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Regional species pools of hay meadows: A case study

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Abstract:

Questions: Is it possible to render the species pool concept operational for cultural landscape management and restoration?

Location: Hordaland and Sogn & Fjordane counties, western Norway.

Methods: An initial regional species list, based on information on the distribution of species and habitats in the Norwegian flora, was filtered using information on target communities and species lists from 95 sites in the region. Owing to the importance of both mowing and grazing Ellenberg indicator values were not used in the identification process.

Results: The final regional species pool consisted of 227 species, of which 194 were extracted from the flora, while 33 agricultural landscape species were added from the actual pool or from a list of species in additional hay meadows. Some of the 33 species were regular inhabitants of hay meadows, others were rare in the region. The regional species pool list includes information on each species on demands when hydrology, nutrients and base saturation in the soil is concerned, and whether or not they are characteristic for either of the boreal or boreo-nemoral vegetation zones.

Conclusions: Specialist knowledge was an advantage when adding cultural landscape species other than meadow species of the flora; 77 species were documented only by the flora, interesting from the point of view of restoration as this part of the pool would not have been found by just adding species lists. The diversity of the now isolated hay meadow sites in the region may be kept up by replacing the lost natural invasion by an artificial one, using local seed mixtures and transplants.

Keywords: ACTUAL POOL; DRY MEADOW; LIGHT-DEMANDING SPECIES; RESTORATION; SORENSENRS SIMILARITY INDEX; VEGETATION ZONE; WET MEADOW

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: September 1, 2007

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