Effects of Water Table Depth and Edaphic Characteristics on Plant Diversity in a Southern Mississippi Pitcher Plant Bog

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Effects of Water Table Depth and Edaphic Characteristics on Plant Diversity in a Southern Mississippi Pitcher Plant Bog, Is A Well-Researched Topic, It Is To Be Used As A Guide Or Framework For Your Research.

ABSTRACT

This study examined the effects that water table depth and soil characteristics have on plant species richness and species composition within pitcher plant bogs across seasons. Eight piezometers were installed at random distances to monitor long-term water table depth and pressure fluctuations along a ~710-meter line transect traversing upland and bog habitats. Vegetation sampling quadrats (n=128) were set up near each piezometer. Cover data and water table depths were collected in spring and late summer. Soil samples collected from each treatment group were used to obtain soil texture and nutrient data. The summer collection period yielded a total  diversity of 152 taxa, while the spring resulted in a  diversity of 149 taxa. Grasses, sedges, and forbs were the most abundant species across both sampling seasons. Regression indicated that mean species richness was not significantly dependent on mean water table depth [P=0.1313]. Regression also concluded that mean percentage of sand in the soil had a significant, positive effect on mean water table depth [P=0.003]. It was proposed that soil moisture levels are contributing to levels of diversity due to the mesic treatments exhibiting the highest levels of plant diversity across both sampling seasons. Statistical analyses provided evidence that soil moisture and soil texture could be gradients driving plant species composition.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

ABSTRACT ………………………………………………………………………………………………………… ii
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ……………………………………………………………………………………. iii
DEDICATION ……………………………………………………………………………………………………. iv
LIST OF TABLES ……………………………………………………………………………………………… vii
LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS ………………………………………………………………………………. viii
LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS ……………………………………………………………………………….. ix
CHAPTER I – INTRODUCTION ………………………………………………………………………….. 1
CHAPTER II – METHODS ………………………………………………………………………………….. 7
Study Site ………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 7
Study Plots ………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 7
Water Table Depth ……………………………………………………………………………………………. 8
Vegetation Sampling …………………………………………………………………………………………. 8
Soil Data………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 9
Soil Nutrient Analyses …………………………………………………………………………………… 9
Weather Station Data ………………………………………………………………………………………. 10
Multivariate Statistical Analyses ………………………………………………………………………. 10
Diversity, Abundance, ANOSIM and NMDS …………………………………………………. 10
Univariate Statistical Analyses …………………………………………………………………………. 11
Parametric Assumptions ………………………………………………………………………………. 11

Analyses of Variance (ANOVA) and Kruskal-Wallis Tests ……………………………… 11
Factorial Analysis of Variance………………………………………………………………………. 12
Simple Linear Regressions …………………………………………………………………………… 12
CHAPTER III – RESULTS ………………………………………………………………………………….. 13 Richness, Abundance, and Community Similarity ………………………………………………. 13
Parametric Normality ………………………………………………………………………………………. 14
Effect of Seasonality and Piezometer Location …………………………………………………… 15
Species Richness Differences per Season …………………………………………………………… 15
Water Table Depth Differences per Season ………………………………………………………… 15
Soil Texture Differences ………………………………………………………………………………….. 16
Soil Carbon ……………………………………………………………………………………………………. 16
Soil Nitrogen ………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 17
Soil Phosphorus ……………………………………………………………………………………………… 17
Dependency of Environmental Factors ………………………………………………………………. 17
CHAPTER IV – DISCUSSION……………………………………………………………………………. 18
APPENDIX– Tables and Figures …………………………………………………………………………. 23
REFERENCES ………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 37

 

Additional information

Author

Patrick Kirby

No of Chapters

4

No of Pages

51

Reference

YES

Format

PDF

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