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Land use change by windfarm construction and afforestation has an impact on plant biodiversity on upland peatland site [electronic resource] / Emily McGuire

By: McGuire, Emily [author].
Material type: Computer fileComputer filePublisher: Galway : Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology, 2019Description: 1 online resource (31 pages) : figures, tables.Content type: text Media type: computer Carrier type: online resourceSubject(s): Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology (2019) -- Dissertations | Wind power -- Environmental aspects -- Ireland | Plants -- Effects of wind power plants on -- Ireland | Peatland forestry -- Environmental aspects -- IrelandOnline resources: eThesis - click to view Dissertation note: BSc (Hons) in Agriculture and Environmental Management. Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology, 2019 Summary: Land use change has the potential to alter the vegetation composition, abundance and distribution within a habitat. This can lead to a complete modification of plant biodiversity of the preceding land type thereby creating a new habitat. Vegetation may adapt to these new environmental conditions. However, plant communities can be affected by clearance of vegetation resulting in habitat fragmentation, habitat loss and increased competition with other species for resources. The aims of this study were to investigate if land use change by wind farm construction and afforestation of preceding peatland habitats on Sliabh Bawn Mountain Co. Roscommon had an impact on vegetation communities/plant biodiversity. Vegetation was surveyed using 2m x 2m quadrates and identified to species level where possible using a number of dichotomous keys. If this was not possible plants were identified to genus level. Ten quadrat were conducted in each of the three habitat types (1) wind turbine habitat, (2) conifer plantation habitat and (3) peatland habitat giving a total of 30 quadrat samples. The vegetation composition in terms of species present and percentage cover were recorded. The key findings of the study were that the sites that had experienced recent land use change i.e. wind turbine habitat and conifer plantation habitat had the highest levels of dissimilarity when compared to the peatland habitat. Also pioneer species had colonised rapidly in the wind turbine and conifer habitats. Following data analysis this study suggests that land use change by windfarm construction and afforestation changes vegetation composition.
List(s) this item appears in: Theses: Agriculture and Environmental Management
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eThesis (Browse shelf) Available eThesis - click link above to access eth#265192

BSc (Hons) in Agriculture and Environmental Management. Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology, 2019

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Land use change has the potential to alter the vegetation composition, abundance and distribution within a habitat. This can lead to a complete modification of plant biodiversity of the preceding land type thereby creating a new habitat. Vegetation may adapt to these new environmental conditions. However, plant communities can be affected by clearance of vegetation resulting in habitat fragmentation, habitat loss and increased competition with other species for resources. The aims of this study were to investigate if land use change by wind farm construction and afforestation of preceding peatland habitats on Sliabh Bawn Mountain Co. Roscommon had an impact on vegetation communities/plant biodiversity. Vegetation was surveyed using 2m x 2m quadrates and identified to species level where possible using a number of dichotomous keys. If this was not possible plants were identified to genus level. Ten quadrat were conducted in each of the three habitat types (1) wind turbine habitat, (2) conifer plantation habitat and (3) peatland habitat giving a total of 30 quadrat samples. The vegetation composition in terms of species present and percentage cover were recorded. The key findings of the study were that the sites that had experienced recent land use change i.e. wind turbine habitat and conifer plantation habitat had the highest levels of dissimilarity when compared to the peatland habitat. Also pioneer species had colonised rapidly in the wind turbine and conifer habitats. Following data analysis this study suggests that land use change by windfarm construction and afforestation changes vegetation composition.

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