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Ecological Zonation As A Tool For Restoration Of Degraded Forests In Northern Mongolia


We developed a geo-vegetation zonation in the Khaan Khentii massif, northern Mongolia. Our specific objective was to assess and classify the response of the tree vegetation to environmental factors operating at a coarse climatic level. We sampled forest ecosystem vegetation, climate, physiographic features, and soil properties. Our analysis included clustering, ordination, classification, and ANOVA techniques. Based on the complex data set, we identified three geo-vegetation zones: forest-steppe, montane and dark taiga zone. We characterized them based on the regional environmental factors; (1) climate as indicated by altitude, i.e., precipitation, (2) geomorphology by an index of the vertical distance to channel network and soils by O horizon thickness and soil types. Birch and aspen ecosystems were excluded as discrete zones due to their broad ecological amplitude.

The geo-vegetation zonation outlined in this paper is the first attempt at quantifying vegetation along with the environment at a macroclimatic level in Mongolia. This coarsescale zonation provides a framework for building a comprehensive ecological classification, a background for sustainable forest management, which is currently unavailable in Mongolia and many central Asian countries. Additionally, it offers a roadmap for a comprehensive ecosystem survey and may act as an information platform and reference for current environmental issues such as forest degradation across Mongolian landscapes. 

About the Authors

Antonín Kusbach
Department of Forest Botany, Dendrology and Geobiocoenology, Faculty of Forestry and Wood Technology, Mendel University, Brno Forest Management Institute, Brandýs nad Labem
Czech Republic

Tadeáš Štěrba
Forest Management Institute, Brandýs nad Labem
Czech Republic

Jan Šebesta
Department of Forest Botany, Dendrology and Geobiocoenology, Faculty of Forestry and Wood Technology, Mendel University, Brno
Czech Republic

Tomáš Mikita
Department of Forest Management and Applied Geoinformatics, Faculty of Forestry and Wood Technology, Mendel University in Brno, Brno
Czech Republic

Enkhtuya Bazarradnaa
School of Agroecology and Business, Mongolian University of Life Sciences, Darkhan Uul
Czech Republic

Sarantuya Dambadarjaa
School of Agroecology and Business, Mongolian University of Life Sciences, Darkhan Uul
Czech Republic

Martin Smola
Department of Forest Botany, Dendrology and Geobiocoenology, Faculty of Forestry and Wood Technology, Mendel University, Brno Lesprojekt Východní Čechy Ltd. Company, Hradec Králové
Czech Republic


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For citation:

Kusbach A., Štěrba T., Šebesta J., Mikita T., Bazarradnaa E., Dambadarjaa S., Smola M. Ecological Zonation As A Tool For Restoration Of Degraded Forests In Northern Mongolia. GEOGRAPHY, ENVIRONMENT, SUSTAINABILITY. 2019;12(3):98-116.

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