Aims Vegetation classification consistent with the Braun‐Blanquet approach is widely used in Europe for applied vegetation science, conservation planning and land management. During the long history of syntaxonomy, many concepts and names of vegetation units have been proposed, but there has been no single classification system integrating these units. Here we (1) present a comprehensive, hierarchical, syntaxonomic system of alliances, orders and classes of Braun‐Blanquet syntaxonomy for vascular plant, bryophyte and lichen, and algal communities of Europe; (2) briefly characterize in ecological and geographic terms accepted syntaxonomic concepts; (3) link available synonyms to these accepted concepts; and (4) provide a list of diagnostic species for all classes. Location European mainland, Greenland, Arctic archipelagos (including Iceland, Svalbard, Novaya Zemlya), Canary Islands, Madeira, Azores, Caucasus, Cyprus. Methods We evaluated approximately 10 000 bibliographic sources to create a comprehensive list of previously proposed syntaxonomic units. These units were evaluated by experts for their floristic and ecological distinctness, clarity of geographic distribution and compliance with the nomenclature code. Accepted units were compiled into three systems of classes, orders and alliances (EuroVegChecklist, EVC) for communities dominated by vascular plants (EVC1), bryophytes and lichens (EVC2) and algae (EVC3). Results EVC1 includes 109 classes, 300 orders and 1108 alliances; EVC2 includes 27 classes, 53 orders and 137 alliances, and EVC3 includes 13 classes, 24 orders and 53 alliances. In total 13 448 taxa were assigned as indicator species to classes of EVC1, 2087 to classes of EVC2 and 368 to classes of EVC3. Accepted syntaxonomic concepts are summarized in a series of appendices, and detailed information on each is accessible through the software tool EuroVegBrowser. Conclusions This paper features the first comprehensive and critical account of European syntaxa and synthesizes more than 100 yr of classification effort by European phytosociologists. It aims to document and stabilize the concepts and nomenclature of syntaxa for practical uses, such as calibration of habitat classification used by the European Union, standardization of terminology for environmental assessment, management and conservation of nature areas, landscape planning and education. The presented classification systems provide a baseline for future development and revision of European syntaxonomy.
Recent technological developments have increased the number of variables being monitored in lakes and reservoirs using automatic high frequency monitoring (AHFM). However, design of AHFM systems and posterior data handling and interpretation are currently being developed on a site-by-site and issue-by-issue basis with minimal standardization of protocols or knowledge sharing. As a result, many deployments become short-lived or underutilized, and many new scientific developments that are potentially useful for water management and environmental legislation remain underexplored. This Critical Review bridges scientific uses of AHFM with their applications by providing an overview of the current AHFM capabilities, together with examples of successful applications. We review the use of AHFM for maximizing the provision of ecosystem services supplied by lakes and reservoirs (consumptive and non consumptive uses, food production, and recreation), and for reporting lake status in the EU Water Framework Directive. We also highlight critical issues to enhance the application of AHFM, and suggest the establishment of appropriate networks to facilitate knowledge sharing and technological transfer between potential users. Finally, we give advice on how modern sensor technology can successfully be applied on a larger scale to the management of lakes and reservoirs and maximize the ecosystem services they provide.
2018): Distributions of vascular plants in the Czech Republic. Part 7. -Preslia 90: 425-531.The seventh part of the series on the distributions of vascular plants in the Czech Republic includes grid maps of 104 taxa in the genera Anthriscus, These maps were produced by taxonomic experts based on examined herbarium specimens, literature and field records. Many of the studied native species are on the national Red List. The genus most affected by decline in abundance is Gentianella, which includes six taxa extirpated from this country and six taxa critically threatened. Another group with a high proportion of endangered species comprises aquatic and wetland plants, which are represented by Callitriche hermaphroditica, Hydrocharis morsusranae, Najas minor, Pseudognaphalium luteoalbum and Stratiotes aloides. Other ecologically specialized groups include mainly montane wetland plants (Epilobium anagallidifolium, E. nutans and Rubus chamaemorus) and plants of rocky habitats (Polypodium interjectum, Trichomanes speciosum and Woodsia ilvensis). The previously rare Woodsia alpina has been extirpated from this country. Alien species mapped in this paper include both archaeophytes and neophytes, mainly from the genera Anthriscus, Cochlearia, Elodea, Epilobium, Hordeum and Phleum. Cochlearia danica, Dittrichia graveolens and Limonium gmelinii have recently colonized habitats along the roads treated by de-icing salt. Senecio inaequidens has also spread mainly along motorways. Epilobium adenocaulon is another successful neophyte; it is now widespread throughout this country and the most successful hybrid parent within the genus. Neophyte aquatics are represented by Egeria densa, Elodea canadensis and E. nuttallii. Spatial distributions and often also temporal dynamics of individual taxa are shown in maps and documented by records included in the Pladias database and available in electronic appendices. The maps are accompanied by comments that include additional information on the distribution, habitats, taxonomy and biology of the taxa. K e y w o r d s:
Aims: Most vegetation classification systems developed for large areas include various inconsistencies. Therefore, we (1) propose a new consistent Cocktailbased approach to redefine the traditional phytosociological classification of species-poor vegetation; (2) apply it to create a classification protocol for aquatic vegetation;(3) implement this protocol in a computer expert system; and (4) test it with a data set previously classified using an older version of the Cocktail method. Methods:The new approach uses formal logic to provide formal definitions of vegetation units. In the classification protocol for aquatic vegetation we defined consistent criteria for delimitation of associations according to the concepts that are predominantly used in phytosociology, based on species cover, dominance patterns and functional species groups. We applied these criteria in a computer expert system running in the JUICE 7.0 program, and applied them to a test data set of 12 171 vegetation plots from the Czech Republic containing at least one aquatic species. The new classification was compared with (1) the previous national Cocktail classification based on species cover values and in few cases on sociological species groups, and (2) a non-formalized expert-based classification.Results: Thirteen functional species groups were created to build logical formulas of 64 aquatic associations and 5297 (44% of the total data set) vegetation plots were assigned to these associations, i.e. by 4% and 12% more than in the previous Cocktail and expert-based classifications, respectively. There was 94% and 83% classification agreement with the previous Cocktail and expert-based classification. Conclusions:The new approach produces a formal, consistent and unequivocal classification of species-poor vegetation with several advantages over similar approaches. It provides not only a set of formal definitions of vegetation units, but also a set of rules for building such definitions. All associations with common characteristics are defined by structurally identical formulas, ensuring consistency of the classification. While similar approaches for species-rich vegetation use sociological species groups, which are not applicable to species-poor vegetation, the new approach introduces the use of functional species groups, which reflect vegetation physiognomy and spatial structure and, in combination with species dominance, enable the classification of species-poor vegetation in a similar manner as in traditional phytosociology.
