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Publication Type J
Authors Watson, E. B. and R. Byrne
Title Abundance and diversity of tidal marsh plants along the salinity gradient of the San Francisco Estuary: implications for global change ecology
Source Plant Ecology
Author Keywords Climate change Environmental conditions Species diversity Vegetation cover Salinity SEA-LEVEL RISE CALIFORNIAN SALT-MARSH LONG-TERM SALINITY NORTHERN CALIFORNIA CLIMATE-CHANGE HABITAT CHANGE JAMAICA-BAY VEGETATION WETLAND USA
Abstract From 2003 through 2005, tidal marsh plant species diversity and abundance on historically surveyed vegetation transects along the salinity gradient of the San Francisco Estuary were investigated to establish empirical relationships between plant distributions and environmental conditions, and furthermore to examine and predict past and future plant distribution changes. This study suggests that for most species, salinity is the primary control on plant distribution. Thus, ongoing changes in estuarine conditions (increasing sea level and salinity) are resulting in a complex mix of plant distribution changes. On the low marsh, where sediment salinity is similar to that of ambient water, halophytic species are replacing salt-intolerant taxa. However, on marsh plains, where increased tidal flooding is moderating high salinity (concentrated by evaporation), halophytic "high marsh" species are being replaced by salt-intolerant "low marsh" taxa. Thus, future changes in plant distributions will hinge on whether marsh sediment accumulation keeps pace with sea level rise.
Author Address [Watson, Elizabeth Burke] Univ Calif Davis, Dept Land Air & Water Resources, Davis, CA 95616 USA. [Watson, Elizabeth Burke; Byrne, Roger] Univ Calif Berkeley, Dept Geog, Berkeley, CA 94720 USA. Watson, EB, Univ Calif Davis, Dept Land Air & Water Resources, 228 Veihmeyer Hall,1 Shields Ave, Davis, CA 95616 USA. elizabeth.b.watson@gmail.com
ISSN 1385-0237
ISBN 1385-0237
29-Character Source Abbreviation Plant Ecol.
Publication Date Nov
Year Published 2009
Volume 205
Issue 1
Beginning Page 113-128
Digital Object Identifier (DOI) 10.1007/s11258-009-9602-7
Unique Article Identifier ISI:000270289200009
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