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Revista chilena de historia natural

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ROJAS-SANDOVAL, JULISSA; LOBO, JORGE A  and  QUESADA, MAURICIO. Phenological patterns and reproductive success of Ceiba pentandra (Bombacaceae) in tropical dry and wet forests of Costa Rica. Rev. chil. hist. nat. [online]. 2008, vol.81, n.4, pp.443-454. ISSN 0716-078X.

We studied the phenological patterns and the reproductive success of 103 Ceiba pentandra trees, located in the tropical dry and wet forests of the Pacific coast of Costa Rica. To determine the phenological patterns of this species we recorded leaf fall, flower and fruit production of marked trees every two-weeks from December through March over three years (2001, 2002 and 2003). We also recorded the flowering and fruiting frequencies for two more years (2000 and 2004). Our data suggest that phenological patterns of C. pentandra trees behave as irregular cycles rather than cycles fixed at supra-annual intervals, and the forest type in which the trees are located does not have a decisive effect on either the probability or the frequency of the reproductive cycles. The absence of a pattern of negative autocorrelations in qualitative reproductive success (e.g., no reproduction, only flowers and fruits) among successive years suggests that the flowering or fruiting cycles of this species do not correspond to a simple model of resource limitation. Our results show that there is no relationship between the reproductive success and the periodicity of the reproductive cycles in this species.

Keywords : Ceiba pentandra; Costa Rica; reproductive success; supra-annual phenology.

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