Ecological Effects of Strong Winds on Forests

Authored by: Stephen M. Turton , Mohammed Alamgir

Routledge Handbook of Forest Ecology

Print publication date:  October  2015
Online publication date:  October  2015

Print ISBN: 9780415735452
eBook ISBN: 9781315818290
Adobe ISBN: 9781317816447

10.4324/9781315818290.ch9

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Abstract

Natural and anthropogenic disturbances shape forest ecosystems by controlling their structure, species composition and functional processes (Dale et al., 2001). Forest ecosystem dynamics are largely dependent on natural disturbances (like strong winds), that reshape ecosystem structure and composition, modulate ecosystem functioning, and reset and accelerate succession (Franklin et al., 2002; Turton and Stork, 2008; Turner, 2010; Thom et al., 2013). Strong winds – typically those above gale force or 61 km h-1 – are among the most important exogenic disturbance agents affecting forest ecosystems across the world, at a range of scales (Proctor et al., 2001; Zhao et al., 2006; Lugo, 2008; Turton, 2008; Wang and Xu, 2009; Yoshida et al., 2011; Turton, 2012).

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