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The positive and negative conservation impacts of sheep grazing and other disturbances on the vascular plant species and vegetation of lowland subhumid Tasmania

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Kirkpatrick, JB and Gilfedder, L and Bridle, K and Zacharek, A (2005) The positive and negative conservation impacts of sheep grazing and other disturbances on the vascular plant species and vegetation of lowland subhumid Tasmania. Ecological Management and Restoration, 6. pp. 51-60. ISSN 1442-7001

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Abstract

An important conservation question for grazed areas of lowland subhumid Tasmania is ‘what effects do different, practical disturbance regimes have on native vegetation?’ An experiment designed to determine the single and interactive effects of fire and sheep grazing was established at four sites with distinct vegetation types. There were significant interactive effects of fire and sheep grazing on vegetation attributes at all sites. An analysis of published and new data indicated that there were several vascular plant species that appeared dependent on sheep grazing for their persistence in the present landscape, while there were others that were intolerant of this disturbance but required other types of disturbance, such as mowing. However, most native species appeared to survive in a wide variety of disturbance regimes short of ploughing and fertilization. The implications of these results are that a variety of disturbance regimes is necessary to maintain biological diversity in this environment, and that the naturalness of the regime is not necessarily relevant to its use for conservation.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: fertilization, fire, grazing regimes, mowing, native vegetation, sheep grazing, Tasmania, threatened species.
Journal or Publication Title: Ecological Management and Restoration
Page Range: pp. 51-60
ISSN: 1442-7001
Identification Number - DOI: 10.1111/j.1442-8903.2005.00219.x
Additional Information: The definitive version is available at www.blackwell-synergy.com
Date Deposited: 21 Oct 2007 22:09
Last Modified: 18 Nov 2014 03:23
URI: http://eprints.utas.edu.au/id/eprint/2269
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