6000 years of forest dynamics in Suserup Skov, a seminatural Danish woodland
Document Type: Journal Article
Author(s): G. E. Hannon; R. Bradshaw; J. Emborg
Publication Year: 2000

Cataloging Information

  • Acer
  • Alnus
  • Alnus glutinosa
  • archaeological sites
  • Betula
  • Betula pubescens
  • charcoal
  • Corylus
  • Corylus avellana
  • deciduous forests
  • dendrochronology
  • Denmark
  • disturbance
  • Europe
  • Fagus
  • Fagus sylvatica
  • forest fragmentation
  • forest management
  • fossils
  • Fraxinus
  • Fraxinus excelsior
  • fruits
  • habitat conversion
  • hardwood forests
  • herbaceous vegetation
  • histories
  • Malus
  • paleoecology
  • pine forests
  • pine hardwood forests
  • Pinus sylvestris
  • pollen
  • Populus
  • Populus tremula
  • post fire recovery
  • Quercus
  • Quercus robur
  • Salix
  • sedimentation
  • statistical analysis
  • Tilia
  • Tilia cordata
  • trees
  • Ulmus
  • vegetation surveys
  • wildfires
  • International
Record Maintained By:
Record Last Modified: June 1, 2018
FRAMES Record Number: 38282
Tall Timbers Record Number: 12861
TTRS Location Status: In-file
TTRS Call Number: Fire File
TTRS Abstract Status: Okay, Fair use, Reproduced by permission

This bibliographic record was either created or modified by the Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy and is provided without charge to promote research and education in Fire Ecology. The E.V. Komarek Fire Ecology Database is the intellectual property of the Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy.


1 The history of a forest stand over the last 6000 years has been reconstructed by studying pollen, macrofossils and charcoal from a small, wet hollow in Suserup Skov on the island of Sjaelland in eastern Denmark. 2 The earliest recorded forest was Tilia-dominated but contained an intimate mixture of many different tree species that included Acer campestre, A. platanoides, Alnus glutinosa, Betula pubescens, Corylus avellana, Frangula alnus, Fraxinus excelsior, Malus sylvestris, Populus tremula, Pinus sylvestris, Quercus robur, Q. petraea, Salix spp., Sorb us aucuparia, Tilia cordata and T. platyphyllos. The preserved fruits of T. platyphyllos confirm its hitherto doubtful status as a native member of the Danish flora. 3 The present-day woodland developed after a period of intensive anthropogenic disturbance between 600 BC and AD 900, during which time open canopy conditions prevailed at Suserup. Fagus sylvatica and Fraxinus excelsior are the dominant trees at present, together with some Quercus robur and Ulmus glabra. 4 Charcoal was present in the sediments from most time periods except at the Ulmus decline. In the last 1000 years of the sequence — the period of Fagus dominance — charcoal counts were consistently low. 5 Pinus sylvestris was a natural component of this primarily deciduous forest, and the last macrofossil find dates from c. AD 900. Macro-fossil Pinus cone scales recorded c. AD 1800 originate from planted individuals. Prior to Fagus dominance, the forest had an open structure partly caused by frequent, low-intensity fires associated with the presence of Pinus sylvestris. 6 The replacement of Tilia by Fagus in this forest was catalysed by human activity If the forest had not been so disturbed, the rich diversity of trees would most probably have persisted up to the present time, with only a moderate-sized Fagus population.

Hannon, G. E., R. Bradshaw, and J. Emborg. 2000. 6000 years of forest dynamics in Suserup Skov, a seminatural Danish woodland. Global Ecology and Biogeography Letters, v. 9, p. 101-114.