References of "Haurez, Barbara"
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See detailLe rôle des rongeurs dans la dispersion des diaspores en milieu forestier (synthèse bibliographique)
Evrard, Quentin ULiege; Haurez, Barbara ULiege; Doucet, Jean-Louis ULiege

in Biotechnologie, Agronomie, Société et Environnement = Biotechnology, Agronomy, Society and Environment (2017)

Introduction. Seed dispersal is a key interaction that influences a number of ecological processes that are important to the maintenance of diversity in forest ecosystems. Rodents, mainly considered as ... [more ▼]

Introduction. Seed dispersal is a key interaction that influences a number of ecological processes that are important to the maintenance of diversity in forest ecosystems. Rodents, mainly considered as seed predators, can carry, hide and discard seeds, often transporting them over considerable distances from the parent tree and thus leading to an enhanced germination rate. The role of rodents on forest regeneration therefore depends upon several environmental variables influencing their behavior. Literature. Many publications demonstrate that rodents are mostly seed predators for many species. Nevertheless, because it is hard to define their movement pattern, the role of rodents on regeneration could be underestimated. Through scatter-hoarding, rodents may play a crucial role, particularly in those forests where anthropogenic pressures have led to a reduction in the density of large mammals. However, very few studies have been conducted in African moist forests where defaunation can be high, and the role of rodents has been very poorly studied. Conclusions. To understand the phenomenon, we suggest to further investigate the interactions between seeds and rodents by employing methods that have been commonly used on other continents. [less ▲]

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See detailA look at Intact Forest Landscapes and their relevance to Central African forest policy
Haurez, Barbara ULiege; Daïnou, Kasso ULiege; Vermeulen, Cédric ULiege et al

Conference (2017, February)

Tropical forests are important providers of natural resources and ecosystem services but their ecological functions are facing increasing human pressure, linked to economic development. The preservation ... [more ▼]

Tropical forests are important providers of natural resources and ecosystem services but their ecological functions are facing increasing human pressure, linked to economic development. The preservation of tropical forest ecosystems is interrelated with effective land use planning and identification of priority areas for conservation. Initially defined by Greenpeace and the World Resources Institute (WRI) in 2000, Intact Forest Landscapes (IFLs) are large areas of forest minimally impacted by human activities. IFLs were identified by mapping industrial activities, road networks and infrastructure using remote sensing. Since 2014, when IFLs were recognized and adopted by the certification scheme Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), the IFLs have become integrated into forest management policies. In order to trace the history and evaluate the applicability of IFLs for forest management policy in the Central African context, we searched for documents related to the IFL method, and previous similar concepts. The IFL method is simple and cost-effective and enables the monitoring of forest degradation at a global scale. However, the approach mainly considers forest cover and is imprecise at the local scale. For example, hunting, one of the main threats faced by Central African ecosystems, cannot be detected by satellite imagery and is therefore disregarded in IFL identification processes. In contrast, there are other considered anthropogenic activities, such as reduced-impact selective logging, which may be compatible with forest ecosystem conservation. To better tailor the IFL approach to Central African forests, we recommend (i) the consideration of wildlife communities distribution in the analysis of disturbance, (ii) a thorough evaluation of the impacts of different human activities on forest ecosystems, and (iii) the integration of local stakeholders and governments in the design of land management strategies devised to address social, economic and environmental needs. [less ▲]

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See detailA look at Intact Forest Landscapes and their relevance in Central African forest policy
Haurez, Barbara ULiege; Daïnou, Kasso ULiege; Vermeulen, Cédric ULiege et al

in Forest Policy and Economics (2017), 80

Tropical forests are major providers of natural resources and ecosystem services but their ecological functions are at threat, due to increasing human pressure linked to economic development. The ... [more ▼]

