fens, floristics, plant community, vegetation, conservation
Over 200 extant fens of varying condition were documented during an extensive inventory conducted in Iowa between 1986 and 1991. Approximately half of the extant fens support endangered, threatened, special concern, or other rare plant species. Approximately 25 fens are outstanding conservation prospects with intact vegetation, high species richness, and rare species. Nearly 40% of all potential fen sites have been destroyed by cultivation or damage; another 30% remain unknown due to lack of a field visit, but most appear on aerial photographs to be very small, disturbed fragments. In addition to their traditionally recognized range in northwest Iowa, fens were found to be numerous and widespread in eastern Iowa. Most (95%) of the extant fens occurred on private lands; these were variously affected by grazing (65%), cropfield edge effects (33%), potential expansion of woody plants (20% ), drainage by tile lines or ditches (10% ), excavation for ponds (2%), and mining of nearby sand and gravel deposits (2%).
Journal of the Iowa Academy of Science
© Copyright 1992 by the Iowa Academy of Science, Inc.
Pearson, John A. and Leoschke, Mark J.
"Floristic Composition and Conservation Status of Fens in Iowa,"
Journal of the Iowa Academy of Science: JIAS: Vol. 99:
, Article 3.
Available at: http://scholarworks.uni.edu/jias/vol99/iss2/3