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Volume 16 (2017): Issue 1 (June 2017)

Volume 15 (2016): Issue 2 (December 2016)

Volume 15 (2016): Issue 1 (June 2016)

Volume 14 (2015): Issue 1 (June 2015)

Volume 13 (2014): Issue 2 (December 2014)

Volume 13 (2014): Issue 1 (June 2014)

Volume 12 (2013): Issue 2 (December 2013)

Volume 12 (2013): Issue 1 (June 2013)

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Volume 10 (2011): Issue 2 (December 2011)

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Volume 8 (2009): Issue 1 (June 2009)

Volume 7 (2008): Issue 2 (December 2008)

Volume 7 (2008): Issue 1 (June 2008)

Volume 6 (2007): Issue 2 (December 2007)

Volume 6 (2007): Issue 1 (July 2007)

Journal Details
Format
Journal
eISSN
1854-9829
First Published
10 Jul 2007
Publication timeframe
2 times per year
Languages
English

Search

Volume 15 (2016): Issue 2 (December 2016)

Journal Details
Format
Journal
eISSN
1854-9829
First Published
10 Jul 2007
Publication timeframe
2 times per year
Languages
English

Search

10 Articles
access type Open Access

Ecology and Conservation of Steppes and Semi-Natural Grasslands

Published Online: 12 Aug 2016
Page range: 5 - 14

Abstract

Abstract

Palaearctic grasslands encompass a diverse variety of habitats, many of high nature value and vulnerability. The main challenges are climate-change, land-use change, agricultural intensification and abandonment. Many measures are in place to address these challenges, through restoration and appropriate management, though more work is necessary. We present eight studies from China/Germany, Greece, Kazakhstan, Russia and Ukraine. The papers cover a wide range of grassland and steppe habitats and cover vegetation ecology, syntaxonomy and zoology. We also conducted a systematic search on steppe and grassland diversity. The greatest number of studies was from China, followed by Germany and England. We conclude that the amount of research being carried out on Eurasian grasslands is inadequate considering their high levels of biodiversity and vulnerability. We hope to encourage readers to address current major challenges, such as how to manage grasslands for the benefit of diverse taxa, to ensure that conservation initiatives concentrate on sites where there is good potential for success and for the generation of realistic and viable conservation strategies.

Keywords

  • abandonment
  • diversity
  • extensive agriculture
  • grasslands
  • homogenization
  • intensive agriculture
  • land-use change
access type Open Access

The Eurasian Dry Grassland Group (EDGG) in 2015–2016

Published Online: 12 Aug 2016
Page range: 15 - 19

Abstract

access type Open Access

Mountain pastures of Qilian Shan: plant communities, grazing impact and degradation status (Gansu province, NW China)

Published Online: 12 Aug 2016
Page range: 21 - 35

Abstract

Abstract

Environmental degradation of pasture areas in the Qilian Mountains (Gansu province, NW China) has increased in recent years. Soil erosion and loss of biodiversity caused by overgrazing is widespread. Changes in plant cover, however, have not been analysed so far. The aim of this paper is to identify plant communities and to detect grazing-induced changes in vegetation patterns. Quantitative and qualitative relevé data were collected for community classification and to analyse gradual changes in vegetation patterns along altitudinal and grazing gradients. Detrended correspondence analysis (DCA) was used to analyse variation in relationships between vegetation, environmental factors and differential grazing pressure. The results of the DCA showed apparent variation in plant communities along the grazing gradient. Two factors - altitude and exposure - had the strongest impact on plant community distribution. Comparing monitoring data for the most recent nine years, a trend of pasture deterioration, plant community successions and shift in dominant species becomes obvious. In order to increase grassland quality, sustainable pasture management strategies should be implemented.

Keywords

  • alpine vegetation
  • altitudinal gradient
  • Detrended Correspondence Analysis (DCA)
  • Indicator Species Analysis (ISA)
  • overgrazing
  • pasture degradation
  • species diversity
access type Open Access

Grasslands of intermontane basins of Central Caucasus: land use legacies and present-day state

Published Online: 12 Aug 2016
Page range: 37 - 47

Abstract

Abstract

Mountain semi-natural grasslands of intermontane basins of Central Caucasus, North Ossetia-Alania and the history of its land use were studied. It was found that post-forest, meadow-steppe and partially subalpine grasslands in the study area had been used as croplands for centuries and have been transformed into grazing lands about 60 years ago. In the last 20 years, the grasslands have been underused. It was revealed that current spatial distribution of grasslands is different from the classic scheme of natural climate-induced vegetation distribution. Species composition of meadow steppes is similar in different locations and does not reflect climatic differences of “dry” leeward and “wet” windward slopes of the intermontane basins. Present-day soils reflect parent material differences and erosion degree, but not topography-induced local climate specificity. However, discovered buried soils showed contrasting soil diversity on the southern and northern slopes. It is assumed that the present convergence of soil cover and vegetation is a result of long homogenising human impact and relatively short grassland development.

