Larson, Jason .
The Vascular Flora of Salt Fork State Park, Guernsey County, Ohio.
Salt Fork State Park is the largest Ohio state park, encompassing 8167 hectares and accounting for nearly 10% of all state park land. While the majority of state park land is utilized for public recreation, many parts of these parks are isolated and seldom used by the public. These remote areas potentially provide habitat and protection for endangered and threatened species. However, there is limited information available about the flora and fauna of most Ohio state parks. The purpose of this study was to document thoroughly the vascular plant diversity in Salt Fork State Park. To reduce the likelihood of overlooking species that are rare, inconspicuous or difficult to identify, a list of species that are likely to occur in the park and their preferred habitats was compiled based on the previously documented flora of Guernsey County and surrounding counties. Comprehensive surveys of all habitats in the park were conducted throughout the 2008 and 2009 growing seasons, building on preliminary work (1997 – 2007) carried out before M.S. research was initiated. From 1997 to 2009, 117 families, 390 genera, and 719 species of vascular plants were identified within park boundaries. Of the 719 species, 142 comprise new records for Guernsey County. Among them were populations of the state endangered Carex bushii and Viola tripartita var. glaberrima. In addition, a non-native species, Kyllinga gracillima, was found for the first time in Ohio. Voucher specimens for all species found in 2008 and 2009 have been or will be deposited in the Ohio University Floyd Bartley Herbarium. This study is intended to provide a model for those who seek to document the floristic diversity of other state parks and evaluate habitats for conservation management and habitat restoration.
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1 - Ohio University, Department of Environmental and Plant Biology, Porter Hall 315, Athens, OH, 45701, U.S.A.
Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Sections
Location: 551A/Convention Center
Date: Monday, August 2nd, 2010
Time: 2:00 PM