Biodiversity & Ecology
Short Database Report Open Access
Database of German North Sea Salt Marshes – changes in vegetation and elevation
Keywords: biodiversity; conservation; management; sea level rise; sedimentation; Wadden Sea.
Abstract: The Database of German North Sea Salt Marshes (GIVD ID EU-DE-029) comprises 423 1m²-plots from German North Sea salt marshes, tracing back to the project “Thematic Mapping and Sensitivity Study of Mudflat Areas in the German Wadden Sea”. In 1987-1991 and again in 2007, plots along 31 transects – covering the mainland coast of Schleswig-Holstein – were investigated for their vascular plant species composition (species' presence and cover using Londo scale) as well as structural and spatial variables like grazing management, position and elevation in relation to mean high tide. Frequent vegetation-types were Spartinetum anglicae, Puccinellietum maritimae and Festucetum rubrae. This consistent data set allowed and still aims to determine spatial and geographical differences regarding changes in species diversity, dominance structure and functional traits in relation to driving environmental variables, and, especially, to study changes in elevation (due to accretion and subsidence) and vegetation in the salt marshes with regard to future sea level rise. Further, our data provide a baseline for future studies of possible changes in biodiversity, vegetation composition and species distribution pattern caused e.g. by invasive plant species, conservation management or sea level rise, which may in turn further improve future salt marsh management.
Suchrow, S., Pohlmann, N., Stock, M., Jensen, K. (2012): Database of German North Sea Salt Marshes – changes in vegetation and elevation. – In: Dengler, J., Oldeland, J., Jansen, F., Chytrý, M., Ewald, J., Finckh, M., Glöckler, F., Lopez-Gonzalez, G., Peet, R.K., Schaminée, J.H.J. [Eds.]: Vegetation databases for the 21st century. – Biodiversity & Ecology 4: 368–369. DOI: 10.7809/b-e.00159.