Advertisement

Wetlands

, Volume 22, Issue 4, pp 722–737 | Cite as

Linking landscape properties to local hydrogeologic gradients and plant species occurrence in minerotrophic fens of New York State, USA: A Hydrogeologic Setting (HGS) framework

  • Kevin S. Godwin
  • James P. Shallenberger
  • Donald J. Leopold
  • Barbara L. Bedford
Article

Abstract

We present a Hydrogeologic Setting (HGS) framework and the results of subsequent field evaluation for minerotrophic fens throughout New York State, USA. HGS uses a hierarchical approach to link landscape properties to local environmental gradient and, therefore, the plant communities that are associated with calcareous wetlands. This framework was organized into three general classes (i.e., chemical, physical, and spatial), which cumulatively represent the primary top-down factors driving fen occurrence. For 45 fen sites in the New York Natural Heritage Program (NYNHP) database, landscape setting was inferred based on review of published materials (e.g., geologic, topographic, soils maps, and reports). To examine the relationship between HGS and local environmental gradients, nested observation well clusters were placed in 30 of the fen sites. Environmental gradients were quantified in the field (e.g., water depth, pore water pH, temperature, and specific conductivity) and laboratory (e.g., dominant ion and major limiting nutrients concentrations). Statistical analyses were used to relate HGS to local environmental gradients, ecological community, and fen indicator species occurrence. Results suggest that known New York fens occupy distinct hydrogeologic settings, that HGS is significantly correlated to local environmental gradients, and that HGS and local environmental gradients are significantly related to fen ecological community and indicator species occurrence. We used this HGS framework for fens, but the rationale provided may be applied more broadly or narrowly to a range of ecosystem types.

Key Words

fen hydrogeologic setting wetland hydrology environmental gradients water chemistry 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Literature Cited

