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Alnus (incana ssp. rugosa, serrulata) - Cornus amomum Tidal Shrub Swamp
Translated Name: (Speckled Alder, Hazel Alder) - Silky Dogwood Tidal Shrub Swamp
Common Name: North Atlantic Fresh Tidal Shrub Swamp
Unique Identifier: CEGL006337
Classification Approach: International Vegetation Classification (IVC)
Summary: This type comprises tidal freshwater, or perhaps also oligohaline, shrublands dominated by Alnus serrulata and/or Alnus incana ssp. rugosa. It is found in coastal areas with tidally-influenced river systems in the North Atlantic. Floodwaters are typically slightly acidic (pH less than 5) and soils are usually mineral without significant peat deposits. In some examples one or both of these may be characteristically dominant or nearly so. Other examples may be more semi-open with a mixed canopy of Alnus with other shrubs such as Cornus amomum, Rosa palustris, Ilex verticillata, Viburnum dentatum, Clethra alnifolia, and Lindera benzoin. Other woody plants which may be present include Sambucus nigra ssp. canadensis, Salix spp., Amorpha fruticosa, Cephalanthus occidentalis, Decodon verticillatus, Toxicodendron vernix, and Toxicodendron radicans. More northern examples may contain Viburnum recognitum and Spiraea alba var. latifolia. Some shrub associates include Decodon verticillatus and Toxicodendron vernix; some herbaceous associates are Osmunda regalis var. spectabilis, Thelypteris palustris var. pubescens, Galium spp., Onoclea sensibilis, Polygonum punctatum, Apios americana, Typha latifolia, Peltandra virginica, Pontederia cordata, Mikania scandens, Symphyotrichum novi-belgii, Boehmeria cylindrica, Impatiens capensis, Triadenum walteri, Asclepias incarnata, Carex atlantica ssp. atlantica, Platanthera clavellata, and Xyris torta. Carex stricta may also be present, and there is a great deal of micro-relief (tussocks and furrows) leading to high species diversity.



Classification

Classification Confidence: Low
Classification Comments: This type does not extend into the embayed coastal area of Virginia (G. Fleming pers. comm.) and as currently defined is not believed to be present in the Chesapeake Bay region of either VA or MD (P. Coulling pers. comm.). Tidal freshwater shrublands of VA are treated in Alnus serrulata - Salix nigra / Pilea (fontana, pumila) Tidal Shrub Swamp (CEGL006843).

Vegetation Hierarchy
Class 2 - Shrub & Herb Vegetation
Subclass 2.C - Shrub & Herb Wetland
Formation 2.C.4 - Temperate to Polar Freshwater Marsh, Wet Meadow & Shrubland
Division 2.C.4.Ne - Atlantic & Gulf Coastal Marsh, Wet Meadow & Shrubland
Macrogroup Atlantic & Gulf Coastal Fresh-Oligohaline Tidal Marsh
Group Atlantic & Gulf Coastal Fresh-Oligohaline Tidal Marsh
Alliance Tidal Alder - Dogwood Shrub Swamp

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

Similar Associations
Unique Identifier Name
CEGL006062 Alnus incana - Cornus (amomum, sericea) / Clematis virginiana Shrub Swamp
CEGL006165 Acer rubrum - Fraxinus pennsylvanica / Polygonum spp. Floodplain Forest
CEGL006414 Cornus amomum - Alnus serrulata Shrub Swamp
CEGL006843 Alnus serrulata - Salix nigra / Pilea (fontana, pumila) Tidal Shrub Swamp



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
Delaware North Atlantic Fresh Tidal Shrub Swamp Equivalent Certain Coxe 2009
Maine Willow - alder tidal shrubland (provisional) Equivalent   Gawler and Cutko 2010
Massachusetts Fresh/Brackish Tidal Shrubland Equivalent   Swain and Kearsley 2001
New Jersey Freshwater tidal swamp Undetermined   Breden 1989
New York Freshwater tidal swamp Broader   Edinger et al. 2002