Aims To create a comprehensive, consistent and unequivocal phytosociological classification of European marsh vegetation of the class Phragmito‐Magnocaricetea. Location Europe. Methods We applied the Cocktail method to a European data set of 249,800 vegetation plots. We identified the main purposes and attributes on which to base the classification, defined assignment rules for vegetation plots, and prepared formal definitions for all the associations, alliances and orders of the class Phragmito‐Magnocaricetea using formal logic. Each formula consists of the combination of “functional species groups”, cover values of individual species, and in the case of high‐rank syntaxa also of “discriminating species groups” created using the Group Improvement (GRIMP) method. Results The European Phragmito‐Magnocaricetea vegetation was classified into 92 associations grouped in 11 alliances and six orders. New syntaxa (previously invalidly published according to the International Code of Phytosociological Nomenclature) were introduced: Bolboschoeno maritimi‐Schoenoplection tabernaemontani, Glycerio maximae‐Sietum latifolii, Glycerio notatae‐Veronicetum beccabungae, Schoenoplectetum corymbosi and Thelypterido palustris‐Caricetum elongatae. Based on a critical revision, some other syntaxa were rejected or excluded from the class Phragmito‐Magnocaricetea. Conclusions This work provides the first consistent classification of the class Phragmito‐Magnocaricetea at the European scale, which is an important tool for nature conservation. Our classification largely respects previously existing concepts of syntaxa, but it also proposes modifications to the recently published EuroVegChecklist. This work also provides a protocol that can be used for extending the current classification to new syntaxa and geographical regions.
Vegetation of ephemeral wetlands (class Isoëto-Nano-Juncetea) was studied in the Czech Republic and Slovakia using a formalised classifi cation approach. We analysed a set of phytosociological relevés recorded in the study region comprising 17583 relevés of wetlands and some types of ruderal vegetation. Formal defi nitions of particular associations were completed using a dataset of 1580 relevés, originally assigned by their authors into the Isoëto-Nano-Juncetea class. 770 of these relevés were classifi ed into one of the three alliances (Verbenion supinae, Eleocharition ovatae and Radiolion linoidis) and nine associations: Ranunculetum lateriflori (south-eastern Slovakia), Cerastio-Ranunculetum sardoi (mainly southern Slovakia and southern Moravia), Veronico anagalloidis-Lythretum hyssopifoliae (southern Moravia), Pulicario vulgaris-Menthetum pulegioidis (southern parts of both republics, especially in Slovakia), Polygono-Eleocharitetum ovatae (mainly southern Bohemia and the Bohemian-Moravian Uplands in the Czech Republic), Cyperetum micheliani (both republics), Stellario uliginosae-Isolepidetum setaceae (mainly in southern Bohemia and Bohemian-Moravian Uplands in the Czech Republic, less frequently in Slovakia), Centunculo-Anthoceretum punctati (only two relevés in both republics) and Junco tenageiae-Radioletum linoidis (southern Bohemia in the Czech Republic, Borská lowland in western and Orava region in northern Slovakia). The main environmental gradient of the studied vegetation expressed by Ellenberg indicator values (EIV) is moisture (Spearman correlation coeffi cient with the fi rst DCA axes-0.666, p < 0.001), followed by light (-0.656, p < 0.001). Comparison of clusters based on EIV showed signifi cant differences in several cases, mainly: 1) the signifi cantly lowest EIV for temperature was detected for Stellario uliginosae-Isolepidetum setaceae and Junco tenageiae-Radioletum linoidis; 2) Polygono-Eleocharitetum ovatae had the highest EIV for moisture; and 3) Junco tenageiae-Radioletum linoidis had the lowest EIV for nutrients. Our study is one of the fi rst attempts at formal classifi cation of Isoëto-Nano-Juncetea vegetation in a relatively large area and to compare the ecology of the communities defi ned by this approach.
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