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Environ Manage. 2006 Nov;38(5):837-52. Epub 2006 Jul 13.

Community structure and quality after 10 years in two central Ohio mitigation bank wetlands.

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  • 1McPhail Center for Environmental Studies, Denison University, Granville, Ohio 43023, USA. spielesd@denison.edu

Abstract

We evaluate two 10-year-old mitigation bank wetlands in central Ohio, one created and one with restored and enhanced components, by analysis of vegetation characteristics and by comparison of the year-10 vegetation and macroinvertebrate communities with reference wetlands. To assess different measures of wetland development, we compare the prevalence of native hydrophytes with an index of floristic quality and we evaluate the predictability of these parameters in year 10, given 5 years of data. Results show that the mitigation wetlands in this study meet vegetation performance criteria of native hydrophyte establishment by year 5 and maintain these characteristics through year 10. Species richness and floristic quality, as well as vegetative similarity with reference wetlands, differ among mitigation wetlands in year 1 and also in their rate of change during the first 10 years. The prevalence of native hydrophytes is reasonably predictable by year 10, but 5 years of monitoring is not sufficient to predict future trends of floristic quality in either the created or restored wetland. By year 10, macroinvertebrate taxa richness does not statistically differ among these wetlands, but mitigation wetlands differ from reference sites by tolerance index and by trophic guild dominance. The created wetland herbivore biomass is significantly smaller than its reference, whereas detritivore biomass is significantly greater in the created wetland and smaller in the restored wetland as compared with respective reference wetlands. These analyses illustrate differences in measures of wetland performance and contrast the monitoring duration necessary for legal compliance with the duration required for development of more complex indicators of ecosystem integrity.

PMID:
16841175
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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