Other Related Concepts
Related Concept Name: Alnus incana ssp. rugosa - Cornus amomum - Ilex verticillata tidally-flooded shrublands
Relationship: = - Equivalent
Reference: Metzler, K., and J. Barrett. 2006. The vegetation of Connecticut: A preliminary classification. State Geological and Natural History Survey, Report of Investigations No. 12. Connecticut Natural Diversity Database, Hartford, CT.
Related Concept Name: Alnus serrulata - Cornus amomum Shrubland
Relationship: = - Equivalent
Reference: Clancy, K. 1996. Natural communities of Delaware. Unpublished review draft. Delaware Natural Heritage Program, Division of Fish and Wildlife, Delaware Division of Natural Resources and Environmental Control, Smyrna, DE. 52 pp.
Related Concept Name: Alnus serrulata - Viburnum recognitum / Impatiens capensis Tidal Shrubland
Relationship: = - Equivalent
Reference: Harrison, J. W., and P. Stango, III. 2003. Shrubland tidal wetland communities of Maryland's Eastern Shore: Identification, assessment and monitoring. Maryland Natural Heritage Program, Maryland Department of Natural Resources, Annapolis. 118 pp.
Related Concept Name: Freshwater tidal marsh
Relationship: B - Broader
Reference: Collins, B. R., and K. H. Anderson. 1994. Plant communities of New Jersey. Rutgers University Press, New Brunswick, NJ. 287 pp.
Related Concept Name: Southern New England / Gulf of Maine Fresh/ Brackish Tidal Swamp
Relationship: B - Broader
Reference: Rawinski, T. 1984a. Natural community description abstract - southern New England calcareous seepage swamp. Unpublished report. The Nature Conservancy, Boston, MA. 6 pp.

Ecological Systems Placement

Ecological Systems Placement
Ecological System Unique ID Ecological System Name
CES201.579 Acadian Estuary Marsh
CES203.282 Northern Atlantic Coastal Plain Tidal Swamp
CES203.516 Northern Atlantic Coastal Plain Fresh and Oligohaline Tidal Marsh


NatureServe Conservation Status
Global Status: GNR (15Aug1997)
Rounded Global Status: GNR - Not Yet Ranked

Distribution
Color legend for Distribution Map
United States Distribution: CT, DE, MA, MD, ME, NJ, NY, PA
Canadian Province Distribution: QCpotentially occurs
Global Distribution: Canada, United States
Global Range: This association is found in coastal areas with tidally influenced river systems from Maine to Maryland in the North Atlantic.

U.S. Forest Service Ecoregions
Domain Name: Humid Temperate Domain
Division Name: Hot Continental Division
Province Name: Eastern Broadleaf Forest (Oceanic) Province
Province Code: 221 Occurrence Status: Confident or certain
Section Name: Lower New England Section
Section Code: 221A Occurrence Status: Confident or certain
Section Name: Hudson Valley Section
Section Code: 221B Occurrence Status: Confident or certain
Division Name: Subtropical Division
Province Name: Outer Coastal Plain Mixed Forest Province
Province Code: 232 Occurrence Status: Confident or certain
Section Name: Middle Atlantic Coastal Plain Section
Section Code: 232A Occurrence Status: Confident or certain
Section Name: Coastal Plains and Flatwoods, Lower Section
Section Code: 232B Occurrence Status: Confident or certain


