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Ecology of the Southern Conifers

Edited by Neal J. Enright and Robert S. Hill
Melbourne University Press, 1995

Contents

Preface ......................... vii

Contributors ......................... ix

1 The Southern Conifers - An Introduction ......................... 1
NEAL J. ENRIGHT, ROBERT S. HILL and THOMAS T. VEBLEN

2 Conifer Origin, Evolution and Diversification in the Southern Hemisphere ......................... 10
ROBERT S. HILL

3 The Quaternary History of the Southern Conifers ......................... 30
A.P. KERSHAW and M. S. McGLONE

4 The Ecology of Southern African Conifers ......................... 64
J.J. MIDGLEY, W.J. BOND and C.J. GELDENHUYS

5 Community Dynamics of the New Zealand Conifers ......................... 81
JOHN OGDEN and GLENN H. STEWART

6 The Ecology of the Conifers of Southern South America ................ 120
THOMAS T. VEBLEN, BRUCE R. BURNS, THOMAS KITZBERGER, ANTONIO LARA and RICARDO VILLALBA

7 Conifer Forests of the Chilean Coastal Range ......................... 156
JUAN J. ARMESTO, CAROLINA VILLAGRAN, JUAN C. ARAVENA, CECILIA PEREZ, CECILIA SMITH-RAMIREZ, MARCO CORTES and LARS HEDIN

8 Distribution and Ecology of the Conifers of New Caledonia ......................... 171
T. JAFFRE

9 Conifers of Tropical Australasia ......................... 197
NEAL J. ENRIGHT

10 Conifers of Southern Australia ......................... 223
NEIL GIBSON, P.C.J. BARKER, P.J. CULLEN and ALISON SHAPCOTT

11 Conifers of Australia's Dry Forests and Open Woodlands ......................... 252
D.M.J.S. BOWMAN and STEPHEN HARRIS

12 The Southern Conifers - A Synthesis ......................... 271
NEAL J. ENRIGHT and JOHN OGDEN

References ......................... 288

Index ......................... 322

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Preface

The conifers of the southern hemisphere have long fascinated ecologists and natural historians. They are among the largest and most visually striking trees in the hemisphere. Their often emergent habit and unusual canopy architecture greatly enhances the aesthetic appeal of the landscapes in which they occur. The decline of the conifers and rise of anglosperms since the early Cretaceous is one of the most fundamental changes which has occurred during the history of the Earth. Many of the southern species have broad leaves, and none has the needle leaves of the northern hemisphere pines (Pinaceae) which are now so common as plantation trees in our hemisphere and typify what many lay people believe a conifer to be. The southern conifers seldom occur in extensive and dense stands like their counterparts in the boreal and mountain forests of the northern hemisphere. Most are geographically restricted, and yet many are also highly valued for their timber and other products (e.g. resins). Exploitation from the earliest days of European settlement of the southern lands, coupled with habitat conversion due to land clearance for agriculture and through the increased frequency of fire, has further reduced the abundance of many species. This book reviews the ecology of these southern conifers.

The idea for this book took shape in discussions following a workshop meeting on Comparisons of Southern Hemisphere Ecosystems organised by Peter Raven, Ebbe Nielsen and the Missouri Botanical Garden, held at the Bishop Museum in Honolulu, Hawaii, on 25 May 1991. A symposium on the southern conifers was included as part of the Southern Connection Conference organised by Bob Hill and held at the University of Tasmania in Hobart, 27-31 January 1993. However, this book is not a symposium proceedings. It is structured to provide as complete an analysis of the present state of knowledge concerning the ecology of the southern hemisphere conifers as is possible. The meeting gave us the opportunity to get many of the chapter authors together, and to float some of our ideas in front of a well informed audience. Field visits introduced our colleagues from South America, South Africa and New Caledonia to the conifers of Tasmania, affording them a broader context within which to place their own experiences. Glenn Stewart and Neal Enright subsequently visited conifer stands in Chile and Argentina and benefited greatly from the field knowledge of Juan Armesto and Thomas Veblen. Some new links across the southern hemisphere have been forged as a result of these meetings and the preparation of this book. We hope that new research projects may be initiated which further advance our understanding of the ecology and dynamics of the southern conifers.

Neal J. Enright
Robert S. Hill

Melbourne
Hobart
March 1994

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