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Succession A Case Study – Poynton Park and Pool – an arrested hydrosere
Some Definitions : Just to remind you! • Sere: Another name for succession. A set of stages of evolution of an ecosystem. • Pioneer stage: First stage in a sere which is dominated by opportunist species. • Climax stage: Final stage in a sere where all species are in balance.
Primary Succession Priseres Xerosere (dry environment) Hydrosere (wet environment) Lithosere (bare rock) Psammosere (sand dunes) Hydrosere (fresh water) Halosere (salt water) i.e. Poynton Pool
Hydrosere: • Describe the changes that you see.
Hydrosere: • The gradual conversion of ponds and lakes to forest ecosystems. • With time ponds and lakes are gradually filled with eroded sediments. • The sediments moves in the shorelines and eventually fills in the lake. • The plant sequence is as follows: lake plants, reeds, grasses, shrubs, & trees.
Poynton Park : a hydrosere in arrested succession. Macclesfield Borough Council manage the Park and the Pool which together cover an area of 21 hectares.
Gardens of houses along Anglesey Drive arrest the natural succession by cutting back vegetation in their gardens. Sluice gate on the west bank allows water to leave the Pool and succession is therefore stopped as the flow of water is too great. Anglers (primarily) along the west bank also limit the growth of vegetation as Stockport Angling Federation cut back vegetation for pegs while maintaining larger trees as cover for fish. Initial water source for the Pool from the mining industry. This area is now an example of climax vegetation with oak woodland, a shrub under layer. It is protected from human interference by being fenced off allowing only grazing by rabbits and other animals. At the south end of the Pool the flow of water is less and therefore succession is more advanced with a shallowing of the water, increased nutrient content and a greater variety of hydrophytic plants. Large areas of the Park are used as grazing for sheep by local farmers. The sheep will reduce the diversity of naturally occurring vegetation by grazing but will add nutrients to the soil through dung.
Poynton Pool looking south east – note the reeds at the water’s edge and the willow trees in the water on the left.
What evidence of ecological succession can you see in this photo? A clear photo ‘through’ succession – what stages can you see?