Study

Spartina alterniflora marshes on dredged material: a critical review of the ongoing debate over success

  • Published source details Streever W.J. (2000) Spartina alterniflora marshes on dredged material: a critical review of the ongoing debate over success. Wetlands Ecology and Management, 8, 295-316.

Actions

This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Deposit soil/sediment and introduce vegetation: brackish/salt marshes

Action Link
Marsh and Swamp Conservation
  1. Deposit soil/sediment and introduce vegetation: brackish/salt marshes

    A 2000 review analyzing coastal salt marshes in nine sites in the southeast USA (Streever 2000) found that marshes created by depositing sediment and planting marsh vegetation contained a similar amount of smooth cordgrass Spartina alterniflora to natural marshes, after 1–9 years. Averaged across all years, smooth cordgrass abundance was statistically similar in created and natural marshes (no significant difference from a 1:1 ratio). This was true for both above-ground biomass and stem density. Biomass in created marshes ranged from 0.5 times to 3.3 times the biomass in natural marshes. Stem density in created marshes ranged from 0.5 times to 1.9 times the density in natural marshes (but was never lower in created than natural marshes >3 years after creation). Methods: The review used published data from Florida, Georgia, North Carolina and Texas. It included data from (1) and several sites from (3) and (4). For each metric, year and site (above-ground biomass in seven sites, density in eight sites), a ratio was calculated to compare smooth cordgrass abundance in created and natural marshes. In all sites, marsh creation involved depositing dredged sediment in coastal waters until the surface was intertidal, then planting smooth cordgrass. Other marsh plant species were planted in some sites.

    (Summarised by: Nigel Taylor)

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