Post-fire recovery of Abies cephalonica forest communities: the case of Mt Parnitha National Park, Attica, Greece
iForest : Biogeosciences and Forestry
Mountain coniferous forests of Southern Europe seem to be increasingly affected by large fires. Endemic Greek fir (Abies cephalonica) forests were among the most affected ecosystems by the 2007 extreme wildfires in Greece. The aim of this study is to investigate the pattern of post-fire regeneration of fir forest plant communities of Mount Parnitha National Park, in Attica (Greece), after a large wildfire. A network of 8 severely burned sites across the mountain ridge was established in order
... ablished in order to monitor natural regeneration of A. cephalonica as well as post-fire floristic composition and species richness. Field campaigns took place in two distinct time periods, one close to the fire event and one 8 to 10 years after. Generalized linear models were used to explore the effects of distance and microhabitat variables on the post-fire regeneration of the Greek fir. Distance from the unburned patches, slope and cover of woody species significantly affected A. cephalonica seedling establishment and hence its natural post-fire regeneration. Floristic composition and plant species richness of the recovering fir communities changed through time. During the initial phase, high species richness was recorded, mainly because of the high contribution of herbaceous species. During the second period, species richness was lower and similar to that recorded in the unburned fir communities. It is during this period when the first seedlings of the Greek fir managed to establish, although their density is rather low to ensure full recovery of the forest.