Next Article in Journal
Investigation of Residence and Travel Times in a Large Floodplain Lake with Complex Lake-River Interactions: Poyang Lake (China)
Next Article in Special Issue
Model Calibration Criteria for Estimating Ecological Flow Characteristics
Previous Article in Journal
Preliminary Toxicological Evaluation of the River Danube Using in Vitro Bioassays
Previous Article in Special Issue
Spatial Quantification of Non-Point Source Pollution in a Meso-Scale Catchment for an Assessment of Buffer Zones Efficiency
Article Menu

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Water 2015, 7(5), 1969-1990;

The Stability of Revegetated Ecosystems in Sandy Areas: An Assessment and Prediction Index

1,2,* and 1,2
Shapotou Desert Research and Experimental Station, Cold and Arid Regions Environmental and Engineering Research Institute, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou 730000, China
Key Laboratory of Stress Physiology and Ecology in Cold and Arid Regions Gansu Province, Lanzhou 730000, China
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Lutz Breuer
Received: 28 December 2014 / Revised: 15 April 2015 / Accepted: 15 April 2015 / Published: 30 April 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Hydro-Ecological Modeling)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [1291 KB, uploaded 9 June 2015]   |  


The stability and sustainability of revegetated ecosystems is a central topic in ecological research. In this study, long-term monitoring and focused research on vegetation, soil and soil moisture from 2006 to 2012 were used to develop a model for evaluating indices of ecosystem stability using the analytical hierarchy process method. The results demonstrated that rainfall (R), vegetation coverage (C), and surface soil moisture (S) were the three most influential factors among the 14 indicators considered in a revegetated desert area in the Tengger Desert, China. A stability index (SI) was defined as SI = VAR (R) × VAR (C)/VAR (S), and a comparative study was conducted to examine the stability index of the natural vegetation community. The SI was divided into three regimes: SI < 0.006 was stable, 0.006 ≤ SI < 0.015 was semi-stable, and 0.015 ≤ SI was unstable. The stable, semi-stable and unstable periods of revegetated ecosystems in our simulations were 191, 17 and 11 years, respectively, within the total modeling period of 219 years. These results indicated that the revegetated desert ecosystem would be stable in most years during the vegetation succession, and this study presents new ideas for future artificial vegetation management in arid desert regions. View Full-Text
Keywords: sand-fixing vegetation; ecosystem stability; analytical hierarchy process; dynamical model sand-fixing vegetation; ecosystem stability; analytical hierarchy process; dynamical model

Figure 1

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Huang, L.; Zhang, Z. The Stability of Revegetated Ecosystems in Sandy Areas: An Assessment and Prediction Index. Water 2015, 7, 1969-1990.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics



[Return to top]
Water EISSN 2073-4441 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top