Tropical forests are major providers of natural resources and ecosystem services but their ecological functions are at threat, due to increasing human pressure linked to economic development. The identification of priority areas for conservation is crucial for land use planning to ensure the protection of biodiversity and ecological function. Intact Forest Landscapes (IFLs), as defined by Greenpeace and World Resources Institute (WRI), are areas of the forest ecosystems not subjected to human activities. They have beenidentified by mapping human disturbances through remote sensing. Contrary to similar global-scale concepts, IFLs have been integrated into the standards of the certification body Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) and therefore have practical implications for forest management policies. The Motion 65, approved in the general assembly of FSC in 2014, mandates the protection of IFLs located in FSC certified logging concessions. Until the implementation of national standards, forestry operations are banished from 80% of the IFL area within each forest management unit. To trace the history and evaluate the suitability of IFLs in the Central African context, we searched for documents related to the IFL method, and related approaches focusing on the identification of areas devoid of human disturbances. The IFL method is simple and cost-effective and allows for a global assessment of the influence of human infrastructures and industrial exploitation on forests However, the method does not consider the situation below the canopy and those forest components not visible by satellites. For example, hunting, one of the main threats faced by wildlife in Central African forests today, cannot be detected with satellite imagery. On the other hand, other anthropogenic activities which remote sensing may detect may be compatible with forest ecosystem conservation. To better tailor the IFL approach to Central African forests, we recommend (i) the consideration of wildlife communities in the intactness analysis, (ii) a thorough evaluation of the impacts of human activities on forest ecosystems, and (iii) the integration of local stakeholders and governments in the design of land management strategies to respond to social, economic and environmental needs [less ▲]

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See detailHautes Valeurs de Conservation (HVC) dans les Unités Forestières d'Aménagement du Cameroun : concepts, choix et pratiques
Daïnou, Kasso ULiege; Bracke, Charles; Vermeulen, Cédric ULiege et al

Book published by Presses Agronomiques de Gembloux (2016)

Le système de certification FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) vise à promouvoir la gestion durable des forêts. Il repose sur un ensemble de normes dont une est particulièrement complexe à mettre en oeuvre ... [more ▼]

Le système de certification FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) vise à promouvoir la gestion durable des forêts. Il repose sur un ensemble de normes dont une est particulièrement complexe à mettre en oeuvre en Afrique Centrale, le principe 9 traitant des Hautes Valeurs de Conservation (HVC). Ce principe devrait être interprété aux échelons nationaux afin de prendre en compte les spécificités de chaque pays. Bien que des ouvrages aient déjà été élaborés par diverses organisations, aucun ne cible particulièrement les grandes concessions forestières. Au Cameroun, ces concessions ou Unités Forestières d’Aménagement (UFA), représentent pourtant 40 % du domaine forestier national. Le présent guide ambitionne de fournir aux acteurs de la gestion forestière au Cameroun les connaissances les plus pertinentes afin de leur permettre d’identifier, de gérer et de suivre les Hautes Valeurs de Conservation dans les UFA. Il se démarque des précédents guides par plusieurs points : (i) une revue bibliographique détaillée est fournie sur le sujet épineux de l’identification de chaque HVC, et l’opinion des auteurs y est mise en exergue; (ii) la démarche d’identification est appuyée par les références les plus pertinentes, évitant au gestionnaire de se disperser dans sa quête de documentation; (iii) sur la base de leur expérience, les auteurs proposent une série de menaces pouvant affecter les HVC, de mesures de gestion et d’indicateurs de suivi. L’approche développée se base sur des méthodes empiriques et pragmatiques d’une part et, d’autre part, sur des études scientifiques. Cet ouvrage devrait constituer une base intéressante pour une interprétation solide des HVC au Cameroun. De plus, bien que ciblant les UFA camerounaises, il pourrait inspirer d’autres acteurs forestiers œuvrant dans le Bassin du Congo. [less ▲]

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See detailSeed Dispersal by Western Lowland Gorillas: from Fruits to Seedlings
Haurez, Barbara ULiege

in Gorilla Journal Journal of Berggorilla & Regenwald Direkthilfe (2016), 52

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See detailWestern lowland gorilla an logging companies A winning duo ?
Haurez, Barbara ULiege; Petre, Charles-Albert ULiege; Brostaux, Yves ULiege et al

Conference (2016)

The critically endangered western lowland gorilla (WLG) disperses the seeds of many fruits. These seeds are often deposited at gorilla nest sites, in open-canopy habitats favorable for seedling growth and ... [more ▼]

