected rain events represent a total of 5706.1 mm of rainfall compared to the measured pluviometry 6138.9 mm, indicating that the collection efficiency is about 93%. The order of total annual loading rates for soluble cations is NH4+ > Ca2+ > Mg2+ > K+. For soluble anions the order of loading is carbonates > HCOO- > NO3- > CH3COO- > SO42- > Cl- > C2O42- > C2H5COO-. In the wet savanna of Djougou, 86% of the measured pH values range between 4.7 and 5.7 with a median pH of 5.19, corresponding to a VWM (Volume Weighed Mean) H+ concentration of 6.46 μeq·L-1. This acidity results from a mixture of mineral and organic acids. The annual sea salt contribution was computed for K+, Mg2+, Ca2+ and SO42- and represents 4.2% of K+, 41% of Mg2+, 1.3% of Ca2+, and 7.4% of SO42-. These results show that K+, Ca2+, SO42-, and Mg2+ were mainly of non-marine origin. The marine contribution is estimated at 9%. The results of the chemical composition of rainwater of Djougou indicates that, except for the carbonates, ammonium has the highest VWM concentration (14.3 μeq·L-1) and nitrate concentration is 8.2 μeq·L-1. The distribution of monthly VWM concentration for all ions is computed and shows the highest values during the dry season, comparing to the wet season. Identified nitrogenous compound sources (NOx and NH3) are domestic animals, natural emissions from savanna soils, biomass

  10. Nesting success of grassland and savanna birds on reclaimed surface coal mines of the midwestern United States

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Galligan, E.W.; DeVault, T.L.; Lima, S.L. [Indiana State University, Terre Haute, IN (United States)

    2006-12-15

    Reclaimed surface coal mines in southwestern Indiana support many grassland and shrub/savanna bird species of conservation concern. We examined the nesting success of birds on these reclaimed mines to assess whether such 'unnatural' places represent productive breeding habitats for such species. We established eight study sites on two large, grassland-dominated mines in southwestern Indiana and classified them into three categories (open grassland, shrub/savanna, and a mixture of grassland and shrub/savanna) based on broad vegetation and landscape characteristics. During the 1999 and 2000 breeding seasons, we found and monitored 911 nests of 31 species. Daily nest survival for the most commonly monitored grassland species ranged from 0.903 (Dickcissel, Spiza americana) to 0.961 (Grasshopper Sparrow, Ammodramus savannarum). Daily survival estimates for the dominant shrub/savanna nesting species ranged from 0.932 (Brown Thrasher, Toxostoma rufum) to 0.982 (Willow Flycatcher, Empidonax traillii). Vegetation and landscape effects on nesting success were minimal, and only Eastern Meadowlarks (Sturnella magna) showed a clear time-of-season effect, with greater nesting success in the first half of the breeding season. Rates of Brown-headed Cowbird (Molothrus ater) parasitism were only 2.1% for grassland species and 12.0% for shrub/savanna species. The nesting success of birds on reclaimed mine sites was comparable to that in other habitats, indicating that reclaimed habitats on surface mines do not necessarily represent reproductive traps for birds.

  11. Long-term effects of fire frequency and season on herbaceous vegetation in savannas of the Kruger National Park, South Africa

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Smith, MD

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available in savannas, the experimental burn plots (EBPs), which is located in the Kruger National Park (South Africa) and encompasses four major savanna vegetation types that span broad spatial gradients of rainfall (450–700mm) and soil fertility....

  12. The magnitude and persistence of soil NO, N20, CH4, and C02 fluxes from burned tropical savanna in Brazil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mark Poth; Iris Cofman Anderson; Heloisa Sinatora Miranda; Antonia Carlos Miranda; Philip J. Riggan

    1995-01-01

    Among all global ecosystems, tropical savannas are the most severely and extensively affected by anthropogenic burning. Frequency of fire in cerrado, a type of tropical savanna covering 25% of Brazil, is 2 to 4 years. In 1992 we measured soil fluxes of NO, N20, CH4, and C02 from cerrado sites that had...

  13. Biodiversity effects on ecosystem function due to land use: The case of buffel savannas in the Sky Islands Seas in the central region of Sonora

    Science.gov (United States)

    A. E. Castellanos; H. Celaya; C. Hinojo; A. Ibarra; J. R. Romo

    2013-01-01

    Buffel savannas have been an important landscape on cattle grazing ranches in Sonora over the past 50 years or more. Changes in land use result in biodiversity changes that may produce ecosystem functional changes; however, these are less well documented. Although fire driven processes have been proposed for Buffel savannas, this is not generally the case, and other...

  14. On the suitability of MODIS time series metrics to map vegetation types in dry savanna ecosystems: A case study in the Kalahari of NE Namibia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hüttich, C.; Gessner, U.; Herold, M.; Strohbach, B.; Schmidt, M.; Keil, M.; Dech, S.

    2009-01-01

    The characterization and evaluation of the recent status of biodiversity in Southern Africa’s Savannas is a major prerequisite for suitable and sustainable land management and conservation purposes. This paper presents an integrated concept for vegetation type mapping in a dry savanna ecosystem

  15. Variation in wood anatomy of species with a distribution covering both rain forest and savanna areas of the Ivory Coast, West-Africa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Outer, den R.W.; Veenendaal, van W.L.H.

    1976-01-01

    The variation in wood anatomy within 30 hardwood species, each with a distribution covering both rain forest and savanna areas of the Ivory Coast, Africa, has been studied. Compared to specimens from the rain forest, material from the savanna tends to have more wood ray tissue (rays are higher,

  16. Biome-specific effects of nitrogen and phosphorus on the photosynthetic characteristics of trees at a forest-savanna boundary in Cameroon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Domingues, Tomas Ferreira; Ishida, F Yoko; Feldpausch, Ted R; Grace, John; Meir, Patrick; Saiz, Gustavo; Sene, Olivier; Schrodt, Franziska; Sonké, Bonaventure; Taedoumg, Herman; Veenendaal, Elmar M; Lewis, Simon; Lloyd, Jon

    2015-07-01

    Photosynthesis/nutrient relationships of proximally growing forest and savanna trees were determined in an ecotonal region of Cameroon (Africa). Although area-based foliar N concentrations were typically lower for savanna trees, there was no difference in photosynthetic rates between the two vegetation formation types. Opposite to N, area-based P concentrations were-on average-slightly lower for forest trees; a dependency of photosynthetic characteristics on foliar P was only evident for savanna trees. Thus savanna trees use N more efficiently than their forest counterparts, but only in the presence of relatively high foliar P. Along with some other recent studies, these results suggest that both N and P are important modulators of woody tropical plant photosynthetic capacities, influencing photosynthetic metabolism in different ways that are also biome specific. Attempts to find simple unifying equations to describe woody tropical vegetation photosynthesis-nutrient relationships are likely to meet with failure, with ecophysiological distinctions between forest and savanna requiring acknowledgement.

  17. Origin and dynamics of the northern South American coastal savanna belt during the Holocene - the role of climate, sea-level, fire and humans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alizadeh, Kamaleddin; Cohen, Marcelo; Behling, Hermann

    2015-08-01

    Presence of a coastal savanna belt expanding from British Guiana to northeastern Brazil cannot be explained by present-day climate. Using pollen and charcoal analyses on an 11.6 k old sediment core from a coastal depression in the savanna belt near the mouth of the Amazon River we investigated the paleoenvironmental history to shed light on this question. Results indicate that small areas of savanna accompanied by a forest type composed primarily by the genus Micropholis (Sapotaceae) that has no modern analog existed at the beginning of the Holocene. After 11,200 cal yr BP, savanna accompanied by few trees replaced the forest. In depressions swamp forest developed and by ca 10,000 cal yr BP replaced by Mauritia swamps. Between 8500 and 5600 cal yr BP gallery forest (composed mainly of Euphorbiaceae) and swamp forest succeeded the treeless savanna. The modern vegetation with alternating gallery forest and savanna developed after 5600 cal yr BP. We suggest that the early Holocene no-analog forest is a relict of previously more extensive forest under cooler and moister Lateglacial conditions. The early Holocene savanna expansion indicates a drier phase probably related to the shift of the Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ) towards its northernmost position. The mid-Holocene forest expansion is probably a result of the combined influence of equatorwards shift of ITCZ joining the South Atlantic Convergence Zone (SACZ). The ecosystem variability during the last 5600 cal yr BP, formed perhaps under influence of intensified ENSO condition. High charcoal concentrations, especially during the early Holocene, indicate that natural and/or anthropogenic fires may have maintained the savanna. However, our results propose that climate change is the main driving factor for the formation of the coastal savanna in this region. Our results also show that the early Holocene sea level rise established mangroves near the study site until 7500 cal yr BP and promoted swamp formation in

  18. Preferential Production and Transport of Grass-Derived Pyrogenic Carbon in NE-Australian Savanna Ecosystems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gustavo Saiz

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Understanding the main factors driving fire regimes in grasslands and savannas is critical to better manage their biodiversity and functions. Moreover, improving our knowledge on pyrogenic carbon (PyC dynamics, including formation, transport and deposition, is fundamental to better understand a significant slow-cycling component of the global carbon cycle, particularly as these ecosystems account for a substantial proportion of the area globally burnt. However, a thorough assessment of past fire regimes in grass-dominated ecosystems is problematic due to challenges in interpreting the charcoal record of sediments. It is therefore critical to adopt appropriate sampling and analytical methods to allow the acquisition of reliable data and information on savanna fire dynamics. This study uses hydrogen pyrolysis (HyPy to quantify PyC abundance and stable isotope composition (δ13C in recent sediments across 38 micro-catchments covering a wide range of mixed C3/C4 vegetation in north Queensland, Australia. We exploited the contrasting δ13C values of grasses (i.e., C4; δ13C > −15‰ and woody vegetation (i.e., C3; δ13C < −24‰ to assess the preferential production and transport of grass-derived PyC in savanna ecosystems. Analyses were conducted on bulk and size-fractionated samples to determine the fractions into which PyC preferentially accumulates. Our data show that the δ13C value of PyC in the sediments is decoupled from the δ13C value of total organic carbon, which suggests that a significant component of PyC may be derived from incomplete grass combustion, even when the proportion of C4 grass biomass in the catchment was relatively small. Furthermore, we conducted 16 experimental burns that indicate that there is a comminution of PyC produced in-situ to smaller particles, which facilitates the transport of this material, potentially affecting its preservation potential. Savanna fires preferentially burn the grass understory rather than

  19. Sensitivity of woody carbon stocks to bark investment strategy in Neotropical savannas and forests

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trugman, Anna T.; Medvigy, David; Hoffmann, William A.; Pellegrini, Adam F. A.

    2018-01-01

    Fire frequencies are changing in Neotropical savannas and forests as a result of forest fragmentation and increasing drought. Such changes in fire regime and climate are hypothesized to destabilize tropical carbon storage, but there has been little consideration of the widespread variability in tree fire tolerance strategies. To test how aboveground carbon stocks change with fire frequency and composition of plants with different fire tolerance strategies, we update the Ecosystem Demography model 2 (ED2) with (i) a fire survivorship module based on tree bark thickness (a key fire-tolerance trait across woody plants in savannas and forests), and (ii) plant functional types representative of trees in the region. With these updates, the model is better able to predict how fire frequency affects population demography and aboveground woody carbon. Simulations illustrate that the high survival rate of thick-barked, large trees reduces carbon losses with increasing fire frequency, with high investment in bark being particularly important in reducing losses in the wettest sites. Additionally, in landscapes that frequently burn, bark investment can broaden the range of climate and fire conditions under which savannas occur by reducing the range of conditions leading to either complete tree loss or complete grass loss. These results highlight that tropical vegetation dynamics depend not only on rainfall and changing fire frequencies but also on tree fire survival strategy. Further, our results indicate that fire survival strategy is fundamentally important in regulating tree size demography in ecosystems exposed to fire, which increases the preservation of aboveground carbon stocks and the coexistence of different plant functional groups.

  20. The costs of living at the edge: Seasonal stress in wild savanna-dwelling chimpanzees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wessling, Erin G; Kühl, Hjalmar S; Mundry, Roger; Deschner, Tobias; Pruetz, Jill D

    2018-04-20

    Adaptations associated with shifting from a predominately forested habitat to a more open environment are considered a crucial step in hominin evolution. Understanding how chimpanzees, one of our closest-living relatives, are exposed to the selection pressures associated with living in a relatively sparse, hot, and dry environment can inform us about the relative importance of potential environmental stressors involved in adaptations to drier environments. We investigated the extent to which chimpanzees living in an extreme savanna habitat experience seasonal variability in either energy balance or thermoregulation (dehydration and heat exposure), as well as whether these potential environmental constraints are taxing to chimpanzee individuals. Specifically, we tested the hypothesis that savanna environments impose seasonally-relevant costs to chimpanzees. To this end, we collected 368 urine samples from one community of chimpanzees at Fongoli, Senegal, and measured c-peptide, creatinine, and cortisol as measures of physiological responses to environmental food, water, and heat constraints, respectively. We then evaluated the influence of climatic and phenological factors on these indicators. Results illustrated significant seasonal variation in all biomarkers, which corresponded to relevant ecological correlates. Furthermore, creatinine but not c-peptide correlated with cortisol levels, suggesting that chimpanzees in this environment endure periods of heat and dehydration stress, but are able to avoid stressful levels of negative energy balance. Using savanna chimpanzees as a referential model, our research lends support to the notion that thermoregulatory challenges were a significant factor in hominin evolution, and suggests these challenges may have overshadowed the challenges of maintaining adequate energetic balance during the expansion of the hominin range from wetter to drier environments. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Carbon mapping of Argentine savannas: Using fractional tree cover to scale from field to region

    Science.gov (United States)

    González-Roglich, M.; Swenson, J. J.

    2015-12-01

    Programs which intend to maintain or enhance carbon (C) stocks in natural ecosystems are promising, but require detailed and spatially explicit C distribution models to monitor the effectiveness of management interventions. Savanna ecosystems are significant components of the global C cycle, covering about one fifth of the global land mass, but they have received less attention in C monitoring protocols. Our goal was to estimate C storage across a broad savanna ecosystem using field surveys and freely available satellite images. We first mapped tree canopies at 2.5 m resolution with a spatial subset of high resolution panchromatic images to then predict regional wall-to-wall tree percent cover using 30-m Landsat imagery and the Random Forests algorithms. We found that a model with summer and winter spectral indices from Landsat, climate and topography performed best. Using a linear relationship between C and % tree cover, we then predicted tree C stocks across the gradient of tree cover, explaining 87 % of the variability. The spatially explicit validation of the tree C model with field-measured C-stocks revealed an RMSE of 8.2 tC/ha which represented ~30% of the mean C stock for areas with tree cover, comparable to studies based on more advanced remote sensing methods, such as LiDAR and RADAR. Sample spatial distribution highly affected the performance of the RF models in predicting tree cover, raising concerns regarding the predictive capabilities of the model in areas for which training data is not present. The 50,000 km2 has ~41 Tg C, which could be released to the atmosphere if agricultural pressure intensifies in this semiarid savanna.

  2. Evaporation from cultivated and semi-wild Sudanian Savanna in west Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ceperley, Natalie C.; Mande, Theophile; van de Giesen, Nick; Tyler, Scott; Yacouba, Hamma; Parlange, Marc B.

    2017-08-01

    Rain-fed farming is the primary livelihood of semi-arid west Africa. Changes in land cover have the potential to affect precipitation, the critical resource for production. Turbulent flux measurements from two eddy-covariance towers and additional observations from a dense network of small, wireless meteorological stations combine to relate land cover (savanna forest and agriculture) to evaporation in a small (3.5 km2) catchment in Burkina Faso, west Africa. We observe larger sensible and latent heat fluxes over the savanna forest in the headwater area relative to the agricultural section of the watershed all year. Higher fluxes above the savanna forest are attributed to the greater number of exposed rocks and trees and the higher productivity of the forest compared to rain-fed, hand-farmed agricultural fields. Vegetation cover and soil moisture are found to be primary controls of the evaporative fraction. Satellite-derived vegetation index (NDVI) and soil moisture are determined to be good predictors of evaporative fraction, as indicators of the physical basis of evaporation. Our measurements provide an estimator that can be used to derive evaporative fraction when only NDVI is available. Such large-scale estimates of evaporative fraction from remotely sensed data are valuable where ground-based measurements are lacking, which is the case across the African continent and many other semi-arid areas. Evaporative fraction estimates can be combined, for example, with sensible heat from measurements of temperature variance, to provide an estimate of evaporation when only minimal meteorological measurements are available in remote regions of the world. These findings reinforce local cultural beliefs of the importance of forest fragments for climate regulation and may provide support to local decision makers and rural farmers in the maintenance of the forest areas.

  3. Termites and large herbivores influence seed removal rates in an African savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Acanakwo, Erik Francis; Sheil, Douglas; Moe, Stein R

    2017-12-01

    Seed removal can influence plant community dynamics, composition, and resulting vegetation characteristics. In the African savanna, termites and large herbivores influence vegetation in various ways, likely including indirect effects on seed predators and secondary dispersers. However, the intensity and variation of seed removal rates in African savannas has seldom been studied. We experimentally investigated whether termites and large herbivores were important factors in the mechanisms contributing to observed patterns in tree species composition on and off mounds, in Lake Mburo National Park, Uganda. Within fenced (excluding large herbivores) and unfenced termite mound and adjacent savanna plots, we placed seeds of nine native tree species within small open "cages," accessed by all animals, roofed cages that only allowed access to small vertebrates and invertebrates, and closed cages that permitted access by smaller invertebrates only (5 mm wire mesh). We found that mean seed removal rate was high (up to 87.3% per 3 d). Mound habitats experienced significantly higher removal rates than off-mound habitats. The mean removal rate of native seeds from closed cages was 11.1% per 3 d compared with 19.4% and 23.3% removed per 3 d in the roofed and open cages, respectively. Smaller seeds experienced higher removal rates than larger seeds. Large herbivore exclusion on mounds reduced native seed removal rates by a mean of 8.8% in the open cages, but increased removal rates by 1.7% in the open cages when off-mound habitats were fenced. While removal rates from open cages were higher on active mounds (30.9%) than on inactive mounds (26.7%), the removal rates from closed cages were lower on active vs. inactive mounds (6.1% vs. 11.6%, respectively). Thus, we conclude that large herbivores and Macrotermes mounds influence seed removal rates, though these effects appear indirect. © 2017 by the Ecological Society of America.

  4. Carbon dioxide fluxes from contrasting ecosystems in the Sudanian Savanna in West Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quansah, Emmanuel; Mauder, Matthias; Balogun, Ahmed A; Amekudzi, Leonard K; Hingerl, Luitpold; Bliefernicht, Jan; Kunstmann, Harald

    2015-12-01

    The terrestrial land surface in West Africa is made up of several types of savanna ecosystems differing in land use changes which modulate gas exchanges between their vegetation and the overlying atmosphere. This study compares diurnal and seasonal estimates of CO 2 fluxes from three contrasting ecosystems, a grassland, a mixture of fallow and cropland, and nature reserve in the Sudanian Savanna and relate them to water availability and land use characteristics. Over the study period, and for the three study sites, low soil moisture availability, high vapour pressure deficit and low ecosystem respiration were prevalent during the dry season (November to March), but the contrary occurred during the rainy season (May to October). Carbon uptake predominantly took place in the rainy season, while net carbon efflux occurred in the dry season as well as the dry to wet and wet to dry transition periods (AM and ND) respectively. Carbon uptake decreased in the order of the nature reserve, a mixture of fallow and cropland, and grassland. Only the nature reserve ecosystem at the Nazinga Park served as a net sink of CO 2 , mostly by virtue of a several times larger carbon uptake and ecosystem water use efficiency during the rainy season than at the other sites. These differences were influenced by albedo, LAI, EWUE, PPFD and climatology during the period of study. These results suggest that land use characteristics affect plant physiological processes that lead to flux exchanges over the Sudanian Savanna ecosystems. It affects the diurnal, seasonal and annual changes in NEE and its composite signals, GPP and RE. GPP and NEE were generally related as NEE scaled with photosynthesis with higher CO 2 assimilation leading to higher GPP. However, CO 2 effluxes over the study period suggest that besides biomass regrowth, other processes, most likely from the soil might have also contributed to the enhancement of ecosystem respiration.

  5. The ghosts of trees past: savanna trees create enduring legacies in plant species composition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stahlheber, Karen A; Crispin, Kimberly L; Anton, Cassidy; D'Antonio, Carla M

    2015-09-01

    Isolated trees in savannas worldwide are known to modify their local environment and interact directly with neighboring plants. Less is known about how related tree species differ in their impacts on surrounding communities, how the effects of trees vary between years, and how composition might change following loss of the tree. To address these knowledge gaps, we explored the following questions: How do savanna trees influence the surrounding composition of herbaceous plants? Is the influence of trees consistent across different species and years? How does this change following the death of the tree? We surveyed herbaceous species composition and environmental attributes surrounding living and dead evergreen and deciduous Quercus trees in California (USA) savannas across several years that differed in their total precipitation. Oak trees of all species created distinct, homogenous understory communities dominated by exotic grasses across several sites. The composition of the low-diversity understory communities showed less interannual variation than open grassland, despite a two-fold difference in precipitation between the driest and wettest year. Vegetation composition was correlated with variation in soil properties, which were strongly affected by trees. Oaks also influenced the communities beyond the edge of the crown, but this depended on site and oak species. Low-diversity understory communities persisted up to 43 years following the death of the tree. A gradual decline in the effect of trees on the physical, environment following death did not result in vegetation becoming more similar to open grassland over time. The presence of long-lasting legacies of past tree crowns highlights the difficulty of assigning control of the current distribution of herbaceous species in grassland to their contemporary environment.

  6. Beyond Precipitation: Physiographic Gradients Dictate the Relative Importance of Environmental Drivers on Savanna Vegetation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campo-Bescós, Miguel A.; Muñoz-Carpena, Rafael; Kaplan, David A.; Southworth, Jane; Zhu, Likai; Waylen, Peter R.

    2013-01-01

    Background Understanding the drivers of large-scale vegetation change is critical to managing landscapes and key to predicting how projected climate and land use changes will affect regional vegetation patterns. This study aimed to improve our understanding of the role, magnitude and spatial distribution of the key environmental factors driving vegetation change in southern African savanna, and how they vary across physiographic gradients. Methodology/Principal Findings We applied Dynamic Factor Analysis (DFA), a multivariate times series dimension reduction technique to ten years of monthly remote sensing data (MODIS-derived normalized difference vegetation index, NDVI) and a suite of environmental covariates: precipitation, mean and maximum temperature, soil moisture, relative humidity, fire and potential evapotranspiration. Monthly NDVI was described by cyclic seasonal variation with distinct spatiotemporal patterns in different physiographic regions. Results support existing work emphasizing the importance of precipitation, soil moisture and fire on NDVI, but also reveal overlooked effects of temperature and evapotranspiration, particularly in regions with higher mean annual precipitation. Critically, spatial distributions of the weights of environmental covariates point to a transition in the importance of precipitation and soil moisture (strongest in grass-dominated regions with precipitation950 mm). Conclusions/Significance We quantified the combined spatiotemporal effects of an available suite of environmental drivers on NDVI across a large and diverse savanna region. The analysis supports known drivers of savanna vegetation but also uncovers important roles of temperature and evapotranspiration. Results highlight the utility of applying the DFA approach to remote sensing products for regional analyses of landscape change in the context of global environmental change. With the dramatic increase in global change research, this methodology augurs well for

  7. Preferential production and transport of grass-derived pyrogenic carbon in NE-Australian savanna ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saiz, Gustavo; Goodrick, Iain; Wurster, Christopher; Nelson, Paul N.; Wynn, Jonathan; Bird, Michael

    2017-12-01

    Understanding the main factors driving fire regimes in grasslands and savannas is critical to better manage their biodiversity and functions. Moreover, improving our knowledge on pyrogenic carbon (PyC) dynamics, including formation, transport and deposition, is fundamental to better understand a significant slow-cycling component of the global carbon cycle, particularly as these ecosystems account for a substantial proportion of the area globally burnt. However, a thorough assessment of past fire regimes in grass-dominated ecosystems is problematic due to challenges in interpreting the charcoal record of sediments. It is therefore critical to adopt appropriate sampling and analytical methods to allow the acquisition of reliable data and information on savanna fire dynamics. This study uses hydrogen pyrolysis (HyPy) to quantify PyC abundance and stable isotope composition (δ13C) in recent sediments across 38 micro-catchments covering a wide range of mixed C3/C4 vegetation in north Queensland, Australia. We exploited the contrasting δ13C values of grasses (i.e. C4; δ13C >-15‰) and woody vegetation (i.e. C3; δ13C <-24‰) to assess the preferential production and transport of grass-derived PyC in savanna ecosystems. Analyses were conducted on bulk and size-fractionated samples to determine the fractions into which PyC preferentially accumulates. Our data show that the δ13C value of PyC in the sediments is decoupled from the δ13C value of total organic carbon, which suggests that a significant component of PyC may be derived from incomplete grass combustion, even when the proportion of C4 grass biomass in the catchment was relatively small. Furthermore, we conducted 16 experimental burns that indicate that there is a comminution of PyC produced in-situ to smaller particles, which facilitates the transport of this material, potentially affecting its preservation potential. Savanna fires preferentially burn the grass understory rather than large trees, leading to

  8. Rainfall and topo-edaphic influences on woody community phenology in South African savannas

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Shackleton, CM

    1999-03-01

    Full Text Available the limiting periods, i.e. at Stockholm. the start and cessation of the rainy season. This was Fatubarin, A. (1985) Observations on the phenology of not reflected in the data presented here with respect to the woody plants and grasses in a savanna ecosystem... of temperature on evaporative demand (Bate, Furniss & Pendle, 1982).∗ Current address: Environmentek, CSIR, P.O. Box At a gross scale, annual rainfall is a coarse index of395, Pretoria 0001, South Africa. e-mail: csh- ackle@csir.co.za. seasonal plant available...

  9. Vulnerability of native savanna trees and exotic Khaya senegalensis to seasonal drought.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arndt, Stefan K; Sanders, Gregor J; Bristow, Mila; Hutley, Lindsay B; Beringer, Jason; Livesley, Stephen J

    2015-07-01

    Seasonally dry ecosystems present a challenge to plants to maintain water relations. While native vegetation in seasonally dry ecosystems have evolved specific adaptations to the long dry season, there are risks to introduced exotic species. African mahogany, Khaya senegalensis Desr. (A. Juss.), is an exotic plantation species that has been introduced widely in Asia and northern Australia, but it is unknown if it has the physiological or phenotypic plasticity to cope with the strongly seasonal patterns of water availability in the tropical savanna climate of northern Australia. We investigated the gas exchange and water relations traits and adjustments to seasonal drought in K. senegalensis and native eucalypts (Eucalyptus tetrodonta F. Muell. and Corymbia latifolia F. Muell.) in a savanna ecosystem in northern Australia. The native eucalypts did not exhibit any signs of drought stress after 3 months of no rainfall and probably had access to deeper soil moisture late into the dry season. Leaf water potential, stomatal conductance, transpiration and photosynthesis all remained high in the dry season but osmotic adjustment was not observed. Overstorey leaf area index (LAI) was 0.6 in the native eucalypt savanna and did not change between wet and dry seasons. In contrast, the K. senegalensis plantation in the wet season was characterized by a high water potential, high stomatal conductance and transpiration and a high LAI of 2.4. In the dry season, K. senegalensis experienced mild drought stress with a predawn water potential -0.6 MPa. Overstorey LAI was halved, and stomatal conductance and transpiration drastically reduced, while minimum leaf water potentials did not change (-2 MPa) and no osmotic adjustment occurred. Khaya senegalensis exhibited an isohydric behaviour and also had a lower hydraulic vulnerability to cavitation in leaves, with a P50 of -2.3 MPa. The native eucalypts had twice the maximum leaf hydraulic conductance but a much higher P50 of -1.5 MPa

  10. Assessment of bird populations in a high quality savanna/woodland: a banding approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilmore, Sandra L.; Glowacki, Gary A.; Grundel, Ralph

    2005-01-01

    Between 1999 and 2004, Save the Dunes Conservation Fund's Miller Woods Bird Banding Program monitored migrating and breeding bird populations within a high quality black oak, dry-mesic sand savanna/woodland with ridge and swale topography. The objectives of this program were to collect consistent and reliable demographic and abundance data on the bird populations, to investigate long-term population trends, and to contribute to improved land management decisions at regional and national scales. The technique employed involved capturing birds in mist nets that were deployed for set periods of time at 17 net sites in two banding areas in Miller Woods.

  11. World climate patterns in grassland and savanna and their relation to growing seasons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Kirk Steinhorst

    1977-11-01

    Full Text Available The climate at eleven IBP savanna or grassland study sites from five continents are described and principal components analysis is used to compare them. A multivariate linear discriminant function based on mean monthly precipitation, mean monthly temperature, latitude and altitude, is used to predict the length of the growing season at each site. At most sites, the actual and predicted start and end of the growing season agreed closely. It is concluded that growing season on a world-wide basis may be predicted fairly reliably from a small number of abiotic variables by means of a multivariate discriminant function.

  12. Satellite observations for describing fire patterns and climate-related fire drivers in the Brazilian savannas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verola Mataveli, Guilherme Augusto; Siqueira Silva, Maria Elisa; Pereira, Gabriel; da Silva Cardozo, Francielle; Shinji Kawakubo, Fernando; Bertani, Gabriel; Cezar Costa, Julio; de Cássia Ramos, Raquel; Valéria da Silva, Viviane

    2018-01-01

    In the Brazilian savannas (Cerrado biome) fires are natural and a tool for shifting land use; therefore, temporal and spatial patterns result from the interaction of climate, vegetation condition and human activities. Moreover, orbital sensors are the most effective approach to establish patterns in the biome. We aimed to characterize fire, precipitation and vegetation condition regimes and to establish spatial patterns of fire occurrence and their correlation with precipitation and vegetation condition in the Cerrado. The Cerrado was first and second biome for the occurrence of burned areas (BA) and hotspots, respectively. Occurrences are higher during the dry season and in the savanna land use. Hotspots and BA tend to decrease, and concentrate in the north, but more intense hotspots are not necessarily located where concentration is higher. Spatial analysis showed that averaged and summed values can hide patterns, such as for precipitation, which has the lowest average in August, but minimum precipitation in August was found in 7 % of the Cerrado. Usually, there is a 2-3-month lag between minimum precipitation and maximum hotspots and BA, while minimum VCI and maximum hotspots and BA occur in the same month. Hotspots and BA are better correlated with VCI than precipitation, qualifying VCI as an indicator of the susceptibility of vegetation to ignition.

  13. Genomic DNA sequences from mastodon and woolly mammoth reveal deep speciation of forest and savanna elephants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nadin Rohland

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available To elucidate the history of living and extinct elephantids, we generated 39,763 bp of aligned nuclear DNA sequence across 375 loci for African savanna elephant, African forest elephant, Asian elephant, the extinct American mastodon, and the woolly mammoth. Our data establish that the Asian elephant is the closest living relative of the extinct mammoth in the nuclear genome, extending previous findings from mitochondrial DNA analyses. We also find that savanna and forest elephants, which some have argued are the same species, are as or more divergent in the nuclear genome as mammoths and Asian elephants, which are considered to be distinct genera, thus resolving a long-standing debate about the appropriate taxonomic classification of the African elephants. Finally, we document a much larger effective population size in forest elephants compared with the other elephantid taxa, likely reflecting species differences in ancient geographic structure and range and differences in life history traits such as variance in male reproductive success.

  14. Temperature fluctuations inside savanna termite mounds: Do size and plant shade matter?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ndlovu, M; Pérez-Rodríguez, A

    2018-05-01

    Mound building termites are key ecosystem engineers of subtropical savanna regions. Mounds allow termites to maintain suitable conditions for termite reproduction and food cultivation ('fungus gardens'). We studied how the internal mound temperature of Macrotermes natalensis, a dominant mound-building termite of the subtropical savanna of southern Africa, responds to a number of environmental variables. We used general additive mixed models (GAMM) to determine how external temperature, mound size (volume) and the amount of vegetation shade affects mound internal temperature over a 24-h period. Internal mound temperature varied daily following changes of the external temperature, although the range of variation was much smaller. Active termite mounds maintained a higher internal temperature than inactive ones, and mound activity reinforced the positive effect of mound size and moderated the negative effect of vegetation shade on internal temperatures. In turn, external temperature fluctuations equally affected active and inactive mounds. Large mounds maintained near optimal internal temperatures compared to smaller sized mounds. We therefore conclude that termite mound size is a stronger determinant of internal mound temperature stability compared to plant shade cover. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Burned area detection based on Landsat time series in savannas of southern Burkina Faso

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Jinxiu; Heiskanen, Janne; Maeda, Eduardo Eiji; Pellikka, Petri K. E.

    2018-02-01

    West African savannas are subject to regular fires, which have impacts on vegetation structure, biodiversity and carbon balance. An efficient and accurate mapping of burned area associated with seasonal fires can greatly benefit decision making in land management. Since coarse resolution burned area products cannot meet the accuracy needed for fire management and climate modelling at local scales, the medium resolution Landsat data is a promising alternative for local scale studies. In this study, we developed an algorithm for continuous monitoring of annual burned areas using Landsat time series. The algorithm is based on burned pixel detection using harmonic model fitting with Landsat time series and breakpoint identification in the time series data. This approach was tested in a savanna area in southern Burkina Faso using 281 images acquired between October 2000 and April 2016. An overall accuracy of 79.2% was obtained with balanced omission and commission errors. This represents a significant improvement in comparison with MODIS burned area product (67.6%), which had more omission errors than commission errors, indicating underestimation of the total burned area. By observing the spatial distribution of burned areas, we found that the Landsat based method misclassified cropland and cloud shadows as burned areas due to the similar spectral response, and MODIS burned area product omitted small and fragmented burned areas. The proposed algorithm is flexible and robust against decreased data availability caused by clouds and Landsat 7 missing lines, therefore having a high potential for being applied in other landscapes in future studies.

  16. Age-related tooth wear differs between forest and savanna primates.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jordi Galbany

    Full Text Available Tooth wear in primates is caused by aging and ecological factors. However, comparative data that would allow us to delineate the contribution of each of these factors are lacking. Here, we contrast age-dependent molar tooth wear by scoring percent of dentine exposure (PDE in two wild African primate populations from Gabonese forest and Kenyan savanna habitats. We found that forest-dwelling mandrills exhibited significantly higher PDE with age than savanna yellow baboons. Mandrills mainly feed on large tough food items, such as hard-shell fruits, and inhabit an ecosystem with a high presence of mineral quartz. By contrast, baboons consume large amounts of exogenous grit that adheres to underground storage organs but the proportion of quartz in the soils where baboons live is low. Our results support the hypothesis that not only age but also physical food properties and soil composition, particularly quartz richness, are factors that significantly impact tooth wear. We further propose that the accelerated dental wear in mandrills resulting in flatter molars with old age may represent an adaptation to process hard food items present in their environment.

  17. Insect-plant interactions: new pathways to a better comprehension of ecological communities in Neotropical savannas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Del-Claro, Kleber; Torezan-Silingardi, Helena M

    2009-01-01

    The causal mechanisms shaping and structuring ecological communities are among the most important themes in ecology. The study of insect-plant interactions in trophic nets is pointed out as basic to improve our knowledge on this issue. The cerrado tropical savanna, although extremely diverse, distributed in more than 20% of the Brazilian territory and filled up with rich examples of multitrophic interactions, is underexplored in terms of biodiversity interaction. Here, this ecosystem is suggested as valuable to the study of insect-plant interactions whose understanding can throw a new light at the ecological communities' theory. Three distinct systems: extrafloral nectary plants or trophobiont herbivores and the associated ant fauna; floral herbivores-predators-pollinators; and plants-forest engineers and associated fauna, will serve as examples to illustrate promising new pathways in cerrado. The aim of this brief text is to instigate young researchers, mainly entomologists, to initiate more elaborated field work, including experimental manipulations in multitrophic systems, to explore in an interactive way the structure that maintain preserved viable communities in the Neotropical savanna.

  18. Functional Connectivity of Precipitation Networks in the Brazilian Rainforest-Savanna Transition Zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adera, S.; Larsen, L.; Levy, M. C.; Thompson, S. E.

    2016-12-01

    In the Brazilian rainforest-savanna transition zone, vegetation change has the potential to significantly affect precipitation patterns. Deforestation, in particular, can affect precipitation patterns by increasing land surface albedo, increasing aerosol loading to the atmosphere, changing land surface roughness, and reducing transpiration. Understanding land surface-precipitation couplings in this region is important not only for sustaining Amazon and Cerrado ecosystems, but also for cattle ranching and agriculture, hydropower generation, and drinking water management. Simulations suggest complex, scale-dependent interactions between precipitation and land cover. For example, the size and distribution of deforested patches has been found to affect precipitation patterns. We take an empirical approach to ask: (1) what are the dominant spatial and temporal length scales of precipitation coupling in the Brazilian rainforest-savanna transition zone? (2) How do these length scales change over time? (3) How does the connectivity of precipitation change over time? The answers to these questions will help address fundamental questions about the impacts of deforestation on precipitation. We use rain gauge data from 1100 rain gauges intermittently covering the period 1980 - 2013, a period of intensive land cover change in the region. The dominant spatial and temporal length scales of precipitation coupling are resolved using transfer entropy, a metric from information theory. Connectivity of the emergent network of couplings is quantified using network statistics. Analyses using transfer entropy and network statistics reveal the spatial and temporal interdependencies of rainfall events occurring in different parts of the study domain.

  19. Spatial Distribution of Aboveground Carbon Stock of the Arboreal Vegetation in Brazilian Biomes of Savanna, Atlantic Forest and Semi-Arid Woodland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scolforo, Henrique Ferraco; Scolforo, Jose Roberto Soares; Mello, Carlos Rogerio; Mello, Jose Marcio; Ferraz Filho, Antonio Carlos

    2015-01-01

    The objective of this study was to map the spatial distribution of aboveground carbon stock (using Regression-kriging) of arboreal plants in the Atlantic Forest, Semi-arid woodland, and Savanna Biomes in Minas Gerais State, southeastern Brazil. The database used in this study was obtained from 163 forest fragments, totaling 4,146 plots of 1,000 m2 distributed in these Biomes. A geographical model for carbon stock estimation was parameterized as a function of Biome, latitude and altitude. This model was applied over the samples and the residuals generated were mapped based on geostatistical procedures, selecting the exponential semivariogram theoretical model for conducting ordinary Kriging. The aboveground carbon stock was found to have a greater concentration in the north of the State, where the largest contingent of native vegetation is located, mainly the Savanna Biome, with Wooded Savanna and Shrub Savanna phytophysiognomes. The largest weighted averages of carbon stock per hectare were found in the south-center region (48.6 Mg/ha) and in the southern part of the eastern region (48.4 Mg/ha) of Minas Gerais State, due to the greatest predominance of Atlantic Forest Biome forest fragments. The smallest weighted averages per hectare were found in the central (21.2 Mg/ha), northern (20.4 Mg/ha), and northwestern (20.7 Mg/ha) regions of Minas Gerais State, where Savanna Biome fragments are predominant, in the phytophysiognomes Wooded Savanna and Shrub Savanna.

  20. Effects of repeated burning on woody vegetation structure and composition in a semi-arid southern African savanna

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gandiwa, E.

    2011-01-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of repeated dry season annual hot fires on woody plants in a semiarid southern African savanna in Zimbabwe. Parts of the National University of Science and Technology (NUST) research fields in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe have been burnt annually in

  1. Rapid Assessment of Key Structural Elements of Different Vegetation Types of West African Savannas in Burkina Faso

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qasim Mohammad

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Estimations of Leaf Area Index (LAI have recently gained attention due to the sensitivity to the effects of climate change and its impact on forest ecosystems. Hence, a study was conducted on the LAI estimation of four vegetation types: (i gallery forests, (ii woodland savannas, (iii tree savannas, and (iv shrub savannas, at two protected areas of Nazinga Game Ranch and Bontioli Nature Reserve, Burkina Faso. A relationship between LAI and Crown Diameter was also investigated at these two sites. Digital hemispherical photography was used for the LAI estimation. Crown diameters (CD were determined perpendicular to each other and averaged for each tree and shrub. Overall results revealed that LAI ranged from 0-1.33 and the CD was recorded in the range of 0.46-11.01 m. The gallery forests recorded the highest mean LAI 1.33 ± 0.32 as well as the highest mean CD 7.69 ± 1.90 m. The LAI for the vegetation types were at their lower ends as the study was conducted in summer season, higher values are therefore expected in the wet season, as a significant correlation between LAI and precipitation has been emphasized by various studies. Continuous LAI monitoring and studies on various growth parameters of different vegetation types at the study sites are recommended towards enhanced monitoring and an ecologically feasible forest- and savanna-use and management to maintain essential ecosystem functions and services.

  2. Functional traits of trees on and off termite mounds : Understanding the origin of biotically-driven heterogeneity in savannas

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Plas, F.; Howison, R.; Reinders, J.; Fokkema, W.; Olff, H.

    Questions In African savannas, Macrotermes termites contribute to small-scale heterogeneity by constructing large mounds. Operating as islands of high nutrient and water availability and low fire frequency, these mounds support distinct, diverse communities of trees that have been shown to be highly

  3. Habitat differences in dung beetle assemblages in an African savanna-forest ecotone: implications for secondary seed dispersal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kunz, Britta K; Krell, Frank-Thorsten

    2011-06-01

    The probability and pattern of secondary seed dispersal by dung beetles (Scarabaeinae) depend on their community structure and composition at the site of primary deposition, which, in turn, seem to be strongly determined by vegetation. Consequently, we expected pronounced differences in secondary seed dispersal between forest and savanna in the northern Ivory Coast, West Africa. We found 99 dung beetle species at experimentally exposed dung piles of the olive baboon (Papio anubis (Lesson, 1827)), an important primary seed disperser in West Africa. Seventy-six species belonged to the roller and tunneler guilds, which are relevant for secondary seed dispersal. Most species showed a clear habitat preference. Contrary to the Neotropics, species number and abundance were much higher in the savanna than in the forest. Rollers and tunnelers each accounted for approximately 50% of the individuals in the savanna, but in the forest rollers made up only 4%. Seeds deposited into the savanna by an omnivorous primary disperser generally have a higher overall probability of being more rapidly dispersed secondarily by dung beetles than seeds in the forest. Also, rollers disperse seeds over larger distances. In contrast to other studies, small rollers were active in dispersal of large seeds, which were seemingly mistaken for dung balls. Our results suggest that rollers can remove seeds from any plant dispersed in primate dung in this ecosystem. © 2011 ISZS, Blackwell Publishing and IOZ/CAS.

  4. Relationships between bat occupancy and habitat and landscape structure along a savanna, woodland, forest gradient in the Missouri Ozarks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarissa A. Starbuck; Sybill K. Amelon; Frank R. III. Thompson

    2015-01-01

    Many land-management agencies are restoring savannas and woodlands using prescribed fire and forest thinning, and information is needed on how wildlife species respond to these management activities. Our objectives were to evaluate support for relationships of bat site occupancy with vegetation structure and management and landscape composition and structure across a...

  5. Quantifying the relative importance of greenhouse gas emissions from current and future savanna land use change across northern Australia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Bristow

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available The clearing and burning of tropical savanna leads to globally significant emissions of greenhouse gases (GHGs; however there is large uncertainty relating to the magnitude of this flux. Australia's tropical savannas occupy the northern quarter of the continent, a region of increasing interest for further exploitation of land and water resources. Land use decisions across this vast biome have the potential to influence the national greenhouse gas budget. To better quantify emissions from savanna deforestation and investigate the impact of deforestation on national GHG emissions, we undertook a paired site measurement campaign where emissions were quantified from two tropical savanna woodland sites; one that was deforested and prepared for agricultural land use and a second analogue site that remained uncleared for the duration of a 22-month campaign. At both sites, net ecosystem exchange of CO2 was measured using the eddy covariance method. Observations at the deforested site were continuous before, during and after the clearing event, providing high-resolution data that tracked CO2 emissions through nine phases of land use change. At the deforested site, post-clearing debris was allowed to cure for 6 months and was subsequently burnt, followed by extensive soil preparation for cropping. During the debris burning, fluxes of CO2 as measured by the eddy covariance tower were excluded. For this phase, emissions were estimated by quantifying on-site biomass prior to deforestation and applying savanna-specific emission factors to estimate a fire-derived GHG emission that included both CO2 and non-CO2 gases. The total fuel mass that was consumed during the debris burning was 40.9 Mg C ha−1 and included above- and below-ground woody biomass, course woody debris, twigs, leaf litter and C4 grass fuels. Emissions from the burning were added to the net CO2 fluxes as measured by the eddy covariance tower for other post-deforestation phases to

  6. History of fire and Douglas-fir establishment in a savanna and sagebrush-grassland mosaic, southwestern Montana, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Emily K. Heyerdahl; Richard F. Miller; Russell A. Parsons

    2006-01-01

    Over the past century, trees have encroached into grass- and shrublands across western North America. These include Douglas-fir trees (Pseudotsuga menziesii (Mirb.) Franco var. glauca (Beissn.) Franco) encroaching into mountain big sagebrush Nutt. ssp. vaseyana (Rydb.) Beetle) from stable islands of savanna in...

  7. Biomass and leaf-level gas exchange characteristics of three African savanna C4 grass species under optimum growth conditions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mantlana, K.B.; Veenendaal, E.M.; Arneth, A.; Grispen, V.; Bonyongo, C.M.; Heitkönig, I.M.A.; Lloyd, J.

    2009-01-01

    C4 savanna grass species, Digitaria eriantha, Eragrostis lehmanniana and Panicum repens, were grown under optimum growth conditions with the aim of characterizing their above- and below-ground biomass allocation and the response of their gas exchange to changes in light intensity, CO2 concentration

  8. Opposing resonses to ecological gradients structure amphibian and reptile communities across a temperate grassland-savanna-forest landscape

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grundel, Ralph; Beamer, David; Glowacki, Gary A.; Frohnapple, Krystal; Pavlovic, Noel B.

    2014-01-01

    Temperate savannas are threatened across the globe. If we prioritize savanna restoration, we should ask how savanna animal communities differ from communities in related open habitats and forests. We documented distribution of amphibian and reptile species across an open-savanna–forest gradient in the Midwest U.S. to determine how fire history and habitat structure affected herpetofaunal community composition. The transition from open habitats to forests was a transition from higher reptile abundance to higher amphibian abundance and the intermediate savanna landscape supported the most species overall. These differences warn against assuming that amphibian and reptile communities will have similar ecological responses to habitat structure. Richness and abundance also often responded in opposite directions to some habitat characteristics, such as cover of bare ground or litter. Herpetofaunal community species composition changed along a fire gradient from infrequent and recent fires to frequent but less recent fires. Nearby (200-m) wetland cover was relatively unimportant in predicting overall herpetofaunal community composition while fire history and fire-related canopy and ground cover were more important predictors of composition, diversity, and abundance. Increased developed cover was negatively related to richness and abundance. This indicates the importance of fire history and fire related landscape characteristics, and the negative effects of development, in shaping the upland herpetofaunal community along the native grassland–forest continuum.

  9. An idealized model for tree-grass coexistence in savannas : The role of life stage structure and fire disturbances

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Baudena, Mara|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/340303867; D'Andrea, Fabio; Provenzale, A.

    2010-01-01

    1. We discuss a simple implicit-space model for the competition of trees and grasses in an idealized savanna environment. The model represents patch occupancy dynamics within the habitat and introduces life stage structure in the tree population, namely adults and seedlings. A tree can be

  10. Tree-grass interactions on an East African savanna : the effects of facilitation, competition, and hydraulic lift

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ludwig, F.

    2001-01-01

    Keywords: Rangelands, Semi-arid areas, stable isotopes, Acacia, C 4- grasses, plant nutrients, soil nutrients, soil water, plant water relations

    Savanna trees can either increase or decrease the productivity of understorey grasses. Trees reduce grass

  11. BRS 369RF and BRS 370RF: Glyphosate tolerant, high-yielding upland cotton cultivars for central Brazilian savanna

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Camilo de Lelis Morello

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available BRS 369RF and BRS 370RF were developed by the EMBRAPA as a part of efforts to create high-yielding germplasm with combinations of transgenic traits. BRS 369RF and BRS 370RF are midseason cultivars and have yield stability, adaptation to the central Brazilian savanna, good fiber quality and tolerance to glyphosate herbicide.

  12. Quantifying the relative importance of greenhouse gas emissions from current and future savanna land use change across northern Australia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bristow, Mila; Hutley, Lindsay B.; Beringer, Jason; Livesley, Stephen J.; Edwards, Andrew C.; Arndt, Stefan K.

    2016-11-01

    The clearing and burning of tropical savanna leads to globally significant emissions of greenhouse gases (GHGs); however there is large uncertainty relating to the magnitude of this flux. Australia's tropical savannas occupy the northern quarter of the continent, a region of increasing interest for further exploitation of land and water resources. Land use decisions across this vast biome have the potential to influence the national greenhouse gas budget. To better quantify emissions from savanna deforestation and investigate the impact of deforestation on national GHG emissions, we undertook a paired site measurement campaign where emissions were quantified from two tropical savanna woodland sites; one that was deforested and prepared for agricultural land use and a second analogue site that remained uncleared for the duration of a 22-month campaign. At both sites, net ecosystem exchange of CO2 was measured using the eddy covariance method. Observations at the deforested site were continuous before, during and after the clearing event, providing high-resolution data that tracked CO2 emissions through nine phases of land use change. At the deforested site, post-clearing debris was allowed to cure for 6 months and was subsequently burnt, followed by extensive soil preparation for cropping. During the debris burning, fluxes of CO2 as measured by the eddy covariance tower were excluded. For this phase, emissions were estimated by quantifying on-site biomass prior to deforestation and applying savanna-specific emission factors to estimate a fire-derived GHG emission that included both CO2 and non-CO2 gases. The total fuel mass that was consumed during the debris burning was 40.9 Mg C ha-1 and included above- and below-ground woody biomass, course woody debris, twigs, leaf litter and C4 grass fuels. Emissions from the burning were added to the net CO2 fluxes as measured by the eddy covariance tower for other post-deforestation phases to provide a total GHG emission from

  13. Analysis of the herbaceous undergrowth of the woody savanna in the Fathala reserve, Delta du Saloum National park (Senegal)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hejcmanová, P.; Hejcman, M.; Camara, A. A.; Antonínová, M.; Pavlů, V.; Černý, Tomáš; Ba, A. T.

    2006-01-01

    Roč. 138, č. 2 (2006), s. 119-228 ISSN 0778-4031 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR IAA6093404 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : vegetation analysis * herb layer * woody savanna Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 0.208, year: 2006

  14. Eddy covariance and biometric measurements show that a savanna ecosystem in Southwest China is a carbon sink

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fei, Xuehai; Jin, Yanqiang; Zhang, Yiping; Sha, Liqing; Liu, Yuntong; Song, Qinghai; Zhou, Wenjun; Liang, Naishen; Yu, Guirui; Zhang, Leiming; Zhou, Ruiwu; Li, Jing; Zhang, Shubin; Li, Peiguang

    2017-02-01

    Savanna ecosystems play a crucial role in the global carbon cycle. However, there is a gap in our understanding of carbon fluxes in the savanna ecosystems of Southeast Asia. In this study, the eddy covariance technique (EC) and the biometric-based method (BM) were used to determine carbon exchange in a savanna ecosystem in Southwest China. The BM-based net ecosystem production (NEP) was 0.96 tC ha-1 yr-1. The EC-based estimates of the average annual gross primary productivity (GPP), ecosystem respiration (Reco), and net ecosystem carbon exchange (NEE) were 6.84, 5.54, and -1.30 tC ha-1 yr-1, respectively, from May 2013 to December 2015, indicating that this savanna ecosystem acted as an appreciable carbon sink. The ecosystem was more efficient during the wet season than the dry season, so that it represented a small carbon sink of 0.16 tC ha-1 yr-1 in the dry season and a considerable carbon sink of 1.14 tC ha-1 yr-1 in the wet season. However, it is noteworthy that the carbon sink capacity may decline in the future under rising temperatures and decreasing rainfall. Consequently, further studies should assess how environmental factors and climate change will influence carbon-water fluxes.

  15. Eddy covariance and biometric measurements show that a savanna ecosystem in Southwest China is a carbon sink

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fei, Xuehai; Jin, Yanqiang; Zhang, Yiping; Sha, Liqing; Liu, Yuntong; Song, Qinghai; Zhou, Wenjun; Liang, Naishen; Yu, Guirui; Zhang, Leiming; Zhou, Ruiwu; Li, Jing; Zhang, Shubin; Li, Peiguang

    2017-01-01

    Savanna ecosystems play a crucial role in the global carbon cycle. However, there is a gap in our understanding of carbon fluxes in the savanna ecosystems of Southeast Asia. In this study, the eddy covariance technique (EC) and the biometric-based method (BM) were used to determine carbon exchange in a savanna ecosystem in Southwest China. The BM-based net ecosystem production (NEP) was 0.96 tC ha−1 yr−1. The EC-based estimates of the average annual gross primary productivity (GPP), ecosystem respiration (Reco), and net ecosystem carbon exchange (NEE) were 6.84, 5.54, and −1.30 tC ha−1 yr−1, respectively, from May 2013 to December 2015, indicating that this savanna ecosystem acted as an appreciable carbon sink. The ecosystem was more efficient during the wet season than the dry season, so that it represented a small carbon sink of 0.16 tC ha−1 yr−1 in the dry season and a considerable carbon sink of 1.14 tC ha−1 yr−1 in the wet season. However, it is noteworthy that the carbon sink capacity may decline in the future under rising temperatures and decreasing rainfall. Consequently, further studies should assess how environmental factors and climate change will influence carbon-water fluxes. PMID:28145459

  16. Fire Frequency and Vegetation Composition Influence Soil Nitrogen Cycling and Base Cations in an Oak Savanna Ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    McLauchlan, K. K.; Nelson, D. M.; Perakis, S.; Marcotte, A. L.

    2017-12-01

    Fire frequency is crucial for maintaining savannas in the transition between forests and grasslands. In general, increasing fire frequency has two effects: it increases herbaceous plant cover more than woody plant cover, and it lowers soil organic matter stocks. These effects have been demonstrated at a long-term prescribed fire experiment in an oak savanna ecosystem at Cedar Creek Ecosystem Science Reserve, Minnesota, U.S.A. The fire experiment began in 1964 and oak savannas are burned at various frequencies ranging from every year to not at all. This has led to changes in vegetation ranging from almost 100% grassland to 100% oak forest. Additionally, nitrogen stocks almost doubled in the sites that were not burned, as it accumulated in the trees, leaf litter, and soil. We addressed additional soil changes taking place at this experiment by asking the question: How have fire and oak-grass balance affected soil nutrients, specifically nitrogen and base cations? Surface soils were collected from 12 plots on the oak savanna burn experiment. Soils were collected in increments to 100 cm depth, from under grass-dominated vegetation and from under tree-dominated vegetation. We non-destructively estimated soil base cations by measuring elemental concentrations of dried soil subsamples with a handheld x-ray fluorescence analyzer. We also measured carbon and nitrogen concentrations and isotopic composition of the soil samples. Soils in plots with high fire frequency had higher concentrations of calcium than soils in unburned plots (low fire frequency). Similar trends were seen for soil potassium, magnesium, and phosphorus concentrations. In contrast, soils in plots with high fire frequency had dramatically lowered nitrogen cycling rates and stocks across the oak savanna. The contrast between the responses of different nutrients to changing fire frequency has important implications for the consequences of fire and tree-grass composition on nutrient cycling dynamics.

  17. Implication of Forest-Savanna Dynamics on Biomass and Carbon Stock: Effectiveness of an Amazonian Ecological Station

    Science.gov (United States)

    Couto-Santos, F. R.; Luizao, F. J.

    2014-12-01

    The forests-savanna advancement/retraction process seems to play an important role in the global carbon cycle and in the climate-vegetation balance maintenance in the Amazon. To contribute with long term carbon dynamics and assess effectiveness of a protected area in reduce carbon emissions in Brazilian Amazon transitional areas, variations in forest-savanna mosaics biomass and carbon stock within Maraca Ecological Station (MES), Roraima/Brazil, and its outskirts non-protected areas were compared. Composite surface soil samples and indirect methods based on regression models were used to estimate aboveground tree biomass accumulation and assess vegetation and soil carbon stock along eleven 0.6 ha transects perpendicular to the forest-savanna limits. Aboveground biomass and carbon accumulation were influenced by vegetation structure, showing higher values within protected area, with great contribution of trees above 40 cm in diameter. In the savanna environments of protected areas, a higher tree density and carbon stock up to 30 m from the border confirmed a forest encroachment. This pointed that MES acts as carbon sink, even under variations in soil fertility gradient, with a potential increase of the total carbon stock from 9 to 150 Mg C ha-1. Under 20 years of fire and disturbance management, the results indicated the effectiveness of this protected area to reduce carbon emissions and mitigate greenhouse and climate change effects in a forest-savanna transitional area in Brazilian Northern Amazon. The contribution of this study in understanding rates and reasons for biomass and carbon variation, under different management strategies, should be considered the first approximation to assist policies of reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD) from underresearched Amazonian ecotone; despite further efforts in this direction are still needed. FINANCIAL SUPPORT: Boticário Group Foundation (Fundação Grupo Boticário); National Council for

  18. Where Does The Carbon Go? Carbon Dynamics And Fire of a North Australian Tropical Savanna

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hutley, L. B.; Beringer, J.; Tapper, N. J.; Cernusak, L.