  1. Amon, J. P., C. A. Thompson, Q. J. Carpenter, and J. Miner. 2002. Temperate fens of the glaciated Midwestern USA. Wetlands 22:301–317.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Anderson, D. S., R. B. Davis, and J. A. Janssens. 1995. Relationship of byrophytes and lichens to environmental gradients in Maine peatlands. Vegetatio 120:147–159.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bedford, B. L. 1996. The need to define hydrologic equivalence at the landscape scale for freshwater wetland mitigation. Ecological Applications 6:57–68.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Bedford, B. L. 1999. Cumulative effects on wetland landscapes: links to wetland restoration in the United States and southern Canada. Wetlands 19:775–788.Google Scholar
  5. Bedford, B. L. and J. T. A. Verhoeven. 2000. Wetland Millennium Event. Hydrologic and geochemical controls on vegetation-nutrient relations in fens. Society of Wetland Scientists Invited Papers Symposium. Symposium 15:207. Quebec City, PQ, Canada.Google Scholar
  6. Bedford, B. L., D. J. Leopold, and J. P. Gibbs. 2001. Wetland ecosystems. p. 781–804. In Encyclopedia of Biodiversity, Volume 5. Academic Press, San Diego, CA, USA.Google Scholar
  7. Boeye, D. L., L. Clement, and R. F. Verheyen. 1994. Hydrochemical variation in a ground water discharge fen. Wetlands 14:122–133.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Boeye, D. L., B. Verhagen, V. Van Haesebroeck, and R. F. Verheven. 1997. Nutrient limitation in species-rich lowland fens. Journal of Vegetation Science 8:415–424.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Boyer, M. L. H. and B. D. Wheeler. 1989. Vegetation patterns in spring fed calcareous fens: calcite precipitation and constraints on fertility. Journal of Ecology 77:597–609.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Bridgham, S. D., J. Pastor, J. A. Janssens, C. Chapin, and T. J. Malterer. 1996. Multiple limiting gradients in peatlands: a call for a new paradigm. Wetlands 16:30–65.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Brinson, M. M. 1993a. Changes in the functioning of wetlands along environmental gradients. Wetlands 13:65–74.Google Scholar
  12. Brinson, M. M. 1993b. A hydrogeomorphic classification for wetlands. Army Corps of Engineers. Water Experimental Station, Vicksburg, MS, USA. Technical report TR-WRP-DE-4.Google Scholar
  13. Cairns, J. Jr, P. V. McCormick, and B. R. Niederlehner. 1993. A proposed framework for developing indicators of ecosystem health. Hydrobiologica 263:1–44.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Chason, D. B. and D. I. Siegel. 1986. Hydraulic conductivity and related properties of peat. Soil Science 142:91–99.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Clements, F. E. 1920. Plant indicators: the relation of plant communities to process and practice. Carnegie Institute of Washington, Washington, DC, USA. Publ. 290.Google Scholar
  16. Cole, C. A. and R. P. Brooks. 2000. Patterns of wetland hydrology in the Ridge and Valley Province, Pennsylvania, USA. Wetlands 20:438–447.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Crum, H. 1995. A Focus on Peatlands and Peat Mosses. The University of Michigan Press. Ann Arbor, MI, USA.Google Scholar
  18. Curtis, J. T. and R. P. McIntosh. 1951. An upland forest continuum in the prairie-forest border region of Wisconsin. Ecology 32:476–498.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Drever, J. I. 1997. The Geochemistry of Natural Waters, third edition. Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River, NJ, USA.Google Scholar
  20. Forman, R. T. 2000. Estimate the area affected ecologically by the road system in the United States. Conservation Biology 14:36–46.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Gibert, J. D. L. Danielopol, and J. A. Stanford (eds.) 1994. Basic attributes of groundwater ecosystems and prospects for research. p. 8–40. In Groundwater Ecology. Academic Press, New York, NY, USA.Google Scholar
  22. Glaser, P. H., J. A. Janssens, and D. I. Siegel. 1990. The response of vegetation to chemical and hydrological gradients in the Lost River Peatland, northern Minnesota. Journal of Ecology 78:1021–1048.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Hall, B. R. D. J. Raynal, and D. J. Leopold. 2001. Environmental influences on plant species composition in ground-water seeps in the Catskill Mountains of New York. Wetlands 21:125–134.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Harris, A. G., S. C. McMurray, P. W. C. Uhlig, J. K. Jeglum, R. F. Foster, and G. D. Racey. 1996. Field Guide to the Wetland Ecosystem Classification for Northwestern Ontario. Northwest Science and Technology, Thunder Bay, ON, Canada. Field Guide FG-01.Google Scholar
  25. Hunter, M. L., Jr. G. L. Jacobsen, and T. Webb III. 1988. Paleoecology and a coarse-filter approach to maintaining biodiversity. Conservation Biology 2:375–385.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Isachsen, Y. W., E. Landing, J. M. Lauber, L. V. Rickard, and W. B. Rogers (eds.) 1991. Geology of New York: a simplified account. Educational Leaflet No. 20, The University of the State of New York, The State Education Department, Albany, NY, USA.Google Scholar