Keywords

  • buried soils
  • ecosystem convergence
  • land use history
  • mountain meadow-steppes
  • semi-natural grasslands
  • subalpine meadows
access type Open Access

Flora and vegetation of dry grasslands of Northeastern Ukraine, and problems of diversity conservation

Published Online: 12 Aug 2016
Page range: 49 - 62

Abstract

Abstract

The aim of this study was to describe the flora and vegetation of the grasslands of Northeastern Ukraine and to analyse how the steppe vegetation responds to grazing or its abandonment. We studied two gully systems in the east of the Kharkiv Region: the Regional Landscape Park “The Velykyi Burluk-Steppe” (steppe grasslands on chernozem soils; 10 sites) and the National Nature Park “Dvorichanskyi” (steppe grasslands on chalky outcrops; 5 sites). Long-term monitoring data exist for both these sites starting in 1991, shortly after grazing intensity reduced. We recorded the major grassland plant communities (reflecting their successional status) as well as their dominant species. Tree and scrub encroachment increased after management ceased. We conclude that (i) heterogeneous grazing (including ungrazed patches) in space and time is necessary in order to preserve grassland biodiversity in our study system; (ii) erosion of chalky outcrops (natural erosion as well as driven by cattle grazing) is a key factor promoting the richness of cretaceous species in steppe grassland.

Keywords

  • abandonment
  • cattle grazing
  • chalky steppe
  • gully
  • plant community patch
  • succession
access type Open Access

Numeric syntaxonomical analysis of communities of the Molinia caerulea complex in Southwestern of Ukraine

Published Online: 12 Aug 2016
Page range: 63 - 77

Abstract

Abstract

The aims of the paper are: i) to establish the coenotic affinity of each species of the Molinia caerulea complex in the southwest of Ukraine, ii) to present the results of a comparative analysis of the syntaxa in which include Molinia, iii) to explain possible reasons for the expansion of Molinia caerulea in the studied area. The study area ranges from the basins of the Upper Prut River to the Upper Siret River in Ukraine. To determine the coenotical affinity of the studied species, 134 relevés were analysed. The data analysis was carried out using the Modified TWINSPAN algorithm provided by the JUICE software. Ecological features of the communities were analyzed by means of a DCA-ordination and phytoindication assessment. It was revealed that in the studied region the species of the Molinia caerulea complex are characterized by a relatively wide coenotic and ecological range and that they can be attributed to different communities of 4 vegetation classes: Molinio-Arrhenatheretea (Polygono bistortae-Trisetion flavescentis, Molinion cearuleae, Arrhenatherion elatioris alliances), Festuco-Brometea (Bromion erecti alliance), Mulgedio-Aconitetea (Calamagrostion villosae alliance), Oxycocco-Sphagnetea (Sphagnion magellanici alliance). This paper presents the results of the floristic composition analyses outlines some ecological peculiarities and discusses the conservational values of the identified syntaxa.

Keywords

  • management
  • mowing
  • Molinia arundinacea
  • M. caerulea
  • ordination
  • Prut-Siret interfluve
  • semi-dry grasslands
  • syntaxonomy
  • wet grasslands
access type Open Access

Syntaxonomy of the Festuco-Brometea class vegetation of the Azov sea coastal zone

Published Online: 12 Aug 2016
Page range: 79 - 104

Abstract

Abstract

Syntaxonomy of the class Festuco-Brometea in Ukraine has barely been still explored. There are some scattered and local data, mainly within the Forest-Steppe zone, which need to be compiled and critically reviewed. Similarly, the Azov Sea coastal zone, which, despite the considerable diversity of habitats, remains unstudied phytosociologically. We have carried out large-scale comparisons of relevés from the Sea of Azov coastline with data from other regions of Ukraine, Europe, and Russia. In total, 2336 relevés were used for the analysis. For the analysis, Modified TWINSPAN classification was used. Diagnostic species were determined by means of the phi fidelity index. In total, 9 associations and 4 subassociations, belonging to four alliances, were identified and categorised as follows: Artemisio-Kochion prostratae (ruderalized steppes), Artemisio tauricae- Festucion valesiacae (saline steppe vegetation on sites affected by the sea or saline ground water), Stipo lessingianae-Salvion nutantis (forb-bunchgrass steppe vegetation) and Tanaceto millefolii-Galatellion villosae (bunchgrass steppes). The last alliance is proposed as a new one.

