Do Mixed Fire Regimes Shape Plant Flammability and Post-Fire Recovery Strategies?


Access the paper here. The development of frameworks for better-understanding ecological syndromes and putative evolutionary strategies of plant adaptation to fire has recently received a flurry of attention, including a new model hypothesizing that plants have diverged into three different plant flammability strategies due to natural selection. We provide three case studies of pyromes/taxa (Pinus, the Proteaceae of the Cape Floristic Region, and Eucalyptus) that, contrary to model assumptions, reveal that plant species often exhibit traits of more than one of these flammability and post-fire recovery strategies. We propose that such multiple-strategy adaptations have been favoured as bet-hedging strategies in response to selective pressure from mixed-fire regimes experienced by these species over evolutionary time.