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The response of land snail assemblages below aspens to forest fire and clear-cutting in Fennoscandian boreal forests
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Botany.
2011 (English)In: Forest Ecology and Management, ISSN 0378-1127, Vol. 261, no 11, 1811-1819 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Species can persist in a landscape with recurrent disturbances either through local survival or by dispersing to sites of a preferred successional stage. This study investigated in what extent forest floor dwelling land snails survived forest fires and clear-cutting. Snail fauna in LFH (litter, fermenting litter and humus) samples below retained aspen trees in disturbed areas were compared with samples under scattered aspens in adjacent forests by extracting snails from LFH samples below five aspens in several stands of each type (five forest fires, six clear-cuts, and seven undisturbed forests). LFH samples from burnt sites had a higher pH than from forests, but on average a lower abundance of individual snails (11 vs. 30 in 0.5 I LFH) and 50% lower species density (3 vs. 6 species). The abundances and species densities in the clear-cuts were less affected. There was generally a positive relationship between pH and both species density and abundance in all the stand types. Burning apparently depleted the snail fauna considerably and some species may be dependent on dispersal if they are to recover within the burnt area, while the snail assemblages at clear-cuts did not differ significantly in species composition from adjacent forests. The positive relationship between pH and snail prevalence on the burnt sites raises questions regarding the pre- and post-fire spatial variation in pH (and available minerals) within and among stands and how it relates to snail survival rates and their capacity to track suitable places after the disturbance. Retained aspens at clear-cuts seem to harbour a forest like land snail fauna.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2011. Vol. 261, no 11, 1811-1819 p.
Keyword [en]
Disturbance, Forestry, Gastropod, pH, Refugia, Soil fauna
National Category
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-67838DOI: 10.1016/j.foreco.2011.02.003ISI: 000291125700011OAI: diva2:471713
authorCount :1Available from: 2012-01-02 Created: 2012-01-02 Last updated: 2012-01-02Bibliographically approved

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Hylander, Kristoffer
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