Palm community transitions along a topographic gradient from floodplain to terra firme in the eastern Amazon

Rodolfo SALM, Anderson PRATES, Nadson RESSYÉ SIMÕES, Lisa FEDER
2015 Acta Amazonica  
Palms show clear niche segregation patterns along topographic gradients in tropical forests, with some species associated to terra firme and others to seasonally flooded areas. The aim of this study was to quantitatively describe the fine-scale spatial variation within a palm community, tracking the changes in species' abundance along environmental gradients associated with a perennial stream the eastern Amazon. The study of palm communities was based on 60 forest plots in which all adult palms
more » ... were counted. We found a total of 566 palms in a community containing 11 species. Furthermore, we found a significant separation in the palm community between seasonally-flooded and terra firme forests. We found a gradient with various densities of the three most abundant palm species within the first 100 m away from the flooded area. Other species were located exclusively in the terra firme forest. The abundance of the six most common species were distributed in relation to humidity gradients from floodplains to terra firme, with palm distribution from the most flood-tolerant to the least flood-tolerant palm species as follows: Euterpe oleracea, Attalea phalerata and Socratea exorrhiza (species with floodplain affinity), Astrocaryum gynacanthum, Astrocaryum aculeatum, Attalea maripa (species with terra firme affinity)
doi:10.1590/1809-4392201401533 fatcat:5jf3vu3ijncazab756sueuphoe