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Phytosociology and vegetation ecology of uMlalazi Nature Reserve

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dc.contributor.advisor Mostert, T.H.C
dc.contributor.author Zungu, Nqobile S'phesihle
dc.date.accessioned 2017-07-06T09:51:27Z
dc.date.available 2017-07-06T09:51:27Z
dc.date.issued 2017
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10530/1571
dc.description A thesis submitted to the Faculty of Science and Agriculture in partial fulfillment of the Degree of Magister Scientia in the Department of Botany at the University of Zululand, 2017 en_US
dc.description.abstract The need to conduct research on vegetation is important for identifying ecologically sensitive areas and understanding the major ecological processes driving these unique ecosystems in order to conserve and manage them effectively. The aim of this study was to identify, classify, map, describe and name the vegetation clusters in uMlalazi Nature Reserve. A total of 149 relevés were sampled. The sampling was carried out according to the Braun-Blanquet method with the plant data entered in TURBOVEG and exported into Juice. Classification was completed using the modified TWINSPAN algorithm, resulting in thirteen plant communities. These communities are described in terms of their structure, composition and distribution. These communities can be divided into those that occur on clay soils and those that occur on sandy soils. Ordination was carried out using the Non-metric Multidimensional Scaling to investigate the relationship between species and their underlying environmental factors. Ordination revealed that the presence or absence of some environmental factors such as, exposure to salt spray, salt content, moisture availability and clay content are important in shaping most of the communities in the study area. Differences in species richness, salt content, distance from the sea and human induced fire and grazing between plant communities are clearly articulated. Towards the end, the structure, distribution and ecology of the dune communities from pioneer to dune forest is given. The proposed classification, ordination clusters, vegetation map and description of communities can be used for the uMlalazi Nature Reserve management, land-use planning and even further research. The study showed that uMlalazi Nature Reserve serves as an important refuge for plant species and communities of biological and economic significance. en_US
dc.publisher University of Zululand en_US
dc.subject plant communities --Mtunzini --Maputaland --dune succession --coastal dune forest --botanica --conservation importance ratings -- ordination --wetlands --riverine woodland --mangrove forests-- secondary coastal grasslands -- Indian Ocean Coastal Belt Biome en_US
dc.title Phytosociology and vegetation ecology of uMlalazi Nature Reserve en_US
dc.type Thesis en_US

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