The critically endangered western lowland gorilla (WLG) disperses the seeds of many fruits. These seeds are often deposited at gorilla nest sites, in open-canopy habitats favorable for seedling growth and recruitment. However, considering anthropogenic disturbances, such as logging, gorillas and the directed seed dispersal services they provide are at risk. On the other hand, sustainably managed logging concessions are reported to harbor viable gorilla populations. If WLG provide effective dispersal of timber species, it would be of benefit to loggers for these ecological services to be preserved. In order to explore such interactions between the WLG and the timber industry, we (1) assessed the status of a WLG population in a logging concession, and (2) investigated their seed dispersal effectiveness for timber species. We inferred the long-term viability of a gorilla population in a Gabonese logged forest, and the short-term impact of timber harvesting on this population. Gorilla density was estimated through three successive censuses: (1) 25 years after the first felling cycle, (2) six months and (3) one year after the second felling cycle. Seed dispersal effectiveness for timber species was estimated through gorilla fecal analysis and germination trials in a nursery. The results suggested that a viable population of WLG could be maintained in selectively logged forests (< 2 cut trees ha-1). Indeed, although gorillas tend to flee areas being actively exploited for timber, their densities in logged forests can regain their initial levels, or even a higher one, within one year post-logging. Over a period of 20 months, the seeds of 59 plant species were found in gorilla feces. Nearly 20 % of the identified species (N=35) are of economic value because of their exploitation for timber. Analyzed fecal units contained on average 81.0 ± 107.8 intact seeds (0-566). Specific germination success varied from 0 to 100 %, with an average of 46 ± 36 %. Sustainably-managed logging concessions may host viable populations of WLG. Considering the seed dispersal services provided for timber species and the unique directed-dispersal to open-canopy habitats, gorillas are implicated in the regeneration and maintenance of logged forests. Therefore, the generalization of sustainable logging would be beneficial both to the economical and the environmental value of tropical forests, thus providing an incentive for loggers and governments to prevent illegal hunting in concessions. [less ▲]

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See detailShort term impact of selective logging on a western lowland gorilla population
Haurez, Barbara ULiege; Tagg, Nikki; Petre, Charles-Albert ULiege et al

in Forest Ecology & Management (2016), 364

Selective timber production is implemented over a large proportion of the world’s tropical forests. Within these forest ecosystems, the frugivore community contributes important ecological services ... [more ▼]

Selective timber production is implemented over a large proportion of the world’s tropical forests. Within these forest ecosystems, the frugivore community contributes important ecological services through animal-mediated seed dispersal. However, there is no clear understanding of the impacts of logging on wildlife or of the extent to which seed dispersal is preserved in logged forests. Given its tendency for nesting in light gaps, the western lowland gorilla is likely to provide directed-dispersal services to a wide range of tree species. Production forests preserved from poaching have been reported to harbor high densities of gorillas, but the monitoring of gorilla populations subjected to logging is poorly documented. This study investigated gorilla density and nesting behavior after timber exploitation in a logging concession in southeast Gabon. Nest count censuses were performed on line transects, before and after the second felling cycle. Gorilla density dropped from 1.5 (116.7 nests km 2, 95% CI = 83.4–163.5) to 1.0 (64.9 nests km 2, % CI = 32.6–129.5) weaned gorilla km 2 4–6 months after logging, then rose to 2.6 (176.3 nests km 2, 95% CI = 113.5–274.1) gorillas km 2 9–11 months after logging. A consistent preference for nesting in open canopy terra firma forest was observed during all censuses. This study demonstrates the short-term resilience of the western lowland gorilla to selective timber harvesting, and argues that they offer a continued contribution to directed-dispersal services within months after logging. Although a long-term monitoring of gorillas in a logged forest should be undertaken, the role of this species in logged forest recovery is thought to be important. The preservation of gorilla should receive particular consideration by forest managers. [less ▲]

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See detailRôle du gorille des plaines de l’Ouest (Gorilla gorilla gorilla) dans la régénération des forêts denses humides et interaction avec l’exploitation sélective de bois d’oeuvre
Haurez, Barbara ULiege

Doctoral thesis (2015)

According to the IUCN, the western lowland gorilla (Gorilla gorilla gorilla Savage & Wyman) is a critically endangered species. This species would play an important role in tropical forest dynamics ... [more ▼]

