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Natural succession in restored ecosystems: canopy composition and regeneration processes.

Grant number: 11/16126-8
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Master
Effective date (Start): March 01, 2012
Effective date (End): June 30, 2013
Field of knowledge:Agronomical Sciences - Forestry Resources and Forestry Engineering - Nature Conservation
Principal Investigator:Giselda Durigan
Grantee:Luciane Missae Sato
Host Institution: Faculdade de Ciências Agronômicas (FCA). Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP). Campus de Botucatu. Botucatu , SP, Brazil


Different models of mixed-species forest plantations have been widely used as a way to restore lost diversity, removing invasive species and promote the recruitment of other species in ecosystems. However, there is no empirical evidence about what would be the minimum for ensuring biodiversity restoration of ecosystem processes. This study aims to test the hypothesis that canopy composition (richness and abundance of species / functional groups) influences the processes of natural regeneration, starting from the assumption that there is a minimal structure that ensures the functionality of the forest in terms of composition, richness and functional diversity of natural regeneration. To do this, natural regeneration will be discussed broadly (seed rain, seed bank and seedling bank) in plots of 30 mx 30 m in two different models of forest restoration with contrasting species richness, implanted for 13-14 years in two sites with different soil conditions and neighborhood. The seed rain data will be collected monthly while the seed bank and seedling bank will be analyzed at the end of the dry and rainy seasons of 2011/2012. The total richness and diversity indices will be estimated and compared using specific tests. The comparison between species richness will be made by methods of thinning and correction through the ratio of ± Fisher.A comparison of the abundance of natural regeneration, seed rain and seed bank between the plots shall be made by non-parametric tests and the association species of natural regeneration, seed bank and seed rain in the canopy will be made by means of multivariate analysis.Keywords: species diversity, ecological restoration, natural succession, semideciduous forest.

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