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Understanding tree architectural plasticity is a major challenge. Functional-structural models can be of great interest to quantify the allocation patterns and their changes according to environment. In this paper, we focus on Acacia tortilis trees in savanna to understand their responses to herbivore attacks both in terms of architecture and allocation pattern. Measurements were carried out in Hwange National Park (Zimbabwe) in 2008. Architectural and biomass data were analysed to quantify the effects of herbivore attacks on plant morphogenesis, and trees were gathered in two groups depending on the intensity of herbivore attacks they suffered. Based on these results, a simple model of herbivore attacks has been implemented and parameters have been estimated in the framework of the GreenLab model and we simulate different realistic behaviours according to the intensity of herbivore attacks.
Date of Conference: 9-13 Nov. 2009