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Experimental Restoration of Mesic and Wet Forests in Former Pastureland, Kahuku Unit, Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park

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Title: Experimental Restoration of Mesic and Wet Forests in Former Pastureland, Kahuku Unit, Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park
Authors: McDaniel, Sierra
Loh, Rhonda
Dale, Susan
Yanger, Corie
LC Subject Headings: Hawaii Volcanoes National Park (Hawaii)
Forest restoration -- Hawaii -- Hawaii Island.
Forest ecology -- Hawaii -- Hawaii Island.
Rain forests -- Hawaii -- Hawaii Island.
Issue Date: Jul 2011
Publisher: Pacific Cooperative Studies Unit, University of Hawaii at Manoa
Citation: McDaniel S, Loh R, Dale S, Yanger C. 2011. Experimental restoration of mesic and wet forests in former pastureland, Kahuku Unit, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Honolulu (HI): Pacific Cooperative Studies Unit, University of Hawaii at Manoa, Department of Botany. PCSU Technical Report, 175. 26 pages.
Series/Report no.: Technical Report
Abstract: The Kahuku unit of Hawaii Volcanoes National Park (HAVO) contains seven thousand acres of former forest that was converted to pasture for grazing cattle. There were several phases of forest clearing and pasture development (Parker Ranch 1912-1947, James Glover 1947-1958, and Damon Estate 1958-2000) creating an open pasture with scattered native trees and small remnant stands of native species. In 2005, methods to facilitate forest recovery were tested in four ungulate-proof exclosures (four hectares each). Within the exclosures, three temporary grass removal treatments (herbicide, soil turnover, and herbicide/soil turnover) were tested with the objective of finding a method that best promoted native forest recovery in conjunction with ungulate exclusion. In addition to monitoring plant recruitment from the natural seed bank in the soil, establishment by direct seeding and planting of native species in the different treatments was evaluated. By year one, rapid re-establishment of alien grasses occurred in all removal treatments, but was slowest in plots that received a combination of soil turnover and herbicide. Natural native plant recovery was evident in all grass removal treatments with a limited number of seedlings in the untreated grass control. Plant establishment from direct seeding for koa and pilo was highest in the combination soil turnover and herbicide treatment. No seedlings of Pipturus albidus (māmaki), Cheirodendron trigynum (‘ōlapa), Coprosma pubens (pilo), Myoporum sandwicense (naio) and very few Acacia koa (koa) and Metrosideros polymorpha (‘ōhi‘a) were observed outside of ungulate-proof exclosures. Planted seedling survival was moderate to high with no significant differences among sites and treatments (57-70%). Based on these results, temporary suppression of alien grasses in conjunction with ungulate exclusion can facilitate recovery of native species once abundant in the Kahuku region.
Description: Reports were scanned in black and white at a resolution of 600 dots per inch and were converted to text using Adobe Paper Capture Plug-in.
Rights: CC0 1.0 Universal
Appears in Collections:The PCSU and HPI-CESU Technical Reports 1974 - current

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