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A multidisciplinary cooperative project on alpine forest and mixed grass-/woodlands ecosystems

Objective

The objective is to describe and understand the dynamic of alpine ecosystems.

At several sites of the alpine regions, including the Alps, the Jura and the Pyrenees, comparative and complementary investigations will be carried out in the 2 main research areas of the dynamic of alpine forest ecosystems and the multiple use of mixed wood and grasslands ecosystems.

In order to investigate the mechanisms controlling the long term dynamic of forest ecosystems, distinction is made between past trends and future trends. 2 distinct levels of analysis are given priorities as regards the study of past trends:
a landscape ecological approach trends to reconstruct the history of different landscapes, to identify critical stages and to lead to further methodological guidelines for a more dynamic interpretation of current alpine forest landscapes;
and a second approach concentrates on environmental factors which are likely to affect the vitality and capacity of regeneration of tree populations. Seed production has been selected as an appropriate indicator for such constraints. The investigation of potential trends are conducted in 2 directions. Both will concentrate on the processes of natural regeneration, and related environmental factors:
in open areas, in order to assess the role of natural site conditions and anthropogenic factors on the recolonization of abandoned slopes;
and in well established forest ecosystems, study of the gaps, natural or artificial, in order to assess their role in stand generation, as well as the relationships between structure and stability.

In the research into multiple use of mixed grass and woodlands ecosystems, 3 levels of analysis are used:
the landscape ecological approach to identify the different patterns of mixed pasture forest landscape, with regard to animal utilization (wild or domestic ungulates);
silvopastoral systems to define the practical conditions for a sustainable multiple land use on the basis of the analysis of different systems, including experimental treatments;
and tree grass interactions by analysis of the different interactions (through microclimate, soil, water and nutrient budgets, etc) and their impacts on the main components (grasslands and underlayers, animals and trees).

Funding Scheme

CSC - Cost-sharing contracts

Coordinator

International Centre for Alpine Environments
Address
Campus Scientifique Du Bourget-du-lac
73011 Chambéry
France

Participants (12)

CONSEJO SUPERIOR DE INVESTIGACIONES CIENTIFICAS
Spain
Address
S/n,avda. Montanana 177
50080 Zaragoza
Centre National du Machinisme Agricole, du Génie Rural, des Eaux et des Forêts (CEMAGREF)
France
Address
Domaine Universitaire
38402 Saint-martin-d'hères
Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique (INRA)
France
Address
Chemin De Borde-rouge Auzeville
31326 Castanet-tolosan
Istituto Sperimentale per l'Assestamento Forestale e per l'Alpicoltura
Italy
Address
Piazza Nicolini 6
38050 Villazzano Trento
LEOPOLD-FRANZENS-UNIVERSITAET INNSBRUCK
Austria
Address
15,Sternwartestrasse 15
6020 Innsbruck
Nationalparkverwaltung Berchtesgaden
Germany
Address
Doktorberg 6
83471 Berchtesgaden
Parc Naturel Régional du Vercors
France
Address
La Cascade
38250 Lans-en-vercors
UNIVERSITA DEGLI STUDI DI PADOVA
Italy
Address
Via Romea
35020 Legnaro
Università degli Studi di Firenze
Italy
Address
Via San Bonaventura 13
50145 Firenze
Università degli Studi di Padova
Italy
Address
Via Gradenigo 6
35131 Padova
Università degli Studi di Torino
Italy
Address
Via Leonardo Da Vinci 44
10095 Grugliasco Torino
Université de Savoie
France
Address

73011 Chambéry