Succession in sub-boreal forests of west-central British Columbia
Document Type: Journal Article
Author(s): D. F. Clark; J. A. Antos; G. E. Bradfield
Publication Year: 2003

Cataloging Information

  • Abies lasiocarpa
  • Abies lasiocarpa
  • age classes
  • boreal forests
  • British Columbia
  • Canada
  • chronosequence
  • coniferous forests
  • diameter classes
  • disturbance
  • disturbance
  • diversity
  • European spruce
  • fire frequency
  • fire management
  • forest management
  • heavy fuels
  • herbaceous vegetation
  • lodgepole pine
  • multivariate ordination
  • old growth forests
  • overstory
  • Picea
  • Picea engelmannii
  • Picea glauca
  • Pinus contorta
  • Pinus contorta
  • population density
  • post fire recovery
  • post-fire succession
  • shrubs
  • species diversity (plants)
  • stand characteristics
  • stand structure
  • statistical analysis
  • subalpine fir
  • succession
  • understory vegetation
  • vascular plants
  • white spruce
  • wildfires
Record Maintained By:
Record Last Modified: June 1, 2018
FRAMES Record Number: 50905
Tall Timbers Record Number: 27629
TTRS Location Status: Not in file
TTRS Call Number: Not in 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.


Structural and compositional changes were analysed over the course of 400+ yr of post-fire succession in the sub-boreal forests of west-central British Columbia. Using a chronosequence of 57 stands ranging from 11 to 438 yr in age, we examined changes in forest structure and composition with complementary PCA and DCA ordination techniques. To determine stand ages and timing of tree recruitment, approximately 1800 trees were aged. Most early successional forests were dominated by Pinus contorta, which established rapidly following fire. Abies lasiocarpa and Picea glauca x engelmannii were also able to establish quickly, but continued to establish throughout the sere. Few Pinus contorta survived beyond 200 yr, resulting in major changes in forest structure. In some stands P. contorta never established, which led to considerable variation among stands less than 200 yr old. The oldest forests converged on dominance by Abies lasiocarpa. Vascular plant diversity decreased during succession whereas canopy structure became more complex as gap dynamics developed. Although these sub-boreal forests contain few tree species, successional changes were pronounced, with structure changing more than composition across the chronosequence.

Clark, D. F., J. A. Antos, and G. E. Bradfield. 2003. Succession in sub-boreal forests of west-central British Columbia. Journal of Vegetation Science, v. 14, no. 5, p. 721-732.