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Quercus falcata - Pinus taeda - (Fagus grandifolia, Quercus nigra) / Persea palustris Maritime Forest
Translated Name: Southern Red Oak - Loblolly Pine - (American Beech, Water Oak) / Swamp Bay Maritime Forest
Common Name: Atlantic Coastal Plain Mixed Deciduous Maritime Forest
Unique Identifier: CEGL007540
Classification Approach: International Vegetation Classification (IVC)
Summary: This community and related deciduous-dominated communities occur on the most sheltered sites on barrier islands. They are protected from the most extreme stresses of the maritime environment, such as storm waves and intense salt spray, by high dune ridges and distance from the beach. In addition to Quercus falcata, Pinus taeda, Fagus grandifolia, and Quercus nigra, the canopy may include Carya glabra, Carya pallida, and Liquidambar styraciflua. The subcanopy may include Persea palustris, Carpinus caroliniana, Ilex opaca var. opaca, Cornus florida, Vaccinium arboreum, Ostrya virginiana, Juniperus virginiana, Sassafras albidum, Amelanchier canadensis, Oxydendrum arboreum, Castanea pumila, and Hamamelis virginiana. Shrubs and vines include Gaylussacia frondosa (= var. frondosa), Arundinaria gigantea, Callicarpa americana, Morella cerifera (= Myrica cerifera), Rhus copallinum, Vaccinium stamineum, Vaccinium pallidum, Gaylussacia baccata, Vitis rotundifolia, Toxicodendron radicans, Parthenocissus quinquefolia, Smilax bona-nox, and Gelsemium sempervirens. The herb layer may contain Mitchella repens, Pteridium aquilinum, Carex nigromarginata, Conopholis americana, Hieracium gronovii, Chasmanthium laxum, Prenanthes autumnalis, Cnidoscolus stimulosus, and Piptochaetium avenaceum.



Classification

Classification Confidence: High
Classification Comments: The environment for this community is extremely limited, and it is threatened by coastal development. Wentworth et al. (1993) apparently describe this type (Type 2 [pine forest], Subtype 2); it is noted as transitional in composition between mixed Quercus hemisphaerica - Quercus virginiana - Pinus taeda vegetation (Type 2, Subtype 1) on the one hand, and deciduous Fagus grandifolia - Carya - Quercus - Liquidambar vegetation (Type 3) on the other. In 2008, G. Fleming and M. Schafale conducted an analysis of data from seven Virginia plots and 12 North Carolina plots and concluded that all 19 plots formed an interpretable, if somewhat variable, association-level group. Under the current interpretation, Wentworth's Type 3 would be included in this concept.

Vegetation Hierarchy
Class 1 - Forest & Woodland
Subclass 1.B - Temperate & Boreal Forest & Woodland
Formation 1.B.1 - Warm Temperate Forest & Woodland
Division 1.B.1.Na - Southeastern North American Forest & Woodland
Macrogroup Southeastern Coastal Plain Evergreen Oak - Mixed Hardwood Forest
Group Coastal Live Oak - Hickory - Palmetto Forest
Alliance Southeastern Maritime Live Oak Forest

This is the revised vegetation hierarchy. For more information see Classification Sources and usnvc.org.

Similar Associations
Unique Identifier Name
CEGL006040 Pinus taeda - Quercus (falcata, nigra) / Morella cerifera / Vitis rotundifolia Forest



Related Concepts from Other Classifications

Related Subnational Community Units
These data are subject to substantial ongoing revision and may be out of date for some states.
In the U.S., contact the state Heritage Program for the most complete and up-to-date information at: http://www.natureserve.org/natureserve-network.
Information from programs in other jurisdictions will be posted when they are made available.
Subnation Concept Name Relationship to Standard Confidence Reference
North Carolina Maritime Deciduous Forest Equivalent Certain Schafale 2012


