Evolution of biodiversity in homogeneous Scots pine stands by an ecologically diversified management

Author Biographies

N. Lust

B. Muys

Main Article Content

N. Lust

B. Muys

Published Oct 3, 1995

Abstract

This  study evaluates three important parameters of biodiversity in first  generation Scots pine forests on sandy soils: herbal layer, natural  regeneration and stand structure. The research was undertaken in the Belgian  Campine Region, where the original oak-birch forest had been destroyed in the  course of time and finally been replaced by monocultures of Scots pine. These  pine forests are characterised by a low biodiversity. In maturing stands of  this type, however, a spontaneous increase of biodiversity is noticed.     Herbal species diversity is very limited in all age classes. Spontaneous  establishment of Scots pine seedlings is presently a widespread phenomenon in  aging stands. Different regeneration patterns are found. Mainly due to the  lengthening of the rotation in combination with the ingrowth of several  hardwood species, the homogeneous Scots pine stands are gradually and  spontaneously transformed into heterogeneous mixed stands, featuring a  noticeable increase of biodiversity.     Nevertheless, selected human interventions may further increase  biodiversity. The fundamental management principles are discussed: avoidance  of big disturbances, lengthening of the rotation period, use of native tree  species, utilization of natural regeneration, protection of small valuable  biotopes and permanent monitoring.

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