succulent Karoo

Assessing the success of experimental rehabilitation on a coastal mineral sands mine in Namaqualand, South Africa

The success of different rehabilitation treatments following surface mining on the arid west coast of South Africa was assessed. Treatments consisting of one or a combination of topsoil addition, plant translocation and seeding were applied to experimental rehabilitation sites in 2001, while the treatment of another site in 2008 combined all three techniques. Vegetation and […]

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Biological soil crusts of the Succulent Karoo: a review

The Succulent Karoo is characterised by a dense coverage of biological soil crusts (biocrusts) belonging to different types and successional stages. Whereas the Soebatsfontein region hosts cyanobacteria-dominated and minor amounts of lichen- and bryophyte-dominated biocrusts, the Knersvlakte comprises a rich cover of hypolithic crusts growing on the sides and undersides of quartz pebbles. Apart from […]

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Response of arthropod communities to plant-community rehabilitation efforts after strip mining on the semi-arid west coast of South Africa

Strip mining in arid ecosystems causes extreme ecological destruction that may take decades to recover. The present study examined the effect of different plant-community rehabilitation treatments on arthropods after strip mining in the arid Namaqualand region of South Africa. Vegetation cover and plant species richness were significantly lower at all rehabilitated sites compared with those […]

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Vegetation responses to seasonal weather conditions and decreasing grazing pressure in the arid Succulent Karoo of South Africa

The Succulent Karoo biome is a renowned centre of biodiversity and endemism in the arid winter rainfall region of South Africa that is threatened by climate change. On 20 permanently marked plots within a biodiversity observatory, species richness and cover were assessed annually from 2002 to 2017 during the growing season. We were interested, firstly, […]

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