Since the 1970s and particularly the works of Tüxen (1978) and Géhu & Rivas-Martínez (1981), dynamico-catenal phytosociology has facilitated the integration of vegetation dynamics by more precisely describing the trajectories of vegetation series. A national habitat mapping program (CarHAB), launched by France's Ministry of Ecology, aims to map the vegetation and vegetation series of metropolitan France at a scale of 1: 25,000 by 2025. In this context, Corsica has been selected as a pilot region, due to its unique characteristics regarding Mediterranean and alticole vegetation.
Plant Landscape of Corsica describes in detail the vegetation series and geoseries (ecology, structure, dynamic trajectories, effects of anthropogenic factors on vegetation dynamics, catenal positioning in the landscape) of two Corsican sectors: Cap Corse and Biguglia pond. These two study sites were selected using two methods:
- For Cap Corse, the typology and mapping are based on an inductive approach, which seeks to understand the dynamics of vegetation by drawing on the mature, substitutional, pioneering and anthropogenic associations likely to exist within a tessellar envelope. These various dynamic stages characterize "the vegetation series" (sigmetum or synassociation), the fundamental unit of symphytosociology (Géhu 2006; Biondi 2011). The aim of symphytosociology is, therefore, to define the vegetation series; in other words, it seeks to identify the repetitive combinations of syntaxa under homogeneous ecological conditions.
- For Biguglia pond, the typology and mapping are based on a deductive approach, which combines (under SIG) the ecological descriptor maps with the vegetation mapping, in order to reveal the tesselas and the natural potential vegetation that underlies them. Thanks to the improvement of GIS techniques, this approach has been frequently used to characterize plant landscapes from vegetation to vegetation geoseries since the 2000s, with applications to the conservation management of natural and semi-natural environments.
- General Introductiona
- Vegetation and Vegetation Series of Cap Corse (With Mapping at 1:25,000)
- Typology and Mapping of Plant Landscape of Biguglia Pond: Application to Planning and Conservation Management
- General Conclusion
- Appendix: Synsystematic Scheme of Cap Corse and Biguglia Pond
Pauline Delbosc is a post-doctoral researcher at the University of Brest’s Géoarchitecture Laboratory. She is currently working on a research project which aims to assess and monitor the conservation status of Atlantic and Mediterranean coastal habitats. Her doctoral thesis focused on the dynamic and catenal phytosociology of vegetation in Corsica, and on developing a methodological approach to categorizing and mapping vegetation series. Her publications focus on biogeography, vegetation and landscape ecology, as well as the mapping of natural and semi-natural habitats. She is a member of the council of the French Society of Phytosociology.
Frédéric Bioret is Director of the University of Brest’s Géoarchitecture Laboratory. His thesis and numerous publications focus on European coastal flora and vegetation, environmental mapping, ecological restoration of Atlantic cliffs, and bioevaluation as a tool for management. He is currently leading research projects that involve the assessment and monitoring of the conservation status of French heathlands and coastal habitats. He is Chair of the French Society of Phytosociology and is involved in several national networks on protected areas.
Christophe Panaïotis holds a PhD in Forest Ecology. His thesis assessed the potential sustainability of the holm oak (Quercus ilex L.) in Fango forest (Corsica). His publications focus on the phytosociological and ecological characterization of habitats, on the natural dynamics of holm oak forests, on the ancient forests of Corsica, and on the mapping of vegetation and landscapes. For several years he led the Habitat Department of the Corsican National Botanical Conservatory. He is currently working at the Species and Natural Habitats Department of the Corsican Environment Office.