    2007-12-01

    The role of fire as one of the primary natural carbon cycling mechanisms is a key issue in considering global change feedbacks. In north Australia, the dominant ecosystem is tropical savanna and for mesic savannas within 100 km of the northern coastline, fire, storms and cyclones all impact carbon stocks. Fire is the most frequent disturbance agent as fires burn with a near annual frequency in these systems. We aimed to determine the annual net ecosystem productivity (NEP) from these savannas and the impact of fire on productivity. We established a long-term eddy covariance flux tower at Howard Springs, Australia and present here 5 years of data from 2001 to 2005. Fire has direct impacts through emissions but also has indirect effects through the loss of productivity due to reduced functional leaf area index and the carbon costs of rebuilding the canopy. The impact of fire on the canopy latent energy exchange was evident for 40 days while the canopy was rebuilt; however, the carbon balance took approximately 70 days to recover. The annual fire free NEP at Howard Springs was estimated at -4.3 t C ha-1 y-1 with a range of -3.5 to -5.1 t C ha-1 y-1 across years. We calculated the average annual indirect fire effect as 0.7 t C ha-1 y-1 using a neural network model approach and estimated average emissions of fine and coarse fuels as 1.6 t C ha-1 y-1. This allowed us to calculate a net biome production of 2.0 t C ha-1 y-1. We then partitioned this remaining sink and suggest that most of this can be accounted for by woody increment (1.2 t C ha-1 y-1) and shrub encroachment (0.5 t C ha-1 y-1). Given the consistent sink at this site, even under an almost annual fire regime, there may be management options to increase carbon sequestration by reducing fire frequency.

  19. Drought sensitivity changes over the last century at the North American savanna-forest boundary

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heilman, K.; McLachlan, J. S.

    2017-12-01

    Future environmental changes can affect the sensitivity of tree growth to climate. Theses changes are of particular concern at biome boundaries where tree distribution could shift as a result of changes in both drought and drought sensitivity. One such region is the North American savanna-forest boundary, where increased CO2 and droughts could alter savanna and forest ecosystem distributions in two contrasting ways: 1). More severe droughts may increase drought sensitivity, favoring open savanna ecosystems or, 2). Increases in water use efficiency resulting from higher atmospheric CO2 may decrease drought sensitivity, promoting forest expansion. This study sought to understand whether the past 100 years of climate and CO2 changes have impacted regional tree growth-climate sensitivity. To test for these climate sensitivity changes, we measured the sensitivity of Quercus spp. radial growth to Palmer Drought Severity Index (PDSI). Tree growth sensitivity to climate can vary according to many factors, including: stand structure, available moisture, and tree age. To control for these factors, we sampled tree growth-climate responses at sites in both open and closed forests, and at both low and high annual precipitation. Within each site, we compared growth responses to climate between trees established under high CO2 conditions after 1950 (high CO2 young), and tree established before 1950 under low CO2 levels (low CO2 young). At most sites, low CO2 young have a higher drought sensitivity than higher CO2 young. These changes in the sensitivity to drought are consistent with CO2 enhancement of water use efficiency. Furthermore, these differences in drought sensitivity are higher at sites with high temperature and low precipitation, suggesting that the alleviation of drought is more likely in hot and dry regions. Thus, if CO2 enhancement is indeed occurring in these systems, lower growth sensitivity to drought in hot and dry regions could favor increased forest growth. If

  20. Three-dimensional woody vegetation structure across different land-use types and land-use intensities in a semi-arid savanna

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Fisher, J

    2009-07-01

    Full Text Available Factors influencing woody savanna vegetation structure across a land-use gradient of intensity (highly and lightly utilized communal rangeland) and type (national protected area, private game reserve and communal rangelands) were investigated. Small...

  1. Long term precipitation chemistry and wet deposition in a remote dry savanna site in Africa (Niger

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Galy-Lacaux

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available Long-term precipitation chemistry have been recorded in the rural area of Banizoumbou (Niger, representative of a semi-arid savanna ecosystem. A total of 305 rainfall samples ~90% of the total annual rainfall were collected from June 1994 to September 2005. From ionic chromatography, pH major inorganic and organic ions were detected. Rainwater chemistry is controlled by soil/dust emissions associated with terrigeneous elements represented by SO42−, Ca2+, Carbonates, K+ and Mg2+. It is found that calcium and carbonates represent ~40% of the total ionic charge. The second highest contribution is nitrogenous, with annual Volume Weighed Mean (VWM for NO3 and NH4+ concentrations of 11.6 and 18.1 μeq.l−1, respectively. This is the signature of ammonia sources from animals and NOx emissions from savannas soil-particles rain-induced. The mean annual NH3 and NO2 air concentration are of 6 ppbv and 2.6 ppbv, respectively. The annual VWM precipitation concentration of sodium and chloride are both of 8.7 μeq.l−1 which reflects the marine signature of monsoonal and humid air masses. The median pH value is of 6.05. Acidity is neutralized by mineral dust, mainly carbonates, and/or dissolved gases such NH3. High level of organic acidity with 8μeq.l−1 and 5.2 μeq.l−1 of formate and acetate were also found. The analysis of monthly Black Carbon emissions and Fraction of Absorbed Photosynthetically Active Radiation (FAPAR values show that both biogenic emission from vegetation and biomass burning could explain the rainfall organic acidity content. The interannual variability of the VWM concentrations around the mean (1994–2005 is between ±5% and ±30% and mainly due to variations of sources strength and rainfall spatio-temporal distribution. From 1994 to 2005

  2. Genetic Divergence in Eucalyptus camaldulensis Progenies in the Savanna Biome in Mato Grosso, Brazil.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Reginaldo Brito da Costa

    Full Text Available Assessing the parental genetic differences and their subsequent prediction of progeny performance is an important first step to assure the efficiency of any breeding program. In this study, we estimate the genetic divergence in Eucalyptus camaldulensis based on the morphological traits of 132 progenies grown in a savanna biome. Thus, a field experiment was performed using a randomized block design and five replications to compare divergences in total height, commercial height, diameter at breast height, stem form and survival rate at 48 months. Tocher's clustering method was performed using the Mahalanobis and Euclidian distances. The Mahalanobis distance seemed more reliable for the assessed parameters and clustered all of the progenies into fourteen major groups. The most similar progenies (86 accessions were clustered into Group I, while the most dissimilar (1 progeny represented Group XIV. The divergence analysis indicated that promising crosses could be made between progenies allocated in different groups for high genetic divergence and for favorable morphological traits.

  3. Spatial-temporal distribution of fire-protected savanna physiognomies in Southeastern Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcelo H.O. Pinheiro

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available The analysis of the influence of edaphic finer textures, as a facilitating factor for the expansion of forest formations in the absence of fire, was possible thanks to rare characteristics found in a savanna fragment located in the State of São Paulo, Brazil. The total suppression of fire for over four decades, and the occurrence of two savanna physiognomies, cerrado sensu stricto and cerradão, allowed the conduction of this study based on the hypothesis that cerradão, a physiognomy of forest aspect consisting of fire-sensitive tree and shrubs species, is favored by fire absence and higher soil hydric retention capacity. Edaphic samples were collected from a regular grid of 200 m² for the production of isopletic maps of the distribution of clay, fine sand, coarse sand and silt edaphic textures by the geostatistic method of ordinary kriging. Changes in the areas occupied by both savanna physiognomies, defined on the basis of aerial photographs taken over a period of 43 years, were assessed through mean variation rates. Besides corroborating the hypothesis of edaphic hydric retention as a facilitating factor for the expansion of forest physiognomies in savanna areas, we were able to infer the positive influence of higher precipitation on the increase in cerradão expansion rates.A influência de texturas edáficas finas, como fator de facilitação para a expansão de formações florestais sobre áreas savânicas, através da maior retenção hídrica edáfica, na ausência de incêndios, foi possível ser estudada graças às características encontradas em um fragmento savânico com 38,8 ha, situado em Corumbataí (SP. A supressão total do fogo por quatro décadas, e a ocorrência de duas fisionomias, cerrado sensu stricto e cerradão, permitiram a condução deste estudo. Amostras de solo foram coletadas em uma grade regular de 200 m², abrangendo toda a área do fragmento. Foram produzidos mapas iso-pléticos, com a distribuição das

  4. Assessing diet in savanna herbivores using stable carbon isotope ratios of faeces

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Codron

    2005-06-01

    Full Text Available In African savannas, browse-based resources (@3 plants are isotopically distinct from grasses (@4 plants. The carbon isotopic composition of the basic plant diet is recorded in animal tissues. Mammal faeces are a readily accessible, non-invasive, sample material for temporally resolved dietary reconstructions. Faeces, however, include both undigested plant matter and waste, hence accuracy of dietary calculations could potentially be compromised by shifts in plant isotopic values related to seasonal or spatial differences, or by variability in the isotopic differences between faeces and diet. A controlled feeding study of four ungulate species showed a small, consistent difference between diet and faeces of-0.9 o, irrespective of whether the diet was @3 or C4-based. Results from faeces oftaxa known to be pure grazers, pure browsers, and mixed-feeders from the Kruger National Park were entirely consistent with their diets, but the accuracy of dietary reconstructions is enhanced with data from local plant communities.

  5. Biomass burning aerosols in a savanna region of the Ivory Coast

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cachier, H.; Ducret, J.; Bremond, M.P.; Yoboue, V.; Lacaux, J.P.; Gaudichet, A.; Baudet, J.

    1991-01-01

    In order to characterize the biomass burning particulate emissions, the authors sampled aerosols at Lamto in the wooded savanna of the Ivory Coast, during periods when the atmosphere is primarily influenced by various prescribed nearby or distant fires. They present here the results of parallel analyses which focus on the problem of tracing biomass burning aerosols at different levels of investigation. Soluble ion measurements give evidence of enhanced levels of various cations (potassium, calcium) and anions (sulfate, nitrate, oxalate), and the appearance of detectable oxalate concentrations. Further indication is obtained by analytical transmission electron microscopy of the small individual particles focusing on their trace element content. In addition, studies of the bulk carbonaceous content of the particles appear to provide primarily some possible indicators of the fire variability such as the isotropic composition fraction in the carbonaceous material (Cb to Ct ratio)

  6. Seasonality of fire weather strongly influences fire regimes in South Florida savanna-grassland landscapes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William J Platt

    Full Text Available Fire seasonality, an important characteristic of fire regimes, commonly is delineated using seasons based on single weather variables (rainfall or temperature. We used nonparametric cluster analyses of a 17-year (1993-2009 data set of weather variables that influence likelihoods and spread of fires (relative humidity, air temperature, solar radiation, wind speed, soil moisture to explore seasonality of fire in pine savanna-grassland landscapes at the Avon Park Air Force Range in southern Florida. A four-variable, three-season model explained more variation within fire weather variables than models with more seasons. The three-season model also delineated intra-annual timing of fire more accurately than a conventional rainfall-based two-season model. Two seasons coincided roughly with dry and wet seasons based on rainfall. The third season, which we labeled the fire season, occurred between dry and wet seasons and was characterized by fire-promoting conditions present annually: drought, intense solar radiation, low humidity, and warm air temperatures. Fine fuels consisting of variable combinations of pyrogenic pine needles, abundant C4 grasses, and flammable shrubs, coupled with low soil moisture, and lightning ignitions early in the fire season facilitate natural landscape-scale wildfires that burn uplands and across wetlands. We related our three season model to fires with different ignition sources (lightning, military missions, and prescribed fires over a 13-year period with fire records (1997-2009. Largest wildfires originate from lightning and military ignitions that occur within the early fire season substantially prior to the peak of lightning strikes in the wet season. Prescribed ignitions, in contrast, largely occur outside the fire season. Our delineation of a pronounced fire season provides insight into the extent to which different human-derived fire regimes mimic lightning fire regimes. Delineation of a fire season associated with

  7. Ecosystem properties of semiarid savanna grassland in West Africa and its relationship with environmental variability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tagesson, Torbern; Fensholt, Rasmus; Guiro, Idrissa; Rasmussen, Mads Olander; Huber, Silvia; Mbow, Cheikh; Garcia, Monica; Horion, Stéphanie; Sandholt, Inge; Holm-Rasmussen, Bo; Göttsche, Frank M; Ridler, Marc-Etienne; Olén, Niklas; Lundegard Olsen, Jørgen; Ehammer, Andrea; Madsen, Mathias; Olesen, Folke S; Ardö, Jonas

    2015-01-01

    The Dahra field site in Senegal, West Africa, was established in 2002 to monitor ecosystem properties of semiarid savanna grassland and their responses to climatic and environmental change. This article describes the environment and the ecosystem properties of the site using a unique set of in situ data. The studied variables include hydroclimatic variables, species composition, albedo, normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI), hyperspectral characteristics (350-1800 nm), surface reflectance anisotropy, brightness temperature, fraction of absorbed photosynthetic active radiation (FAPAR), biomass, vegetation water content, and land-atmosphere exchanges of carbon (NEE) and energy. The Dahra field site experiences a typical Sahelian climate and is covered by coexisting trees (~3% canopy cover) and grass species, characterizing large parts of the Sahel. This makes the site suitable for investigating relationships between ecosystem properties and hydroclimatic variables for semiarid savanna ecosystems of the region. There were strong interannual, seasonal and diurnal dynamics in NEE, with high values of ~-7.5 g C m(-2)  day(-1) during the peak of the growing season. We found neither browning nor greening NDVI trends from 2002 to 2012. Interannual variation in species composition was strongly related to rainfall distribution. NDVI and FAPAR were strongly related to species composition, especially for years dominated by the species Zornia glochidiata. This influence was not observed in interannual variation in biomass and vegetation productivity, thus challenging dryland productivity models based on remote sensing. Surface reflectance anisotropy (350-1800 nm) at the peak of the growing season varied strongly depending on wavelength and viewing angle thereby having implications for the design of remotely sensed spectral vegetation indices covering different wavelength regions. The presented time series of in situ data have great potential for dryland dynamics

  8. Seasonality of the activity pattern of Callithrix penicillata (Primates, Callitrichidae in the cerrado (scrub savanna vegetation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. L. Vilela

    Full Text Available Two wild groups of Callithrix penicillata, the Black Pincelled Marmoset, were observed from January to September 1998, in two areas, one an area of dense scrub savanna vegetation (cerrado and the other, a semidecidual woodland (cerradão, both within the boundaries of the Ecological Reserve of IBGE (Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics, in an environmentally protected area, the APA (Portuguese abbreviation for "environmental protected area" Gama/Cabeça-de-Veado, Brasília, DF. The behavioral data collected during the rainy (January 15 to April 15 and dry season (June 1 to September 15 were compared. Because of the proximity to the Reserve facilities, the group from the dense scrub savanna vegetation (CD was submitted to antropic impacts different from the group in the semidecidual woodland (CE, which was using as territory an area that had been suffering from man-made fires every two years as part of a long-term experimental project on fire impacts. The behavioral data was quantified by instantaneous cross-section ("scan sampling" every ten minutes with records of locomotion, rest, foraging for insects, use of exudate, and feeding. During the whole year, the greatest percentage of time spent by CE and CD was in foraging for insects, with 44% and 39%, respectively. It was evident when comparing the data for the two seasons that, for both groups, foraging for insects was more intense during the dry season, possibly to complement the shortage of food, and locomotion increased during the rainy season. The greater the availability and distribution of fruit in the areas, the greater the locomotion of the groups to obtain these resources. None of the other behavioral patterns, including the use of exudates, presented significant differences between the two seasons. Both groups foraged more frequently during the dry season and locomoted more during the rainy one.

  9. Invasive Andropogon gayanus (gamba grass) is an ecosystem transformer of nitrogen relations in Australian savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rossiter-Rachor, N A; Setterfield, S A; Douglas, M M; Hutley, L B; Cook, G D; Schmidt, S

    2009-09-01

    Invasion by the African grass Andropogon gayanus is drastically altering the understory structure of oligotrophic savannas in tropical Australia. We compared nitrogen (N) relations and phenology of A. gayanus and native grasses to examine the impact of invasion on N cycling and to determine possible reasons for invasiveness of A. gayanus. Andropogon gayanus produced up to 10 and four times more shoot phytomass and root biomass, with up to seven and 2.5 times greater shoot and root N pools than native grass understory. These pronounced differences in phytomass and N pools between A. gayanus and native grasses were associated with an altered N cycle. Most growth occurs in the wet season when, compared with native grasses, dominance of A. gayanus was associated with significantly lower total soil N pools, lower nitrification rates, up to three times lower soil nitrate availability, and up to three times higher soil ammonium availability. Uptake kinetics for different N sources were studied with excised roots of three grass species ex situ. Excised roots of A. gayanus had an over six times higher-uptake rate of ammonium than roots of native grasses, while native grass Eriachne triseta had a three times higher uptake rate of nitrate than A. gayanus. We hypothesize that A. gayanus stimulates ammonification but inhibits nitrification, as was shown to occur in its native range in Africa, and that this modification of the soil N cycle is linked to the species' preference for ammonium as an N source. This mechanism could result in altered soil N relations and could enhance the competitive superiority and persistence of A. gayanus in Australian savannas.

  10. Within-population isotopic niche variability in savanna mammals: disparity between carnivores and herbivores

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    Daryl eCodron

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Large mammal ecosystems have relatively simple food webs, usually comprising three – and sometimes only two – trophic links. Since many syntopic species from the same trophic level therefore share resources, dietary niche partitioning features prominently within these systems. In African and other subtropical savannas, stable carbon isotopes readily distinguish between herbivore species for which foliage and other parts of dicot plants (13C-depleted C3 vegetation are the primary resource (browsers and those for which grasses (13C-enriched C4 vegetation are staples (grazers. Similarly, carbon isotopes distinguish between carnivore diets that may be richer in either browser, grazer, or intermediate-feeding prey. Here, we investigate levels of carbon and nitrogen isotopic niche variation and niche partitioning within populations (or species of carnivores and herbivores from South African savannas. We emphasize predictable differences in within-population trends across trophic levels: we expect that herbivore populations, which require more foraging effort due to higher intake requirements, are far less likely to display within-population resource partitioning than carnivore populations. Our results reveal generally narrower isotopic niche breadths in herbivore than carnivore populations, but more importantly we find lower levels of isotopic differentiation across individuals within herbivore species. While these results offer some support for our general hypothesis, the current paucity of isotopic data for African carnivores limits our ability to test the complete set of predictions arising from our hypothesis. Nevertheless, given the different ecological and ecophysiological constraints to foraging behaviour within each trophic level, comparisons across carnivores and herbivores, which are possible within such simplified foodwebs, make these systems ideal for developing a process-based understanding of conditions underlying the evolution of

  11. Seed-storage Mycoflora of Peanut Cultivars Grown in Nigerian Savanna

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    Nwankiti, AO.

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available Storage of peanut is increasingly becoming important both among growers and users of the crop in Nigerian savanna. The aim is to sell the produce and maximize benefits accruing from the crops during scarcity. Very often, these envisaged advantages fail due to unfavourable market forces, thus compelling them to sell at a loss or store them across seasons for periods ranging from one to two years. However, information on fungi associated with storage of such peanuts in Nigerian savanna and its attendant problems are yet to be investigated. Thus, the seed mycoflora and viability seven common peanut cultivars stored under conditions similar to traditional settings were investigated using different isolating techniques. The peanut cultivars were RMP 12, RMP 91, RRB, 48-115B, M554-76, 55-437 Ex-Dakar and a local cultivar. None of these cultivars possessed resistance to in vitro colonization by fungi. Aspergillus niger, Aspergillus flavus and Rhizopus stolonifer were consistently isolated from all the cultivars from almost all isolating techniques. Other fungi were Fusarium chlamydosporium, F. roseum, F. oxysporium, Penicillium spp., Curvularia spp., Botryodiplodia theobromae, Macrophomina phaseolina and Sclerotium rolfsii. Relative percentages, however, varied with individual fungi and peanut cultivars. The test with seven different types of growth media gave the highest fungi recovery rate than the blotter paper technique. Seed viability was lower with peanut seeds stored for two years. Also, the relative percentage occurrence of individual fungi was significantly higher with seeds stored for two years. While we recommend the use of growth media for recovery and study of seed mycoflora, peanut seeds should not be stored for more than one year.

  12. Indirect effects of domestic and wild herbivores on butterflies in an African savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilkerson, Marit L; Roche, Leslie M; Young, Truman P

    2013-10-01

    Indirect interactions driven by livestock and wild herbivores are increasingly recognized as important aspects of community dynamics in savannas and rangelands. Large ungulate herbivores can both directly and indirectly impact the reproductive structures of plants, which in turn can affect the pollinators of those plants. We examined how wild herbivores and cattle each indirectly affect the abundance of a common pollinator butterfly taxon, Colotis spp., at a set of long-term, large herbivore exclosure plots in a semiarid savanna in central Kenya. We also examined effects of herbivore exclusion on the main food plant of Colotis spp., which was also the most common flowering species in our plots: the shrub Cadaba farinosa. The study was conducted in four types of experimental plots: cattle-only, wildlife-only, cattle and wildlife (all large herbivores), and no large herbivores. Across all plots, Colotis spp. abundances were positively correlated with both Cadaba flower numbers (adult food resources) and total Cadaba canopy area (larval food resources). Structural equation modeling (SEM) revealed that floral resources drove the abundance of Colotis butterflies. Excluding browsing wildlife increased the abundances of both Cadaba flowers and Colotis butterflies. However, flower numbers and Colotis spp. abundances were greater in plots with cattle herbivory than in plots that excluded all large herbivores. Our results suggest that wild browsing herbivores can suppress pollinator species whereas well-managed cattle use may benefit important pollinators and the plants that depend on them. This study documents a novel set of ecological interactions that demonstrate how both conservation and livelihood goals can be met in a working landscape with abundant wildlife and livestock.

  13. Seasonality of Fire Weather Strongly Influences Fire Regimes in South Florida Savanna-Grassland Landscapes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Platt, William J.; Orzell, Steve L.; Slocum, Matthew G.

    2015-01-01

    Fire seasonality, an important characteristic of fire regimes, commonly is delineated using seasons based on single weather variables (rainfall or temperature). We used nonparametric cluster analyses of a 17-year (1993–2009) data set of weather variables that influence likelihoods and spread of fires (relative humidity, air temperature, solar radiation, wind speed, soil moisture) to explore seasonality of fire in pine savanna-grassland landscapes at the Avon Park Air Force Range in southern Florida. A four-variable, three-season model explained more variation within fire weather variables than models with more seasons. The three-season model also delineated intra-annual timing of fire more accurately than a conventional rainfall-based two-season model. Two seasons coincided roughly with dry and wet seasons based on rainfall. The third season, which we labeled the fire season, occurred between dry and wet seasons and was characterized by fire-promoting conditions present annually: drought, intense solar radiation, low humidity, and warm air temperatures. Fine fuels consisting of variable combinations of pyrogenic pine needles, abundant C4 grasses, and flammable shrubs, coupled with low soil moisture, and lightning ignitions early in the fire season facilitate natural landscape-scale wildfires that burn uplands and across wetlands. We related our three season model to fires with different ignition sources (lightning, military missions, and prescribed fires) over a 13-year period with fire records (1997–2009). Largest wildfires originate from lightning and military ignitions that occur within the early fire season substantially prior to the peak of lightning strikes in the wet season. Prescribed ignitions, in contrast, largely occur outside the fire season. Our delineation of a pronounced fire season provides insight into the extent to which different human-derived fire regimes mimic lightning fire regimes. Delineation of a fire season associated with timing of

  14. Impacts of an extreme cyclone event on landscape-scale savanna fire, productivity and greenhouse gas emissions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hutley, L B; Maier, S W; Evans, B J; Beringer, J; Cook, G D; Razon, E

    2013-01-01

    North Australian tropical savanna accounts for 12% of the world’s total savanna land cover. Accordingly, understanding processes that govern carbon, water and energy exchange within this biome is critical to global carbon and water budgeting. Climate and disturbances drive ecosystem carbon dynamics. Savanna ecosystems of the coastal and sub-coastal of north Australia experience a unique combination of climatic extremes and are in a state of near constant disturbance from fire events (1 in 3 years), storms resulting in windthrow (1 in 5–10 years) and mega-cyclones (1 in 500–1000 years). Critically, these disturbances occur over large areas creating a spatial and temporal mosaic of carbon sources and sinks. We quantify the impact on gross primary productivity (GPP) and fire occurrence from a tropical mega-cyclone, tropical Cyclone Monica (TC Monica), which affected 10 400 km 2 of savanna across north Australia, resulting in the mortality and severe structural damage to ∼140 million trees. We estimate a net carbon equivalent emission of 43 Tg of CO 2 -e using the moderate resolution imaging spectroradiometer (MODIS) GPP (MOD17A2) to quantify spatial and temporal patterns pre- and post-TC Monica. GPP was suppressed for four years after the event, equivalent to a loss of GPP of 0.5 Tg C over this period. On-ground fuel loads were estimated to potentially release 51.2 Mt CO 2 -e, equivalent to ∼10% of Australia’s accountable greenhouse gas emissions. We present a simple carbon balance to examine the relative importance of frequency versus impact for a number of key disturbance processes such as fire, termite consumption and intense but infrequent mega-cyclones. Our estimates suggested that fire and termite consumption had a larger impact on Net Biome Productivity than infrequent mega-cyclones. We demonstrate the importance of understanding how climate variability and disturbance impacts savanna dynamics in the context of the increasing interest in

  15. Influence of savanna fire on Australian monsoon season precipitation and circulation as simulated using a distributed computing environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lynch, Amanda H.; Abramson, David; Görgen, Klaus; Beringer, Jason; Uotila, Petteri

    2007-10-01

    Fires in the Australian savanna have been hypothesized to affect monsoon evolution, but the hypothesis is controversial and the effects have not been quantified. A distributed computing approach allows the development of a challenging experimental design that permits simultaneous variation of all fire attributes. The climate model simulations are distributed around multiple independent computer clusters in six countries, an approach that has potential for a range of other large simulation applications in the earth sciences. The experiment clarifies that savanna burning can shape the monsoon through two mechanisms. Boundary-layer circulation and large-scale convergence is intensified monotonically through increasing fire intensity and area burned. However, thresholds of fire timing and area are evident in the consequent influence on monsoon rainfall. In the optimal band of late, high intensity fires with a somewhat limited extent, it is possible for the wet season to be significantly enhanced.

  16. Group composition and activity patterns of brown-nosed coatis in savanna fragments, Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    EMJ. Costa

    Full Text Available The Parque Estadual do Prosa (PEP, in Campo Grande, MS, is an urban fragment of savanna (cerrado and tall savanna woodland (cerradão, with an area of 1,335 km², where the population density of brown-nosed coatis is 33.71 individuals/km². Our results suggest that seasonality at the PEP causes changes in the availability of resources for coatis, altering their home range areas, their dispersion patterns and their daily behaviour. And our observations regarding male-band associations, agonistic interactions between bands and their daily behaviour emphasize the plasticity of coati social structure, and its potential for future comparative studies.

  17. Structural, physiognomic and above-ground biomass variation in savanna–forest transition zones on three continents – how different are co-occurring savanna and forest formations?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. M. Veenendaal

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Through interpretations of remote-sensing data and/or theoretical propositions, the idea that forest and savanna represent "alternative stable states" is gaining increasing acceptance. Filling an observational gap, we present detailed stratified floristic and structural analyses for forest and savanna stands located mostly within zones of transition (where both vegetation types occur in close proximity in Africa, South America and Australia. Woody plant leaf area index variation was related to tree canopy cover in a similar way for both savanna and forest with substantial overlap between the two vegetation types. As total woody plant canopy cover increased, so did the relative contribution of middle and lower strata of woody vegetation. Herbaceous layer cover declined as woody cover increased. This pattern of understorey grasses and herbs progressively replaced by shrubs as the canopy closes over was found for both savanna and forests and on all continents. Thus, once subordinate woody canopy layers are taken into account, a less marked transition in woody plant cover across the savanna–forest-species discontinuum is observed compared to that inferred when trees of a basal diameter > 0.1 m are considered in isolation. This is especially the case for shrub-dominated savannas and in taller savannas approaching canopy closure. An increased contribution of forest species to the total subordinate cover is also observed as savanna stand canopy closure occurs. Despite similarities in canopy-cover characteristics, woody vegetation in Africa and Australia attained greater heights and stored a greater amount of above-ground biomass than in South America. Up to three times as much above-ground biomass is stored in forests compared to savannas under equivalent climatic conditions. Savanna–forest transition zones were also found to typically occur at higher precipitation regimes for South America than for Africa. Nevertheless, consistent across all three

  18. Developing a savanna burning emissions abatement methodology for tussock grasslands in high rainfall regions of northern Australia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeremy Russell-Smith

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Fire-prone tropical savanna and grassland systems are a significant source of atmospheric emissions of greenhouse gases.  In recent years, substantial research has been directed towards developing accounting methodologies for savanna burning emissions to be applied in Australia’s National Greenhouse Gas Inventory, as well as for commercial carbon trading purposes.  That work has focused on woody savanna systems.  Here, we extend the methodological approach to include tussock grasslands and associated Melaleuca-dominated open woodlands (<10% foliage cover in higher rainfall (>1,000 mm/annum regions of northern Australia.  Field assessments under dry season conditions focused on deriving fuel accumulation, fire patchiness and combustion relationships for key fuel types: fine fuels − grass and litter; coarse woody fuels − twigs <6 mm diameter; heavy woody fuels − >6 mm diameter; and shrubs.  In contrast with previous savanna burning assessments, fire treatments undertaken under early dry season burning conditions resulted in negligible patchiness and very substantial consumption of fine fuels.  In effect, burning in the early dry season provides no benefits in greenhouse gas emissions and emissions reductions in tussock grasslands can be achieved only through reducing the extent of burning.  The practical implications of reduced burning in higher rainfall northern Australian grassland systems are discussed, indicating that there are significant constraints, including infrastructural, cultural and woody thickening issues.  Similar opportunities and constraints are observed in other international contexts, but especially project implementation challenges associated with legislative, political and governance issues.

  19. Multiple Scales of Control on the Structure and Spatial Distribution of Woody Vegetation in African Savanna Watersheds.

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    Nicholas R Vaughn

    Full Text Available Factors controlling savanna woody vegetation structure vary at multiple spatial and temporal scales, and as a consequence, unraveling their combined effects has proven to be a classic challenge in savanna ecology. We used airborne LiDAR (light detection and ranging to map three-dimensional woody vegetation structure throughout four savanna watersheds, each contrasting in geologic substrate and climate, in Kruger National Park, South Africa. By comparison of the four watersheds, we found that geologic substrate had a stronger effect than climate in determining watershed-scale differences in vegetation structural properties, including cover, height and crown density. Generalized Linear Models were used to assess the spatial distribution of woody vegetation structural properties, including cover, height and crown density, in relation to mapped hydrologic, topographic and fire history traits. For each substrate and climate combination, models incorporating topography, hydrology and fire history explained up to 30% of the remaining variation in woody canopy structure, but inclusion of a spatial autocovariate term further improved model performance. Both crown density and the cover of shorter woody canopies were determined more by unknown factors likely to be changing on smaller spatial scales, such as soil texture, herbivore abundance or fire behavior, than by our mapped regional-scale changes in topography and hydrology. We also detected patterns in spatial covariance at distances up to 50-450 m, depending on watershed and structural metric. Our results suggest that large-scale environmental factors play a smaller role than is often attributed to them in determining woody vegetation structure in southern African savannas. This highlights the need for more spatially-explicit, wide-area analyses using high resolution remote sensing techniques.

  20. Relative Suitability Evaluation of Two Methods of Particle-Size Analysis for Selected Soils of Sudan Savanna of Nigeria

    OpenAIRE

    B. A. Lawal; B. R. Singh; G. A. Babaji; P. A. Tsado

    2013-01-01

    The two widely used methods base on the sedimentation principle (Bouyoucos hydrometer and International pipette) for particle-size analysis were comparatively evaluated on soils collected from various locations in Sudan savanna of Nigeria particularly from Sokoto and Zamfara States. The hydrometer method under-estimated the silt and over-estimated the clay content. Also, the hydrometer reading proved difficult and tended to submerge when floated for clay reading in the suspension of very sand...

  1. Monitoring the Distribution and Dynamics of an Invasive Grass in Tropical Savanna Using Airborne LiDAR

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    Shaun R. Levick

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available The spread of an alien invasive grass (gamba grass—Andropogon gayanus in the tropical savannas of Northern Australia is a major threat to habitat quality and biodiversity in the region, primarily through its influence on fire intensity. Effective control and eradication of this invader requires better insight into its spatial distribution and rate of spread to inform management actions. We used full-waveform airborne LiDAR to map areas of known A. gayanus invasion in the Batchelor region of the Northern Territory, Australia. Our stratified sampling campaign included wooded savanna areas with differing degrees of A. gayanus invasion and adjacent areas of native grass and woody tree mixtures. We used height and spatial contiguity based metrics to classify returns from A. gayanus and developed spatial representations of A. gayanus occurrence (1 m resolution and canopy cover (10 m resolution. The cover classification proved robust against two independent field-based investigations at 500 m2 (R2 = 0.87, RMSE = 12.53 and 100 m2 (R2 = 0.79, RMSE = 14.13 scale. Our mapping results provide a solid benchmark for evaluating the rate and pattern of A. gayanus spread from future LiDAR campaigns. In addition, this high-resolution mapping can be used to inform satellite image analysis for the evaluation of A. gayanus invasion over broader regional scales. Our research highlights the huge potential that airborne LiDAR holds for facilitating the monitoring and management of savanna habitat condition.

  2. The effects of forest-savanna-grassland gradients on bird communities of Chiquitano Dry Forests domain, in western Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Godoi, Mauricio N; Souza, Edivaldo O DE

    2016-01-01

    Different vegetation types are distributed in mountains according to altitude, topography and soil. The composition and structure of bird communities in these areas can change in relation to the vegetation gradient, with particular communities occupying each habitat type. In this study we present the changes in composition, species richness and bird abundance over the gradient of forests, savannas and altitudinal grasslands of Maciço do Urucum, a mountainous region located in the Chiquitano Dry Forests domain in western Brazil. We recorded 165 bird species through qualitative and quantitative methods. Forested savannas, riparian forests and submontane forests presented the highest richness and abundance of birds, while arboreal savannas and altitudinal grasslands had intermediate and low values, respectively. The bird composition was similar between riparian and submontane forests, while other vegetation types present more dissimilar bird communities. Our results show differences in composition, richness and bird abundance among the vegetation types present at Maciço do Urucum, and highlight an important function of vegetation gradients for the conservation of bird communities in mountains. Additionally, this is the first study of the bird communities in the Brazilian Chiquitano Dry Forests, an important domain in the west of Brazil which has been poorly studied.

  3. Overlap in nitrogen sources and redistribution of nitrogen between trees and grasses in a semi-arid savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Priyadarshini, K V R; Prins, Herbert H T; de Bie, Steven; Heitkönig, Ignas M A; Woodborne, Stephan; Gort, Gerrit; Kirkman, Kevin; Fry, Brian; de Kroon, Hans

    2014-04-01

    A key question in savanna ecology is how trees and grasses coexist under N limitation. We used N stable isotopes and N content to study N source partitioning across seasons from trees and associated grasses in a semi-arid savanna. We also used (15)N tracer additions to investigate possible redistribution of N by trees to grasses. Foliar stable N isotope ratio (δ(15)N) values were consistent with trees and grasses using mycorrhiza-supplied N in all seasons except in the wet season when they switched to microbially fixed N. The dependence of trees and grasses on mineralized soil N seemed highly unlikely based on seasonal variation in mineralization rates in the Kruger Park region. Remarkably, foliar δ(15)N values were similar for all three tree species differing in the potential for N fixation through nodulation. The tracer experiment showed that N was redistributed by trees to understory grasses in all seasons. Our results suggest that the redistribution of N from trees to grasses and uptake of N was independent of water redistribution. Although there is overlap of N sources between trees and grasses, dependence on biological sources of N coupled with redistribution of subsoil N by trees may contribute to the coexistence of trees and grasses in semi-arid savannas.

  4. Effects of an accidental dry-season fire on the reproductive phenology of two Neotropical savanna shrubs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dodonov, P; Zanelli, C B; Silva-Matos, D M

    2017-10-30

    Fire is a recurrent disturbance in savanna vegetation and savanna species are adapted to it. Even so, fire may affect various aspects of plant ecology, including phenology. We studied the effects of a spatially heterogeneous fire on the reproductive phenology of two dominant woody plant species, Miconia albicans (Melastomataceae) and Schefflera vinosa (Araliaceae), in a savanna area in South-eastern Brazil. The study site was partially burnt by a dry-season accidental fire in August 2006, and we monitored the phenolology of 30 burnt and 30 unburnt individuals of each species between September 2007 and September 2008. We used restricted randomizations to assess phenological differences between the burnt and unburnt individuals. Fire had negative effects on the phenology of M. albicans, with a smaller production of reproductive structures in general and of floral buds, total fruits, and ripe fruits in burnt plants. All unburnt but only 16% of the burnt M. albicans plants produced ripe fruits during the study. Fire effects on S. vinosa were smaller, but there was a greater production of floral buds and fruits (but not ripe fruits) by burnt plants; approximately 90% of the individuals of S. vinosa produced ripe fruits during the study, regardless of having been burnt or not. The differences between the two species may be related to S. vinosa's faster growth and absence from the seed bank at the study site, whereas M. albicans grows more slowly and is dominant in the seed bank.

  5. Shifts in functional traits elevate risk of fire-driven tree dieback in tropical savanna and forest biomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pellegrini, Adam F A; Franco, Augusto C; Hoffmann, William A

    2016-03-01

    Numerous predictions indicate rising CO2 will accelerate the expansion of forests into savannas. Although encroaching forests can sequester carbon over the short term, increased fires and drought-fire interactions could offset carbon gains, which may be amplified by the shift toward forest plant communities more susceptible to fire-driven dieback. We quantify how bark thickness determines the ability of individual tree species to tolerate fire and subsequently determine the fire sensitivity of ecosystem carbon across 180 plots in savannas and forests throughout the 2.2-million km(2) Cerrado region in Brazil. We find that not accounting for variation in bark thickness across tree species underestimated carbon losses in forests by ~50%, totaling 0.22 PgC across the Cerrado region. The lower bark thicknesses of plant species in forests decreased fire tolerance to such an extent that a third of carbon gains during forest encroachment may be at risk of dieback if burned. These results illustrate that consideration of trait-based differences in fire tolerance is critical for determining the climate-carbon-fire feedback in tropical savanna and forest biomes. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  6. Seasonal variation of carbon fluxes in a sparse savanna in semi arid Sudan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ardö, Jonas; Mölder, Meelis; El-Tahir, Bashir Awad; Elkhidir, Hatim Abdalla Mohammed

    2008-12-01

    Large spatial, seasonal and annual variability of major drivers of the carbon cycle (precipitation, temperature, fire regime and nutrient availability) are common in the Sahel region. This causes large variability in net ecosystem exchange and in vegetation productivity, the subsistence basis for a major part of the rural population in Sahel. This study compares the 2005 dry and wet season fluxes of CO2 for a grass land/sparse savanna site in semi arid Sudan and relates these fluxes to water availability and incoming photosynthetic photon flux density (PPFD). Data from this site could complement the current sparse observation network in Africa, a continent where climatic change could significantly impact the future and which constitute a weak link in our understanding of the global carbon cycle. The dry season (represented by Julian day 35-46, February 2005) was characterized by low soil moisture availability, low evapotranspiration and a high vapor pressure deficit. The mean daily NEE (net ecosystem exchange, Eq. 1) was -14.7 mmol d-1 for the 12 day period (negative numbers denote sinks, i.e. flux from the atmosphere to the biosphere). The water use efficiency (WUE) was 1.6 mmol CO2 mol H2O-1 and the light use efficiency (LUE) was 0.95 mmol CO2 mol PPFD-1. Photosynthesis is a weak, but linear function of PPFD. The wet season (represented by Julian day 266-273, September 2005) was, compared to the dry season, characterized by slightly higher soil moisture availability, higher evapotranspiration and a slightly lower vapor pressure deficit. The mean daily NEE was -152 mmol d-1 for the 8 day period. The WUE was lower, 0.97 mmol CO2 mol H2O-1 and the LUE was higher, 7.2 mumol CO2 mmol PPFD-1 during the wet season compared to the dry season. During the wet season photosynthesis increases with PPFD to about 1600 mumol m-2s-1 and then levels off. Based on data collected during two short periods, the studied ecosystem was a sink of carbon both during the dry and wet season

  7. Seasonal variation of carbon fluxes in a sparse savanna in semi arid Sudan

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    El-Tahir Bashir

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Large spatial, seasonal and annual variability of major drivers of the carbon cycle (precipitation, temperature, fire regime and nutrient availability are common in the Sahel region. This causes large variability in net ecosystem exchange and in vegetation productivity, the subsistence basis for a major part of the rural population in Sahel. This study compares the 2005 dry and wet season fluxes of CO2 for a grass land/sparse savanna site in semi arid Sudan and relates these fluxes to water availability and incoming photosynthetic photon flux density (PPFD. Data from this site could complement the current sparse observation network in Africa, a continent where climatic change could significantly impact the future and which constitute a weak link in our understanding of the global carbon cycle. Results The dry season (represented by Julian day 35–46, February 2005 was characterized by low soil moisture availability, low evapotranspiration and a high vapor pressure deficit. The mean daily NEE (net ecosystem exchange, Eq. 1 was -14.7 mmol d-1 for the 12 day period (negative numbers denote sinks, i.e. flux from the atmosphere to the biosphere. The water use efficiency (WUE was 1.6 mmol CO2 mol H2O-1 and the light use efficiency (LUE was 0.95 mmol CO2 mol PPFD-1. Photosynthesis is a weak, but linear function of PPFD. The wet season (represented by Julian day 266–273, September 2005 was, compared to the dry season, characterized by slightly higher soil moisture availability, higher evapotranspiration and a slightly lower vapor pressure deficit. The mean daily NEE was -152 mmol d-1 for the 8 day period. The WUE was lower, 0.97 mmol CO2 mol H2O-1 and the LUE was higher, 7.2 μmol CO2 mmol PPFD-1 during the wet season compared to the dry season. During the wet season photosynthesis increases with PPFD to about 1600 μmol m-2s-1 and then levels off. Conclusion Based on data collected during two short periods, the studied ecosystem

  8. Nitrogen transformations in response to temperature and rainfall manipulation in oak savanna: A global change experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wellman, R. L.; Boutton, T. W.; Tjoelker, M. G.; Volder, A.; Briske, D. D.

    2013-12-01

    Increasing concentrations of greenhouse gases are projected to elevate global surface air temperatures by 1.1 to 6.4°C by the end of the century, and potentially magnify the intensity and variability of seasonal precipitation distribution. The mid-latitude grasslands of North America are predicted to experience substantial modification in precipitation regimes, with a shift towards drier summers and wetter spring and fall seasons. Despite these predictions, little is known concerning the effects of these global climate change drivers or their potential interactive effects on nitrogen (N) cycling processes. The purpose of this study is to quantify seasonal variation in rates of N-mineralization, nitrification, and N-losses via leaching in soil subjected to experimental warming and rainfall manipulation. Research was conducted at the Texas A&M Warming and Rainfall Manipulation (WaRM) Site in College Station where eight 9x18m rainout shelters and two unsheltered controls were established in post oak savanna in 2003. Replicate annual rainfall redistribution treatments (n = 4) are applied at the shelter level (long term mean vs. 40% of summer redistributed to fall and spring with same annual total). Warming treatments (ambient vs. 24-hr IR canopy warming of 1-3°C) were applied to planted monocultures of juniper and little bluestem, and a juniper-grass combination. Both juniper and little bluestem are key species within the post oak savanna region. Plots were sampled from the full factorial design during years six and seven of the WaRM experiment. Soil N-mineralization, nitrification, and N-losses via leaching were assessed quarterly for two years using the resin core incubation method. Rainfall, species composition, and time interacted significantly to influence both ammonification and nitrification. Highest rates of ammonification (0.115 mg NH4+ -N/ kg soil/day) occurred in grass monocultures during summer in the control rainfall plots, whereas highest rates of

  9. Modeling the health and productivity of Oak Savannas in central USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nightingale, J. M.; Hill, M. J.

    2012-12-01

    Oak species have a long history of domination in eastern North America and their present distribution in various regions exceeds that recorded in the original forests at the time of European settlement. The increase in oak during the late 18th and 19th centuries can be attributed to historical changes in disturbance regimes in the eastern biome. The expansion in oak distribution has occurred on xeric or nutrient-poor sites, which indicates the stress tolerance capabilities of many oak species. The aim of this research is to assess the health and productivity of the fragmented oak savannas that span from Texas north to the Canada border using statewide GAP, climate and MODIS data and the 3PGS (Physiological Principles Predicting Growth using satellite data) ecosystem process model. 3-PGS is a simple big-leaf productivity model that sets upper limits on monthly gross primary productivity (GPP) by determining the amount of photosynthetically active radiation absorbed (APAR) by vegetation and the photosynthetic capacity (LUE) of the canopy. The utilized portion of APAR is calculated by reducing total PAR by an amount determined by the most constraining of a series of environmental modifiers that affect gas exchange through stomata. These include: (a) high daytime atmospheric VPD; (b) soil water availability; and (c) the frequency of sub-freezing temperatures (<-2 °C). Climate data including day length, precipitation, average temperature and vapor pressure deficit are obtained from the Daymet daily gridded surface data from Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL). The fraction of APAR is obtained from the MODIS terra/aqua combined product. Monthly surfaces were derived for the study period 2003-2008 spanning available MODIS and Climate datasets. Soil properties for the entire U.S.A., derived from luster analysis of STATSGO soil parameters, terrain and climate observations were obtained from ORNL. Oak savannas within this region are identified using the statewide Gap

  10. Chemical and Physical Weathering of Granites in a Semi-Arid Savanna

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khomo, L.; Hartshorn, A.; Chadwick, O.; Kurtz, A.; Heimsath, A.; Rogers, K.

    2005-12-01

    The catena concept describes soil properties on hillslopes and implies a hydrological mass redistribution process that has been applied differently in different parts of the Earth. In tectonically active regions, it is mostly used to describe the redistribution of mass by overland flow leading to thickening soil mantles downslope. This application is somewhat different from its initial and still popular usage in tectonically inactive areas of Africa, where it defines long-term soil property differentiation along hillslopes as controlled by internal soil hydrology as opposed to overland flow. Many ecologists have found the "African" catena concept to be useful as an organizing principal for savanna studies, but there has been little recent research on catenas per se in Africa. Elsewhere however, there is a growing body of research that places the concept ever more strongly into a landscape evolution context. Here, we apply these new approaches to catenas in a South African savanna underlain by a heterogeneous suite of Basement granites straddling a gradient in effective precipitation. We constrain the weathering extent of hilly terrains formed on these oldrocks by calculating element losses with solid-phase mass-balance calculations augmented by cosmogenic (26Al/10Be) derived rates of landscape denudation. We test the efficacy of Ti, Zr and Nb as immobile elements to benchmark chemical losses and gains in these semi-arid weathering environments. We also trace and quantify the abundance of the host minerals for these elements (Ti = rutile and ilmenite, Nb = columbite and Zr = zircon and baddleyite) in a variety of rocks in the basement complex. This analysis provides the boundary conditions for assigning immobile elements to parent materials required for the mass balance calculations. We calculate total denudation using the cosmogenic isotopes and then partition it into chemical and physical loss vectors using the mass balance calculations for representative

  11. Connecting above and below: the impacts of large wildlife loss and pastoralism on savanna carbon dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forbes, E. S.; Young, H. S.; Young, T.; Schimel, J.

    2016-12-01

    There is widespread evidence that large wildlife species contribute to ecosystem carbon efflux; however, their influence is not incorporated into traditional carbon models. As large wildlife loss continues in the Anthropocene and in the face of climate change, it becomes increasingly important to understand the impacts of their loss on ecosystem carbon. The charismatic, threatened wildlife in central Kenya's savanna provide an ideal framework for these questions. We compared differences in carbon efflux in the presence or absence of native herbivores and/or cattle, as a proxy for wildlife loss and the interaction of pastoralism. We measured carbon dynamics in situ with a closed-chamber system and microbial respiration rates in lab by incubating sampled soil. We discovered a significant effect of herbivore presence/absence on carbon efflux: incubated soils collected from plots with cattle only exhibit greater carbon accumulation and faster initial respiration rates than soils collected from plots with native herbivores and no cattle, native herbivores and cattle, and neither native herbivores nor cattle. When measured in situ, plots with no herbivores show higher efflux than plots with only native herbivores, and plots with both. The data also suggest that grazing pressure results in successively lower efflux. The differences in these studies imply that the impacts of large wildlife loss differ on microbial respiration as an isolated mechanism in ecosystem carbon exchange, and total carbon efflux. This is most likely because in situ efflux measurements encompass environmental variables as well as soil microbial respiration. The lab data suggest that cattle as the only herbivore causes greater soil microbial efflux compared to native herbivores alone, native herbivores with cattle, or no herbivores. The in situ data show that no herbivores results in increased carbon efflux, and suggest that increasing numbers of herbivores lowers efflux.These studies demonstrate

  12. Synergistic effects of fire and elephants on arboreal animals in an African savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pringle, Robert M; Kimuyu, Duncan M; Sensenig, Ryan L; Palmer, Todd M; Riginos, Corinna; Veblen, Kari E; Young, Truman P

    2015-11-01

    Disturbance is a crucial determinant of animal abundance, distribution and community structure in many ecosystems, but the ways in which multiple disturbance types interact remain poorly understood. The effects of multiple-disturbance interactions can be additive, subadditive or super-additive (synergistic). Synergistic effects in particular can accelerate ecological change; thus, characterizing such synergies, the conditions under which they arise, and how long they persist has been identified as a major goal of ecology. We factorially manipulated two principal sources of disturbance in African savannas, fire and elephants, and measured their independent and interactive effects on the numerically dominant vertebrate (the arboreal gekkonid lizard Lygodactylus keniensis) and invertebrate (a guild of symbiotic Acacia ants) animal species in a semi-arid Kenyan savanna. Elephant exclusion alone (minus fire) had negligible effects on gecko density. Fire alone (minus elephants) had negligible effects on gecko density after 4 months, but increased gecko density twofold after 16 months, likely because the decay of fire-damaged woody biomass created refuges and nest sites for geckos. In the presence of elephants, fire increased gecko density nearly threefold within 4 months of the experimental burn; this occurred because fire increased the incidence of elephant damage to trees, which in turn improved microhabitat quality for geckos. However, this synergistic positive effect of fire and elephants attenuated over the ensuing year, such that only the main effect of fire was evident after 16 months. Fire also altered the structure of symbiotic plant-ant assemblages occupying the dominant tree species (Acacia drepanolobium); this influenced gecko habitat selection but did not explain the synergistic effect of fire and elephants. However, fire-driven shifts in plant-ant occupancy may have indirectly mediated this effect by increasing trees' susceptibility to elephant damage. Our

  13. Divergent Hydraulic Safety Strategies in Three Co-occurring Anacardiaceae Tree Species in a Chinese Savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Shu-Bin; Zhang, Jiao-Lin; Cao, Kun-Fang

    2016-01-01

    Vulnerability segmentation, the condition under which plant leaves are more vulnerable to drought-induced cavitation than stems, may act as a "safety valve" to protect stems from hydraulic failure. Evergreen, winter-deciduous, and drought-deciduous tree species co-occur in tropical savannas, but there have been no direct studies on the role of vulnerability segmentation and stomatal regulation in maintaining hydraulic safety in trees with these three leaf phenologies. To this end, we selected three Anacardiaceae tree species co-occurring in a Chinese savanna, evergreen Pistacia weinmanniifolia , drought-deciduous Terminthia paniculata , and winter-deciduous Lannea coromandelica , to study inter-species differentiation in leaf and stem hydraulic safety. We found that the two deciduous species had significantly higher sapwood-specific hydraulic conductivity and leaf-specific hydraulic conductance than the evergreen species. Moreover, two deciduous species were more vulnerable to stem cavitation than the evergreen species, although both drought-deciduous species and evergreen species had drought-resistance leaves. The evergreen species maintained a wide hydraulic safety margin (HSM) in stems and leaves; which was achieved by embolism resistance of both stems and leaves and isohydric stomatal control. Both deciduous species had limited HSMs in stems and leaves, being isohydric in the winter-deciduous species and anisohydric in drought-deciduous species. The difference in water potential at 50% loss of hydraulic conductivity between the leaves and the terminal stems (P50 leaf-stem ) was positive in P. weinmanniifolia and L. coromandelica , whereas, T. paniculata exhibited a lack of vulnerability segmentation. In addition, differences in hydraulic architecture were found to be closely related to other structural traits, i.e., leaf mass per area, wood density, and sapwood anatomy. Overall, the winter-deciduous species exhibits a drought-avoidance strategy that maintains

  14. Savanna Vegetation Dynamics and their Influence on Landscape-Scale C, N, and P Biogeochemistry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boutton, T. W.; Zhou, Y.; Wu, X. B.; Hyodo, A.

    2017-12-01

    Soil carbon (C), nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) cycles are strongly interlinked and controlled through biological processes, and the P cycle is further controlled through geochemical processes. In grasslands, savannas, and other dryland ecosystems throughout the world, woody plant encroachment often modifies soil C, N, and P stores, although it remains unknown if these three elements change proportionally in response to this vegetation change. We evaluated proportional changes and spatial patterns of soil organic C (SOC), total N (TN), and total P (TP) following woody encroachment by taking spatially-explicit soil cores to a depth of 1.2 m across a subtropical savanna landscape which has undergone encroachment by trees and shrubs during the past century in the Rio Grande Plains, USA. SOC and TN were coupled with respect to increasing magnitudes and spatial patterns along the soil profile following woody encroachment. In contrast, TP increased slower than SOC and TN in surface soils, but faster in subsurface soils. Spatial patterns of TP strongly resembled those of vegetation cover throughout the soil profile, but differed from those of SOC and TN, especially in deeper portions of the profile. The encroachment of woody plants into this P-limited ecosystem resulted in the accumulation of proportionally less soil P compared to C and N in surface soils; however, proportionally more P accrued in deeper portions of the profile beneath woody patches where alkaline soil pH and high carbonate concentrations would favor precipitation of P as relatively insoluble calcium phosphates. Structural equation models (SEM) showed that fine root density explained the greatest proportion of variation in SOC, TN, and TP in the surface soil. In deeper portions of the profile, SEM showed that silt and clay explained much of the variation in SOC and TN, while soil pH strongly controlled TP. This imbalanced relationship highlights that the relative importance of biotic vs. abiotic

  15. Quantitative analysis of savanna wood species, in Teixeira, state of Paraiba, Brazil

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    José Adelmo Nunes Leite

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Savanna is the vegetation of semi-arid northeastern region of Brazil, which is largely determined by climate and topography. The municipality of Teixeira in the state of Paraiba presents hyperxerophilous shrub-arboreal caatinga land cover, which differs in size and density from those found in Sertaneja Depression, due to higher humidity. The objective of this work was to quantify forest remnant in the municipality of Teixeira, using geographic information system and forest inventory techniques. Native vegetation was mapped using satellite images, from November, 2008. Forest inventory was carried out in 40 sample plots (20 m × 20 m that were selected systematically. Height and diameter at 1.30 m from soil level (DBH were measured in every tree with DBH ≥ 10 cm. Each tree was identified by common and scientific names. A total of 4,911 trees were sampled, representing 46 species and 24 families that corresponds to 3,069 trees ha-1. The species with highest importance value (IV were: Croton sonderianus, Mimosa tenuiflora and Piptadenia stipulacea and the more important families were Euphorbiaceae, Mimosaceae and Caesalpinaceae. The municipality of Teixeira has its best preserved areas in mountainous regions with difficult access.

  16. ELASTOPLASTICIDAD DE UN SUELO FRANCO ARENOSO DE SABANA I SANDY LOAM SAVANNA SOIL ELASTOPLASTICITY

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    Américo Hossne García

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available The knowledge of elastoplastic properties is important for calculating soil elastic and plastic deformations experienced by static or dynamic loads generated, for example, by farm implements and root growth. The objective of this study was to determine the soil elastoplastic parameters: Young’s modulus (E, the shear modulus (G, bulk modulus (K and Poisson’s ratio (υ of a sandy-loam soil from a savanna in Monagas State, Venezuela. Triaxial tests and regression analyses were used to interpret the variance between them. The results show that E varied from 4693.39 to 36669.35 kPa; G from 700 to 5000 kPa; K from 500 to 2000 kPa and υ had a value of 0.50. It is concluded that these soils are incompressible under plastic conditions, i.e. easily deformable. The Poisson’s ratio varied significantly with soil water content. The Young modulus, bulk modulus and the shear modulus showed high variation with respect to water content. Both the Young’s modulus and Poisson’s ratio increased, at low soil water content, with the rise in chamber pressure .

  17. Hantavirus pulmonary syndrome and rodent reservoirs in the savanna-like biome of Brazil's southeastern region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Limongi, J E; Oliveira, R C; Guterres, A; Costa Neto, S F; Fernandes, J; Vicente, L H B; Coelho, M G; Ramos, V N; Ferreira, M S; Bonvicino, C R; D'Andrea, P S; Lemos, E R S

    2016-04-01

    This paper describes the diversity of rodent fauna in an area endemic for hantavirus cardiopulmonary syndrome (HCPS) in Brazil, the population dynamics and the relationship of rodents with hantavirus in the Cerrado (savanna-like) biome. Additionally, an analysis is made of the partial S segment sequences of the hantaviruses obtained from serologically confirmed human HCPS cases and from rodent specimens. Rodents were collected during four campaigns. Human serum samples were collected from suspected cases of HCPS at hospitals in the state of Minas Gerais. The samples antibody-reactive by ELISA were processed by RT-PCR. The PCR product was amplified and sequenced. Hantavirus was detected only in Necromys lasiurus, the wild rodent species most prevalent in the Cerrado biome (min-max: 50-83·7%). All the six human serum samples were hantavirus seropositive and five showed amplified PCR products. The analysis of the nucleotide sequences showed the circulation of a single genotype, the Araraquara hantavirus. The environmental changes that have occurred in the Cerrado biome in recent decades have favoured N. lasiurus in interspecific competition of habitats, thus increasing the risk of contact between humans and rodent species infected with hantavirus. Our data corroborate the definition of N. lasiurus as the main hantavirus reservoir in the Cerrado biome.

