Study

Mowing regime has different effects on reed stands in relation to habitat

  • Published source details Fogli S., Brancaleoni L., Lambertini C. & Gerdol R. (2014) Mowing regime has different effects on reed stands in relation to habitat. Journal of Environmental Management, 134, 56-62.

Actions

This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Reduce frequency of vegetation harvest: freshwater marshes

Action Link
Marsh and Swamp Conservation

Reduce frequency of cutting/mowing: freshwater marshes

Action Link
Marsh and Swamp Conservation

Cut/mow herbaceous plants to maintain or restore disturbance

Action Link
Peatland Conservation

Cut/mow herbaceous plants to maintain or restore disturbance: freshwater marshes

Action Link
Marsh and Swamp Conservation
  1. Reduce frequency of vegetation harvest: freshwater marshes

    A paired, controlled, before-and-after study in 2000–2002 in two lakeshore reedbeds in northern Italy (Fogli et al. 2014) found that plots harvested once or twice each year supported similar common reed Phragmites australis biomass after two years. In both reedbeds, above-ground reed biomass was statistically similar in plots harvested once each year (in winter; 625–1,751 g/m2) and plots harvested twice each year (in summer and winter; 370–1,153 g/m2). Before harvesting, reed biomass was statistically similar in plots destined for each treatment (477–668 g/m2). Methods: In July 2000, a pair of 10 x 10 m plots was established in each of two reedbeds on the shore of Lago di Aslerio. From summer 2000, one plot/reedbed was mown once each year (August 2000 and 2001), one plot/reedbed was mown twice each year (February 2001 and 2002, plus August mowing). Cuttings were removed. The reedbeds had been historically harvested in winter (and sometimes in summer), but not for >30 years. Above-ground biomass was calculated from counts and measurements of reed shoots from three 1-m2 quadrats/plot, before intervention (July 2000) and two years later (July 2002).

    (Summarised by: Nigel Taylor)

  2. Reduce frequency of cutting/mowing: freshwater marshes

    A paired, controlled, before-and-after study in 2000–2002 in two lakeshore reedbeds in northern Italy (Fogli et al. 2014) found that plots mown once or twice each year supported similar common reed Phragmites australis biomass after two years. In both reedbeds, above-ground reed biomass was statistically similar in plots mown once each year (in winter; 625–1,751 g/m2) and plots mown twice each year (in summer and winter; 370–1,153 g/m2). Before mowing, reed biomass was statistically similar in plots destined for each treatment (477–668 g/m2). Methods: In July 2000, a pair of 10 x 10 m plots was established in each of two reedbeds on the shore of Lago di Aslerio. From summer 2000, one plot/reedbed was mown once each year (August 2000 and 2001), one plot/reedbed was mown twice each year (February 2001 and 2002, plus August mowing). Cuttings were removed. The reedbeds had been historically mown in winter (and sometimes in summer), but not for >30 years. Above-ground biomass was calculated from counts and measurements of reed shoots from three 1-m2 quadrats/plot, before intervention (July 2000) and two years later (July 2002).

    (Summarised by: Nigel Taylor)

  3. Cut/mow herbaceous plants to maintain or restore disturbance

    A controlled, before-and-after study in 2000–2002 in a degraded fen meadow in Italy (Fogli et al. 2012) found that after reinstatement of mowing, the biomass of common reed Phragmites australis decreased. After two years of mowing, reed biomass was lower in a plot mown twice each year (22 g/m2) and a plot mown once each year (56 g/m2) than in an unmown plot (130 g/m2). Before intervention, reed biomass was similar in all plots (99–112 g/m2). In July 2000, three 10 x 10 m plots were established in an area of abandoned fen meadow invaded by reeds. Reed shoots were counted and measured in three 1 m2 quadrats/plot and reed biomass was calculated. Then, one plot was mown once each year (August 2000 and 2001), one was mown twice each year (February 2001 and 2002, plus August mowing), and one was not mown. In July 2002, biomass measurements were repeated.

    (Summarised by: Nigel Taylor)

  4. Cut/mow herbaceous plants to maintain or restore disturbance: freshwater marshes

    A paired, controlled, before-and-after study in 2000–2002 in two lakeshore reedbeds in northern Italy (Fogli et al. 2014) found that plots where mowing had been resumed typically had similar common reed Phragmites australis biomass to plots that remained unmown. After two years of resumed mowing, above-ground reed biomass was statistically similar in mown and unmown plots in three of four comparisons (for which mown: 370–1,751 g/m2; unmown: 375–1844 g/m2). In the other comparison, reed biomass was lower in plots mown twice each year (1,153 g/m2) than in unmown plots (1,844 g/m2). Before mowing, reed biomass was statistically similar in plots destined for each treatment (477–982 g/m2). Methods: In July 2000, three 10 x 10 m plots were established in each of two reedbeds on the shore of Lago di Aslerio. The reedbeds had been historically mown in winter (and sometimes in summer), but not for >30 years. From summer 2000, one plot/reedbed was mown once each year (August 2000 and 2001), one plot/reedbed was mown twice each year (February 2001 and 2002, plus August mowing), and one plot/reedbed was left unmown. Above-ground biomass was calculated from counts and measurements of reed shoots from three 1-m2 quadrats/plot, before intervention (July 2000) and two years later (July 2002).

    (Summarised by: Nigel Taylor)

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