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Bird Perches Increase Forest Seeds on Puerto Rican Landslides.Author(s): Aaron B. Shiels; Lawrence R. Walker
Source: Restoration Ecology Vol. 11 No. 4, pp. 457–465 DECEMBER
Publication Series: Miscellaneous Publication
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DescriptionLandslides result in the loss of vertical vegetative structure, soil nutrients, and the soil seed bank. These losses impede timely recovery of tropical forest communities. In this study we added bird perches to six Puerto Rican landslides with three types of surfaces (bare, climbing fern, grass) in an effort to facilitate inputs of forest seeds through bird dispersal and to accelerate plant succession. Numbers of birddispersed forest seeds were significantly higher in plots beneath introduced perches than in control plots. Perches did not increase forest seedling densities compared with control plots. Seven different species of birds were observed on introduced perches. Because 99% of the seed inputs to controls and perch plots in the six landslides were winddispersed seeds (mostly graminoids), perches can improve landslide restoration if woody plants establish and shade out the dominant graminoid and climbing fern ground cover. Although increasing seed inputs from forest species is a critical step in accelerating revegetation of landslides, we suggest that supplemental restoration techniques be applied in addition to bird perches to promote forest recovery.
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CitationShiels, Aaron B.; Walker, Lawrence R. 2003. Bird Perches Increase Forest Seeds on Puerto Rican Landslides. Restoration Ecology Vol. 11 No. 4, pp. 457–465 DECEMBER
Keywordsbird perches, disturbance, landslides, Puerto Rico, revegetation, seeds, seedlings, seed dispersal.
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