Section 6
Chapter 5,211

Ecological studies on a sahelian savanna of the northern ferlo senegal preliminary observations on commiphora africana

Poupon, H.

Terre et la Vie 31(1): 127-162


Accession: 005210815

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The standing crop biomass and net primary production of C. africana (Rich.) Engl. were studied in the sahelian savanna of northern Senegal from 1971-1975. The distribution of the trees over a 25 ha protected area was described and the influence of the micro-relief emphasized. The aboveground and belowground biomasses of trees of different, ages were compared. In young trees the belowground biomass is more important than the aboveground biomass: the reverse is true in older trees. In those having 20-30 growth rings, the root biomass still represented about half of the total tree biomass. C. africana is a fast-growing species in comparison to Acacia senegal of the same age (28-29 growth rings). Its biomass can represent more than 3 times that of the Acacia. The phenology of the species was described. There is no correlation between the onset of the vegetative period and the date of the 1st rains. Leaf production is variable from year to year and is influenced by the annual rainfall. After the severe drought of 1972, most of the 1973 leaf production was eaten by grasshoppers. An estimate of standing crop biomass and net production for trees aged 0-60 rings, was given for the 1973.

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