ANTHROPOGENIC IMPACTS ON POPULATION STRUCTURE AND FLORISTIC COMPOSITION OF BLACK SAXAUL (HALOXYLON APHYLLUM MINKW.) WOODLANDS IN ILI DELTA REGION, KAZAKHSTANAlina Aleksandrovna Zhaglovskaya Saule Sagidullaevna Aidosova, Nursulu Ziyakhanovna Akhtayeva Asem Tleuzhanovna Mamurova, Dinara Dautovna Yessimova and Galymbek Sovetovich Azhaev
Haloxylon aphyllum Minkw. (Black Saxaul) is the main forest forming species in Kazakhstan. While the latter is a rain fed shrub distributed on sand dunes, the former is a phreatophyte, which uses groundwater as water source. Therefore, Black Saxaul is mainly distributed on current and Ancient river terraces. Saxaul played and still plays an important role as fodder plant and fuel wood for herders in the Turanian Deserts. Due to over-grazing and over-exploitation for fuel wood during the past fifty years, the Saxaul dominated vegetation has been considerably degraded. Haloxylon woodlands which grow in desert ecosystems suffer from anthropogenic effect severely. Our study concerned human impact on woodland structure and biodiversity of populations. In the study it was done a distribution of trees by classes according to root collar diameter, density, regeneration, and analysis of floristic composition of plots with various level of anthropogenic effect. All sites suffered from human activity, and were on different stage of regeneration. As a result of clean cuttings in the past the majority of woodlands present homogeneous size structure. The most disturbed plots show random structure of populations and very low level of regeneration or lack of it. When plots are disturbed reasonably regeneration of Saxaul populations goes well, especially on plots with density equal to up to 1000 shrubs/ha. The plot which is located very far from residential areas was studied having the most sustainable structure under favourable growth conditions. Biodiversity level is higher on plots with less anthropogenic effect. Nevertheless, both sites show intrusion of weed and ungrazed plants.
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