Modelling fires as pulses in tree/grass interactions: study of long-term impact in forest-savanna dynamical systems

Tchuinte Tamen Alexis, Dumont Yves, Bowong Samuel, Tewa Jean Jules, Couteron Pierre. 2015. Modelling fires as pulses in tree/grass interactions: study of long-term impact in forest-savanna dynamical systems. Biomath Communications, 2 (1), Résumé, 1 p. International Conference on Mathematical methods and Models in Biosciences and Young Scientists School, Pretoria, Afrique du Sud, 12 July 2015/17 July 2015.

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Abstract : It is usually admitted that fires play an important role in tree-grass interactions in savanna ecosystems. In this talk, we present a model of tree-grass dynamics using impulsive differential equations, considering fires as discrete events [1]. This framework allows us to carry out a comprehensive qualitative mathematical analysis that revealed more possible outcomes than the analogous continuous model [2]. We investigated local and global properties of the equilibria and show that various states may co-exist. Though fire periodicity may drive the system to different and abrupt shifts between vegetation, we also show that direct shading of grasses by trees, through a facilitation/competition parameter, is an influential process too, leading to bifurcations. Finally, using a suitable numerical approach [3], we carried out numerical simulations related to three main climatic zones, observable in Central Africa, to illustrate our theoretical results. (Texte intégral)

Mots-clés Agrovoc : Savane, forêt tropicale, Incendie de forêt, Herbage, Arbre d'ombrage, Compétition biologique, Dynamique des populations, Modèle mathématique, Méthode statistique

Mots-clés géographiques Agrovoc : Afrique centrale

Mots-clés libres : Mathematical modelling, Savanna, Fire, Impulsive differential equation, Periodic equilibrium, Nonstandard finite difference method

Classification Agris : U10 - Computer science, mathematics and statistics
K01 - Forestry - General aspects
F40 - Plant ecology

Champ stratégique Cirad : Axe 6 (2014-2018) - Sociétés, natures et territoires

Auteurs et affiliations

  • Tchuinte Tamen Alexis, IRD (CMR)
  • Dumont Yves, CIRAD-BIOS-UMR AMAP (FRA) ORCID: 0000-0003-4817-685X
  • Bowong Samuel, UMMISCO (CMR)
  • Tewa Jean Jules, UMMISCO (CMR)
  • Couteron Pierre, IRD (FRA)

Source : Cirad-Agritrop (

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