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Diversity and Distribution of Plant Species in Agro-Ecosystems of Egypt

Monier M. Abd El-Ghani and Nadia El-Sawaf
Systematics and Geography of Plants
Vol. 74, No. 2 (2004), pp. 319-336
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3668501
Page Count: 18
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Diversity and Distribution of Plant Species in Agro-Ecosystems of Egypt
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Abstract

Diversity and distribution of plant species at 105 sites (63 in the Oases of the Western Desert and 42 in the Nile land) of seven major irrigated croplands in Egypt was surveyed using stratified sampling technique. These sites were distributed as follows: twelve in Siwa Oasis, fifteen in Bahariya Oasis, fifteen in Farafra Oasis, seven in Dakhla Oasis, fourteen in Kharga Oasis, fifteen in Faiyum Governorate and 27 in central Delta region. A total of 328 species belonging to 212 genera and 59 families were recorded. The highest numbers of species were found in the Faiyum Governorate and Bahariya Oasis while those of Kharga and Dakhla Oases were the lowest. The families with the highest number of species (60% of the total) were Poaceae (53 species), Asteraceae (37 species), Fabaceae (29 species), Cyperaceae (ninteen species), Chenopodiaceae (fifteen species), Brassicaceae (thirteen species), Caryophyllaceae (twelve species), Euphorbiaceae and Polygonaceae (ten species each). Six alien weedy species were recorded for the first time. In this study, five main habitat types were recognised which are supported by spatial analysis: i, farmlands (including irrigated crop-fields and orchards); ii, canal banks; iii, reclaimed lands; iv, waste lands (including moist and abandoned saline field plots but not salt marshes) and; v, water bodies. TWINSPAN and DCA analyses of 105 sites & 186 species of frequency percentages >5% showed six site groups, with the Nile land and the Oases croplands as clearly separated agro-ecosystems.

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