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Stand Analysis of an Invading Firetree (Myrica faya Aiton) Population, Hawaii

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Title:Stand Analysis of an Invading Firetree (Myrica faya Aiton) Population, Hawaii
Authors:Smathers, Garrett A.
Gardner, Donald E.
Date Issued:Jul 1979
Publisher:University of Hawaii Press
Citation:Smathers GA, Gardner DE. 1979. Stand analysis of an invading firetree (Myrica faya Aiton) population, Hawaii. Pac Sci 33(3): 239-255.
Abstract:Since 1971, the exotic firetree (Myricafaya) has been invading a
native ohia tree (Metrosideros collina subsp. polymorpha Rock) habitat in the
1959 Kilauea Iki devastation area, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Ninetysix
trees of the invading population were analyzed as to structural and fruiting
Data were collected from two permanent transects that were designed to
provide for continued study of the fire tree and ohia community.
Initial findings reveal that the present firetree spread depends on an outside
seed source, and successful seedling establishment is dependent on favorable
microhabitat conditions beneath ohia trees. As yet, no competitive replacement
of ohia trees by fire trees has been observed. On the contrary, firetrees
over 2 m tall that had grown up and into ohia tree crowns were exhibiting
poor vigor. Additionally, there is a high positive correlation between fire tree
loss of vigor and diameter increase beyond 4-5 em.
Preliminary observations suggest that fire tree seed dispersal depends on
birds, primarily, the exotic Japanese white-eye (Zosterops japonica).
Appears in Collections: Pacific Science Volume 33, Number 3, 1979

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