  18. High frequency of trypanosomatids in gallery forest bats of a Neotropical savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lourenço, João Lucas M; Minuzzi-Souza, Thaís T C; Silva, Larissa R; Oliveira, Amanda C; Mendonça, Vagner J; Nitz, Nadjar; Aguiar, Ludmilla M S; Gurgel-Gonçalves, Rodrigo

    2018-01-01

    Bats are well-known hosts of trypanosomatids, though information about their role as reservoirs of these protozoans in the Brazilian savanna is poorly known. We aimed to analyze the occurrence of trypanosomatid species in bats occurring in remnants of gallery forests of Brasília, Federal District of Brazil. We sampled bats using mist nets in six sites, and we collected blood, wing fragments and oral swab samples from all captured individuals. Trypanosomatids were identified in the captured bats through sequencing of the SSUrRNA region and kDNA qPCR. We found no parasite in blood smears of 146 individuals of 14 species captured, but blood cultures were positive for nine bats. We detected trypanosomatids molecularly in 111 (76%) specimens of all bat species in the studied areas. Most of the infected bats had Leishmania-like DNA detected in blood and swab samples of the oral mucosa. We distinguished three species of Trypanosoma (Trypanosoma dionisii, T. rangeli and T. cruzi) in Carollia perspicillata. SSUrRNA PCR of oral samples is a non-invasive and practical method for identification of trypanosomatid species in bats. Our results support our belief that bats could be potential reservoirs for Trypanosoma and Leishmania-like species in the enzootic cycle of these parasites in gallery forests of the Brazilian Cerrado biome. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Comparative responses of the Savanna grasses Cenchrus ciliaris and Themeda triandra to defoliation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hodgkinson, K C; Ludlow, M M; Mott, J J; Baruch, Z

    1989-04-01

    Two perennial tussock grasses of savannas were compared in a glasshouse study to determine why they differed in their ability to withstand frequent, heavy grazing; Cenchrus ciliaris is tolerant and Themeda triandra is intolerant of heavy grazing. Frequent defoliation at weekly intervals for six weeks reduced shoot biomass production over a subsequent 42 day regrowth period compared with previously undefoliated plants (infrequent) in T. triandra, but not in C. ciliaris. Leaf area of T. triandra expanded rapidly following defoliation but high initial relative growth rates of shoots were not sustained after 14 days of regrowth because of reducing light utilising efficiency of leaves. Frequently defoliated plants were slower in rate of leaf area expansion and this was associated with reduced photosynthetic capacity of newly formed leaves, lower allocation of photosynthate to leaves but not lower tiller numbers. T. triandra appears well adapted to a regime where defoliation is sufficiently infrequent to allow carbon to be fixed to replace that used in initial leaf area expansion. In contrast, C. ciliaris is better adapted to frequent defoliation than is T. triandra, because horizontally orientated nodal tillers are produced below the defoliation level. This morphological adaptation resulted in a 10-fold higher leaf area remaining after defoliation compared with similarly defoliated T. triandra, which together with the maintenance of moderate levels of light utilising efficiency, contributed to the higher leaf area and shoot weight throughout the regrowth period.

  20. Characterization of the Roraima savanna across of X-ray diffraction, thermomagnetic analysis and Moessbauer spectroscopy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Silva, Gilmar A.; Araujo, R.C.; Sergio, C.S. [Universidade Federal de Roraima (UFRR), Boa Vista, RR (Brazil)

    2012-07-01

    Full text: The technique of X-ray diffraction has great resolving power to determine the phases present in crystalline material, thereby enabling it to determine the elements present in the materials as well as changes in structure that they can suffer when subjected to various physical processes and/or chemical means. The research had as objective to characterize the mineralogy of iron oxides, silicon, aluminum and other minerals in the soil of five points of the Roraima savannah. The points where samples were collected are five municipalities in the state of Roraima. The area of sampling is part of the savanna in Roraima. The samples were collected. We analyzed samples from five points from the collection of natural soil in the locations listed. The samples were placed in a mill to a uniform grain size. After the milling process, the magnetic material was separated using a permanent magnet. Then the samples were analyzed by x-ray diffraction, thermomagnetic analysis and Moessbauer spectroscopy. Preliminary results of XRD showed the occurrence of phases of oxides of iron, silicon, aluminum and other phases less. Thermomagnetic analysis show that the magnetic phases are magnetite and hematite. The results of the Moessbauer spectroscopy indicates the reliability in the two prior art and confirmed the presence of the phases of oxides of iron present in the soil analyzed. (author)

  1. Large herbivore population performance and climate in a South African semi-arid savanna

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    Armin H. Seydack

    2012-02-01

    Interpretation according to a climate–vegetation response model suggested that acclimation of forage plants to increasing temperature had resulted in temperature-enhanced plant productivity, initially increasing food availability and supporting transient synchronous increases in population abundance of both blue wildebeest and zebra, and selective grazers. As acclimation of plants to concurrently rising minimum (nocturnal temperature (Tmin took effect, adjustments in metabolic functionality occurred involving accelerated growth activity at the cost of storage-based metabolism. Growth-linked nitrogen dilution and reduced carbon-nutrient quality of forage then resulted in phases of subsequently declining herbivore populations. Over the long term (1910–2010, progressive plant functionality shifts towards accelerated metabolic growth rather than storage priority occurred in response to Tmin rising faster than maximum temperature (Tmax, thereby cumulatively compromising the carbon-nutrient quality of forage, a key resource for selective grazers. The results of analyses thus revealed consistency between herbivore population trends and levels of forage quantity and quality congruent with expected plant metabolic responses to climate effects. Thus, according to the climate-vegetation response model, climate effects were implicated as the ultimate cause of large herbivore population performance in space and over time. Conservation implications: In its broadest sense, the objective of this study was to contribute towards the enhanced understanding of landscape-scale functioning of savanna systems with regard to the interplay between climate, vegetation and herbivore population dynamics.

  2. Fire effects on the composition of a bird community in an amazonian Savanna (Brazil

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    R. Cintra

    Full Text Available The effects of fire on the composition of a bird community were investigated in an Amazonian savanna near Alter-do-Chão, Pará (Brazil. Mist-net captures and visual counts were used to assess species richness and bird abundance pre- and post-fire in an approximately 20 ha area. Visual counts along transects were used to survey birds in an approximately 2000 ha area in a nearby area. Results using the same method of ordination analysis (multidimensional scaling showed significant effects of fire in the 20 ha and 2000 ha areas and strongly suggest direct effects on bird community composition. However, the effects were different at different spatial scales and/or in different years, indicating that the effects of fire vary spatially and/or temporally. Bird community composition pre-fire was significantly different from that found post-fire. Using multiple regression analysis it was found that the numbers of burned and unburned trees were not significantly related to either bird species richness or bird abundance. Two months after the fire, neither bird species richness nor bird abundance was significantly related to the number of flowering trees (Lafoensia pacari or fruiting trees (Byrsonima crassifolia. Since fire is an annual event in Alter-do-Chão and is becoming frequent in the entire Amazon, bird community composition in affected areas could be constantly changing in time and space.

  3. Antioxidant activity and phenolic content of leaf infusions of Myrtaceae species from Cerrado (Brazilian Savanna

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    L. K. Takao

    Full Text Available Abstract There is considerable interest in identifying new antioxidants from plant materials. Several studies have emphasized the antioxidant activity of species belonging to the Myrtaceae family. However, there are few reports on these species from the Cerrado (Brazilian savanna. In this study, the antioxidant activity and phenolic content of 12 native Myrtaceae species from the Cerrado were evaluated (Blepharocalyx salicifolius, Eugenia bimarginata, Eugenia dysenterica, Eugenia klotzschiana, Hexachlamys edulis, Myrcia bella, Myrcia lingua, Myrcia splendens, Myrcia tomentosa, Psidium australe, Psidium cinereum, and Psidium laruotteanum. Antioxidant potential was assessed using the antioxidant activity index (AAI by the DPPH method and total phenolic content (TPC by the Folin–Ciocalteu assay. There was a high correlation between TPC and AAI values. Psidium laruotteanum showed the highest TPC (576.56 mg GAE/g extract and was the most potent antioxidant (AAI = 7.97, IC50 = 3.86 µg·mL−1, with activity close to that of pure quercetin (IC50 = 2.99 µg·mL−1. The extracts of nine species showed IC50 of 6.24–8.75 µg·mL−1. Most species showed TPC and AAI values similar to or higher than those for Camellia sinensis, a commonly consumed tea with strong antioxidant properties. The results reveal that the analyzed Myrtaceae species from the Cerrado possess high phenolic contents and antioxidant activities. Thus, they are a potential source of new natural antioxidants.

  4. Nutritional composition and protein value of the baru (Dipteryx alata Vog.) almond from the Brazilian Savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernandes, Daniela C; Freitas, Jullyana B; Czeder, Ludmila P; Naves, Maria Margareth V

    2010-08-15

    The almond of the baru tree (Dipteryx alata Vog.), a native species of the Brazilian Savanna, is used in the gastronomy of the central western region of the country. There is relatively little information about the chemical composition and nutritional value of the baru almond, which was the motivation for this research. The baru almonds had high lipid (397-437 g kg(-1)) and protein (238-281 g kg(-1)) contents. There were differences in the amino acid score (AAS = 83-103%) and limiting amount of sulfur amino acids, depending on the origin of the almond. The protein value of the baru almond was higher than that of the peanut according to the relative net protein ratio (RNPR(Baru) = 74%, RNPR(Peanut) = 66%) and the protein digestibility-corrected amino acid score (PDCAAS). The baru almond also had high iron (mean 48.1 mg kg(-1)), zinc (mean 46.6 mg kg(-1)) and dietary fibre (mean 115.8 g kg(-1)) contents in relation to Dietary Reference Intakes. The baru almond has a high nutrient density and high content of quality protein. Furthermore, the lipid and protein contents and amino acid profile of the baru almond are representative of edible seeds and similar to those of true nuts. This almond can be used as a complementary source of protein and as an excellent option for a healthy diet. Copyright (c) 2010 Society of Chemical Industry.

  5. Floristic and phytosociological analysis of palm swamps in the central part of the Brazilian savanna

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    Isa Lucia de Morais Resende

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available We analyzed the floristics and phytosociology of three palm swamps in the municipality of Bela Vista de Goiás, located in the state of Goiás, Brazil, in the central part of the Brazilian savanna (Cerrado. The floristic surveys were conducted monthly from May 2008 to April 2009, and 310 species were recorded (seven bryophytes, 15 ferns and 288 angiosperms. Bryophytes belonged to five genera and five families; ferns belonged to nine genera and nine families; and angiosperms belonged to 134 genera and 45 families. The angiosperm families with the highest species richness were Poaceae, Cyperaceae, Asteraceae, Eriocaulaceae, Xyridaceae, Lentibulariaceae, Melastomataceae, Rubiaceae and Fabaceae. The palm swamps were divided into three zones of increasing humidity: edge, middle and core. The number of species was higher in the middle than at the edge and the core. The families with the highest cover values were Cyperaceae, Melastomataceae, Arecaceae and Poaceae. Although the palm swamps had been disturbed to varying degrees, those disturbances did not affect the flora in the middle or the core. Floristic similarity was high between these two zones within a given palm swamp and low between the edges of different palm swamps.

  6. Human impacts flatten rainforest-savanna gradient and reduce adaptive diversity in a rainforest bird.

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    Adam H Freedman

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Ecological gradients have long been recognized as important regions for diversification and speciation. However, little attention has been paid to the evolutionary consequences or conservation implications of human activities that fundamentally change the environmental features of such gradients. Here we show that recent deforestation in West Africa has homogenized the rainforest-savanna gradient, causing a loss of adaptive phenotypic diversity in a common rainforest bird, the little greenbul (Andropadus virens. Previously, this species was shown to exhibit morphological and song divergence along this gradient in Central Africa. Using satellite-based estimates of forest cover, recent morphological data, and historical data from museum specimens collected prior to widespread deforestation, we show that the gradient has become shallower in West Africa and that A. virens populations there have lost morphological variation in traits important to fitness. In contrast, we find no loss of morphological variation in Central Africa where there has been less deforestation and gradients have remained more intact. While rainforest deforestation is a leading cause of species extinction, the potential of deforestation to flatten gradients and inhibit rainforest diversification has not been previously recognized. More deforestation will likely lead to further flattening of the gradient and loss of diversity, and may limit the ability of species to persist under future environmental conditions.

  7. Three new species of the killifish genus Melanorivulus from the central Brazilian Cerrado savanna (Cyprinodontiformes, Aplocheilidae

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    Wilson J.E.M. Costa

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Three new species are described from the Neotropical region comprising the Cerrado savannas of the central Brazilian plateaus, which is among the most important biodiversity centres in the world. These species are considered closely related to M. dapazi from the same region, with which they share the presence of a rudimentary interarcual cartilage and a dark reddish brown distal margin on the male anal fin. The group comprising M. dapazi and the three new species is here named as the M. dapazi species group. Melanorivulus ignescens sp. n., from the upper Rio Araguaia basin, is distinguished from all other species of the M. dapazi group by the anal-fin colour pattern in males; M. flavipinnis sp. n. and M. regularis sp. n. from the Rio Paraguai basin are distinguished from all other congeners of the M. dapazi group by the colour pattern of the caudal fin and number of scales in the longitudinal series, respectively. All the new species are further unambiguously diagnosed by unique combinations of morphological characters, including meristic and morphometric data, and colour patterns. This study reinforces the importance of using live colour patterns to diagnose species and species groups of the genus Melanorivulus, but also indicates that osteological characters may be informative for species diagnosis. This study confirms the high diversity of species of Melanorivulus in the central Brazilian Cerrado plateaus already reported in previous studies, indicating that endemic species are often restricted to short segments of a single river drainage.

  8. Analysis of stable states in global savannas: is the CART pulling the horse?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanan, Niall P; Tredennick, Andrew T; Prihodko, Lara; Bucini, Gabriela; Dohn, Justin

    2014-03-01

    Multiple stable states, bifurcations and thresholds are fashionable concepts in the ecological literature, a recognition that complex ecosystems may at times exhibit the interesting dynamic behaviours predicted by relatively simple biomathematical models. Recently, several papers in Global Ecology and Biogeography , Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA, Science and elsewhere have attempted to quantify the prevalence of alternate stable states in the savannas of Africa, Australia and South America, and the tundra-taiga-grassland transitions of the circum-boreal region using satellite-derived woody canopy cover. While we agree with the logic that basins of attraction can be inferred from the relative frequencies of ecosystem states observed in space and time, we caution that the statistical methodologies underlying the satellite product used in these studies may confound our ability to infer the presence of multiple stable states. We demonstrate this point using a uniformly distributed 'pseudo-tree cover' database for Africa that we use to retrace the steps involved in creation of the satellite tree-cover product and subsequent analysis. We show how classification and regression tree (CART)-based products may impose discontinuities in satellite tree-cover estimates even when such discontinuities are not present in reality. As regional and global remote sensing and geospatial data become more easily accessible for ecological studies, we recommend careful consideration of how error distributions in remote sensing products may interact with the data needs and theoretical expectations of the ecological process under study.

  9. Climatic changes can drive the loss of genetic diversity in a Neotropical savanna tree species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lima, Jacqueline S; Ballesteros-Mejia, Liliana; Lima-Ribeiro, Matheus S; Collevatti, Rosane G

    2017-11-01

    The high rates of future climatic changes, compared with the rates reported for past changes, may hamper species adaptation to new climates or the tracking of suitable conditions, resulting in significant loss of genetic diversity. Trees are dominant species in many biomes and because they are long-lived, they may not be able to cope with ongoing climatic changes. Here, we coupled ecological niche modelling (ENM) and genetic simulations to forecast the effects of climatic changes on the genetic diversity and the structure of genetic clusters. Genetic simulations were conditioned to climatic variables and restricted to plant dispersal and establishment. We used a Neotropical savanna tree as species model that shows a preference for hot and drier climates, but with low temperature seasonality. The ENM predicts a decreasing range size along the more severe future climatic scenario. Additionally, genetic diversity and allelic richness also decrease with range retraction and climatic genetic clusters are lost for both future scenarios, which will lead genetic variability to homogenize throughout the landscape. Besides, climatic genetic clusters will spatially reconfigure on the landscape following displacements of climatic conditions. Our findings indicate that climate change effects will challenge population adaptation to new environmental conditions because of the displacement of genetic ancestry clusters from their optimal conditions. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  10. Contribution to the discussions on the origin of the cerrado biome: Brazilian savanna

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    MHO. Pinheiro

    Full Text Available Theories that attempt to explain the origin of the cerrado biome are mostly based on the isolated action of three major factors: climate, fire and soil. Another factor that has been mentioned is that of human interference. We hypothesise that the evolutionary origin of this biome resulted from the complex interaction of climate, fire and soil, with climate being the triggering agent of this assumed interaction. Fire, as well as acid and dystrophic soils, would be factors involved in the selection of savanna species throughout climatic events, during the Tertiary and the Quaternary, e.g. Pliocene and Pleistocene. The genesis of the physiognomies that would give rise to cerrado sensu lato, rather than forest formations, could have occurred due to the strong pressure exerted by the reduction in water availability, and the selection of the species adapted to the new conditions imposed by the environment. The characteristics of cerrado sensu lato soil, originated from edaphic impoverishment caused by lixiviation and successive past fires, would remain, even after hydric availability increased following the Pleistocene glaciations.

  11. The initial phase of a Longleaf Pine-Wiregrass Savanna restoration: species establishment and community responses.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Aschenbach, Todd, A; Foster, Bryan, L.; Imm, Donald, W.

    2010-09-01

    AbstractAbstract The significant loss of the longleaf pine-wiregrass ecosystem in the southeastern United States has serious implications for biodiversity and ecosystem functioning. In response to this loss, we have initiated a long-term and landscape-scale restoration experiment at the 80,125 ha (310 mi2) Department of Energy Savannah River Site (SRS) located near Aiken, South Carolina. Aristida beyrichiana (wiregrass), an important and dominant grass (i.e., a “matrix” species) of the longleaf pine savanna understory, and 31 other herbaceous “non-matrix” species were planted at six locations throughout SRS in 2002 and 2003. Of the 36,056 transplanted seedlings, 75% were still alive in June 2004, while mean 1–2 year survival across all planted species was 48%. Lespedeza hirta (hairy lespedeza) exhibited the greatest overall survival per 3 ×3 m cell at 95%, whereas Schizachyrium spp. (little bluestem) exhibited the greatest mean cover among individual species at 5.9%. Wiregrass survival and cover were significantly reduced when planted with non-matrix species. Aggregate cover of all planted species in restored cells averaged 25.9% in 2006. High rates of survival and growth of the planted species resulted in greater species richness (SR), diversity, and vegetative cover in restored cells. Results suggest that the loss of the longleaf pine-wiregrass ecosystem may be ameliorated through restoration efforts and illustrate the positive impact of restoration plantings on biodiversity and vegetative cover.

  12. Legacy phosphorus and no tillage agriculture in tropical oxisols of the Brazilian savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodrigues, Marcos; Pavinato, Paulo Sergio; Withers, Paul John Anthony; Teles, Ana Paula Bettoni; Herrera, Wilfrand Ferney Bejarano

    2016-01-15

    Crop production in the Brazilian Cerrado is limited by soil phosphorus (P) supply without large inputs of inorganic P fertilizer, which may become more costly and scarce in the future. Reducing dependency on fertilizer P requires a greater understanding of soil P supply in the highly weathered soils in this important agricultural region. We investigated the impact of no tillage (NT) and conventional tillage (CT) agriculture on accumulated (legacy) soil P and P forms in four long-term sites. Compared to the native savanna soils, tilled soils receiving regular annual P fertilizer inputs (30-50 kg P ha(-1)) increased all forms of inorganic and organic P, except highly recalcitrant P associated with the background lithology. However, 70-85% of the net added P was bound in moderately labile and non-labile forms associated with Fe/Al oxyhydroxides rather than in plant available forms. Under NT agriculture, organic P forms and labile and non-labile inorganic P forms were all significantly (Pagriculture. The contribution of organic P cycling in these tropical soils increased after conversion to agriculture and was proportionally greater under NT. The results highlight the large amounts of unutilized legacy P present in Brazil's Cerrado soils that could be better exploited to reduce dependency on imports of finite phosphate rock. No tillage agriculture confers a positive albeit relatively small benefit for soil P availability and overall soil function. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. Analysis of farmers’ adaptation to weather extremes in West African Sudan Savanna

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Boansi

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available There have been recent incidences of weather extremes in the West African Sudan Savanna and farmers have responded through implementation of relevant adaptation strategies. For a deeper insight into farmers’ adaptation to climatic shocks, this study documents farmers’ perception of recent changes in the local climate, and identifies factors that influence the number and choice of strategies implemented. Interdependencies among strategies are explored and joint and marginal probabilities of adoption estimated. Upper East Ghana and Southwest Burkina Faso are used as the case study regions. These regions were selected due to extreme reliance of inhabitants on agriculture for sustenance, and their recent exposure to weather extremes. Through estimation of a Poisson regression and multivariate probit model to identify the major factors that influence the number and choice of strategies adopted, we discover that, limited access to credit, markets, and extension services, smaller cropland area, and low level of mechanization could impede effective adaptation to weather extremes. To enhance farmers’ adaptive capacity, policy makers and various stakeholders need to contribute towards improving farmers’ access to credit, markets, and extension services, and implement measures to promote mechanization.

  14. The long term recovery of heat and moisture fluxes to the atmosphere following fire in Australia's tropical savanna

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tapper, N.; Beringer, J.; Hutley, L.; Coutts, A.

    2003-04-01

    Fire is probably the greatest natural and anthropogenic environmental disturbance in Australia's tropical savannas, with the vast area burned each year (up to 250,000 km^2) likely to increase with predicted regional climate change. Globally savanna ecosystems cover 11.5% of the global landscape (Scholes and Hall 1996). As much as 75% of this landscape burns annually (Hao et al., 1990), accounting for more than 40% of all global biomass consumed (Hao and Ward 1993). These landscape-scale fires undoubtedly have massive impacts on regional water, energy and carbon dioxide exchanges and as a result may have important feedbacks to the atmosphere and regional climate. Fire may influence climate directly through the emission of smoke and trace gases from burning, but there are other important impacts of fire that may affect the atmosphere. Fire and the subsequent fire scars are likely to radically alter the surface energy budgets of tropical savannas through reduced surface albedo, increased available energy for partitioning into the convective fluxes, and increased substrate heat flux. The aerodynamic and biological properties of the ecosystem may also change, affecting surface-atmosphere coupling. There is a clear potential to influence atmospheric motion and moist convection at a range of scales. Potential fire scar impacts such as those mentioned above have previously been largely ignored and are the focus of the Savanna Fire Experiment (SAFE). Tower measurements of radiation, heat, moisture and CO_2 fluxes above burned and unburned savanna near Darwin, Australia, were initiated in August 2001 to observe the impacts of fire and fire scarring on flux exchange with the atmosphere, along with the longer term post-fire recovery of fluxes. Intensive field campaigns were mounted in the dry (fire) seasons of both 2001 and 2002, with flux recovery observed into the each of the subsequent monsoon seasons. Results and an early analysis of the time series of heat and moisture

  15. Spatial Patterns of Fire Recurrence Using Remote Sensing and GIS in the Brazilian Savanna: Serra do Tombador Nature Reserve, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gabriel Antunes Daldegan

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available The Cerrado is the second largest biome in Brazil after the Amazon and is the savanna with the highest biodiversity in the world. Serra Tombador Natural Reserve (STNR is the largest private reserve located in Goiás State, and the fourth largest in the Cerrado biome. The present study aimed to map the burnt areas and to describe the spatial patterns of fire recurrence and its interactions with the classes of land-cover that occurred in STNR and its surroundings in the period between 2001 and 2010. Several Landsat TM images acquired around the months of July, August and September, coinciding with the region’s dry season when fire events intensify, were employed to monitor burnt areas. Fire scars were mapped using the supervised Mahalanobis-distance classifier and further refined using expert visual interpretation. Burnt area patterns were described by spatial landscape metrics. The effects of fire on landscape structure were obtained by comparing results among different land-cover classes, and results summarized in terms of fire history and frequencies. During the years covered by the study, 69% of the areas analyzed had fire events. The year with the largest burnt area was 2004, followed by 2001, 2007 and 2010. Thus, the largest fire events occurred in a 3-year cycle, which is compatible with other areas of the Brazilian savanna. The regions with higher annual probabilities of fire recurrence occur in the buffer zone around the park. The year 2004 also had the highest number of burnt area patches (831. In contrast, the burnt area in 2007 showed the most extensive fires with low number of patches (82. The physiognomies that suffered most fires were the native savanna formations. The study also identified areas where fires are frequently recurrent, highlighting priority areas requiring special attention. Thus, the methodology adopted in this study assists in monitoring and recovery of areas affected by fire over time.

  16. Spatial and temporal soil moisture resource partitioning by trees and grasses in a temperate savanna, Arizona, USA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weltzin, Jake F; McPherson, Guy R

    1997-10-01

    Stable isotope analysis was used to determine sources of water used by coexisting trees and grasses in a temperate savanna dominated by Quercus emoryi Torr. We predicted that (1) tree seedlings and bunchgrasses utilize shallow sources of soil water, (2) mature savanna trees use deeper sources of water, and (3) trees switch from shallow to deep water sources within 1 year of germination. We found that Q. emoryi trees, saplings, and seedlings (about 2 months, 1 year, and 2 years old), and the dominant bunchgrass [Trachypogon montufari (H.B.K.) Nees.] utilized seasonally available moisture from different depths within the soil profile depending on size/age relationships. Sapling and mature Q. emoryi acquired water from >50 cm deep, 2-month-old seedlings utilized water from emoryi within extant stands of native grasses. The potential for subsequent interaction between Q. emoryi and native grasses was evidenced by similar patterns of soil water use by 1- and 2-year-old seedlings and grasses. Q. emoryi seedlings did not switch from shallow to deep sources of soil water within 2 years of germination: water use by these seedlings apparently becomes independent of water use by grasses after 2 years of age. Finally, older trees (saplings, mature trees) use water from deeper soil layers than grasses, which may facilitate the stable coexistence of mature trees and grasses. Potential shifts in the seasonality of precipitation may alter interactions between woody plants and grasses within temperate savannas characterized by bimodal precipitation regimes: reductions in summer precipitation or soil moisture may be particularly detrimental to warm-season grasses and seedlings of Q. emoryi.

  17. Allometric convergence in savanna trees and implications for the use of plant scaling models in variable ecosystems.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew T Tredennick

    Full Text Available Theoretical models of allometric scaling provide frameworks for understanding and predicting how and why the morphology and function of organisms vary with scale. It remains unclear, however, if the predictions of 'universal' scaling models for vascular plants hold across diverse species in variable environments. Phenomena such as competition and disturbance may drive allometric scaling relationships away from theoretical predictions based on an optimized tree. Here, we use a hierarchical Bayesian approach to calculate tree-specific, species-specific, and 'global' (i.e. interspecific scaling exponents for several allometric relationships using tree- and branch-level data harvested from three savanna sites across a rainfall gradient in Mali, West Africa. We use these exponents to provide a rigorous test of three plant scaling models (Metabolic Scaling Theory (MST, Geometric Similarity, and Stress Similarity in savanna systems. For the allometric relationships we evaluated (diameter vs. length, aboveground mass, stem mass, and leaf mass the empirically calculated exponents broadly overlapped among species from diverse environments, except for the scaling exponents for length, which increased with tree cover and density. When we compare empirical scaling exponents to the theoretical predictions from the three models we find MST predictions are most consistent with our observed allometries. In those situations where observations are inconsistent with MST we find that departure from theory corresponds with expected tradeoffs related to disturbance and competitive interactions. We hypothesize savanna trees have greater length-scaling exponents than predicted by MST due to an evolutionary tradeoff between fire escape and optimization of mechanical stability and internal resource transport. Future research on the drivers of systematic allometric variation could reconcile the differences between observed scaling relationships in variable ecosystems and

  18. Impact of communal land use and conservation on woody vegetation structure in the Lowveld savannas of South Africa – Lidar results

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Wessels, Konrad J

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available use and conservation on woody vegetation structure in the Lowveld savannas of South Africa ? Lidar results. K.J. Wesselsa*, R. Mathieub, B.F.N. Erasmusc, G.P. Asnerd, I.P.J. Smite, J.A.N. Van Aardtf, R. Mainb, J. Fisherb,c a Remote Sensing... with related studies, suggest that communal land use have a higher impact on the woody cover below 5m than both elephants and fire. Keywords: Carnegie Airborne Observatory (CAO), Lidar, fuel wood, South Africa, Savannas, woody vegetation structure 1...

  19. Climate-biomes, pedo-biomes and pyro-biomes: which world view explains the tropical forest - savanna boundary in South America?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langan, Liam; Higgins, Steven; Scheiter, Simon

    2015-04-01

    Elucidating the drivers of broad vegetation formations improves our understanding of earth system functioning. The biome, defined primarily by the dominance of a particular growth strategy, is commonly employed to group vegetation into similar units. Predicting tropical forest and savanna biome boundaries in South America has proven difficult. Process based DGVMs (Dynamic global vegetation models) are our best tool to simulate vegetation patterns, make predictions for future changes and test theory, however, many DGVMs fail to accurately simulate the spatial distribution or indeed presence of the South American savanna biome which can result in large differences in modelled ecosystem structural properties. Evidence suggests fire plays a significant role in mediating these forest and savanna biome boundaries, however, fire alone does not appear to be sufficient to predict these boundaries in South America using DGVMs hinting at the presence of one or more missing environmental factors. We hypothesise that soil depth, which affects plant available water by determining maximum storage potential and influences temporal availability, may be one of these missing environmental factors. To test our hypothesis we use a novel vegetation model, the aDGVM2. This model has been specifically designed to allow plant trait strategies, constrained by trade-offs between traits, evolve based on the abiotic and biotic conditions where the resulting community trait suites are emergent properties of model dynamics. Furthermore it considers root biomass in multiple soil layers and therefore allows the consideration of alternative rooting strategies, which in turn allows us to explore in more detail the role of soil hydraulic factors in controlling biome boundary distributions. We find that changes in soil depth, interacting with fire, affect the relative dominance of tree and grass strategies and thus the presence and spatial distribution of forest and savanna biomes in South America

  20. Palaeovegetation dynamics of an ecotone forest-savanna in southern Brazilian Amazon during the late Pleistocene and Holocene based on carbon isotopes of soil organic matter

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pessenda, L.C.R.; Gouveia, S.E.M.; Freitas, H.A. de; Bendassoli, J.A.; Gomes, B.M.; Aravena, R.; Ribeiro, A.S.; Boulet, R.

    2002-01-01

    This study was carried out in the Brazilian southern Amazon region (Rondonia state and Humaita, southern Amazon state). Carbon isotope data on soil organic matter have been collected along an ecosystem transect of about 750 km that includes a savanna, a wooded savanna (cerrado), a tropical semideciduous forest (cerradao), a forest transition type and a tropical forest. The main objective is to evaluate the expansion-regression dynamics of these vegetation units in relation to climate changes during the Late Pleistocene (Late Glacial) and Holocene. Large ranges in δ 13 values were observed in soil organic matter collected from profiles in the savanna (-27 to -14 per mille and forest regions (-26 to -19 per mille) reflecting changing distribution of 13 C-depleted C 3 forest and 13 C enriched C 4 savanna vegetation in response to climate change. 14 C data of humin fraction and buried charcoal indicate that the organic matter in these soils is at least 17,000 years BP at 300-cm depth. In this period, the entire ecosystem transect are characterized by δ 13 C soil depth profiles, generated typically by C 3 plants (forest), inferring a humid climate in the southern Amazon region after the end of last glaciation. 13 C data also indicate that C 4 plants (grasses) have influenced significantly the vegetation at the transitional forest and the cerrado sites of southern Rondonia state and two distinct points in the forest ecosystem in the southern Amazon state. These typical C 4 type isotopic signatures probably reflect a drier climate during about 9000-8000 yr BP to 3000 yr BP and the savanna and wooded savanna expansion in distinct points of the transect. The 13 C records representing the 3000 yr show an expansion of the forest, due to a climatic improvement, in areas previously occupied by savanna vegetation. This study adds to the mounting evidence that extensive forested areas existed in the Amazon during the last glacial and that savanna vegetation expanded in response

  1. Greenhouse gas exchange in West African savanna ecosystems - how important are emissions from termite mounds?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brümmer, C.; Brüggemann, N.

    2012-04-01

    Savannas cover large areas of the Earth's surface and play an important role in global carbon and nitrogen cycling. In this study, we present the soil-atmosphere exchange of N2O, CH4, and CO2 during two field campaigns throughout the growing seasons 2005 and 2006 at a natural savanna site that was not subject to human disturbances except for annual burning, and four agricultural sites planted with sorghum (n=2), cotton and peanut in Burkina Faso. The annual N2O emission of the nature reserve site amounted to 0.52 kg N2O-N ha-1 yr-1 in 2005 and to 0.67 kg N2O-N ha-1 yr-1 in 2006, whereas the calculated average annual N2O release of the crop sites was only 0.19 and 0.20 kg N2O-N ha-1 yr-1 in 2005 and 2006, respectively. As a result of a temporal up-scaling approach, a lower bound of annual N2O release could be given for two fertilized sorghum plots, that is, 0.83 kg N2O-N ha-1 yr-1 for a highly fertilized plot and 0.44 kg N2O-N ha-1 yr-1 for a moderately fertilized plot. During the rainy season both CH4 uptake in the range of up to 20 μg CH4-C m-2 h-1 as well as CH4 emission up to 300 μg CH4-C m-2 h-1 were observed at the nature reserve site, which was on average a CH4 source of 87.4 and 30.8 μg CH4-C m-2 h-1 in 2005 and 2006, respectively. All crop sites were on average weak CH4 sinks without significant seasonal variation. Uptake rates ranged between 2.5 and 8.7 μg CH4-C m-2 h-1. Occasionally very low net CH4 emission was observed after heavy rainfall events. Mean annual CH4 rates could be estimated to 2.48 kg CH4-C ha-1 yr-1 and -0.68 kg CH4-C ha-1 yr-1 for the nature reserve site and the crop sites, respectively. Trace gas emissions from termite (Cubitermes fungifaber) mounds that were almost exclusively found at the nature reserve were one order of magnitude higher for N2O and CO2, and two orders of magnitude higher for CH4 than soil emissions of the respective trace gas. Termite N2O, CH4 and CO2 release at the nature reserve contributed only 3.2%, 8.1% and

  2. High spatial resolution mapping of land cover types in a priority area for conservation in the Brazilian savanna

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ribeiro, F.; Roberts, D. A.; Hess, L. L.; Davis, F. W.; Caylor, K. K.; Nackoney, J.; Antunes Daldegan, G.

    2017-12-01

    Savannas are heterogeneous landscapes consisting of highly mixed land cover types that lack clear distinct boundaries. The Brazilian Cerrado is a Neotropical savanna considered a biodiversity hotspot for conservation due to its biodiversity richness and rapid transformation of its landscape by crop and pasture activities. The Cerrado is one of the most threatened Brazilian biomes and only 2.2% of its original extent is strictly protected. Accurate mapping and monitoring of its ecosystems and adjacent land use are important to select areas for conservation and to improve our understanding of the dynamics in this biome. Land cover mapping of savannas is difficult due to spectral similarity between land cover types resulting from similar vegetation structure, floristically similar components, generalization of land cover classes, and heterogeneity usually expressed as small patch sizes within the natural landscape. These factors are the major contributor to misclassification and low map accuracies among remote sensing studies in savannas. Specific challenges to map the Cerrado's land cover types are related to the spectral similarity between classes of land use and natural vegetation, such as natural grassland vs. cultivated pasture, and forest ecosystem vs. crops. This study seeks to classify and evaluate the land cover patterns across an area ranked as having extremely high priority for future conservation in the Cerrado. The main objective of this study is to identify the representativeness of each vegetation type across the landscape using high to moderate spatial resolution imagery using an automated scheme. A combination of pixel-based and object-based approaches were tested using RapidEye 3A imagery (5m spatial resolution) to classify the Cerrado's major land cover types. The random forest classifier was used to map the major ecosystems present across the area, and demonstrated to have an effective result with 68% of overall accuracy. Post

  3. Long-term energy balance and vegetation water stress monitoring of Mediterranean oak savanna using satellite thermal data

    Science.gov (United States)

    González-Dugo, Maria P.; Chen, Xuelong; Andreu, Ana; Carpintero, Elisabet; Gómez-Giraldez, Pedro; Su, Z.(Bob)

    2017-04-01

    Drought is one of the major hazards faced by natural and cropped vegetation in the Mediterranean Sea Basin. Water scarcity is likely to be worsened under the predicted conditions of climate change, which is expected to make this region both warmer and drier. A Holm oak savanna, known as dehesa in Spain and montado in Portugal, is an agro-silvo-pastoral system occupying more than 3 million hectares the Iberian Peninsula and Greece. It consists of widely-spaced oak trees (mostly Quercus ilex L.), combined with crops, pasture and Mediterranean shrubs. This ecosystem is considered an example of sustainable land use, supporting a large number of species and diversity of habitats and for its importance in rural economy. A similar ecosystem is worldwide distributed in areas with Mediterranean climate (as California or South Africa) and shares structural and functional properties with tropical savannas in Africa, Australia and South America. Remote sensing time series can assist the monitoring of the energy balance components, with special attention to the evapotranspiration and vegetation water stress over these areas. Long-term data analysis may improve our understanding of the functioning of the system, helping to assess drought impacts and leading to reduce the economic and environmental vulnerability of this ecosystem. This work analyzes the evolution the surface energy balance components, mapping the evapotranspiration and moisture stress of holm oak woodlands of Spain and Portugal during the last 15 years (2001-2015). The surface energy balance model (SEBS) has been applied over the Iberian Peninsula on a monthly time scale and 0.05° spatial resolution, using multi-satellite and meteorological forcing data. Modelled energy and water fluxes have been validated using ground measurements of two eddy covariance towers located in oak savanna sites during 3 years, resulting in moderate deviations from observations (10-25 W/m2). The departure of actual ET from the

  4. Coupling carbon allocation with leaf and root phenology predicts tree-grass partitioning along a savanna rainfall gradient

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haverd, V.; Smith, B.; Raupach, M.; Briggs, P.; Nieradzik, L.; Beringer, J.; Hutley, L.; Trudinger, C. M.; Cleverly, J.

    2016-02-01

    The relative complexity of the mechanisms underlying savanna ecosystem dynamics, in comparison to other biomes such as temperate and tropical forests, challenges the representation of such dynamics in ecosystem and Earth system models. A realistic representation of processes governing carbon allocation and phenology for the two defining elements of savanna vegetation (namely trees and grasses) may be a key to understanding variations in tree-grass partitioning in time and space across the savanna biome worldwide. Here we present a new approach for modelling coupled phenology and carbon allocation, applied to competing tree and grass plant functional types. The approach accounts for a temporal shift between assimilation and growth, mediated by a labile carbohydrate store. This is combined with a method to maximize long-term net primary production (NPP) by optimally partitioning plant growth between fine roots and (leaves + stem). The computational efficiency of the analytic method used here allows it to be uniquely and readily applied at regional scale, as required, for example, within the framework of a global biogeochemical model.We demonstrate the approach by encoding it in a new simple carbon-water cycle model that we call HAVANA (Hydrology and Vegetation-dynamics Algorithm for Northern Australia), coupled to the existing POP (Population Orders Physiology) model for tree demography and disturbance-mediated heterogeneity. HAVANA-POP is calibrated using monthly remotely sensed fraction of absorbed photosynthetically active radiation (fPAR) and eddy-covariance-based estimates of carbon and water fluxes at five tower sites along the North Australian Tropical Transect (NATT), which is characterized by large gradients in rainfall and wildfire disturbance. The calibrated model replicates observed gradients of fPAR, tree leaf area index, basal area, and foliage projective cover along the NATT. The model behaviour emerges from complex feedbacks between the plant

  5. Impact of communal land use and conservation on woody vegetation structure in the Lowveld savannas of South Africa

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Wessels, Konrad J

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available @yahoo.co 0378-1127/ doi Please cite this article in press as: Wessels, K.J., et al., Impact of communal land use and conservation on woody vegetation structure in the Lowveld savannas of South Africa. Forest Ecol. Manage. (2010), doi:10.1016/j.foreco.2010....09.012 d in revised form 24 August 2010 d 7 September 2010 y words: R l land use r National Park y vegetation structure l wood a Using airborne LiDAR from the Carnegie Airborne Observatory (CAO), we quantified and compared tree canopy cover...

  6. Ecosystem properties of semi-arid savanna grassland in West Africa and its relationship to environmental variability

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tagesson, Torbern; Fensholt, Rasmus; Guiro, Idrissa

    2015-01-01

    he Dahra field site in Senegal, West Africa, was established in 2002 to monitor ecosystem properties of semiarid savanna grassland and their responses to climatic and environmental change. This article describes the environment and the ecosystem properties of the site using a unique set of in situ......), biomass, vegetation water content, and land-atmosphere exchanges of carbon (NEE) and energy. The Dahra field site experiences a typical Sahelian climate and is covered by coexisting trees (~3% canopy cover) and grass species, characterizing large parts of the Sahel. This makes the site suitable...

  7. Monitoring drought impact on Mediterranean oak savanna vegetation using remote sensing

    Science.gov (United States)

    González-Dugo, Maria P.; Carpintero, Elisabet; Andreu, Ana

    2015-04-01

    A holm oak savanna, known as dehesa in Spain and montado in Portugal, is the largest agroforest ecosystem in Europe, covering about 3 million hectares in the Iberian Peninsula and Greece (Papanastasis et al., 2004). It is considered an example of sustainable land use, supporting a large number of species and diversity of habitats and for its importance in rural development and economy (Plieninger et al., 2001). It is a combination between an agricultural and a naturally vegetated ecosystem, consisting of widely-spaced oak trees (mostly Quercus Ilex and Quercus suber) combined with a sub-canopy composed by crops, annual grassland and/or shrubs. It has a Mediterranean climate with severe periodic droughts. In the last decades, this system is being exposed to multiple threats derived from socio-economic changes and intensive agricultural use, which have caused environmental degradation, including tree decline, changes in soil properties and hydrological processes, and an increase of soil erosion (Coelho et al., 2004). Soil water dynamics plays a central role in the current decline and reduction of forested areas that jeopardizes the preservation of the system. In this work, a series of remotely sensed images since 1990 to present was used to evaluate the effect of several drought events occurred in the study area (1995, 2009, 2010/2011) on the tree density and water status. Data from satellites Landsat and field measurements have been combined in a spectral mixture model to assess separately the evolution of tree, dry grass and bare soil ground coverage. Only summer images have been used to avoid the influence of the green herbaceous layer on the analysis. Thermal data from the same sensors and meteorological information are integrated in a two source surface energy balance model to compute the Evaporative Stress Index (ESI) and evaluate the vegetation water status. The results have provided insights about the severity of each event and the spatial distribution of

  8. Intra-seasonal risk of agriculturally-relevant weather extremes in West African Sudan Savanna

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boansi, David; Tambo, Justice A.; Müller, Marc

    2018-01-01

    Using household survey data and historical daily climate data for 29 communities across Upper East Ghana and Southwest Burkina Faso, we document climatic conditions deemed major threat to farming in the West African Sudan Savanna and assess risks posed by such conditions over the period 1997-2014. Based on farmers' perception, it is found that drought, low rainfall, intense precipitation, flooding, erratic rainfall pattern, extremely high temperatures, delayed rains, and early cessation of rains are the major threats farmers face. Using first-order Markov chain model and relevant indices for monitoring weather extremes, it is discovered that climatic risk is a general inherent attribute of the rainy season in the study area. Due to recent changes in onset of rains and length of the rainy season, some farmers have either resorted to early planting of drought-hardy crops, late planting of drought-sensitive crops, or spreading of planting across the first 3 months of the season to moderate harm. Each of these planting decisions however has some risk implications. The months of May, June, and October are found to be more susceptible to relatively longer duration of dry and hot spells, while July, August, and September are found to be more susceptible to intense precipitation and flooding. To moderate harm from anticipated weather extremes, farmers need to adjust their cropping calendar, adopt appropriate crop varieties, and implement soil and water management practices. For policy makers and other stakeholders, we recommend the supply of timely and accurate weather forecasts to guide farmers in their seasonal cropping decisions and investment in/installation of low cost irrigation facilities to enhance the practice of supplemental irrigation.

  9. Relationship Between Edaphic Factors and Vegetation in Savannas of the Brazilian Midwest Region

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    Michellia Pereira Soares

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available The Brazilian savanna is a mosaic of phytophysiognomies influenced by edaphic and topographic factors that range from the occurrence of fires to anthropic disturbance. The goal of this study was a comparative analysis between two cerrado areas in southeastern Goiás, relating the floristic composition and structure of the vegetation to soil properties to better understand the physiognomic characteristics of the region. Twenty-five 20 × 20 m plots were used. All plants with circumference at breast height of more than 15 cm were measured. Soil samples collected at a depth of 0-20 cm were subjected to physical and chemical analyses. Canonical correspondence analysis (CCA was used to detect possible correlations between the soil properties and species abundance and distribution. The density and total basal area were 1,647 ind/ha and 15.57 m2/ha, respectively, in Ouroana. At this site, 107 species were sampled. In Montes Claros de Goiás, the density and total basal area were 781 ind/ha and 17.62 m2/ha, and 120 species were sampled. The soil texture of Ouroana was sandy and significantly different from the medium to clayey texture of Montes Claros. The soils of both areas are dystrophic, however, more fertile in Montes Claros and aluminum-toxic in Ouroana. The species of vegetation were distributed according to soil fertility levels. The CCAs grouped species according to soil properties that defined location and abundance as well as the phytophysiognomies of the studied areas.

  10. Seasonality, diaspore traits and the structure of plant-frugivore networks in Neotropical savanna forest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Darosci, Adriano Antonio Brito; Bruna, Emilio M.; Motta-Junior, José Carlos; Ferreira, Cristiane da Silva; Blake, John Gilman; Munhoz, Cássia Beatriz Rodrigues

    2017-10-01

    Complex frugivory networks are common in heterogeneous environments, but how the structure of those networks varies due to seasonality and other environmental factors remains unclear. For example, seasonal variation in rainfall can influence fruit production and diaspore characteristics, which could alter the quantity and quality of resources available to different animals in the network and, hence, network structure. We investigated how a frugivory network varied seasonally in Brazilian savanna (Cerrado), where there are well-defined dry and wet seasons and fructification mainly during the rainy season for most tree species. We recorded fruit consumption by animals during the dry and wet seasons in two different gallery forests and used these data to test the hypotheses that connectance, links per species and nestedness would be higher in the dry season than rainy season due to low available food in the former that would be consumed by various species of frugivores. Concomitantly, we also measured seed width and lipid content from diaspores of the fruiting trees to determine if these characteristics influenced interaction properties between fruiting trees and frugivores. Among the measured network parameters, connectance, links per species and specialization varied between seasons in one site but not in the other, indicating that seasonal variation in networks is not necessarily consistent over time or space. The number of tree species with small diaspores with high lipid content differed between seasons, and those characteristics were key factors increasing the interaction parameter of fruiting trees. We suggest that network stability between seasons may be related to local frugivore diversity, resource availability, and fruit quality.

  11. Assessing the use of forest islands by parrot species in a neotropical savanna

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    Igor Berkunsky

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Understanding the effect of habitat fragmentation is a fundamental yet complicated aim of many ecological studies. Beni savanna is a naturally fragmented forest habitat, where forest islands exhibit variation in resources and threats. To understand how the availability of resources and threats affect the use of forest islands by parrots, we applied occupancy modeling to quantify use and detection probabilities for 12 parrot species on 60 forest islands. The presence of urucuri (Attalea phalerata and macaw (Acrocomia aculeata palms, the number of tree cavities on the islands, and the presence of selective logging,and fire were included as covariates associated with availability of resources and threats. The model-selection analysis indicated that both resources and threats variables explained the use of forest islands by parrots. For most species, the best models confirmed predictions. The number of cavities was positively associated with use of forest islands by 11 species. The area of the island and the presence of macaw palm showed a positive association with the probability of use by seven and five species, respectively, while selective logging and fire showed a negative association with five and six species, respectively. The Blue-throated Macaw (Ara glaucogularis, the critically endangered parrot species endemic to our study area, was the only species that showed a negative association with both threats. Monitoring continues to be essential to evaluate conservation and management actions of parrot populations. Understanding of how species are using this natural fragmented habitat will help determine which fragments should be preserved and which conservation actions are needed.

  12. Factors influencing local ecological knowledge of forage resources: Ethnobotanical evidence from West Africa's savannas.

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    Naah, John-Baptist S N; Guuroh, Reginald T

    2017-03-01

    Recording local ecological knowledge (LEK) is a useful approach to understanding interactions of the complex social-ecological systems. In spite of the recent growing interest in LEK studies on the effects of climate and land use changes, livestock mobility decisions and other aspects of agro-pastoral systems, LEK on forage plants has still been vastly under-documented in the West African savannas. Using a study area ranging from northern Ghana to central Burkina Faso, we thus aimed at exploring how aridity and socio-demographic factors drive the distributional patterns of forage-related LEK among its holders. With stratified random sampling, we elicited LEK among 450 informants in 15 villages (seven in Ghana and eight in Burkina Faso) via free list tasks coupled with ethnobotanical walks and direct field observations. We performed generalized linear mixed-effects models (aridity- and ethnicity-based models) and robust model selection procedures. Our findings revealed that LEK for woody and herbaceous forage plants was strongly influenced by the ethnicity-based model, while aridity-based model performed better for LEK on overall forage resources and crop-related forage plants. We also found that climatic aridity had negative effect on the forage-related LEK across gender and age groups, while agro- and floristic diversity had positive effect on the body of LEK. About 135 species belonging to 95 genera and 52 families were cited. Our findings shed more light on how ethnicity and environmental harshness can markedly shape the body of LEK in the face of global climate change. Better understanding of such a place-based knowledge system is relevant for sustainable forage plants utilization and livestock production. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Streptomyces odonnellii sp. nov., a proteolytic streptomycete isolated from soil under cerrado (savanna) vegetation cover.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pereira, Pedro Henrique Freitas; Macrae, Andrew; Reinert, Fernanda; de Souza, Rodrigo Fonseca; Coelho, Rosalie Reed Rodrigues; Pötter, Gabrielle; Klenk, Hans-Peter; Labeda, David P

    2017-12-01

    A novel streptomycete, strain 594 T , isolated from Brazilian soil collected under cerrado (savanna) vegetation cover is described. Strain 594 T produced thermophilic chitinolytic proteases in assays containing feather meal and corn steep liquor as sole sources of carbon and nitrogen. The strain produced white to grey aerial mycelium and spiral chains of spiny-surfaced spores on the aerial mycelium and did not produce diffusible pigments. The ll-isomer of diaminopimelic acid was present in the cell wall and menaquinones were predominantly MK-9(H6) (52 %) and MK-9(H8) (30 %) with 6 % MK-9(H4) and slightly less than 1 % MK-9(H2). Polar lipids present were phosphatidylethanolamine, diphosphatidylglycerol, phosphatidylglycerol, phosphatidylinositol and an unknown phospholipid. The major fatty acids were anteiso-C15 : 0, anteiso-C16 : 0, anteiso-C14 : 0 and anteiso-C17 : 0. The G+C content of the genomic DNA was 70.4 mol%. Phylogenetic analysis of the nearly complete 16S rRNA gene sequence indicated that it differed from described Streptomyces species. Multilocus sequence analysis (MLSA) using five housekeeping genes (atpD, gyrB, rpoB, recA and trpB) comparing Streptomyces type strains showed that the MLSA distance of strain 594 T to the most closely related species was greater than the 0.007 threshold. The in silico DNA-DNA relatedness between the genome sequence of strain 594 T and that of the phylogenetically nearest species was well below the species level recommendation. There was thus multiple evidence justifying the description of this strain as representing a novel species, for which the name Streptomyces odonnellii sp. nov. is proposed. The type strain is 594 T (=IMPPG 594 T =DSM 41949 T =NRRL B-24891 T ).

  14. Importance of Habitat Heterogeneity in Richness and Diversity of Moths (Lepidoptera) in Brazilian Savanna.

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    Braga, Laura; Diniz, Ivone Rezende

    2015-06-01

    Moths exhibit different levels of fidelity to habitat, and some taxa are considered as bioindicators for conservation because they respond to habitat quality, environmental change, and vegetation types. In this study, we verified the effect of two phytophysiognomies of the Cerrado, savanna and forest, on the diversity distribution of moths of Erebidae (Arctiinae), Saturniidae, and Sphingidae families by using a hierarchical additive partitioning analysis. This analysis was based on two metrics: species richness and Shannon diversity index. The following questions were addressed: 1) Does the beta diversity of moths between phytophysiognomies add more species to the regional diversity than the beta diversity between sampling units and between sites? 2) Does the distribution of moth diversity differ among taxa? Alpha and beta diversities were compared with null models. The additive partitioning of species richness for the set of three Lepidoptera families identified beta diversity between phytophysiognomies as the component that contributed most to regional diversity, whereas the Shannon index identified alpha diversity as the major contributor. According to both species richness and the Shannon index, beta diversity between phytophysiognomies was significantly higher than expected by chance. Therefore, phytophysiognomies are the most important component in determining the richness and composition of the community. Additive partitioning also indicated that individual families of moths respond differently to the effect of habitat heterogeneity. The integrity of the Cerrado mosaic of phytophysiognomies plays a crucial role in maintaining moth biodiversity in the region. © The Authors 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  15. Revisiting the two-layer hypothesis: coexistence of alternative functional rooting strategies in savannas.

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    Holdo, Ricardo M

    2013-01-01

    The two-layer hypothesis of tree-grass coexistence posits that trees and grasses differ in rooting depth, with grasses exploiting soil moisture in shallow layers while trees have exclusive access to deep water. The lack of clear differences in maximum rooting depth between these two functional groups, however, has caused this model to fall out of favor. The alternative model, the demographic bottleneck hypothesis, suggests that trees and grasses occupy overlapping rooting niches, and that stochastic events such as fires and droughts result in episodic tree mortality at various life stages, thus preventing trees from otherwise displacing grasses, at least in mesic savannas. Two potential problems with this view are: 1) we lack data on functional rooting profiles in trees and grasses, and these profiles are not necessarily reflected by differences in maximum or physical rooting depth, and 2) subtle, difficult-to-detect differences in rooting profiles between the two functional groups may be sufficient to result in coexistence in many situations. To tackle this question, I coupled a plant uptake model with a soil moisture dynamics model to explore the environmental conditions under which functional rooting profiles with equal rooting depth but different depth distributions (i.e., shapes) can coexist when competing for water. I show that, as long as rainfall inputs are stochastic, coexistence based on rooting differences is viable under a wide range of conditions, even when these differences are subtle. The results also indicate that coexistence mechanisms based on rooting niche differentiation are more viable under some climatic and edaphic conditions than others. This suggests that the two-layer model is both viable and stochastic in nature, and that a full understanding of tree-grass coexistence and dynamics may require incorporating fine-scale rooting differences between these functional groups and realistic stochastic climate drivers into future models.

  16. Indigenous burning as conservation practice: neotropical savanna recovery amid agribusiness deforestation in Central Brazil.

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    Welch, James R; Brondízio, Eduardo S; Hetrick, Scott S; Coimbra, Carlos E A

    2013-01-01

    International efforts to address climate change by reducing tropical deforestation increasingly rely on indigenous reserves as conservation units and indigenous peoples as strategic partners. Considered win-win situations where global conservation measures also contribute to cultural preservation, such alliances also frame indigenous peoples in diverse ecological settings with the responsibility to offset global carbon budgets through fire suppression based on the presumed positive value of non-alteration of tropical landscapes. Anthropogenic fire associated with indigenous ceremonial and collective hunting practices in the Neotropical savannas (cerrado) of Central Brazil is routinely represented in public and scientific conservation discourse as a cause of deforestation and increased CO2 emissions despite a lack of supporting evidence. We evaluate this claim for the Xavante people of Pimentel Barbosa Indigenous Reserve, Brazil. Building upon 23 years of longitudinal interdisciplinary research in the area, we used multi-temporal spatial analyses to compare land cover change under indigenous and agribusiness management over the last four decades (1973-2010) and quantify the contemporary Xavante burning regime contributing to observed patterns based on a four year sample at the end of this sequence (2007-2010). The overall proportion of deforested land remained stable inside the reserve (0.6%) but increased sharply outside (1.5% to 26.0%). Vegetation recovery occurred where reserve boundary adjustments transferred lands previously deforested by agribusiness to indigenous management. Periodic traditional burning by the Xavante had a large spatial distribution but repeated burning in consecutive years was restricted. Our results suggest a need to reassess overreaching conservation narratives about the purported destructiveness of indigenous anthropogenic fire in the cerrado. The real challenge to conservation in the fire-adapted cerrado biome is the long

  17. Metapopulation dynamics of the mistletoe and its host in savanna areas with different fire occurrence.

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    Grazielle Sales Teodoro

    Full Text Available Mistletoes are aerial hemiparasitic plants which occupy patches of favorable habitat (host trees surrounded by unfavorable habitat and may be possibly modeled as a metapopulation. A metapopulation is defined as a subdivided population that persists due to the balance between colonization and extinction in discrete habitat patches. Our aim was to evaluate the dynamics of the mistletoe Psittacanthus robustus and its host Vochysia thyrsoidea in three Brazilian savanna areas using a metapopulation approach. We also evaluated how the differences in terms of fire occurrence affected the dynamic of those populations (two areas burned during the study and one was fire protected. We monitored the populations at six-month intervals. P. robustus population structure and dynamics met the expected criteria for a metapopulation: i the suitable habitats for the mistletoe occur in discrete patches; (ii local populations went extinct during the study and (iii colonization of previously non-occupied patches occurred. The ratio of occupied patches decreased in all areas with time. Local mistletoe populations went extinct due to two different causes: patch extinction in area with no fire and fire killing in the burned areas. In a burned area, the largest decrease of occupied patch ratios occurred due to a fire event that killed the parasites without, however, killing the host trees. The greatest mortality of V. thyrsoidea occurred in the area without fire. In this area, all the dead trees supported mistletoe individuals and no mortality was observed for parasite-free trees. Because P. robustus is a fire sensitive species and V. thyrsoidea is fire tolerant, P. robustus seems to increase host mortality, but its effect is lessened by periodic burning that reduces the parasite loads.

