The coexistence model (Di Paola et al., 2012) is a simple quantitative dynamic model able to explain the observed co-occurrence of sclerophyllous evergreen oak species with deciduous ones of the Mediterranean forests.

The model is formulated as a set of differential equations describing the competitive dynamic between two groups of species having different physiological responses to water stress. The work is based on a minimalistic approach in which the soil water content may act both as a limiting resource and as a chronic stress. Evapotranspiration processes, a simple hydrological balance, and a rudimentary form of competition for space are also included.

In spite of its simplicity, the model is able to explain the observed coexistence in forests of Tyrrhenian central Italy.

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Contacts

Arianna Di Paola