FentonBergeron2012

Reference

Fenton, N.J., Bergeron, Y. (2012) Dynamic Old-Growth Forests? A Case Study of Boreal Black Spruce ForestBryophytes. Silva Fennica, 45(5):983-994. (PDF )

Abstract

Old-growth forests have sparked significant interest over the lasttwenty years and definitions have evolved from structure based toprocess based, acknowledging the diversity of forests that couldbe considered old growth. However studies frequently group all forestsover a certain age into a single type, negating the dynamic processesthat create old growth. In this study we examine a 2350-year chronosequencein boreal black spruce forests in northwestern Quebec to determinewhether continued community change can be observed in the bryophytelayer. Bryophytes dominate the understory of boreal forests and influenceecosystem functioning, particularly in paludified forests where productionexceeds decomposition in the organic layer. Community compositionand richness changed throughout the chronosequence with no evidenceof a steady state associated with an old-growth phase. In contrastthe bryophyte community continued to evolve with multiple phasesbeing evident. These results suggest that old-growth forests on theClay Belt of northwestern Quebec and northeastern Ontario, Canada,should be regarded as part of the continuous gradient in forest developmentrather than a single state. This complicates conservation of theseforests as multiple phases should be considered when planning forestreserves.

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@ARTICLE { FentonBergeron2012,
    AUTHOR = { Fenton, N.J. and Bergeron, Y. },
    TITLE = { Dynamic Old-Growth Forests? A Case Study of Boreal Black Spruce ForestBryophytes },
    JOURNAL = { Silva Fennica },
    YEAR = { 2012 },
    VOLUME = { 45 },
    NUMBER = { 5 },
    PAGES = { 983-994 },
    ABSTRACT = { Old-growth forests have sparked significant interest over the lasttwenty years and definitions have evolved from structure based toprocess based, acknowledging the diversity of forests that couldbe considered old growth. However studies frequently group all forestsover a certain age into a single type, negating the dynamic processesthat create old growth. In this study we examine a 2350-year chronosequencein boreal black spruce forests in northwestern Quebec to determinewhether continued community change can be observed in the bryophytelayer. Bryophytes dominate the understory of boreal forests and influenceecosystem functioning, particularly in paludified forests where productionexceeds decomposition in the organic layer. Community compositionand richness changed throughout the chronosequence with no evidenceof a steady state associated with an old-growth phase. In contrastthe bryophyte community continued to evolve with multiple phasesbeing evident. These results suggest that old-growth forests on theClay Belt of northwestern Quebec and northeastern Ontario, Canada,should be regarded as part of the continuous gradient in forest developmentrather than a single state. This complicates conservation of theseforests as multiple phases should be considered when planning forestreserves. },
    KEYWORDS = { old-growth forest, succession, disturbances, boreal, bryophytes, climax,gap dynamics },
    OWNER = { Daniel Lesieur },
    TIMESTAMP = { 2012.01.16 },
    URL = { http://www.metla.fi/silvafennica/full/sf45/sf455983.pdf },
}

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