2017 – 2019 REDES Centro Conicyt CEAM – Alicante

Investigador Principal: Eduardo Arellano.

Recently, fire frequency and intensity in Central Chile have changed significantly mainly associate to extreme weather conditions. The last years marked a record of total number and surface of burned forest and severe drought. As a consequence of those disturbances, plant mortality and decay processes have been largely observed in many reforestation iniatives affecting species composition of communities. Furthermore, changes in the fire regime produce deep changes in the structure and composition of vegetation. The concatenated interaction of these factors (drought and fires) can dramatically change the structure and composition of vegetation in drylands.

In this context, the main objective of this proposal is to develop a collaboration network between CAPES (Chile) and CEAM (Spain). The CEAM has mode thant 20 years of experience working in the Mediterranean region in Spain, where fire intensity and drought have been largely affecting vegetation development. The CEAM research group has large experience modeling and monitoring vegetation recovery affected by fire and drought. They have several publication based on observational and manipulative experiments about the effect of recent drought on vegetation. The group has a broad experience in the study of the ecology, conservation and management of Mediterranean ecosystems, from grasslands to forests. On the other hand, CAPES researchers have been evaluating the effect of different restoration techniques on vegetation recovery after fire or severe droughts. Despite the fact that there are many similarities in term of systems and vegetation response and techniques that could be introduce in Chile, there is still very little knowledge about long term monitoring vegetation recover and the selection of forest restoration techniques based on the level of land degradation.