A numerical analysis of the mesoscale distribution patterns of vascular plants in the subarctic Kevo Nature Reserve, northern Finland
The floristic variation detected reflects variations in environmental factors operative at the regional and local scales. No major broad-scale coherent geographical patterns were detected; instead, the spatial distribution of the grids with a similar floristic composition shows a scattered distribution. All the numerical techniques reveal a major gradient from alpine areas to lowland sites with rivers and rocky outcrops, and the most important explanatory variables for predicting the main floristic variation are all associated with altitude. The floristic patterns represented by the second ordination gradient mainly correlate with the abundance of mires. Partial ordinations indicate that both the geographical and geological variables explain relatively little of the species distributional patterns.
Although the meso-scale approach reveals much about the plant-environment relationships in the study area, the floristic variation appears to be determined mainly by fine-scale factors. In the most heterogeneous grids, the grid size used fails to detect accurately the ecological patterns of the species present.
Document Type: Original Article
Affiliations: , Botanical Institute, University of Bergen, Allégaten 41, N-5007 Bergen, Norway, and Environmental Change Research Centre, Department of Geography, University College, London, 26 Bedford Way, London WC1H OAP, U.K.
Publication date: 1998-01-01