Primary and secondary succession

The savanna on fire: a natural process of ecological succession.
Ecological successions can be characterized from the adaptation potential of pioneer communities in previously uninhabited environments, or by their replacement by others, with a better tendency to balance, establishing a climax community according to abiotic factors: temperature, humidity, insolation, rainfall and others, lasting for several decades, a few centuries or thousands of years.

Normally, the colonizing species are grasses or other small plants, with spores or seeds transported by the winds, settling in inhospitable places, enduring climatic adversities (unstable soil, scarcity of water and intense heat), opening the way for the population of other organisms.

Thus, primary succession is understood to be that which occurs in barren (lifeless) regions, for example, land covered by lava overflow and flow, rocks exposed by glacier retreat, volcanic islands or sand dunes.

It is secondary in already inhabited places whose balance has been disrupted due to drastic environmental changes, whether or not caused by humans.

This condition configures the scenario observed in abandoned plantations, forests destroyed by fires and lakes that have dried up, with the vegetation being partially or completely destroyed.

In the cerrado biome, ecological successions alternate as a result of natural fire events, seasonally recomposing this phytophysiognomy.

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