8 – Vegetation of temporary marshes

Brief Description

Mediterranean temporary marshes are a unique habitat. In the Mediterranean climate, the rain which falls between autumn ad spring is the source of water.The wet period occurs when temperatures are relatively low, and the marshes dry out quickly in the hot, dry summers, the temporary nature of these marshes thus results from a combination of low precipitation and high evaporation which leads to low water levels in the hot season.It is the irregular seasonal fluctuations in the water cycle that make these wetlands not only a dynamic habitat of scientific interest, but also extremely fragile in the face of anthropogenic pressure which rapidly affects their species composition. Paradoxically, temporary marshes, ideal laboratories for studies of biological richness are little know in terms of their vegetation and fauna. This booklet is based on the available knowledge of their vegetation and general ecology and has been compiled in the hope of providing the key to their conservation, management and  restoration.

Reference: Grillas P, Roché J (1997) Vegetation of temporary marshes. Ecology and management A J Crivelli, J Jalbert (eds) Conservation of Mediterranean wetlands no8, Station Biologique de la Tour du Valat, Arles (France)

ISBN: 2-910368-15-7

Languages: English, French