Shan hills pine savanna



Pine savanna is an open to closed evergreen needleleaf savanna ecosystem that occurs in four to five regions across Myanmar, with each currently being a separate ecosystem given geographical barriers between them. Further investigation is needed to identify the major features that distinguish these regional variants. Shan hills pine savanna can be found in the rolling hills of Shan State and extends into western Thailand and southern China (ECVMC-CAS, 2007). The ecosystem tends to occur on hill tops, where it is more exposed to drying than surrounding evergreen or semi-evergreen forests. Pines have a grassy understory, and require fire for natural regeneration, and can be invaded from other forest types when fire is suppressed (Ratnam et al., 2016). In many areas Shan hills pine savanna may be a secondary forest with canopy <15 m (Several similar pine savannas occur throughout Myanmar, including in the Chin Hills, Sagaing Region and Kachin State.

Assessment summary

Shan hills pine savanna is broadly distributed across Shan, and also occurs in neighbouring countries. A climate simulation model suggests that suitable environmental conditions for this ecosystem may reduce in area over the next 30 years, although further work is suggested to confirm this assessment outcome. Primary forest data suggests widespread degradation of this ecosystem has occurred since 1750, with only 16% of this ecosystem estimated to remain in a primary state. Endangered