  18. New Native Rhizobia Strains for Inoculation of Common Bean in the Brazilian Savanna

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    Fábio Martins Mercante

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Maximization of biological nitrogen fixation in the common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L. crop depends on the genetic characteristics related to the plant, the symbiotic efficiency of rhizobia, and environmental factors. The objective of this study was to evaluate the performance of rhizobia selected beforehand from Cerrado (Brazilian tropical savanna soils in Mato Grosso do Sul. The experiments were conducted in 2007 in the municipalities of Aquidauana, Anaurilândia, Campo Grande, and Dourados, all located in the state of Mato Grosso do Sul. All procedures established followed the current recommendations of the Brazilian Ministry of Agriculture (Ministério de Agricultura, Pecuária e Abastecimento – MAPA, in accordance with the “official protocol for assessing the feasibility and agronomic efficiency of strains, and inoculant technologies linked to the process of biological nitrogen fixation in legumes”. The program for selection of rhizobia for inoculation in bean plants resulted in identification of different strains with high symbiotic efficiency, competitiveness, and genetic stability, based on the Embrapa Agropecuária Oeste collection of multifunctional microorganism cultures. In previous studies, 630 isolates of Rhizobium were evaluated. They were obtained from nodules of leucaena (380 or dry beans (250 from 87 locations, including 34 municipalities in Mato Grosso do Sul. Three of them stood out from the others: CPAO 12.5 L2, CPAO 17.5 L2, and CPAO 56.4 L2. Inoculation of these strains in bean plants demonstrated economic viability and high potential for obtaining a more effective inoculant suitable for trading purposes.

  19. Elephant movement closely tracks precipitation-driven vegetation dynamics in a Kenyan forest-savanna landscape.

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    Bohrer, Gil; Beck, Pieter Sa; Ngene, Shadrack M; Skidmore, Andrew K; Douglas-Hamilton, Ian

    2014-01-01

    This study investigates the ranging behavior of elephants in relation to precipitation-driven dynamics of vegetation. Movement data were acquired for five bachelors and five female family herds during three years in the Marsabit protected area in Kenya and changes in vegetation were mapped using MODIS normalized difference vegetation index time series (NDVI). In the study area, elevations of 650 to 1100 m.a.s.l experience two growth periods per year, while above 1100 m.a.s.l. growth periods last a year or longer. We find that elephants respond quickly to changes in forage and water availability, making migrations in response to both large and small rainfall events. The elevational migration of individual elephants closely matched the patterns of greening and senescing of vegetation in their home range. Elephants occupied lower elevations when vegetation activity was high, whereas they retreated to the evergreen forest at higher elevations while vegetation senesced. Elephant home ranges decreased in size, and overlapped less with increasing elevation. A recent hypothesis that ungulate migrations in savannas result from countervailing seasonally driven rainfall and fertility gradients is demonstrated, and extended to shorter-distance migrations. In other words, the trade-off between the poor forage quality and accessibility in the forest with its year-round water sources on the one hand and the higher quality forage in the low-elevation scrubland with its seasonal availability of water on the other hand, drives the relatively short migrations (the two main corridors are 20 and 90 km) of the elephants. In addition, increased intra-specific competition appears to influence the animals' habitat use during the dry season indicating that the human encroachment on the forest is affecting the elephant population.

  20. Pollination syndromes ignored: importance of non-ornithophilous flowers to Neotropical savanna hummingbirds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maruyama, Pietro K.; Oliveira, Genilda M.; Ferreira, Carolina; Dalsgaard, Bo; Oliveira, Paulo E.

    2013-11-01

    Generalization prevails in flower-animal interactions, and although animal visitors are not equally effective pollinators, most interactions likely represent an important energy intake for the animal visitor. Hummingbirds are nectar-feeding specialists, and many tropical plants are specialized toward hummingbird-pollination. In spite of this, especially in dry and seasonal tropical habitats, hummingbirds may often rely on non-ornithophilous plants to meet their energy requirements. However, quantitative studies evaluating the relative importance of ornithophilous vs. non-ornithophilous plants for hummingbirds in these areas are scarce. We here studied the availability and use of floral resources by hummingbirds in two different areas of the Cerrado, the seasonal savannas in Central Brazil. Roughly half the hummingbird visited plant species were non-ornithophilous, and these contributed greatly to increase the overall nectar availability. We showed that mean nectar offer, at the transect scale, was the only parameter related to hummingbird visitation frequency, more so than nectar offer at single flowers and at the plant scale, or pollination syndrome. Centrality indices, calculated using hummingbird-plant networks, showed that ornithophilous and non-ornithophilous plants have similar importance for network cohesion. How this foraging behaviour affects reproduction of non-ornithophilous plants remains largely unexplored and is probably case specific, however, we suggest that the additional energy provided by non-ornithophilous plants may facilitate reproduction of truly ornithophilous flowers by attracting and maintaining hummingbirds in the area. This may promote asymmetric hummingbird-plant associations, i.e., pollination depends on floral traits adapted to hummingbird morphology, but hummingbird visitation is determined more by the energetic "reward" than by pollination syndromes.

  1. Vegetation Structure and Carbon Stocks of Two Protected Areas within the South-Sudanian Savannas of Burkina Faso

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    Mohammad Qasim

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Savannas and adjacent vegetation types like gallery forests are highly valuable ecosystems contributing to several ecosystem services including carbon budgeting. Financial mechanisms such as REDD+ (Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation can provide an opportunity for developing countries to alleviate poverty through conservation of its forestry resources. However, for availing such opportunities carbon stock assessments are essential. Therefore, a research study for this purpose was conducted at two protected areas (Nazinga Game Ranch and Bontioli Nature Reserve in Burkina Faso. Similarly, analysis of various vegetation parameters was also conducted to understand the overall vegetation structure of these two protected areas. For estimating above ground biomass, existing allometric equations for dry tropical woody vegetation types were used. Compositional structure was described by applying tree species and family importance indices. The results show that both sites collectively contain a mean carbon stock of 3.41 ± 4.98 Mg·C·ha−1. Among different savanna vegetation types, gallery forests recorded the highest mean carbon stock of 9.38 ± 6.90 Mg·C·ha−1. This study was an attempt at addressing the knowledge gap particularly on carbon stocks of protected savannas—it can serve as a baseline for carbon stocks for future initiatives such as REDD+ within these areas.

  2. Convergent phylogenetic and functional responses to altered fire regimes in mesic savanna grasslands of North America and South Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forrestel, Elisabeth J; Donoghue, Michael J; Smith, Melinda D

    2014-08-01

    The importance of fire in the creation and maintenance of mesic grassland communities is well recognized. Improved understanding of how grasses--the dominant clade in these important ecosystems--will respond to alterations in fire regimes is needed in the face of anthropogenically driven climate and land-use change. Here, we examined how grass communities shift in response to experimentally manipulated fire regimes at multiple levels of community diversity--taxonomic, phylogenetic and functional--in C4-dominanted mesic savanna grassland sites with similar structure and physiognomy, yet disparate biogeographic histories. We found that the grass communities were similar in their phylogenetic response and aspects of their functional response to high fire frequency. Both sites exhibited phylogenetic clustering of highly abundant species in annually burned plots, driven by species of the Andropogoneae, and a narrow range of functional strategies associated with rapid post-fire regeneration in a high-light, nitrogen-limited environment. By examining multiple facets of diversity in a comparative context, we identified convergent phylogenetic and functional responses to altered fire regimes in two mesic savanna grasslands. Our results highlight the importance of a common filtering process associated with fire that is consistent across grasslands of disparate biogeographic histories and taxonomic representation. © 2014 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2014 New Phytologist Trust.

  3. Termite mounds as hot spots of nitrous oxide emissions in South-Sudanian savanna of Burkina Faso (West Africa)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brümmer, Christian; Papen, Hans; Wassmann, Reiner; Brüggemann, Nicolas

    2009-05-01

    Despite a considerable knowledge of the significant role of termites in the global methane budget, very little is known about their contribution to the global nitrous oxide (N2O) budget. Release of N2O from termite (Cubitermes fungifaber) mounds was measured at a natural savanna site in the southwest of Burkina Faso from May to September 2006. Termite N2O emissions were around 20 μg N2O-N m-2 h-1 at the end of the dry season, and up to two orders of magnitude higher than N2O emissions from the surrounding termite-free soil after the onset of the rainy season. The average N2O emission rate from termite mounds during the observation period was 204 μg N2O-N m-2 h-1, and termite mounds contributed 3.0% to total N2O emissions from this savanna ecosystem. However, in other tropical terrestrial ecosystems with other termite species and/or higher termite density this share might be significantly higher.

  4. Changes in diversity, abundance, and structure of soil bacterial communities in Brazilian Savanna under different land use systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rampelotto, Pabulo Henrique; de Siqueira Ferreira, Adão; Barboza, Anthony Diego Muller; Roesch, Luiz Fernando Wurdig

    2013-10-01

    The Brazilian Savanna, also known as "Cerrado", is the richest and most diverse savanna in the world and has been ranked as one of the main hotspots of biodiversity. The Cerrado is a representative biome in Central Brazil and the second largest biome in species diversity of South America. Nevertheless, large areas of native vegetation have been converted to agricultural land including grain production, livestock, and forestry. In this view, understanding how land use affects microbial communities is fundamental for the sustainable management of agricultural ecosystems. The aim of this work was to analyze and compare the soil bacterial communities from the Brazilian Cerrado associated with different land use systems using high throughput pyrosequencing of 16S rRNA genes. Relevant differences were observed in the abundance and structure of bacterial communities in soils under different land use systems. On the other hand, the diversity of bacterial communities was not relevantly changed among the sites studied. Land use systems had also an important impact on specific bacterial groups in soil, which might change the soil function and the ecological processes. Acidobacteria, Proteobacteria, and Actinobacteria were the most abundant groups in the Brazilian Cerrado. These findings suggest that more important than analyzing the general diversity is to analyze the composition of the communities. Since soil type was the same among the sites, we might assume that land use was the main factor defining the abundance and structure of bacterial communities.

  5. Determinants of seasonal changes in availability of food patches for elephants (Loxodonta africana in a semi-arid African savanna

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    Bruce W. Clegg

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Loss of biodiversity caused by impact of elephants (Loxodonta africana on African woodlands may require a management response, but any action should be based on an understanding of why elephants choose to utilise trees destructively. Comprehension of elephant feeding behaviour requires consideration of the relative value of the plant groups they may potentially consume. Profitability of available food is partly determined by the time to locate a food patch and, therefore, as a foundation for understanding the influence of food availability on diet selection, key controls on the density of grass, forb, and browse patches were investigated across space and time in a semi-arid African savanna. Density of food patches changed seasonally because plant life-forms required different volumes of soil water to produce green forage; and woody plants and forbs responded to long-term changes in soil moisture, while grasses responded to short-term moisture pulses. Soil texture, structure of woody vegetation and fire added further complexity by altering the soil water thresholds required for production of green forage. Interpolating between regularly-timed, ground-based measurements of food density by using modelled soil water as the predictor in regression equations may be a feasible method of quantifying food available to elephants in complex savanna environments.

  6. Contributions of microbial activity and ash deposition to post-fire nitrogen availability in a pine savanna

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    Ficken, Cari D.; Wright, Justin P.

    2017-01-01

    Many ecosystems experience drastic changes to soil nutrient availability associated with fire, but the magnitude and duration of these changes are highly variable among vegetation and fire types. In pyrogenic pine savannas across the southeastern United States, pulses of soil inorganic nitrogen (N) occur in tandem with ecosystem-scale nutrient losses from prescribed burns. Despite the importance of this management tool for restoring and maintaining fire-dependent plant communities, the contributions of different mechanisms underlying fire-associated changes to soil N availability remain unclear. Pulses of N availability following fire have been hypothesized to occur through (1) changes to microbial cycling rates and (2) direct ash deposition. Here, we document fire-associated changes to N availability across the growing season in a longleaf pine savanna in North Carolina. To differentiate between possible mechanisms driving soil N pulses, we measured net microbial cycling rates and changes to soil δ15N before and after a burn. Our findings refute both proposed mechanisms: we found no evidence for changes in microbial activity, and limited evidence that ash deposition could account for the increase in ammonium availability to more than 5-25 times background levels. Consequently, we propose a third mechanism to explain post-fire patterns of soil N availability, namely that (3) changes to plant sink strength may contribute to ephemeral increases in soil N availability, and encourage future studies to explicitly test this mechanism.

  7. Convective and nonconvective rainfall partitioning over a mixed Sudanian Savanna Agriculture Catchment: Use of a distributed sensor network

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ceperley, N. C.; Mande, T.; Barrenetxea, G.; Repetti, A.; Yacouba, H.; Tyler, S. W.; Parlange, M. B.

    2011-12-01

    A hydro-meteorological field campaign (joint EPFL-2iE) in a mixed agricultural and forest region in the southern Burkina Faso Savanna aims to identify and understand convective rainfall processes and the link to soil moisture. A simple slab Mixed Layer and Lifting Condensation Level model is implemented to separate convective and nonconvective rainfall. Data for this research were acquired during the 2010 rainy season using an array of wireless weather stations (SensorScope) as well as surface energy balance stations that based upon eddy correlation heat flux measurements. The precipitation was found to be variable over the basin with some 200 mm of difference in total seasonal rainfall between agricultural fields and savanna forest. Convective rainfall represents more than 30% of the total rainfall. The convective rainfall events are short (less than hour), intense (greater than 3 mm/minute) and occur both in the early morning and in the afternoons. These events can have an important impact on soil erosion, which we discuss in more detail along with seasonal stream-aquifer interactions.

  8. On the relative role of fire and rainfall in determining vegetation patterns in tropical savannas: a simulation study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spessa, Allan; Fisher, Rosie

    2010-05-01

    Tropical savannas cover 18% of the world's land surface and are amongst the most productive terrestrial systems in the world. They comprise 15% of the total terrestrial carbon stock, with an estimated mean net primary productivity (NPP) of 7.2 tCha-1yr-1 or two thirds of NPP in tropical forests. Tropical savannas are the most frequently burnt biome, with fire return intervals in highly productive areas being typically 1-2 years. Fires shape vegetation species composition, tree to grass ratios and nutrient redistribution, as well as the biosphere-atmosphere exchange of trace gases, momentum and radiative energy. Tropical savannas are a major source of emissions, contributing 38 % of total annual CO2 from biomass burning, 30% CO, 19 % CH4 and 59 % NOx. Climatically, they occur in regions subject to a strongly seasonal ‘wet-dry' regime, usually under monsoonal control from the movement of the inter-tropical convergence zone. In general, rainfall during the prior wet season(s) determines the amount of grass fuel available for burning while the length of the dry season influences fuel moisture content. Rainfall in tropical savannas exhibits high inter-annual variability, and under future climate change, is projected to change significantly in much of Africa, South America and northern Australia. Process-based simulation models of fire-vegetation dynamics and feedbacks are critical for determining the impacts of wildfires under projected future climate change on i) ecosystem structure and function, and ii) emissions of trace gases and aerosols from biomass burning. A new mechanistic global fire model SPITFIRE (SPread and InTensity of FIRE) has been designed to overcome many of the limitations in existing fire models set within Dynamic Global Vegetation Models (DGVMs). SPITFIRE has been applied in coupled mode globally and southern Africa, both as part of the LPJ DGVM. It has also been driven with MODIS burnt area data applied to sub-Saharan Africa, while coupled to the

  9. Maize-grain legume intercropping for enhanced resource use efficiency and crop productivity in the Guinea savanna of northern Ghana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kermah, Michael; Franke, Angelinus C; Adjei-Nsiah, Samuel; Ahiabor, Benjamin D K; Abaidoo, Robert C; Giller, Ken E

    2017-11-01

    Smallholder farmers in the Guinea savanna practise cereal-legume intercropping to mitigate risks of crop failure in mono-cropping. The productivity of cereal-legume intercrops could be influenced by the spatial arrangement of the intercrops and the soil fertility status. Knowledge on the effect of soil fertility status on intercrop productivity is generally lacking in the Guinea savanna despite the wide variability in soil fertility status in farmers' fields, and the productivity of within-row spatial arrangement of intercrops relative to the distinct-row systems under on-farm conditions has not been studied in the region. We studied effects of maize-legume spatial intercropping patterns and soil fertility status on resource use efficiency, crop productivity and economic profitability under on-farm conditions in the Guinea savanna. Treatments consisted of maize-legume intercropped within-row, 1 row of maize alternated with one row of legume, 2 rows of maize alternated with 2 rows of legume, a sole maize crop and a sole legume crop. These were assessed in the southern Guinea savanna (SGS) and the northern Guinea savanna (NGS) of northern Ghana for two seasons using three fields differing in soil fertility in each agro-ecological zone. Each treatment received 25 kg P and 30 kg K ha -1 at sowing, while maize received 25 kg (intercrop) or 50 kg (sole) N ha -1 at 3 and 6 weeks after sowing. The experiment was conducted in a randomised complete block design with each block of treatments replicated four times per fertility level at each site. Better soil conditions and rainfall in the SGS resulted in 48, 38 and 9% more maize, soybean and groundnut grain yield, respectively produced than in the NGS, while 11% more cowpea grain yield was produced in the NGS. Sole crops of maize and legumes produced significantly more grain yield per unit area than the respective intercrops of maize and legumes. Land equivalent ratios (LERs) of all intercrop patterns were greater than

  10. Classification of savanna tree species, in the Greater Kruger National Park region, by integrating hyperspectral and LiDAR data in a random forest data mining environment

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Naidoo, L

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available . Savanna vegetation are also highly irregular in canopy and crown shape, height and other structural dimensions with a combination of open grassland patches and dense woody thicket – a stark contrast to the more homogeneous forest vegetation. This study...

  11. SOIL FLUXES OF CO2, CO, NO AND N2O FROM AN OLD-PASTURE AND FROM NATIVE SAVANNA IN BRAZIL

    Science.gov (United States)

    We compared fluxes of CO2, CO, NO and N2O, soil microbial biomass, and N-mineralization rates in a 20-year old Brachiaria pasture and a native cerrado area (savanna in Central Brazil). In order to assess the spatial variability of CO2 fluxes, we tested the relation between elect...

  12. SOIL EMISSIONS OF N2O, NO AND CO2 IN BRAZILIAN SAVANNAS: EFFECTS OF VEGETATION TYPE, SEASONALITY, AND PRESCRIBED FIRES

    Science.gov (United States)

    Using closed chamber techniques, soil fluxes of NO, N20 and C02 were measured from September 1999 through October 2000 in savanna areas in central Brazil (Cerrado) subjected to prescribed fires. Our studies focused on two vegetation types, cerrado stricto sensu (20-50% canopy cov...

  13. The role of cattle manure in enhancing on-farm productivity, macro- and micro-nutrient uptake, and profitability of maize in the Guinea savanna

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Franke, A.C.; Diels, J.; Schulz, S.; Oyewole, B.D.; Tobe, O.

    2008-01-01

    An on-farm trial was conducted in the northern Guinea savanna of Nigeria, over a period of five years, with the objectives of quantifying the effects on maize of applying cattle manure in combination with synthetic fertilizer with regard to soil characteristics, yield, plant nutrition and

  14. The distribution, abundance, and the effects of fire on mound building termites (Trinervitermes and Cubitermes spp., Isoptera: Termitidae) in northern guinea savanna West Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benzie, John A H

    1986-11-01

    Termite mound densities in typical guinea savanna, Detarium, and grassland (boval) habitats in northern guinea savanna were determined by random quadratting of 2-3 sites in each habitat (100, 10x10 m quadrats per habitat). Dominant species in guinea savanna were T. geminatus (46 mounds ha -1 ) and T. oeconomus (21 mounds ha -1 ), in Detarium T. geminatus (59 mounds ha -1 ) and C. curtatus (45 mounds ha -1 ) and in boval C. curtatus (72 mounds ha -1 ) and T. geminatus (22 mounds ha -1 ). Only C. curtatus densities and total densities differed significantly between sites within habitats, but all species differed significantly in abundance between habitats. The composition of each community was related to general environment but no particular environmental variable was shown to be a major determinant of termite distribution. Evidence for the limitation of termite populations was obtained from indirect evidence of competition between colonies in Detarium, and by experimental manipulation of fire regimes in the typical guinea savanna habitat. Harvester termites increased four-five fold over two years in fire-protected plots as a result of increased food supplies. Total termite densities in the fire-protected community equilibrated to the new population density (100 mounds ha -1 ) after only two-three years.

  15. Using paleoecological data to define main vegetation dynamics along the savanna-forest ecotone in Colombia: implications for accurate assessment of human impacts

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Berrio, J.C.; Wouters, H.; Hooghiemstra, H.; Carr, A.S.; Boom, A.; Randall, R.W

    2012-01-01

    n recent decades there has been increasing interest, from scientists of many disciplines, in the origins and dynamics of tropical savanna-forest boundaries. These boundaries are rarely present as a smooth gradient from tropical forests to scattered trees and open grassland (Bond and Parr 2010);

  16. Influence of grazing on soil seed banks determines the restoration potential of aboveground vegetation in a semi-arid savanna in Ethiopia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tessema, Z.K.; Boer, de W.F.; Baars, R.M.T.; Prins, H.H.T.

    2012-01-01

    Species composition, number of emerging seedlings, species diversity and functional group of the soil seed banks, and the influence of grazing on the similarity between the soil seed banks and aboveground vegetation, were studied in 2008 and 2009 in a semi-arid savanna of Ethiopia. We tested whether

  17. Comparison of ground beetle (Coleoptera: Carabidae) assemblages in Rocky Mountain savannas invaded and un-invaded by an exotic forb, spotted knapweed

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allison K. Hansen; Yvette K. Ortega; Diana L. Six

    2009-01-01

    We compared ground beetle (Carabidae) assemblages between spotted knapweed (Centaurea maculosa Lam.) -invaded (invaded) and un-invaded (native) habitats in Rocky Mountain savannas. Carabids play important roles in biotic communities and are known as a good indictor group of environmental change. Carabid species activity-abundance and diversity were estimated, and...

  18. Spectral mapping of savanna tree species at canopy level, with focus on tall trees, using an integrated CAO Hyperspectral & LiDAR sensor approach

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Naidoo, L

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available The detection and mapping of tree/plant species in the savanna ecosystem can provide numerous benefits for the managerial authorities. This includes the accurate mapping of the spatial distribution of economically viable trees which are a key source...

  19. Raptors in changing West African savannas : the impact of anthropogenic land transformation on populations of Palearctic and Afrotropical raptors in northern Cameroon

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Buij, Ralph

    2013-01-01

    Raptors in West Africa’s savannas have strongly declined the past four decades and many species now survive only in a few pockets of intact habitat, mostly inside protected areas, while some species are on the brink of extinction. Little is known about the processes that sustain raptor populations

  20. Competition between a Lawn-Forming Cynodon dactylon and a Tufted Grass Species Hyparrhenia hirta on a South-African Dystrophic Savanna

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zwerts, J.A.; Prins, H.H.T.; Bomhoff, D.; Verhagen, I.; Swart, J.M.; Boer, de W.F.

    2015-01-01

    South African savanna grasslands are often characterised by indigestible tufted grass species whereas lawn grasses are far more desirable in terms of herbivore sustenance. We aimed to investigate the role of nutrients and/or the disturbance (grazing, trampling) by herbivores on the formation of

  1. Phytoliths as indicators of plant community change: A case study of the reconstruction of the historical extent of the oak savanna in the Willamette Valley Oregon, USA

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kirchholtes, R.P.J.; van Mourik, J.M.; Johnson, B.R.

    2015-01-01

    The Oregon white oak savanna, once common in Oregon's Willamette Valley, has been reduced to less than 1% of its former extent. For ecological restoration purposes, we used phytolith analysis to establish both historical vegetation composition and structure at the Jim's Creek research site in

  2. Oak savanna restoration in central Iowa: Assessing indicators of forest health for ecological monitoring (PROJECT NC-F-04-02)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heidi Asbjornsen; Lars Brudvig

    2013-01-01

    Savanna ecosystems were once a dominant feature of the Midwestern Corn Belt Plains ecoregion, occurring within the dynamic boundary between prairies to the west and forests to the east, and maintained in the landscape by complex interactions between fire, climate, topography, and human activities (Anderson 1998). Characterized by their continuous understory layer and...

  3. Late Glacial Tropical Savannas in Sundaland Inferred From Stable Carbon Isotope Records of Cave Guano

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wurster, C. M.; Bird, M. I.; Bull, I.; Dungait, J.; Bryant, C. L.; Ertunç, T.; Hunt, C.; Lewis, H. A.; Paz, V.

    2008-12-01

    During the Last Glacial Period (LGP), reduced global sea level exposed the continental shelf south of Thailand to Sumatra, Java, and Borneo to form the contiguous continent of Sundaland. However, the type and extent of vegetation that existed on much of this exposed landmass during the LGP remains speculative. Extensive bird and bat guano deposits in caves throughout this region span beyond 40,000 yr BP, and contain a wealth of untapped stratigraphic palaeoenvironmental information. Stable carbon isotope ratios of insectivorous bird and bat guano contain a reliable record of the animal's diet and, through non-specific insect predation, reflect the relative abundance of major physiological pathways in plants. Various physiological pathways of carbon fixation in plants yield differing stable carbon isotope ratios. Stable carbon isotope values of C3 plants are lower than C4 vegetation due to different enzymatic discriminations of the heavy isotope through the carbon fixing pathways. In tropical locales, grasses nearly always follow the C4 photosynthetic pathway, whereas tropical rainforest uses C3 photosynthesis, providing a proxy for vegetation and therefore climate change in the past. Here we discuss four guano stable-isotope records, based on insect cuticle and n-alkane analysis, supplemented by pollen analysis. All sites suggest a C3 dominated ecosystem for the Holocene, consistent with the wet tropical forest vegetation present at all locations. Two sites from Palawan Island, Philippines, record stable carbon isotope values of guano that document a drastic change from C3 (forest) to C4 (savanna) dominated ecosystems during the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM). A third location, at Niah Great Cave, Malaysia, indicates C3-dominant vegetation throughout the record, but does display variation in stable carbon isotope values likely linked to humidity changes. A fourth location, Batu Caves in Peninsular Malaysia, also indicates open vegetation during the LGM. Vegetation

  4. Landscape Evolution in South Texas Savannas: Impact of Woody Encroachment on Land-Surface Hydrology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Basant, S.; Wilcox, B. P.

    2017-12-01

    South Texas shrubland savannas have seen extensive woody encroachment over the last century. The ecosystem is largely spread over the coastal sediments typified by subtle elevation differences which are marked by bands of thick vegetation. Together, they form a dendritic pattern of vegetation which resembles a drainage network. We hypothesize that these vegetation shifts from grassland to woodlands began with the woody encroachment of drainage networks first. This was helped mainly by two factors, a) cattle grazing, b) the undulating feature of the landscape, c) periodic high intensity storms every few years resulting in large overland flows. We propose that the overland flows generated by these periodic storms provided a `subsidy' of extra water accounting for the differential rate of biomass production in lowlands. We also propose that with the continued woody encroachment, the extent of redistribution of water has changed in extent, and in scale triggering vegetation dynamics which are more controlled at patch scales. Soil moisture data was collected for over a year using neutron moisture meter for 40 points spread over a micro catchment. Plot scale runoff and interception data was sampled for the same catchment. USGS historical streamflow data from nearby creeks was used to confirm the periodic trend of runoff generation. Control exerted by microtopography of the site was accounted by using DEM at 1m resolution. Soil water storage was found to be consistently higher for uplands with open areas while lower for wooded patches but the upland sites also exhibited variability based on the slope and soil texture. Runoff generated also varied on shrub cover, slope and soil order, but higher for areas with previous records of grazing. Most runoff events were < 2mm except for 2 hurricane events in our records which generated more than 100mm of runoff. This points to the importance the role of rainfall intensity and the scale of runoff redistribution in providing

  5. Effects of groundwater abstraction on two keystone tree species in an arid savanna national park.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shadwell, Eleanor; February, Edmund

    2017-01-01

    In arid systems with no surface water, deep boreholes in ephemeral river beds provide for humans and animals. With continually increasing infrastructure development for tourism in arid wildlife parks such as the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park in southern Africa, we ask what effects increased abstraction may have on large trees. Large trees in arid savannas perform essential ecosystem services by providing food, shade, nesting sites and increased nutrients for many other plant and animal species and for this are regarded as keystone species. We determine seasonal fluctuations in the water table while also determining the water source for the dominant large tree species in the Auob and Nossob rivers in the Park. We also determine the extent to which these trees are physiologically stressed using leaf δ 13 C, xylem pressure potentials, specific leaf area and an estimate of canopy death. We do this both upstream and downstream of a low water use borehole in the Auob River and a high water use borehole in the Nossob River. Our results show that the trees are indeed using deep groundwater in the wet season and that this is the same water used by people. In the dry season, trees in the Auob downstream of the active borehole become detached from the aquifer and use more isotopically enriched soil water. In the Nossob in the dry season, all trees use isotopically enriched soil water, and downstream of the active borehole use stomatal regulation to maintain leaf water potentials. These results suggest that trees in the more heavily utilised Nossob are under more water stress than those trees in the Auob but that trees in both rivers demonstrate physiological adaptation to the changes in available water with smaller heavier leaves, no significant canopy dieback and in the dry season in the Nossob stomatal regulation of leaf water potentials. An increase in abstraction of groundwater particularly at the Nossob borehole may cause an additional draw down of the water table adding

  6. Effects of groundwater abstraction on two keystone tree species in an arid savanna national park

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eleanor Shadwell

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Background In arid systems with no surface water, deep boreholes in ephemeral river beds provide for humans and animals. With continually increasing infrastructure development for tourism in arid wildlife parks such as the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park in southern Africa, we ask what effects increased abstraction may have on large trees. Large trees in arid savannas perform essential ecosystem services by providing food, shade, nesting sites and increased nutrients for many other plant and animal species and for this are regarded as keystone species. Methods We determine seasonal fluctuations in the water table while also determining the water source for the dominant large tree species in the Auob and Nossob rivers in the Park. We also determine the extent to which these trees are physiologically stressed using leaf δ13C, xylem pressure potentials, specific leaf area and an estimate of canopy death. We do this both upstream and downstream of a low water use borehole in the Auob River and a high water use borehole in the Nossob River. Results Our results show that the trees are indeed using deep groundwater in the wet season and that this is the same water used by people. In the dry season, trees in the Auob downstream of the active borehole become detached from the aquifer and use more isotopically enriched soil water. In the Nossob in the dry season, all trees use isotopically enriched soil water, and downstream of the active borehole use stomatal regulation to maintain leaf water potentials. These results suggest that trees in the more heavily utilised Nossob are under more water stress than those trees in the Auob but that trees in both rivers demonstrate physiological adaptation to the changes in available water with smaller heavier leaves, no significant canopy dieback and in the dry season in the Nossob stomatal regulation of leaf water potentials. Discussion An increase in abstraction of groundwater particularly at the Nossob borehole may

  7. Epidemiology of malaria in the forest-savanna transitional zone of Ghana

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Newton Sam

    2009-09-01

    was 269 infective bites per person per year. Conclusion The transmission of malaria in the forest-savanna region of central Ghana is high and perennial and this is an appropriate site for conducting clinical trials of anti-malarial drugs and vaccines.

  8. The influence of biogeographic history on the functional and phylogenetic diversity of passerine birds in savannas and forests of the Brazilian Amazon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almeida, Sara Miranda; Juen, Leandro; Sobral, Fernando Landa; Santos, Marcos Pérsio Dantas

    2018-04-01

    Passeriformes is the largest and most diverse avian order in the world and comprises the Passeri and Tyranni suborders. These suborders constitute a monophyletic group, but differ in their ecology and history of occupation of South America. We investigated the influence of biogeographic history on functional and phylogenetic diversities of Passeri and Tyranni in forest and savanna habitats in the Brazilian Amazon. We compiled species composition data for 34 Passeriformes assemblages, 12 in savannas and 22 in forests. We calculated the functional (Rao's quadratic entropy, FD Q ) and phylogenetic diversities (mean pairwise distance, MPD, and mean nearest taxon distance, MNTD), and the functional beta diversity to investigate the potential role of biogeographic history in shaping ecological traits and species lineages of both suborders. The functional diversity of Passeri was higher than for Tyranni in both habitats. The MPD for Tyranni was higher than for Passeri in forests; however, there was no difference between the suborders in savannas. In savannas, Passeri presented higher MNTD than Tyranni, while in forest areas, Tyranni assemblages showed higher MNTD than Passeri. We found a high functional turnover (~75%) between Passeri and Tyranni in both habitats. The high functional diversity of Passeri in both habitats is due to the high diversity of ecological traits exhibited by species of this group, which enables the exploitation of a wide variety of resources and foraging strategies. The higher Tyranni MPD and MNTD in forests is likely due to Tyranni being older settlers in this habitat, resulting in the emergence and persistence of more lineages. The higher Passeri MNTD in savannas can be explained by the existence of a larger number of different Passeri lineages adapted to this severe habitat. The high functional turnover between the suborders in both habitats suggests an ecological strategy to avoid niche overlap.

  9. Ecological thresholds in the savanna landscape: developing a protocol for monitoring the change in composition and utilisation of large trees.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dave J Druce

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Acquiring greater understanding of the factors causing changes in vegetation structure -- particularly with the potential to cause regime shifts -- is important in adaptively managed conservation areas. Large trees (> or =5 m in height play an important ecosystem function, and are associated with a stable ecological state in the African savanna. There is concern that large tree densities are declining in a number of protected areas, including the Kruger National Park, South Africa. In this paper the results of a field study designed to monitor change in a savanna system are presented and discussed. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Developing the first phase of a monitoring protocol to measure the change in tree species composition, density and size distribution, whilst also identifying factors driving change. A central issue is the discrete spatial distribution of large trees in the landscape, making point sampling approaches relatively ineffective. Accordingly, fourteen 10 m wide transects were aligned perpendicular to large rivers (3.0-6.6 km in length and eight transects were located at fixed-point photographic locations (1.0-1.6 km in length. Using accumulation curves, we established that the majority of tree species were sampled within 3 km. Furthermore, the key ecological drivers (e.g. fire, herbivory, drought and disease which influence large tree use and impact were also recorded within 3 km. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The technique presented provides an effective method for monitoring changes in large tree abundance, size distribution and use by the main ecological drivers across the savanna landscape. However, the monitoring of rare tree species would require individual marking approaches due to their low densities and specific habitat requirements. Repeat sampling intervals would vary depending on the factor of concern and proposed management mitigation. Once a monitoring protocol has been identified and evaluated, the next

  10. Prospects of the ICESat-2 Laser Altimetry Mission for Savanna Ecosystem Structural Studies Based on Airborne Simulation Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gwenzi, David; Lefsky, Michael A.; Suchdeo, Vijay P.; Harding, David J.

    2016-01-01

    The next planned spaceborne lidar mission is the Ice, Cloud and land Elevation Satellite 2 (ICESat-2), which will use the Advanced Topographic Laser Altimeter System (ATLAS) sensor, a photon counting technique. To pre-validate the capability of this mission for studying three dimensional vegetation structure in savannas, we assessed the potential of the measurement approach to estimate canopy height in an oak savanna landscape. We used data from the Multiple Altimeter Beam Experimental Lidar (MABEL), an airborne photon counting lidar sensor developed by NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center. ATLAS-like data was generated using the MATLAS simulator, which adjusts MABEL data's detected number of signal and noise photons to that expected from the ATLAS instrument. Transects flown over the Tejon ranch conservancy in Kern County, California, USA were used for this work. For each transect we chose to use data from the near infrared channel that had the highest number of photons. We segmented each transect into 50 m, 25 m and 14 m long blocks and aggregated the photons in each block into a histogram based on their elevation values. We then used an automated algorithm to identify cut off points where the cumulative density of photons from the highest elevation indicates the presence of the canopy top and likewise where such cumulative density from the lowest elevation indicates the mean terrain elevation. MABEL derived height metrics were moderately correlated to discrete return lidar (DRL) derived height metrics r(sub 2) and RMSE values ranging from 0.60 to 0.73 and 2.9 m to 4.4 m respectively) but MATLAS simulation resulted in more modest correlations with DRL indices r(sub 2) ranging from 0.5 to 0.64 and RMSE from 3.6 m to 4.6 m). Simulations also indicated that the expected number of signal photons from ATLAS will be substantially lower, a situation that reduces canopy height estimation precision especially in areas of low density vegetation cover. On the basis of the

  11. Effect of canopy cover and canopy background variables on spectral profiles of savanna rangeland bush encroachment species based on selected Acacia species (mellifera, tortilis, karroo) and Dichrostachys cinerea at Mokopane, South Africa

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Munyati, C

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available The proliferation of woody plant species on savanna rangelands (i.e. bush encroachment) degrades rangeland quality, thereby threatening the biodiversity conservation effort as well as pastoral farming. Hyperspectral remote sensing offers...

  12. Longitudinal Distribution of the Functional Feeding Groups of Aquatic Insects in Streams of the Brazilian Cerrado Savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brasil, L S; Juen, L; Batista, J D; Pavan, M G; Cabette, H S R

    2014-10-01

    We demonstrate that the distribution of the functional feeding groups of aquatic insects is related to hierarchical patch dynamics. Patches are sites with unique environmental and functional characteristics that are discontinuously distributed in time and space within a lotic system. This distribution predicts that the occurrence of species will be based predominantly on their environmental requirements. We sampled three streams within the same drainage basin in the Brazilian Cerrado savanna, focusing on waterfalls and associated habitats (upstream, downstream), representing different functional zones. We collected 2,636 specimens representing six functional feeding groups (FFGs): brushers, collector-gatherers, collector-filterers, shredders, predators, and scrapers. The frequency of occurrence of these groups varied significantly among environments. This variation appeared to be related to the distinct characteristics of the different habitat patches, which led us to infer that the hierarchical patch dynamics model can best explain the distribution of functional feeding groups in minor lotic environments, such as waterfalls.

  13. Savanna ant species richness is maintained along a bioclimatic gradient of increasing latitude and decreasing rainfall in northern Australia

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Alan N.; Del Toro, Israel; Parr, Catherine L.

    2015-01-01

    of 246 species from 37 genera. Mean observed species richness pooled across sampling periods was similar at sand (85.4) and loam (82.2) sites, but was less than half this at clay sites (40.0). Ant communities were also compositionally distinct on clay soils compared with sands and loams. Individual...... genera showed variable diversity patterns, ranging from a linear increase to a linear decrease in species richness along the NATT. However, total species richness was relatively uniform along the gradient. Patterns of ant species turnover were consistent with previously recognized biogeographical......Aim: Using a standardized sampling protocol along a 600-km transect in northern Australia, we tested whether ant diversity within a single biome, tropical savanna, decreases with increasing latitude (as a surrogate of temperature) and decreasing rainfall, as is expected for biodiversity in general...

  14. Breakdown of an ant-plant mutualism follows the loss of large herbivores from an African savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palmer, Todd M; Stanton, Maureen L; Young, Truman P; Goheen, Jacob R; Pringle, Robert M; Karban, Richard

    2008-01-11

    Mutualisms are key components of biodiversity and ecosystem function, yet the forces maintaining them are poorly understood. We investigated the effects of removing large mammals on an ant-Acacia mutualism in an African savanna. Ten years of large-herbivore exclusion reduced the nectar and housing provided by plants to ants, increasing antagonistic behavior by a mutualistic ant associate and shifting competitive dominance within the plant-ant community from this nectar-dependent mutualist to an antagonistic species that does not depend on plant rewards. Trees occupied by this antagonist suffered increased attack by stem-boring beetles, grew more slowly, and experienced doubled mortality relative to trees occupied by the mutualistic ant. These results show that large mammals maintain cooperation within a widespread symbiosis and suggest complex cascading effects of megafaunal extinction.

  15. Temporal Dynamics and Resource Availability for Drosophilid Fruit Flies (Insecta, Diptera in a Gallery Forest in the Brazilian Savanna

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henrique Valadão

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Seasonality can cause severe bottlenecks in natural populations, even leading to local extinction. Large variation in resource availability may explain the bottlenecks, but the role of these variations is still poorly understood. The goal of this study was to analyze if temporal variations in the guild of drosophilids breeding in fruits of Mauritia flexuosa (Arecaceae can be explained by the shortage of this resource during the dry season. Fruits of M. flexuosa were collected over one year in a gallery forest located in the Central Brazilian Savanna. The drosophilid assemblage varied over time, with a lower density of species and of individuals in the dry season, when the percentage of colonized fruits was also smaller. These findings suggest that although the fruits were available during the dry season, they were underused. This way, the resource availability does not seem to regulate the community in the dry season.

  16. Temporal Dynamics and Resource Availability for Drosophilid Fruit Flies (Insect, Diptera) in a Gallery Forest in the Brazilian Savanna

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Valadao, H.; Du Vall Hay, J.; Tidon, R.

    2010-01-01

    Seasonality can cause severe bottlenecks in natural populations, even leading to local extinction. Large variation in resource availability may explain the bottlenecks, but the role of these variations is still poorly understood. The goal of this study was to analyze if temporal variations in the guild of drosophilids breeding in fruits of Mauritia flexuosa (Arecaceae) can be explained by the shortage of this resource during the dry season. Fruits of M. flexuosa were collected over one year in a gallery forest located in the Central Brazilian Savanna. The drosophilid assemblage varied over time, with a lower density of species and of individuals in the dry season, when the percentage of colonized fruits was also smaller. These findings suggest that although the fruits were available during the dry season, they were under used. This way, the resource availability does not seem to regulate the community in the dry season.

  17. GULLY’S MONITORING: MORFOMETRIC AND SEDIMENTS STUDY AT BRAZIL’S SAVANNA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roberto Reis Alves

    2005-05-01

    , until relatively high indices for the region between 12 and 16%. In the places where the declivity index is higher, associated to the Human kind occupation which causes a waterproofing of the ground, are where if perceives a bigger energy in the superficial draining, that in some intent rain hours can be responsible forremodelling significant in the forms of the urban landscapes. Therefore, the intention of the study is to understand the main transformations that the relief comes suffering, from the intensification of the flow of antropics actions in the Cerrado (Savanna and inside of all this context the intention is to guide quickly the degradation reorganization that the environment suffered and still it suffers, being searched indicating to understand the current problems there, in special those on to the degradation in the environment of the Cerrado, offering resources that can serve the recovery least or the of this environment.

  18. Methane fluxes from the mound-building termite species of North Australian savannas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jamali, H.; Livesely, S. J.; Arndt, S. K.; Dawes-Gromadzki, T.; Cook, G. D.; Hutley, L.

    2009-04-01

    Termites are estimated to contribute 3-19% to the global methane emissions. These estimates have large uncertainties because of the limited number of field-based studies and species studied, as well as issues of diel and seasonal variation. We measured methane fluxes from four common mound-building termite species (Microcerotermes nervosus, n=26; M. serratus, n=4; Tumulitermes pastinator, n=5; and Amitermes darwini, n=4) in tropical savannas near Darwin in the Northern Territory, Australia. Methane fluxes from replicated termite mounds were measured in the field using manual chambers with fluxes reported on a mound volume basis. Methane flux was measured in both wet and dry seasons and diel variation was investigated by measuring methane flux every 4 hours over a 24 hour period. Mound temperature was measured concurrently with flux to examine this relationship. In addition, five M. nervosus mounds removed from the field and incubated under controlled temperature conditions over a 24 hour period to remove the effect of varying temperature. During the observation campaigns, mean monthly minimum and maximum temperatures for February (wet season) were 24.7 and 30.8°C, respectively, and were 20.1 to 31.4 °C in June (dry season). Annual rainfall in 2008 for Darwin was 1970.1 mm, with a maximum of 670 mm falling in February and no rain in May and June. Methane fluxes were greatest in the wet season for all species, ranging from 265.1±101.1 (T. pastinator) to 2256.6±757.1 (M. serratus) µg CH4-C/m3/h. In the dry season, methane fluxes were at their lowest, ranging from 10.0±5.5 (T. pastinator) to 338.0±165.9 (M. serratus) µg CH4-C/m3/h. On a diel basis, methane fluxes were smallest at the coolest time of the day (~0700 hrs) and greatest at the warmest (~1400 hrs) for all species, and for both wet and dry seasons. Typical diel variation in flux from M. serratus dominated mounds ranged from 902.6±261.9 to 1392.1±408.1 µg CH4-C/m3/h in wet season and 99.6±57.4 to

  19. Classification and mapping of the composition and structure of dry woodland and savanna in the eastern Okavango Delta

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michelle J. Tedder

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available The dry woodland and savanna regions of the Okavango Delta form a transition zone between the Okavango Swamps and the Kalahari Desert and have been largely overlooked in terms of vegetation classification and mapping. This study focused on the species composition and height structure of this vegetation, with the aim of identifying vegetation classes and providing a vegetation map accompanied by quantitative data. Two hundred and fifty-six plots (50 m × 50 m were sampled and species cover abundance, total cover and structural composition were recorded. The plots were classified using agglomerative, hierarchical cluster analysis using group means and Bray-Curtis similarity and groups described using indicator species analysis. In total, 23 woody species and 28 grass species were recorded. Acacia erioloba and Colophospermum mopane were the most common woody species, whilst Urochloa mossambicensis, Panicum maximum, Dactyloctenium gigantiumand Eragrostis lehmanniana were the most widespread grasses. Eleven vegetation types were identified, with the most widespread being Short mixed mopane woodland, Tall mopane woodland and Tall mixed mopane woodland, covering 288.73 km2 (28%, 209.14 km2 (20% and 173.30 km2 (17% of the area, respectively. Despite their extensive area, these three vegetation types were the least species-rich, whilst Palm thornveld, Short mixed broadleaf woodland and Open mixed Acacia woodland were the most taxonomically variable. By contrast, Closed mixed Acacia woodland and Closed Acacia–Combretum woodland had the most limited distribution, accounting for less than 1% of the mapped area each.Conservation implications: The dry woodland and savanna vegetation of the Okavango Delta comprises a much wider suite of plant communities than the Acacia-dominated and Mopane-dominated classifications often used. This classification provided a more detailed understanding of this vegetation and essential background information for monitoring

  20. Nocturnal behavior by a diurnal ape, the West African chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes verus), in a savanna environment at Fongoli, Senegal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pruetz, Jill D

    2018-02-08

    I report on the nocturnal behavior of Fongoli chimpanzees in a savanna mosaic during different seasons and lunar phases and test the hypothesis that hot daytime temperatures influence activity at night. I predicted that apes would be more active at night during periods of greater lunar illuminosity given diurnal primates' lack of visual specializations for low-light conditions and in dry season months when water scarcity exacerbated heat stress. I observed chimpanzees for 403 hrs on 40 nights between 2007 and 2013 and categorized their activity as social, movement, or vocalization. I scored their activity as occurring after moonrise or before moonset and considered the influence of moon phase (fuller versus darker phases) as well as season on chimpanzee nocturnal behavior in the analyses. Results indicate that apes were more active after moonrise or before moonset during fuller moon phases in the dry season but not the wet season. Most night-time activity involved movement (travel or forage), followed by social behavior, and long-distance vocal communication. Animals in highly seasonal habitats often exhibit thermoregulatory adaptations but, like other primates, chimpanzees lack physiological mechanisms to combat thermal stress. This study provides evidence that they may exhibit behaviors that allow them to avoid high temperatures in a savanna environment, such as feeding and socializing at night during the hottest time of year and in the brightest moon phases. The results support theories invoking thermal stress as a selective pressure for hominins in open environments where heat would constrain temporal foraging niches, and suggest an adaptability of sleeping patterns in response to external factors. © 2018 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  1. A MODIS-Based Energy Balance to Estimate Evapotranspiration for Clear-Sky Days in Brazilian Tropical Savannas

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    Yadvinder S. Malhi

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Evapotranspiration (ET plays an important role in global climate dynamics and in primary production of terrestrial ecosystems; it represents the mass and energy transfer from the land to atmosphere. Limitations to measuring ET at large scales using ground-based methods have motivated the development of satellite remote sensing techniques. The purpose of this work is to evaluate the accuracy of the SEBAL algorithm for estimating surface turbulent heat fluxes at regional scale, using 28 images from MODIS. SEBAL estimates are compared with eddy-covariance (EC measurements and results from the hydrological model MGB-IPH. SEBAL instantaneous estimates of latent heat flux (LE yielded r 2= 0.64 and r2 = 0.62 over sugarcane croplands and savannas when compared against in situ EC estimates. At the same sites, daily aggregated estimates of LE were r 2 = 0.76 and r2 = 0.66, respectively. Energy balance closure showed that turbulent fluxes over sugarcane croplands were underestimated by 7% and 9% over savannas. Average daily ET from SEBAL is in close agreement with estimates from the hydrological model for an overlay of 38,100 km2 (r2 = 0.88. Inputs to which the algorithm is most sensitive are vegetation index (NDVI, gradient of temperature (dT to compute sensible heat flux (H and net radiation (Rn. It was verified that SEBAL has a tendency to overestimate results both at local and regional scales probably because of low sensitivity to soil moisture and water stress. Nevertheless the results confirm the potential of the SEBAL algorithm, when used with MODIS images for estimating instantaneous LE and daily ET from large areas.

  2. Seasonal regulation of condensed tannin consumption by free-ranging goats in a semi-arid savanna

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heitkӧnig, Ignas M. A.; Scogings, Peter F.; Hattas, Dawood; Dziba, Luthando E.; Prins, Herbert H. T.; de Boer, Willem F.

    2018-01-01

    Although condensed tannins (CTs) are known to reduce forage intake by mammalian herbivores in controlled experiments, few studies have tested these effects in the field. Thus the role of CTs on foraging ecology of free-ranging herbivores is inadequately understood. To investigate the effects of CTs under natural savanna conditions, we pre-dosed groups of goats with polyethylene glycol (PEG, a CT-neutralising chemical), CT powder or water before observing their foraging behaviour. While accounting for the effects of season and time of the day, we tested the hypothesis that herbivores forage in ways that reduce the intake rate (g DM per minute) of CTs. We expected pre-dosing goats with CTs to reduce CT intake rates by (1) consuming diets low in CTs, (2) reducing bite rates, (3) increasing the number of foraging bouts, or (4) reducing the length of foraging bouts. Lastly, (5) expected CT to have no influence the number of dietary forage species. In both wet and dry seasons, pre-dosing goats with CTs resulted in lower CT consumption rates compared to PEG goats which seemed relieved from the stress associated with CT consumption. During dry season, the number of dietary forage species was similar across treatments, although goats that were dosed with PEG significantly increased this number in the wet season. Dosing goats with PEG increased the number and length of browsing bouts compared to goats from the other treatments. Pre-loading goats with PEG also tended to increase bite rates on browse forages, which contributed to increased consumption rates of CTs. Based on the behavioural adjustments made by goats in this study and within the constraints imposed by chemical complexity in savanna systems, we concluded that herbivores under natural conditions foraged in ways that minimised CTs consumption. More research should further elucidate the mechanism through which CTs regulated feeding behaviour. PMID:29293513

  3. Effects of Precommercial Thinning and Midstory Control on Avian and Small Mammal Communities during Longleaf Pine Savanna Restoration.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lane, Vanessa R [Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College; Kilgo, John C [USDA Forest Service, Southern Research Station

    2015-01-01

    Abstract - Restoring longleaf pine (Pinus palustris Mill.) savanna is a goal of many southern land managers, and longleaf plantations may provide a mechanism for savanna restoration. However, the effects of silvicultural treatments used in the management of longleaf pine plantations on wildlife communities are relatively unknown. Beginning in 1994, we examined effects of longleaf pine restoration with plantation silviculture on avian and small mammal communities using four treatments in four 8- to 11- year-old plantations within the Savannah River Site in South Carolina. Treatments included prescribed burning every 3 to 5 years, plus: (1) no additional treatment (burn-only control); (2) precommercial thinning; (3) non-pine woody control with herbicides; and (4) combined thinning and woody control. We surveyed birds (1996-2003) using 50-m point counts and small mammals with removal trapping. Thinning and woody control alone had short-lived effects on avian communities, and the combination treatment increased avian parameters over the burn-only control in all years. Small mammal abundance showed similar trends as avian abundance for all three treatments when compared with the burn-only control, but only for 2 years post-treatment. Both avian and small mammal communities were temporarily enhanced by controlling woody vegetation with chemicals in addition to prescribed fire and thinning. Therefore, precommercial thinning in longleaf plantations, particularly when combined with woody control and prescribed fire, may benefit early-successional avian and small mammal communities by developing stand conditions more typical of natural longleaf stands maintained by periodic fire.

  4. Managing invasions at the cost of native habitat? An experimental test of the impact of fire on the invasion of Chromolaena odorata in a South African savanna

    OpenAIRE

    te Beest, Mariska; Cromsigt, Joris P. G. M.; Ngobese, Johan; Olff, Han

    2012-01-01

    Successfully managing invasive plants in natural systems is extremely difficult. Recently however, progress has been made with an approach focused on changing ecosystem processes through the disturbance regime. We performed a large-scale (3 ha) full-factorial field experiment in densely invaded woodland in Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park, a savanna reserve in South Africa, to study the effect of fire on the control of the pan-tropical invasive exotic shrub Chromolaena odorata in combination with the c...

  5. Extensive consumption of Tabebuia aurea (Manso) Benth. & Hook. (Bignoniaceae) nectar by parrots in a tecoma savanna in the southern Pantanal (Brazil)

    OpenAIRE

    Ragusa-Netto, J.

    2005-01-01

    Neotropical parrots forage for various food items such as seeds, fruit pulp, flowers, young leaves, and even arthropods. While foraging, many species wander over large areas that include both open and closed habitats. In this study, I examined parrot foraging activity during a brief synchronous and massive flowering in August 1998 in a tecoma savanna (dominated by Tabebuia aurea) in the southern Pantanal. Six parrot species, ranging from the small Brotogeris chiriri to the large Amazona aesti...

  6. Decay Functions of Soil Moisture: Implications for Land Cover Controls on Actual Evapotranspiration During the Wet Season of a West-African Savanna

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bassiouni, M.; Ceperley, N. C.; Mande, T.; Parlange, M. B.

    2012-04-01

    The West-African savanna experiences extreme seasonal climate. The role of vegetation and the impact of agriculture on the regional hydrology of these areas are not well understood. A better understanding of such phenomena is crucial, as water resources are becoming unstable and populations dependent on rain-fed agriculture are more vulnerable. This study examines soil moisture dynamics during the 2010 rainy season in the Singou River Basin, Burkina Faso. Volumetric soil water content and meteorological data are collected from seven stations of a wireless sensor network. This network covers representative types of land cover in the watershed including riverbank, wetland, open savanna, agricultural parkland, and forested upland savanna. Vegetation was also surveyed throughout the season. Here, we present parameterizations and exploratory analysis of soil moisture decay functions at each station considered. Results are compared to the seasonal evolution of soil moisture storage, potential evapotranspiration and vegetation density. Preliminary results suggest these soil moisture measurements may be essential to understanding actual evapotranspiration and the hydrological influence of the types of land cover in the watershed over time. These findings contribute to improved modeling of the ecohydrological behavior of the Singou River Basin and up-scaling of the sensor network data for regional water management purposes as part of an integrated research and development project, Info4Dourou.

  7. Phytolith analysis as a tool for palaeo-environmental studies: a case study of the reconstruction of the historical extent of oak savanna in the Willamette Valley, Oregon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirchholtes, Renske; van Mourik, Jan; Johnson, Bart

    2014-05-01

    Landscape-level restorations can be costly, so the effectiveness of the approach and the objectives of the restoration should be supported by a comprehensive investigation. The goal of the research presented here is to provide the basis for such a restoration effort using phytolith analyses. Fire suppression and loss of indigenous burning in the Willamette Valley, Oregon (USA) has led to near disappearance of the Oregon white oak savanna. Under suppressed fire regimes the shade-intolerant Garry oaks (Quercus garryana) are outcompeted by Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii). As a consequence, the Oregon white oak savanna has been reduced to floristic reconstructions (pollen and spores) are seldom preserved in the dry, oxidized sediments of savannahs, meaning an alternative line of evidence is required for their historical study. Phytoliths are small yet robust silica particles produced by most plants. Many phytoliths take on cell shapes diagnostic of specific plant lineages, acting as indicators of their past presence. Unlike pollen grains, phytoliths readily preserve in well-drained soils during intermittent dry periods characteristic of sites such as the Jim's Creek research area. By reconstructing locality-scale pre-settlement vegetation patterns at the Jim's Creek Research Area using phytoliths, we confirm the broader-scale pattern of tree encroachment. However, phytolith assemblages from over 150 years ago document the presence of pines and firs, suggesting savannas in the Willamette Valley were not necessarily always dominated by oaks.

