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Query: "keywords" (disturbance factors) .

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1.
Climate change and disturbances will shape future temperate forests in the transition zone between Central and SE Europe
Lado Kutnar, Janez Kermavnar, Anže Martin Pintar, 2021

Abstract: It is expected that climate change as well as abiotic and anthropogenic disturbances will strongly influence temperate forests. Besides changes in the main climate variables, various disturbance factors may significantly worsen conditions for mesic Slovenian forests (SE Europe) dominated by European beech (Fagus sylvatica), Norway spruce (Picea abies) and European silver fir (Abies alba). In Slovenia, the climate has warmed in recent decades, with an average annual rate of increase of about 0.4°C per decade or even more than 0.5°C per decade in summer. In addition, disturbances have caused considerable damage to trees in the most extensive forest types in Slovenia, starting with a widespread ice storm in 2014, followed by bark beetle outbreaks, windthrows and salvage logging interventions. After 2014, salvage logging increased from about one third to two thirds of the total annual felling. Over the last two decades, we have observed a decline in Norway spruce growing stock, with the highest rate of decrease in areas below 500 m a.s.l., and an increasing trend for European beech. Overall, the three dominant species (beech, spruce, silver fir), which together account for more than 70% of the total growing stock, have shown a declining trend over the last 20 years. The patterns observed are broadly consistent with earlier predictions developed for different climate change scenarios and with those reported in many other European countries. Adaptive forest management, which implements close-to-nature silviculture, has been traditionally practised in the region under study and has the potential to play an important role in reducing the risks associated with the impacts of climate change and disturbances in the future.
Keywords: climate warming, disturbance factors, ice storm, bark beetle outbreaks, spruce decline, salvage logging, tree species composition, temperate forest, Slovenia
DiRROS - Published: 03.01.2022; Views: 275; Downloads: 171
.pdf Fulltext (2,55 MB)

2.
Post-harvest forest herb layer demography : general patterns are driven by pre-disturbance conditions
Janez Kermavnar, Klemen Eler, Aleksander Marinšek, Lado Kutnar, 2021

Abstract: Timber harvesting constitutes extensive anthropogenic disturbance in temperate forests, producing a broad range of ecological impacts that most often enhance the demographic processes of vegetation. This study monitored post-harvest herb layer demography over a 6-year period in mesic Dinaric fir-beech forests (Slovenia), a vascular plant diversity hotspot among European forests. Three experimental harvesting intensities, i.e. full harvest (FH), partial harvest (PH) and a control treatment (NH), were each applied over a circular area of 4000 m2 and replicated three times at each of three study sites. Vegetation sampling was conducted before harvesting (in 2012), and two (2014) and six (2018) years following it, in a 400 m2 circular plot positioned in the centre of each treatment area. We focused on identifying general demographic patterns and evaluating the effects of various pre-disturbance abiotic and biotic predictors on compositional responses to disturbance. Two years after harvest (2012-2014), compositional shifts were larger than those in the next 4-year period (2014-2018), confirming the general theoretical prediction that species turnover rate decreases along a successional gradient. The degree of compositional shifts in gaps (FH) and thinned stands (PH) was affected by local abiotic factors (geomorphology of karst sinkholes) and community attributes, such as pre-harvest species richness. Our results indicate that compositional stability is positively associated with pre-disturbance species richness. Over the whole study period, increases in plot-level species richness (alpha diversity) and overall enrichment of the species pool (gamma diversity) were accompanied by compositional convergence, i.e. a decline in floristic dissimilarity (beta diversity) between and within study sites. However, the observed tendency towards homogenization was rather weak and would have been even more pronounced if the demographic type of persistent resident species had not shown a high degree of resistance, thus leaving a strong imprint on post-harvest vegetation development by preserving the forest characteristics of the herb layer community.
Keywords: forest succession, demographic types, community assembly, pre-disturbance factors, floristic convergence, fir-beech forests
DiRROS - Published: 22.07.2022; Views: 32; Downloads: 17
.pdf Fulltext (1,91 MB)

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