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Conservation of sandy calcareous grassland: what can be learned from the land use history?

Ödman, Anja LU and Olsson, Pål Axel LU (2014) In PLoS ONE 9(3).
Abstract
Understanding the land use history has proven crucial for the conservation of biodiversity in the agricultural landscape. In southern Sweden, very small and fragmented areas of the disturbance-dependent habitat xeric sand calcareous grassland support a large number of threatened and rare plants and animals. In order to find out if historical land use could explain variation in present-day habitat quality, the land use on eight such sites was traced back to the 18th century and compared with key factors such as the amount of bare sand, lime content and P availability. There was no support for the common explanation of the decline in xeric sand calcareous grassland being caused by abandonment of agricultural fields during the last century.... (More)
Understanding the land use history has proven crucial for the conservation of biodiversity in the agricultural landscape. In southern Sweden, very small and fragmented areas of the disturbance-dependent habitat xeric sand calcareous grassland support a large number of threatened and rare plants and animals. In order to find out if historical land use could explain variation in present-day habitat quality, the land use on eight such sites was traced back to the 18th century and compared with key factors such as the amount of bare sand, lime content and P availability. There was no support for the common explanation of the decline in xeric sand calcareous grassland being caused by abandonment of agricultural fields during the last century. Instead, fertilization history was the main explanation for the difference in depletion depth of CaCO3 seen between the sites. The decline in xeric sand calcareous grassland since the 18th century is most probably the result of the drastic changes in land use during the 19th century, which put an end to the extensive sand drift. Since cultivation was shown to have played an important role in the historical land use of xeric sand calcareous grassland, grazing alone may not be the optimal management option for these grasslands. Instead more drastic measures are needed to restore the high calcium content and maintain proper disturbance levels. (Less)
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organization
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publication status
published
subject
in
PLoS ONE
volume
9
issue
3
publisher
Public Library of Science
external identifiers
  • pmid:24621928
  • wos:000332845300044
  • scopus:84897980789
ISSN
1932-6203
DOI
10.1371/journal.pone.0090998
project
BECC
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
d7d73115-f721-4d6d-b1bd-297b8e07c083 (old id 4383427)
date added to LUP
2014-04-25 09:40:45
date last changed
2017-01-01 05:24:25
@article{d7d73115-f721-4d6d-b1bd-297b8e07c083,
  abstract     = {Understanding the land use history has proven crucial for the conservation of biodiversity in the agricultural landscape. In southern Sweden, very small and fragmented areas of the disturbance-dependent habitat xeric sand calcareous grassland support a large number of threatened and rare plants and animals. In order to find out if historical land use could explain variation in present-day habitat quality, the land use on eight such sites was traced back to the 18th century and compared with key factors such as the amount of bare sand, lime content and P availability. There was no support for the common explanation of the decline in xeric sand calcareous grassland being caused by abandonment of agricultural fields during the last century. Instead, fertilization history was the main explanation for the difference in depletion depth of CaCO3 seen between the sites. The decline in xeric sand calcareous grassland since the 18th century is most probably the result of the drastic changes in land use during the 19th century, which put an end to the extensive sand drift. Since cultivation was shown to have played an important role in the historical land use of xeric sand calcareous grassland, grazing alone may not be the optimal management option for these grasslands. Instead more drastic measures are needed to restore the high calcium content and maintain proper disturbance levels.},
  articleno    = {e90998},
  author       = {Ödman, Anja and Olsson, Pål Axel},
  issn         = {1932-6203},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {3},
  publisher    = {Public Library of Science},
  series       = {PLoS ONE},
  title        = {Conservation of sandy calcareous grassland: what can be learned from the land use history?},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0090998},
  volume       = {9},
  year         = {2014},
}