According to the IUCN, the western lowland gorilla (Gorilla gorilla gorilla Savage & Wyman) is a critically endangered species. This species would play an important role in tropical forest dynamics. Indeed, its highly frugivorous diet and its large body mass would result in the implication of gorilla in the seed dispersal of many plant species. Moreover, by building its nest sites in open canopy forest, it would deposit the majority of seeds in habitats displaying potentially suitable light condition for their germination and for the subsequent seedling development. However, given the expansion of timber exploitation in Central Africa, ecological services dispensed by gorilla could be threatened. The objective of this thesis is to characterize the impacts of timber exploitation on gorilla populations and the role of these populations in forest regeneration after logging. The results demonstrate that a viable population of gorilla may be maintained in selectively logged forests (< 2 trees ha-1). Indeed, although gorillas tend to flee areas during timber exploitation activities, their density in logged forest reaches its initial value, or even a higher level, within one year after the end of logging. The preferential selection of open canopy forest areas for nesting was verified, before and after logging. The deposition of seeds in habitats providing favorable light conditions is therefore confirmed, even though the preference for tree fall gaps and forest skid trails was not observed in the course of the monitoring period (one year after logging). The seeds of 59 plant species were found in gorilla feces collected over a period of 20 months. A quarter of these species presented an economically value because of their use as timber or non-timber forest products. The analyzed fecal units contained between one and six different seed species, and on average 81.0 ± 107.8 intact seeds (0-566). Depending on the species considered, germination success varied from 0 to 100 %, with an average of 46 ± 36 %. The gorilla is the main disperser of a timber species, Dacryodes normandii. Over the fructification period, the gorilla consumed fruits of this species in 87.8 % of its visits (of an average length of 85 ± 89 min.). The impact of gut passage was evaluated for two tree species, Santiria trimera and Chrysophyllum lacourtianum. These species displayed higher germination successes after gorilla ingestion because of both pulp suppression and seed coat scarification. In addition, a positive effect of fecal matrix on seedling development was observed for three studied species, S. trimera, C. lacourtianum and Plagiostyles africana. Finally, the development of seedlings is favored in nesting sites, the most frequent seed deposition sites. Two studied species, S. trimera and Dacryodes normandii displayed a growth between two and ten times faster in nest sites than in closed canopy forest. Therefore, gorilla is implicated in directed seed dispersal. Consequently, when poaching is absent, western lowland gorilla populations seem to be resilient to selective logging and they play a critical role in the seed dispersal process, both quantitatively and qualitatively, in logged forests. Some recommendations to improve the management of logged forest that host gorilla populations were proposed in order to favor their preservation within logging concessions. In particular, the generalization of reduced impact logging practices is advisable. [less ▲]

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See detailIs western lowland gorilla a good gardener? Effect of fecal matrix and deposition at nest sites on seedling growth
Haurez, Barbara ULiege; Brostaux, Yves ULiege; Petre, Charles-Albert ULiege et al

Conference (2015, June 25)

The Western lowland gorilla is a key dispersal agent, which disperses viable seeds of various size. In consequence of its nesting behavior, gorilla deposits half of its feces, and therefore about half of ... [more ▼]

The Western lowland gorilla is a key dispersal agent, which disperses viable seeds of various size. In consequence of its nesting behavior, gorilla deposits half of its feces, and therefore about half of dispersed seeds, at nest sites. This study was conducted in a logging concession of southeast Gabon where 78 % of the observed nest sites (n=183) were installed in open canopy terra firma forest. The aim of this research was to assess if seed deposition by gorillas (i) in fecal matrix and (ii) at nest sites is advantageous for seedling growth. To assess the effect of fecal matrix, seeds of Santiria trimera (Burseraceae), Chrysophyllum lacourtianum (Sapotaceae) and Plagiostyles africana (Euphorbiaceae) collected in gorilla feces were sown with and without fecal matrix in a nursery at the study site. The impact of seed deposition at nest sites on seedling growth was evaluated in situ. Seedlings of Santiria trimera and Dacryodes normandii (Burseraceae) were installed at nest sites and at closed canopy terra firma forest sites. For both type of trials, seedling growth was monitored. [less ▲]

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See detailQuantity and spatial distribution of seeds dispersed by a western lowland gorilla population in south-east Cameroon
Petre, Charles-Albert ULiege; Tagg, Nikki; Beudels-Jamar et al

in Journal of Tropical Ecology (2015), 35(03), 201-212

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See detailDifferences in dung beetle activity at western gorilla defecation sites in south-east Cameroon: implications for establishment of Uapaca spp. seedlings
Petre, Charles-Albert ULiege; Zinque, Marie-Hélène; Tagg, Nikki et al

in Journal of Tropical Ecology (2015), 31(02), 161-174

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See detailWestern lowland gorilla seed dispersal: Are seeds adapted to long gut retention times?
Petre, Charles-Albert ULiege; Tagg, Nikki; Beudels-Jamar, Roseline et al

in Acta Oecologica: International Journal of Ecology (2015), 67

The degree of seed scarification in the frugivore gut, partly dependent on gut retention time, is a key component in determining the extent to which gut passage alters germination performances. Another ... [more ▼]

