Development and use of a floristic quality index for coastal Louisiana marshes

Environmental Monitoring and Assessment
By: , and 

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Abstract

The Floristic Quality Index (FQI) has been used as a tool for assessing the integrity of plant communities and for assessing restoration projects in many regions of the USA. Here, we develop a modified FQI (FQImod) for coastal Louisiana wetlands and verify it using 12 years of monitoring data from a coastal restoration project. Plant species that occur in coastal Louisiana were assigned a coefficient of conservatism (CC) score by a local group with expertise in Louisiana coastal vegetation. Species percent cover and both native and non-native species were included in the FQImod which was scaled from 0?100. The FQImod scores from the long-term monitoring project demonstrated the utility of this index for assessing wetland condition over time, including its sensitivity to a hurricane. Ultimately, the FQI developed for coastal Louisiana will be used in conjunction with other wetland indices (e.g., hydrology and soils) to assess wetland condition coastwide and these indices will aid managers in coastal restoration and management decisions.

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Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Development and use of a floristic quality index for coastal Louisiana marshes
Series title Environmental Monitoring and Assessment
DOI 10.1007/s10661-011-2125-4
Volume 184
Issue 4
Year Published 2012
Language English
Publisher Springer
Contributing office(s) National Wetlands Research Center
Description 15 p.
First page 2389
Last page 2403
Country United States
State Louisiana