INVESTIGATING THE DUNE-BUILDING FEEDBACK AT THE PLANT LEVEL: INSIGHTS FROM A MULTISPECIES FIELD EXPERIMENT Public Deposited

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Last Modified
  • March 22, 2019
Creator
  • Mullins, Elsemarie
    • Affiliation: College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Geological Sciences
Abstract
  • Coastal foredunes provide the first line of defense against rising sea levels. There is increasing interest in understanding and modeling foredune formation and post-storm recovery. To provide guidance for model parameterizations, we conducted a transplant experiment on Hog Island, VA. We tracked leaf growth and found that Ammophila breviligulata and Uniola paniculata grew more than Spartina patens by a factor of 15% (not statistically significant) and 45%, respectively. Our results also suggest a correlation between transplant growth and total sand deposition for all species at the scale of two years. Based on transplant survival, the seaward limit of vegetation at the end of the experiment was approximately 30 m from the MHWL. Results from this experiment provide evidence for the dune-building capacity of all three species, suggesting S. patens is not a maintainer species, but rather a moderate dune builder.
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DOI
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Advisor
  • Moore, Laura
  • Pavelsky, Tamlin
  • Murray, Allen
  • Benninger, Larry
  • Zinnert, Julie
Degree
  • Master of Science
Degree granting institution
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Graduate School
Graduation year
  • 2018
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