The degree of seed scarification in the frugivore gut, partly dependent on gut retention time, is a key component in determining the extent to which gut passage alters germination performances. Another potential benefit of gut passage arises as a result of the removal of fruit pulp which otherwise may act as a germination inhibitor. Using experiments designed to disentangle the respective effects of pulp removal (germination deinhibition) and seed scarification, and gut retention time as an explanatory variable, we investigated the effect of gut passage on germination performances (percentage and latency) of five tropical tree species dispersed by the western lowland gorilla (Gorilla g. gorilla). The percentage of seeds germinating after gut passage increased for three species, respectively, through the effects of scarification only, deinhibition only, and scarification and deinhibition combined. A negative scarification effect was observed for one species, and no effect of gut passage for another. Passage through the gut led to a decrease in germination latency of three species, as a result of the depulping of seeds. However, seed scarification resulted in germination delays for another species. The gut retention time of the five species averaged 39e56 h and had no effect on intra-specific germination performances except for one species whose germination probability increased as gut retention time increased. As gut retention time often correlates with dispersal distance, the fact that gut retention time per se does not reduce seed viability of these tropical tree species may have positive implications for their population dynamics and maintenance of genetic diversity. If no detrimental effect of gut retention time on germination performance is a general trait among tropical species, the extirpation of large frugivores with long gut retention time, such as the western lowland gorilla, would likely have negative long-term implications for tropical forests. [less ▲]

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See detailIs the western lowland gorilla a good gardener ? Evidence for directed dispersal in Southeast Gabon
Haurez, Barbara ULiege; Brostaux, Yves ULiege; Petre, Charles-Albert ULiege et al

in Bois et Forêts des Tropiques (2015), 324(2), 39-50

In Central African tropical forests, the western lowland gorilla deposits most of the seeds it disperses in well-lit nesting sites that can favour seedling growth. The faecal matrix surrounding the seeds ... [more ▼]

In Central African tropical forests, the western lowland gorilla deposits most of the seeds it disperses in well-lit nesting sites that can favour seedling growth. The faecal matrix surrounding the seeds can act as a fertiliser and further enhance seedling development. This fertilisation effect had never been tested. Our research therefore aimed to determine whether seed deposition by gorillas (i) in faecal matter and (ii) in nest sites is advantageous for seedling development (growth rate and foliation rate) and survival (% of surviving seedlings). To assess the effect of the faecal matrix, seeds of Santiria trimera (Burseraceae), Chrysophyllum lacourtianum (Sapotaceae) and Plagiostyles africana (Euphorbiaceae) collected from gorilla faeces were sown in a nursery with and without a faecal matrix. Seedlings of Santiria trimera and Dacryodes normandii (Burseraceae) were established in nest sites and in closed canopy terra firme forest sites to assess the impact of seed deposition on seedling development and survival. The faecal matrix was observed to positively influence seedling development in the species studied, but showed no effect on survival. Regarding seed deposition sites, the development rates observed were two to ten times higher in the nest sites than in closed-canopy forest. This enhanced seedling development was positively correlated with canopy openness. In situ studies of seed germination, seedling growth and survival are needed to characterise the fate of gorilla-dispersed seeds more precisely. However, our results offer evidence that gorillas provide important directed dispersal services by depositing seeds most frequently in open canopy sites. [less ▲]

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See detailThe role of great apes in seed dispersal of the tropical forest tree species Dacryodes normandii (Burseraceae) in Gabon
Haurez, Barbara ULiege; Daïnou, Kasso ULiege; Tagg, Nikki et al

in Journal of Tropical Ecology (2015), 31(05), 395-402

The identification of seed dispersers and predators is essential to understand the effect of anthropogenic disturbances, and the associated defaunation process, on tropical forest dynamics in Central ... [more ▼]

The identification of seed dispersers and predators is essential to understand the effect of anthropogenic disturbances, and the associated defaunation process, on tropical forest dynamics in Central Africa. In this study, the animals involved in seed predation and dispersal of Dacryodes normandii (Burseraceae), an endozoochorously dispersed tree species endemic to Gabonese forests, were identified in a site in south-east Gabon using two complementary methods: direct observation and camera-trap monitoring of fruit piles. The combined sampling effort (172 h of direct observations and 796 d of camera trapping) led to the identification of six disperser and eight predator species of D. normandii seeds. With high frequency of consumption (88% and 57% of their visits, respectively) and long visit duration (83 and 23 min, respectively), the western lowland gorilla and central chimpanzee were identified as the main dispersers of this species. Seeds passed through the gorilla gut exhibited high germination success (68%). Rodents were identified as predators of D. normandii seeds, potentially displaying rare secondary dispersal through scatter-hoarding. The results of this study highlight the importance of great apes in the seed dispersal of this tree species. [less ▲]

