Effects of forest fire and logging on forest degradation in MongoliaThis article is part of a larger document. View the larger document here.
Forests in Mongolia have been severely degraded by forest fire and exploitive logging. This study investigate changes in vegetation and soil properties after forest fire or clearfelling. Microclimate conditions such as temperature and relative humidity (RH) changed drastically after forest fire or logging; temperature increased 1.6-1.7 ºC on average, whereas RH decreased up to 15.7 percent after logging. Thus, burned and logged stands became drier and it mainly affected understory species composition such as the succession of steppe xerophytes from taiga and meadow mesophytes. Soil moisture significantly decreased after forest fire or logging, and the extent of decrease was more severe in the logged stand. The chemical properties of the organic layer were significantly changed, more so than the properties of the mineral soil horizons.