  8. Land Cover Change in Northern Botswana: The Influence of Climate, Fire, and Elephants on Semi-Arid Savanna Woodlands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John Tyler Fox

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Complex couplings and feedback among climate, fire, and herbivory drive short- and long-term patterns of land cover change (LCC in savanna ecosystems. However, understanding of spatial and temporal LCC patterns in these environments is limited, particularly for semi-arid regions transitional between arid and more mesic climates. Here, we use post-classification analysis of Landsat TM (1990, ETM+ (2003, and OLI (2013 satellite imagery to classify and assess net and gross LCC for the Chobe District, a 21,000 km2 area encompassing urban, peri-urban, rural, communally-managed (Chobe Enclave, and protected land (Chobe National Park, CNP, and six protected forest reserves. We then evaluate spatiotemporal patterns of LCC in relation to precipitation, fire detections (MCD14M, 2001–2013 from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS, and dry season elephant (Loxodonta africana aerial survey data (2003, 2006, 2012, 2013. Woodland cover declined over the study period by 1514 km2 (16.2% of initial class total, accompanied by expansion of shrubland (1305 km2, 15.7% and grassland (265 km2, 20.3%. Net LCC differed importantly in protected areas, with higher woodland losses observed in forest reserves compared to the CNP. Loss of woodland was also higher in communally-managed land for the study period, despite gains from 2003–2013. Gross (class changes were characterized by extensive exchange between woodland and shrubland during both time steps, and a large expansion of shrubland into grassland and bare ground from 2003–2013. MODIS active fire detections were highly variable from year to year and among the different protected areas, ranging from 1.8 fires*year−1/km2 in the Chobe Forest Reserve to 7.1 fires*year−1/km2 in the Kasane Forest Reserve Extension. Clustering and timing of dry season fires suggests that ignitions were predominately from anthropogenic sources. Annual fire count was significantly related to total annual rainfall

  9. Evaluating the Effects of Fire on Semi-Arid Savanna Ecosystem Productivity Using Integrated Spectral and Gas Exchange Measurements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raub, H. D.; Jimenez, J. R.; Gallery, R. E.; Sutter, L., Jr.; Barron-Gafford, G.; Smith, W. K.

    2017-12-01

    Drylands account for 40% of the land surface and have been identified as increasingly important in driving interannual variability of the land carbon sink. Yet, understanding of dryland seasonal ecosystem productivity dynamics - termed Gross Primary Productivity (GPP) - is limited due to complex interactions between vegetation health, seasonal drought dynamics, a paucity of long-term measurements across these under-studied regions, and unanticipated disturbances from varying fire regimes. For instance, fire disturbance has been found to either greatly reduce post-fire GPP through vegetation mortality or enhance post-fire GPP though increased resource availability (e.g., water, light, nutrients, etc.). Here, we explore post-fire ecosystem recovery by evaluating seasonal GPP dynamics for two Ameriflux eddy covariance flux tower sites within the Santa Rita Experimental Range of southeastern Arizona: 1) the US-SRG savanna site dominated by a mix of grass and woody mesquite vegetation that was burned in May 2017, and 2) the US-SRM savanna site dominated by similar vegetation but unburned for the full measurement record. For each site, we collected leaf-level spectral and gas exchange measurements, as well as leaf-level chemistry and soil chemistry to characterize differences in nutrient availability and microbial activity throughout the 2017 growing season. From spectral data, we derived and evaluated multiple common vegetation metrics, including normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI), photochemical reflectivity index (PRI), near-infrared reflectance (NIRv), and MERIS terrestrial chlorophyll index (MTCI). Early results suggest rates of photosynthesis were enhanced at the burned site, with productivity increasing immediately following the onset of monsoonal precipitation; whereas initial photosynthesis at the unburned site remained relatively low following first monsoonal rains. MTCI values for burned vegetation appear to track higher levels of leaf-level nitrogen

  10. Estimating CH4 emission from paddy managed soils in southern guinea savanna zone of Nigeria using an integrated approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akpeokhai, Agatha; Menz, Gunter; Thonfeld, Frank; Akinluyi, Francis

    2016-04-01

    ESTIMATING CH4 EMISSION FROM PADDY MANAGED SOILS IN SOUTHERN GUINEA SAVANNA ZONE OF NIGERIA USING AN INTEGRATED APPROACH Akpeokhai Agatha 1, Menz Gunter 1, Thonfeld Frank 1, Akinluyi Francis 2 1 Remote Sensing Research Group (RSRG), Geography Institute, University of Bonn, Germany. 2 Department Remote Sensing and Geo-Science Information System, School of Earth and Mineral Science, Federal University of Technology, Akure Nigeria. Methane is one of the most important greenhouse gases as it has the second greatest climate forcing potential. Paddy fields have been identified to be sources of methane and Nigerian paddies are not left out. In Nigeria, the guinea savanna region is regarded as the bread basket of the nation and this area is one of the major rice producing regions in Nigeria. Its location in the food basket region of the country makes this part a very important study site. However, since Nigerian paddies contribute to methane emission by how much do these paddies contribute to the emissions? Also, so far, there limited studies on methane from rice fields in West Africa thus making this study a very important start off point. To answer this huge question, methane emission will be estimated using an integrated approach in the North Central part of Nigeria. Land use change cultivated to rice was analysed using Remote sensing techniques to determine the changes in land cultivated to rice. Methane emission from these identified rice fields will be estimated using the IPCC Tier 1 set of equations. First relevant indices (Normalized Differential Moisture Index, Normalized Differential Wetness Index and Rice Growth Vegetation Index) were generated to aid classification of rice fields using LANDSAT data from the USGS. Next the LANDSAT datasets were analyzed for land use change cultivated to rice from 1990 to 2014 to generate rice field maps. ERDAS Imagine, ARCGIS and ENVI tools were used to meet these spatial needs. Methane emissions from this region will be

  11. Ant-caterpillar antagonism at the community level: interhabitat variation of tritrophic interactions in a neotropical savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sendoya, Sebastián F; Oliveira, Paulo S

    2015-03-01

    Ant foraging on foliage can substantially affect how phytophagous insects use host plants and represents a high predation risk for caterpillars, which are important folivores. Ant-plant-herbivore interactions are especially pervasive in cerrado savanna due to continuous ant visitation to liquid food sources on foliage (extrafloral nectaries, insect honeydew). While searching for liquid rewards on plants, aggressive ants frequently attack or kill insect herbivores, decreasing their numbers. Because ants vary in diet and aggressiveness, their effect on herbivores also varies. Additionally, the differential occurrence of ant attractants (plant and insect exudates) on foliage produces variable levels of ant foraging within local floras and among localities. Here, we investigate how variation of ant communities and of traits among host plant species (presence or absence of ant attractants) can change the effect of carnivores (predatory ants) on herbivore communities (caterpillars) in a cerrado savanna landscape. We sampled caterpillars and foliage-foraging ants in four cerrado localities (70-460 km apart). We found that: (i) caterpillar infestation was negatively related with ant visitation to plants; (ii) this relationship depended on local ant abundance and species composition, and on local preference by ants for plants with liquid attractants; (iii) this was not related to local plant richness or plant size; (iv) the relationship between the presence of ant attractants and caterpillar abundance varied among sites from negative to neutral; and (v) caterpillars feeding on plants with ant attractants are more resistant to ant predation than those feeding on plants lacking attractants. Liquid food on foliage mediates host plant quality for lepidopterans by promoting generalized ant-caterpillar antagonism. Our study in cerrado shows that the negative effects of generalist predatory ants on herbivores are detectable at a community level, affecting patterns of abundance and

  12. Fluxes of CH4 and CO2 from soil and termite mounds in south Sudanian savanna of Burkina Faso (West Africa)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brümmer, Christian; Papen, Hans; Wassmann, Reiner; Brüggemann, Nicolas

    2009-03-01

    The contribution of West African savanna ecosystems to global greenhouse gas budgets is highly uncertain. In this study we quantified soil-atmosphere CH4 and CO2 fluxes in the southwest of Burkina Faso from June to September 2005 and from April to September 2006 at four different agricultural fields planted with sorghum (n = 2), cotton, and peanut and at a natural savanna site with termite (Cubitermes fungifaber) mounds. During the rainy season both CH4 uptake and CH4 emission were observed in the savanna, which was on average a CH4 source of 2.79 and 2.28 kg CH4-C ha-1 a-1 in 2005 and 2006, respectively. The crop sites were an average CH4 sink of -0.67 and -0.70 kg CH4-C ha-1 a-1 in the 2 years, without significant seasonal variation. Mean annual soil respiration ranged between 3.86 and 5.82 t CO2-C ha-1 a-1 in the savanna and between 2.50 and 4.51 t CO2-C ha-1 a-1 at the crop sites. CH4 emission from termite mounds was 2 orders of magnitude higher than soil CH4 emissions, whereas termite CO2 emissions were of the same order of magnitude as soil CO2 emissions. Termite CH4 and CO2 release in the savanna contributed 8.8% and 0.4% to the total soil CH4 and CO2 emissions, respectively. At the crop sites, where termite mounds had been almost completely removed because of land use change, termite fluxes were insignificant. Mound density-based upscaling of termite CH4 fluxes resulted in a global termite CH4 source of 0.9 Tg a-1, which corresponds to 0.15% of the total global CH4 budget of 582 Tg a-1, hence significantly lower than those obtained previously by biomass-based calculations. This study emphasizes that land use change, which is of high relevance in this region, has particularly affected soil CH4 fluxes in the past and might still do so in the future.

  13. The Spatial Pattern and Interactions of Woody Plants on the Temperate Savanna of Inner Mongolia, China: The Effects of Alternating Seasonal Grazing-Mowing Regimes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiao Wang

    Full Text Available Ulmus pumila tree-dominated temperate savanna, which is distributed widely throughout the forest-steppe ecotone on the Mongolian Plateau, is a relatively stable woody-herbaceous complex ecosystem in northern China. Relatively more attention has been paid to the degradation of typical steppe areas, whereas less focus has been placed on the succession of this typical temperate savanna under the present management regime. In this study, we established 3 sample plots 100 m×100 m in size along a gradient of fixed distances from one herder's stationary site and then surveyed all the woody plants in these plots. A spatial point pattern analysis was employed to clarify the spatial distribution and interaction of these woody plants. The results indicated that old U. pumila trees (DBH ≥ 20 cm showed a random distribution and that medium U. pumila trees (5 cm ≤ DBH < 20 cm showed an aggregated distribution at a smaller scale and a random distribution at a larger scale; few or no juvenile trees (DBH < 5 cm were present, and seedlings (without DBH formed aggregations in all 3 plots. These findings can be explained by an alternate seasonal grazing-mowing regime (exclosure in summer, mowing in autumn and grazing in winter and spring; the shrubs in all 3 plots exist along a grazing gradient that harbors xerophytic and mesophytic shrubs. Of these shrubs, xerophytic shrubs show significant aggregation at a smaller scale (0-5.5 m, whereas mesophytic shrubs show significant aggregation at a larger scale (0-25 m, which may be the result of the dual effects of grazing pressure and climate change. Medium trees and seedlings significantly facilitate the distributions of xerophytic shrubs and compete significantly with mesophytic shrubs due to differences in water use strategies. We conclude that the implementation of an alternative grazing-mowing regime results in xerophytic shrub encroachment or existence, breaking the chain of normal succession in a U. pumila

  14. Integrating Dendrochronology, Climate and Satellite Remote Sensing to Better Understand Savanna Landscape Dynamics in the Okavango Delta, Botswana

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jane Southworth

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available This research examines the integration and potential uses of linkages between climate dynamics, savanna vegetation and landscape level processes within a highly vulnerable region, both in terms of climate variability and social systems. We explore the combined applications of two time-series methodologies: (1 climate signals detected in tree ring growth, from published literature, chronologies from the International Tree-Ring Data Bank, and minimal preliminary field data; and (2 new primary production (NPP data of vegetation cover over time derived from remotely sensed analyses. Both time-series are related to the regional patterns of precipitation, the principle driver of plant growth in the area. The approach is temporally and spatially multiscalar and examines the relationships between vegetation cover, type and amount, and precipitation shifts. We review literature linking dendrochronology, climate, and remotely sensed imagery, and, in addition, provide unique preliminary analyses from a dry study site located on the outer limit of the Okavango Delta. The work demonstrates integration across the different data sources, to provide a more holistic view of landscape level processes occurring in the last 30-50 years. These results corroborate the water-limited nature of the region and the dominance of precipitation in controlling vegetation growth. We present this integrative analysis of vegetation and climate change, as a prospective approach to facilitate the development of long-term climate/vegetation change records across multiple scales.

  15. Anthropogenic edges, isolation and the flowering time and fruit set of Anadenanthera peregrina, a cerrado savanna tree.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Athayde, Eduardo Anversa; Morellato, Leonor Patrícia Cerdeira

    2014-05-01

    Fragmentation exposes plants to extreme environmental conditions with implications for species phenology and reproduction.We investigated whether isolation and edge effects influence size, flowering time, fruit set, and seedling establishment of Anadenanthera peregrina var. falcata. We compared trees in the interior (n =85), and on the edge (n =74) of a cerrado savanna fragment as well as in a pasture (n =26) with respect to size, flowering phenology, flower and fruit production, fruit and seed set, predispersal seed predation, and seedling establishment. Trees in the pasture were larger and produced a higher number of flowers and fruits than trees on the edge and interior, yet seed set did not differ across environments. The plant size structure explained the flower and fruit production, and the self-compatibility breeding system caused a similar seed set regardless of the environment. First flowering was later and fruit set higher in the interior. We argue that time of first flower influenced the fruit set of Anadenathera. Edge and isolated trees started to flower earlier as a response to microclimatic conditions--mainly temperature--reducing the fruit set. Predispersal seed predation was lower among pasture trees. Conversely, we found seedlings only on the edge and in the interior of cerrado, suggesting that the pasture was of poor quality habitat for Anadenanthera recruitment. Isolation affected the plant size structure and reproduction of Anadenanthera trees. Studies comparing plant phenology under contrasting environmental conditions may offer clues on how global change may affect plant reproduction in the tropics.

  16. Genetic approach to the development of crop production systems on savanna soils of the Eastern plains of Colombia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Valencia R, Ruben Alfredo; Leal Monsalve, Dario

    1996-01-01

    The savanna region of the eastern plains of Colombia is characterized by its low fertility with reduced soil content of calcium (Ca), magnesium (Mg), potassium (K), phosphorus (P) and sulfur (S); low pH; high exchangeable aluminum (Al); high al saturation and high soil fragility, however these acid soils offer several advantages which make them ideal for sustainable agriculture, such as 1) abundant and adequate rainfall distribution from April to November, 2) flat topography, 3) good physical soil characteristics and, 4) large potential area. The eastern plains of Colombia comprise about 26 million hectares, 53% of them have good drainage and are currently under extensive cattle grazing systems with no or little technology practices and inherent low productivity. Low cost soil management technology is needed to utilize efficient/y these vast areas. Key technology components must include the identification of suitable crop species and cultivars that can tolerate al and absorb N in the presence of excess Al. Research on crop production systems to incorporate this huge area into food production has been led by ICA and CORPOICA toward the generation of crop varieties suitable to acid soil conditions and the development of adequate technology practices to preserve the ecosystem. The goal of the systemic approach is to develop sustainable technology with the participation of a multidisciplinary group

  17. Species-environment relationship in the herb-subshrub layer of a moist Savanna site, Federal District, Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Munhoz, C B R; Felfili, J M; Rodrigues, C

    2008-02-01

    The soils are seasonally or permanently saturated in the moist grassland savanna, locally known as Campo Limpo Umido. Soil moisture variation seems to determine spatial distribution of communities. The objective of this study is to analyse the relationship between environmental variables and the patterns of spatial distribution of species in the herbaceous-subshrub layer of an area of moist grassland at the Agua Limpa Farm, Brasília, DF (15 degrees 56' to 15 degrees 59' S and 47 degrees 55' to 47 degrees 58' W Gr.). An area of 400 x 400 m was divided into four sections of 200 x 200 m where four transects were randomly sampled. A line intercept method was adopted for the phytossociological study. Superficial soils samples (0-20 cm) were collected for chemical and textural analyses. Gravimetric soil moisture was measured quarterly during the study-year. A total of 85 species in 67 genera and 24 families were found. The diversity was high, Shannon's index, H', was 2.60 nats.cover(-1). Floristic composition of the transects in soils with a high gravimetric soil moisture and high content of organic matter and sand differed from those transects in soils with a lower gravimetric soil moisture indicating seasonal variation. A Canonical Correspondence Analysis (CCA) showed significant correlations between soil texture and soil moisture features and species distribution. Gravimetric soil moisture, organic matter, clay, silt and sand were significantly correlated to species distribution in the moist grassland determining mosaics in the vegetation.

  18. Evolution of evapotranspiration and water stress of oak savanna vegetation in the Iberian Peninsula (2001-2015

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    M. P. González-Dugo

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this work is to provide new insights about the effect of soil water deficit on the vegetation of Mediterranean oak savanna. The evolution of evapotranspiration (ET and vegetation water stress over this ecosystem, in the Iberian Peninsula, has been monitored for fifteen years through the application of a remote sensing thermal-based energy balance model. The Surface Energy Balance System (SEBS has been applied, on a monthly timescale from January 2001 to December 2015, using input satellite and meteorological reanalysis databases. The model performance has been evaluated under these conditions by comparison with field measurements. The estimation of energy fluxes yielded reasonable agreements with observations (RMSD=14-20 W·m–2 for the radiative fluxes and RMSD=26-29 W·m–2 for the turbulent ones and have led to characterize the main drought events occurred during the study period, and to quantify their effects on the vegetation coverage and production. The most generalized and severe events (2004/2005 and 2011/2012 and their impact on different vegetation strata, oaks and grasslands, are further analyzed.

  19. IN VITRO ANTIMETHANOGENIC PROPERTIES OF SOME PLANTS ADAPTED TO THE FLOODABLE SAVANNA CONDITIONS OF ARAUCA DEPARTMENT, COLOMBIA

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    Oscar Mauricio Velez Terranova

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available The methanogenic potential and nutritional quality of nineteen plants adapted to the dry and rainy seasons of the Arauca floodable savannas was evaluated. Each plant was incubated anaerobically with rumen fluid at 39 °C for 24h, after incubation period, gas production, methane, volatile fatty acids and dry matter degradation was determined. Among the plants, crude protein values ranged between 6.87-28.22%; neutral detergent fiber was between 35.2 - 71.26%, while the ether extract, ash and nonstructural carbohydrate levels ranged between 1.35 - 6.65, 2.43 - 5.27 and 11.47 - 35.64%, respectively. Gas production and methane were significant correlated (r = 0.84. The species Galactia jussiaeana, Belencita nemorosa, Ambrosia peruviana and Enterolobium schomburgkii showed high values of dry matter degradation (45.40 - 49.13%, VFA (0.84 - 1.37 mmol and low methane production (2.18 - 6.90 ml / g DM degraded. These parameters were similar or better to those found in the species Leucaena leucocephala. The results suggest that these plants present useful compounds to reduce ruminal methanogenesis without affecting the diet digestibility, however further studies are required to assess the persistence of antimethanogenic effect, dosage, consumption and animal performance.

  20. Farm family effects of adopting improved and hybrid sorghum seed in the Sudan Savanna of West Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smale, Melinda; Assima, Amidou; Kergna, Alpha; Thériault, Véronique; Weltzien, Eva

    2018-01-01

    Uptake of improved sorghum varieties in the Sudan Savanna of West Africa has been limited, despite the economic importance of the crop and long-term investments in sorghum improvement. One reason why is that attaining substantial yield advantages has been difficult in this harsh, heterogeneous growing environment. Release in Mali of the first sorghum hybrids in Sub-Saharan Africa that have been developed primarily from local germplasm has the potential to change this situation. Utilizing plot data collected in Mali, we explain the adoption of improved seed with an ordered logit model and apply a multivalued treatment effects model to measure impacts on farm families, differentiating between improved varieties and hybrids. Since farm families both consume and sell their sorghum, we consider effects on consumption patterns as well as productivity. Status within the household, conferred by gender combined with marital status, generation, and education, is strongly related to the improvement status of sorghum seed planted in these extended family households. Effects of hybrid use on yields are large, widening the range of food items consumed, reducing the share of sorghum in food purchases, and contributing to a greater share of the sorghum harvest sold. Use of improved seed appears to be associated with a shift toward consumption of other cereals, and also to greater sales shares. Findings support on-farm research concerning yield advantages, also suggesting that the use of well-adapted sorghum hybrids could contribute to diet diversification and the crop's commercialization by smallholders.

  1. Effects of gut passage on the germination of seeds ingested by didelphid marsupials in a neotropical savanna

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    Leonardo Guimarães Lessa

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available We analyzed the effects that passage through the guts of seven didelphid species had on the seed germination of 10 plant species. This study was conducted in an area of riparian woodland in a cerrado (savanna reserve in southeastern Brazil. We found seeds of 23 angiosperm species in 427 fecal samples obtained from seven didelphid species. The plant families most often represented by the seeds found in the fecal samples were Melastomataceae (5 species and Rubiaceae (4 species . Most gut-passed seeds showed no significant difference in germinability when compared with the hand-extracted seeds. Among the ingested seeds, only those of Clidemia urceolata DC. (Melastomataceae and Myrcia sp. (Myrtaceae showed an increase in germinability (final proportion of germinated seeds, indicating that didelphid gut passage does not always benefit seed germination. The average germination time of consumed seeds ranged from 12 days (Cipocereus minensis (Werderm. Ritter to 171 days (Cordiera sessilis (Vell. Kuntze. The small number of seeds destroyed after gut passage and the results obtained during the germination experiments underscore the importance of didelphid marsupials to the dynamics of plant reproduction, especially those of small-seeded cerrado species.

  2. Water-soluble Organic Components in Aerosols Associated with Savanna Fires in Southern Africa: Identification, Evolution and Distribution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Song; Hegg, Dean A.; Hobbs, Peter V.; Kirchstetter, Thomas W.; Magi, Brian I.; Sadilek, Martin

    2003-01-01

    During the SAFARI 2000 field campaign, both smoke aerosols from savanna fires and haze aerosols in the boundary layer and in the free troposphere were collected from an aircraft in southern Africa. These aerosol samples were analyzed for their water-soluble chemical components, particularly the organic species. A novel technique, electrospray ionization-ion trap mass spectrometry, was used concurrently with an ion chromatography system to analyze for carbohydrate species. Seven carbohydrates, seven organic acids, five metallic elements, and three inorganic anions were identified and quantified. On the average, these 22 species comprised 36% and 27% of the total aerosol mass in haze and smoke aerosols, respectively. For the smoke aerosols, levoglucosan was the most abundant carbohydrate species, while gluconic acid was tentatively identified as the most abundant organic acid. The mass abundance and possible source of each class of identified species are discussed, along with their possible formation pathways. The combustion phase of a fire had an impact on the chemical composition of the emitted aerosols. Secondary formation of sulfate, nitrate, levoglucosan, and several organic acids occurred during the initial aging of smoke aerosols. It is likely that under certain conditions, some carbohydrate species in smoke aerosols, such as levoglucosan, were converted to organic acids during upward transport.

  3. Technology Adoption and Productivity Difference among Growers of New Rice for Africa in Savanna Zone of Nigeria

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    Rahji, MAY.

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available The use of New Rice for Africa (NERICA and complementary rice production technology is being promoted by Nigeria government in order to increase productivity of upland rice farming. This study examines the levels, determinants and effects of complementary technology adoption on productivity of NERICA rice farming. Data for the study were obtained from sample survey of 227 NERICA rice farmers in the guinea savanna zone using multistage sampling technique. Data collected were analyzed using Tobit regression model and Cobb-Douglas production function. Results showed that the average technology score was 52.1 percent (+ 0.242. Fifty-five percent of the farmers who scored above the mean were categorized as low technology users. Tobit regression estimation shows that farmers' technology score was affected significantly (P< 0.05 by farmer's level of education (0.0127, extension visit (0.0145, farming experience (0.0085, land ownership status (0.0687, credit use (0.0698 and level of rice commercialization (0.3783. Cobb-Douglas production estimation shows a neutrally outward shift in production function as the level of complementary technology increases, indicating increasing productivity. Thus, promotion of complementary technology in NERICA rice production is a worthwhile effort and should continue to be funded. Improvement of those factors that significantly affect adoption of complementary technology is recommended.

  4. Beneficial Effects of Ants and Spiders on the Reproductive Value of Eriotheca gracilipes (Malvaceae) in a Tropical Savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stefani, Vanessa; Pires, Tayna Lopes; Torezan-Silingardi, Helena Maura; Del-Claro, Kleber

    2015-01-01

    Predators affect plant fitness when they forage on them and reduce the action of herbivores. Our study evaluates the complementary effects of spiders and ants that visit the extrafloral nectaries of Eriotheca gracilipes (Malvaceae) on the production of fruits and viable seeds of these savanna trees. Four experimental groups were established: control group - with free access of spiders and ants; exclusion group - spiders and ants excluded; ant group - absence of spiders; and spider group - absence of ants. The presence of ants reduced the spider richness; however, the presence of spiders did not affect the ant richness. A significantly higher number of fruits per buds were found in the presence of spiders alone or spiders and ants together (control group) compared with the absence of both predators (exclusion group). The number of seeds per fruits and seed viability were higher in the control group. This is the first study showing that spiders and ants may exert a positive and complementary effect on the reproductive value of an extrafloral nectaried plant. Mostly the impact of ants and/or spiders on herbivores is considered, whereas our study reinforces the importance of evaluating the effect of multiple predators simultaneously, exploring how the interactions among predators with distinct skills may affect the herbivores and the plants on which they forage.

  5. Imprint of oaks on nitrogen availability and δ15N in California grassland-savanna: A case of enhanced N inputs?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perakis, S.S.; Kellogg, C.H.

    2007-01-01

    Woody vegetation is distributed patchily in many arid and semi-arid ecosystems, where it is often associated with elevated nitrogen (N) pools and availability in islands of fertility. We measured N availability and δ15N in paired blue-oak versus annual grass dominated patches to characterize the causes and consequences of spatial variation in N dynamics of grassland-savanna in Sequoia-Kings Canyon National Park. We found significantly greater surface soil N pools (0–20 cm) in oak patches compared to adjacent grass areas across a 700 m elevation gradient from foothills to the savanna-forest boundary. N accumulation under oaks was associated with a 0.6‰ depletion in soil δ15N relative to grass patches. Results from a simple δ15N mass balance simulation model, constrained by surface soil N and δ15N measured in the field, suggest that the development of islands of N fertility under oaks can be traced primarily to enhanced N inputs. Net N mineralization and percent nitrification in laboratory incubations were consistently higher under oaks across a range of experimental soil moisture regimes, suggesting a scenario whereby greater N inputs to oak patches result in net N accumulation and enhanced N cycling, with a potential for greater nitrate loss as well. N concentrations of three common herbaceous annual plants were nearly 50% greater under oak than in adjacent grass patches, with community composition shifted towards more N-demanding species under oaks. We find that oaks imprint distinct N-rich islands of fertility that foster local feedback between soil N cycling, plant N uptake, and herbaceous community composition. Such patch-scale differences in N inputs and plant–soil interactions increase biogeochemical heterogeneity in grassland-savanna ecosystems and may shape watershed-level responses to chronic N deposition.

  6. Influence of Fire Mosaics, Habitat Characteristics and Cattle Disturbance on Mammals in Fire-Prone Savanna Landscapes of the Northern Kimberley.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Radford, Ian J; Gibson, Lesley A; Corey, Ben; Carnes, Karin; Fairman, Richard

    2015-01-01

    Patch mosaic burning, in which fire is used to produce a mosaic of habitat patches representative of a range of fire histories ('pyrodiversity'), has been widely advocated to promote greater biodiversity. However, the details of desired fire mosaics for prescribed burning programs are often unspecified. Threatened small to medium-sized mammals (35 g to 5.5 kg) in the fire-prone tropical savannas of Australia appear to be particularly fire-sensitive. Consequently, a clear understanding of which properties of fire mosaics are most instrumental in influencing savanna mammal populations is critical. Here we use mammal capture data, remotely sensed fire information (i.e. time since last fire, fire frequency, frequency of late dry season fires, diversity of post-fire ages in 3 km radius, and spatial extent of recently burnt, intermediate and long unburnt habitat) and structural habitat attributes (including an index of cattle disturbance) to examine which characteristics of fire mosaics most influence mammals in the north-west Kimberley. We used general linear models to examine the relationship between fire mosaic and habitat attributes on total mammal abundance and richness, and the abundance of the most commonly detected species. Strong negative associations of mammal abundance and richness with frequency of late dry season fires, the spatial extent of recently burnt habitat (post-fire age fire age classes in the models. Our results indicate that both a high frequency of intense late dry season fires and extensive, recently burnt vegetation are likely to be detrimental to mammals in the north Kimberley. A managed fire mosaic that reduces large scale and intense fires, including the retention of ≥4 years unburnt patches, will clearly benefit savanna mammals. We also highlighted the importance of fire mosaics that retain sufficient shelter for mammals. Along with fire, it is clear that grazing by introduced herbivores also needs to be reduced so that habitat quality is

  7. Assessment of UAV and Ground-Based Structure from Motion with Multi-View Stereo Photogrammetry in a Gullied Savanna Catchment

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    Jack Koci

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Structure from Motion with Multi-View Stereo photogrammetry (SfM-MVS is increasingly used in geoscience investigations, but has not been thoroughly tested in gullied savanna systems. The aim of this study was to test the accuracy of topographic models derived from aerial (via Unmanned Aerial Vehicle, ‘UAV’ and ground-based (via handheld digital camera, ‘ground’ SfM-MVS in modelling hillslope gully systems in a dry-tropical savanna, and to assess the strengths and limitations of the approach at a hillslope scale and an individual gully scale. UAV surveys covered three separate hillslope gully systems (with areas of 0.412–0.715 km2, while ground surveys assessed individual gullies within the broader systems (with areas of 350–750 m2. SfM-MVS topographic models, including Digital Surface Models (DSM and dense point clouds, were compared against RTK-GPS point data and a pre-existing airborne LiDAR Digital Elevation Model (DEM. Results indicate that UAV SfM-MVS can deliver topographic models with a resolution and accuracy suitable to define gully systems at a hillslope scale (e.g., approximately 0.1 m resolution with 0.4–1.2 m elevation error, while ground-based SfM-MVS is more capable of quantifying gully morphology (e.g., approximately 0.01 m resolution with 0.04–0.1 m elevation error. Despite difficulties in reconstructing vegetated surfaces, uncertainty as to optimal survey and processing designs, and high computational demands, this study has demonstrated great potential for SfM-MVS to be used as a cost-effective tool to aid in the mapping, modelling and management of hillslope gully systems at different scales, in savanna landscapes and elsewhere.

  8. Comparing the Dry Season In-Situ Leaf Area Index (LAI Derived from High-Resolution RapidEye Imagery with MODIS LAI in a Namibian Savanna

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    Manuel J. Mayr

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available The Leaf Area Index (LAI is one of the most frequently applied measures to characterize vegetation and its dynamics and functions with remote sensing. Satellite missions, such as NASA’s Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS operationally produce global datasets of LAI. Due to their role as an input to large-scale modeling activities, evaluation and verification of such datasets are of high importance. In this context, savannas appear to be underrepresented with regards to their heterogeneous appearance (e.g., tree/grass-ratio, seasonality. Here, we aim to examine the LAI in a heterogeneous savanna ecosystem located in Namibia’s Owamboland during the dry season. Ground measurements of LAI are used to derive a high-resolution LAI model with RapidEye satellite data. This model is related to the corresponding MODIS LAI/FPAR (Fraction of Absorbed Photosynthetically Active Radiation scene (MOD15A2 in order to evaluate its performance at the intended annual minimum during the dry season. Based on a field survey we first assessed vegetation patterns from species composition and elevation for 109 sites. Secondly, we measured in situ LAI to quantitatively estimate the available vegetation (mean = 0.28. Green LAI samples were then empirically modeled (LAImodel with high resolution RapidEye imagery derived Difference Vegetation Index (DVI using a linear regression (R2 = 0.71. As indicated by several measures of model performance, the comparison with MOD15A2 revealed moderate consistency mostly due to overestimation by the aggregated LAImodel. Model constraints aside, this study may point to important issues for MOD15A2 in savannas concerning the underlying MODIS Land Cover product (MCD12Q1 and a potential adjustment by means of the MODIS Burned Area product (MCD45A1.

  9. Are There Consistent Grazing Indicators in Drylands? Testing Plant Functional Types of Various Complexity in South Africa’s Grassland and Savanna Biomes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linstädter, Anja; Schellberg, Jürgen; Brüser, Katharina; Moreno García, Cristian A.; Oomen, Roelof J.; du Preez, Chris C.; Ruppert, Jan C.; Ewert, Frank

    2014-01-01

    Despite our growing knowledge on plants’ functional responses to grazing, there is no consensus if an optimum level of functional aggregation exists for detecting grazing effects in drylands. With a comparative approach we searched for plant functional types (PFTs) with a consistent response to grazing across two areas differing in climatic aridity, situated in South Africa’s grassland and savanna biomes. We aggregated herbaceous species into PFTs, using hierarchical combinations of traits (from single- to three-trait PFTs). Traits relate to life history, growth form and leaf width. We first confirmed that soil and grazing gradients were largely independent from each other, and then searched in each biome for PFTs with a sensitive response to grazing, avoiding confounding with soil conditions. We found no response consistency, but biome-specific optimum aggregation levels. Three-trait PFTs (e.g. broad-leaved perennial grasses) and two-trait PFTs (e.g. perennial grasses) performed best as indicators of grazing effects in the semi-arid grassland and in the arid savanna biome, respectively. Some PFTs increased with grazing pressure in the grassland, but decreased in the savanna. We applied biome-specific grazing indicators to evaluate if differences in grazing management related to land tenure (communal versus freehold) had effects on vegetation. Tenure effects were small, which we mainly attributed to large variability in grazing pressure across farms. We conclude that the striking lack of generalizable PFT responses to grazing is due to a convergence of aridity and grazing effects, and unlikely to be overcome by more refined classification approaches. Hence, PFTs with an opposite response to grazing in the two biomes rather have a unimodal response along a gradient of additive forces of aridity and grazing. The study advocates for hierarchical trait combinations to identify localized indicator sets for grazing effects. Its methodological approach may also be

  10. Are there consistent grazing indicators in Drylands? Testing plant functional types of various complexity in South Africa's Grassland and Savanna Biomes.

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    Anja Linstädter

    Full Text Available Despite our growing knowledge on plants' functional responses to grazing, there is no consensus if an optimum level of functional aggregation exists for detecting grazing effects in drylands. With a comparative approach we searched for plant functional types (PFTs with a consistent response to grazing across two areas differing in climatic aridity, situated in South Africa's grassland and savanna biomes. We aggregated herbaceous species into PFTs, using hierarchical combinations of traits (from single- to three-trait PFTs. Traits relate to life history, growth form and leaf width. We first confirmed that soil and grazing gradients were largely independent from each other, and then searched in each biome for PFTs with a sensitive response to grazing, avoiding confounding with soil conditions. We found no response consistency, but biome-specific optimum aggregation levels. Three-trait PFTs (e.g. broad-leaved perennial grasses and two-trait PFTs (e.g. perennial grasses performed best as indicators of grazing effects in the semi-arid grassland and in the arid savanna biome, respectively. Some PFTs increased with grazing pressure in the grassland, but decreased in the savanna. We applied biome-specific grazing indicators to evaluate if differences in grazing management related to land tenure (communal versus freehold had effects on vegetation. Tenure effects were small, which we mainly attributed to large variability in grazing pressure across farms. We conclude that the striking lack of generalizable PFT responses to grazing is due to a convergence of aridity and grazing effects, and unlikely to be overcome by more refined classification approaches. Hence, PFTs with an opposite response to grazing in the two biomes rather have a unimodal response along a gradient of additive forces of aridity and grazing. The study advocates for hierarchical trait combinations to identify localized indicator sets for grazing effects. Its methodological approach may

  11. Are there consistent grazing indicators in Drylands? Testing plant functional types of various complexity in South Africa's Grassland and Savanna Biomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linstädter, Anja; Schellberg, Jürgen; Brüser, Katharina; Moreno García, Cristian A; Oomen, Roelof J; du Preez, Chris C; Ruppert, Jan C; Ewert, Frank

    2014-01-01

    Despite our growing knowledge on plants' functional responses to grazing, there is no consensus if an optimum level of functional aggregation exists for detecting grazing effects in drylands. With a comparative approach we searched for plant functional types (PFTs) with a consistent response to grazing across two areas differing in climatic aridity, situated in South Africa's grassland and savanna biomes. We aggregated herbaceous species into PFTs, using hierarchical combinations of traits (from single- to three-trait PFTs). Traits relate to life history, growth form and leaf width. We first confirmed that soil and grazing gradients were largely independent from each other, and then searched in each biome for PFTs with a sensitive response to grazing, avoiding confounding with soil conditions. We found no response consistency, but biome-specific optimum aggregation levels. Three-trait PFTs (e.g. broad-leaved perennial grasses) and two-trait PFTs (e.g. perennial grasses) performed best as indicators of grazing effects in the semi-arid grassland and in the arid savanna biome, respectively. Some PFTs increased with grazing pressure in the grassland, but decreased in the savanna. We applied biome-specific grazing indicators to evaluate if differences in grazing management related to land tenure (communal versus freehold) had effects on vegetation. Tenure effects were small, which we mainly attributed to large variability in grazing pressure across farms. We conclude that the striking lack of generalizable PFT responses to grazing is due to a convergence of aridity and grazing effects, and unlikely to be overcome by more refined classification approaches. Hence, PFTs with an opposite response to grazing in the two biomes rather have a unimodal response along a gradient of additive forces of aridity and grazing. The study advocates for hierarchical trait combinations to identify localized indicator sets for grazing effects. Its methodological approach may also be useful

  12. Spatio-Temporal Dynamics in Land Use and Habitat Fragmentation within a Protected Area Dedicated to Tourism in a Sudanian Savanna of West Africa

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    Dimobe Kangbéni

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Nazinga Game Ranch (NGR is a reserve in Burkina Faso involving local communities for securing biodiversity through sustainable management. Yet, its ecosystems are threatened by increasing number of elephants and illegal human activities. Renowned as a model of wildlife participatory management, NGR has mainly been studied for its animal wildlife only. The aim of this study was to uncover ecological effects of recent land management on savanna habitats including tourism, and to conclude on more sustainable options, land use/land cover (LULC changes and vegetation dynamics in NGR were analyzed. This was accomplished with multi-temporal change detection using Landsat images of 1984, 2002 and 2013 to map seven representative LULC classification categories, and quantitative indices of landscape metrics. The results showed that the LULC dynamics in NGR from 1984 to 2013 was mainly characterized by an expansion of gallery forest, tree savanna and agricultural area and a reduction of shrub savanna, woodland and bare soils. From 2002 to 2013, fragmentation in all land cover types increased at the landscape level, whereas at the class level, it decreased for woodland. Our findings provided evidence of habitat degradation in NGR, due to extensive agriculture, tourism and growing of elephants’ population. According to the original management goals and the purposes of the reserve, both fauna and tourism are to be maintained and sustained in a sustainable way. Adaptation of land use and targeted wildlife management are the main requirements for avoiding further degradation of vegetation and thus of the existence basis of local inhabitants, animals and tourism.

  13. A Landscape-Scale, Applied Fire Management Experiment Promotes Recovery of a Population of the Threatened Gouldian Finch, Erythrura gouldiae, in Australia's Tropical Savannas.

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    Sarah Legge

    Full Text Available Fire is an integral part of savanna ecology and changes in fire patterns are linked to biodiversity loss in savannas worldwide. In Australia, changed fire regimes are implicated in the contemporary declines of small mammals, riparian species, obligate-seeding plants and grass seed-eating birds. Translating this knowledge into management to recover threatened species has proved elusive. We report here on a landscape-scale experiment carried out by the Australian Wildlife Conservancy (AWC on Mornington Wildlife Sanctuary in northwest Australia. The experiment was designed to understand the response of a key savanna bird guild to fire, and to use that information to manage fire with the aim of recovering a threatened species population. We compared condition indices among three seed-eating bird species--one endangered (Gouldian finch and two non-threatened (long-tailed finch and double-barred finch--from two large areas (> 2,830 km2 with initial contrasting fire regimes ('extreme': frequent, extensive, intense fire; versus 'benign': less frequent, smaller, lower intensity fires. Populations of all three species living with the extreme fire regime had condition indices that differed from their counterparts living with the benign fire regime, including higher haematocrit levels in some seasons (suggesting higher levels of activity required to find food, different seasonal haematocrit profiles, higher fat scores in the early wet season (suggesting greater food uncertainty, and then lower muscle scores later in the wet season (suggesting prolonged food deprivation. Gouldian finches also showed seasonally increasing stress hormone concentrations with the extreme fire regime. Cumulatively, these patterns indicated greater nutritional stress over many months for seed-eating birds exposed to extreme fire regimes. We tested these relationships by monitoring finch condition over the following years, as AWC implemented fire management to produce the 'benign

  14. Assessment of Aboveground Woody Biomass Dynamics Using Terrestrial Laser Scanner and L-Band ALOS PALSAR Data in South African Savanna

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    Victor Onyango Odipo

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available The use of optical remote sensing data for savanna vegetation structure mapping is hindered by sparse and heterogeneous distribution of vegetation canopy, leading to near-similar spectral signatures among lifeforms. An additional challenge to optical sensors is the high cloud cover and unpredictable weather conditions. Longwave microwave data, with its low sensitivity to clouds addresses some of these problems, but many space borne studies are still limited by low quality structural reference data. Terrestrial laser scanning (TLS derived canopy cover and height metrics can improve aboveground biomass (AGB prediction at both plot and landscape level. To date, few studies have explored the strength of TLS for vegetation structural mapping, and particularly few focusing on savannas. In this study, we evaluate the potential of high resolution TLS-derived canopy cover and height metrics to estimate plot-level aboveground biomass, and to extrapolate to a landscape-wide biomass estimation using multi-temporal L-band Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR within a 9 km2 area savanna in Kruger National Park (KNP. We inventoried 42 field plots in the wet season and computed AGB for each plot using site-specific allometry. Canopy cover, canopy height, and their product were regressed with plot-level AGB over the TLS-footprint, while SAR backscatter was used to model dry season biomass for the years 2007, 2008, 2009, and 2010 for the study area. The results from model validation showed a significant linear relationship between TLS-derived predictors with field biomass, p < 0.05 and adjusted R2 ranging between 0.56 for SAR to 0.93 for the TLS-derived canopy cover and height. Log-transformed AGB yielded lower errors with TLS metrics compared with non-transformed AGB. An assessment of the backscatter based on root mean square error (RMSE showed better AGB prediction with cross-polarized (RMSE = 6.6 t/ha as opposed to co-polarized data (RMSE = 6.7 t/ha, attributed to

  15. A Landscape-Scale, Applied Fire Management Experiment Promotes Recovery of a Population of the Threatened Gouldian Finch, Erythrura gouldiae, in Australia's Tropical Savannas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Legge, Sarah; Garnett, Stephen; Maute, Kim; Heathcote, Joanne; Murphy, Steve; Woinarski, John C Z; Astheimer, Lee

    2015-01-01

    Fire is an integral part of savanna ecology and changes in fire patterns are linked to biodiversity loss in savannas worldwide. In Australia, changed fire regimes are implicated in the contemporary declines of small mammals, riparian species, obligate-seeding plants and grass seed-eating birds. Translating this knowledge into management to recover threatened species has proved elusive. We report here on a landscape-scale experiment carried out by the Australian Wildlife Conservancy (AWC) on Mornington Wildlife Sanctuary in northwest Australia. The experiment was designed to understand the response of a key savanna bird guild to fire, and to use that information to manage fire with the aim of recovering a threatened species population. We compared condition indices among three seed-eating bird species--one endangered (Gouldian finch) and two non-threatened (long-tailed finch and double-barred finch)--from two large areas (> 2,830 km2) with initial contrasting fire regimes ('extreme': frequent, extensive, intense fire; versus 'benign': less frequent, smaller, lower intensity fires). Populations of all three species living with the extreme fire regime had condition indices that differed from their counterparts living with the benign fire regime, including higher haematocrit levels in some seasons (suggesting higher levels of activity required to find food), different seasonal haematocrit profiles, higher fat scores in the early wet season (suggesting greater food uncertainty), and then lower muscle scores later in the wet season (suggesting prolonged food deprivation). Gouldian finches also showed seasonally increasing stress hormone concentrations with the extreme fire regime. Cumulatively, these patterns indicated greater nutritional stress over many months for seed-eating birds exposed to extreme fire regimes. We tested these relationships by monitoring finch condition over the following years, as AWC implemented fire management to produce the 'benign' fire regime

  16. Projections of 21st Century African Climate: Implications for African Savanna Fire Dynamics, Human Health and Food Security

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adegoke, J. O.

    2015-12-01

    Fire is a key agent of change in the African savannas, which are shaped through the complex interactions between trees, C4 grasses, rainfall, temperature, CO2 and fire. These fires and their emitted smoke can have numerous direct and indirect effects on the environment, water resources, air quality, and climate. For instance, veld fires in southern Africa cause large financial losses to agriculture, livestock production and forestry on an annual basis. This study contributes to our understanding of the implications of projected surface temperature evolution in Africa for fire risk, human health and agriculture over the coming decades. We use an ensemble of high-resolution regional climate model simulations of African climate for the 21st century. Regional dowscalings and recent global circulation model projections obtained for Africa indicate that African temperatures are likely to rise at 1.5 times the global rate of temperature increase in the tropics, and at almost twice the global rate of increase in the subtropics. Warming is projected to occur during the 21st century, with increases of 4-6 °C over the subtropics and 3-5 °C over the tropics plausible by the end of the century relative to present-day climate under the A2 (low mitigation) scenario. We explore the significance of the projected warming by documenting increases in projected high fire danger days and heat-wave days. General drying is projected across the continent, even for areas (e.g. tropical Africa) where an increase in rainfall is plausible. This is due to the drastic increases in temperature that are projected, which leads to drier soils (through enhanced evaporation) despite the rainfall increases. This will likely impact negatively on crop yield, particularly on the maize crop that is of crucial importance in terms of African food security.

  17. Group dynamics of zebra and wildebeest in a woodland savanna: effects of predation risk and habitat density.

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    Maria Thaker

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Group dynamics of gregarious ungulates in the grasslands of the African savanna have been well studied, but the trade-offs that affect grouping of these ungulates in woodland habitats or dense vegetation are less well understood. We examined the landscape-level distribution of groups of blue wildebeest, Connochaetes taurinus, and Burchell's zebra, Equus burchelli, in a predominantly woodland area (Karongwe Game Reserve, South Africa; KGR to test the hypothesis that group dynamics are a function of minimizing predation risk from their primary predator, lion, Panthera leo. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Using generalized linear models, we examined the relative importance of habitat type (differing in vegetation density, probability of encountering lion (based on utilization distribution of all individual lions in the reserve, and season in predicting group size and composition. We found that only in open scrub habitat, group size for both ungulate species increased with the probability of encountering lion. Group composition differed between the two species and was driven by habitat selection as well as predation risk. For both species, composition of groups was, however, dominated by males in open scrub habitats, irrespective of the probability of encountering lion. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Distribution patterns of wildebeest and zebra groups at the landscape level directly support the theoretical and empirical evidence from a range of taxa predicting that grouping is favored in open habitats and when predation risk is high. Group composition reflected species-specific social, physiological and foraging constraints, as well as the importance of predation risk. Avoidance of high resource open scrub habitat by females can lead to loss of foraging opportunities, which can be particularly costly in areas such as KGR, where this resource is limited. Thus, landscape-level grouping dynamics are species specific and particular to the

  18. Seasonal diet and prey preference of the African lion in a waterhole-driven semi-arid savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davidson, Zeke; Valeix, Marion; Van Kesteren, Freya; Loveridge, Andrew J; Hunt, Jane E; Murindagomo, Felix; Macdonald, David W

    2013-01-01

    Large carnivores inhabiting ecosystems with heterogeneously distributed environmental resources with strong seasonal variations frequently employ opportunistic foraging strategies, often typified by seasonal switches in diet. In semi-arid ecosystems, herbivore distribution is generally more homogeneous in the wet season, when surface water is abundant, than in the dry season when only permanent sources remain. Here, we investigate the seasonal contribution of the different herbivore species, prey preference and distribution of kills (i.e. feeding locations) of African lions in Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe, a semi-arid African savanna structured by artificial waterholes. We used data from 245 kills and 74 faecal samples. Buffalo consistently emerged as the most frequently utilised prey in all seasons by both male (56%) and female (33%) lions, contributing the most to lion dietary biomass. Jacobs' index also revealed that buffalo was the most intensively selected species throughout the year. For female lions, kudu and to a lesser extent the group "medium Bovidae" are the most important secondary prey. This study revealed seasonal patterns in secondary prey consumption by female lions partly based on prey ecology with browsers, such as giraffe and kudu, mainly consumed in the early dry season, and grazers, such as zebra and suids, contributing more to female diet in the late dry season. Further, it revealed the opportunistic hunting behaviour of lions for prey as diverse as elephants and mice, with elephants taken mostly as juveniles at the end of the dry season during droughts. Jacobs' index finally revealed a very strong preference for kills within 2 km from a waterhole for all prey species, except small antelopes, in all seasons. This suggested that surface-water resources form passive traps and contribute to the structuring of lion foraging behaviour.

  19. Efficiency of Individual Tree Detection Approaches Based on Light-Weight and Low-Cost UAS Imagery in Australian Savannas

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    Grigorijs Goldbergs

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The reliability of airborne light detection and ranging (LiDAR for delineating individual trees and estimating aboveground biomass (AGB has been proven in a diverse range of ecosystems, but can be difficult and costly to commission. Point clouds derived from structure from motion (SfM matching techniques obtained from unmanned aerial systems (UAS could be a feasible low-cost alternative to airborne LiDAR scanning for canopy parameter retrieval. This study assesses the extent to which SfM three-dimensional (3D point clouds—obtained from a light-weight mini-UAS quadcopter with an inexpensive consumer action GoPro camera—can efficiently and effectively detect individual trees, measure tree heights, and provide AGB estimates in Australian tropical savannas. Two well-established canopy maxima and watershed segmentation tree detection algorithms were tested on canopy height models (CHM derived from SfM imagery. The influence of CHM spatial resolution on tree detection accuracy was analysed, and the results were validated against existing high-resolution airborne LiDAR data. We found that the canopy maxima and watershed segmentation routines produced similar tree detection rates (~70% for dominant and co-dominant trees, but yielded low detection rates (<35% for suppressed and small trees due to poor representativeness in point clouds and overstory occlusion. Although airborne LiDAR provides higher tree detection rates and more accurate estimates of tree heights, we found SfM image matching to be an adequate low-cost alternative for the detection of dominant and co-dominant tree stands.

  20. Seasonal diet and prey preference of the African lion in a waterhole-driven semi-arid savanna.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zeke Davidson

    Full Text Available Large carnivores inhabiting ecosystems with heterogeneously distributed environmental resources with strong seasonal variations frequently employ opportunistic foraging strategies, often typified by seasonal switches in diet. In semi-arid ecosystems, herbivore distribution is generally more homogeneous in the wet season, when surface water is abundant, than in the dry season when only permanent sources remain. Here, we investigate the seasonal contribution of the different herbivore species, prey preference and distribution of kills (i.e. feeding locations of African lions in Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe, a semi-arid African savanna structured by artificial waterholes. We used data from 245 kills and 74 faecal samples. Buffalo consistently emerged as the most frequently utilised prey in all seasons by both male (56% and female (33% lions, contributing the most to lion dietary biomass. Jacobs' index also revealed that buffalo was the most intensively selected species throughout the year. For female lions, kudu and to a lesser extent the group "medium Bovidae" are the most important secondary prey. This study revealed seasonal patterns in secondary prey consumption by female lions partly based on prey ecology with browsers, such as giraffe and kudu, mainly consumed in the early dry season, and grazers, such as zebra and suids, contributing more to female diet in the late dry season. Further, it revealed the opportunistic hunting behaviour of lions for prey as diverse as elephants and mice, with elephants taken mostly as juveniles at the end of the dry season during droughts. Jacobs' index finally revealed a very strong preference for kills within 2 km from a waterhole for all prey species, except small antelopes, in all seasons. This suggested that surface-water resources form passive traps and contribute to the structuring of lion foraging behaviour.

  1. Termites create spatial structure and govern ecosystem function by affecting N2 fixation in an East African savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fox-Dobbs, Kena; Doak, Daniel F; Brody, Alison K; Palmer, Todd M

    2010-05-01

    The mechanisms by which even the clearest of keystone or dominant species exert community-wide effects are only partially understood in most ecosystems. This is especially true when a species or guild influences community-wide interactions via changes in the abiotic landscape. Using stable isotope analyses, we show that subterranean termites in an East African savanna strongly influence a key ecosystem process: atmospheric nitrogen fixation by a monodominant tree species and its bacterial symbionts. Specifically, we applied the 15N natural abundance method in combination with other biogeochemical analyses to assess levels of nitrogen fixation by Acacia drepanolobium and its effects on co-occurring grasses and forbs in areas near and far from mounds and where ungulates were or were not excluded. We find that termites exert far stronger effects than do herbivores on nitrogen fixation. The percentage of nitrogen derived from fixation in Acacia drepanolobium trees is higher (55-80%) away from mounds vs. near mounds (40-50%). Mound soils have higher levels of plant available nitrogen, and Acacia drepanolobium may preferentially utilize soil-based nitrogen sources in lieu of fixed nitrogen when these sources are readily available near termite mounds. At the scale of the landscape, our models predict that termite/soil derived nitrogen sources influence >50% of the Acacia drepanolobium trees in our system. Further, the spatial extent of these effects combine with the spacing of termite mounds to create highly regular patterning in nitrogen fixation rates, resulting in marked habitat heterogeneity in an otherwise uniform landscape. In summary, we show that termite-associated effects on nitrogen processes are not only stronger than those of more apparent large herbivores in the same system, but also occur in a highly regular spatial pattern, potentially adding to their importance as drivers of community and ecosystem structure.

  2. Resource-use efficiency explains grassy weed invasion in a low-resource savanna in north Australia

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    Emilie eEns

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Comparative studies of plant resource use and ecophysiological traits of invasive and native resident plant species can elucidate mechanisms of invasion success and ecosystem impacts. In the seasonal tropics of north Australia, the alien C4 perennial grass Andropogon gayanus (gamba grass has transformed diverse, mixed tree-grass savanna ecosystems into dense monocultures. To better understand the mechanisms of invasion, we compared resource acquisition and usage efficiency using leaf-scale ecophysiological and stand-scale growth traits of A. gayanus with a co-habiting native C4 perennial grass Alloteropsis semialata. Under wet season conditions, A. gayanus had higher rates of stomatal conductance, assimilation and water use, plus a longer daily assimilation period than the native species A. semialata. Growing season length was also ~2 months longer for the invader. Wet season measures of leaf scale water use efficiency (WUE and light use efficiency (LUE did not differ between the two species, although photosynthetic nitrogen use efficiency (PNUE was significantly higher in A. gayanus. By May (dry season the drought avoiding native species A. semialata had senesced. In contrast, rates of A. gayanus gas exchange was maintained into the dry season, albeit at lower rates that the wet season, but at higher WUE and PNUE, evidence of significant physiological plasticity. High PNUE and leaf 15N isotope values suggested that A. gayanus was also capable of preferential uptake of soil ammonium, with utilisation occurring into the dry season. High PNUE and fire tolerance in an N-limited and highly flammable ecosystem confers a significant competitive advantage over native grass species and a broader niche width. As a result A. gayanus is rapidly spreading across north Australia with significant consequences for biodiversity and carbon and retention.

  3. Plant species as a therapeutic resource in areas of the savanna in the state of Pernambuco, Northeast Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saraiva, Manuele Eufrasio; Ulisses, Ana Vartan Ribeiro de Alencar; Ribeiro, Daiany Alves; de Oliveira, Liana Geraldo Souza; de Macêdo, Delmácia Gonçalves; de Sousa, Francisca de Fátima Silva; de Menezes, Irwin Rose Alencar; Sampaio, Everardo Valadares de Sá Barretto; Souza, Marta Maria de Almeida

    2015-08-02

    Ethnobotanical studies have contributed significantly in research of plants with therapeutic potential. The aim of the present study was to learn about the use of native medicinal plants cited by the traditional population in "cerradão" (savanna woodland) areas in Northeast Brazil, providing data on therapeutic indications of the species used and their versatility. Semi-structured interviews were conducted on the basis of a standardized questionnaire designed for key informants selected using the "snowball" technique. The selection of plants species with therapeutic potential was performed on the basis of the relative importance (RI) and informant consensus fator (ICF). A total of 78 species were indicated for 87 therapeutic purposes. Of these, 11 species presented great versatility of use (RI>1), as e.g.including Copaifera langsdorffii Desf., Hybanthus calceolaria (Mart.) Plumel., Heliotropium cf. indicum L., Croton zehntneri, Croton heliotropiifolius, Myracrodruon urundeuva, Stryphnodendro rotundifolium. Medicinal uses could be generalized Pax & K. Hoffm and Hymenaea courbaril L. The therapeutic indications were grouped into 14 use 15 categories with 594 species-category combinations. The largest number of medicinal species was indicated for illnesses or undefined pain, followed by diseases associated with respiratory, digestive and genitourinaryof body systems. The factor informant consensus highlighted the agreement in the use of plants and showed that the, of which Diseases of the Nervous System and, Diseases of the Circulatory System had the greatest agreement 1.0 and 0.87 repectively, Disorders of the Visual Sensory System - Eyes and Respiratory System Disorder showed the highest agreement of use. Most of the species cited by the key informants are well known scientifically, but it is interesting that some have been studied little or not all with regard to confirming their purported medicinal properties and can contribute substantially to pharmacological

  4. Knowledge and extractivism of Stryphnodendron rotundifolium Mart. in a local community of the Brazilian Savanna, Northeastern Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feitosa, Ivanilda Soares; Albuquerque, Ulysses Paulino; Monteiro, Júlio Marcelino

    2014-09-09

    This study aims to understand how the stem bark of Stryphnodendron rotundifolium Mart. is used by a rural community in the savanna of Northeastern Brazil, associated with a preliminary assessment involving plant population structure and extractivism in the main sites of collection. A population structure study and analysis of bark extractivism was conducted in two sites: one within the forest and another at its edge. We had the intention of testing whether there are differences between these sites; since the local extractive practice is prohibited, expecting more intense extraction in the forest interior than its edge by the local fiscalization. We interviewed 120 informants who reported knowing and using the species, and also the places of extractivism. We also calculated quantitative measures of local knowledge, and the influence of gender and age on the knowledge about this species. Knowledge of the uses was evenly distributed between men and women. A total of 28 specimens were recorded at Site 1, whereas 23 were identified at Site 2, with the specimens at both sites distributed in 4-diameter classes with 4-cm intervals. Nine of the specimens found in Site 1 (32.14%) showed some sign of extraction. No specimen from Site 2 showed signs of extraction. In Site 1, the total area of stem bark removed was 43,468 cm2, and the total area of stem bark available was 33,200 cm2. In Site 2, only the available stem-bark area of 44,666 cm2 was identified because no specimens were harvested. There is no difference in knowledge of this species regarding the gender and age. Stryphnodendron rotundifolium is a key resource for the studied community. A large proportion of bark collected from the first diameter size class may affect the growth of these individuals and may influence the recruitment process. Perhaps, this effect may explain the absence of individuals in some size classes.

