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Phytosociological Structure of Iğneada Region in NW Thrace (Turkey)

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Iğneada region is located in the NW Thracian part of Turkey nearly 12km from the Bulgarian national border (Fig. 32-1). It constitutes the planar and choline parts of the Yıldız (Stranja) mountains and it is bordered by the Black Sea in the east. The rivers coming down from the upper parts of Yıldız Mountain reach the sea and lakes by dividing the topography of İğneada region. This has a crucial effect on vegetation coverage and the ecosystem diversity of the region which consequently determines the biological diversity.

The region has been declared as one of the most important plant diversity areas in Turkey (Özhatay et al. 2003) because of its rich biological and ecological diversity. Also as a result of this richness, the region was the subject of two European Supported Projects – the GEF II project and the Yıldız Mountains Biogenetic Reserve Project- which focused on the knowledge production about natural resources in the region for their sustainable management and conservation.

Floodplain Forests, thermophilous oak forests, lakes, swamps and sand-dunes are the main components of ecosystems’ richness in the region. Each of these vegetation types reflects different diversity and plays a part in the richness of the region. In this sense, we aimed to explain the biological diversity of the Igneada region by introducing the phytosociological structure of each vegetation type in this work.

The forests in the region can be grouped into two parts: floodplain forests covering the flat areas and thermophilous oak forests surrounding the floodplains on inclined fields. The research results (Kavgacı, 2007a) showed this difference between forest vegetation types in the region (Fig. 32-2).

Floodplain Forests: The ecological, biological, environmental and economic values of floodplain forests are well understood today (Pivec 2002). Floodplain forests are a widely known community type where species composition and community structure change locally along with varying flooding frequency and duration (Tepley et al. 2004). These forests represent specific ecosystems adapted to the specific site water regime, are characterized by high ground water which is variable in the course of growing seasons due to frequent floods (Čermák et al. 2001) and from this point of view İğneada Region shows a rich structure.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: January 1, 2011

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