Study

Response of aquatic vegetation communities and other wetland cover types to floodplain restoration at Emiquon Preserve

  • Published source details Hine C.S., Hagy H.M., Horath M.M., Yetter A.P., Smith R.V. & Stafford J.D. (2017) Response of aquatic vegetation communities and other wetland cover types to floodplain restoration at Emiquon Preserve. Hydrobiologia, 804, 59-71.

Actions

This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Raise water level to restore/create freshwater marshes from other land uses

Action Link
Marsh and Swamp Conservation
  1. Raise water level to restore/create freshwater marshes from other land uses

    A before-and-after, site comparison study in 1938–2013 on a floodplain in Illinois, USA (Hine et al. 2017) reported that after raising the water table by turning off drainage pumps, the total wetland area and coverage of emergent wetland vegetation increased. Statistical significance was not assessed. In the autumn after rewetting, the total wetland area was 252 ha. Emergent vegetation covered only 114 ha of the site (63 ha permanent marsh and 51 ha temporary mudflat colonizers). Six years later, the total wetland area was 1,944 ha. Emergent vegetation covered 558 ha (450 ha permanent and 108 ha temporary). Over the six years, the average proportion of the rewetted site covered by emergent vegetation (29%) was similar to historical (25%) and contemporary (36%) values for similar wetland sites. However, the proportion covered by permanent vegetation was higher (rewetted: 21%; historical: 12%; contemporary: 4%) and the proportion covered by temporary vegetation was lower (rewetted: 9%; historical: 12%; contemporary: 33%). Methods: In 2007 (precise date not reported), drainage systems were switched off to raise the water table in a historically farmed floodplain area. This created a range of wetland and deepwater habitats. Each autumn between 2007 and 2013, vegetation types were mapped using field surveys and aerial photographs. Vegetation coverage was compared to published records for natural wetland sites in the same river valley, from 1938–1942 and 2005–2006.

    (Summarised by: Nigel Taylor)

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