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Term Forest

Ecosystem where the dominant species are woody (trees and shrubs) that have sprouted spontaneously, giving way to different processes and ecological relationships. Their surface area exceeds 0.5 hectares, with a crown cover of over 25% of that area. Forests are determined by the presence of trees with a minimum height of five meters and of young stands that have not yet reached a crown density of 10% or a height of five meters. The term includes forests used for production, protection, conservation or multiple other uses. Forests provide wood and/or wood products that are either timber-yielding or not, while they also provide environmental services.

Among the various classification systems for vegetation in the Dominican Republic, the two most popular are the Holdridge system, published in 1947, and the Hager and Zanoni system, published in 1993.

Vegetation classification by Holdridge is based on life zones, which are land areas clustered according to their bioclimatic patterns. It divides vegetation into the following groups:

• Subtropical thorn scrub
• Subtropical dry forest
• Dry forest transitioning to moist forest
• Subtropical humid forest
• Subtropical wet forest
• Subtropical rain forest
• Lower montane moist forest
• Lower montane wet forest
• Lower montane rain forest
• Montane wet forest

The Hager and Zanoni classification system takes into account the most distinctive  characteristics of ecosystems and species,1,2 and divides the vegetation into the following groups:

Another forest classification system used has been that which classifies forests according to the predominant vegetation.3 Under that system, forests in the Dominican Republic are grouped as follows:

All of the above classifications have contributed to the understanding and study of Dominican vegetation, especially the Hager and Zanoni classification system, which was published in 1993 in the Moscosoa journal of the national Botanical Garden, and has been used as a reference for plant classification in diverse flower studies in the country.

1. Hager, J.; Zanoni, T.A. La Vegetación Natural de la República Dominicana. Moscosoa. 1993, 7, 39-81.

2. Llibre, C; Quírico, M; Ramos, H. Atlas de Biodiversidad de la República Dominicana; Santillana: Santo Domingo, DO., 2006.

3. Secretaría de Estado de Medio Ambiente y Recursos Naturales. Atlas de los Recursos Naturales de la Republica Dominicana; Editora Búho: Santo Domingo, DO., 2004.



Additional Information
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PhotoBosque seco - Parque Jaragua
PhotoBosque de humedales - Manglares
LinkForest classification according to the characteristics of ecosystems and species
LinkForest classification according to the predominant vegetation
Topic  BiodiversityProtected areasLegal and Institutional