Skip to main content
padlock icon - secure page this page is secure

Vegetation regeneration on blanket mire after mechanized peat-cutting

Buy Article:

$69.00 + tax (Refund Policy)


  •  Blanket mire in Northern Ireland is an ecologically threatened habitat in which land use for hand peat-cutting, forestry and agriculture has had a major influence. A recent land use change is the introduction of tractor-powered peat-harvesting. In this paper, the effect of machine peat-cutting on ombrotrophic blanket mire vegetation is assessed from a regional sample of cut and uncut plots.

  • Principal components analysis identified water-table depth and grazing intensity as major factors influencing the species composition of uncut mire. A key variable affecting the composition of machine-cut mire across the drainage gradient was the number of times cut, with multiple annual cutting causing progressive decreases in acrotelm depth, catotelm bulk density and plant cover. Ericaceous species and Sphagnum spp. were particularly sensitive to cutting, with Eriophorum angustifolium and Campylopus introflexus characteristic of multiple-cut sites.

  • Redundancy analysis, with number of times cut partialled out, showed that recovery time accounted for a significant amount of variance in vegetation composition. Species that significantly increased in abundance with recovery time were Sphagnum spp., Odontoschisma sphagni , Erica tetralix and Drosera rotundifolia.

  • Sites cut frequently, or which were grazed, recovered more slowly. Recovery from cutting was partly dependent on the post-cutting structure of the mire surface and the species that survive cutting. The rate of recovery on sites cut once, then abandoned, is relatively rapid compared with multiple-cut sites where species colonization is constrained by bare compacted peat.
  • No References
    No Citations
    No Supplementary Data
    No Article Media
    No Metrics

    Keywords: Calluna; PCA; RDA; Sphagnum; grazing intensity; partial analysis; peatland exploitation; regional sampling; vegetation recovery; water-table depth

    Document Type: Research Article

    Affiliations: 1: School of Environmental Studies, University of Ulster, Cromore Road, Coleraine, Northern Ireland, BT52 1SA, U.K. 2: Environment and Heritage Service, Department of the Environment for Northern Ireland, Belfast, U.K.

    Publication date: May 1, 2001

    • Access Key
    • Free content
    • Partial Free content
    • New content
    • Open access content
    • Partial Open access content
    • Subscribed content
    • Partial Subscribed content
    • Free trial content
    Cookie Policy
    Cookie Policy
    Ingenta Connect website makes use of cookies so as to keep track of data that you have filled in. I am Happy with this Find out more