Wetland Vegetation of Novel Ecosystems as the Biodiversity Hotspots of the Urban-Industrial Landscape
Institute of Biology, Biotechnology and Environmental Protection, Faculty of Natural Sciences, University of Silesia in Katowice, 28 Jagiellońska Str., 40-032 Katowice, Poland
Institute of Environmental Protection and Engineering, Faculty of Materials, Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Bielsko-Biala, Willowa 2 Str., 43-309 Bielsko-Biała, Poland
Technical Institute of Bakrajo, Sulaimani Polytechnic University SPU, Wrme Street 327/76, Qrga, Sulaymaniyah, Kurdistan, Iraq
Mineral and Energy Economy Research Institute, Polish Academy of Sciences, Kraków, J. Wybickiego 7A Str., 31-261 Kraków, Poland
Department of Geoengineering and Raw Materials Extraction, Faculty of Mining, Safety Engineering and Industrial Automation, Silesian University of Technology, Akademicka 2A Str., 44-100 Gliwice, Poland
Institute of Marine and Environmental Sciences, University of Szczecin, Willowa 2 Str., 71-650 Szczecin, Poland
Autor do korespondencji
Agnieszka Hutniczak   

Institute of Biology, Biotechnology and Environmental Protection, Faculty of Natural Sciences, University of Silesia in Katowice, 28 Jagiellońska Str., 40-032 Katowice, Poland
J. Ecol. Eng. 2024; 25(7):317-331
Wetlands represent a small proportion of all habitats. Still, they are very important features within the landscape, particularly in the ecosystem mosaic. They are composed of many specifically adapted organisms. Wetlands spontaneously establish and provide a significant source of heterogeneity and diversity in an urban-industrial landscape. Most of Earth’s wetlands are at risk or have disappeared due to human activity. Apart from natural wetlands, unique anthropogenic wetlands are observed in southern Poland. The aim of study was to assess and analyze the water quality and the spontaneous wetland vegetation which has developed on anthropogenic wetland habitats. The study was conducted on the spontaneous wetland vegetation developed in habitats that emerged due to mineral excavation activities of quarries in the Silesia Upland and Krakow-Częstochowa Upland. The research subjects were wetlands that provide special water chemistry conditions for developing the peat bog vegetation. Water sampling and analyses, vegetation recording, and vegetation numerical analyses were conducted on studied wetlands. The results of a study conducted on flooded post-excavation sites revealed that diverse wetland spontaneous vegetation colonized such habitats. This research showed that anthropogenic wetlands can provide habitats for the development of outstanding biodiversity and form a refuge for calcareous plant species and the subsequently assembled rare peat bog vegetation. The high moisture and the increased presence of magnesium and calcium ions are developing in some sites of the post-mineral excavations. Such habitat conditions in anthropogenic wetlands enhance the occurrence of rare calciphilous species. Maintaining the relevant water conditions is crucial for the protection of these sites. The study presented that, quite frequently, the human-induced transformation results in establishing habitats that provide conditions for refuge organisms, mostly plants crucial for conservation perspective, particularly in the urban-industrial landscape. The additional importance of this study is related to the fact that the area of wetlands decreased. Therefore such anthropogenic wetlands should be integrated into urban planning and industrial site management to enhance biodiversity conservation.
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