  5. Allelopathic exudates of cogongrass (Imperata cylindrica): implications for the performance of native pine savanna plant species in the southeastern US.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hagan, Donald L; Jose, Shibu; Lin, Chung-Ho

    2013-02-01

    We conducted a greenhouse study to assess the effects of cogongrass (Imperata cylindrica) rhizochemicals on a suite of plants native to southeastern US pine savanna ecosystems. Our results indicated a possible allelopathic effect, although it varied by species. A ruderal grass (Andropogon arctatus) and ericaceous shrub (Lyonia ferruginea) were unaffected by irrigation with cogongrass soil "leachate" (relative to leachate from mixed native species), while a mid-successional grass (Aristida stricta Michx. var. beyrichiana) and tree (Pinus elliottii) were negatively affected. For A. stricta, we observed a 35.7 % reduction in aboveground biomass, a 21.9 % reduction in total root length, a 24.6 % reduction in specific root length and a 23.5 % reduction in total mycorrhizal root length, relative to the native leachate treatment. For P. elliottii, there was a 19.5 % reduction in percent mycorrhizal colonization and a 20.1 % reduction in total mycorrhizal root length. Comparisons with a DI water control in year two support the possibility that the treatment effects were due to the negative effects of cogongrass leachate, rather than a facilitative effect from the mixed natives. Chemical analyses identified 12 putative allelopathic compounds (mostly phenolics) in cogongrass leachate. The concentrations of most compounds were significantly lower, if they were present at all, in the native leachate. One compound was an alkaloid with a speculated structure of hexadecahydro-1-azachrysen-8-yl ester (C23H33NO4). This compound was not found in the native leachate. We hypothesize that the observed treatment effects may be attributable, at least partially, to these qualitative and quantitative differences in leachate chemistry.

  6. Habitat Heterogeneity Variably Influences Habitat Selection by Wild Herbivores in a Semi-Arid Tropical Savanna Ecosystem.

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    Victor K Muposhi

    Full Text Available An understanding of the habitat selection patterns by wild herbivores is critical for adaptive management, particularly towards ecosystem management and wildlife conservation in semi arid savanna ecosystems. We tested the following predictions: (i surface water availability, habitat quality and human presence have a strong influence on the spatial distribution of wild herbivores in the dry season, (ii habitat suitability for large herbivores would be higher compared to medium-sized herbivores in the dry season, and (iii spatial extent of suitable habitats for wild herbivores will be different between years, i.e., 2006 and 2010, in Matetsi Safari Area, Zimbabwe. MaxEnt modeling was done to determine the habitat suitability of large herbivores and medium-sized herbivores. MaxEnt modeling of habitat suitability for large herbivores using the environmental variables was successful for the selected species in 2006 and 2010, except for elephant (Loxodonta africana for the year 2010. Overall, large herbivores probability of occurrence was mostly influenced by distance from rivers. Distance from roads influenced much of the variability in the probability of occurrence of medium-sized herbivores. The overall predicted area for large and medium-sized herbivores was not different. Large herbivores may not necessarily utilize larger habitat patches over medium-sized herbivores due to the habitat homogenizing effect of water provisioning. Effect of surface water availability, proximity to riverine ecosystems and roads on habitat suitability of large and medium-sized herbivores in the dry season was highly variable thus could change from one year to another. We recommend adaptive management initiatives aimed at ensuring dynamic water supply in protected areas through temporal closure and or opening of water points to promote heterogeneity of wildlife habitats.

  7. Radiative transfer in shrub savanna sites in Niger: preliminary results from HAPEX-Sahel. 2. Photosynthetically active radiation interception of the woody layer

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bégué, A.; Hanan, N.P.; Prince, S.D.

    1994-01-01

    Interception by the woody layer of photosynthetically active radiation (PAR) was measured and calculated for two Guiera senegalensis J.F. Gmel, shrub savannas in Ouallam, Western Niger, in 1991 as part of the HAPEX-Sahel experiment. Two different scales were considered. At the plant scale, PAR interception was measured throughout the day with amorphous silicon sensors, together with detailed measurements of the structure of the shrubs (size of the ‘envelope’ of the shrub, area index, and angular distribution of the leaves and the branches). These data permitted us to develop and validate a simple radiative transfer model in which the shrubs are represented by porous cylinders; the total transmissivity (or porosity) of the shrubs estimated by the model was approximately 0.4. It indicates that semi-arid shrubs cannot be considered opaque objects and that the fraction of ground covered with plants is a poor indicator of the PAR interception efficiency of the canopy. The model was also applied at a landscape scale to calculate the daily PAR interception of two shrub savanna sites. This value is needed to model primary production in conjunction with remotely sensed and production data acquired simultaneously on the sites. (author)

  8. Oil palm vegetative development under savanna and forest ecossystems of Roraima, Brazil. = Desenvolvimento vegetativo da palma de óleo em ecossistemas de savana e floresta de Roraima.

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    Francisco Clemilto da Silva Maciel

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this work was to assess field vegetative development of oil palm comercial hibrids up to age of 18 months, in two ecosystems of Roraima. Two essays are being conducted, one of them in area of savanna and the other in deforested area with assessment of commercial hybrids BRS 2528, BRS 3701 and BRS 2301, under experimental design of completely random blocks with six replicates. Monthly measurements, which began 14 months after field planting, took place concerning to number of emitted leaves, width of leaf nr.4 (cm, plant hight (cm and ground level stem diameter (cm. Individual and conjoined variance analysis were performed, considering the effects of hybrids and periods as fixed and the others as aleatory. For comparison of estimated averages of assessed characteristics, Tukey test at level of 5% probability was used. As to detect alterations relative to characteristics during the period of study, concerning each environment, regression equations were estimated, the assessed characteritic being the dependent variable and the measurement epochs being the independent variable. One may conclude that, in deforested areas, hybrids show higher vegetative development than those obtained in savanna; hybrids BRS 2528, BRS 3701 and BRS 2301 showed vegetative development equivalent in savana and hibrid BRS 2301 outstanded from the others in deforested area.

  9. Mapping Savanna Tree Species at Ecosystem Scales Using Support Vector Machine Classification and BRDF Correction on Airborne Hyperspectral and LiDAR Data

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    Gregory P. Asner

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Mapping the spatial distribution of plant species in savannas provides insight into the roles of competition, fire, herbivory, soils and climate in maintaining the biodiversity of these ecosystems. This study focuses on the challenges facing large-scale species mapping using a fusion of Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR and hyperspectral imagery. Here we build upon previous work on airborne species detection by using a two-stage support vector machine (SVM classifier to first predict species from hyperspectral data at the pixel scale. Tree crowns are segmented from the lidar imagery such that crown-level information, such as maximum tree height, can then be combined with the pixel-level species probabilities to predict the species of each tree. An overall prediction accuracy of 76% was achieved for 15 species. We also show that bidirectional reflectance distribution (BRDF effects caused by anisotropic scattering properties of savanna vegetation can result in flight line artifacts evident in species probability maps, yet these can be largely mitigated by applying a semi-empirical BRDF model to the hyperspectral data. We find that confronting these three challenges—reflectance anisotropy, integration of pixel- and crown-level data, and crown delineation over large areas—enables species mapping at ecosystem scales for monitoring biodiversity and ecosystem function.

  10. No Evidence of Habitat Loss Affecting the Orchid Bees Eulaema nigrita Lepeletier and Eufriesea auriceps Friese (Apidae: Euglossini) in the Brazilian Cerrado Savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silva, D P; De Marco, P

    2014-12-01

    Habitat loss, landscape fragmentation, and agriculture intensification constitute the main threats to bees. As the organisms responsible for almost one third of the food produced worldwide, there are growing concerns on bees' response to human-related disturbances. Among all bee groups, orchid bees (Apidae: Euglossini) compose an interesting group to test landscape-related hypotheses. In here, we tested the effect of landscape features (amount of anthropic areas and isolation) on the probability of occurrence and the abundances of both Eulaema nigrita Lepeletier and Eufriesea auriceps Friese in the Cerrado savanna. In general, we did not observe any effect of landscape features on the probability of occurrence and abundances of both species in our sampling sites. Given their potential high dispersal abilities, these bee species may be less sensitive to fragmented landscapes or even positively affected by the increase of anthropic habitats. Since we sampled many E. nigrita specimens in highly preserved Cerrado savanna areas, we believe that at least for this biome, this species may not be a good indicator of landscape disturbance.

  11. Radiative transfer in shrub savanna sites in Niger: preliminary results from HAPEX-Sahel. 1. Modelling surface reflectance using a geometric-optical approach

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Franklin, J.; Duncan, J.; Huete, A.R.; Leeuwen, W.J.D. van; Li, X.; Bégué, A.

    1994-01-01

    To use optical remote sensing to monitor land surface-climate interactions over large areas, algorithms must be developed to relate multispectral measurements to key variables controlling the exchange of matter (water, carbon dioxide) and energy between the land surface and the atmosphere. The proportion of the ground covered by vegetation and the interception of photosynthetically active radiation (PAR) by vegetation are examples of two variables related to evapotranspiration and primary production, respectively. An areal-proportion model of the multispectral reflectance of shrub savanna, composed of scattered shrubs with a grass, forb or soil understory, predicted the reflectance of two 0.5 km 2 sites as the area-weighted average of the shrub and understory or ‘background’ reflectances. Although the shaded crown and shaded background have darker reflectances, ignoring them in the area-weighted model is not serious when shrub cover is low and solar zenith angle is small. A submodel predicted the reflectance of the shrub crown as a function of the foliage reflectance and amount of plant material within the crown, and the background reflectance scattered or transmitted through canopy gaps (referred to as a soil—plant ‘spectral interaction’ term). One may be able to combine these two models to estimate both the fraction of vegetation cover and interception of PAR by green vegetation in a shrub savanna. (author)

  12. Rapid assessment and mapping of tree cover in southern African savanna woodlands using a new iPhone App and Landsat 8 imagery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fuller, D. O.

    2016-12-01

    Tree cover is a key parameter in climate modeling. It strongly influences CO2 exchanges between the land surface and atmosphere and surface energy balance. We measured percent woody canopy cover (PWCC) in the savanna woodlands of eastern Zambia over a 10-day period in May 2016 using a new iPhone App (CanopyApp) and related these field measurements to Landsat 8 (L8) Band 4 (red) imagery acquired approximately the same time. We then used parameters from the band 4 digital numbers (DNs)-PWCC linear regression to derive a new map of PWCC for the entire L8 scene. Consistent with theory and previous empirical studies, we found that the relationship between L8 band 4 DNs- PWCC was negative and linear (r2 = 0.61, p reflectance was weaker (r2 = 0.46, p shadowing effects and other spatial inhomogeneities from variable soil and background reflectance. Our PWCC map agreed qualitatively with similar percent tree-cover maps based on Landsat level 1 products and past field studies in the area conducted using a hemispherical lens. Our results also compared favorably with other remote sensing studies that have used complex multivariate approaches to estimate tree cover, which suggests that use of a single L8 band 4 is sufficient to estimate PWCC when spectral contrast exists between the grass, soil and tree layers during the austral fall period in southern African savannas.

  13. Assessment of irrigation performance: contribution to improve water management in a small catchment in the Brazilian savannas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodrigues, Lineu; Marioti, Juliana; Steenhuis, Tammo; Wallender, Wesley

    2010-05-01

    Irrigated agriculture is the major consumer of surface water in Brazil using over 70% of the total supply. Due to the growing competition for water among different sectors of the economy, sustainable water use can only be achieved by decreasing the portion of water used by the irrigated agriculture. Thus, in order to maintain yield, farmers need to irrigate more efficiently. There is little known on irrigation efficiency in Brazil. Therefore a study was carried out in the Buriti Vermelho basin to assess the irrigation performance of existing system. The experimental basin has a drainage area of 940 hectares and is located in the eastern part of the Federal District, in the Brazilian savanna region. Agriculture is the main activity. There is a dominance of red latosols. Several types of land use and crop cover are encountered in the basin. Conflicts among farmers for water are increasing. As water, in quality and quantity, is crucial to maintain the livelihood of the population in the basin, concern about risk of water lack due to climatic and land use change is in place. Once irrigation is the main water user in the basin, to increase water availability and reduce conflicts a water resource management plan has to be established. For this purpose, irrigation system performance has to be understood. The objective of this work was to assess the performance and the management of irrigation (small and big) that has been carried out by farmers in the Buriti Vermelho experimental watershed. A survey undertaken in 2007 was used to identify the irrigation systems in the basin. It was verified that irrigation is practiced by both small (area up to 6 hectare) and big farmers. Small farmers usually crop limes and vegetables and use micro-irrigation, drip, sprinkler, guns or furrow to irrigate them. Big farmers plant annual crops and use center pivot as irrigation system. In this first assessment 13 irrigation systems were evaluated: five conventional sprinklers, four drip

  14. Evaluating channel morphology in small watersheds of oak savannas Southeastern New Mexico, USA: Do seasonal prescribed burn treatments have a significant impact on sediment processes?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koestner, Karen; Neary, Daniel; Gottfried, Gerald; Tecle, Aregai

    2010-05-01

    Oak-savannas comprise over 80,000 km2 of the southwestern United States and northern Mexico. However, there is a paucity of data to assist in the management of this vast ecotype. Fire, which was once the most important natural disturbance in this system, has been excluded due to over-grazing and fire suppression practices. This has resulted in ecosystem changes and fuel accumulations. Prescribed fire is one management technique to restore natural processes within southwestern oak-savannas by reducing woody species density, increasing herbaceous plant production, and creating vegetative mosaics on the landscape. However, questions concerning the seasonality of burn treatments and the overall effects of these treatments on physical and ecological processes need to be addressed prior to broad management application. The Cascabel Watershed Study is a collaborative effort between multiple government agencies, universities, local land managers, and environmental interest groups to evaluate the impacts of warm and cool season burn treatments on an array of ecosystem processes. Established in 2000, the Cascabel Watershed study takes an "ecosystem approach" to watershed research by examining an array of physical and biological components, including geomorphologic, climatologic, hydrologic, and biologic (flora and fauna) data to determine ecosystem response to prescribed fire. The 182.6 ha study area is located in the eastern Peloncillo Mountains, New Mexico at about the 1,640 m elevation. It consists of 12 small watersheds dominated by an oak (Quercus spp.) overstory and bunch-grass (Bouteloua spp.), savanna component. The parent material is fine-grained Tertiary rhyolite that is part of an extensive lava field that was formed about 25 to 27 M ybp. A US Forest Service soil survey in the area classified 45% of the soils as Typic Haplustolls, coarse-loamy, mixed, mesic, 25% as Typic Haplustalfs, and 15% rock outcrops. Here, we evaluate within-channel processes to establish

  15. Influence of Fire Mosaics, Habitat Characteristics and Cattle Disturbance on Mammals in Fire-Prone Savanna Landscapes of the Northern Kimberley.

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    Ian J Radford

    Full Text Available Patch mosaic burning, in which fire is used to produce a mosaic of habitat patches representative of a range of fire histories ('pyrodiversity', has been widely advocated to promote greater biodiversity. However, the details of desired fire mosaics for prescribed burning programs are often unspecified. Threatened small to medium-sized mammals (35 g to 5.5 kg in the fire-prone tropical savannas of Australia appear to be particularly fire-sensitive. Consequently, a clear understanding of which properties of fire mosaics are most instrumental in influencing savanna mammal populations is critical. Here we use mammal capture data, remotely sensed fire information (i.e. time since last fire, fire frequency, frequency of late dry season fires, diversity of post-fire ages in 3 km radius, and spatial extent of recently burnt, intermediate and long unburnt habitat and structural habitat attributes (including an index of cattle disturbance to examine which characteristics of fire mosaics most influence mammals in the north-west Kimberley. We used general linear models to examine the relationship between fire mosaic and habitat attributes on total mammal abundance and richness, and the abundance of the most commonly detected species. Strong negative associations of mammal abundance and richness with frequency of late dry season fires, the spatial extent of recently burnt habitat (post-fire age <1 year within 3 km radius and level of cattle disturbance were observed. Shrub cover was positively related to both mammal abundance and richness, and availability of rock crevices, ground vegetation cover and spatial extent of ≥4 years unburnt habitat were all positively associated with at least some of the mammal species modelled. We found little support for diversity of post-fire age classes in the models. Our results indicate that both a high frequency of intense late dry season fires and extensive, recently burnt vegetation are likely to be detrimental to

  16. Multiple remote sensing data sources to assess spatio-temporal patterns of fire incidence over Campos Amazônicos Savanna Vegetation Enclave (Brazilian Amazon).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alves, Daniel Borini; Pérez-Cabello, Fernando

    2017-12-01

    Fire activity plays an important role in the past, present and future of Earth system behavior. Monitoring and assessing spatial and temporal fire dynamics have a fundamental relevance in the understanding of ecological processes and the human impacts on different landscapes and multiple spatial scales. This work analyzes the spatio-temporal distribution of burned areas in one of the biggest savanna vegetation enclaves in the southern Brazilian Amazon, from 2000 to 2016, deriving information from multiple remote sensing data sources (Landsat and MODIS surface reflectance, TRMM pluviometry and Vegetation Continuous Field tree cover layers). A fire scars database with 30 m spatial resolution was generated using a Landsat time series. MODIS daily surface reflectance was used for accurate dating of the fire scars. TRMM pluviometry data were analyzed to dynamically establish time limits of the yearly dry season and burning periods. Burned area extent, frequency and recurrence were quantified comparing the results annually/seasonally. Additionally, Vegetation Continuous Field tree cover layers were used to analyze fire incidence over different types of tree cover domains. In the last seventeen years, 1.03millionha were burned within the study area, distributed across 1432 fire occurrences, highlighting 2005, 2010 and 2014 as the most affected years. Middle dry season fires represent 86.21% of the total burned areas and 32.05% of fire occurrences, affecting larger amount of higher density tree surfaces than other burning periods. The results provide new insights into the analysis of burned areas of the neotropical savannas, spatially and statistically reinforcing important aspects linked to the seasonality patterns of fire incidence in this landscape. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. Stable oxygen isotope and flux partitioning demonstrates understory of an oak savanna contributes up to half of ecosystem carbon and water exchange

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    Maren eDubbert

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Semi-arid ecosystems contribute about 40% to global net primary production (GPP even though water is a major factor limiting carbon uptake. Evapotranspiration (ET accounts for up to 95% of the water loss and in addition, vegetation can also mitigate drought effects by altering soil water distribution. Hence, partitioning of carbon and water fluxes between the soil and vegetation components is crucial to gain mechanistic understanding of vegetation effects on carbon and water cycling. However, the possible impact of herbaceous vegetation in savanna type ecosystems is often overlooked. Therefore, we aimed at quantifying understory vegetation effects on the water balance and productivity of a Mediterranean oak savanna. ET and net ecosystem CO2 exchange (NEE were partitioned based on flux and stable oxygen isotope measurements and also rain infiltration was estimated.The understory vegetation contributed importantly to total ecosystem ET and GPP with a maximum of 43% and 51%, respectively. It reached water-use efficiencies (WUE; ratio of carbon gain by water loss similar to cork-oak trees. The understory vegetation inhibited soil evaporation (E and, although E was large during wet periods, it did not diminish WUE during water-limited times. The understory strongly increased soil water infiltration, specifically following major rain events. At the same time, the understory itself was vulnerable to drought, which led to an earlier senescence of the understory growing under trees as compared to open areas, due to competition for water. Thus, beneficial understory effects are dominant and contribute to the resilience of this ecosystem. At the same time the vulnerability of the understory to drought suggests that future climate change scenarios for the Mediterranean basin threaten understory development. This in turn will very likely diminish beneficial understory effects like infiltration and ground water recharge and therefore ecosystem resilience to

  18. Modeling Surface Energy Fluxes over a Dehesa (Oak Savanna Ecosystem Using a Thermal Based Two-Source Energy Balance Model (TSEB I

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    Ana Andreu

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Savannas are among the most variable, complex and extensive biomes on Earth, supporting livestock and rural livelihoods. These water-limited ecosystems are highly sensitive to changes in both climatic conditions, and land-use/management practices. The integration of Earth Observation (EO data into process-based land models enables monitoring ecosystems status, improving its management and conservation. In this paper, the use of the Two-Source Energy Balance (TSEB model for estimating surface energy fluxes is evaluated over a Mediterranean oak savanna (dehesa. A detailed analysis of TSEB formulation is conducted, evaluating how the vegetation architecture (multiple layers affects the roughness parameters and wind profile, as well as the reliability of EO data to estimate the ecosystem parameters. The results suggest that the assumption of a constant oak leaf area index is acceptable for the purposes of the study and the use of spectral information to derive vegetation indices is sufficiently accurate, although green fraction index may not reflect phenological conditions during the dry period. Although the hypothesis for a separate wind speed extinction coefficient for each layer is partially addressed, the results show that taking a single oak coefficient is more precise than using bulk system coefficient. The accuracy of energy flux estimations, with an adjusted Priestley–Taylor coefficient (0.9 reflecting the conservative water-use tendencies of this semiarid vegetation and a roughness length formulation which integrates tree structure and the low fractional cover, is considered adequate for monitoring the ecosystem water use (RMSD ~40 W m−2.

  19. Multilocus phylogeography of a widespread savanna-woodland-adapted rodent reveals the influence of Pleistocene geomorphology and climate change in Africa's Zambezi region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDonough, Molly M; Šumbera, Radim; Mazoch, Vladimír; Ferguson, Adam W; Phillips, Caleb D; Bryja, Josef

    2015-10-01

    Understanding historical influences of climate and physiographic barriers in shaping patterns of biodiversity remains limited for many regions of the world. For mammals of continental Africa, phylogeographic studies, particularly for West African lineages, implicate both geographic barriers and climate oscillations in shaping small mammal diversity. In contrast, studies for southern African species have revealed conflicting phylogenetic patterns for how mammalian lineages respond to both climate change and geologic events such as river formation, especially during the Pleistocene. However, these studies were often biased by limited geographic sampling or exclusively focused on large-bodied taxa. We exploited the broad southern African distribution of a savanna-woodland-adapted African rodent, Gerbilliscus leucogaster (bushveld gerbil) and generated mitochondrial, autosomal and sex chromosome data to quantify regional signatures of climatic and vicariant biogeographic phenomena. Results indicate the most recent common ancestor for all G. leucogaster lineages occurred during the early Pleistocene. We documented six divergent mitochondrial lineages that diverged ~0.270-0.100 mya, each of which was geographically isolated during periods characterized by alterations to the course of the Zambezi River and its tributaries as well as regional 'megadroughts'. Results demonstrate the presence of a widespread lineage exhibiting demographic expansion ~0.065-0.035 mya, a time that coincides with savanna-woodland expansion across southern Africa. A multilocus autosomal perspective revealed the influence of the Kafue River as a current barrier to gene flow and regions of secondary contact among divergent mitochondrial lineages. Our results demonstrate the importance of both climatic fluctuations and physiographic vicariance in shaping the distribution of southern African biodiversity. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  20. Fire-induced albedo change and surface radiative forcing in sub-Saharan Africa savanna ecosystems: Implications for the energy balance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dintwe, Kebonye; Okin, Gregory S.; Xue, Yongkang

    2017-06-01

    Surface albedo is a critical parameter that controls surface energy balance. In dryland ecosystems, fires play a significant role in decreasing surface albedo, resulting in positive radiative forcing. Here we investigate the long-term effect of fire on surface albedo. We devised a method to calculate short-, medium-, and long-term effect of fire-induced radiative forcing and their relative effects on energy balance. We used Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) data in our analysis, covering different vegetation classes in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). Our analysis indicated that mean short-term fire-induced albedo change in SSA was -0.022, -0.035, and -0.041 for savannas, shrubland, and grasslands, respectively. At regional scale, mean fire-induced albedo change in savannas was -0.018 and -0.024 for northern sub-Saharan of Africa and the southern hemisphere Africa, respectively. The short-term mean fire-induced radiative forcing in burned areas in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) was 5.41 W m-2, which contributed continental and global radiative forcings of 0.25 and 0.058 W m-2, respectively. The impact of fire in surface albedo has long-lasting effects that varies with vegetation type. The long-term energetic effects of fire-induced albedo change and associated radiative forcing were, on average, more than 19 times greater across SSA than the short-term effects, suggesting that fires exerted far more radiative forcing than previously thought. Taking into account the actual duration of fire's effect on surface albedo, we conclude that the contribution of SSA fires, globally and throughout the year, is 0.12 W m-2. These findings provide crucial information on possible impact of fire on regional climate variability.

  1. Photosynthetic responses to temperature across leaf-canopy-ecosystem scales: a 15-year study in a Californian oak-grass savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Siyan; Osuna, Jessica L; Verfaillie, Joseph; Baldocchi, Dennis D

    2017-06-01

    Ecosystem CO 2 fluxes measured with eddy-covariance techniques provide a new opportunity to retest functional responses of photosynthesis to abiotic factors at the ecosystem level, but examining the effects of one factor (e.g., temperature) on photosynthesis remains a challenge as other factors may confound under circumstances of natural experiments. In this study, we developed a data mining framework to analyze a set of ecosystem CO 2 fluxes measured from three eddy-covariance towers, plus a suite of abiotic variables (e.g., temperature, solar radiation, air, and soil moisture) measured simultaneously, in a Californian oak-grass savanna from 2000 to 2015. Natural covariations of temperature and other factors caused remarkable confounding effects in two particular conditions: lower light intensity at lower temperatures and drier air and soil at higher temperatures. But such confounding effects may cancel out. At the ecosystem level, photosynthetic responses to temperature did follow a quadratic function on average. The optimum value of photosynthesis occurred within a narrow temperature range (i.e., optimum temperature, T opt ): 20.6 ± 0.6, 18.5 ± 0.7, 19.2 ± 0.5, and 19.0 ± 0.6 °C for the oak canopy, understory grassland, entire savanna, and open grassland, respectively. This paradigm confirms that photosynthesis response to ambient temperature changes is a functional relationship consistent across leaf-canopy-ecosystem scales. Nevertheless, T opt can shift with variations in light intensity, air dryness, or soil moisture. These findings will pave the way to a direct determination of thermal optima and limits of ecosystem photosynthesis, which can in turn provide a rich resource for baseline thresholds and dynamic response functions required for predicting global carbon balance and geographic shifts of vegetative communities in response to climate change.

  2. Morphological and functional diversity of primary producers group in savannas; Diversidad morfologica y funcional del grupo de productores primarios en sabanas

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Medina, E [Instituto Venezolano de Investigaciones Cientificas (IVIC). Centro de Ecologia. Laboratorio de Ecofisiologia Vegetal, Altos de Pipe (Venezuela)

    1996-07-01

    The meaning of biological diversity for the operation and stability of natural ecosystems is matter of great theoretical and practical interest. The appearance and permanency of species in a given atmosphere indicates its capacity to compete with other species with similar habit and requirements, and to accumulate the resources that allow its reproduction. On the other hand, the coexistence of similar species in the same ecosystem allows to wonder if ever biological redundancy exists, that is to say, if several species coexist with the same function inside the ecosystem, so that the disappearance of one of them would not have biological significant consequences. A strategy to simplify the analysis of relationships between biodiversity and ecosystems operation is by grouping species with similar function, called functional groups. In this work the the primary producers functional group is analyzed, essentially superiors plants, in a savannas ecosystems. The analysis establishes that the gives the primary producers group is heterogeneous and complex, so much morphological as functionally: 1) the structural complexity and diversity forms of life in an savannas ecosystem are associated with the stratified exploitation of resources over (light) and under the floor (nourishment and water). Changes in diversity that affect the system structure will probably also affect its operations. 2 )Very similar morphological species can differ physiologically up to constitute production units with contrasting nutritional requirements. The echo-physiologic analysis of this differentiation can explain the habitat preferences that are naturally observed. 3) The long-time permanency of rare species, of low frequency, show the inability of dominant species to capture all the available resources. 4) The primary producers and the floor microorganisms have strong interactions. Changes in the community composition can generate significant changes in other community. These biotic interactions

  3. Changes in soil biological quality under legume- and maize-based farming systems in a humid savanna zone of Côte d’Ivoire

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    Tano Y.

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Studying the impact of farming systems on soil status is essential in determining the most relevant for a given agroecological zone. A trial was conducted in a West Africa humid savanna, aiming at assessing the short-term effects of farming systems on soil (0-10 cm organic carbon (SOC content and some soil microbiological properties. A randomized complete block experimental design with three replications, and the following treatments were used: Mucuna pruriens (Mucuna, Pueraria phaseoloides (Pueraria, Lablab purpureus (Lablab, a combination of these three legumes (Mixed-legumes, maize + urea (Maize-U, maize + triple super phosphate (Maize-Sp, maize + urea + triple super phosphate (Maize-USp, fertilizer-free maize continuous cropping (Maize-Tradi. Results indicated that SOC content was improved over time under legume-based systems. The relative increase was the highest with the legume association and Lablab, where SOC varied from 7.5 to 8.6 g.kg-1 (i.e. 14.7% and from 7.2 to 8.3 g.kg-1 (i.e. 15.3% respectively, between the start and the end of the trial. Besides, applying grass and maize residues as mulch on the ground, in association with inorganic fertilizers may be a way of improving SOC content in the short-term. Although legume-based systems exhibited highest values, microbial biomass carbon (MBC did not show any statistical significant differences between treatments. However, soil C mineralization and soil specific respiration were influenced by the farming systems, with higher mean values under legume-based systems (42 ± 7.6 mg C-CO2.g-1 Corg and 0.4 mg C-CO2.g-1 biomass C, respectively, compared to maize continuous cropping systems (33.1 ± 1.6 mg C-CO2.g-1 Corg and 0.3 mg C-CO2.g-1 biomass C, respectively. Thus, these parameters can be used as sensitive indicators of the early changes in soil organic matter quality. The integration of legumes cover crops in farming systems may contribute to improve soil quality that would lead to

  4. RECOVER - An Automated Burned Area Emergency Response Decision Support System for Post-fire Rehabilitation Management of Savanna Ecosystems in the Western US

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weber, K.; Schnase, J. L.; Carroll, M.; Brown, M. E.; Gill, R.; Haskett, G.; Gardner, T.

    2013-12-01

    In partnership with the Department of Interior's Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the Idaho Department of Lands (IDL), we are building and evaluating the RECOVER decision support system. RECOVER - which stands for Rehabilitation Capability Convergence for Ecosystem Recovery - is an automatically deployable, context-aware decision support system for savanna wildfires that brings together in a single application the information necessary for post-fire rehabilitation decision-making and long-term ecosystem monitoring. RECOVER uses state-of-the-art cloud-based data management technologies to improve performance, reduce cost, and provide site-specific flexibility for each fire. The RECOVER Server uses Integrated Rule-Oriented Data System (iRODS) data grid technology deployed in the Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2). The RECOVER Client is an Adobe Flex web map application that is able to provide a suite of convenient GIS analytical capabilities. In a typical use scenario, the RECOVER Server is provided a wildfire name and geospatial extent. The Server then automatically gathers Earth observational data and other relevant products from various geographically distributed data sources. The Server creates a database in the cloud where all relevant information about the wildfire is stored. This information is made available to the RECOVER Client and ultimately to fire managers through their choice of web browser. The Server refreshes the data throughout the burn and subsequent recovery period (3-5 years) with each refresh requiring two minutes to complete. Since remediation plans must be completed within 14 days of a fire's containment, RECOVER has the potential to significantly improve the decision-making process. RECOVER adds an important new dimension to post-fire decision-making by focusing on ecosystem rehabilitation in semiarid savannas. A novel aspect of RECOVER's approach involves the use of soil moisture estimates, which are an important but difficult

  5. Evaluation of hedgerow trees in alley cropping for phosphorus use efficiency and N{sub 2} fixation in low P soils in moist savanna in Nigeria

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sanginga, N [International Inst. of Tropical Agriculture, Ibadan (Nigeria); Danso, S K.A. [Joint FAO/IAEA Div. of Nuclear Techniques in Food and Agriculture, Vienna (Austria). Soil Fertility and Crop Production Section; Zapata, F [FAO/IAEA Agriculture and Biotechnology Lab., Seibersdorf (Austria). Soils Science Unit; Bowen, G D [Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization, Glen Osmond (Australia). Div. of Soils

    1996-07-01

    Soils low in P and N are common in the moist savanna climatic zones and consequently growth of hedgerow trees in alley cropping systems might require addition of N and P fertilizers. This is difficult for small scale farmers who have limited access to fertilizers and therefore depend only on limited input cropping systems. Exploiting genetic differences in P use efficiency and using hedgerow trees selected for high N{sub 2} fixation ability can improve tree establishment and growth on N and P-poor soils, restore soil fertility and preserve soil from degradation. Field experiments carried out at Fashola (moist savanna) have shown that large differences in growth and P use efficiency occurred between N{sub 2} fixing trees such as Gliricidia sepium, and non N{sub 2}-fixing trees such as Senna siamea and Senna spectabilis. Provenances or isoline differences in P use efficiency also occurred within species and was also influenced by level of P and period of growth. Differences between species and provenances in P uptake and growth were largely related to differences in physiological P-use efficiency (PPUE), root length and VAM infection rate, especially at low P. In general, nodulation was improved by P application, but varied among provenances. Gliricidia Sepium fixed about 61% of its N from atmospheric N{sub 2} in the pot experiment and 40% in the field. The percentage of N fixed was not affected by rate of P application. Differences in P and N accumulation and use efficiency were also influenced by management practices such as pruning. The distribution of total P followed the same trend as that of dry matter yield, while no significant correlations were found between partitioning of dry matter and total N. Uncut and cut G. Sepium derived 35 and 54% respectively of their N from atmospheric N{sub 2}. About 54% of the fixed N{sub 2} was partitioned to shoots and roots and this was not proportional to the size of these organs relative the whole plant. 17refs,2figs,2tabs.

  6. Gaseous Nitrogen Losses from Tropical Savanna Soils of Northern Australia: Dynamics, Controls and Magnitude of N2O, NO, and N2 emissions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Werner, C.; Hickler, T.; Hutley, L. B.; Butterbach-Bahl, K.

    2014-12-01

    Tropical savanna covers a large fraction of the global land area and thus may have a substantial effect on the global soil-atmosphere exchange of nitrogen. The pronounced seasonality of hygric conditions in this ecosystem affects strongly microbial process rates in the soil. As these microbial processes control the uptake, production, and release of nitrogen compounds, it is thought that this seasonality finally leads to strong temporal dynamics and varying magnitudes of gaseous losses to the atmosphere. However, given their areal extent and in contrast to other ecosystems, still few in-situ or laboratory studies exist that assess the soil-atmosphere exchange of nitrogen. We present laboratory incubation results from intact soil cores obtained from a natural savanna site in Northern Australia, where N2O, NO, and N2 emissions under controlled environmental conditions were investigated. Furthermore, in-situ measurements of high temporal resolution at this site recorded with automated static and dynamic chamber systems are discussed (N2O, NO). This data is then used to assess the performance of a process-based biogeochemical model (LandscapeDNDC), and the potential magnitude and dynamics of components of the site-scale nitrogen cycle where no measurements exist (biological nitrogen fixation and nitrate leaching). Our incubation results show that severe nutrient limitation of the soil only allows for very low N2O emissions (0.12 kg N ha-1 yr-1) and even a periodic N2O uptake. Annual NO emissions were estimated at 0.68 kg N ha-1 yr-1, while the release of inert nitrogen (N2) was estimated at 6.75 kg N ha-1 yr-1 (data excl. contribution by pulse emissions). We observed only minor N2O pulse emissions after watering the soil cores and initial rain events of the dry to wet season transition in-situ, but short-lived NO pulse emissions were substantial. Interestingly, some cores exhibited a very different N2O emission potential, indicating a substantial spatial variability of

  7. Seasonality of Overstory and Understory Fluxes in a Semi-Arid Oak Savanna: What can be Learned from Comparing Measured and Modeled Fluxes?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raz-Yaseef, N.; Sonnentag, O.; Kobayashi, H.; Chen, J. M.; Verfaillie, J. G.; Ma, S.; Baldocchi, D. D.

    2011-12-01

    Semi-arid climates experience large seasonal and inter-annual variability in radiation and precipitation, creating natural conditions adequate to study how year-to-year changes affect atmosphere-biosphere fluxes. Especially, savanna ecosystems, that combine tree and below-canopy components, create a unique environment in which phenology dramatically changes between seasons. We used a 10-year flux database in order to define seasonal and interannual variability of climatic inputs and fluxes, and evaluate model capability to reproduce observed variability. This is based on the perception that model capability to construct the deviation, and not the average, is important in order to correctly predict ecosystem sensitivity to climate change. Our research site is a low density and low LAI (0.8) semi-arid savanna, located at Tonzi Ranch, Northern California. In this system, trees are active during the warm season (Mar - Oct), and grasses are active during the wet season (Dec - May). Measurements of carbon and water fluxes above and below the tree canopy using eddy covariance and supplementary measurements have been made since 2001. Fluxes were simulated using bio-meteorological process-oriented ecosystem models: BEPS and 3D-CAONAK. Models were partly capable of reproducing fluxes on daily scales (R2=0.66). We then compared model outputs for different ecosystem components and seasons, and found distinct seasons with high correlations while other seasons were purely represented. Comparison was much higher for ET than for GPP. The understory was better simulated than the overstory. CANOAK overestimated spring understory fluxes, probably due to the capability to directly calculated 3D radiative transfer. BEPS underestimated spring understory fluxes, following the pre-description of grass die-off. Both models underestimated peak spring overstory fluxes. During winter tree dormant, modeled fluxes were null, but occasional high fluxes of both ET and GPP were measured following

  8. Phytochemical Analysis and Antifungal Activity of Extracts from Leaves and Fruit Residues of Brazilian Savanna Plants Aiming Its Use as Safe Fungicides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Breda, Caroline Alves; Gasperini, Alessandra Marcon; Garcia, Vera Lucia; Monteiro, Karin Maia; Bataglion, Giovana Anceski; Eberlin, Marcos Nogueira; Duarte, Marta Cristina Teixeira

    2016-08-01

    The increasing demand for safe food without preservatives or pesticides residues has encouraged several studies on natural products with antifungal activity and low toxicity. In this study, ethanolic extracts from leaves and fruit residues (peel and seeds) of three Brazilian savanna species (Acrocomia aculeata, Campomanesia adamantium and Caryocar brasiliense) were evaluated against phytopathogenic fungi. Additionally, the most active extract was chemically characterized by ESI-MS and its oral acute toxicity was evaluated. Extracts from C. brasiliense (pequi) peel and leaves were active against Alternaria alternata, Alternaria solani and Venturia pirina with minimal inhibitory concentrations between 350 and 1000 µg/mL. When incorporated in solid media, these extracts extended the lag phase of A. alternata and A. solani and reduced the growth rate of A. solani. Pequi peel extract showed better antifungal activity and their ESI-MS analysis revealed the presence of substances widely reported as antifungal such as gallic acid, quinic acid, ellagic acid, glucogalin and corilagin. The oral acute toxicity was relatively low, being considered safe for use as a potential natural fungicide.

  9. The invasive white ginger lily ( Hedichium coronarium simplifies the trait composition of an insect assemblage in the littoral zone of a Savanna reservoir

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hugo Henrique Lanzi Saulino

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT The invasive white ginger lily (Hedichium coronarium - J. Köenig, 1783 simplifies the trait composition of an insect assemblage in the littoral zone of a Savanna reservoir. Invasive plants are believed to shift the trait composition of aquatic insects dwelling in banks of lentic ecosystems. In this study, we analyzed the relationship between the presence of the invasive white ginger lily (H. coronarium and the functional trait indices of the aquatic insect assemblage in the littoral zone of a tropical reservoir. We sampled aquatic insects on the invaded and non-invaded banks of the reservoir and then analyzed the insect trait indices by estimating the Functional Dispersion (FDis, Functional Evenness (FEve and the Functional Divergence (FDiv, as well as the Community level Weight-Mean traits (CWM. Finally, we compared these indices between invaded and non-invaded banks as well as their relationship with the abiotic variables, such as dissolved oxygen, pH, depth and water temperature. The result confirmed that the invaded banks had lower values of functional indices as well as dissolved oxygen. However, this abiotic variable was found to have no effect on the functional indices. In addition, the white ginger lily bank presented higher contribution of collector-gathering to predator-piercer groups. We suggest that the invasion of white ginger lily promotes low heterogeneity habitat resulting in simplification on functional traits of aquatic insect assemblage.

  10. Observing Carbon Dioxide Fluxes on a Corn Field and a Native Savanna in the Colombian Orinoco River Region Using Eddy Covariance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morales-Rincon, L. A.; Jimenez-Pizarro, R.; Rodríguez, N.

    2016-12-01

    The Orinoco River basin is expected to become Colombia's largest farming belt in the near future. Agriculture and land use change are the most important greenhouse gas (GHG) source in Colombia and one of the most important globally. At the same time, agriculture is one of the few economic sectors that is also able to act as a sink, e.g. through soil carbon storage. Emissions are largely determined by agricultural practices, thus practice identification and C flux monitoring are of paramount importance for mitigation alternative identification. During second semester of 2015, we measured CO2 fluxes over a commercial corn filed the Colombian Orinoco River Region using enclosed-path eddy covariance. The plot behaved as a CO2 sink during crop development. We found that inter-crop activities played a key role in defining whether the area acted as a net source or sink. Quantifying C fluxes at under local soil and meteorological conditions provides new high quality scientific information, which could be incorporated into a wider evaluation of agroindustry process, e.g. through the C footprint. We will also present ongoing carbon flux measurements in a native savanna and will discuss on the possibility of extrapolating our result to wider areas using process based models.

  11. Biophysical Properties of Cultivated Pastures in the Brazilian Savanna Biome: An Analysis in the Spatial-Temporal Domains Based on Ground and Satellite Data

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    Fernando M. Araújo

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Brazil has the largest commercial beef cattle herd in the world, with cattle ranching being particularly prominent in the 200-million ha, Brazilian neotropical moist savanna biome, known as Cerrado, one of the world’s hotspots for biodiversity conservation. As decreasing productivity is a major concern affecting the Cerrado pasturelands, evaluation of pasture conditions through the determination of biophysical parameters is instrumental for more effective management practices and herd occupation strategies. Within this context, the primary goal of this study was the regional assessment of pasture biophysical properties, through the scaling of wet- and dry-season ground truth data (total biomass, green biomass, and % green cover via the combined use of high (Landsat-TM and moderate (MODIS spatial resolution vegetation index images. Based on the high correlation found between NDVI (normalized difference vegetation index and % green cover (r = 0.95, monthly MODIS-based % green cover images were derived for the 2009–2010 hydrological cycle, which were able to capture major regional patterns and differences in pasture biophysical responses, including the increasing greenness values towards the southern portions of the biome, due to both local conditions (e.g., more fertile soils and management practices. These results corroborate the development of biophysically-based landscape degradation indices, in support of improved land use governance and natural area conservation in the Cerrado.

  12. Response of three soils in the derived savanna zone of southwestern Nigeria to combined application of organic and inorganic fertilizer as affecting phosphorus fractions

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    Abigail O. Ojo

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Phosphorus inputs to the soil are primarily from the application of fertilizer P and organic resources. A ten week incubation study was carried out to determine the effects of organic and inorganic P sources on phosphorus fractions in three derived savanna soils. Poultry manure was applied at 0, 0.75g, 1.5g, 2.25g and 3g per 300g weight of soil while single superphosphate was applied at 0.0023g, 0.0046g, 0.0069g and 0.0092g per 300g of soil. Sampling was done at two weeks interval. At 0 week of the incubation study, Ekiti series had the largest amount of P fractions i.e. Fe-P, Al-P, residual P, reductant soluble P, occluded P, organic P and occluded P while Ca-P was high in Apomu series. However, increases in Fe-P, Al-P, Ca-P and organic P were observed in the three soil series evaluated and poultry manure was notably effective in reducing P occlusion. In conclusion, it was observed that irrespective of the soil series at different stages of the incubation studies, poultry manure and the combined application of poultry manure and Single superphosphate was highly effective in increasing P fractions.

  13. Medium- and large-sized mammals in a steppic savanna area of the Brazilian Pampa: survey and conservation issues of a poorly known fauna.

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    Espinosa, C C; Galiano, D; Kubiak, B B; Marinho, J R

    2016-02-01

    The wildlife of the Brazilian Pampa is threatened by large-scale habitat loss, due in particular to the expansion of soybean cultivation and the conversion of grasslands areas into extensive areas of silviculture. It is essential to study how the mammal fauna copes with the highly fragmented, human-influenced, non-protected landscape. Our study presents the results of a survey of the large- and medium-sized mammals of a typical human-influenced steppic savanna area of the Pampa biome. The survey was conducted exclusively with the use of camera traps over a period of 16 months. The relative frequencies of species in the area were evaluated. We recorded 18 species, some of them locally threatened (Tamandua tetradactyla, Alouatta caraya, Leopardus colocolo, Leopardus geoffroyi, Leopardus wiedii, Puma yagouaroundi, Mazama gouazoubira and Cuniculus paca). Several species were found to thrive in the area; however, many species were considered rare, and undoubtedly new species could be recorded if we continued the sampling. Our results contribute to the knowledge of faunal diversity in the Pampa biome and associated habitats, warn about threats and provide support for conservation measures.

  14. Medium- and large-sized mammals in a steppic savanna area of the Brazilian Pampa: survey and conservation issues of a poorly known fauna

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    C. C. Espinosa

    Full Text Available Abstract The wildlife of the Brazilian Pampa is threatened by large-scale habitat loss, due in particular to the expansion of soybean cultivation and the conversion of grasslands areas into extensive areas of silviculture. It is essential to study how the mammal fauna copes with the highly fragmented, human-influenced, non-protected landscape. Our study presents the results of a survey of the large- and medium-sized mammals of a typical human-influenced steppic savanna area of the Pampa biome. The survey was conducted exclusively with the use of camera traps over a period of 16 months. The relative frequencies of species in the area were evaluated. We recorded 18 species, some of them locally threatened (Tamandua tetradactyla, Alouatta caraya, Leopardus colocolo, Leopardus geoffroyi, Leopardus wiedii, Puma yagouaroundi, Mazama gouazoubira and Cuniculus paca. Several species were found to thrive in the area; however, many species were considered rare, and undoubtedly new species could be recorded if we continued the sampling. Our results contribute to the knowledge of faunal diversity in the Pampa biome and associated habitats, warn about threats and provide support for conservation measures.

  15. Intestinal Helminths of Wild Bonobos in Forest-Savanna Mosaic: Risk Assessment of Cross-Species Transmission with Local People in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

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    Narat, Victor; Guillot, Jacques; Pennec, Flora; Lafosse, Sophie; Grüner, Anne Charlotte; Simmen, Bruno; Bokika Ngawolo, Jean Christophe; Krief, Sabrina

    2015-12-01

    Phylogenetic and geographic proximities between humans and apes pose a risk of zoonotic transmission of pathogens. Bonobos (Pan paniscus) of the Bolobo Territory, Democratic Republic of the Congo, live in a fragmented forest-savanna mosaic setting, a marginal habitat for this species used to living in dense forests. Human activities in the forest have increased the risk of contacts between humans and bonobos. Over 21 months (September 2010-October 2013), we monitored intestinal parasites in bonobo (n = 273) and in human (n = 79) fecal samples to acquire data on bonobo parasitology and to assess the risk of intestinal helminth transmission between these hosts. Coproscopy, DNA amplification, and sequencing of stored dried feces and larvae were performed to identify helminths. Little difference was observed in intestinal parasites of bonobos in this dryer habitat compared to those living in dense forests. Although Strongylids, Enterobius sp., and Capillaria sp. were found in both humans and bonobos, the species were different between the hosts according to egg size or molecular data. Thus, no evidence of helminth transmission between humans and bonobos was found. However, because humans and this threatened species share the same habitat, it is essential to continue to monitor this risk.

  16. Analysis of the Spatial Relationship between Cattle and Wild Ungulates across Different Land-Use Systems in a Tropical Savanna Landscape

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    Geoffrey W. Kinga

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available In many African savanna landscapes, domestic and wild herbivores cooccur across different land-use systems, but the role of land-use in shaping their spatial relationship is poorly understood. We evaluated the spatial relationship between cattle and wild herbivores categorized by body sizes and feeding habits across different land-use types, namely, private ranches (PR, transitional lands (TRL, and pastoral grazing areas (PGA, in Laikipia County, Kenya. Cattle and wild herbivores spatial distribution data were obtained from Kenya’s Department of Resources Survey and Remote Sensing (DRSRS. Spatial relationships between cattle and different wild herbivore guilds were analyzed using Ripley’s bivariate K12 function. In PR, wild herbivore guilds showed significant attraction to cattle at short distances. In TRL, wild grazers, mixed feeders, megaherbivores, and medium-sized ungulates exhibited significant attraction to cattle. Additionally, repulsion was observed between cattle and browsers at short distances under this land-use system. In PGA, wild grazers, mixed feeders, and megaherbivores repelled strongly with cattle at short distances while browsers and medium-sized ungulates were significantly attracted to cattle. Cattle and wild herbivores were more randomly and independently distributed in PR than in TRL and PGA. These spatial relationships imply better coexistence between cattle and wild herbivores in PR than in TRL and PGA.

  17. The invasive white ginger lily (Hedichium coronarium simplifies the trait composition of an insect assemblage in the littoral zone of a Savanna reservoir

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    Hugo Henrique Lanzi Saulino

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The invasive white ginger lily (Hedichium coronarium – J. Köenig, 1783 simplifies the trait composition of an insect assemblage in the littoral zone of a Savanna reservoir. Invasive plants are believed to shift the trait composition of aquatic insects dwelling in banks of lentic ecosystems. In this study, we analyzed the relationship between the presence of the invasive white ginger lily (H. coronarium and the functional trait indices of the aquatic insect assemblage in the littoral zone of a tropical reservoir. We sampled aquatic insects on the invaded and non-invaded banks of the reservoir and then analyzed the insect trait indices by estimating the Functional Dispersion (FDis, Functional Evenness (FEve and the Functional Divergence (FDiv, as well as the Community level Weight-Mean traits (CWM. Finally, we compared these indices between invaded and non-invaded banks as well as their relationship with the abiotic variables, such as dissolved oxygen, pH, depth and water temperature. The result confirmed that the invaded banks had lower values of functional indices as well as dissolved oxygen. However, this abiotic variable was found to have no effect on the functional indices. In addition, the white ginger lily bank presented higher contribution of collector-gathering to predator-piercer groups. We suggest that the invasion of white ginger lily promotes low heterogeneity habitat resulting in simplification on functional traits of aquatic insect assemblage. Keywords: Biodiversity, Biological invasions, Functional diversity, Lentic system

  18. Landscape changes in a neotropical forest-savanna ecotone zone in central Brazil: The role of protected areas in the maintenance of native vegetation.

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    Garcia, Andrea S; Sawakuchi, Henrique O; Ferreira, Manuel Eduardo; Ballester, Maria Victoria R

    2017-02-01

    In the Amazon-savanna ecotone in northwest Brazil, the understudied Araguaia River Basin contains high biodiversity and seasonal wetlands. The region is representative of tropical humid-dry ecotone zones, which have experienced intense land use and land cover (LULC) conversions. Here we assessed the LULC changes for the last four decades in the central portion of the Araguaia River Basin to understand the temporal changes in the landscape composition and configuration outside and inside protected areas. We conducted these analyzes by LULC mapping and landscape metrics based on patch classes. During this period, native vegetation was reduced by 26%. Forests were the most threatened physiognomy, with significant areal reduction and fragmentation. Native vegetation cover was mainly replaced by croplands and pastures. Such replacement followed spatial and temporal trends related to the implementation of protected areas and increases in population cattle herds. The creation of most protected areas took place between 1996 and 2007, the same period during which the conversion of the landscape matrix from natural vegetation to agriculture occurred. We observed that protected areas mitigate fragmentation, but their roles differ according to their location and level of protection. Still, we argue that landscape characteristics, such as suitability for agriculture, also influence landscape conversions and should be considered when establishing protected areas. The information provided in this study can guide new research on species conservation and landscape planning, as well as improve the understanding of the impacts of landscape composition and configuration changes. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Effects of tillage and cropping systems on yield and nitrogen fixation of cowpea intercropped with maize in northen Guinea savanna zone of Ghana

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kombiok, J.M.; Safo, E.Y; Quansah, C.

    2006-01-01

    Published information is scanty on the response of crops in mixed cropping systems to the various tillage systems practised by farmers in the northern savanna zone of Ghana. A field experiment assessed the yield and nitrogen (N) fixation of cowpea (Vigna unguiculata (L.) Walp) intercropped with maize (Zea mays L.) on four different tillage systems at Nyankpala in the Northern Region of Ghana. The experiment was laid in a split-plot design with four replications. The main factor was tillage systems comprising conventional (Con), bullock plough (BP), hand hoe (HH) and zero tillage (ZT). The sub-factor was cropping systems (CRPSYT) which consisted of sole maize, sole cowpea, maize/cowpea inter-row cropping system, and bare fallow in 2000. The last named was replaced by maize/cowpea intra-row cropping system in 2001. The results showed that Con and BP, which produced over 10 cm plough depth, significantly reduced soil bulk density that favoured significant (P I). The LERs ranged from 1.43 to 1.79 in 2000, and from 1.23 to 1.24 in 2001 for Con and ZT, respectively. These indicate 33 and 52 percent mean increases in productivity of cowpea and maize, respectively, over their pure stands across the 2 years. However, grain yields of both crops from the inter- and intra-row cropping systems were not different. (au)

  20. Abundance and Night Hourly Dispersal of the Vesicating Beetles of the Genus Paederus (Coleoptera: Staphylinidae) Attracted to Fluorescent, Incandescent, and Black Light Sources in the Brazilian Savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lima, D C B; Costa, A A V; Silva, F S

    2015-01-01

    Paederus beetles are cosmopolitan medically important insects that cause dermatitis linearis to humans. In Brazil, despite the medical importance of these beetles, no studies focusing directly on the abundance and ecological features of harmful species exist. Therefore, this study aims at determining the abundance and the nocturnal hourly dispersal of Paederus species attracted to fluorescent, incandescent, and black light sources in the Brazilian savanna. Paederus species were captured from May to September for three consecutive years, between 2011 and 2013. The specimens were caught hourly, from 1800 to 0600 hours. Paederus beetles were attracted to incandescent, fluorescent, and black light lamps as light sources. A total of 959 individuals of five species were collected. The collected species were Paederus protensus Sharp (59.85%), Paederus columbinus Laporte de Castelnau (29.20%), Paederus mutans Sharp (7.09%), Paederus brasiliensis Erichson (3.34%), and Paederus ferus Erichson (0.52%). The black light was the most attractive source, and the darkest collecting point was the most representative for the number of individuals. The lowest catches were captured at full moon, and the highest catches were between 2200 and 0100 hours. Future investigations are needed to better understand the role of night temperature and soil humidity affecting the seasonal growth of Paederus beetle populations of northeastern Brazil. © The Authors 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  1. Phenological patterns of Spodoptera Guenée, 1852 (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) is more affected by ENSO than seasonal factors and host plant availability in a Brazilian Savanna

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piovesan, Mônica; Specht, Alexandre; Carneiro, Eduardo; Paula-Moraes, Silvana Vieira; Casagrande, Mirna Martins

    2018-03-01

    The identification of factors responsible for the population dynamics is fundamental for pest management, since losses can reach 18% of annual production. Besides regular seasonal environmental factors and crop managements, additional supra-annual meteorological phenomena can also affect population dynamics, although its relevance has been rarely investigated. Among crop pests, Spodoptera stands out due to its worldwide distribution, high degree of polyphagy, thus causing damages in several crops in the world. Aiming to distinguish the relevance of different factors shaping population dynamics of Spodoptera in an ecosystem constituted of dry and rainy seasons, the current study used circular statistics to identify phenological patterns and test if its population fluctuation is driven by El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) effect, seasonal meteorological parameters, and/or host plant availability. Samplings were done in an intercropping system, in the Brazilian Savanna, during the new moon cycles between July/2013 and June/2016. Species were recorded all year round, but demonstrated differently non-uniform distribution, being concentrated in different seasons of the year. Population fluctuations were mostly affected by the ENSO intensity, despite the contrasting seasonal meteorological variation or host plant availability in a 400-m radius. Studies involving the observation of supra-annual phenomena, although rare, reach similar conclusions in relation to Neotropical insect fauna. Therefore, it is paramount to have long-term sampling studies to obtain a more precise response of the pest populations towards the agroecosystem conditions.

