Surface fire drives short-term changes in the vegetative phenology of woody species in a Brazilian savanna
Keywords:crown foliage cover, deciduity, fire ecology, phenology, sprouting
AbstractWe evaluated the effects of fire on the vegetative phenological behavior (crown foliage cover, sprouting, mature and young leaves) of woody species at two sites in the Brazilian savanna, one of which had been accidentally burned. We used generalized additive mixed models to test the hypothesis that: 1) fire damages total foliage cover, thus leading to changes in vegetative phenological patterns. As this hypothesis was corroborated, we also tested whether 2) the damage caused by fire to the total crown foliage cover and mature leaves is greater in evergreen than in deciduous species, and 3) the negative effects of fire on vegetative phenology persist after the first fire-free year. The first two hypotheses were corroborated, but the third was not. Fire effects on total crown foliage cover and mature leaves were greatest during the first three months following the fire, and were significantly greater in evergreen species. For shoots and young leaves, the greatest differences found between three and seven months post-fire. On the other hand, no differences were observed in phenological events between burned and unburned sites in the second year post-fire, indicating that marked effects of the fire were only observed over a short period. Our results showed immediate negative effects on the vegetative phenophases, but also that these effects are transient, and cannot be discerned after the first fire-free year.
How to Cite
Silvério, D. V., Pereira, O. R., Mews, H. A., Maracahipes-Santos, L., Santos, J. O. dos, & Lenza, E. (2015). Surface fire drives short-term changes in the vegetative phenology of woody species in a Brazilian savanna. Biota Neotropica, 15(3). Retrieved from //www.biotaneotropica.org.br/BN/article/view/1163