Keywords

  • bunchgrass steppe
  • classification
  • diagnostic species
  • dry grasslands
  • Eastern Europe
  • numerical analysis
  • TWINSPAN
  • vegetation
access type Open Access

Soil macrofauna (invertebrates) of Kazakhstanian Stipa lessingiana dry steppe

Published Online: 12 Aug 2016
Page range: 105 - 112

Abstract

Abstract

Stipa lessingiana steppes used to be prevalent on the dry Trans-Ural denudation plains, particularly, on the Sub-Ural and the Turgay Plateau. But, most of them have been lost because they were plowed up during the Virgin Land campaign in the second part of 20th century. This paper presents a detailed study of the faunistic composition and the structure of soil-dwelling invertebrate communities (macrofauna) of a temperate-dry bunch feather grass steppe in the Turgai Plateau (Northern-Turgai physical-geographical province of steppe Kazakhstan, Kostanay Oblast). The study site is located in the territory of the Naurzum State Nature Reserve, a part of the UNESCO World Heritage site “Saryarka Steppe and Lakes of Northern Kazakhstan”, where remnants of Virgin S. lessingiana steppes have been preserved to the present day. This region is the driest and most continental in climate of all the dry steppes of Kazakhstan. The total abundance and biomass of soil invertebrate communities in the investigated site were lower than in the northern and western steppe areas. Soil invertebrates are among the major components that determine the functioning of terrestrial natural ecosystems.

Keywords

  • dark chestnut soil
  • Stipa lessingiana steppes
  • soil invertebrate communities (macrofauna)
  • structure
access type Open Access

Effect of summer fire on cursorial spider (Aranei) and beetle (Coleoptera) assemblages in meadow steppes of Central European Russia

Published Online: 12 Aug 2016
Page range: 113 - 132

Abstract

Abstract

Fire is an important structuring force for grassland ecosystems. Despite increased incidents of fire in European steppes, their impact on arthropod communities is still poorly studied. We assessed short-term changes in cursorial beetle and spider assemblages after a summer fire in the meadow steppe in Central European Russia. The responses of spider and beetle assemblages to the fire event were different. In the first post-fire year, the same beetle species dominated burnt and unburnt plots, the alpha-diversity of beetle assemblages was similar, and there were no pronounced changes in the proportions of trophic groups. Beetle species richness and activity density increased in the second post-fire year, while that of the spiders decreased. The spider alpha-diversity was lowest in the first post-fire year, and the main dominants were pioneer species. In the second year, the differences in spider species composition and activity density diminished. The main conclusion of our study is that the large-scale intensive summer fire caused no profound changes in cursorial beetle and spider assemblages of this steppe plot. Mitigation of the fire effect is explained by the small plot area, its location at the edge of the fire site and the presence of adjacent undisturbed habitats with herbaceous vegetation.

Keywords

  • arthropod assemblage
  • Galich’ya Gora
  • meadow steppe
  • summer fire
access type Open Access

Water Buffaloes grazing behaviour at the Lake Kerkini National Park, Northern Greece

Published Online: 12 Aug 2016
Page range: 133 - 142

Abstract

Abstract

The monthly variation of Greek water buffaloes’ grazing behaviour was investigated at the Lake Kerkini National Park in Greece. Direct observations were carried out on six female buffaloes for two consecutive days every month for a one-year period, and the time spent (in minutes) on their grazing-related activities (feeding, moving, wallowing, standing, ruminating, drinking, and lying) was recorded. Moreover, social and aggressive interactions and self-grooming were recorded as number of events. Also, the daily distance travelled by buffaloes was recorded with a handheld GPS. Buffaloes travelled on average 6.9 km/day, and they walked their longest distance in June (10.7 km/day) and their shortest in September (2.9 km/day). They spent more time (P<0.05) on feeding (309.2 min/day) compared to moving (121.7 min/day), wallowing (27.9 min/day), standing (20.2 min/day), ruminating (15.4 min/day), drinking (4.7 min/day) and lying (4.2 min/day). Greek water buffaloes seem to be sociable rather than aggressive animals as they devote to these activities on average 18.2 vs 0.5 events/day. We can conclude that the animals adjust their grazing behaviour to climatic conditions and the availability of forage resources.

Keywords

  • Bubalus bubalis
  • grazing activities
  • grasslands
  • social behaviour
10 Articles
access type Open Access

Ecology and Conservation of Steppes and Semi-Natural Grasslands

Published Online: 12 Aug 2016
Page range: 5 - 14

Abstract

Abstract

Palaearctic grasslands encompass a diverse variety of habitats, many of high nature value and vulnerability. The main challenges are climate-change, land-use change, agricultural intensification and abandonment. Many measures are in place to address these challenges, through restoration and appropriate management, though more work is necessary. We present eight studies from China/Germany, Greece, Kazakhstan, Russia and Ukraine. The papers cover a wide range of grassland and steppe habitats and cover vegetation ecology, syntaxonomy and zoology. We also conducted a systematic search on steppe and grassland diversity. The greatest number of studies was from China, followed by Germany and England. We conclude that the amount of research being carried out on Eurasian grasslands is inadequate considering their high levels of biodiversity and vulnerability. We hope to encourage readers to address current major challenges, such as how to manage grasslands for the benefit of diverse taxa, to ensure that conservation initiatives concentrate on sites where there is good potential for success and for the generation of realistic and viable conservation strategies.

Keywords

  • abandonment
  • diversity
  • extensive agriculture
  • grasslands
  • homogenization
  • intensive agriculture
  • land-use change
access type Open Access

The Eurasian Dry Grassland Group (EDGG) in 2015–2016

Published Online: 12 Aug 2016
Page range: 15 - 19

Abstract

access type Open Access

Mountain pastures of Qilian Shan: plant communities, grazing impact and degradation status (Gansu province, NW China)

Published Online: 12 Aug 2016
Page range: 21 - 35

Abstract

Abstract

Environmental degradation of pasture areas in the Qilian Mountains (Gansu province, NW China) has increased in recent years. Soil erosion and loss of biodiversity caused by overgrazing is widespread. Changes in plant cover, however, have not been analysed so far. The aim of this paper is to identify plant communities and to detect grazing-induced changes in vegetation patterns. Quantitative and qualitative relevé data were collected for community classification and to analyse gradual changes in vegetation patterns along altitudinal and grazing gradients. Detrended correspondence analysis (DCA) was used to analyse variation in relationships between vegetation, environmental factors and differential grazing pressure. The results of the DCA showed apparent variation in plant communities along the grazing gradient. Two factors - altitude and exposure - had the strongest impact on plant community distribution. Comparing monitoring data for the most recent nine years, a trend of pasture deterioration, plant community successions and shift in dominant species becomes obvious. In order to increase grassland quality, sustainable pasture management strategies should be implemented.

Keywords

  • alpine vegetation
  • altitudinal gradient
  • Detrended Correspondence Analysis (DCA)
  • Indicator Species Analysis (ISA)
  • overgrazing
  • pasture degradation
  • species diversity
access type Open Access

Grasslands of intermontane basins of Central Caucasus: land use legacies and present-day state

Published Online: 12 Aug 2016
Page range: 37 - 47

Abstract

Abstract

Mountain semi-natural grasslands of intermontane basins of Central Caucasus, North Ossetia-Alania and the history of its land use were studied. It was found that post-forest, meadow-steppe and partially subalpine grasslands in the study area had been used as croplands for centuries and have been transformed into grazing lands about 60 years ago. In the last 20 years, the grasslands have been underused. It was revealed that current spatial distribution of grasslands is different from the classic scheme of natural climate-induced vegetation distribution. Species composition of meadow steppes is similar in different locations and does not reflect climatic differences of “dry” leeward and “wet” windward slopes of the intermontane basins. Present-day soils reflect parent material differences and erosion degree, but not topography-induced local climate specificity. However, discovered buried soils showed contrasting soil diversity on the southern and northern slopes. It is assumed that the present convergence of soil cover and vegetation is a result of long homogenising human impact and relatively short grassland development.

Keywords

  • buried soils
  • ecosystem convergence
  • land use history
  • mountain meadow-steppes
  • semi-natural grasslands
  • subalpine meadows
access type Open Access

Flora and vegetation of dry grasslands of Northeastern Ukraine, and problems of diversity conservation

Published Online: 12 Aug 2016
Page range: 49 - 62

Abstract

Abstract

The aim of this study was to describe the flora and vegetation of the grasslands of Northeastern Ukraine and to analyse how the steppe vegetation responds to grazing or its abandonment. We studied two gully systems in the east of the Kharkiv Region: the Regional Landscape Park “The Velykyi Burluk-Steppe” (steppe grasslands on chernozem soils; 10 sites) and the National Nature Park “Dvorichanskyi” (steppe grasslands on chalky outcrops; 5 sites). Long-term monitoring data exist for both these sites starting in 1991, shortly after grazing intensity reduced. We recorded the major grassland plant communities (reflecting their successional status) as well as their dominant species. Tree and scrub encroachment increased after management ceased. We conclude that (i) heterogeneous grazing (including ungrazed patches) in space and time is necessary in order to preserve grassland biodiversity in our study system; (ii) erosion of chalky outcrops (natural erosion as well as driven by cattle grazing) is a key factor promoting the richness of cretaceous species in steppe grassland.

Keywords

  • abandonment
  • cattle grazing
  • chalky steppe
  • gully
  • plant community patch
  • succession
access type Open Access

Numeric syntaxonomical analysis of communities of the Molinia caerulea complex in Southwestern of Ukraine

Published Online: 12 Aug 2016
Page range: 63 - 77

Abstract

Abstract

The aims of the paper are: i) to establish the coenotic affinity of each species of the Molinia caerulea complex in the southwest of Ukraine, ii) to present the results of a comparative analysis of the syntaxa in which include Molinia, iii) to explain possible reasons for the expansion of Molinia caerulea in the studied area. The study area ranges from the basins of the Upper Prut River to the Upper Siret River in Ukraine. To determine the coenotical affinity of the studied species, 134 relevés were analysed. The data analysis was carried out using the Modified TWINSPAN algorithm provided by the JUICE software. Ecological features of the communities were analyzed by means of a DCA-ordination and phytoindication assessment. It was revealed that in the studied region the species of the Molinia caerulea complex are characterized by a relatively wide coenotic and ecological range and that they can be attributed to different communities of 4 vegetation classes: Molinio-Arrhenatheretea (Polygono bistortae-Trisetion flavescentis, Molinion cearuleae, Arrhenatherion elatioris alliances), Festuco-Brometea (Bromion erecti alliance), Mulgedio-Aconitetea (Calamagrostion villosae alliance), Oxycocco-Sphagnetea (Sphagnion magellanici alliance). This paper presents the results of the floristic composition analyses outlines some ecological peculiarities and discusses the conservational values of the identified syntaxa.

Keywords

  • management
  • mowing
  • Molinia arundinacea
  • M. caerulea
  • ordination
  • Prut-Siret interfluve
  • semi-dry grasslands
  • syntaxonomy
  • wet grasslands
access type Open Access

Syntaxonomy of the Festuco-Brometea class vegetation of the Azov sea coastal zone

Published Online: 12 Aug 2016
Page range: 79 - 104

Abstract

Abstract

Syntaxonomy of the class Festuco-Brometea in Ukraine has barely been still explored. There are some scattered and local data, mainly within the Forest-Steppe zone, which need to be compiled and critically reviewed. Similarly, the Azov Sea coastal zone, which, despite the considerable diversity of habitats, remains unstudied phytosociologically. We have carried out large-scale comparisons of relevés from the Sea of Azov coastline with data from other regions of Ukraine, Europe, and Russia. In total, 2336 relevés were used for the analysis. For the analysis, Modified TWINSPAN classification was used. Diagnostic species were determined by means of the phi fidelity index. In total, 9 associations and 4 subassociations, belonging to four alliances, were identified and categorised as follows: Artemisio-Kochion prostratae (ruderalized steppes), Artemisio tauricae- Festucion valesiacae (saline steppe vegetation on sites affected by the sea or saline ground water), Stipo lessingianae-Salvion nutantis (forb-bunchgrass steppe vegetation) and Tanaceto millefolii-Galatellion villosae (bunchgrass steppes). The last alliance is proposed as a new one.

