Geografie 2015, 120, 64-83

Changes in non-forest woody vegetation in the south-western part of the White Carpathians (1949–2011)

Katarína Demková, Zdeněk Lipský

Univerzita Karlova v Praze, Přírodovědecká fakulta, katedra fyzické geografie a geoekologie, Albertov 6, 128 43 Praha 2, Czechia

Received April 2014
Accepted January 2015

Non-forest woody vegetation is an important part of the landscape structure and a determining feature of the landscape character. The present study investigates changes in the area covered by non-forest woody vegetation in the landscape of the south-western part of the White Carpathians (western Slovakia) over the course of the last 60 years. The study is based on a comparison of landscape metrics interpreted from aerial photographs taken in 1949, 1986 and 2006. Relations of non-forest woody vegetation to environmental conditions and its present state (qualitative characteristics) mapped in the field are discussed as well. Results confirm a close relationship between the distribution of non-forest woody vegetation and environmental conditions such as elevation, slope, partially also with soil and landscape type. In terms of landscape structure changes, the number of patches as well as the total area of non-forest woody vegetation rapidly decreased due to intensification of agriculture, while extensification recorded during the first observed period, as well continuing extensification, landscape abandonment and social changes throughout the second period also partially contribute to this trend.


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