GEP  Vol.4 No.7 , July 2016
Edge Effects of Oil Pipeline Canopy Openings on Tree Community Structure and Dynamics in a Montane Atlantic Forest
Abstract: The Atlantic forest has historically been severely deforested, and only fragments currently remain that are subject to a wide variety of anthropogenic impacts, including edge effects that can cause structural and functional degradation. The Tinguá Biological Reserve-RJ comprises approximately 26,000 hectares of well-preserved Atlantic Forest, but it is subject to impacts caused by two canopy openings along oil pipelines. Comparisons were made between pipeline edges and forest interiors to evaluate edge effects on the structure and dynamics of those tree communities. Tree densities were higher along forest edges, apparently increasing over time. Tree basal areas, on the other hand, have decreased along edges due to higher mortality rates. Linear canopy opening edges showed higher densities of small trees, while the interior had more very large trees, indicating changes in successional processes and community structural patterns due to edge effects.
Cite this paper: Rodrigues, P. , Melo, L. , Abreu, R. and Iguatemy, M. (2016) Edge Effects of Oil Pipeline Canopy Openings on Tree Community Structure and Dynamics in a Montane Atlantic Forest. Journal of Geoscience and Environment Protection, 4, 132-140. doi: 10.4236/gep.2016.47014.

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