Geographical Review | VOL. 87
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Flood Disturbance and the Distribution of Riparian Species Diversity

Publication Date Oct 1, 1997

Abstract

Biodiversity varies considerably in Southern Californian riparian vegetation. The intermediate disturbance hypothesis posits greatest diversity in settings that are subject to moderate‐intensity disturbance. Flood intensity tends to vary systematically in watersheds, potentially imposing patterns of biodiversity. In two study watersheds, species richness increases with flood severity. Diversity, or heterogeneity, is less predictable: Biodiversity patterns in these watersheds are complicated by atypical patterns of flood severity. Although riparian diversity may be intimately dependent on flood disturbance, the relationship is predictable only with due attention to the physiographic details of individual stream networks.

Concepts

Riparian Diversity Flood Disturbance Flood Intensity Biodiversity Patterns Flood Severity Distribution Of Diversity Individual Networks Riparian Species Diversity Intermediate Disturbance Hypothesis Southern Californian

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