The Ecological Role of Cornulalca aucheri (Amaranthaceae) in the Stabilization of Degraded Sandy Soils in Kuwait: The Case Study of Liyah Area
Cornulaca aucheri is an annual and biannual herb considered as a disturbance indicator currently visible and widely distributed in disturbed lands in Liyah area in Kuwait. Such area suffers from severe land degradation due to multiple interacting factors such as, overgrazing, camping and recreation, gravel and sand quarrying, military activities and natural processes. A restoration program was applied after the quarry surface irregularities were refilled and levelled. During the past 10 years of rehabilitation, noticeable healthy cover of Cornulaca sp. has been seen especially around an artificial lake and playas. The existence of such species in high density means that the restoration program was a success and was transitted from bare ground to Cornulaca and annual forb state. This is a lower state of Range State Transition Succession model, but it is better than bare soil. Cornulaca sp. is a native desert plant that grows in arid conditions. Despite its spiny leaves, it provides good food for camels and increases the supply of milk produced by lactating females. It is about 80 cm tall and has a stem that is branched from the base with new faster greenery growth in the summer. It shows good environmental potential to be managed as natural types used for restoration of degraded lands in desert areas.
KeywordsLand degradation Range State transition State rehabilitation
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