Other Related Concepts
Related Concept Name: Quercus nigra - Pinus taeda - Carya pallida - (Fagus grandifolia) / Symplocos tinctoria / Gelsemium sempervirens Forest
Relationship: = - Equivalent
Reference: Fleming, G. P., P. P. Coulling, K. D. Patterson, and K. Taverna. 2006. The natural communities of Virginia: Classification of ecological community groups. Second approximation. Version 2.2. Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, Division of Natural Heritage, Richmond. [http://www.dcr.virginia.gov/natural_heritage/ncTIV.shtml]
Related Concept Name: Maritime Deciduous Forest
Relationship: B - Broader
Reference: Schafale, M. P., and A. S. Weakley. 1990. Classification of the natural communities of North Carolina. Third approximation. North Carolina Department of Environment, Health, and Natural Resources, Division of Parks and Recreation, Natural Heritage Program, Raleigh. 325 pp.
Related Concept Name: Maritime Upland Forest
Relationship: B - Broader
Reference: Fleming, G. P., P. P. Coulling, K. D. Patterson, and K. Taverna. 2006. The natural communities of Virginia: Classification of ecological community groups. Second approximation. Version 2.2. Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, Division of Natural Heritage, Richmond. [http://www.dcr.virginia.gov/natural_heritage/ncTIV.shtml]
Related Concept Name: Type 2 (pine forest), Subtype 1
Relationship: = - Equivalent
Reference: Wentworth, T. R., M. P. Schafale, A. S. Weakley, R. K. Peet, P. S. White, and C. C. Frost. 1993. A preliminary classification of North Carolina barrier island forests. Pages 31-46 in: C. A. Cole and F. K. Turner, editors. Barrier island ecology of the mid-Atlantic coast: A symposium. Technical Report NPS/SERCAHA/NRTR-93/04. National Park Service, Atlanta, GA.

Ecological Systems Placement

Ecological Systems Placement
Ecological System Unique ID Ecological System Name
CES203.261 Central Atlantic Coastal Plain Maritime Forest


NatureServe Conservation Status
Global Status: G1 (10Jun2008)
Rounded Global Status: G1 - Critically Imperiled
Reasons: EO Rank Estimator v.6.03 was used to assess the global rank. This community is known from only five sites (two of them very small) in extreme southeastern Virginia and on the Outer Banks of North Carolina, where requisite geomorphological conditions (large relict dune systems) allow a largely deciduous forest to develop in a maritime setting. The Virginia occurrence at Cape Henry (First Landing/Seashore State Park and Fort Story) covers an estimated 350 hectares. The North Carolina occurrences (at Nags Head Woods, Kitty Hawk Woods, and two other small sites) cover an estimated 825 hectares. While additional occurrences further south are possible, they are likely to be small. This association is naturally rare and all remaining examples are to some degree threatened (directly or indirectly) by coastal development.

Distribution
Color legend for Distribution Map
United States Distribution: NC, VA
Global Distribution: United States
Global Range: This association is only known from a few sites in extreme southeastern Virginia (Cape Henry) and on the Outer Banks of North Carolina (primarily Nags Head Woods and Kitty Hawk Woods). Additional occurrences are possible further south but likely to be small.

U.S. Forest Service Ecoregions
Domain Name: Humid Temperate Domain
Division Name: Subtropical Division
Province Name: Outer Coastal Plain Mixed Forest Province
Province Code: 232 Occurrence Status: Confident or certain
Section Name: Atlantic Coastal Flatwoods Section
Section Code: 232C Occurrence Status: Confident or certain


