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WWRC 97-05gg
Stubble Height and Function of Riparian Communities: Channel and Plant Succession


Stubble height, a measurement of remaining vegetation at a time the measurement occurs will be discussed as it influences sediment deposition. Because sediment deposition may occur, succession from one stream channel configuration to another should take place. Therefore, groundwater relationships to plants growing along these changing banks may be altered and plant succession may also occur. Evidence will be presented to show that plants which require high water tables most of the growing season may be at a disadvantage to compete with plants which can withstand a rapid decline in the water table and therefore, these may become dominate along a mature channel system. Furthermore, stubble height required to maintain plant health may also decrease when plant succession occurs. Therefore, managers should consider using flexible stubble height standards to manage sediment deposition and grazing of riparian zones.

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