Vegetation

Vegetation Summary: This shrubland is dominated by Alnus serrulata at the southern end of the range and/or Alnus incana ssp. rugosa in more northerly examples, where one or both of these may be characteristically dominant or nearly so. Other examples may be more semi-open with a mixed canopy of Alnus with other shrubs such as Cornus amomum, Rosa palustris, Ilex verticillata, Viburnum dentatum, Clethra alnifolia, and Lindera benzoin. Other woody plants which may be present include Sambucus nigra ssp. canadensis (= Sambucus canadensis), Salix spp., Amorpha fruticosa, Cephalanthus occidentalis, Decodon verticillatus, Toxicodendron vernix, and Toxicodendron radicans. More northern examples may contain Viburnum recognitum and Spiraea alba var. latifolia (= Spiraea latifolia). Carex stricta may also be present, and there is a great deal of micro-relief (tussocks and furrows) leading to high species diversity. Some herbaceous associates are Osmunda regalis var. spectabilis, Thelypteris palustris var. pubescens, Galium spp., Onoclea sensibilis, Pilea fontana, Polygonum punctatum, Apios americana, Typha latifolia, Peltandra virginica, Pontederia cordata, Mikania scandens, Symphyotrichum novi-belgii (= Aster novi-belgii), Boehmeria cylindrica, Impatiens capensis, Triadenum walteri, Asclepias incarnata, Carex atlantica ssp. atlantica (= Carex incomperta), Platanthera clavellata, and Xyris torta.

Vegetation Composition (incomplete)
Species Name Rounded Global Status Growth Form Stratum Charact-
eristic
Dominant Constant
Cover Class %
Con-
stancy
%
Alnus incana ssp. rugosa GNR Broad-leaved deciduous shrub Tall shrub/sapling  
 
 
Alnus serrulata GNR Broad-leaved deciduous shrub Tall shrub/sapling  
 
 


Environmental Setting

Wetland Indicator: Y
Environmental Summary: This association occurs in freshwater tidal systems in fresh to brackish reaches of tidal rivers along the marsh-upland transition. This shrubland is best developed along major tidal river systems that have a gradual elevation gradient, and it generally occurs between mean high tide level and mean high water level of annual river flooding in the spring; it is generally flooded irregularly by spring tides. Substrate is alluvial and fine silty loam, loamy sand, or fine- or medium-grained sand without significant peat deposits. There is distinct hummock-and-hollow micro-relief.


Dynamic Processes


Plot Sampling & Classification Analysis

Plots stored in VegBank


Authors/Contributors
Concept Author(s): L.A. Sneddon
Element Description Edition Date: 02Jan2013
Element Description Author(s): S.L. Neid

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


References
  • Breden, T. F. 1989. A preliminary natural community classification for New Jersey. Pages 157-191 in: E. F. Karlin, editor. New Jersey's rare and endangered plants and animals. Institute for Environmental Studies, Ramapo College, Mahwah, NJ. 280 pp.

  • Breden, T. F., Y. R. Alger, K. S. Walz, and A. G. Windisch. 2001. Classification of vegetation communities of New Jersey: Second iteration. Association for Biodiversity Information and New Jersey Natural Heritage Program, Office of Natural Lands Management, Division of Parks and Forestry, New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, Trenton.

  • CDPNQ [Centre de données sur le patrimoine naturel du Québec]. No date. Unpublished data. Centre de données sur le patrimoine naturel du Québec, Québec.

  • Clancy, K. 1996. Natural communities of Delaware. Unpublished review draft. Delaware Natural Heritage Program, Division of Fish and Wildlife, Delaware Division of Natural Resources and Environmental Control, Smyrna, DE. 52 pp.

  • Collins, B. R., and K. H. Anderson. 1994. Plant communities of New Jersey. Rutgers University Press, New Brunswick, NJ. 287 pp.

  • Coulling, Phil. Personal communication. Vegetation Ecologist. Department of Conservation & Recreation, 217 Governor St., Richmond, VA 23219.

  • Coxe, R. 2009. Guide to Delaware vegetation communities. Spring 2009 edition. State of Delaware, Division of Fish and Wildlife, Delaware Natural Heritage Program, Smyrna.

  • Eastern Ecology Working Group of NatureServe. No date. International Ecological Classification Standard: International Vegetation Classification. Terrestrial Vegetation. NatureServe, Boston, MA.

