Effect of climate change on the spatial distribution and cork production of Quercus suber L., the risk of exclusion by the Aleppo pine expansion, and management practices to protect Q. suber habitat: A review

  • Kaouther MECHERGUI University of Carthage, National Institute of Research in Rural Engineering, Waters and Forests, B.P. 10, Hédi Karray Street, Menzeh IV, Ariana 2080
  • Wahbi JAOUADI University of Carthage, National Institute of Research in Rural Engineering, Waters and Forests, B.P. 10, Hédi Karray Street, Menzeh IV, Ariana 2080; University of Jendouba, Silvo-Pastoral Institute of Tabarka, B.P. 328, 8110 Tabarka
  • Amal S. ALTAMIMI Princess Norah Bint Abdulrahman University, Biology Department, College of Science Riyadh
  • Souheila NAGHMOUCHI University of Carthage, National Institute of Research in Rural Engineering, Waters and Forests, B.P. 10, Hédi Karray Street, Menzeh IV, Ariana 2080
  • Youssef AMMARI University of Carthage, National Institute of Research in Rural Engineering, Waters and Forests, B.P. 10, Hédi Karray Street, Menzeh IV, Ariana 2080
Keywords: Aleppo pine; climate change; cork oak; cork production; expansion; management practices; potential distribution


Climate change represents an important challenge for forest management and the silviculture of stands and it is known that climate change will have complex effects on cork oak forest ecosystems. North Africa and the Mediterranean basin are especially vulnerable to climate change. Under the effect of climate change, cork oak will disappear from a large area in the future, and the rest will migrate to higher altitudes and latitudes. This study aimed to evaluate the effect of climate change on the spatial distribution of Quercus suber L. and cork production in the Mediterranean area, and the risk of its exclusion by the Aleppo pine (Pinus halepensis Mill.) expansion. The literature review showed that up to 40% of current environmentally suitable areas for cork oak may be lost by 2070, mainly in northern Africa and the southern Iberian Peninsula. Temperature directly influences atmospheric evaporative demand and should affect cork productivity. Precipitation is the main factor that positively influences cork growth and several authors have confirmed the negative effect of drought on this growth. Currently, cork oak habitats are colonized in several places mainly by the Aleppo pine. Under climate change, Aleppo pine is projected to occupy higher altitude sites and several authors have predicted that current and future global warming will have a positive influence on Aleppo pine growth in wet sites. In the future and under climate change, there is a strong possibility that the Aleppo pine will colonize cork oak habitat. Finally, we proposed management practices to protect cork oak against climate change and Aleppo pine expansion.


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How to Cite
MECHERGUI, K., JAOUADI, W., ALTAMIMI, A. S., NAGHMOUCHI, S., & AMMARI, Y. (2021). Effect of climate change on the spatial distribution and cork production of Quercus suber L., the risk of exclusion by the Aleppo pine expansion, and management practices to protect Q. suber habitat: A review. Notulae Botanicae Horti Agrobotanici Cluj-Napoca, 49(1), 12218. https://doi.org/10.15835/nbha49112218
Review Articles
DOI: 10.15835/nbha49112218