Applied Vegetation Science

Cover image for Vol. 18 Issue 2

April 2015

Volume 18, Issue 2

Pages 177–356

  1. Commentaries

    1. Top of page
    2. Commentaries
    3. Research Articles
    1. You have free access to this content
      Habitat restoration requires landscape-scale planning (pages 177–178)

      Aveliina Helm

      Article first published online: 12 MAR 2015 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12159

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      Habitat restoration cannot be considered simply as an act of re-creating the original environmental conditions and biota, neglecting the significance of the context of the surrounding landscape and overlooking the need to recreate metapopulation dynamics for target species. In this issue, Prach and colleagues show the importance of the availability of target species in the surrounding landscape to achieve successful restoration.

    2. You have free access to this content
      Accessing habitats first helps less when your competitors themselves have help (pages 179–180)

      Andrew J. Tanentzap

      Article first published online: 12 MAR 2015 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12167

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      Species that arrive early into a new habitat influence the interspecific interactions of later arrivals, thereby shaping the structure, functioning, and evolutionary potential of biological communities. Burkle & Belote (Applied Vegetation Science, this issue) show that the advantage conferred to pioneer species by earlier access is reduced in the presence of soil mutualists, offering important lessons for restoration.

  2. Research Articles

    1. Top of page
    2. Commentaries
    3. Research Articles
    1. Landscape context in colonization of restored dry grasslands by target species (pages 181–189)

      Karel Prach, Karel Fajmon, Ivana Jongepierová and Klára Řehounková

      Article first published online: 21 OCT 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12140

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      We consider the strongest point of our paper is the large-scale of the study. We are not aware of any such extensive restoration of grasslands using a species-rich regional seed mixture. The restoration was organized by our colleague Ivana Jongepierová (see photo) and without her enthusiasm the restoration, and thus this study, could not be possible to realize.

    2. Nature will have its way: local vegetation trumps restoration treatments in semi-natural grassland (pages 190–196)

      Inger Auestad, Ingvild Austad and Knut Rydgren

      Article first published online: 11 FEB 2015 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12138

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      This fine-scale semi-natural grassland restoration experiment revealed that seed influx from surroundings overrode the effect of various restoration treatments (natural regeneration, seeding of local seed mixture and transfer of local hay). Ordination analysis demonstrated rapid homogenisation of the restored vegetation. Seed influx from surrounding grasslands may support restoration, but also limits the potential for tailoring specific species composition.

    3. Changes in the fruiting landscape relax restrictions on endozoochorous tree dispersal into deforested lands (pages 197–208)

      Daniel Martínez and Daniel García

      Article first published online: 17 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12135

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      Passive reforestation is scarce and spatially constrained, as few tree seeds arrive far from remnant forest. We show how dynamism in fruiting landscapes can relax restrictions on seed dispersal into deforested areas. An increase in fruit production by isolated trees remaining within those areas influenced frugivore activity resulting in more seeds dispersed out of the forest and further from it.

    4. Land-use history and an invasive grass affect tallgrass prairie sedge community composition (pages 209–219)

      Devan Allen McGranahan, David M. Engle, John T. Mulloy, James R. Miller and Diane M. Debinski

      Article first published online: 30 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12136

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      Little research has reported on the abundance and diversity of upland grassland sedges (Cyperaceae). We found 21 species across five genera. Sedges averaged 23% of total plant cover in intact tallgrass prairie. Sedges provide substantial early-season forage for grazers. Although community composition varied with land-use history and across levels of an invasive species, diversity was unaffected by grazing history.

    5. Three decades of vegetation changes in peatlands isolated in an agricultural landscape (pages 220–229)

      Salomé Pasquet, Stéphanie Pellerin and Monique Poulin

      Article first published online: 21 OCT 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12142

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      We examined vegetation changes over three decades in temperate peatlands isolated in agricultural landscapes and affected by a recent fire. Results showed noteworthy species turnover with a significant forest cover increase in margins and post-fire succession through non-peatland to peatland species in the centre. The broader implication is that peatland conservation in highly modified landscapes must be linked to restoration.

    6. Small wetlands are critical for safeguarding rare and threatened plant species (pages 230–241)

      Sarah J. Richardson, Richard Clayton, Brian D. Rance, Hazel Broadbent, Matt S. McGlone and Janet M. Wilmshurst

      Article first published online: 30 OCT 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12144

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      Rare species are often used to prioritise sites for conservation management, yet it is unclear whether this approach yields co-benefits for all biodiversity and ecosystem properties. Using wetland plants from southern New Zealand, we found no evidence that preserving sites with rare species safeguarded community types, rare environments or large wetlands. Small wetlands were critical for safeguarding rare species.

    7. Changes in landscape composition of differently irrigated hay meadows in an arid mountain region (pages 242–251)

      Eliane Riedener, Ramona L. Melliger, Hans-Peter Rusterholz and Bruno Baur

      Article first published online: 21 OCT 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12141

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      We examined consequences of a change in irrigation technique (from traditional flooding to sprinkler irrigation) for the plant diversity of species-rich hay meadows and the surrounding landscape in an arid Swiss mountain region. The installation of sprinklers was associated with a homogenisation of the landscape. The highly structured surroundings are important for the conservation of the meadows' plant diversity.

