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Biodiversité et gestion des écosystèmes prairiaux en Franche-Comté

Abstract : Grassland ecosystems are submitted to human pressure, especially due to agricultural management, preventing their natural succession toward the forest. However, when this pressure become too important, it could lead to a decrease of the diversity of plant communities (especially primary and secondary consumers) and of all communities that depend on them. As biodiversity is recognized to play an important role in the realization of ecosystem functions and services that benefit to human societies every day, important anthropic pressures could alter the maintaining of these services.In order to provide complementary information on the response of plant communities to anthropogenic factors, it is necessary to take into account the complexity of biodiversity, especially by including the various taxonomic, phylogenetic and functional facets of diversity. In addition, the spatial scale has to be taken into account, by comparing alpha (intra-site), beta (inter-site) components of the gamma diversity of a given parcel or region:.In this project, we especially focused on the complementarity of these approaches to diversity in order to assess the response of plant communities of the French Jura Mountains to agricultural practices used in this area. The production of PDO cheese, and especially the Comté cheese, offers an original framework for such investigations as the existence of this production is associated to strict regulations imposed to farmers for the management of their grassland systems. We studied the vegetation of 48 grasslands, split according to an altitudinal gradient (First Plateau, Second Plateau, High Range) by using an original multi-scale sampling design with plot sizes of 0.01, 1, 10 and 1000 m². The agricultural practices used on these 48 parcels have also been recorded by submitting questionnaires to farmers. In addition, we collected data on soil conditions in each parcel, including soil depth and physico-chemical analyses performed on 0 – 10 cm superficial soil samples.[...]The comparison of the species composition of 150 phytosociological relevés recorded in the 1990’s and repeated in 2012 reveals important changes in the floristic composition of grasslands. The general trend observed for the overall set of relevé suggests that contemporary communities are more adapted to frequent and/or intense defoliations, have a higher pastoral value and indicate a higher level of nutrient content in the soil. We also record differences in phylogenetic diversity values between the two sessions of relevés (while the taxonomic diversity of Simpson do not change) and so show that a loss of phylogenetic lineages among time.[...]The accumulation of phosphorous in the soil, associated to increasing nitrogen supply, especially in the form of inorganic fertilizers, can partly explain this trend. Even though we do not record any significant reduction of taxonomic diversity, the functional changes already observed suggest that the diversity could potentially decrease in the future.[...]
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Leslie Mauchamp. Biodiversité et gestion des écosystèmes prairiaux en Franche-Comté. Sciences agricoles. Université de Franche-Comté, 2014. Français. ⟨NNT : 2014BESA2036⟩. ⟨tel-01109132v2⟩

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