seed fall

Birds and small mammals in kanuka (Kunzea ericoides) and gorse (Ulex europaeus) scrub and the resulting seed rain and seedling dynamics

Native kanuka (Kunzea ericoides) and adventive gorse (Ulex europaeus) stands aged 10-14 years, and not grazed by domestic stock, were studied near Nelson, New Zealand. The aim was to determine their use by introduced small mammals, and native and adventive birds, and the effects of these animals on seed rain and seedling dynamics as factors influencing vegetation succession. Seed traps were established where they could catch only bird-dispersed or wind-blown seed, and seedling emergence and growth were monitored.