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Dorset’s Changing Hedgebanks A proposal to re-survey Professor Good’s Hedgebanks

Defra project BD2107

Abstract

In 1948 A Geographical Handbook of the Dorset Flora (Good 1948) was published. This was the result of an extensive botanical survey carried out by Professor Ronald Good between the years 1931 and 1939. Plant lists were collected from over 7,500 stands and over 300,000 plants were recorded. Out of the 7,500 stands, over 1000 were hedgebanks. In 2002 358 stands were re-surveyed using Good’s methodology with additional detailed information relating to the features of the hedgebank. Habitat change was measured by comparing floristic data from the 1930s with present data. Published autoecological characteristics of plant species were derived from Ellenberg and other published sources. An analysis of the change in the number of plants within major habitat types or plant communities was also made. The results showed that the road verge and bank had gained competitor plants indicative of high fertility and lost plants characteristic of unimproved or semi-improved habitats.

Author(s): Dorest Environmental Records Centre

Journal: Defra project BD2107

Year: 2003

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