The Effect of the Habitat Type on Soil and Plant Diversity Properties in Natural Ecosystems in the Northern Alborz (Case Study: Vaz Watershed)
This study aimed to compare plant species diversity indices (diversity and richness) and some physico-chemical properties of soil among forest, ecotone and rangeland habitats. Vegetation sampling was done randomly at each habitat. One dominant community was selected in each habitat and one key area was distinguished in each community and 8×1m2 plots were randomly established in each key area. In each plot, the list of existing plants and cover percentage for each species were determined and soil samples were taken from depths of 0-10 cm. The Shannon-Wiener and Simpson diversity indices and Margalef and Menhinic richness indices were estimated using PAST software. Physical and chemical characteristics of the soil were compared at three sites by analysis of variance (One Way ANOVA). The results showed that the lowest and highest values of all species diversity and richness were occurred in forest and ecotone habitats, respectively. Bulk density, sand and pH value of soil were significantly the highest in the rangeland. The percentage of clay and organic carbon in forest habitat were higher than the two other habitats. This study revealed the importance of ecotone in preserving the diversity and species richness.
Iranian Journal of Applied Ecology, Volume:5 Issue:16, 2016
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