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2 May 2016 An analysis of a Hackberry–American Elm–green Ash forest type at Moser Park, Allen County, Indiana
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Moser Park is a property in Allen County, Indiana, managed by New Haven Parks and Recreation. We conducted a plant survey within the forested section of the park, identifying and quantifying abundance of understory, midstory, and overstory plants. We calculated species richness and Shannon's index for all three strata and tested for relationships with environmental variables (i.e., canopy cover, soil compaction, litter depth, and light availability). The majority of understory species are typically associated with disturbed habitats, with very little resemblance to natural, pre-settlement habitat (i.e., low coefficient of conservation values). Understory cover was dominated by Rubus allegheniensis. Midstory stratum was less diverse than the understory and was dominated by an abundance of Fraxinus pennsylvanica, which was also an important species in the overstory. The forest at Moser Park matched the Hackberry–American Elm–Green Ash forest type. There was a lack of both Quercus and many Acer species within Moser Park that are common in the region. Because of the distinct soil types, and disturbance history, a relatively uncommon forest type for the region has developed in Moser Park that differs from the majority of forested land surrounding it.

Published: 2 May 2016

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