Study

Re-establishing a saltmarsh vegetation structure in a changing climate

  • Published source details Green J., Reichelt-Brushett A. & Jacobs S.W.L. (2009) Re-establishing a saltmarsh vegetation structure in a changing climate. Ecological Management & Restoration, 10, 20-30.

Actions

This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Transplant or replace blocks of vegetation: brackish/salt marshes

Action Link
Marsh and Swamp Conservation

Restore/create brackish/saline marshes or swamps (specific action unclear)

Action Link
Marsh and Swamp Conservation
  1. Transplant or replace blocks of vegetation: brackish/salt marshes

    A replicated, controlled, site comparison study in 2004–2007 of four areas of an estuarine salt marsh in New South Wales, Australia (Green et al. 2009) found that transplanting sods of the dominant marsh plant saltwater couch Sporobolus virginicus had no significant effect on plant community composition. After 3–4 years, the overall plant community composition was statistically similar in degraded areas planted with saltwater couch sods and degraded areas that had not been planted (data reported as a graphical analysis). Where saltwater couch was not transplanted, it spread from remnant patches in and around the study area. In 4 of 12 comparisons over three years, planted areas contained a plant community that was >70% similar to natural reference areas (vs 2 of 12 comparisons for unplanted areas). Methods: Between 2003 and mid-2004, four degraded areas of tidal salt marsh around a lagoon were restored using multiple interventions, including fencing to exclude vehicles and filling eroded patches with sediment. Two of these degraded areas were also planted with sods of saltwater couch (100 cm2; 1 m apart) cut from nearby natural marshes. Two additional areas of natural, undisturbed salt marsh were used for comparison. Plant species and cover were surveyed six times between July 2004 (after intervention) and April 2007. Each survey used fifty 1-m2 quadrats/area.

    (Summarised by: Nigel Taylor)

  2. Restore/create brackish/saline marshes or swamps (specific action unclear)

    A replicated, controlled, site comparison study in 2003–2007 in an estuarine salt marsh in New South Wales, Australia (Green et al. 2009) reported that restored areas developed a plant community more like natural reference areas over 3–4 years. All four restored areas were colonized by saltwater couch Sporobolus virginicus: the dominant plant species in the reference areas. The overall plant community composition in all four restored areas became more similar to the reference areas (data reported as a graphical analysis). However, it remained distinct from the reference marshes (similarity <50%) in three of four cases. Two additional degraded areas that received no or less intervention (details not clear) also developed a plant community more like reference marshes over time. These results are not based on assessments of statistical significance. Methods: Between July 2004 and April 2007, plant species and cover were surveyed in eight areas of tidal salt marsh around a lagoon (fifty 1-m2 quadrats/area/survey). Two areas contained natural, undisturbed salt marsh. The other six areas had been degraded by vehicle use, mining, rubbish dumping and weed encroachment. Four of these areas were restored between 2003 and mid-2004, with interventions including fencing to exclude vehicles, filling eroded patches with sediment, restoring the surrounding forest and transplanting sods of saltwater couch. The study does not clearly report what interventions, if any, were done in the other two degraded areas.

    (Summarised by: Nigel Taylor)

Output references
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