  2. Leafcutter Ant Nests Inhibit Low-Intensity Fire Spread in the Understory of Transitional Forests at the Amazon's Forest-Savanna Boundary

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    Karine S. Carvalho

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Leaf-cutter ants (Atta spp. remove leaf litter and woody debris—potential fuels—in and around their nests and foraging trails. We conducted single and three annual experimental fires to determine the effects of this leaf-cutter ant activity on the behavior of low-intensity, slow-moving fires. In a transitional forest, where the southern Amazon forest meets the Brazilian savanna, we tested whether leaf-cutter ant nests and trails (i inhibit fire spread due to a lack of fuels, and (ii, thereby, reduce the total burned area during these experimental low-intensity fires, particularly at forest edges where leaf-cutter ant abundance was higher. Fine-medium fuel mass increased with an increase in distance from ant nest, and the mean area of bare soil was greater on nests than on the forest floor. Between 60 to 90 percent of the unburned area was within 30 m of ant nests, and burned area significantly increased with increasing distance to ant nests. In addition, the number of ant nests declined with increasing distance from the forest edge, and, with exception of the first experimental fire, burned area also increased with increasing distance from the edge. The present study provides new insight to fire ecology in Amazon environments.

  3. Competition between a Lawn-Forming Cynodon dactylon and a Tufted Grass Species Hyparrhenia hirta on a South-African Dystrophic Savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zwerts, J A; Prins, H H T; Bomhoff, D; Verhagen, I; Swart, J M; de Boer, W F

    2015-01-01

    South African savanna grasslands are often characterised by indigestible tufted grass species whereas lawn grasses are far more desirable in terms of herbivore sustenance. We aimed to investigate the role of nutrients and/or the disturbance (grazing, trampling) by herbivores on the formation of grazing lawns. We conducted a series of common garden experiments to test the effect of nutrients on interspecific competition between a typical lawn-forming grass species (Cynodon dactylon) and a species that is frequently found outside grazing lawns (Hyparrhenia hirta), and tested for the effect of herbivore disturbance in the form of trampling and clipping. We also performed a vegetation and herbivore survey to apply experimentally derived insights to field observations. Our results showed that interspecific competition was not affected by soil nutrient concentrations. C. dactylon did show much more resilience to disturbance than H. hirta, presumably due to the regenerative capacity of its rhizomes. Results from the field survey were in line with these findings, describing a correlation between herbivore pressure and C. dactylon abundance. We conclude that herbivore disturbance, and not soil nutrients, provide C. dactylon with a competitive advantage over H. hirta, due to vegetative regeneration from its rhizomes. This provides evidence for the importance of concentrated, high herbivore densities for the creation and maintenance of grazing lawns.

  4. Implementation of a Time Series Analysis for the Assessment of the Role of Climate Variability in a Post-Disturbance Savanna System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibbes, C.; Southworth, J.; Waylen, P. R.

    2013-05-01

    How do climate variability and climate change influence vegetation cover and vegetation change in savannas? A landscape scale investigation of the effect of changes in precipitation on vegetation is undertaken through the employment of a time series analysis. The multi-national study region is located within the Kavango-Zambezi region, and is delineated by the Okavango, Kwando, and Zambezi watersheds. A mean-variance time-series analysis quantifies vegetation dynamics and characterizes vegetation response to climate. The spatially explicit approach used to quantify the persistence of vegetation productivity permits the extraction of information regarding long term climate-landscape dynamics. Results show a pattern of reduced mean annual precipitation and increased precipitation variability across key social and ecological areas within the study region. Despite decreased mean annual precipitation since the mid to late 1970's vegetation trends predominantly indicate increasing biomass. The limited areas which have diminished vegetative cover relate to specific vegetation types, and are associated with declines in precipitation variability. Results indicate that in addition to short term changes in vegetation cover, long term trends in productive biomass are apparent, relate to spatial differences in precipitation variability, and potentially represent shifts vegetation composition. This work highlights the importance of time-series analyses for examining climate-vegetation linkages in a spatially explicit manner within a highly vulnerable region of the world.

  5. N2O, NO, N2 and CO2 emissions from tropical savanna and grassland of northern Australia: an incubation experiment with intact soil cores

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    C. Werner

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Strong seasonal variability of hygric and thermal soil conditions are a defining environmental feature in northern Australia. However, how such changes affect the soil–atmosphere exchange of nitrous oxide (N2O, nitric oxide (NO and dinitrogen (N2 is still not well explored. By incubating intact soil cores from four sites (three savanna, one pasture under controlled soil temperatures (ST and soil moisture (SM we investigated the release of the trace gas fluxes of N2O, NO and carbon dioxide (CO2. Furthermore, the release of N2 due to denitrification was measured using the helium gas flow soil core technique. Under dry pre-incubation conditions NO and N2O emissions were very low (−2 h−1; 2O-N m−2 h−1 or in the case of N2O, even a net soil uptake was observed. Substantial NO (max: 306.5 μg N m−2 h−1 and relatively small N2O pulse emissions (max: 5.8 ± 5.0 μg N m−2 h−1 were recorded following soil wetting, but these pulses were short lived, lasting only up to 3 days. The total atmospheric loss of nitrogen was generally dominated by N2 emissions (82.4–99.3% of total N lost, although NO emissions contributed almost 43.2% to the total atmospheric nitrogen loss at 50% SM and 30 °C ST incubation settings (the contribution of N2 at these soil conditions was only 53.2%. N2O emissions were systematically higher for 3 of 12 sample locations, which indicates substantial spatial variability at site level, but on average soils acted as weak N2O sources or even sinks. By using a conservative upscale approach we estimate total annual emissions from savanna soils to average 0.12 kg N ha−1 yr−1 (N2O, 0.68 kg N ha−1 yr−1 (NO and 6.65 kg N ha−1 yr−1 (N2. The analysis of long-term SM and ST records makes it clear that extreme soil saturation that can lead to high N2O and N2 emissions only occurs a few days per year and thus has little impact on the annual total. The potential contribution of nitrogen released due to pulse events

  6. N2O, NO, N2 and CO2 emissions from tropical savanna and grassland of northern Australia: an incubation experiment with intact soil cores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Werner, C.; Reiser, K.; Dannenmann, M.; Hutley, L. B.; Jacobeit, J.; Butterbach-Bahl, K.

    2014-11-01

    Strong seasonal variability of hygric and thermal soil conditions are a defining environmental feature in northern Australia. However, how such changes affect the soil-atmosphere exchange of nitrous oxide (N2O), nitric oxide (NO) and dinitrogen (N2) is still not well explored. By incubating intact soil cores from four sites (three savanna, one pasture) under controlled soil temperatures (ST) and soil moisture (SM) we investigated the release of the trace gas fluxes of N2O, NO and carbon dioxide (CO2). Furthermore, the release of N2 due to denitrification was measured using the helium gas flow soil core technique. Under dry pre-incubation conditions NO and N2O emissions were very low (soil uptake was observed. Substantial NO (max: 306.5 μg N m-2 h-1) and relatively small N2O pulse emissions (max: 5.8 ± 5.0 μg N m-2 h-1) were recorded following soil wetting, but these pulses were short lived, lasting only up to 3 days. The total atmospheric loss of nitrogen was generally dominated by N2 emissions (82.4-99.3% of total N lost), although NO emissions contributed almost 43.2% to the total atmospheric nitrogen loss at 50% SM and 30 °C ST incubation settings (the contribution of N2 at these soil conditions was only 53.2%). N2O emissions were systematically higher for 3 of 12 sample locations, which indicates substantial spatial variability at site level, but on average soils acted as weak N2O sources or even sinks. By using a conservative upscale approach we estimate total annual emissions from savanna soils to average 0.12 kg N ha-1 yr-1 (N2O), 0.68 kg N ha-1 yr-1 (NO) and 6.65 kg N ha-1 yr-1 (N2). The analysis of long-term SM and ST records makes it clear that extreme soil saturation that can lead to high N2O and N2 emissions only occurs a few days per year and thus has little impact on the annual total. The potential contribution of nitrogen released due to pulse events compared to the total annual emissions was found to be of importance for NO emissions

  7. Inter-annual Variability of Evapotranspiration in a Semi-arid Oak-savanna Ecosystem: Measured and Modeled Buffering to Precipitation Changes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raz-Yaseef, N.; Sonnentag, O.; Kobayashi, H.; Baldocchi, D. D.

    2010-12-01

    Precipitation (P) is the primary control on vegetation dynamics and productivity, implying that climate induced disturbances in frequency and timing of P are intimately coupled with fluxes of carbon, water and energy. Future climate change is expected to increase extreme rainfall events as well as droughts, suggesting linked vegetation changes to an unknown extent. Semi-arid climates experience large inter-annual variability (IAV) in P, creating natural conditions adequate to study how year-to-year changes in P affect atmosphere-biosphere fluxes. We used a 10-year flux database collected at a semi-arid savanna site in order to: (1) define IAV in P by means of frequency and timing; (2) investigate how changes in P affect the ecohydrology of the forest and its partitioning into the main vapor fluxes, and (3) evaluate model capability to predict IAV of carbon and water fluxes above and below the canopy. This is based on the perception that the capability of process-oriented models to construct the deviation, and not the average, is important in order to correctly predict ecosystem sensitivity to climate change. Our research site was a low density and low LAI (0.8) semi-arid (P=523±180 mm yr-1) savanna site, combined of oaks and grass, and located at Tonzi ranch, California. Measurements of carbon and water fluxes above and below the tree canopy using eddy covariance and supplementary measurements have been made since 2001. Measured fluxes were compared to modeled based on two bio-meteorological process-oriented ecosystem models: BEPS and 3D-CAONAK. Our results show that IAV in P was large, and standard deviation (STD) was 38% of the average. Accordingly, the wet soil period (measured volumetric water content > 8%) varied between 156 days in dry years to 301 days in wet years. IAV of the vapor fluxes were lower than that of P (STD was 17% for the trees and 23% for the floor components), suggesting on ecosystem buffering to changes in P. The timing of grass green up

  8. Gafanhotos (Orthoptera, Acridoidea em áreas de cerrados e lavouras na Chapada dos Parecis, Estado de Mato Grosso, Brasil Grasshoppers (Orthoptera, Acridoidea in native savanna and crop areas in Chapada dos Parecis, Mato Grosso State, Brazil

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    Wanderlei Dias Guerra

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Gafanhotos (Orthoptera, Acridoidea em áreas de cerrados e lavouras na Chapada dos Parecis, Estado de Mato Grosso, Brasil. Foi determinada a composição e abundância de espécies de gafanhotos usando amostragem com rede entomológica durante 3 anos de estudo na Chapada dos Parecis, estado de Mato Grosso. O levantamento foi feito em áreas de lavouras e com vegetação ainda nativa (cerrados com, respectivamente, 56 e 59 locais inventariados em cada ambiente. Foram coletados 3.031 indivíduos de gafanhotos de 64 espécies distribuídas entre as famílias e subfamílias: Acrididae (49: Gomphocerinae (21, Ommatolampinae (10, Melanoplinae (6, Acridinae (4 Leptysminae (3, Copiocerinae (3, Proctolabinae (1 e Cyrtacanthacridinae (1; Romaleidae (1: Romaleinae (13 e Ommexechidae (1: Ommexechinae (2, além de 1550 ninfas. A diversidade de espécies foi maior no cerrado (61 do que nas lavouras (16, ocorrendo o inverso com relação à abundância onde as espécies Baeacris punctulatus (Thunberg, 1824 e Orphulella punctata (De Geer, 1773 predominaram representando 49,5% do total de indivíduos coletados em toda a Chapada dos Parecis e, juntas, somam 78,8% da abundância registrada nas áreas de lavouras e tem potencial de se tornarem pragas.Grasshoppers (Orthoptera, Acridoidea in native savanna and crop areas in Chapada dos Parecis, Mato Grosso State, Brazil. We determined the composition and abundance of grasshoppers using sweep net sampling during three years at the Parecis Plateau, State of Mato Grosso, Brazil. The survey was done in areas with crops and native vegetation (savanna with, respectively, 56 and 59 sites available in each environment. 3.031 individuals of grasshoppers were collected from 64 species distributed among the following families and subfamilies: Acrididae (49: Gomphocerinae (21, Ommatolampinae (10, Melanoplinae (6, Acridinae (4 Leptysminae (3, Copiocerinae (3, Proctolabinae (1 and Cyrtacanthacridinae (1; Romaleidae (1: Romaleinae

  9. The effects of past climate variability on fire and vegetation in the cerrãdo savanna ecosystem of the Huanchaca Mesetta, Noel Kempff Mercado National Park, NE Bolivia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maezumi, S. Y.; Power, M. J.; Mayle, F. E.; McLauchlan, K.; Iriarte, J.

    2015-01-01

    Cerrãdo savannas have the greatest fire activity of all major global land-cover types and play a significant role in the global carbon cycle. During the 21st century, temperatures are predicted to increase by ~ 3 °C coupled with a precipitation decrease of ~ 20%. Although these conditions could potentially intensify drought stress, it is unknown how that might alter vegetation composition and fire regimes. To assess how Neotropical savannas responded to past climate changes, a 14 500 year, high-resolution, sedimentary record from Huanchaca Mesetta, a palm swamp located in the cerrãdo savanna in northeastern Bolivia, was analyzed for phytoliths, stable isotopes and charcoal. A non-analogue, cold-adapted vegetation community dominated the Late Glacial-Early Holocene period (14 500-9000 ka), that included trees and C3 Pooideae and C4 Panicoideae grasses. The Late Glacial vegetation was fire sensitive and fire activity during this period was low, likely responding to fuel availability and limitation. Although similar vegetation characterized the Early Holocene, the warming conditions associated with the onset of the Holocene led to an initial increase in fire activity. Huanchaca Mesetta became increasingly fire-dependent during the Middle Holocene with the expansion of C4 fire adapted grasses. However, as warm, dry conditions, characterized by increased length and severity of the dry season, continued, fuel availability decreased. The establishment of the modern palm swamp vegetation occurred at 5000 cal yr BP. Edaphic factors are the first order control on vegetation on the rocky quartzite mesetta. Where soils are sufficiently thick, climate is the second order control of vegetation on the mesetta. The presence of the modern palm swamp is attributed to two factors: (1) increased precipitation that increased water table levels, and (2) decreased frequency and duration of surazos leading to increased temperature minima. Natural (soil, climate, fire) drivers rather

  10. Cost-Effectiveness of Seven Approaches to Map Vegetation Communities — A Case Study from Northern Australia’s Tropical Savannas

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    Stuart Phinn

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Vegetation communities are traditionally mapped from aerial photography interpretation. Other semi-automated methods include pixel- and object-based image analysis. While these methods have been used for decades, there is a lack of comparative research. We evaluated the cost-effectiveness of seven approaches to map vegetation communities in a northern Australia’s tropical savanna environment. The seven approaches included: (1. aerial photography interpretation, (2. pixel-based image-only classification (Maximum Likelihood Classifier, (3. pixel-based integrated classification (Maximum Likelihood Classifier, (4. object-based image-only classification (nearest neighbor classifier, (5. object-based integrated classification (nearest neighbor classifier, (6. object-based image-only classification (step-wise ruleset, and (7. object-based integrated classification (step-wise ruleset. Approach 1 was applied to 1:50,000 aerial photography and approaches 2–7 were applied to SPOT5 and Landsat5 TM multispectral data. The integrated approaches (3, 5 and 7 included ancillary data (a digital elevation model, slope model, normalized difference vegetation index and hydrology information. The cost-effectiveness was assessed taking into consideration the accuracy and costs associated with each classification approach and image dataset. Accuracy was assessed in terms of overall accuracy and the costs were evaluated using four main components: field data acquisition and preparation, image data acquisition and preparation, image classification and accuracy assessment. Overall accuracy ranged from 28%, for the image-only pixel-based approach, to 67% for the aerial photography interpretation, while total costs ranged from AU$338,000 to AU$388,180 (Australian dollars, for the pixel-based image-only classification and aerial photography interpretation respectively. The most labor-intensive component was field data acquisition and preparation, followed by image data

  11. Edaphic, structural and physiological contrasts across Amazon Basin forest–savanna ecotones suggest a role for potassium as a key modulator of tropical woody vegetation structure and function

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    J. Lloyd

    2015-11-01

    C / N ratios than nearby forest plots. These soil differences were also reflected in canopy averaged leaf traits with savanna trees typically having higher leaf mass per unit area but lower mass-based nitrogen (Nm and potassium (Km. Both Nm and Km also increased with declining mean annual precipitation (PA, but most area-based leaf traits such as leaf photosynthetic capacity showed no systematic variation with PA or vegetation type. Despite this invariance, when taken in conjunction with other measures such as mean canopy height, area-based soil exchangeable potassium content, [K]sa , proved to be an excellent predictor of several photosynthetic properties (including 13C isotope discrimination. Moreover, when considered in a multivariate context with PA and soil plant available water storage capacity (θP as covariates, [K]sa also proved to be an excellent predictor of stand-level canopy area, providing drastically improved fits as compared to models considering just PA and/or θP. Neither calcium, nor magnesium, nor soil pH could substitute for potassium when tested as alternative model predictors (ΔAIC > 10. Nor for any model could simple soil texture metrics such as sand or clay content substitute for either [K]sa or θP. Taken in conjunction with recent work in Africa and the forests of the Amazon Basin, this suggests – in combination with some newly conceptualised interacting effects of PA and θP also presented here – a critical role for potassium as a modulator of tropical vegetation structure and function.

  12. Multivariate analysis of effects of diurnal temperature and seasonal humidity variations by tropical savanna climate on the emissions of anthropogenic volatile organic compounds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Chih-Chung; Chen, Wei-Hsiang; Yuan, Chung-Shin; Lin, Chitsan

    2014-02-01

    Volatile organic compounds (VOCs), particularly those from anthropogenic sources, have been of substantial concern. In this study, the influences of diurnal temperature and seasonal humidity variations by tropical savanna climate on the distributions of VOCs from stationary industrial sources were investigated by analyzing the concentrations during the daytime and nighttime in the dry and wet seasons and assessing the results by principal component analysis (PCA) and cluster analysis. Kaohsiung City in Southern Taiwan, known for its severe VOC pollution, was chosen as the location to be examined. In the results, the VOC concentrations were lower during the daytime and in the wet season, possibly attributed to the stronger photochemical reactions and increasing inhibition of VOC emissions and transports by elevating humidity levels. Certain compounds became appreciably more important at higher humidity, as these compounds were saturated hydrocarbons with relatively low molecular weights. The influence of diurnal temperature variation on VOC distribution behaviors seemed to be less important than and interacted with that of seasonal humidity variation. Heavier aromatic hydrocarbons with more complex structures and some aliphatic compounds were found to be the main species accounting for the maximum variances of the data observed at high humidity, and the distinct grouping of compounds implied a pronounced inherent characteristic of each cluster in the observed VOC distributions. Under the influence of diurnal temperature variation, selected VOCs that may have stronger photochemical resistances and/or longer lifetimes in the atmosphere were clustered with each other in the cluster analysis, whereas the other groups might consist of compounds with different levels of vulnerability to sunlight or high temperatures. These findings prove the complications in the current knowledge regarding the VOC contaminations and providing insight for managing the adverse impacts of

  13. Impacts of 1.5 versus 2.0 °C on cereal yields in the West African Sudan Savanna

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    Faye, Babacar; Webber, Heidi; Naab, Jesse B.; MacCarthy, Dilys S.; Adam, Myriam; Ewert, Frank; Lamers, John P. A.; Schleussner, Carl-Friedrich; Ruane, Alex; Gessner, Ursula; Hoogenboom, Gerrit; Boote, Ken; Shelia, Vakhtang; Saeed, Fahad; Wisser, Dominik; Hadir, Sofia; Laux, Patrick; Gaiser, Thomas

    2018-03-01

    To reduce the risks of climate change, governments agreed in the Paris Agreement to limit global temperature rise to less than 2.0 °C above pre-industrial levels, with the ambition to keep warming to 1.5 °C. Charting appropriate mitigation responses requires information on the costs of mitigating versus associated damages for the two levels of warming. In this assessment, a critical consideration is the impact on crop yields and yield variability in regions currently challenged by food insecurity. The current study assessed impacts of 1.5 °C versus 2.0 °C on yields of maize, pearl millet and sorghum in the West African Sudan Savanna using two crop models that were calibrated with common varieties from experiments in the region with management reflecting a range of typical sowing windows. As sustainable intensification is promoted in the region for improving food security, simulations were conducted for both current fertilizer use and for an intensification case (fertility not limiting). With current fertilizer use, results indicated 2% units higher losses for maize and sorghum with 2.0 °C compared to 1.5 °C warming, with no change in millet yields for either scenario. In the intensification case, yield losses due to climate change were larger than with current fertilizer levels. However, despite the larger losses, yields were always two to three times higher with intensification, irrespective of the warming scenario. Though yield variability increased with intensification, there was no interaction with warming scenario. Risk and market analysis are needed to extend these results to understand implications for food security.

  14. Seasonal Variation and Ecosystem Dependence of Emission Factors for Selected Trace Gases and PM2.5 for Southern African Savanna Fires

    Science.gov (United States)

    Korontzi, S.; Ward, D. E.; Susott, R. A.; Yokelson, R. J.; Justice, C. O.; Hobbs, P. V.; Smithwick, E. A. H.; Hao, W. M.

    2003-01-01

    In this paper we present the first early dry season (early June-early August) emission factor measurements for carbon dioxide (CO2), carbon monoxide (CO), methane (Ca), nonmethane hydrocarbons (NMHC), and particulates with a diameter less than 2.5 microns (pM2.5) for southern African grassland and woodland fires. Seasonal emission factors for grassland fires correlate linearly with the proportion of green grass, used as a surrogate for the fuel moisture content, and are higher for products of incomplete combustion in the early part of the dry season compared with later in the dry season. Models of emission factors for NMHC and PM(sub 2.5) versus modified combustion efficiency (MCE) are statistically different in grassland compared with woodland ecosystems. We compare predictions based on the integration of emissions factors from this study, from the southern African Fire-Atmosphere Research Initiative 1992 (SAFARI-92), and from SAFARI-2000 with those based on the smaller set of ecosystem-specific emission factors to estimate the effects of using regional-average rather than ecosystem-specific emission factors. We also test the validity of using the SAFARI-92 models for emission factors versus MCE to predict the early dry season emission factors measured in this study. The comparison indicates that the largest discrepancies occur at the low end (0.907) and high end (0.972) of MCE values measured in this study. Finally, we combine our models of MCE versus proportion of green grass for grassland fires with emission factors versus MCE for selected oxygenated volatile organic compounds measured in the SAFARI-2000 campaign to derive the first seasonal emission factors for these compounds. The results of this study demonstrate that seasonal variations in savanna fire emissions are important and should be considered in modeling emissions at regional to continental scales.

  15. Estimating the Above-Ground Biomass in Miombo Savanna Woodlands (Mozambique, East Africa Using L-Band Synthetic Aperture Radar Data

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    Maria J. Vasconcelos

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available The quantification of forest above-ground biomass (AGB is important for such broader applications as decision making, forest management, carbon (C stock change assessment and scientific applications, such as C cycle modeling. However, there is a great uncertainty related to the estimation of forest AGB, especially in the tropics. The main goal of this study was to test a combination of field data and Advanced Land Observing Satellite (ALOS Phased Array L-band Synthetic Aperture Radar (PALSAR backscatter intensity data to reduce the uncertainty in the estimation of forest AGB in the Miombo savanna woodlands of Mozambique (East Africa. A machine learning algorithm, based on bagging stochastic gradient boosting (BagSGB, was used to model forest AGB as a function of ALOS PALSAR Fine Beam Dual (FBD backscatter intensity metrics. The application of this method resulted in a coefficient of correlation (R between observed and predicted (10-fold cross-validation forest AGB values of 0.95 and a root mean square error of 5.03 Mg·ha−1. However, as a consequence of using bootstrap samples in combination with a cross validation procedure, some bias may have been introduced, and the reported cross validation statistics could be overoptimistic. Therefore and as a consequence of the BagSGB model, a measure of prediction variability (coefficient of variation on a pixel-by-pixel basis was also produced, with values ranging from 10 to 119% (mean = 25% across the study area. It provides additional and complementary information regarding the spatial distribution of the error resulting from the application of the fitted model to new observations.

  16. Integration of UAV and ground-based Structure from Motion with Multi-View Stereo photogrammetry and hydrological data to quantify hillslope gully erosion processes in tropical savanna

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koci, J.; Jarihani, B.; Sidle, R. C.; Wilkinson, S. N.; Bartley, R.

    2017-12-01

    Structure from Motion with Multi-View Stereo (SfM-MVS) photogrammetry provides a cost-effective method of rapidly acquiring high resolution (sub-meter) topographic data, but is rarely used in hydrogeomorphic investigations of gully erosion. This study integrates high resolution topographic and land cover data derived from an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) and ground-based SfM-MVS photogrammetry, with rainfall and gully discharge data, to elucidate hydrogeomorphic processes driving hillslope gully erosion. The study is located within a small (13 km2) dry-tropical savanna catchment within the Burdekin River Basin, northeast Australia, which is a major contributor sediments and nutrients to the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area. A pre-wet season UAV survey covered an entire hillslope gully system (0.715 km2), and is used to derive topography, ground cover and hydrological flow pathways in the gully contributing area. Ground-based surveys of a single active gully (650 m2) within the broader hillslope are compared between pre- and post-wet season conditions to quantify gully geomorphic change. Rainfall, recorded near to the head of the gully, is related to gully discharge during sporadic storm events. The study provides valuable insights into the relationships among hydrological flow pathways, ground cover, rainfall and runoff, and spatial patterns of gully morphologic change. We demonstrate how UAV and ground-based SfM-MVS photogrammetry can be used to improve hydrogeomorphic process understanding and aid in the modelling and management of hillslope gully systems.

  17. Modeling spatial patterns of plant distribution as a consequence of hydrological dynamic processes in a Venezuelan flooding savanna = Modelo espacial de distribución de plantas como consecuencia de la dinámica hidrológica en una sabana inundable Venezolana

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Chacón-Moreno, E.J.; Smith, J.K.; Skidmore, A.K.; Prins, H.H.T.; Toxopeus, A.G.

    2007-01-01

    This study presents the main results of the analysis and integration of ecological ordination and spatially explicit relationships into an ecological-spatial model. This allows understanding, evaluating and predicting the distribution of dominant plant species in a changing flooding savanna

  18. Effects of anabolic and catabolic nutrients on woody plant encroachment after long-term experimental fertilization in a South African savanna.

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    Anthony J Mills

    Full Text Available The causes of the worldwide problem of encroachment of woody plants into grassy vegetation are elusive. The effects of soil nutrients on competition between herbaceous and woody plants in various landscapes are particularly poorly understood. A long-term experiment of 60 plots in a South African savanna, comprising annual applications of ammonium sulphate (146-1166 kg ha-1 yr-1 and superphosphate (233-466 kg ha-1 yr-1 over three decades, and subsequent passive protection over another three decades, during which indigenous trees encroached on different plots to extremely variable degrees, provided an opportunity to investigate relationships between soil properties and woody encroachment. All topsoils were analysed for pH, acidity, EC, water-dispersible clay, Na, Mg, K, Ca, P, S, C, N, NH4, NO3, B, Mn, Cu and Zn. Applications of ammonium sulphate (AS, but not superphosphate (SP, greatly constrained tree abundance relative to control plots. Differences between control plots and plots that had received maximal AS application were particularly marked (16.3 ± 5.7 versus 1.2 ± 0.8 trees per plot. Soil properties most affected by AS applications included pH (H2O (control to maximal AS application: 6.4 ± 0.1 to 5.1 ± 0.2, pH (KCl (5.5 ± 0.2 to 4.0 ± 0.1, acidity (0.7 ± 0.1 to 2.6 ± 0.3 cmol kg-1, acid saturation (8 ± 2 to 40 ± 5%, Mg (386 ± 25 to 143 ± 15 mg kg-1, Ca (1022 ± 180 to 322 ± 14 mg kg-1, Mn (314 ± 11 to 118 ± 9 mg kg-1, Cu (3.6 ± 0.3 to 2.3 ± 0.2 mg kg-1 and Zn (6.6 ± 0.4 to 3.7 ± 0.4 mg kg-1. Magnesium, B, Mn and Cu were identified using principal component analysis, boundary line analysis and Kruskal-Wallis rank sum tests as the nutrients most likely to be affecting tree abundance. The ratio Mn/Cu was most related to tree abundance across the experiment, supporting the hypothesis that competition between herbaceous and woody plants depends on the availability of anabolic relative to catabolic nutrients. These findings

  19. Sun-induced Chlorophyll fluorescence and PRI improve remote sensing GPP estimates under varying nutrient availability in a typical Mediterranean savanna ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perez-Priego, O.; Guan, J.; Rossini, M.; Fava, F.; Wutzler, T.; Moreno, G.; Carvalhais, N.; Carrara, A.; Kolle, O.; Julitta, T.; Schrumpf, M.; Reichstein, M.; Migliavacca, M.

    2015-07-01

    This study investigates the performances of different optical indices to estimate gross primary production (GPP) of herbaceous stratum in a Mediterranean savanna with different Nitrogen (N) and Phosphorous (P) availability. Sun-induced chlorophyll Fluorescence yield computed at 760 nm (Fy760), scaled-photochemical reflectance index (sPRI), MERIS terrestrial-chlorophyll index (MTCI) and Normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) were computed from near-surface field spectroscopy measurements collected using high spectral resolution spectrometers covering the visible near-infrared regions. GPP was measured using canopy-chambers on the same locations sampled by the spectrometers. We hypothesized that light-use efficiency (LUE) models driven by remote sensing quantities (RSM) can better track changes in GPP caused by nutrient supplies compared to those driven exclusively by meteorological data (MM). Particularly, we compared the performances of different RSM formulations - relying on the use of Fy760 or sPRI as proxy for LUE and NDVI or MTCI as fraction of absorbed photosynthetically active radiation (fAPAR) - with those of classical MM. Results showed significantly higher GPP in the N fertilized experimental plots during the growing period. These differences in GPP disappeared in the drying period when senescence effects masked out potential differences due to plant N content. Consequently, although MTCI was tightly related to plant N content (r2 = 0.86, p < 0.01), it was poorly related to GPP (r2 = 0.45, p < 0.05). On the contrary sPRI and Fy760 correlated well with GPP during the whole measurement period. Results revealed that the relationship between GPP and Fy760 is not unique across treatments but it is affected by N availability. Results from a cross validation analysis showed that MM (AICcv = 127, MEcv = 0.879) outperformed RSM (AICcv = 140, MEcv = 0.8737) when soil moisture was used to constrain the seasonal dynamic of LUE. However, residual analyses

  20. Sun-induced chlorophyll fluorescence and photochemical reflectance index improve remote-sensing gross primary production estimates under varying nutrient availability in a typical Mediterranean savanna ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perez-Priego, O.; Guan, J.; Rossini, M.; Fava, F.; Wutzler, T.; Moreno, G.; Carvalhais, N.; Carrara, A.; Kolle, O.; Julitta, T.; Schrumpf, M.; Reichstein, M.; Migliavacca, M.

    2015-11-01

    This study investigates the performances of different optical indices to estimate gross primary production (GPP) of herbaceous stratum in a Mediterranean savanna with different nitrogen (N) and phosphorous (P) availability. Sun-induced chlorophyll fluorescence yield computed at 760 nm (Fy760), scaled photochemical reflectance index (sPRI), MERIS terrestrial-chlorophyll index (MTCI) and normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) were computed from near-surface field spectroscopy measurements collected using high spectral resolution spectrometers covering the visible near-infrared regions. GPP was measured using canopy chambers on the same locations sampled by the spectrometers. We tested whether light-use efficiency (LUE) models driven by remote-sensing quantities (RSMs) can better track changes in GPP caused by nutrient supplies compared to those driven exclusively by meteorological data (MM). Particularly, we compared the performances of different RSM formulations - relying on the use of Fy760 or sPRI as a proxy for LUE and NDVI or MTCI as a fraction of absorbed photosynthetically active radiation (fAPAR) - with those of classical MM. Results showed higher GPP in the N-fertilized experimental plots during the growing period. These differences in GPP disappeared in the drying period when senescence effects masked out potential differences due to plant N content. Consequently, although MTCI was closely related to the mean of plant N content across treatments (r2 = 0.86, p < 0.01), it was poorly related to GPP (r2 = 0.45, p < 0.05). On the contrary sPRI and Fy760 correlated well with GPP during the whole measurement period. Results revealed that the relationship between GPP and Fy760 is not unique across treatments, but it is affected by N availability. Results from a cross-validation analysis showed that MM (AICcv = 127, MEcv = 0.879) outperformed RSM (AICcv =140, MEcv = 0.8737) when soil moisture was used to constrain the seasonal dynamic of LUE. However

  1. BRS Deméter: nova cultivar de cevada cervejeira irrigada para o Cerrado do Brasil Central BRS Deméter: new malting barley cultivar for irrigated Brazilian savanna

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    Renato Fernando Amabile

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available BRS Deméter é uma cultivar de cevada dística (duas fileiras de grãos de ampla adaptação, sob irrigação, ao Cerrado do Brasil Central. Apresenta potencial produtivo de grãos acima de 5.000 kg ha-1, estabilidade de produção e alta qualidade industrial malte-cervejeira. A cultivar atende às demandas do produtor por rendimento competitivo e às da indústria malteira por alta qualidade cervejeira.BRS Deméter is a spring, two-rowed barley, widely adapted to irrigated areas of the savanna, in Central Brazil. It presents production stability and high malting quality, with yield potential above 5,000 kg ha-1. It fulfills both the farmer and malting industry expectations regarding competitive yield and brewing quality.

  2. How will land use affect air temperature in the surface boundary layer? Lessons learned from a comparative study on the energy balance of an oak savanna and annual grassland in California, USA

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    Dennis Baldocchi

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available We investigated the effect of land use on differences in air temperature. We based our analysis on a decade of weather and energy flux measurements, collected over two contrasting landscapes, an oak savanna and an annual grassland, growing under the same climate conditions. Over the decade, the daily-averaged, potential air temperature above the aerodynamically rougher and optically darker oak savanna was 0.5°C warmer than that above the aerodynamically smoother and optically brighter annual grassland. However, air temperature differences were seasonal. Smallest differences in potential air temperature occurred towards the end of spring, when much of the soil moisture reservoir was depleted. Largest differences in potential air temperature occurred during the winter rain season when the grass was green and transpiring and when the trees were senescent or deciduous. To understand the effect of land use on the local climate, we examined the concomitant changes in net radiation, sensible and latent heat exchange, the aerodynamic roughness (R a, the surface resistance to water transfer (R s, aerodynamic surface temperature and the growth of the planetary boundary layer, with measurements and model computations. Overall, these biophysical variables provide us with mechanistic information to diagnose and predict how changes in air temperature will follow changes in land use or management. In conclusion, land use change is responsible for having a marked impact on the local climate of a region. At the local level, the change in the surface energy balance, towards a darker and rougher surface, will produce an additive increment to climate warming induced by a greater greenhouse gas burden in the atmosphere.

  3. Trophic structure of a fish community in Bananal stream subbasin in Brasília National Park, Cerrado biome (Brazilian Savanna, DF

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    Mariana Schneider

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to determine the trophic structure of the fish community in the Bananal stream subbasin, which belongs to a well-preserved Cerrado area (Brazilian Savanna in Brasília National Park, Brazil. We also evaluated the influence of environmental variations in the diet of fish species. Four samples were taken in each 30 m long established transect, two in the rainy season and two in the dry season. A total of 1,050 stomachs of the 13 most abundant species were analyzed. A total of 36 food items were consumed, where 24 were autochthonous, 8 allochthonous, and 4 of undetermined origin. Non-metric multidimensional scaling (NMDS analysis, in addition to the results of frequency of occurrence and abundance charts, was used to determine four groups of feeding guilds: detritivores, omnivores (tending toward herbivory and invertivory, invertivores and piscivores. Around 69% of the volume of resources consumed was allochthonous, which proves the importance of the resources provided by riparian vegetation. The contribution of autochthonous and allochthonous items in the diet differed due to seasonality for Aspidoras fuscoguttatus, Astyanax sp., Characidium xanthopterum, Hyphessobrycon balbus, Kolpotocheirodon theloura, Moenkhausia sp., Phalloceros harpagos, and Rivulus pictus. Despite the Cerrado climate characteristics, there was no significant influence of season on the fish diet. The absence of seasonal variation and the predominance of allochthonous items in the fish diet are probably associated with the presence of riparian vegetation, which acts as a transition area in the Cerrado biome and provides resources for the aquatic fauna. This work shows the importance of studies in non-disturbed areas considered here as a source of information concerning the biology of fish species and as a guide for direct conservation policies on the management of aquatic resources, recovery of damaged areas and determination of priority areas for

  4. Determinación de la actividad lignocelulolítica en sustrato natural de aislamientos fúngicos obtenidos de sabana de pastoreo y de bosque secundario de sabana inundable tropical Determination of lignocellulolytic activity in a natural substrate of native fungi strains obtained from savanna and of secondary forest from a tropical flooded savanna

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martha Lucía Ortiz Moreno

    2010-12-01

    integrated samples. A lignolytic strain (005L Verticillium spp. and 72 cellulolytic strains were obtained. A comparison of soil usages (savanna grazing and secondary forest showed no correlation between the number of obtained genera and soil characteristics. Selection of the strains to be evaluated in a dry-grass natural substrate (Brachiaria spp. was carried out by quantification of lignolytic and cellulolytic activity. Two strains with high exoglucanase activity (055C and 061C Penicillium spp. and a strain with high endoglucanase activity (019C Trichoderma spp. relative to the Trichoderma viride control were selected and evaluated in the natural substrate in consortia formed by one lignolytic and one cellulolytic. The test showed that the enzymatic activity of the selected strains increased in the substrate grass, surpassing that of the positive controls (Pleurotus ostreatus for lignin and T. viride for cellulose for both consortia. The use of the consortia is therefore recommended for the development of soil conditioning biofertilizers, especially that formed by the 005L (Verticillium spp. and 055C (Penicillium spp. strains with high lignolytic and cellulolytic activity.

  5. Climate and vegetation in a semi-arid savanna: Development of a climate–vegetation response model linking plant metabolic performance to climate and the effects on forage availability for large herbivores

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    Armin H. Seydack

    2012-02-01

    Developing the climate–vegetation response model involved three main components, namely (1 defining indicators of forage availability to herbivores (nitrogen productivity, nitrogen quality, carbon-nutrient quality, (2 identifying herbivore species guilds of similar nutritional requirements with respect to these indicators [bulk feeders with tolerance to fibrous herbage (buffalo, waterbuck, bulk feeders with preference for high nitrogen quality forage (short grass preference grazers: blue wildebeest and zebra and selective feeders where dietary items of relatively high carbon-nutrient quality represented key forage resources (selective grazers: sable antelope, roan antelope, tsessebe, eland] and (3 developing a process model where the expected effects of plant metabolic responses to climate on key forage resources were made explicit. According to the climate–vegetation response model both shorter-term transient temperature acclimation pulses and longer-term shifts in plant metabolic functionality settings were predicted to have occurred in response to temperature trends over the past century. These temperature acclimation responses were expected to have resulted in transient pulses of increased forage availability (increased nitrogen- and carbon-nutrient quality, as well as the progressive long-term decline of the carbon-nutrient quality of forage. Conservation implications: The climate–vegetation response model represents a research framework for further studies contributing towards the enhanced understanding of landscape-scale functioning of savanna systems with reference to the interplay between climate, vegetation and herbivore population dynamics. Gains in such understanding can support sound conservation management.

  6. Comparações entre as propriedades químicas de solos das regiões da floresta amazônica e do cerrado do Brasil Central Comparisons of chemical properties of forest (Amazon region and savanna soils (central region of Brazil

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    J.L.I. Demattê

    1993-09-01

    e para os solos argilosos a muito argilosos, o teor de carbono orgânico é sempre mais elevado na região de cerrado. Não houve diferenças significativas entre o teor de carbono orgânico dos solos com vegetação de cerrado e cerradão. Por outro lado, o teor de carbono orgânico dos latossolos da região Amazônica é mais elevado do que dos PVA.Chemical properties were studied in soil samples from two main fisiographic regions of Brazil: the Amazon region represented by the tropical rain forests and the Brazilian central region represented by the savanna (cerrado vegetation. For this study 17 profiles were selected from the Triângulo Mineiro area: 6 profiles from Goias state, and 5 profiles from the south eastern part of the Mato Grosso State. Most of the profiles are oxisols from medium to clayey texture. For the Amazon region 76 profiles were selected (38 oxisols and 38 ultisols located from Para to Acre States. The following depths were selected: 0-10 cm; 10-40 cm; 40-80 cm and 80-100 cm. The litter layer was not studied. The savanna region has soil in a more advanced weathered stage than the Amazon region. The Ki index of savanna soils varies from 6.0 to 1.5 and of Amazon soils the variation is from 1.3 to 2.5 that included Oxisols (Ki from 1.3 to 2.0 and Ultisols (Ki above 2.0. This indicates that the clay mineralogy of savanna soils is represented by an oxidic mineralogy that is more stable than in the Amazon region represented by a caulinitic mineralogy with 2:1 contribution. The Amazon soils are more acid and present exchangeable At in higher amounts than savanna soils with a direct effect on chemical management. Soils pH correction requires more lime in Amazon soils than in the savanna. The are great differences in both regions between base saturation and pH index. In Amazon soils the pH increase follows the base saturation while this does not occur in savanna soils. In sandy soils the organic carbon is higher in Amazon for all depths studied. In

  7. Atributos químicos e atividade microbiana em solos convertidos de savana para plantios de Acacia mangium Willd em Roraima. = Chemical attribuites and microbial activity in soils converted to savanna for plantations of Acacia mangium Willd. in Roraima, Brazil.

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    Moisés Mourão Júnior

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available A atividade microbiana tem sido empregada na avaliação de solos manejados, sendo um indicador importante na caracterização de solos alterados. Nesse sentido, objetivou-se com o presente trabalho avaliar o efeito de plantios de Acacia mangium com diferentes idades sobre os atributos químicos e atividade microbiana em solos representativos da Savana do Estado de Roraima. Os plantios de A. mangium de três e cinco anos encontravam-se em áreas de LATOSSOLO AMARELO Distrófico e os de quatro e seis anos em ARGISSOLO AMARELO Distrófico. As áreas próximas aos plantios com as mesmas condições de solos e com cobertura vegetal primária (savana natural constituiram as testemunhas. Foram amostrados os horizontes A e B sendo avaliados os atributos químicos dos solos e a atividade microbiana. A pobreza química e elevadasaturação por alumínio (%m dos solos estudados influenciaram significativamente nos menores valores de C-CO2 evoluído pela atividade microbiana. A maior atividade microbiana ocorreu em áreas plantadas independentemente do tipo de solo, em função das melhores condições químicas. Os maiores valores de C-CO2 evoluído correlacionaram-se melhor com os teores de carbono orgânico e matéria orgânica do solo. = Microbial activity has been used in the evaluation of soils, an important indicator in the characterization of alteredsoils. Therefore, this study has as aim to evaluate the effect of replacing natural vegetation to plantations of Acacia mangium onmicrobial activity in soils of savannas in Roraima state. The areas studied consisted of plantations of acacia with three and fiveyears in Yellow Latosol with four and six years in yellow Alfisols. Areas near the plantations with the same conditions of soiland vegetation (natural savanna were considered control. Were sampled the A and B horizons, corresponding depths 0-30 and 30-60 cm respectively, with three replications for a total of 36 experimental units. The results

  8. Carbono orgânico e biomassa microbiana do solo em plantios de Acacia mangium no Cerrado de Roraima Soil organic carbon and soil microbial biomass in Acacia mangium plantation in the Savanna of Roraima

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    Sara Magda Oliveira Simões

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available O objetivo do estudo foi avaliar os efeitos de plantios de Acacia mangium, localizados no cerrado em Roraima, sobre o carbono orgânico e biomassa microbiana do solo. Foram realizadas amostragens de solo nas profundidades de 0-20 cm e 20-40 cm em dois plantios de A. mangium com cerca de cinco anos de idade, e em duas áreas de Cerrado nativo consideradas referência. Um dos plantios de A. mangium (localizado na Fazenda Cigolina correspondeu a um plantio homogêneo (espa��amento de 3,6 m entre linhas e 2,0 m entre plantas enquanto que o outro (localizado no Campo Experimental Água Boa - CEAB correspondeu a um plantio em faixas com duas linhas de plantio (espaçamento de 6 m entre linhas, 2,5 m entre plantas e cerca de 30 m entre faixas. As amostras de solo foram analisadas quanto ao carbono orgânico, carbono da biomassa microbiana, respiração basal do solo e quociente metabólico, além de atributos químicos de fertilidade. Foi verificado que os plantios de A. mangium não proporcionaram aumentos significativos do carbono orgânico do solo em comparação às áreas de referência. Entretanto, na média geral, esses plantios proporcionaram aumento do carbono da biomassa microbiana do solo e redução do quociente metabólico, indicando a possibilidade de acúmulo de carbono orgânico no solo em longo prazo. Também foi observado que, em comparação ao plantio da fazenda Cigolina e às áreas de referência, o carbono microbiano do solo foi maior e acompanhado de menor quociente metabólico no plantio de A. mangium no CEAB, mostrando que a estrutura de plantio exerceu influência sobre a biomassa microbiana do solo.The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of Acacia mangium plantation in the Roraima's Savanna, on soil organic carbon and soil microbial biomass. Soil samplings were collected on the depths of 0-20 cm and 20-40 cm in two Acacia mangium plantation sites, about five years old, and in two sites of native savanna as

  9. Is deciduousness a key to climate resilience among iconic California savanna oak species? Relating phenological habits to seasonal indicators of tree physiological and water stress across field, hyperspectral, drone (UAS)-based multispectral and thermal image data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mayes, M. T.; Caylor, K. K.; Ehlmann, B. L.; Greenberger, R. N.; Estes, L. D.

    2017-12-01

    In California (CA) savannas, oak trees (genus Quercus) play keystone roles in water and nutrient cycling, support biodiversity and many land-use activities. Declines in oak basal area of up to 25% from the 1930s-2000s, which have occurred alongside climate trends such as increasing variability of rainfall and prevalence of hotter droughts, threaten the services and ecological functions these trees provide. It is particularly unclear how climate relates to productivity and stress across oak species. Past work has found that seedling recruitment has varied inversely with "deciduousness." That is, evergreen oaks (e.g. Quercus agrifola. Coast Live Oak) are reproducing more successfully than drought-deciduous (e.g. Quercus douglassi, Blue Oak), which in turn are more successful than fully deciduous species (e.g. Quercus lobata, Valley Oak). However, there is poor understanding of how these ecological trends by species, corresponding with phenological habit, relate to physiological and ecohydrological processes such as carbon assimilation, water or nutrient use efficiency in mature tree stands. This limits predictive capability for which species will be most resilient to harsher future growing conditions, and, how to monitor stress and productivity in long-lived mature oak communities across landscapes via tools including remotely sensed data. This project explores how ecophysiological variables (e.g. stomatal conductance) relate to phenological habits across three oak species (Coast Live, Blue and Valley) over a seasonal dry-down period in Santa Barbara County, CA. Our goal is to probe if deciduousness is a key to resilience in productivity and water stress across iconic oak species. We test relationships between leaf and canopy-level field data, and indicators from multiple new sources of remotely sensed data, including ground hyperspectral, drone (UAS)-based multi-spectral and thermal image data, as means of monitoring tree physiological and water stress from scales

  10. Notas sobre a composição arbóreo-arbustiva de uma fisionomia das savanas de Roraima, Amazônia Brasileira Notes on the woody composition of a vegetation physionomy of the Roraima's savannas, Brazilian Amazonia

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    Reinaldo Imbrozio Barbosa

    2005-06-01

    Full Text Available Foi realizado um inventário florístico das espécies arbóreo-arbustivas presentes em uma das unidades de vegetação que compõem a paisagem de savanas do Estado de Roraima, extremo norte da Amazônia brasileira. Esta unidade é caracterizada por ser densamente colonizada por ninhos do cupim Cornitermes ovatus Emerson. Foram observadas 29 espécies (15 famílias botânicas em três localidades utilizadas para a amostragem. O total de espécies, por localidade, variou de 12 a 20. As espécies mais abundantes foram Byrsonima verbascifolia (L. DC. e Mimosa microcephala Humb. & Bonpl. ex Willd. (subarbustivas, Byrsonima cf. intermedia A. Juss. e Randia formosa (Jack. K. Schum. (arbustivas e, Byrsonima crassifolia (L. H.B.K. e Curatella americana L. (arbóreas. Oito espécies são comuns às três localidades. A diversidade medida pelo Índice de Shannon (H' foi baixa para todos os locais amostrados (A floristic inventory of woody species was carried out in one of the vegetation units that compose the savannas landscape of the Roraima State, northernmost of Brazilian Amazonia. This unit is characterized by dense colonization of nests of termites Cornitermes ovatus Emerson. Twenty nine woody species were observed (15 botany families in three localities used for sampling. The total of species varied from 12 to 20 by locality. The most abundant species were Byrsonima verbascifolia (L. DC. and Mimosa microcephala Humb. & Bonpl. ex Willd. (dwarf shrubs, Byrsonima cf. intermedia A. Juss. and Randia formosa (Jack. K. Schum. (shrubby and, Byrsonima crassifolia (L. H.B.K. and Curatella americana L. (arboreal. Eight species are common to all localities. Diversity measured by the Index of Shannon (H' was low for all the areas sampled (<0.90 indicating high specimens concentration in few species. The Index of Sørensen indicated similarities (± 0.60 among studied areas, suggesting a group of landscapes with common plant diversity, representing a same

  11. Estabelecimento e desenvolvimento de Dalbergia miscolobium Benth. em duas fitofisionomias típicas dos cerrados do Brasil Central Establishment and development of Dalbergia miscolobium Benth. in two typical savanna physiognomies of Central Brazil

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    Vívian S. Braz

    2000-04-01

    herbivoria na seca e pelo sombreamento e ataque de patógenos na estação chuvosa.The savannas of Central Brazil are characterized by a continuous, predominantly grassy, ground layer and an open layer of trees and shrubs of a variable density. In this study we examined the effects of drought, habitat type, the canopy light condition, herbivory and fire in the establishment and growth of Dalbergia miscolobium Benth., a legume tree typical of the savannas of Central Brazil. Saplings were transplanted into the grass matrix of a grassland with scattered trees and shrubs ("campo sujo", and into the semi-closed canopy of shrubs and trees that characterized the "cerrado" physiognomy. Sapling survival, shoot growth, leaf production and leaf herbivory were followed monthly over a five-year period (1993-1998. Mortality occurred predominantly during wet periods, and seasonal drought was not an important mortality factor. Sapling survival was greater in the "campo sujo" and they even survived a fire at the end of the dry season of 1994, while several saplings at the cerrado site were killed. Shoot growth was low, about 2.2cm/year in the "campo sujo", and 3.1cm/year in the "cerrado", mostly in the wet season. Leaves were shed during the dry season, and the peak in number of leaves in mid to late wet season was followed by a peak in leaf area loss by herbivory. Necrotic black spots, caused by the fungus Phoma sp. were observed in the leaves of most plants. Canopy shading could limit CO2 assimilation (Aco2 in the initial phases of plant development. Light measurements suggested that 5cm tall saplings with horizontal leaves would receive enough light to reach, on an average only 32% of maximum A CO2 during the daylight period. Since the height of the grass layer was mostly less than 50cm, an increase in plant height from 5 to 50cm would result in a twofold increase of Aco2 averaged over the daylight period. Thus, the development of D. miscolobium was restricted by water stress and

  12. Diversidade genética de pitayas nativas do cerrado com base em marcadores RAPD Genetic diversity of native pitaya native from brazilian savannas with basis on RAPD markers

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    Keize Pereira Junqueira

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available As pitayas do Cerrado vegetam naturalmente sobre maciços rochosos de arenito ou quartzito, troncos de árvores e em solos arenosos de campos rupestres de Minas Gerais, Bahia, Goiás, Distrito Federal, Tocantins, Rio de Janeiro e Bahia, havendo fortes evidências de que a região central do Brasil seja o maior centro de dispersão das pitayas, tendo em vista a grande diversidade fenotípica observada em acessos coletados. Objetivou-se realizar o estudo da diversidade genética de 13 acessos de pitayas mantidos na coleção de germoplasma da Embrapa Cerrados por meio de marcadores moleculares RAPD (Random Amplified Polymorphic DNA. O DNA genômico de cada acesso foi extraído, e quatorze iniciadores decâmeros foram utilizados para a obtenção de marcadores moleculares RAPD, que foram convertidos em matriz de dados binários, a partir da qual foram estimadas as distâncias genéticas entre os acessos com base no complemento do coeficiente de similaridade de Nei e Li (1979 e realizadas análises de agrupamento e de dispersão gráfica. Foram obtidos 162 marcadores RAPD, perfazendo uma média de 11,57 marcadores por primer. Do total de marcadores, 154 (95,06% foram polimórficos. As distâncias genéticas variaram entre 0,088 e 0,848, sendo que os maiores valores observados se referem a distância entre o acesso de Unaí-MG e o acesso Seleção Embrapa Cerrados. O acesso que mais se diferenciou dos demais foi "Unaí-MG", que apresentou uma distância genética média de 0,675 em relação aos demais acessos. A alta distância genética verificada é devido ao fato de os referidos acessos não pertencerem à mesma espécie. Os agrupamentos dos acessos de pitaya pouco se relacionaram com a origem geográfica dos mesmos. A grande diversidade genética das pitayas encontradas no Cerrado permite incluir esse Bioma no centro de diversidade e abre boas perspectivas para maiores estudos acerca do potencial dessa frutífera.Brazilian savanna pitayas

  13. Dinâmica do ecótono floresta-campo no sul do estado do Amazonas no Holoceno, através de estudos isotópicos e fitossociológicos Vegetation dynamics during the Holocene in a forest-savanna transition, Southern Amazon Basin, based on isotope and phytosociological studies

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    Elaine Vidotto

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available Com o emprego dos isótopos do carbono (12C, 13C, 14C da matéria orgânica do solo (MOS e das plantas, é apresentado um estudo comparativo entre perfis orgânicos de solos formados em depressões de áreas cobertas por ecossistemas de campos e florestas ao sul do estado do Amazonas, visando o entendimento da dinâmica da paleovegetação. A dinâmica da vegetação atual na região foi avaliada utilizando-se estudos fitossociológicos e caracterizações botânica e isotópica (delta13C das espécies de plantas presentes em duas bordas floresta-campo. Teores de carbono orgânico total foram superiores nas camadas superficiais no campo, quando comparados com a floresta. Dados de delta13C associados à cronologia do 14C indicaram predomínio de plantas C3 no início do Holoceno em ambos os ecótonos. Entre aproximadamente 7.000-3.000 anos AP verificou-se a influência crescente de plantas C4, indicando regressão da floresta com possível presença de um clima mais seco. A partir de aproximadamente 3.000 anos AP os dados sugeriram expansão da floresta provavelmente relacionada ao retorno a um clima mais úmido. A presença de algumas espécies características da borda, como a Sclerolobium paniculatum e Himatanthus sucuuba, nos campos, sugere o atual avanço da floresta sobre os mesmos. Estas espécies estariam sendo as bioindicadoras desse avanço.This paper presents a comparative study between organic soil horizons formed in depressions located at the forest/savanna boundary in the Southern Amazon Basin. The influence of the paleovegetation dynamics, based on carbon isotope (12C, 13C and 14C data of soil organic matter (SOM and plants was evaluated, as well as the present vegetation dynamics, inferred from the modern vegetation structure, composition and phytosociology. The uppermost soil horizon in savanna showed higher total carbon content than in forest. 13C and 14C data from soil samples indicated a predominance of C3 plants in the early

  14. Propriedades químicas de um Neossolo Quartzarênico sob diferentes sistemas de manejo no Cerrado mato-grossense Soil chemical properties in a Typic Quartzipisamment under different management systems in Brazilian savanna in Mato Grosso State, Brazil

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    Leidivan Almeida Frazão

    2008-05-01

    Full Text Available O objetivo deste trabalho foi avaliar o efeito de diferentes usos da terra e sistemas de manejo do solo, nas características químicas de um Neossolo Quartzarênico, no Cerrado de Mato Grosso. Os tratamentos estudados foram: cerrado nativo; uma pastagem de baixa produtividade com 22 anos de implantação; plantio convencional com 1 e 4 anos de uso e diferentes sucessões de culturas; e plantio direto com 5 anos de implantação. Foram determinados os teores de carbono e nitrogênio, pH, acidez potencial, capacidade de troca de cátions (CTC, fósforo disponível, bases trocáveis e saturação por bases do solo. Os valores mais baixos de pH, fósforo disponível, potássio, cálcio e magnésio foram observados nas áreas sob cerrado e pastagem, e a menor concentração de carbono no solo sob pastagem refletiu menor CTC do solo. A aplicação do calcário nos tratamentos com plantio convencional e direto favorece o aumento das concentrações de cálcio e magnésio no solo. Nesses sistemas, a saturação por bases (V% do solo é mais elevada nas áreas com maior tempo de implantação (4 e 5 anos. Embora o Neossolo Quartzarênico possua limitações para o cultivo, em razão de sua baixa fertilidade natural, se adequadamente manejado, este solo apresenta potencial para o cultivo agrícola.The objective of this work was to evaluate the effect of different land uses and soil management systems, on chemical characteristics of a Typic Quartzipisamment in the savanna (Cerrado of Mato Grosso State, Brazil. The treatments studied were: native cerrado; pasture with low productivity for 22 years; conventional tillage with one and four years and different crop successions; and no-tillage for five years. Soil carbon and nitrogen, pH, potential acidity, cation exchange capacity (CEC, available phosphorus, exchangeable bases and base saturation were determined. The cerrado and pasture treatments had the lowest pH, available phosphorus, calcium and magnesium

  15. Formas de carbono em Latossolo Vermelho Eutroférrico sob plantio direto no sistema biogeográfico do cerrado Carbon forms of a Typic Eutroferric Red Latossol under no-tillage in a savanna biogeographic system

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    M. E. C. Rosa

    2003-10-01

    Full Text Available Este trabalho teve por objetivo avaliar aspectos da física, química e da dinâmica de carbono de um Latossolo Vermelho Eutroférrico, sob diferentes condições de uso. Foram utilizados materiais de solo cultivado com plantio direto, irrigado e sequeiro, e sob floresta nativa, na região de Santa Helena de Goiás (GO. As amostras foram coletadas de camadas de 0,00-0,05, 0,05-0,10, 0,10-0,20, 0,20-0,30 e 0,30-0,40 m e separadas em agregados maiores e menores que 0,25 mm. Foram realizadas análises químicas e físicas para caracterização do solo e determinados o carbono orgânico total, o carbono mineralizável, o carbono da biomassa microbiana, o carbono solúvel em água e a matéria orgânica lábil. Os resultados, indicaram que o plantio direto não foi capaz de manter os níveis de carbono nos agregados, quando comparado ao solo sob floresta nativa; a matéria orgânica desempenhou papel relevante na formação e estabilização de agregados maiores que 0,25 mm; a porosidade, resistência ao penetrômetro e densidade do solo demonstraram que houve aumento da compactação do solo no sistema plantio direto, quando comparado ao solo sob floresta nativa, tendo a densidade se mostrado uma variável satisfatória para a avaliação de compactação no Latossolo Vermelho Eutroférrico; a matéria orgânica lábil apresentou potencial para ser utilizada em estudos de ciclagem de nutrientes e fenômenos de dispersão e floculação de argila.The objective of this study was to evaluate physical and chemical soil properties and organic carbon dynamics in a Typic Eutroferric Red Latossol under different land uses (no-till system, irrigated and non- irrigated crops, and native forest in the savanna region of Santa Helena de Goiás, Goiás State, Brazil. Samples were collected from five soil layers (0.0-0.05, 0.05-0.10, 0.10-0.20, 0.20-0.30, and 0.30-0.40 m and separated in aggregate size groups of above or below 0.25 mm. Chemical and physical

  16. Composição florística de uma comunidade savânica no Rio Grande do Norte, Nordeste do Brasil Floristic composition of a savanna community in Rio Grande do Norte, northeastern Brazil

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    Ana Cláudia Pereira de Oliveira

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available No município de Rio do Fogo foi registrada, em 1976, somente através de imagens de radar, uma comunidade de Cerrado para a qual, até então, não havia estudo in loco. Algumas questões foram elaboradas sobre essa comunidade: A região delimitada e descrita por meio de imagens de radar pode ser considerada Cerrado, do ponto de vista florístico? Qual a fitogeografia das espécies registradas nessa comunidade? Há ocorrência de espécies raras, endêmicas ou ameaçadas de extinção na composição florística dessa comunidade? Para responder a estas questões realizou-se o levantamento florístico em 400 ha, no período de agosto/2007 a setembro/2009. Os dados indicaram que das 94 espécies registradas em Rio do Fogo, 73 são associadas ao Cerrado, 69 também se distribuem na Caatinga, 60 na Floresta Atlântica, 47 na Floresta Amazônica, 14 no Pantanal e 11 no Pampa. Foram listadas pela primeira vez para o Rio Grande do Norte (RN 39 espécies; Stylosanthes gracilis Kunth (Fabaceae e Aristida laevis (Nees Kunth (Poaceae são citadas pela primeira vez para o Nordeste do Brasil. Aspilia procumbens Baker (Asteraceae apresentou distribuição restrita ao estado e insere-se na categoria criticamente em perigo; já Stilpnopappus cearensis Hubber na categoria vulnerável à extinção. Concluiu-se que essa área pode ser classificada floristicamente como pertencente ao domínio do Cerrado, podendo ser apontada como área-chave para a conservação.In the municipality of Rio do Fogo (in 1976 a savanna community was registered by radar that, until now, has not been studied in loco. Some questions were asked about this community: Is this area Cerrado, floristically? What is the phytogeography of plant species in this community? Do rare, endemic or endangered species occur in this community? To answer these questions a floristic inventory, from August 2007 to September 2009, was performed in 400 ha of this region. The data indicated that of the 94

  17. Sap flow measurements combining sap-flux density radial profiles with punctual sap-flux density measurements in oak trees (Quercus ilex and Quercus pyrenaica) - water-use implications in a water-limited savanna-

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reyes, J. Leonardo; Lubczynski1, Maciek W.

