Duke Ecologist Says Logging Is Creating 'Mahogany Deserts'

o grow new mahoganies in the clearings opened up by wind and fire.

The regeneration process may be even more complicated. In a recent revisit to Quintana Roo, Snook found that mahogany seeds can actually successfully germinate and begin growing in the shade. It's only after they run out of their own stored food -- perhaps a year after germination begins -- that the tiny shoots need open sunlight to make food through the photosynthetic process.

At a study site in Belize as well as in Mexico, Snook is dropping mahogany seeds onto cornfields to see if the species can also be regenerated and managed in conjunction with shifting agriculture.

"I'm sure that's what happened in the past," she said. "Not only did mahoganies have the benefit of hurricanes and fires. They also had the benefit of Mayans who created little openings in the forest and then abandoned them after they finished a year or two of corn production."

Using a rough calculation, Snook predicted that a 500-year old mahogany tree may produce half a million seeds over its long life. "Most seeds die," she said. "Very few come to anything. But only one seed can replace its parent."

Another consideration is that mahogany seeds are only viable for a matter of months before they biodegrade and die, she noted. That means they cannot be stored and preserved indefinitely in the ground the ways seeds of many other plants can.

In her article in Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society, Snook warns that the way mahoganies reproduce makes them "vulnerable to logging, first because juvenile mahoganies are not found in the understory, and secondly because logging operations shortcircuit mahogany regeneration processes. ..."

Logging interferes "by selectively removing almost all mahogany seed sources while leaving standing competing vegetation of other species," she writes.

Snook's article also supports the American mahogany's listing under Appendix II of

Contact: Monte Basgall
Duke University

Page: 1 2 3 4 5 6

Related biology news :

1. Ecologists help keep death off the roads
2. Ecologist calls for creation of an international panel to assess human behavior
3. Ecologists book on introduced species destructiveness
4. Ecologists simplify population theory
5. Ecologist Gretchen Daily advocates saving the planet by making conservation profitable
6. Paul Ehrlich named Eminent Ecologist for 2001
7. Ecologist wins international award
8. CTC Visualizations Help Ecologists See The Forest And The Trees
9. First-Of-A-Kind Study By University Of Georgia Ecologist Estimates Role Of Natural Forces On Insect Populations
10. Creating polymers that act like biomolecules
11. Creating a standard spectrum of smell

Post Your Comments:

(Date:11/9/2015)...  Synaptics Inc. (NASDAQ: SYNA ), the leading ... into the automotive market with a comprehensive and dedicated ... consumer electronics human interface innovation. Synaptics, industry-leading touch controllers, ... automotive industry and will be implemented in numerous locations ... , Japan , and ...
(Date:11/2/2015)... 2015  SRI International has been awarded a contract ... services to the National Cancer Institute (NCI) PREVENT Cancer ... expertise, modern testing and support facilities, and analytical instrumentation ... toxicology studies to evaluate potential cancer prevention drugs. ... Cancer Drug Development Program is an NCI-supported pipeline to ...
(Date:10/29/2015)... , Oct. 29, 2015  The J. Craig Venter ... titled, "DNA Synthesis and Biosecurity: Lessons Learned and Options ... of Health and Human Services guidance for synthetic biology ... --> --> ... has the potential to pose unique biosecurity threats. It ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... November 24, 2015 , ... Copper is an essential ... bound to proteins, copper is also toxic to cells. With a $1.3 million ... (WPI) will conduct a systematic study of copper in the bacteria Pseudomonas aeruginosa ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... , Nov. 24, 2015  Clintrax Global, Inc., a worldwide provider ... , today announced that the company has set a new ... 391% quarter on quarter growth posted for Q3 of 2014 to ... and Mexico , with the establishment of an ... 2015. --> United Kingdom and ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... November 24, 2015 , ... The Academy of Model Aeronautics (AMA), ... MultiGP, also known as Multirotor Grand Prix, to represent the First–Person View (FPV) racing ... AMA members have embraced this type of racing and several new model aviation pilots ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... Technologies Ltd. (OTCQB: TIKRF) today announced that its Annual General Meeting of ... Israel time, at the law offices of Goldfarb ... Floor, Tel Aviv, Israel . ... Tamir to the Board of Directors; , election of ... of an amendment to certain terms of options granted to our Chief ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: