Leaf Fall in a New Forest: ecosystem functioning of stands dominated by an introduced species
Fonseca da Silva, Jéssica
Lugo, Ariel E.
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Today about half of the island has been naturally reforested with native and introduced species (Lugo and Helmer 2004). These new forests have been criticized around the world, but studies showing the real influence of introduced species upon the ecosystems are relatively few. We studied the litterfall dynamics of a secondary forest established in valleys at El Tallonal, in the karst region of Arecibo, Puerto Rico. This forest is dominated by Castilla elastica (Moraceae), an introduced tree species from Central America and the North of South America. It’s common in secondary forests (Cokeley et al 2000) and is a deciduous tree species.