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See detailSeed dispersal by western lowland gorillas: what about gut passage effect?
Haurez, Barbara ULiege; Petre, Charles-Albert ULiege; Doucet, Jean-Louis ULiege

Conference (2014, July 21)

Animal-mediated seed dispersal is an essential ecological process in the tropics. Among African primates, the critically endangered western lowland gorilla (WLG) seems to fulfill many characteristics of ... [more ▼]

Animal-mediated seed dispersal is an essential ecological process in the tropics. Among African primates, the critically endangered western lowland gorilla (WLG) seems to fulfill many characteristics of an effective seed disperser. WLG preferentially disperses species of various seed-size into open canopy habitats suitable for seedling growth. However, few studies have addressed the effects of the passage through the digestive tract on germination. Thus, the effectiveness of WLG in ecological processes governing forest dynamics and regeneration is still poorly known. Seed dispersal by WLG was studied in Central Gabon and Southeast Cameroon. Dispersed seed were identified from fresh fecal samples. Comparative germination trials based on 5 treatments (seeds from fresh fruits, seeds from fresh fruits surrounded by pulp, seeds from fresh fruits with fecal matrix, seeds from feces and seeds from feces with fecal matrix) were realized for 13 species. We recorded germination success for all species and germination delay for 6 species. Our results suggest a neutral gut passage effect for 54% and positive effect for 40% of tested species. Germination success enhancement was linked to another factor than pulp suppression. For two species, pulp suppression enhanced germination success, but not gut passage. The presence of pulp or fecal matrix surrounding the seed seemed to longer germination delay, while gut passage would not fasten germination. Globally, we conclude that WLG dispersed seeds are not damaged by gut passage. Consequently, WLG is thought to provide effective ecological services that could be essential to the maintenance and the recovery of forest ecosystems. [less ▲]

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See detailWestern lowland gorilla in a logging concession: comparison of density and nesting behavior before and after logging
Haurez, Barbara ULiege; Petre, Charles-Albert ULiege; Doucet, Jean-Louis ULiege

Conference (2014, May 22)

Timber exploitation is rapidly expanding throughout the Congo Basin. In Gabon, timber industry is currently the second working sector and logging concessions cover 45% of the country forest area, largely ... [more ▼]

Timber exploitation is rapidly expanding throughout the Congo Basin. In Gabon, timber industry is currently the second working sector and logging concessions cover 45% of the country forest area, largely overlapping with the range of western lowland gorilla (Gorilla gorilla gorilla WLG). Logging may negatively impact gorilla because of an increase in hunting pressure linked to human concentration and easier access to forest. On the other hand, WLG might benefit from forest opening and the associated growth in Terrestrial Herbaceous Vegetation, following timber felling and roads/trails implementation. In the present study, gorilla density and nesting behavior were studied in a 617,000-ha logging concession located in Central Gabon. A Standing Crop Nest Count census was realized 25 years after the first timber harvesting cycle, consisting in the assessment of the potentiality of logged forest to hold viable WLG populations. A second census was undertaken four to six months after the second logging wave. Comparing nesting behavior and estimated gorilla density between the two census allows to highlight the short-term effects of logging on gorilla populations. A relatively high WLG density was observed during the first census (2.1 weaned gorillas/km²). This figure dropped down to 1.0 weaned gorillas/km² after the second felling cycle. Both density values fall within the range of documented WLG densities documented at other sites. Gorillas consistently nested preferentially in open terra firme forest and built the majority of their nests using herbs of the Marantaceae and Zingiberaceae families. Both these observations underline the importance of Terrestrial Herbaceous Vegetation for nesting. The results of this study suggest that timber exploitation and WLG conservation are not mutually exclusive. The initial high density might traduce an effective anti-poaching strategy for now. The decline in gorilla density observed directly in the second census is probably linked with the avoidance of the disturbance of logging operations. Monitoring the evolution of WLG density would be important in order to control if the figure will rise over time to reach its initial value, but also to assess if a positive effect of Terrestrial Herbaceous Vegetation growth will be observed. [less ▲]

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