Most of forest patches in southeast Brazil are surrounded by anthropic landscape and dominated by lianas. To know the role of such plants for the regeneration of these degraded patches is therefore essential for elaborating plans of ecological restoration. In such a context, the present project aims at studying the ecological filters that affect the regeneration of tree species in degraded forest patches infested by lianas. The project will be carried on in a 35 acre forest patch in Piracicaba, São Paulo state, Brazil. Experimental design consists in placing 20 permanent circular plots with a 10 m radius in very degraded vegetation (mostly devoid of trees and dominated by lianas) and 10 in degraded vegetation (presence of bigger trees, but still covered by lianas); additionally, half the plots in both situations will undergo liana cutting, while the other half won`t. In each plot, the following parameters shall be evaluated: (1) seed rain; (2) germination rate of fifteen indigenous tree species, including pioneers, initial secondary and late secondary; (3) initial growth of seedlings belonging to the same species of the germination test; (4) growth rate of individuals with DAP > 5 cm using dendrometer bands. We believe that the future results of this work may support the definition of methodologies for the restoration of degraded forest patches commonly found in anthropic landscapes, therefore adding to biodiversity conservation and reestablishment of ecosystem services in such patches.
News published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the scholarship: