NATURAL AND ECONOMIC VALUES OF SELECTED MEADOW COMMUNITIES IN SOUTHERN POLAND
Published: 28 May 2015
Abstract: Changes in Polish agriculture, which contributed to transitions in land usage, e.g. meadows, started after the political transformation at the beginning of 1990s. When meadows ceased to be used agriculturally, changes in species composition in various meadow communities started to be evident. This tendency is particularly vivid in the southern part of Poland. It is because of worse conditions for agricultural production and the traditionally stressed importance of permanent grasslands. The importance of traditional meadow usage has diminished also due to a decline in herbivorous animals. On the basis of the conducted research in selected parts of southern Poland in the years 2010 – 2013, 14 plant communities which belonged to 3 phytosociological classes, were distinguished. Some of those analyzed communities were annually cut, whereas some meadows were ruled out from mowing in the last few years. The lack of land usage in the analyzed meadow communities curbed the number of vascular plant species. A disparity between the value in use of meadow communities and their environmental advantages was also observed.
Keywords: meadow communities, natural values, economic values, southern poland, biodiversity
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