    8. Impact of ungulate exclusion on understorey succession in relation to forest management in the Intermountain Western United States (pages 252–260)

      Burak K. Pekin, Bryan A. Endress, Michael J. Wisdom, Bridgett J. Naylor and Catherine G. Parks

      Article first published online: 1 NOV 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12145

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      Our study explores plant community responses to ungulate grazing with regards to forest management history. Trajectories of vegetation composition and diversity differ strongly in grazed versus ungrazed sites following stand thinning and prescribed fire. Grazing effects are less pronounced in later seral stages found on unmanaged sites.

    9. Managing cattle grazing and overstorey cover for the conversion of pine monocultures into mixed Mediterranean woodlands (pages 261–271)

      Yagil Osem, Tom Fogel, Yossi Moshe and Shlomo Brant

      Article first published online: 8 DEC 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12152

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      We investigated the effects of cattle grazing and overstory cover on natural regeneration in east Mediterranean pine (Pinus brutia) plantations. Pine recruitment and sapling growth were significantly promoted by grazing exclusion and overstory thinning. Recruitment of broadleaved tree species was only little affected by grazing and overstory cover but their growth was significantly enhanced following grazing exclusion and overstoy thinning.

    10. Vegetation dynamics of managed Mediterranean forests 16 yr after large fires in southeastern Spain (pages 272–282)

      Raquel Alfaro-Sánchez, Raúl Sánchez-Salguero, Jorge De las Heras, Enrique Hernández-Tecles, Daniel Moya and Francisco R. López-Serrano

      Article first published online: 15 OCT 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12137

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      Early treatments applied to post-fire regenerated P. halepensis forests of southeastern Spain, including removal of the understorey vegetation and thinning, are a suitable option to reduce fire hazards in the short term and to enhance the diversity indices when applied to very high tree density post-fire regenerated stands, even in areas with very limited resources such as semi-arid ecosystems.

    11. Long-term climate forcings to assess vulnerability in North Africa dry argan woodlands (pages 283–296)

      Francisca Alba-Sánchez, José Antonio López-Sáez, Diego Nieto-Lugilde and Jens-Christian Svenning

      Article first published online: 15 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12133

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      North African dry woodlands constitute Mediterranean climatic-ecotone ecosystems of vital importance for human livelihoods and local biodiversity. To improve the basis for managing these key ecosystems, we have selected a Tertiary relict woodland (Argania spinosa) in order to clarify the sensitivity to long-term climate change (the present, the past glacial-interglacial cycle, and under future scenarios).

    12. Post-ranching tree–grass interactions in secondary Acacia zanzibarica woodlands in coastal Tanzania – an experimental study (pages 297–310)

      Roland Cochard, Peter J. Edwards and Ewald Weber

      Article first published online: 17 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12134

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      When clearings were created in secondary Acacia zanzibarica woodlands, resprouting occurred from acacia stumps and roots, and many seedlings established. The absence of ungulate grazing allowed prolific grass growth and associated competition for water. Acacia seedlings were killed and sprout densities decreased in the dry season, partly as a result of fires. Woodlands did not readily regenerate; clearings remained.

    13. Long-term vegetation dynamics (40 yr) in the Succulent Karoo, South Africa: effects of rainfall and grazing (pages 311–322)

      Margaretha W. van Rooyen, Annelise Le Roux, Conrad Geldenhuys, Noel van Rooyen, Nadine L. Broodryk and Helga van der Merwe

      Article first published online: 24 DEC 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12150

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      The vegetation change displayed elements of both equilibrium and non-equilibrium dynamics. The directional change evident in perennial species composition, supports the equilibrium concept whereby the negative changes induced by heavy grazing were partially reversed. The annual component showed no directional change, but displayed event-driven, nonequilibrium dynamics by fluctuating in reaction to the timing and quantity of rainfall.

    14. The rise and fall of Leptospermum laevigatum: plant community change associated with the invasion and senescence of a range-expanding native species (pages 323–331)

      Luke S. O'Loughlin, Peter T. Green and John W. Morgan

      Article first published online: 8 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12131

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      Shrub invasions often alter ground layer vegetation but the permanence of these changes is sometimes unclear. The study of plant community patterns across a chronosequence of Leptospermum laevigatum invasion and senescence found that canopy gaps promoted higher species diversity and created a community composition more similar to an uninvaded state. Gaps provided increased habitat heterogeneity in an otherwise uniform landscape.

    15. Soil mutualists modify priority effects on plant productivity, diversity, and composition (pages 332–342)

      Laura A. Burkle and R. Travis Belote

      Article first published online: 21 NOV 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12149

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      In a manipulative mesocosm experiment, mycorrhizal fungi modified priority effects and productivity-diversity relationships, suggesting that pioneer species interact with soil mutualists to govern diversity, community composition, and ecosystem function. Negative effects of a non-native pioneer grass on the colonizing community were ameliorated by mycorrhizal supplements, suggesting that mycorrhizal amendments may enhance diversity of degraded sites in restoration projects.

    16. Climatic characterization of forest zones across administrative boundaries improves conservation planning (pages 343–356)

      Heather A. Klassen and Philip J. Burton

      Article first published online: 21 OCT 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/avsc.12143

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      The full climatic niche for British Columbia's Coastal Douglas-fir forest zone is determined from its mapped distribution and georeferenced plot data in the neighbouring USA. A new subzone is characterized, and the potential distribution of the extended zone is projected under a changing climate to identify climate refugia. For sensitive ecosystems with multi-jurisdictional distributions, this approach helps focus conservation efforts.