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ABSTRACT:

Patterns of liana community diversity and structure in a tropical rainforest reserve Ghana: effects of human disturbance

Journal Article

Addo-Fordjour P; Rahmad ZB; Amui J; Pinto C; Dwomoh M

2013

African Journal of Ecology

51

217-227

Most studies have concluded that liana diversity and structure\r\nincrease with disturbance. However a contradictory\r\npattern has emerged recently calling for more research in the\r\narea. Liana diversity and structure were investigated in three\r\nforest types that differ in disturbance intensity (nondisturbed\r\nmoderately disturbed and heavily disturbed forest: NDF MDF\r\nand HDF respectively) in the Atewa Range Forest Reserve\r\nGhana. In each forest type 10 square plots of 0.25 ha were\r\ndemarcated. Lianas with diameter 1 cm located on trees\r\nwith diameter 10 cm were enumerated. A total of 429\r\nindividuals representing 40 species 29 genera and seventeen\r\nfamilies were identified in the study. Shannon diversity and\r\nspecies richness of lianas were significantly lower in the HDF\r\n(P < 0.05). Liana density and basal area differed significantly\r\nacross all forest types (P < 0.0001). The importance value\r\nindex (IVI) of most liana species varied greatly across the\r\nforest types. The current study has provided evidence to\r\nsupport the patternof decreasing liana diversity and structure\r\nwith disturbance in some tropical forests. Further studies are\r\nrecommended to gain more understanding of the factors\r\nthat are responsible for the divergent liana responses to\r\ndisturbance in tropical forests.

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The Liana Ecology Project is supported by Marquette University and funded in part by the National Science Foundation.