Keywords

  • bunchgrass steppe
  • classification
  • diagnostic species
  • dry grasslands
  • Eastern Europe
  • numerical analysis
  • TWINSPAN
  • vegetation
access type Open Access

Soil macrofauna (invertebrates) of Kazakhstanian Stipa lessingiana dry steppe

Published Online: 12 Aug 2016
Page range: 105 - 112

Abstract

Abstract

Stipa lessingiana steppes used to be prevalent on the dry Trans-Ural denudation plains, particularly, on the Sub-Ural and the Turgay Plateau. But, most of them have been lost because they were plowed up during the Virgin Land campaign in the second part of 20th century. This paper presents a detailed study of the faunistic composition and the structure of soil-dwelling invertebrate communities (macrofauna) of a temperate-dry bunch feather grass steppe in the Turgai Plateau (Northern-Turgai physical-geographical province of steppe Kazakhstan, Kostanay Oblast). The study site is located in the territory of the Naurzum State Nature Reserve, a part of the UNESCO World Heritage site “Saryarka Steppe and Lakes of Northern Kazakhstan”, where remnants of Virgin S. lessingiana steppes have been preserved to the present day. This region is the driest and most continental in climate of all the dry steppes of Kazakhstan. The total abundance and biomass of soil invertebrate communities in the investigated site were lower than in the northern and western steppe areas. Soil invertebrates are among the major components that determine the functioning of terrestrial natural ecosystems.

Keywords

  • dark chestnut soil
  • Stipa lessingiana steppes
  • soil invertebrate communities (macrofauna)
  • structure
access type Open Access

Effect of summer fire on cursorial spider (Aranei) and beetle (Coleoptera) assemblages in meadow steppes of Central European Russia

Published Online: 12 Aug 2016
Page range: 113 - 132

Abstract

Abstract

Fire is an important structuring force for grassland ecosystems. Despite increased incidents of fire in European steppes, their impact on arthropod communities is still poorly studied. We assessed short-term changes in cursorial beetle and spider assemblages after a summer fire in the meadow steppe in Central European Russia. The responses of spider and beetle assemblages to the fire event were different. In the first post-fire year, the same beetle species dominated burnt and unburnt plots, the alpha-diversity of beetle assemblages was similar, and there were no pronounced changes in the proportions of trophic groups. Beetle species richness and activity density increased in the second post-fire year, while that of the spiders decreased. The spider alpha-diversity was lowest in the first post-fire year, and the main dominants were pioneer species. In the second year, the differences in spider species composition and activity density diminished. The main conclusion of our study is that the large-scale intensive summer fire caused no profound changes in cursorial beetle and spider assemblages of this steppe plot. Mitigation of the fire effect is explained by the small plot area, its location at the edge of the fire site and the presence of adjacent undisturbed habitats with herbaceous vegetation.

Keywords

  • arthropod assemblage
  • Galich’ya Gora
  • meadow steppe
  • summer fire
access type Open Access

Water Buffaloes grazing behaviour at the Lake Kerkini National Park, Northern Greece

Published Online: 12 Aug 2016
Page range: 133 - 142

Abstract

Abstract

The monthly variation of Greek water buffaloes’ grazing behaviour was investigated at the Lake Kerkini National Park in Greece. Direct observations were carried out on six female buffaloes for two consecutive days every month for a one-year period, and the time spent (in minutes) on their grazing-related activities (feeding, moving, wallowing, standing, ruminating, drinking, and lying) was recorded. Moreover, social and aggressive interactions and self-grooming were recorded as number of events. Also, the daily distance travelled by buffaloes was recorded with a handheld GPS. Buffaloes travelled on average 6.9 km/day, and they walked their longest distance in June (10.7 km/day) and their shortest in September (2.9 km/day). They spent more time (P<0.05) on feeding (309.2 min/day) compared to moving (121.7 min/day), wallowing (27.9 min/day), standing (20.2 min/day), ruminating (15.4 min/day), drinking (4.7 min/day) and lying (4.2 min/day). Greek water buffaloes seem to be sociable rather than aggressive animals as they devote to these activities on average 18.2 vs 0.5 events/day. We can conclude that the animals adjust their grazing behaviour to climatic conditions and the availability of forage resources.

Keywords

  • Bubalus bubalis
  • grazing activities
  • grasslands
  • social behaviour

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