Print version ISSN 0366-5232
ALVEAR, MARCELA; BETANCUR, JULIO and FRANCO-ROSSELLI, PILAR. Floristic diversity and structure of Andean forests remnants near to Los Nevados National Park, Central Colombian Andes. Caldasia [online]. 2010, vol.32, n.1, pp. 39-63. ISSN 0366-5232.
The diversity, structure, and floristic composition of the Andean forests remnants at Torre Cuatro Reserve were characterized. This reserve is part of the buffer zone of Los Nevados National Park, Central Cordillera of the Andes in Colombia. The forest remnants were grouped into three zones according to the altitude: low (between 2650 and 2900 m), medium (between 3000 and 3300 m), and high (between 3400 and 3750 m). In each zone, 0.1 ha was sampled and all individuals with DBH = 2.5 cm were surveyed. The species richness found in the zones (62 in low, 69 in medium, 48 in high) was higher compared to that found in other forests with similar altitudes. In all zones the largest proportion of individuals had heights less than 7.2 m. Floristic composition and physiognomy of the zones shows that the forest of low and middle zones correspond to those described as the characteristic Andean forest, while the high zone corresponds to the high Andean forest. In all areas the most ecologically important families were Melastomataceae and Asteraceae, but some other families were also important, such as Cunoniaceae in the low zone, Betulaceae in the middle and Ericaceae in the high zone. In all altitudes a few species were most ecologically significant in the community (IVI); in the medium and low zones only five species accumulated approximately 30% of the IVI, while in the high zone five species accumulated 47%. The species with the highest IVI were Weinmannia pubescens (32.7) in the low zone, Alnus acuminata (29.9) in the medium zone and Tibouchina andreana (33.4) in the high zone.
Keywords : Andes; Cloud forest; Colombia; Floristic diversity; Montane forest.