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Memorias de investigación
Ponencias en congresos:
An assessment of riparian vegetation patches as ecological corridors. The case of the Guadarrama river in central Spain
Áreas de investigación
  • Hidrología
The European Water Framework Directive (WFD, 2000/60/CE) strengths the State Members to plan and apply new criteria for water resources management. The river is not longer considered as just a stream and becomes a fluvial ecosystem. One of the objectives of the WFD is the river to reach a good ecological status, being the structure of the riparian forest one of the ecosystem components which condition is used for the assessment of its status. Most of the riparian vegetation quality indices do not take into account so far the corridor function; and those that actually do it, do not assess the structural connectivity at landscape level. In areas of temperate weather conditions, where humans have considerably transformed the landscape, river corridors are often the only way to connect isolated natural patches. This is the case in many parts of Spain, but also in many of the countries of the Mediterranean basin. In these areas, and in order to meet the WFD requirements, technicians and resource planners would have to develop mechanisms for: (i) characterizing riparian forest fragmentation, (ii) identifying key segments for landscape connectivity and, (iii) establishing segments for conservation or restoration of the riparian forest structure, especially, with the objective of preserving the structural connectivity. The work presented herein aims at providing managers with a procedure that allows them to meet the three aforementioned objectives: (i) a methodology for rapid riparian forest fragmentation assessment, (ii) a protocol for ranking river segments according to their importance in the connectivity of natural areas and, (iii) a set of criteria to determine whether a segment is to be preserved or should be restored to reestablish its functionality as corridor. This work was applied on the Guadarrama River (central Spain, near Madrid), in a densely populated area (305 habitants per km2). The materials we used involved: (i) ortho-photographs, (ii) topographic maps, (iii) satellite images and, (iv) ancillary maps and information. As a result, we were able: (i) to characterize the fragmentation status of the riparian forests, all along the drainage network of the Guadarrama River and, (ii) to identify 17 segments (from up to 43 in which the network was divided) for priority intervention (either to be protected or to be restored). In this sense, we identify 8 segments that had to be protected provided that they were the only mean to keep the corridor function within the area; and 9 more segments which riparian forests had to be urgently restored in order to reestablish the connectivity between areas of high environmental importance.
Nombre congreso
IUFRO: Landscape Ecology International Conference
Tipo de participación
Lugar del congreso
Braganza (Portugal)
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Título de las actas
Book of abstracts of IUFRO: Landscape Ecology International Conference
Esta actividad pertenece a memorias de investigación
  • Autor: Jose Anastasio Fernandez Yuste (UPM)
  • Autor: Leticia Carrero Diez (UPM)
  • Autor: Carolina Martinez Santa-Maria (UPM)
  • Autor: Silvia Merino De Miguel (UPM)
Grupos de investigación, Departamentos, Centros e Institutos de I+D+i relacionados
  • Creador: Grupo de Investigación: Ecología y Gestión Forestal Sostenible
  • Grupo de Investigación: Hidrobiología
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