Aquatic and wetland plants in an area influenced by brown coal strip mining

Zdenka Hroudová, Jaroslav Rydlo

We studied aquatic and marsh vegetation in a region influenced by brown coal strip mining near the town of Bílina, NW Bohemia. Three sites were compared: area before mining activity, and two post-mining sites (spoil heaps). Plants inhabiting water pools and other wet habitats (flooded field depressions, wet ditches, streams and drained pools) were recorded. On spoil heaps, the wet habitats in reclaimed area and in  unreclaimed sites were also compared. The three sites did not differ in total numbers of plant species, but differed in species composition. In the area before mining (mine foreland) some plants absent on spoil  heaps were found (e. g. Carex acuta, C. riparia, Glyceria fluitans, Callitriche platycarpa, Bidens cernuus), and more reed-bed and aquatic species were present there. On both spoil heaps, higher proportions of ruderal and weedy species were found. The spoil heaps differed each other in species pool of unreclaimed habitats (different proportion of aquatic and meadow species), which corresponded to different substrate surface formation. Species such as Phragmites australis, Typha latifolia and T. angustifolia prevailed in littoral habitats at all three sites; absence of tall sedge communities was typical of all of them. Some endangered marsh plant species occurred at all three sites (e. g. Schoenoplectus tabernaemontani), several of them only in mine foreland (e. g. Stellaria palustris, Callitriche platycarpa) and some only on spoil heaps (e. g. Centaurium pulchellum, Bolboschoenus yagara).