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Article

Effects of a Short-Term Trampling Experiment on Alpine Vegetation in the Tatras, Slovakia

1
Institute of Landscape Ecology of Slovak Academy of Sciences, Akademická 2, 949 10 Nitra, Slovakia
2
Faculty of Natural Sciences, Constantine the Philosopher University in Nitra, Trieda A. Hlinku 1, 949 01 Nitra, Slovakia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Kyle Maurice Woosnam
Sustainability 2021, 13(5), 2750; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13052750
Received: 29 January 2021 / Revised: 25 February 2021 / Accepted: 26 February 2021 / Published: 3 March 2021
Over the past decades, outdoor recreation in mountains has become progressively more important and as a result human induced potential damage has increased. Alpine communities are particularly susceptible to human recreational activities, such as tourist trampling. Although there are a number of studies that explicitly assess the effects of trampling on alpine communities, they do not reflect on terrains with a rich topography and the presence of more communities in very small areas. In this study, effects of short-term trampling on some alpine communities in the Tatras, the highest mountains of the Carpathians, were studied experimentally. Vulnerability to disturbance was compared among plant communities in terms of resistance and resilience, which are based on cover measurements. With proximity to trampling intensity, we found a significant decrease in plant cover and abundance of deciduous shrubs, lichens, and mosses. These results demonstrate that human trampling in alpine communities has major negative impacts on lichen and moss abundance and species richness. A short-term trampling experiment required several years of community regeneration. Therefore, management plans should discourage hiking activity off paths and restrict recreational activities. View Full-Text
Keywords: tourist trampling; alpine vegetation; Tatras; resistance of vegetation tourist trampling; alpine vegetation; Tatras; resistance of vegetation
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MDPI and ACS Style

Piscová, V.; Ševčík, M.; Hreško, J.; Petrovič, F. Effects of a Short-Term Trampling Experiment on Alpine Vegetation in the Tatras, Slovakia. Sustainability 2021, 13, 2750. https://doi.org/10.3390/su13052750

AMA Style

Piscová V, Ševčík M, Hreško J, Petrovič F. Effects of a Short-Term Trampling Experiment on Alpine Vegetation in the Tatras, Slovakia. Sustainability. 2021; 13(5):2750. https://doi.org/10.3390/su13052750

Chicago/Turabian Style

Piscová, Veronika, Michal Ševčík, Juraj Hreško, and František Petrovič. 2021. "Effects of a Short-Term Trampling Experiment on Alpine Vegetation in the Tatras, Slovakia" Sustainability 13, no. 5: 2750. https://doi.org/10.3390/su13052750

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