Vegetation

Vegetation Summary: This association is a mixed forest with relatively high diversity of woody species. Although Pinus taeda is the most constant canopy tree, it is greatly exceeded in density by associated hardwoods, including Quercus falcata, Fagus grandifolia, Quercus nigra, Carya glabra, Carya pallida, and Liquidambar styraciflua. Characteristic species of the subcanopy layer include Persea palustris, Carpinus caroliniana, Ilex opaca var. opaca, Cornus florida, Vaccinium arboreum, Ostrya virginiana, Juniperus virginiana, Sassafras albidum, Amelanchier canadensis, Oxydendrum arboreum, Castanea pumila, Symplocos tinctoria, and Hamamelis virginiana. Both canopy and subcanopy trees are frequently festooned by Tillandsia usneoides and climbing or scrambling vines of Gelsemium sempervirens, Vitis rotundifolia, Smilax spp., Parthenocissus quinquefolia, and Toxicodendron radicans. The shrub layer is patchy and may include Gaylussacia frondosa (= var. frondosa), Arundinaria gigantea, Callicarpa americana, Morella cerifera (= Myrica cerifera), Rhus copallinum, Vaccinium stamineum, Vaccinium pallidum, Gaylussacia baccata, and Toxicodendron pubescens. The herb layer is typically sparse to patchy. The most constant herbs in 19 plot samples are Mitchella repens, Carex nigromarginata, Conopholis americana, Hieracium gronovii, Pteridium aquilinum, Prenanthes autumnalis, Cnidoscolus stimulosus, Piptochaetium avenaceum, and Chasmanthium laxum. There is considerable compositional variation between the Virginia occurrence and the North Carolina occurrences, which are located about 110 to 130 km apart. Quercus falcata, Carya glabra, Carpinus caroliniana, Callicarpa americana, and Arundinaria gigantea are more characteristic of the North Carolina stands, while Quercus nigra, Carya pallida, Oxydendrum arboreum, Symplocos tinctoria, and Gaylussacia baccata are more characteristic of the Virginia stands.


Environmental Setting

Wetland Indicator: N
Environmental Summary: This community and related deciduous-dominated communities occur on the most sheltered sites on barrier islands. They are protected from the most extreme stresses of the maritime environment, such as storm waves and intense salt spray, by high dune ridges and distance from the beach. Environmental gradients in these habitats change rapidly over short spatial scales and support a mixture of mesophytic and xerophytic species.


Dynamic Processes

Dynamics: The habitat of this association on large relict dune ridges located well back from the ocean provides considerable protection from salt spray and storm surges and allows a greater diversity of deciduous species to occur relative to other maritime forests. Subtle environmental gradients that change rapidly over short distances (e.g., distance from the ocean, depth and type of sand deposits, depth to water table) may account for some of the local variation that is evident in this type.


Plot Sampling & Classification Analysis

Plots stored in VegBank


Authors/Contributors
Concept Author(s): T. Wentworth and M.P. Schafale
Element Description Edition Date: 10Jun2008
Element Description Author(s): T. Wentworth, M.P. Schafale, G.P. Fleming
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Edition Date: 10Jun2008
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Author(s): G.P. Fleming

Ecological data developed by NatureServe and its network of natural heritage programs (see Local Programs) and other contributors and cooperators (see Sources).


References
  • Fleming, G. P., P. P. Coulling, K. D. Patterson, and K. Taverna. 2006. The natural communities of Virginia: Classification of ecological community groups. Second approximation. Version 2.2. Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, Division of Natural Heritage, Richmond. [http://www.dcr.virginia.gov/natural_heritage/ncTIV.shtml]

  • Fleming, G. P., and K. D. Patterson. 2011a. Natural communities of Virginia: Ecological groups and community types. Natural Heritage Technical Report 11-07. Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, Division of Natural Heritage, Richmond. 34 pp.

  • Schafale, M. P. 2012. Classification of the natural communities of North Carolina, 4th Approximation. North Carolina Department of Environment, Health, and Natural Resources, Division of Parks and Recreation, Natural Heritage Program, Raleigh.

  • Schafale, M. P., and A. S. Weakley. 1990. Classification of the natural communities of North Carolina. Third approximation. North Carolina Department of Environment, Health, and Natural Resources, Division of Parks and Recreation, Natural Heritage Program, Raleigh. 325 pp.

  • Schafale, Mike P. Personal communication. Ecologist, North Carolina Department of Environment, Health, and Natural Resources, Division of Parks and Recreation, Natural Heritage Program, Raleigh.

  • Southeastern Ecology Working Group of NatureServe. No date. International Ecological Classification Standard: International Vegetation Classification. Terrestrial Vegetation. NatureServe, Durham, NC.

  • Wentworth, T. R., M. P. Schafale, A. S. Weakley, R. K. Peet, P. S. White, and C. C. Frost. 1993. A preliminary classification of North Carolina barrier island forests. Pages 31-46 in: C. A. Cole and F. K. Turner, editors. Barrier island ecology of the mid-Atlantic coast: A symposium. Technical Report NPS/SERCAHA/NRTR-93/04. National Park Service, Atlanta, GA.


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