Full Length Research Paper
A demographic study of a mangrove palm; Nypa fruticans on Carey Island in Malaysia was conducted for 16 months. Four life stages were considered, based on the number of crown leaves: seedling, juvenile, adult and mature. The population structure of N. fruticans showed a majority of adults with 67.9%, while seedlings were the least represented. Density ranged from 1025 to 6400 plants per hectare. A total of 162 germinated seeds were observed, but only 3 became established within the plots, while the rest were washed away by high water. Seedlings, juveniles, adults and mature plants all showed a mainly regular spatial distribution pattern. Seedlings produced 2.9 leaves per year while juvenile, adult and mature plants produced about 1 leaf each per year. Leaf elongations for juvenile, adult and mature specimens were 55.5, 81.0 and 91 cm per month, respectively. Total mean age was estimated at 33.2 years. The flowering cycle lasted between 8.2 - 9.6 months with an annual rate of 1.1 and 1.0 inflorescences and infructescences per tree, respectively.
Key words: Population, spatial distribution, growth, age, reproductive phenology, nipah.
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