Laurie Rolle

Tel.: 05 90 48 30 30

Fax: 05 90 43 34 35

email: Laurie.Rolle at


PhD at UMR EcoFoG

Identification and functioning of Lesser-Antille riparian forest : Application to land management of hydrological networks in Martinique.

In this thesis we lead a botanical and ecological synthesis of Lesser-Antille riparian forests by studiying the local river influence on the composition of forest species and forest structure.
According to Naiman et al. (2010), riparian forests developped in interface area between fresh water and the terrestrial area out of the river influence, at the lower part of the valley close to the river.
Small islands like Lesser Antilles have been negatively impacted by the destructive effect of human settlement in forest areas. In the volcanic islands with high relief, human pressure is concentrated on the river delta and mainly on the valley where riparian forest expands.
Scientific studies on Lesser-Antille riparian forests are scarse (Lalubie, 2010).
Locally, few studies deal with riparian forests, and they treat of forest closed to river in the general study of altitudinal forest’s variation (Pagney & Joseph, 2001) (Martin et al., 2007).
Indeed, they do not consider the influence of river on the forest’s composition.
However, on a global scale, scientific studies show that riparian forest provides many services to human societies : it resists flooding disturbance and other river risks (erosion, water sanitary problems…)
Riparian forest maintains biodiversity allowing movement of species through the different altitudianel zone of the forest. They are many other services which help protect the well-being and the economic system of human’s societies.
This is why the study of land management is inextricably tied to the research of riparian forests.

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