Model predicts evolution of Mediterranean landscape following fires

This is a spatial representation of the changes in vegetation over several years if there were no fires or disturbances in the landscape. Photo credit: J. D. A. Millington et al. / SINCAn international research team has developed a mathematical and cartographical model that make it possible to view how Mediterranean landscapes evolve in the aftermath of forest fires. In order to carry out this research study, published recently in the journal Environmental Modelling & Software, the authors studied a Special Protection Area for Birds to the south west of Madrid.

"We have developed a model that shows on maps how various types of plants develop in a Mediterranean landscape, with the role of fire included as an integral feature in Mediterranean vegetation dynamics", Raúl Romero Calcerrada, a researcher in the Department of Chemical and Environmental Technology at the King Juan Carlos University in Madrid, and co-author of the study published online in the journal Environmental Modelling & Software, tells SINC.

The area studied was Special Protection Area for Birds (SPAB) number 56, which covers the Holm oak woodland along the Alberche and Cofio rivers to the south west of Madrid. "Although these results could also be extrapolated to other Mediterranean regions", Romero points out.

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