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A review and floristic analysis of lichen-rich grey dune vegetation in Britain

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Roy Sanderson


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We have completed a review of lichen-rich grey dune vegetation. All of the quadrat data for the National Vegetation Classification (NVC) grey dune community described as Carex arenaria - Cornicularia aculeata (SD11) collected during the Sand Dune Survey of Great Britain has been reanalysed using Pseudo-quadrat Analysis. This is based on a recent mathematical development showing that it is possible to generate artificial quadrats ('pseudo-random quadrats') from the phytosociological tables provided in the NVC manuals. These are mathematical approximations of the original NVC quadrat datasets and can be used to compare the NVC with newly acquired quadrat data using a standard ordination technique - Detrended Correspondence Analysis (DCA). The field quadrats can be placed into this ordination space as passive samples, and their distance from the artificial NVC quadrats used as a measure of community membership. As was expected this has shown that there is a degree of inter- and intra-site variation among grey dunes, with some stands having strong affinities with various heathland communities, and others having more in common with certain lichen-rich grasslands. An ecological interpretation of grey dune vegetation is provided together with some details on how British grey dunes compare with those of continental Europe. Nomenclature follows Stace (1997) for vascular plants, Smith (2004) for bryophytes and Purvis et al. (1992) for lichens. © Royal Irish Academy.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Rhind P, Stevens D, Sanderson R

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Biology and Environment

Year: 2006

Volume: 106

Issue: 3

Pages: 301-310

ISSN (print): 0791-7945

ISSN (electronic): 2009-003X

Publisher: Royal Irish Academy