  27. Johnson, A. M. and D. J. Leopold. 1994. Vascular plant species richness and rarity across a minerotrophic gradient in wetlands of St. Lawrence County, New York, U.S.A. Biodiversity and Conservation 3:606–62.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Johnson, G. and D. J. Leopold. 1998. Habitat management of the eastern massasauga in central New York weakly minerotrophic peatland: The effects of cutting, burning and herbicides on vegetation and small mammal abundance. Journal of Wildlife Management 62:84–97.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Johnson, L. B. and S. H. Gage. 1997. A landscape approach to analyzing aquatic ecosystems. Freshwater Biology 37:113–132.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Jongman, R. G. H., C. J. F. Ter Braak, and O. F. R. Van Tongeren (eds.) 1995. Data Analysis in Community and Landscape Ecology. Cambridge University Press, New York, NY, USA.Google Scholar
  31. Karlin, E. F. and L. C. Bliss. 1984. Variation in substrate chemistry along microtopographical and water chemistry gradients in peatlands. Canadian Journal of Botany 62:142–153.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Katz, N. J. 1926. Sphagnum bogs of central Russia: phytosociology, ecology and succession. Journal of Ecology 14:177–202.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Koerselman, W., S. A. Bakker, and M. Blom. 1990. Nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium budgets from two small fens surrounded by heavily fertilized pastures, Journal of Ecology 78:428–442.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. McCune, B. and M. J. Mefford. 1997. PC-ORD-multivariate analysis of ecological data version 3.18. MjiM Software. Gleneden Beach, Oregon, USA.Google Scholar
  35. McNamara, J. P., D. I. Siegel, P. H. Glaser, and R. M. Beck. Hydrogeologic controls on peatland development in the Malloryville Wetland, New York (USA) Journal of Hydrology 140:279–296.Google Scholar
  36. Nekola, J. C. 1994. The environment and vascular flora of northeastern Iowa fen communities. Rhodora 96:121–169.Google Scholar
  37. Noss, R. F. 1987. From plant communities to landscapes in conservation inventories: a look at The Nature Conservancy (USA). Biological Conservation 41:11–37.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Poiani, K. A. B. D. Richter, M. G. Anderson, and H. E. Richter. 2000. Biodiversity conservation at multiple scales: functional sites, landscapes and networks. BioScience 50:133–146.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Reschke, C. 1990. Ecological Communities of New York State. New York Heritage Program NYS Department of Environmental Conservation. Latham. New York. USA.Google Scholar
  40. Rollins, L. 1988. PCWATEQ: A simple, interactive PC version of the water chemistry analysis program WATEQ-F. Available online at http://www.ndsu.nodak.edu.Google Scholar
  41. SAS Institute Inc. 1990. SAS/STAT release 7.0 edition. Cary, North Carolina, USA.Google Scholar
  42. Slack, N. G. 1994. Can one tell the mire type from the bryophytes alone? Journal of the Hattori Botanical Laboratory 75:149–159.Google Scholar
  43. Sjors, H. 1950. On the relation between vegetation and electrolytes in northern Swedish mire waters. Oikos 2:241–257.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Ter Braak, C. J. F. 1986. Canonical correspondence analysis: a new eigenvector technique for multivariate direct gradient analysis. Ecology 67:1167–1179.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Thompson, C. A., E. A. Bettis III, and R. G. Baker. 1992. Geology of Iowa fens. Journal of Iowa Academic Science 99:52–59.Google Scholar
  46. Tiner, R. W. 1999. Wetland Indicators: a Guide to Wetland Identification, Delineation, Classification, and Mapping. Lewis Publishers, Boca Raton, FL, USA.Google Scholar
  47. Vitt, D. H. and W. L. Chee. 1990. The relationships of vegetation to surface water chemistry in fens in Alberta, Canada. Vegetatio 89:87–106.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Wheeler, B. D. and S. C. Shaw. 1995. A focus on fens—controls on the composition of fen vegetation in relation to restoration. B. D. Wheeler, S. C. Shaw, W. J. Fojt and R. A. Robertson (eds.) p. 49–72. In Restoration of Temperate Wetlands. John Wiley and Sons Ltd., New York, NY, USA.Google Scholar
  49. Wilcox, D. A. 1986. The effects of deicing salts on vegetation in Pinhook Bog, Indiana Canadian Journal of Botany 64:865–874.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Winter, T. C. 1988. Conceptual framework for assessment of cumulative impacts on the hydrology of non-tidal wetlands. Environmental Management 12:605–620.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Winter, T. C. 1992. A physiographic and climatic framework for hydrologic studies of wetlands. Aquatic ecosystems in semi-arid regions: implications for resource management. p. 127–148. In R. D. Roberts and M. L. Bothwell (eds.) Aquatic Ecosystems in Semi-Arid regions: Implications for Resource Management. NHRI Symposium Series. Environment Canada, Saskatoon, SK, Canada.Google Scholar
  52. Zoltai, S. C. and D. H. Vitt. 1995. Canadian wetlands: environmental gradients and classification. Vegetatio 118:131–137.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Society of Wetland Scientists 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kevin S. Godwin
    • 1
  • James P. Shallenberger
    • 1
  • Donald J. Leopold
    • 1
  • Barbara L. Bedford
    • 2
  1. 1.State University of New York-College of Environmental Science and ForestrySyracuseUSA
  2. 2.Department of Natural ResourcesCornell UniversityIthacaUSA

Personalised recommendations