As noted above, individuals of any one species tend to be fairly widely dispersed within the forest. Because of this, plants must disperse their pollen over relatively great distances. Large forest trees may be fertilized by pollen from trees more than 140 away (and very frequently, even farther), even though there may be numerous individuals of that species in the intervening area (Chase, et al., 1996). Thus the “breeding population” of a species can be dispersed over a very large area, and may consist of more than 750 individuals, in the case of figs (Nason, Herre & Hamrick, 1998). This has implications for forest preservation planning. More information on reproduction may be found in sections on flowering (see II E3) and animal roles in pollination and seed dispersal (see II F1).

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