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Publication Type J
Authors Schroder, H. K., K. Kiehl and M. Stock
Title Directional and non-directional vegetation changes in a temperate salt marsh in relation to biotic and abiotic factors
Source Applied Vegetation Science
Author Keywords evenness fluctuation Redundancy Analysis sheep grazing species richness Wadden Sea zonation GRADIENT SEA COMMUNITIES HALOPHYTES HERBIVORY DYNAMICS SALINITY ZONATION
Abstract The effects of reduction and cessation of sheep grazing on salt-marsh vegetation were studied on a formerly intensively grazed salt marsh in northern Germany. Plant species cover was recorded in 45 permanent plots from 1992 to 2000. In 1995, physical and chemical soil parameters were analysed. Results of Redundancy Analysis (RDA) indicated that salinity and the depth of anoxic conditions below the surface were the most important soil factors related to the spatial vegetation pattern. Furthermore, plant species distribution was influenced by present and past grazing intensity, by soil grain size and nitrogen content. Vegetation changes over 9 yr were analysed by non-linear regression. The cover of Aster tripolium, Atriplex portulacoides, and, to a lesser extent, Artemisia maritima and Elymus athericus increased due to reduced grazing pressure. whereas the cover of Salicornia europaea decreased. After a strong increase in the first years Aster decreased 2 to 6 yr after abandonment. In the mid salt-marsh zone Puccinellia maritima was replaced by Festuca rubra. The cover of Puccinellia, Festuca, Suaeda maritima, Glaux maritima and Salicornia fluctuated strongly, probably due to differences in weather conditions and inundation frequency. Species, richness per 4 m(2) generally increased while vegetation evenness decreased during the study period. Only in the high salt marsh abandoned for 9 yr did the number of species decrease slightly. Thus far, cessation of grazing did not lead to large-scale dominance of single plant species.
Author Address Univ Erlangen Nurnberg, Inst Geog, D-91054 Erlangen, Germany. Tech Univ Munich, D-85350 Freising Weihenstephan, Germany. Natl Pk Schleswig Holstein Wadden Sea, D-25829 Tonning, Germany. Schroder, HK (reprint author), Univ Erlangen Nurnberg, Inst Geog, Kochstr 4-4, D-91054 Erlangen, Germany. henning.schroeder@geographie.uni-erlangen.de
ISSN 1402-2001
ISBN 1402-2001
Publication Date May
Year Published 2002
Volume 5
Issue 1
Beginning Page 33-44
Digital Object Identifier (DOI) 10.1658/1402-2001(2002)005[0033:dandvc]2.0.co;2
Unique Article Identifier WOS:000176407800004
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