Morphological analysis of herbaceous communities under different grazing regimes

Morphological analysis of herbaceous communities under different grazing regimes Abstract. A methodology for the morphological analysis of herbaceous communities is presented, together with an example of its application in montane grasslands in the province of Córdoba (Argentina) subject to grazing and burning. The method, based on multivariate ordination and classification techniques, enabled the detection of morphological changes at three levels in response to disturbance: (a) characterization of the spatial structure of the vegetation; (b) identification of morphological plant groups; and (c) quantification of morphological shifts among different individuals of a single species. The architecture of the vegetation changed toward a progressive miniaturization of photosynthetic structures and concentration of biomass close to the ground, as disturbance intensity increased. Six morphological plant groups (modes of response) showing different behaviour in relation to competition for light and pressure from large herbivores were identified. Some species, highly preferred by ungulate grazers, showed high morphological variability among morphs growing in different grazing situations, whereas some others were morphologically uniform. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Vegetation Science Wiley

Morphological analysis of herbaceous communities under different grazing regimes

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Publisher
Wiley
Copyright
1992 IAVS ‐ the International Association of Vegetation Science
ISSN
1100-9233
eISSN
1654-1103
DOI
10.2307/3235837
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Abstract. A methodology for the morphological analysis of herbaceous communities is presented, together with an example of its application in montane grasslands in the province of Córdoba (Argentina) subject to grazing and burning. The method, based on multivariate ordination and classification techniques, enabled the detection of morphological changes at three levels in response to disturbance: (a) characterization of the spatial structure of the vegetation; (b) identification of morphological plant groups; and (c) quantification of morphological shifts among different individuals of a single species. The architecture of the vegetation changed toward a progressive miniaturization of photosynthetic structures and concentration of biomass close to the ground, as disturbance intensity increased. Six morphological plant groups (modes of response) showing different behaviour in relation to competition for light and pressure from large herbivores were identified. Some species, highly preferred by ungulate grazers, showed high morphological variability among morphs growing in different grazing situations, whereas some others were morphologically uniform.

Journal

Journal of Vegetation ScienceWiley

Published: Oct 1, 1992

References

  • Growth forms and phenomorphology traits along an environmental gradient: tools for studying vegetation?
    Floret, Floret; Galan, Galan; LeFloc'h, LeFloc'h; Orshan, Orshan; Romane, Romane
  • The maintenance of species richness in plant communities: the importance of the regeneration niche
    Grubb, Grubb
  • Adaptation of ecological systems: compositional patterns of species and morphological and functional traits
    Montalvo, Montalvo; Casado, Casado; Levassor, Levassor; Pineda, Pineda
  • The evolution of the phenotypic plasticity in plants
    Schlichting, Schlichting

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