Tropical Fire Ecology

Climate Change, Land Use, and Ecosystem Dynamics

  • Mark A. Cochrane

Part of the Springer Praxis Books book series (PRAXIS)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xxxviii
  2. Fire in the tropics

    1. Mark A. Cochrane
      Pages 1-23
  3. Fire and fire ecology: Concepts and principles

    1. Mark A. Cochrane, Kevin C. Ryan
      Pages 25-62
  4. Global overview of fire in the tropics

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 63-63
    2. Ayn Shlisky, Ane A. C. Alencar, María Manta Nolasco, Lisa M. Curran
      Pages 65-83
  5. Fire in the Australian tropics

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 85-85
    2. A. Malcolm Gill, Richard J. Williams, John C. Z. Woinarski
      Pages 113-141
    3. Tom Vigilante, Tom Vigilante, Brett P. Murphy, David M. J. S. Bowman
      Pages 143-167
  6. Fire in the African tropics

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 169-169
    2. Christian A. Kull, Paul Laris
      Pages 171-226
    3. Anja A. Hoffmann, Jo-Ellen Parry, Carla Cristina Dinis Cuambe, Dominick Kwesha, Washington Zhakata
      Pages 227-259
  7. Fire in the Asian tropics

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 261-261
    2. Susan Page, Agata Hoscilo, Andreas Langner, Kevin Tansey, Florian Siegert, Suwido Limin et al.
      Pages 263-287
    3. Unna Chokkalingam, Iwan Kurniawan, Suyanto, Rizki Pandu Permana, Meilanie Buitenzorgy, Robiyanto Hendro Susanto
      Pages 355-385
  8. Fire in the South American tropics

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 387-387
    2. Heloisa Sinátora Miranda, Margarete Naomi Sato, Walter Nascimento Neto, Felipe Salvo Aires
      Pages 427-450
    3. Bibiana Bilbao, Alejandra Leal, Carlos Méndez, Maria Dolores Delgado-Cartay
      Pages 451-480
    4. Jennifer K. Balch, Daniel C. Nepstad, Lisa M. Curran
      Pages 481-502
  9. Fire in the Central American tropics

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 503-503
    2. Sally P. Horn, Maarten Kappelle
      Pages 505-539
  10. Pan-tropical fire

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 541-541
    2. Jos Barlow, Juliana M. Silveira
      Pages 543-556
    3. Ronald L. Myers, Dante Arturo Rodríguez-Trejo
      Pages 557-605
  11. Back Matter
    Pages 627-679

About this book


The tropics are home to most of the world’s biodiversity and are currently the frontier for human settlement. Tropical ecosystems are being converted to agricultural and other land uses at unprecedented rates. Land conversion and maintenance almost always rely on fire and, because of this, fire is now more prevalent in the tropics than anywhere else on Earth. Despite pervasive fire, human settlement and threatened biodiversity, there is little comprehensive information available on fire and its effects in tropical ecosystems.

Tropical deforestation, especially in rainforests, has been widely documented for many years. Forests are cut down and allowed to dry before being burned to remove biomass and release nutrients to grow crops. However, fires do not always stop at the borders of cleared forests. Tremendously damaging fires are increasingly spreading into forests that were never evolutionarily prepared for wild fires. The largest fires on the planet in recent decades have occurred in tropical forests and burned millions of hectares in several countries.

The numerous ecosystems of the tropics have differing levels of fire resistance, resilience or dependence. At present, there is little appreciation of the seriousness of the wild fire situation in tropical rainforests but there is even less understanding of the role that fire plays in the ecology of many fire adapted tropical ecosystems, such as savannas, grasslands and other forest types.


Biodiversity Ecology Fauna ecosystem ecosystem dynamics ecosystems environment savanna vegetation wetland

Authors and affiliations

  • Mark A. Cochrane
    • 1
  1. 1.South Dakota State UniversityBrookingsUSA

Bibliographic information

Industry Sectors