An ecological assessment of plant diversity in cleared and native Brigalow (Acacia harpophylla) stands

Kamaljit K. Sangha, Rajesh K. Jalota, Nanjappa Ashwath, John Rolfe, David J. Midmore

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference Paper published in Proceedings

Abstract

Soils supporting brigalow dominated vegetation are fertile, with much plant diversity and good undergrowth. Because of the fertile soils in brigalow country, clearing and land development started since the 1950s for pasture cultivation and other agricultural practices. In Central Queensland, most of the clearing has been done in brigalow stands for pastures, and exotic grasses such as buffel grass (Cenchrus ciliaris) have been promoted over a large scale.
This has affected the diversity of ground-floor species. The present study evaluates the species diversity found on the floors of native and cleared brigalow stands at three different ages of clearing i.e. 5 years, 13 years and 33 years. The paired comparisons at these sites showed that species diversity was more evident in the native stands compared to the respective cleared ones. It is hypothesized that functional diversity of these ground species contributes towards better sustainability of the system, and this is discussed in the paper.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRemnant vegetation in the Brigalow Belt
Subtitle of host publicationManagement and Conservation
EditorsAnne Exelby, Alistair Melzer
PublisherThe Centre for Environmental Management, Central Queensland University, Qld
Number of pages14
ISBN (Print)1921047127
Publication statusPublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes

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Sangha, K. K., Jalota, R. K., Ashwath, N., Rolfe, J., & Midmore, D. J. (2001). An ecological assessment of plant diversity in cleared and native Brigalow (Acacia harpophylla) stands. In A. Exelby, & A. Melzer (Eds.), Remnant vegetation in the Brigalow Belt: Management and Conservation The Centre for Environmental Management, Central Queensland University, Qld.