The "Carex" fen vegetation of northern New South Wales

  • The floristic composition and extent of Carex-dominated fens in the New South Wales New England Tablelands Bioregion and Barrington Tops area (lat 28° 41’ S–31° 55’ S; long 151° 23’ E–152° 05’ E) together with outliers from the central west (Coonabarabran) are described from 81 full floristic survey sites. These fens contained 234 vascular plant taxa of which 27% were exotic. The fens were dominated by herbaceous vegetation (96% of taxa). Cluster analysis of cover-abundance scores of vascular plant taxa from 81 plots placed within 71 separate Carex fens revealed three alliances: 1) Carex appressa, 2) Scirpus polystachyus – Carex tereticaulis and 3) Carex gaudichaudiana and seven communities: (1) Carex appressa – Stellaria angustifolia Fen (2) Carex appressa Fen (3) Scirpus polystachyus – Carex appressa Fen (4) Carex tereticaulis Fen (5) Carex gaudichaudiana – Isachne globosa Fen (6) Carex sp. Bendemeer – Carex gaudichaudiana Fen (7) Carex gaudichaudiana – Glyceria australis Fen The distribution of alliances showed a pattern of east-west separation. The most easterly alliance shares many features with the Carex gaudichaudiana Alliance of the Monaro Region of southern NSW while the other alliances have no counterparts within the current literature. We estimate that up to 5 000 ha of fen vegetation survive in the New England Bioregion of which 90% is on grazed land and only 0.2% is within conservation reserves. Seven outstanding examples of fens remain; most are examples of Community 5, with one representing Community 6 and none representing the other five communities. Many of these are not secured, and none of those within reserves are in their ‘natural’ state. We therefore strongly encourage measures to allow closure of drains, the opening of dams, and the rehabilitation of important fens such as Bishops, Racecourse and New Country Swamps.

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Author:John T. Hunter, Dorothy Bell
Parent Title (English):Cunninghamia : a journal of plant ecology for eastern Australia
Publisher:Mount Annan Botanic Garden, The Administration Officer
Place of publication:Mount Annan, NSW
Document Type:Article
Year of Completion:2009
Year of first Publication:2009
Publishing Institution:Universitätsbibliothek Johann Christian Senckenberg
Release Date:2013/04/19
Page Number:16
First Page:49
Last Page:64
Dewey Decimal Classification:5 Naturwissenschaften und Mathematik / 58 Pflanzen (Botanik) / 580 Pflanzen (Botanik)
Sammlungen:Sammlung Biologie / Sondersammelgebiets-Volltexte
Zeitschriften / Jahresberichte:Cunninghamia : A Journal of Plant Ecology for Eastern Australia / Cunninghamia : A Journal of Plant Ecology for Eastern Australia, Volume 11, Issue 1 (2009)
Licence (German):License LogoDeutsches Urheberrecht