Dynamics of isolated Saponaria bellidifolia Sm. populations at northern range periphery
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- Csergő, AM., Molnár, E. & García, M.B. Popul Ecol (2011) 53: 393. doi:10.1007/s10144-010-0249-y
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Four populations of Saponaria bellidifolia situated at the species’ northern range periphery (Apuseni Mountains, southeastern Carpathians) were monitored over a period of 5 years. They were chosen to represent different habitat types (rocky, fixed screes, open screes and grassy), disturbance regime (fire), and population sizes (categorized as large and small). The reproductive effort was quantified, and matrix models were used to describe the population dynamics and to assess population viability. Saponaria bellidifolia had very stable population dynamics in the harsh and stable abiotic conditions of the outcrops where populations occur. Habitat conditions exerted a notable influence on the species’ population reproductive performance, growth rate, and vital rates, whereas population size and climate did not have a clear-cut effect on the dynamics of the species. Saponaria bellidifolia maintains viable populations in the southeastern Carpathians, at its northern range periphery.