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Anna Świercz

Reaction of Coniferous Forest Vegetation to Particulate Deposition Under Alkaline Pressure

The aim of this study was to determine direction, rate and character of the changes in coniferous forest communities caused by anthropogenic stress factors (alkaline emission and imission) changing with time. To fulfil this goal, we have performed comprehensive studies of soils and plants at the study sites located in coniferous forest communities remaining under direct influence of cement and lime industry in the Świętokrzyskie Voivodeship. There were differences in the accumulation of elements in pine needles collected at alkalized sites in comparison with needles from the control site: Ca content was 2.5 times higher and Cu, Pb and Sr contents were 2-3 times higher, while Al and Fe, and Mn contents were twice and 10 times lower respectively. SEM analysis of morphological features of pine needle surface, in particular degree of preservation of epicuticular waxes can be as an indicator of assimilatory organ degeneration caused by dust deposition which induces wax layer erosion. Declining species number and biodiversity, particularly conspicuous at the Sitkówka site, was a general tendency observed over the study period (from 18 to 10 years). Other noticeable processes include slow regenerative changes of the community with a tendency towards higher contribution of acidophilic coniferous forest species with lower light and temperature requirements and suppression of meadow, ruderal and associated taxa. Further studies are required in order to define succession rate and direction of changes in species composition of these communities.

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Jadwiga Anna Barga-Więcławska and Anna Świercz

Abstract

The presented paper reports data from malacological and pedological studies carried out at sites representing diverse biotopes (beech wood, coniferous forest, and meadow) located 2 km away from the Dyckerhoff Cement Plant in Sitkówka-Nowiny in 1992 and in 2008–2009. The studies aimed to determine physicochemical properties of soils exposed to cement and limestone dust emission and to identify composition of snail communities inhabiting three different biotopes in relation to physicochemical properties of soils, and to grasp the dynamics of the alkalization-dependent changes in physicochemical properties of soils and their impact on the composition and ecological structure of malacofauna.

Open access

Sławomir Wąsik, Michał Arabski, Karolina Maciejec, Grażyna Suchanek and Anna Świercz

The objective of the present study has been to test the laser interferometry method in terms of its usability for investigating sorption properties of minerals. This method was used to test the absorption capacity of halloysite with reference to glucose, which is often found in industrial wastewater and whose excess can disturb the environmental eco-balance. The sorption capacity of halloysite was thus determined indirectly, basing on the comparison of concentration profiles as well as time characteristics of glucose quantities released from the control solution and from the solution incubated with a halloysite adsorbent. An analysis of glucose diffusion was conducted in a two-chamber membrane system. On the basis of the obtained concentration profiles, the evolution of the concentration field was determined; so were the removal efficiency (%) and the amount of glucose adsorbed at equilibrium (qe, mg/g). The obtained results confirm good sorption properties of halloysite with respect to the investigated substance as well as usability of the method for this kind of investigations. The presented tests suggest that the measurement set-up can be optimised in such as way that visual rendering and testing the kinetics of the adsorbed substance direct release from the studied material become possible.

Open access

Monika Bogdanowicz, Anna Śliwińska-Wyrzychowska, Anna Świercz and Marcin Kiedrzyński

Abstract

Clumps of trees left on the clear-cuttings have an important role in protecting populations of endangered plant species against destruction during silviculture activities. The aim of this study is to describe the changes in the area of the Lycopodium annotinum patches. The area of L. annotinum patch in clump of trees, have been significantly reduced during 5 years after clear-cut. In the first year of the observations, the studied population occupied an area of 69.8 m2 whereas in 2012, it was only 37.5 m2. Most of the shoots were withered away on the south side of the clump. The probable reason was too strong insolation. Shoots that survived were located in the north part of the clump – shielded by young trees and shrubs layer. At this time, the control patch of L. annotinum located inside the forest increased its area. Before the clear-cuttings, the annual growth of vertical shoots of clubmoss was higher in the patch located in future tree clump. After the clear-cutting, growth of shoots in this patch was shorter than in patch located all the time inside the forests. The most effective growth was observed in the third studied patch located in the clear-cutting border. The explanation for this phenomenon could be the higher humidity of habitat on this site. Clumps of trees left after the clear-cutting contribute to the protection of endangered populations, but do not eliminate the significant microhabitat changes. The clubmoss patches located in moist habitats are more likely to survive even if they are partially exposed to the sunlight.

Open access

Anna Świercz and Ewelina Zajęcka

Abstract

Physicochemical properties of soils have a significant impact on the growth and development of vegetation. In urban areas, because of increased human activity, changes occur in both grain-size composition as well as physical and chemical properties of soils. These soils are frequently saline and contaminated with heavy metals, which limit the development of vegetation and cause its necrosis. Elm is a commonly growing tree with low habitat requirements, whose population has been considerably reduced because of progressing Dutch elm disease. This study attempts to assess the relationship of dependency between physicochemical parameters of soils and health status of elms from the area of the City of Kielce. Two elms were selected for the study, that is, one alive tree being a natural monument and one necrotic tree. The soil analysis concerned physicochemical parameters such as size composition, reaction, salinity measured by means of proper electrolyte conductivity (PEC), acidity, organic carbon content, carbonates, nitrogen, and selected elements including heavy metals (Cu, Pb, Zn, Cd, Mn). The study indicates differentiation amongst the physicochemical parameters of the analysed soils. A characteristic feature of the soils being the habitat of the necrotic elm is that they have considerably higher salinity than those being the habitat of the alive elm. Increased levels of sodium and chlorides could negatively affect water transportation in vegetation what might have resulted, amongst others, in necrosis of the tree.

Open access

Aleksandra Świercz, Sylwia Lewandowska, Krzysztof Szaflik, Adam Oleś, Anna Piaseczna-Piotrowska and Maria Respondek Liberska

Abstract

Shunt implantation in utero being a life-saving procedure, may be connected with a wide range of complications. One of them is catheter dislocation, a side effect which may impair the state of the fetus and child. We present a case of a boy with Congenital Adenomatoid Lung Malformation (CALM) type II. Invasive prenatal therapy, complicated by shunt migration did not influence our patient’s health. Moreover, the abnormally located shunt stayed within the child’s chest up to the age of 6 years. No symptoms linked to foreign body presence were observed. Although similar cases were published, we report a situation, in which the catheter was left in the patient’s body for 6 years, for the first time.