    2010-05-01

    measurements using the HFD-measured radial profiles. The standard TDP daily mean of sap-flux density was 95% higher than the 2cm equivalent of the HFD for Q. ilex and 70% higher for Q. pyrenaica. NTG-corrected TDP daily mean of sap-flux density was 34% higher than HFD for Q. ilex and 47% lower for Q. pyrenaica. Regarding sap flow measurements, the standard TDP sap flow was 81% higher than HFD sap flow for Q. ilex and 297% for Q. pyrenaica. The NTG-corrected TDP sap flow was 24% higher than HFD sap flow for Q. ilex and 23% for Q. pyrenaica. The radial correction, for TDP-NTG-corrected sap-flux density, produced sap-flow measurements in well agreement with HFD, just slightly lower (-3% Q.i. and -4% Q.p.). The TDP-HFD sap flow data acquired in dry season over the savanna type of sparsely distributed oak trees (Q. ilex & Q. pyrenaica) showed that the TDP method must be corrected for NTG and for radial variability of sap flux density in trees with sapwood thicker than 2 cm. If such corrections are not taken into consideration, the amount of accounted water used by the trees is prone to overestimation, especially for Quercus pyrenaica. The obtained results indicate also that the combination of HFD and TDP leads to an efficient and accurate operational sap flow measurement schema that is currently in the optimization stage.

  18. Biologia floral e sistema reprodutivo de Byrsonima coccolobifolia (Kunth em uma savana amazônica Floral Biology and the reproductive system of Byrsonima coccolobifolia (Kunth in an amazonian savanna

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    Rosa Mª Cordovil Benezar

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available A biologia reprodutiva de Byrsonima coccolobifolia, foi avaliada em uma população de savana do Estado de Roraima. A espécie é constituída de arbustos e arvoretas com altura inferior a 3m, de flores hermafroditas zigomorfas, pentâmeras, reunidas em inflorescências do tipo racemo terminal, produzidos em brotações novas, o cálice é composto por cinco sépalas, que apresentam um par de glândulas produtoras de óleo. A corola é formada por cinco pétalas albo-róseas e unguiculadas, o androceu é composto por dez estames com anteras de coloração amarela. A antese pode ser noturna ou diurna, estende-se por um período médio de 12 horas e as flores costumam ficar abertas e vistosas por um período adicional de 15 horas, quando se inicia a senescência. Foram registrados dois episódios de floração e o fogo parece ser um fator ambiental estimulador desta fenofase. Os visitantes florais predominantes foram abelhas das famílias Anthophoridae (Centris sp. e Xylocopa sp. e Apidae (Apis mellifera e Bombus sp.. Os resultados das polinizações controladas e o cálculo do índice de auto-incompatibilidade (ISI indicam que a espécie apresenta comportamento protogínico e é autocompatível, produzindo frutos em todos os tratamentos de autopolinização em proporções semelhantes à polinização natural, não sendo confirmada a produção de frutos apomíticos. Entretanto, os percentuais de frutos formados nos tratamentos de xenogamia foram significativamente superiores aos tratamentos de autofertilização, indicando que B. coccolobifolia apresenta um sistema reprodutivo misto com níveis elevados de alogamia e autogamia.The reproductive biology of Byrsonima coccolobifolia was evaluated in a savanna area of State of Roraima, Brazil. This is a woody species of bushes and small trees 3m tall. The flowers are hermaphrodite, pentamerous, zygomorphic, arranged in a terminal inflorescence, produced in new sprouts. Five sepals form the calyx

  19. Unsustainable fuelwood extraction from South African savannas

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Wessels, Konrad J

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Department of Global Ecology, Carnegie Institution for Science, 260 Panama Street, Stanford, CA 94305, USA 4 Centre for African Ecology, School of Animal, Plant and Environmental Sciences, University of the Witwatersrand, Private Bag 3, Johannesburg, Wits... Supplies in the Developing Countries (Forestry Paper No. 42) (Rome: Food and Agriculture Organisation) Dewees P A 1989 The woodfuel crisis reconsidered: observations on the dynamics of abundance and scarcity World Dev. 17 1159–72 Dovie D B K, Shackleton C M...

  20. Diversity of Archaea in Brazilian savanna soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Catão, E; Castro, A P; Barreto, C C; Krüger, R H; Kyaw, C M

    2013-07-01

    Although the richness of Bacteria and Fungi in Cerrado' soils has been reported, here we report, for the first time, the archaeal community in Cerrado's soils. DNA extracted from soil of two distinct vegetation types, a dense subtype of sensu strict (cerrado denso) and riverbank forest (mata de galeria), was used to amplify Archaea-specific 16S rRNA gene. All of the fragments sequenced were classified as Archaea into the phylum Thaumarchaeota, predominantly affiliated to groups I.1b and I.1c. Sequences affiliated to the group I.1a were found only in the soil from riverbank forest. Soils from 'cerrado denso' had greater Archaea richness than those from 'mata de galeria' based on the richness indexes and on the rarefaction curve. β-Diversity analysis showed significant differences between the sequences from the two soil areas studied because of their different thaumarchaeal group composition. These results provide information about the third domain of life from Cerrado soils.

  1. Farming Systems of the African Savanna

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    It is impossible to thank all those farmers, researchers, and others who have ..... Farmers using this method aim to maintain or even increase the OM content of the soil by ... (Some types of fertilizer may damage the seed or young plants if placed in ..... The structure of a system is defined by the quantitative and qualitative ...

  2. A savanna response to precipitation intensity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ryan S Berry

    Full Text Available As the atmosphere warms, precipitation events are becoming less frequent but more intense. A three-year experiment in Kruger National Park, South Africa, found that fewer, more intense precipitation events encouraged woody plant encroachment. To test whether or not these treatment responses persisted over time, here, we report results from all five years of that experiment. Grass growth, woody plant growth, total fine root number and area and hydrologic tracer uptake by grasses and woody plants were measured in six treated plots (8 m by 8 m and six control plots. Treatment effects on soil moisture were measured continuously in one treated and one control plot. During the fourth year, increased precipitation intensity treatments continued to decrease water flux in surface soils (0-10 cm, increase water flux in deeper soils (20+ cm, decrease grass growth and increase woody plant growth. Greater root numbers at 20-40 cm and greater woody plant uptake of a hydrological tracer from 45-60 cm suggested that woody plants increased growth by increasing root number and activity (but not root area in deeper soils. During the fifth year, natural precipitation events were large and intense so treatments had little effect on precipitation intensity or plant available water. Consistent with this effective treatment removal, there was no difference in grass or woody growth rates between control and treated plots, although woody plant biomass remained higher in treated than control plots due to treatment effects in the previous four years. Across the five years of this experiment, we found that 1 small increases in precipitation intensity can result in large increases in deep (20-130 cm soil water availability, 2 plant growth responses to precipitation intensity are rapid and disappear quickly, and 3 because woody plants accumulate biomass, occasional increases in precipitation intensity can result in long-term increases in woody plant biomass (i.e., shrub encroachment. While results are likely to be site-specific, they provide experimental evidence of large ecohydrological responses to small changes in precipitation intensity.

  3. Características bio-ecológicas en poblaciones de lombrices (Oligochaeta: Glossoscolecidae de una sabana natural y una protegida en los llanos centrales de Venezuela Bioecological characteristics of earthworm populations (Oligochaeta: Glossoscolecidae in a natural and a protected savanna in the central Llanos of Venezuela

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luis Hernández

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Las lombrices de tierra tienen un papel importante en el ciclado de nutrientes y el mantenimiento de la fertilidad de los suelos. En este estudio se empleo el método de extracción manual para determinar la densidad y la biomasa de las lombrices de tierra en diferentes profundidades y en diferentes estaciones, seleccionando al azar cinco monolitos de 25cm2x30cm, ubicados en un área de 90x90m en una Sabana Protegida (SP y una Sabana Natural Intervenida (SNI. Adicionalmente, se estimó la densidad de los capullos, se analizaron las clases de etapas de desarrollo y se clasificaron los individuos en categorías ecológicas. Se estimó la humedad del suelo, la capacidad de campo, la temperatura, la densidad aparente y la textura del suelo. La SP presentó mejores condiciones físicas en el suelo que la SNI, mientras que la actividad de las lombrices de tierra estuvo limitada a los meses de lluvia y se observó un patrón de migración estacional en el perfil del suelo. En la SNI sólo se observó presencia de individuos en agosto y no se encontró diferencia significativa en sus biomasas con la SP. Los sistemas estuvieron dominados por individuos jóvenes con una categoría ecológica de tipo endo-anécica pertenecientes a la familiaIn tropical savannas, the earthworm communities have a predominant role since they regulate the soil structure and dynamics of the organic matter. To study the effect on earthworm populations in two differently managed savannas, we compared the general aspects of the biology and ecology of earthworm populations from a 40 years protected savanna (SP with no fire or cattle raising at the Estación Biológica de los Llanos, Venezuela (EBLL, and a natural savanna (SNI, under normal burning and cattle raising management conditions. Sampling was carried out at the end of the dry season (April, and at the peak of the wet season (July-August. The main physical properties of soils per system were estimated. In each system, in

  4. SUPERFUND TREATABILITY CLEARINGHOUSE: INCINERATION TEST OF EXPLOSIVES CONTAMINATED SOILS AT SAVANNA ARMY DEPOT ACTIVITY, SAVANNA, ILLINOIS

    Science.gov (United States)

    The primary objective of these tests was to demonstrate the effectiveness of incineration as a decontamination method for explosives contaminated sails. A pilot-scale rotary kiln incinerator, manufactured by ThermAll, Inc., was used to treat both sandy and clayey...

  5. Identification of the wood-borer and the factors affecting its attack on Caryocar brasiliense trees in the Brazilian Savanna=Identificação do broqueador de tronco e os fatores que afetam o seu ataque em árvores de Caryocar brasiliense no cerrado brasileiro.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Germano Leão Demolin Leite

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available The objectives of this work were to identify the wood-borer of the trunk of Caryocar brasiliense Camb. (Caryocaraceae and the effects of tree size, chemical and physical soil attributes, and floristic diversity in its attack. The wood-boring caterpillar of the trunck of C. brasiliense belongs to the family Cossidae (Lepidoptera. The number of pupae and the amount of sawdust produced by the wood-borer per tree was higher in the pasture 1 of Montes Claros and pasture in Ibiracatu than in the other four areas (pastures and savanna in Montes Claros and savanna in Ibiracatu. The number of pupae and the amount of sawdust was highest in the trunks of trees with diameters having a breast height (DBH more than 30 cm. This may explain the severity of attack in the areas mentioned above, which contain a higher percentage of plants with DBH> 30 cm. The soil properties also positively associate with higher attack of the wood-borer on trees when the soil is rich in potassium, calcium, magnesium, sum of bases, capacity of cationic exchange, and organic matter, while there was a negative correlation between attack and fine sand content. Systems with less floristic diversity, particularly trees of other species, may concentrate the attack of the wood-borer in the trunks of C. Brasiliense trees. Os objetivos deste trabalho foram identificar o broqueador do tronco de Caryocar brasiliense Camb. (Caryocaraceae e os efeitos de tamanho de árvore, atributos químico-físicos do solo e da diversidade florística em seu ataque. A lagarta broqueadora do tronco de C. brasiliense pertence à família Cossidae (Lepidoptera. O número de pupas e de serragem do broqueador por árvore foi maior na pastagem (1 em Montes Claros e pastagem em Ibiracatu do que nas outras quatro áreas (pastagens e cerrado em Montes Claros e cerrado em Ibiracatu. O número de pupas e da quantidade de serragem do broqueador foi maior em árvores cujo diâmetro de tronco na altura do peito (DAB foi

  6. Características físicas, químicas e conteúdo de água em solos convertidos de savana para plantio de Acacia mangium. = Physical and chemical characteristics and soil humidity by converting savanna to Acacia mangium crop, Roraima State, Brazil.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Ivonilde Leitão de Souza

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Os quarenta mil quilômetros quadrados de savana (cerrado em Roraima vêm sendo substituídos por agricultura, pecuária e florestamento, portanto, objetivou-se avaliar o efeito da conversão da savana nativa para plantios de Acacia mangium, com diferentes idades, em diferentes classes de solos e profundidades dos solos nas características químicas, físicas e no teor de água do solo. O trabalho foi conduzido em duas fazendas do Empreendimento Ouro Verde Agrosilvopastoril Ltda, no município do Cantá, RR, em plantios de Acacia mangium com até quatro anos de implantação comparado a condição natural (savana. As áreas situam-se em solos da classe Latossolo Amarelo distrófico (Fazenda Tuquinha e Argissolo Amarelo distrófico (Fazenda Garimpeira e as variáveis foram avaliadas nas profundidades de 0 - 30; 30 - 60 e 60 - 90 cm. As variáveis analisadas foram: pH, bases trocáveis, alumínio trocável, H+ + Al3+, fósforo, sódio, Matéria Orgânica do Solo (MOS, granulometria, densidade do solo e teor de água no solo. Em geral, os solos são de baixa fertilidade natural, verificando-se que a implantação de Acaciamangium não apresentou alterações químicas positivas no solo, revelando uma tendência de aumento da umidade do solo coma idade de plantio de Acacia mangium. = The forty thousand square kilometers of savannah (cerrado in Roraima State, Brazil, are being replaced by agriculture and forestry. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of native savanna conversion to plantationsof Acacia mangium at different ages, classes and soil depths on chemical and physical attribute and water content of soil. Thisresearch was done in two farms of Ouro Verde Agrossilvopastoril Ltda., in the city of Cantá – RR, with up to four year oldAcacia mangium crops at Tuquinha`s farm and at Garimpeira`s farm, and in natural savanna conditions. The collected samples were of dystrophic yellow Latosol (Tuquinha farm and dystrophic yellow

  7. Breeding sites of drosophilids (Diptera in the Brazilian Savanna. I. Fallen fruits of Emmotum nitens (Icacinaceae, Hancornia speciosa (Apocynaceae and Anacardium humile (Anacardiaceae Sítios de criação de drosofilídeos (Diptera no bioma Cerrado. I. Frutos caídos de Emmotum nitens (Icacinaceae, Hancornia speciosa (Apocynaceae e Anacardium humile (Anacardiaceae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francisco Roque

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available In this study, drosophilids that bred in fruits of three common plant species of the Brazilian Savanna were investigated: Emmotum nitens, Hancornia speciosa and Anacardium humile, along with the temporal and spatial distribution of these insects among fruits obtained from six individuals of E. nitens. Fallen fruits were collected in natural environments, placed on moist sand in individual containers and all drosophilids that emerged from these resources during 15 days were collected, counted and identified. From 3,651 fruits collected (3,435 of E. nitens, 179 of A. humile and 37 of H. speciosa 4,541 flies emerged and were classified into 19 species of Drosophilidae. Their distribution was unequal among the three resources, also over time, and among the six individuals of E. nitens. Such fluctuations probably reflect the availability of resources in time and space and probably the action of selective factors such as larval competition.Neste estudo, são investigados os drosofilídeos que se criam em frutos de três espécies de plantas comuns do Cerrado brasileiro: Emmotum nitens, Hancornia speciosa e Anacardium humile, juntamente com a distribuição temporal e espacial desses insetos entre os frutos obtidos de seis indivíduos de E. nitens. Frutos recolhidos sobre a serrapilheira, em ambientes naturais, foram mantidos no laboratório e os drosofilídeos que deles emergiram foram contados e identificados. Dos 3.651 frutos coletados (3.435 de E. nitens, 179 de A. humile e 37 de H. speciosa emergiram 4.541 drosofilídeos, classificados em 19 espécies. A distribuição dessas espécies foi desigual entre os três tipos de recursos, ao longo do tempo, e também entre os seis indivíduos de E. nitens. Essas flutuações refletem a disponibilidade dos recursos no tempo e no espaço, e provavelmente a ação de forças seletivas como a competição entre as larvas.

  8. Resposta do feijão-caupi as lâminas de irrigação e as doses de fósforo no cerrado de Roraima Response of cowpea to water levels and phosphate fertilizer on the savanna of Roraima

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gabriela Almeida Oliveira

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available O objetivo do trabalho foi estudar o comportamento do feijão-caupi (Vigna ungüiculata (L. Walp. cv. BRS Novaera sob quatro lâminas de água (273; 257; 241 e 187 mm e doses de fósforo (0; 70; 140; 210 kg ha-1 de P2O5, aplicados na forma de superfosfato triplo, em Boa Vista, Roraima. O delineamento experimental adotado foi o de blocos ao acaso, no esquema de parcelas subdivididas com quatro repetições. As parcelas foram constituídas pelas lâminas de água e as sub parcelas pelas doses de fósforo, resultando em 16 tratamentos. A irrigação foi realizada por um sistema convencional de aspersão, montado no campo segundo o sistema de "aspersão em linha". As massas seca da parte aérea e de 100 grãos foram influenciadas significativamente pela interação entre lâminas de água e doses de fósforo, enquanto o número de grãos por vagem e o comprimento da vagem foram influenciados somente pelas doses de fósforo. A dose de máxima eficiência econômica foi de 89,45 kg de P2O5, com produtividade de 1.306 kg ha-1.This work was carried out to evaluate the effect of irrigation depth and phosphate fertilizer (0; 70; 140; 210 kg ha-1 de P2O5 on yield and production components of cowpea (Vigna unguiculata L. Walp cv. Novaera at the Savanna of Roraima, Brazil. The experimental design was arranged in a completely randomized block in split-plot and four replications. Irrigation depths were applied through a sprinkler line source system. The principal treatments constituted on the depths of irrigation and the secondary treatments by the phosphate fertilizer. Significant effects (p < 0.05 of the depth of irrigation and phosphate fertilizer interaction with aerial mass production and mass of 100 grains were observed. The number of grains per pods and size of pod were affected by the phosphate fertilizer only. The highest economical yield (1,306 kg ha-1 was obtained by 89.45 kg of P2O5.

  9. Sobrevivência e crescimento de seis espécies arbóreas submetidas a quatro tratamentos em área minerada no cerrado Survival and growth of six tree species under four treatments on a mined areain the Brazilian savanna

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lucas de Carvalho Ramos Silva

    2008-08-01

    Full Text Available Entre as várias atividades antrópicas desenvolvidas no Cerrado, a mineração é uma das que provocam significativos danos. A regeneração natural da vegetação em áreas mineradas é extremamente lenta e, portanto, a intervenção em lavras esgotadas faz-se necessária. O presente trabalho objetiva avaliar a sobrevivência e o crescimento de mudas de seis espécies arbóreas, submetidas a quatro tratamentos, usadas na revegetação de uma cascalheira em Brasília-DF. Os quatro tratamentos consistiram da combinação da utilização de cobertura morta sobre as covas e/ou o plantio de árvores em substrato coberto por Stylosanthes spp. Um tratamento controle, localizado em área adjacente não minerada, foi estabelecido para efeitos comparativos. Os resultados indicam que as mudas arbóreas implantadas na área minerada apresentaram maior sobrevivência e crescimento do que as mesmas espécies plantadas na área controle não minerada. Na área minerada não foram verificadas diferenças significativas no desenvolvimento das espécies em função dos tratamentos aplicados - cobertura morta sobre covas e/ou estrato herbáceo sobre a superfície minerada.Among many human activities developed in areas of Brazilian savanna, mining is one that causes significative damage to the environment. Natural sucession on such sites is extremely slow and therefore revegetation works are necessary. This work aims to evaluate survival and growth of six tree species under four treatments grown on an exploited gravel mine in the Brazilian Federal District. The four treatments were drawn from the combination of mulching around tree seedlings and the establishment of Stylosanthes spp on the area surface. A control was established on a nearby unexploited for comparison reason. Results show a higher survival rate and growth of tree seedlings established on the exploited site than on the control-site which kept intact soil. There were no significant differences for

  10. Estrutura da vegetação arbórea de um remanescente ecotonal urbano floresta-savana no Parque do Sabiá, em Uberlândia, MG Tree vegetation structure in an urban forest-savanna ecotone remnant, southeastern Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Frederico Augusto Guimarães Guilherme

    2007-04-01

    Full Text Available Neste estudo, avaliou-se a estrutura do componente arbóreo de manchas de vegetação correspondentes à Floresta Estacional Semidecidual e dois cerradões, inseridas em um remanescente urbano composto também por uma mancha de mata de brejo. O levantamento compreendeu 1,32 ha, onde todos os indivíduos com perímetro à altura do peito > 5 cm foram amostrados. Registraram-se 141 espécies, distribuídas em 46 famílias botânicas, com diversidade de Shannon de 3,99. Fabaceae apresentou a maior riqueza de espécies no levantamento, corroborando o padrão encontrado em outros estudos sobre o bioma Cerrado. Maprounea guianensis teve os maiores valores relativos de densidade, freqüência e dominância no remanescente. A floresta estacional apresentou a maior riqueza florística e espécies características dessa formação, em comparação com demais pesquisas. Hirtella glandulosa apresentou o maior valor de importância no cerradão 2, o que evidencia a existência de um solo distrófico nessa fisionomia. Características estruturais similares entre o cerradão 2 e a floresta estacional e diversidade florística significativamente maior no cerradão 2 do que no cerradão 1, além da presença de espécies típicas de matas de brejo e floresta estacional no cerradão 2, evidenciavam áreas de transição no remanescente. No cerradão 1 foram registrados poucos indivíduos arbóreos nas menores classes de diâmetro. Isso provavelmente se deva às perturbações antrópicas constantes e variadas, indicando a necessidade de ações preventivas para a conservação e manejo desse patrimônio biológico.The study evaluated the tree component structure of vegetation fragments consisted of semideciduous forest, two woody savannas (cerradão, inserted in an urban forest remnant, also consisting of a fragment of swamp forest. The survey comprised 1.32 hectares, where all trees with ³ 5 cm perimeter at breast height were recorded. A total of 141 species

  11. Seasonal variation of soluble carbohydrates and starch in Echinolaena inflexa, a native grass species from the Brazilian savanna, and in the invasive grass Melinis minutiflora Variações sazonais de carboidratos solúveis e amido em Echinolaena inflexa, uma espécie nativa do cerrado, e na gramínea invasora Melinis minutiflora

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Souza

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Echinolaena inflexa (Poir. Chase is an abundant C3 grass species with high biomass production in the Brazilian savanna (cerrado; Melinis minutiflora Beauv. is an African C4 forage grass widespread in cerrado and probably displacing some native herbaceous species. In the present work, we analysed seasonally the content and composition of soluble carbohydrates, the starch amounts and the above-ground biomass (phytomass of E. inflexa and M. minutiflora plants harvested in two transects at 5 and 130 m from the border in a restrict area of cerrado at the Biological Reserve and Experimental Station of Mogi-Guaçu (SP, Brazil. Results showed that water soluble carbohydrates and starch amounts from the shoots of both species varied according to the time of the year, whilst in the underground organs, variations were observed mainly in relation to the transects. Marked differences in the pattern of the above-ground biomass production between these two grasses relative to their location in the Reserve were also observed, with two peaks of the invasive species (July and January at the Reserve border. The differences in carbohydrate accumulation, partitioning and composition of individual sugars concerning time of the year and location in the Reserve were more related to the annual growth cycle of both grasses and possibly to specific physiological responses of M. minutiflora to disturbed environments in the Reserve border.Echinolaena inflexa (Poir. Chase é uma gramínea C3 muito abundante em áreas de cerrado e com alta produção de biomassa. Melinis minutiflora Beauv. é uma gramínea C4 de origem africana introduzida no Brasil para fins forrageiros, que se espalhou amplamente por áreas de cerrado, provavelmente deslocando espécies nativas. No presente trabalho, o conteúdo e a composição de carboidratos solúveis, o teor de amido e a biomassa aérea foram analisados sazonalmente em plantas de E. inflexa e M. minutiflora coletadas em dois transectos

  12. Mixed farming : scope and constraints in West African savanna

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Slingerland, M.

    2000-01-01

    Since colonial times the crop livestock integration concept has been a leading development model in francophone West Africa. So far, it has failed in certain aspects, such as cultivation of fodder crops, intensification of cereal production through animal traction, and sedentarisation of

  13. Savanna ecosystem project - progress report 1975/1976

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Huntley, BJ

    1977-03-01

    Full Text Available the period (684 mm) was slightly above the long-term average of 630 mm. Primary production and phytomass were measured using harvest techniques for above ground herbage, C02 gas exchange, and destructive sampling of woody plants for the determination...

  14. Productivity of Maize hybrid maturity classes in Savanna ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    With the continued development and release of such hybrids, there is need to continue to screen them in order to ascertain their potential productivity in different agro-ecologies. A study was, therefore, carried out between June and October 2011, to screen nine hybrid varieties of maize for growth and yield potentials in two ...

  15. Persistent Acacia savannas replace Mediterranean sclerophyllous forests in South America

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wouw, van de P.; Echeverria, C.; Rey-Benayas, J.M.; Holmgren, M.

    2011-01-01

    Mediterranean ecosystems are global hotspots of biodiversity threaten by human disturbances. Growing evidence indicates that regeneration of Mediterranean forests can be halted under certain circumstances and that successional stages can become notoriously persistent. The Mediterranean

  16. Understanding ecohydrological connectivity in savannas: A system dynamics modeling approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ecohydrological connectivity is a system-level property that results from the linkages in the networks of water transport through ecosystems, by which feedback effects and other emergent system behaviors may be generated. We created a systems dynamic model that represents primary ecohydrological net...

  17. effect of climate on yam tuberization in the guinea savanna

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Osondu

    The response of yam tuber development to its micro-climate was monitored at the National. Centre for Agricultural .... when the sky isusually overcast by a low cumulus cloud thus blocking the earth surface from direct impact of solar radiation.

  18. Teachers like savanna: every rain the splendor of spring

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andréa Inês Goldschmidt

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Field of stages is an important site when we think of teacher training, if need be stimulated reflections involving the teaching identity and praxis. One way to configure these reflections is to use metaphors. Against this background, it was proposed to the Degree Course in Biological Sciences trainees perform the reading of the text of Maria Socorro Lucena Lima entitled "The stage at the undergraduate and the metaphor of the tree." After they built the tree of Supervised I, as an object of study and reflection; however, taking into account the cerrado biome. Listed were six forest species, to be built and presented the associations made between the text read, the reflections and the biological characteristics of the species. Students brought important buildings such as the uniqueness of each species and individual experience of each, revealing that "being a teacher" historically constituted. It was appointed by the participants of the cerrado soil of adversity and the profession, reflecting on the difficulties and teaching devaluation and the importance of this professional in society. We can conceive of students as future professionals aware of their practice as a reflective practitioner.

  19. Savanna vegetation-fire-climate relationships differ among continents

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Lehmann, CER

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available effects have the potential to be influential agents of natural selection (25). Imbalances of expec- tation and reward may therefore have broad effects on health and physiology in humans and may represent a powerful evolutionary force in nature. References... considerable effort to the identification of universal relationships to de- scribe the structure and function of biomes (16). However, it has not been clear whether such re- lationships exist. Any such relationships may be confounded by the unique evolutionary...

  20. An ecological and phytogeographic study of northern Surinam savannas

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Donselaar, van J.

    1965-01-01

    Geology and soils in general Surinam is situated at the northern edge of the very old and stable Guiana shield. Six-sevenths of the country’s surface are occupied by formations belonging to the shield and designated together as the basal complex. However, the Roraima formation does not belong to the

  1. Biochemical characterization of selected plant species from Brazilian Savannas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Samantha Salomão Caramori

    2004-06-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this work was to analyze and quantify the presence of antinutritional compounds such as lectins and trypsin-like inhibitors, polyphenols and tannins, and enzymatic activity of peroxidases and proteases in the seeds of Annona crassiflora Mart. (araticum, Hymenaea courbaril L. var. courbaril (jatobá, Plathymenia reticulata Benth. (vinhático, Zanthoxylum rhoifolium Lam. (maminha de porca, Apeiba tibourbou Aubl. (pau jangada, Salacia crassiflora Mart G. Don. (bacupari, and Sclerolobium paniculatum Vog. (carvoeiro. The results suggested that these plants could be used as new source of food.O Cerrado é constituído por inúmeras espécies vegetais com potencial econômico, as quais são utilizadas para os mais variados fins, como medicinal e nutricional. O objetivo deste trabalho foi analisar e quantificar a presença de atividade enzimática de peroxidases e proteases e fatores antinutricionais, como lectinas e inibidores de proteases, além de polifenóis e taninos em algumas espécies nativas do Cerrado. O material vegetal utilizado foram sementes de Annona crassiflora Mart. (araticum, Hymenaea courbaril L. var. courbaril (jatobá, Plathymenia reticulata Benth. (vinhático, Zanthoxylum rhoifolium Lam. (maminha de porca, Apeiba tibourbou Aubl. (pau jangada, Salacia crassiflora (Mart. G. Don. (bacupari e Sclerolobium paniculatum Vog. (carvoeiro, coletadas na cidade de Goiânia e municípios de Jataí e Caldas Novas, estado de Goiás. O uso potencial destas plantas e suas enzimas na indústria de alimentos, poderia resultar em aplicações ao aparecimento de novos produtos a partir das matérias-primas tradicionais, além do uso de novas fontes de alimentos.

  2. Farming Systems of the African Savanna: A Continent in Crisis ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    Farmers in the parts of Africa where population growth is near, or has exceeded, the carrying capacity of the land at current technological levels face a serious crisis. This crisis is the result of the breakdown of traditional farming systems. The consequences are environmental deterioration on a massive scale, widespread ...

  3. Computing the net primary productivity for a Savanna- Dominated ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This is so because of the coupling of water vapour release and CO2 uptake during ... Hydrologic and land-cover data, together with stable isotope ratio ... and dD, and data from the global network of isotopes in precipitation (GNIP) are used to ...

  4. productivity of maize hybrid maturity classes in savanna agro

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Prof. Adipala Ekwamu

    11, ... it requires fertile, well-drained loam soil, well- ... This was equivalent to 320 g per ... Agronomic characteristics of hybrid varieties of maize used in the field experiment in ... moisture content, at which figure it is believed to ..... Textural class.

  5. Humans and elephants as treefall drivers in African savannas

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Mograbi, PJ

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available and composition refl ect the ecological context of multiple spatial and temporal pro- cesses (Watt 1947, Vanak et al. 2012, Scholtz et al. 2014), complex interactive eff ects with other species (Dean et al. 1999, Sankaran et al. 2005), humans (Turner et al.... Southern African fi re regimes as revealed by remote sensing. – Int. J. Wildland Fire 19: 861 – 878. Archibald, S. et al. 2013. Defi ning pyromes and global syndromes of fi re regimes. – Proc. Natl Acad. Sci. USA 110: 6442 – 6447. Asner, G. P...

  6. Savanna woody vegetation classification – now in 3-D

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Fisher, JT

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR)-Meraka Institute, P.O. Box 395, Pretoria, 0001, South Africa 5Department of Global Ecology, Carnegie Institution for Science, 260 Panama Street, Stanford, CA, 94305, USA *corresponding author, jolenefisher...

  7. Computing the Net Primary Productivity for a Savanna- Dominated ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    komla

    2003-05-19

    May 19, 2003 ... productivity of CO2 (between 1–2% per year) continues, a doubling of the CO2 ... The work ... Numerous isotope mass balance equa-tions are proposed to ..... Terrestrial ecoregions of the world: a new map of life on earth.

  8. Vegetation structure characteristics and relationships of Kalahari woodlands and savannas

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Privette, JL

    2004-03-01

    Full Text Available modeling has become widespread (e.g., Potter et al., 1993, 1998; Sellers et al., 1996). Nevertheless, knowledge of vegetation canopy struc- ture remains incomplete in many remote areas, such as sub-Saharan Africa. First, comparatively small changes... 929 460 Colophospermum mopane woodland with patches of Terminalia sericea thicket Harry Oppenheimer Okavango Research Centre; Measurements were 3km east of a permanent flux tower 23.591E Okwa River Crossing, Botswana 22.411S 1089 407 Open Kalahari...

  9. Determinants of patchiness of woody vegetation in an African savanna

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Veldhuis, Michiel P.; Rozen-Rechels, David; le Roux, Elizabeth; Cromsigt, Joris P.G.M.; Berg, Matheus P.; Olff, Han

    2016-01-01

    How is woody vegetation patchiness affected by rainfall, fire and large herbivore biomass? Can we predict woody patchiness and cover over large-scale environmental gradients? We quantified variation in local patchiness as the lacunarity of woody cover on satellite-derived images. Using Random Forest

  10. Pleistocene climatic changes drive diversification across a tropical savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Potter, Sally; Xue, Alexander T; Bragg, Jason G; Rosauer, Dan F; Roycroft, Emily J; Moritz, Craig

    2018-01-01

    Spatial responses of species to past climate change depend on both intrinsic traits (climatic niche breadth, dispersal rates) and the scale of climatic fluctuations across the landscape. New capabilities in generating and analysing population genomic data, along with spatial modelling, have unleashed our capacity to infer how past climate changes have shaped populations, and by extension, complex communities. Combining these approaches, we uncover lineage diversity across four codistributed lizards from the Australian Monsoonal Tropics and explore how varying climatic tolerances interact with regional climate history to generate common vs. disparate responses to late Pleistocene change. We find more divergent spatial structuring and temporal demographic responses in the drier Kimberley region compared to the more mesic and consistently suitable Top End. We hypothesize that, in general, the effects of species' traits on sensitivity to climate fluctuation will be more evident in climatically marginal regions. If true, this points to the need in climatically marginal areas to craft more species-(or trait)-specific strategies for persistence under future climate change. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  11. Characteristics of African Savanna Biomes for Determining Woody Cover

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set includes the soil and vegetation characteristics, herbivore estimates, and precipitation measurement data for the 854 sites described and analyzed in...

  12. Intercropping soybean and maize in a derived savanna ecology ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Compared to sole soybean, intercropping soybean and maize on flat and ridge reduced yields by 1.0 –29.1% and 29.4 - 40.2% respectively. In maize, intercropping on flat and ridge reduced yields by 13.2 - 25.2% and 24.8 - 43.5% respectively. Planting sole soybean on ridge enhanced mean yield by 18.6% as compared to ...

  13. The spectral changes of deforestation in the Brazilian tropical savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trancoso, Ralph; Sano, Edson E; Meneses, Paulo R

    2015-01-01

    The Cerrado is a biome in Brazil that is experiencing the most rapid loss in natural vegetation. The objective of this study was to analyze the changes in the spectral response in the red, near infrared (NIR), middle infrared (MIR), and normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) when native vegetation in the Cerrado is deforested. The test sites were regions of the Cerrado located in the states of Bahia, Minas Gerais, and Mato Grosso. For each region, a pair of Landsat Thematic Mapper (TM) scenes from 2008 (before deforestation) and 2009 (after deforestation) was compared. A set of 1,380 samples of deforested polygons and an equal number of samples of native vegetation have their spectral properties statistically analyzed. The accuracy of deforestation detections was also evaluated using high spatial resolution imagery. Results showed that the spectral data of deforested areas and their corresponding native vegetation were statistically different. The red band showed the highest difference between the reflectance data from deforested areas and native vegetation, while the NIR band showed the lowest difference. A consistent pattern of spectral change when native vegetation in the Cerrado is deforested was identified regardless of the location in the biome. The overall accuracy of deforestation detections was 97.75%. Considering both the marked pattern of spectral changes and the high deforestation detection accuracy, this study suggests that deforestation in Cerrado can be accurately monitored, but a strong seasonal and spatial variability of spectral changes might be expected.

  14. Quantifying Savanna Woody Cover in the Field and on Historical ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    jed1z

    ... mapping woody cover on such imagery in bush encroachment studies are the use of traditional pixel-based ... cover by testing it against detailed field validation data. We then assess ..... Mexico', Remote Sensing of Environment, vol. 93, pp.

  15. Characteristics of African Savanna Biomes for Determining Woody Cover

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — ABSTRACT: This data set includes the soil and vegetation characteristics, herbivore estimates, and precipitation measurement data for the 854 sites described and...

  16. Project 11. Cowpea - Cereals Systems Improvement in the Dry Savannas

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1998-01-01

    The research agenda of the IITA is subdivided into a portfolio of 16 projects (Annex 1), around which these annual reports are prepared. These projects address different aspects of attaining sustainable increases in productivity of dominant farming systems and utilization practices in the various agroecologies of Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). Research and training activities carried out in the 16 projects are being implemented together with national program partners in order to increase the well-being of poor people in SSA through higher levels of food production, better income and nutritional status, and reduced drudgery - particularly for women. Additionally IITA serves as the convening centre for the Ecoregional Program for the Humid and Sub Humid Tropics of Sub-Saharan Africa (EPHTA) and the Systemwide Project on Integrated Pest Management (SP-IPM). The institute-wide log frame (Annex 2) shows the expected contribution of each project to the overall institute goal, with the specific project log frame presented in Annex 3. Highlights from all these projects can be found in Annex 4, which thus provides an illustrative overview of IITA's research activities and achievements of the year. Annex 5 shows all the agroecological zones of sub-saharan Africa in which IITA conducts research. The project management arrangement for implementing IITA's research agenda is relatively new, and continues to evolve from a divisional/program structure. In earlier years, detailed research outputs and achievements were reported in divisional reports; this is the third year that implementation of IITA's research agenda is being presented in individual project reports. To satisfy the continuing needs of disciplinary groups in partner and other interested institutions, portions from the individual project reports will be collated into subject matter reports corresponding to current research divisions -Crop improvement, Plant Health Management, and Resource and Crop Management

  17. The reproductive lifespan of Onchocerca volvulus in West African savanna

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    A.P. Plaisier (Anton); G.J. van Oortmarssen (Gerrit); J.H.F. Remme (Jan); J.D.F. Habbema (Dik)

    1991-01-01

    markdownabstractAbstract The epidemiological model ONCHOSIM — a model and computer simulation program for the transmission and control of onchocerciasis — has been used to determine the range of plausible values for the reproductive lifespan of Onchocerca volvulus. Model predictions based on

  18. Savanna ecosystem project - progress report 1974/75

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Hirst, SM

    1975-12-01

    Full Text Available The period under review was devoted essentially to a pilot study of the Burked ecosystem, which aimed at an initial, albeit crude, quantitative appraisal of the total system to define the overall structure and the most important energy and material...

  19. Vascular epiphyte vegetation in rocky savannas of southeastern Brazil

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Alves, R. J. V.; Kolbek, Jiří; Becker, J.

    2008-01-01

    Roč. 26, 1-2 (2008), s. 101-117 ISSN 0107-055X Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : epiphytic communities * campo rupestre * Minas Gerais Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 0.194, year: 2008

  20. Dinâmica físico-hídrica de uma toposseqüência de solos sob Savana Florestada (Cerradão em Assis, SP Soil water dynamics in a toposequence under Savanna Woodland (Cerradão in Assis, SP, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos Eduardo Pinto Juhász

    2006-06-01

    ção espacial do mosaico vegetacional.The aim of this study was to characterize the morphological, physical and hydraulic soil properties in a toposequence under native plant cover in a permanent observation plot of 320 x 320 m installed in the Assis Ecological Station, São Paulo State, Brazil. The plot is covered by a remnant Savanna Woodland (Cerradão vegetation of the southern border zone of the great Cerrado domain. The bi-dimensional geometry (horizontal and vertical of the soil horizons in a toposequence provided details on the soil morphology. The soil water dynamics in the native plants environment was studied through determination of the soil-water retention curves as well as soil particle-size distribution, and saturated soil hydraulic conductivity using the Guelph permeameter. Soil moisture was measured in situ using a WCR sensor. Soil moisture and rainfall distribution were monitored from November 2003 to November 2004. The soils were classified, from the summit down to the footslope, as Rhodic Haplustox, Typic Haplustox and Epiaquic Haplustult. The high clay content in the subsurface horizon of the Epiaquic Haplustult, when compared to the Oxisols with greater sand content, determines less drainage, greater water retention and lower hydraulic conductivity. The soil moisture in this layer never attained the saturation during the study period. Soil water dynamics were influenced by relief conditions, as evidenced by the continuous lateral color transition, soil texture and structure, and by rainfall. At the soil surface, the soil moisture oscillation is closely related to the rain events. In the subsurface, this effect is less intense, and lagged in time. The water availability along the toposequence is limited in the dry season and in part of the wet season. The floristic characteristics of the forest formation and its mosaic distribution in the plot can be explained by the seasonal water availability.

  1. PHYTOSOCIOLOGY OF SOWN PASTURE WEEDS UNDER TWO LEVELS OF DEGRADATION IN BRAZILIAN SAVANNA AREAS, MATO GROSSO DO SUL STATE, BRAZIL FITOSSOCIOLOGIA DE PLANTAS DANINHAS DE PASTAGENS CULTIVADAS SOB DOIS NÍVEIS DE DEGRADAÇÃO EM CERRADO, NO MATO GROSSO DO SUL

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adriana Guglieri-Caporal

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available

    Cultivated pastures, in general, go through a decline process, associated with the occurrence of weeds, whose successful management begins with the survey of species and their biology. This study aimed to carry out phytosociological surveys, during the rainy and dry seasons, in two pastures cultivated with Brachiaria (Urochloa spp., with cattle (AI and without cattle (AII, in Cerrado (Brazilian savanna areas of the Mato Grosso do Sul State, Brazil. The occurrence of 104 weedy herbaceous and subshrubby Phanerogams species was recorded. The families with the highest number of species were Fabaceae (23 species, Poaceae (16, and Asteraceae (15. Hemicryptophytes predominate with 41% of the species. The species with the highest importance value and relative coverage are B. decumbens and Sida rhombifolia, in AI, and B. brizantha and Desmodium incanum, in AII, plus Paspalum notatum, in both pastures. The Shannon diversity index was 4.19 and 4.43 nats, for AI and AII, respectively, indicating considerable weed species richness. The floristic dissimilarity index between AI and AII, obtained from the Euclidian

  2. Non-overlap of hosts used by three congeneric and sympatric loranthaceous mistletoe species in an Amazonian savanna: host generalization to extreme specialization Não-sobreposição de hospedeiros utilizados por três espécies de ervas-de-passarinho lorantáceas congêneres e simpátricas em uma savana Amazônica: generalização pelo hospedeiroà extrema especialização

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodrigo Ferreira Fadini

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Two main hypotheses predominate in the literature on mistletoe-host specificity: (1 mistletoes are only likely to specialize on plant species on which they are frequently deposited; and (2 compatibility between mistletoes and plant species is a prerequisite for mistletoe-host parasitism. I explored these hypotheses by studying the seed deposition patterns and mistletoe-host compatibility in populations of three congeneric and sympatric mistletoe species of the genus Psittacanthus (P. biternatus, P. eucalyptifolius and P. plagiophyllus - Loranthaceae. I recorded the presence or absence of these mistletoe species in 15 tree species in a savanna patch in Amazonia. Among the five tree species that I found to be potential hosts (at least one tree individual infected, I also recorded if they had at least one mistletoe seed of any species attached to their branches. Finally, I planted seeds of all mistletoe species on the same individual trees in various hosts and non-host species and recorded seed survivorship and seedling establishment within 7 (P. plagiophyllus to 12 months (P. biternatus and P. eucalyptifolius after planting. There was no overlap among trees used as hosts by the three Psittacanthus species. Th e most specialized mistletoe species occurred in different host tree species with low relative abundance at the study site (Psittacanthus eucalyptifolius on Vatairea macrocarpa (Benth. Ducke, and P. plagiophyllus on Anacardium occidentale L.. Mistletoe-host compatibility, and not seed deposition patterns, was the factor most likely to explain patterns of host use by Psittacanthus species at this study site.Duas hipóteses principais predominam na literatura sobre a especificidade entre ervas-de-passarinho e hospedeiros: (1 ervas-de-passarinho só poderão se especializar em espécies de plantas em que elas são frequentemente depositadas; e (2 compatibilidade entre as ervas-depassarinho e as espécies de plantas é um prerequisito para o

  3. Spectral variability within species and its effects on savanna tree species discrimination

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Cho, Moses A

    2009-07-01

    Full Text Available . Smith, and P. E. Johnson, "Spectral mixture modeling: a new analysis of rock and soil types at the Viking Lander 1 site.," Journal of Geophysical Research, vol. 98 B8, pp. 8098-8112, 1986. [2] F. A. Kruse, A. B. Lefkoff, J. W. Boardman, K. B...

  4. Water requirement and irrigation schedule for tomato in northern guinea savanna zone, Nigeria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ibraheem Alhassan

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Assessment of water requirement and irrigation schedule for tomato with the support of FAO-CROPWAT simulation model was carried out for Yola, Nigeria with the aim of planning irrigation schedules for tomato and develop recommendations for improve irrigation practices. The climatic data for 2012/2013 and soil properties of the study area were input into the program. Tomato crop properties were updated by the FAO data and three irrigation intervals were tested (7 and 10 days irrigation intervals and irrigation schedule of 10 days interval during initial and development stage and 6 days interval at mid and late season stages of tomato crop. The simulated results analysis for tomato according to the irrigation schedule showed that highest yield reduction of 16.2% was recorded with 10 days irrigation interval treatment and the least of 0.4% with irrigation interval of 10 days at first two growth stages and 6 days at last two stages. FAO-CROPWAT 8.0 can be used in planning proper irrigation schedule for tomato in Yola, Nigeria.

  5. Land degradation in the Sudan Savanna of Ghana: A case study in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Land degradation in the area is the result of interaction between the physical and human environments. Physical environmental characteristics influencing land degradation include soil texture, topography and rainfall. The soils in the study area are developed over granite and Birrimian phyllite. In the granitic areas soil ...

  6. Canopy structure in savannas along a moisture gradient on Kalahari sands

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Scholes, RJ

    2004-03-01

    Full Text Available .07 3 Brachystegia spiciformis 56.3 25.3 11.85 0.76 3 Schinzophyton rautennii 90.0 49.8 8.08 0.93 4 Bauhinia petersiana 42.2 39.3 11.32 1.17 6 Pterocarpus angolensis 57.8 29.3 12.15 0.31 6 Baikieia plurijuga 45.2 21.7 11.05 1.70 6 Baphia massaiensis 79...

  7. Seasonal Effects in a Lake Sediment Archaeal Community of the Brazilian Savanna

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thiago Rodrigues

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The Cerrado is a biome that corresponds to 24% of Brazil’s territory. Only recently microbial communities of this biome have been investigated. Here we describe for the first time the diversity of archaeal communities from freshwater lake sediments of the Cerrado in the dry season and in the transition period between the dry and rainy seasons, when the first rains occur. Gene libraries were constructed, using Archaea-specific primers for the 16S rRNA and amoA genes. Analysis revealed marked differences between the archaeal communities found in the two seasons. I.1a and I.1c Thaumarchaeota were found in greater numbers in the transition period, while MCG Archaea was dominant on the dry season. Methanogens were only found in the dry season. Analysis of 16S rRNA sequences revealed lower diversity on the transition period. We detected archaeal amoA sequences in both seasons, but there were more OTUs during the dry season. These sequences were within the same cluster as Nitrosotalea devanaterra’s amoA gene. The principal coordinate analysis (PCoA test revealed significant differences between samples from different seasons. These results provide information on archaeal diversity in freshwater lake sediments of the Cerrado and indicates that rain is likely a factor that impacts these communities.

  8. Seasonal effects in a lake sediment archaeal community of the Brazilian Savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodrigues, Thiago; Catão, Elisa; Bustamante, Mercedes M C; Quirino, Betania F; Kruger, Ricardo H; Kyaw, Cynthia M

    2014-01-01

    The Cerrado is a biome that corresponds to 24% of Brazil's territory. Only recently microbial communities of this biome have been investigated. Here we describe for the first time the diversity of archaeal communities from freshwater lake sediments of the Cerrado in the dry season and in the transition period between the dry and rainy seasons, when the first rains occur. Gene libraries were constructed, using Archaea-specific primers for the 16S rRNA and amoA genes. Analysis revealed marked differences between the archaeal communities found in the two seasons. I.1a and I.1c Thaumarchaeota were found in greater numbers in the transition period, while MCG Archaea was dominant on the dry season. Methanogens were only found in the dry season. Analysis of 16S rRNA sequences revealed lower diversity on the transition period. We detected archaeal amoA sequences in both seasons, but there were more OTUs during the dry season. These sequences were within the same cluster as Nitrosotalea devanaterra's amoA gene. The principal coordinate analysis (PCoA) test revealed significant differences between samples from different seasons. These results provide information on archaeal diversity in freshwater lake sediments of the Cerrado and indicates that rain is likely a factor that impacts these communities.

  9. Effectiveness of scat-detection dogs in determining species presence in a tropical savanna landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vynne, Carly; Skalski, John R; Machado, Ricardo B; Groom, Martha J; Jácomo, Anah T A; Marinho-Filho, Jader; Ramos Neto, Mario B; Pomilla, Cristina; Silveira, Leandro; Smith, Heath; Wasser, Samuel K

    2011-02-01

    Most protected areas are too small to sustain populations of wide-ranging mammals; thus, identification and conservation of high-quality habitat for those animals outside parks is often a high priority, particularly for regions where extensive land conversion is occurring. This is the case in the vicinity of Emas National Park, a small protected area in the Brazilian Cerrado. Over the last 40 years the native vegetation surrounding the park has been converted to agriculture, but the region still supports virtually all of the animals native to the area. We determined the effectiveness of scat-detection dogs in detecting presence of five species of mammals threatened with extinction by habitat loss: maned wolf (Chrysocyon brachyurus), puma (Puma concolor), jaguar (Panthera onca), giant anteater (Myrmecophaga tridactyla), and giant armadillo (Priodontes maximus). The probability of scat detection varied among the five species and among survey quadrats of different size, but was consistent across team, season, and year. The probability of occurrence, determined from the presence of scat, in a randomly selected site within the study area ranged from 0.14 for jaguars, which occur primarily in the forested areas of the park, to 0.91 for maned wolves, the most widely distributed species in our study area. Most occurrences of giant armadillos in the park were in open grasslands, but in the agricultural matrix they tended to occur in riparian woodlands. At least one target species occurred in every survey quadrat, and giant armadillos, jaguars, and maned wolves were more likely to be present in quadrats located inside than outside the park. The effort required for detection of scats was highest for the two felids. We were able to detect the presence for each of five wide-ranging species inside and outside the park and to assign occurrence probabilities to specific survey sites. Thus, scat dogs provide an effective survey tool for rare species even when accurate detection likelihoods are required. We believe the way we used scat-detection dogs to determine the presence of species can be applied to the detection of other mammalian species in other ecosystems. ©2010 Society for Conservation Biology.

  10. New evidence for hybrid zones of forest and savanna elephants in Central and West Africa

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mondol, Samrat; Moltke, Ida; Hart, John

    2015-01-01

    unsampled areas of Africa. Novel statistical methods applied to these data identify 46 hybrid samples - many more than have been previously identified - only two of which are from the Garamba region. The remaining 44 are from three other geographically distinct locations: a major hybrid zone along...

  11. Silicon Savanna? Local Competence Building and International Venture Capital in Low Income Countries

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hain, Daniel; Jurowetzki, Roman

    2015-01-01

    , or business models which are potentially fit for international or even global markets. In this paper we investigate the pattern of current technology investments in Kenya – one of sub-Saharan Africa’s buzzing ICT centers. In many cases these financial investments are accompanied by intensive technical...

  12. Characterization of active fires in West African savannas by analysis of satellite data: Landsat Thematic Mapper

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Brustet, J.M.; Vickos, J.B.; Fontan, J.; Podaire, A.; Lavenu, F.

    1991-01-01

    Landsat Thematic Mapper provides valuable information on biomass burning, such as the apparent temperature of a fire and its shape. However, the surface determined by remote sensing does not exactly correspond to the burning area, due to an artificial enlargement of the fire front width. This enlargement of the fire front width. This enlargement may have diverse origins. In particular, it is difficult to estimate the temperature of the areas that are behind the fire front and that have been just burned. Emissions from these areas may be detectable by Landsat channels, thus resulting in the observed enlargement of the fire front. Additional experiments including remote sensing by plane are necessary to allow a more complete understanding of these phenomena. Biomass burning is an important source of atmospheric pollution on a global scale. This study indicates that a fire is a significant source of pollution on a local scale

  13. Savanna burning and convective mixing in Southern Africa: Implications for CO emissions and transport

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Connors, V.S.; Cahoon, D.R. Jr.; Reichle, H.G. Jr.; Brunke, E.G.; Garstang, M.; Seiler, W.; Scheel, H.E.

    1991-01-01

    This study examines both the emission and the transport of CO from the surface to the free troposphere and the role of convection in redistributing this gas in the free troposphere over southern Africa. Upper-air soundings, the meteorological analyses from the European Center for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF), and the multispectral imagery from the European Space Agency's Meteosat-2 satellite comprise the meteorological data base. The surface measurements of CO were measured at an atmospheric chemistry laboratory in Cape Point, South Africa. The CO in the middle troposphere was measured by the Measurement of Air Pollution from Satellites (MAPS) experiment flown on the space shuttle. This study focuses on the emissions and transport of CO from Africa south of the equator on 5-6 October 1984

  14. Annual production of harvestable deadwood in semi-arid savannas, South Africa

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Shackleton, CM

    1998-12-14

    Full Text Available production per woody standing biomass was relatively constant from year to year at approximately 17 kg/ha/year per ton live biomass, or 1.7% per annum. Annual production of harvestable deadwood was related more to stand biomass than rainfall zone...

  15. Liming and fertilisation in Pinus taeda plantations with severe nutrient deficiency in savanna soils

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Araína Hulmann Batista

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Soils with high acidity and low exchangeable bases may be responsible for low yields of Pinus taeda in a forest plantation at Jaguariaíva, Paraná State, Brazil. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of liming and fertilisation, applied over litter, on two selected areas with Pinus taeda plantations. Soil, litter and pine needles were evaluated for K, Ca and Mg concentrations and soil acidity parameters. Seven treatments were applied: (i complete (N, P,