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Transplanted seed bank response to drawdown time in a created wetland in East Texas

Abstract

Sediment was transplanted from a 13-yr-old created wetland on a nonacid mine in east Texas into a constructed experimental basin to examine seed bank response to 4 drawdown regimes. The experimental basin was flooded following sediment transplantation in February, and surface water was later removed in April, June, and August. The success of the transplanted seed bank in vegetating the experimental wetland was assessed by measuring species richness, seedling density, and above-ground biomass. April drawdown produced the greatest species richness (29), stem density (1851.0 stems m−2), and above-ground biomass (769.3 g m−2), followed by the unflooded water regime. June and August drawdowns produced less emergent vegetation than the other treatments, but 3 submergent species were produced prior to drawdowns. Results indicate that use of transplanted species-rich wetland soil subjected to early spring drawdown is a very effective technique for establishing wetland vegetation on disturbed sites in east Texas. In addition, reestablishment of vegetation in the donor wetland was assessed by comparing percent cover in disturbed plots to undisturbed plots. Disturbed plots achieved 66.0 percent cover after 10 months following soil removal compared to 96.3 percent cover in undisturbed plots. Disturbed plots were dominated by vegetatively reproducing species and contained very few annuals. Excavating relatively few widely-spaced narrow strips of soil from the donor wetland caused only slight decreases in vegetative cover during the subsequent growing season.

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McKnight, S.K. Transplanted seed bank response to drawdown time in a created wetland in East Texas. Wetlands 12, 79–90 (1992). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF03160589

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/BF03160589

Key Words

  • drawdown
  • east Texas
  • germination
  • seed bank
  • strip mine wetlands
  • water regime
  • wetland creation