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Mechanical Abrasion and Intercrown Spacing
Francis E. Putz, Geoffrey G. Parker and Ruth M. Archibald
The American Midland Naturalist
Vol. 112, No. 1 (Jul., 1984), pp. 24-28
Published by: The University of Notre Dame
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2425452
Page Count: 5
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The crowns of neighboring trees of similar height do not interdigitate but rather are generally separated by spaces called "crown shyness" gaps. In a black mangrove (Avicennia germinans) forest in Costa Rica, the width of crown shyness gaps was positively correlated with the distance pairs of trees or branches adjacent to the gap swayed in the wind (n = 22; p<.01). Abrasion of buds, leaves and branches due to trees knocking into one another seems to create and maintain the spaces around each tree crown.
The American Midland Naturalist © 1984 The University of Notre Dame