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Ecología austral

On-line version ISSN 1667-782X


BRAN, Donaldo E et al. Effect of burn severity on vegetation recovery in the Austral Monte. Ecol. austral [online]. 2007, vol.17, n.1, pp.123-131. ISSN 1667-782X.

Fire has been a recurrent phenomenon in Northeast region of Patagonia and it takes place, mainly, after humid years that promote the growth of the grasses. The consequent accumulation of fine combustible material favors the propagation of fire. However, little is known about the post-fire evolution of the vegetation in relation to the magnitude of the damage caused by this disturbance. The objective of this work was to evaluate the effect of Burn Severity (IS) over the post-fire evolution of different functional groups of the vegetation (shrubs, perennial grasses and annual grasses) in two growing seasons after fire in an area located in the East of Río Negro province, inside the Monte Phytogeographic Province. The cover of annual grasses in the areas with lower IS overcome the non-burn sites in the first post fire growing season, while in the areas with higher IS this took place during the second season. The perennial grasses cover regenerated in the second year in all IS classes, while shrubs recovered less than half of their original cover. The initial increase in the grasses/shrubs relationship produced after the fire would be more favorable for cattle, however negative impacts on the soil can exist (erosion, loss of fertility) that should be evaluated before generating practices of fire management.

Keywords : Fire; Burn severity; Functional groups; Monte phytogeographic province.

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