Fire human-climate interaction in Atlas cedar forests of Aurès, Northern Algeria

Dalila Kherchouche, Said Slimani, Ramzi Touchan, Djazia Touati, Hamana Malki, Christopher H. Baisan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

Forty-one fire-scarred samples from two new Cedrus atlantica sites in the Ouled-Yaâgoub Forest were collected and combined with the two previous sites from the Chelia Forest reported in Slimani et al. (2014) to develop a regional analysis of fire history in the Aurès Mountains, northern Algeria. Prior to 1850, cedar forests were characterized by high frequency, low-intensity surface fire regimes. Fire frequency declined after 1850 after the elimination of the Barbary lion and the enforcement of the first laws governing land and forest use in Algeria. Most of the fire events in both forests occurred in the summer season, the latter part of the growing season, or in the dormant season. We compared past fires occurrences and an October-June precipitation reconstruction. On a regional scale, precipitation was significantly reduced in the months prior to the fire occurrence. In addition, precipitation during the first year preceding the fire years was significantly above average. This study provides a baseline for planning and justifying improved ecosystem management programs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)125-134
Number of pages10
JournalDendrochronologia
Volume55
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 2019

Keywords

  • Aurès region
  • Climate
  • Fire history
  • Human activity
  • Tree-ring

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology
  • Plant Science

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