  • Edinger, G. J., D. J. Evans, S. Gebauer, T. G. Howard, D. M. Hunt, and A. M. Olivero, editors. 2014a. Ecological communities of New York state. Second edition. A revised and expanded edition of Carol Reschke's ecological communities of New York state. New York Natural Heritage Program, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, Albany, NY.

  • Fleming, Gary P. Personal communication. Ecologist, Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, Division of Natural Heritage, Richmond, VA.

  • Gawler, S. C. 2001. Natural landscapes of Maine: Natural community profiles. Open (non-forested) types. Final review draft, July 2001. Maine Natural Areas Program. Department of Conservation. Augusta, ME.

  • Gawler, S. C. 2002. Natural landscapes of Maine: A guide to vegetated natural communities and ecosystems. Maine Natural Areas Program, Department of Conservation, Augusta, ME.

  • Harrison, J. W. 2011. The natural communities of Maryland: 2011 working list of ecological community groups and community types. Unpublished report. Maryland Department of Natural Resources, Wildlife and Heritage Service, Natural Heritage Program, Annapolis. 33 pp.

  • Harrison, J. W., and P. Stango, III. 2003. Shrubland tidal wetland communities of Maryland's Eastern Shore: Identification, assessment and monitoring. Maryland Natural Heritage Program, Maryland Department of Natural Resources, Annapolis. 118 pp.

  • Harrison, J. W., compiler. 2004. Classification of vegetation communities of Maryland: First iteration. A subset of the International Classification of Ecological Communities: Terrestrial Vegetation of the United States, NatureServe. Maryland Natural Heritage Program, Maryland Department of Natural Resources, Annapolis. 243 pp.

  • Hart T. [1990]. Hudson River significant tidal habitats: A guide to the functions, values and protection of the river's natural resources. New York State Department of State, Division of Coastal Resources and waterfront revitalization Albany, NY. 184 pp.

  • McCoy, K. M., and G. P. Fleming. 2000. Ecological communities of U.S. Army Garrison, Fort Belvoir, Fort Belvoir, Virginia. Unpublished report submitted to the U.S. Army. Natural Heritage Technical Report 00-08. Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, Division of Natural Heritage, Richmond. 156 pp. plus appendices.

  • Metzler, K., and J. Barrett. 2006. The vegetation of Connecticut: A preliminary classification. State Geological and Natural History Survey, Report of Investigations No. 12. Connecticut Natural Diversity Database, Hartford, CT.

  • Rawinski, T. 1984a. Natural community description abstract - southern New England calcareous seepage swamp. Unpublished report. The Nature Conservancy, Boston, MA. 6 pp.

  • Reschke, C. 1990. Ecological communities of New York State. New York Natural Heritage Program, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, Latham, NY. 96 pp.

  • Sneddon, L. A., Zaremba, R. E., and M. Adams. 2010. Vegetation classification and mapping at Cape Cod National Seashore, Massachusetts. Natural Resources Technical Report NPS/NER/NRTR--2010/147. National Park Service, Philadelphia, PA. 481 pp. [http://biology.usgs.gov/npsveg/caco/cacorpt.pdf]

  • Sneddon, L., M. Anderson, and K. Metzler. 1996. Community alliances and elements of the Eastern Region. Unpublished report. The Nature Conservancy, Eastern Heritage Task Force, Boston, MA. 235 pp.

  • Swain, P. C., and J. B. Kearsley. 2014. Classification of the natural communities of Massachusetts. Version 2.0. Natural Heritage & Endangered Species Program, Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife. Westborough, MA. [http://www.mass.gov/nhesp/http://www.mass.gov/eea/agencies/dfg/dfw/natural-heritage/natural-communities/classification-of-natural-communities.html]

  • Tiner, R. W., and D. G. Burke. 1995. Wetlands of Maryland. USDI Fish & Wildlife Service, Ecological Services, Region 5, Hadley, MA, and Maryland Department of Natural Resources, Annapolis, MD. Cooperative publication. 193 pp. plus appendices. [http://library.fws.gov/Wetlands/MD_wetlands85.pdf]


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