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Forskningsartikel2012Vetenskapligt granskad

The Importance of Temporal and Spatial Vegetation Structure Information in Biotope Mapping Schemes: A Case Study in Helsingborg, Sweden

Gao, Tian; Qiu, Ling; Hammer, Mårten; Gunnarsson, Allan


Temporal and spatial vegetation structure has impact on biodiversity qualities. Yet, current schemes of biotope mapping do only to a limited extend incorporate these factors in the mapping. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the application of a modified biotope mapping scheme that includes temporal and spatial vegetation structure. A refined scheme was developed based on a biotope classification, and applied to a green structure system in Helsingborg city in southern Sweden. It includes four parameters of vegetation structure: continuity of forest cover, age of dominant trees, horizontal structure, and vertical structure. The major green structure sites were determined by interpretation of panchromatic aerial photographs assisted with a field survey. A set of biotope maps was constructed on the basis of each level of modified classification. An evaluation of the scheme included two aspects in particular: comparison of species richness between long-continuity and short-continuity forests based on identification of woodland continuity using ancient woodland indicators (AWI) species and related historical documents, and spatial distribution of animals in the green space in relation to vegetation structure. The results indicate that (1) the relationship between forest continuity: according to verification of historical documents, the richness of AWI species was higher in long-continuity forests; Simpson's diversity was significantly different between long-and short-continuity forests; the total species richness and Shannon's diversity were much higher in long-continuity forests shown a very significant difference. (2) The spatial vegetation structure and age of stands influence the richness and abundance of the avian fauna and rabbits, and distance to the nearest tree and shrub was a strong determinant of presence for these animal groups. It is concluded that continuity of forest cover, age of dominant trees, horizontal and vertical structures of vegetation should now be included in urban biotope classifications.


Biotope mapping; Vegetation structure; Ancient woodland indicator species; Forest continuity; Biodiversity

Publicerad i

Environmental Management
2012, Volym: 49, nummer: 2, sidor: 459-472
Utgivare: SPRINGER