Tree Species Composition and Structure near Road Borders in the Laurel Forest of Anaga (Tenerife - Islas Canarias)

Zaira Negrá­n, José Ramón Arévalo


Urbanization is one of the main causes of species extinction. Closely linked to urbanization are road systems, which are a source of biotic and abiotic effects on the surrounding landscape. The continued existence of these corridors results in enormous human activity (Forman & Alexander, 1998). In particular, roads sharply define and fragment forest ecosystems leading to changes in plant species composition and vegetation structure from road border to the surrounding interior.

This paper assesses border effects on tree species richness and composition in the laurel forest of Anaga, Tenerife, Spain. Effects of anthropogenic corridors on vegetation differed among the study sites. Multivariate analysis revealed that species composition is more related to the sampling site than to the effect of the corridor, while for density, significant differences were found between the road border and forest interior but not as a regular pattern. This suggests that main corridor disturbances regarding tree basal area is limited to the immediate road edge in the laurel forest, while for species composition, no significant differences were found.


DBH, DCA, disturbances, edge effect, tree density

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