Botanical criteria of Baharkish Rangeland in Quchan, Khorasan Razavi Province, Iran
Rangelands are natural ecosystems containing a range of resources of genetic diversity and numerous plant species and its evaluation has always been essential. However, biodiversity is one of the most important components of habitat assessment and the identification and introduction of the flora of an area is one of the significant operations that can be used in order to optimize the utilization of the available natural resources. Baharkish rangeland is located at a distance of about 60 km south of the city of Quchan. The rangeland’s average elevation is about 2069 m above sea level, with its lowest at 1740 m and highest at 2440 m. Baharkish rangland in over a ten year period had the average annual rainfall of 337 mm and 998.2 mm evaporation as well as average annual temperature of 9.4°C, respectivelly. The results of the research conducted in the spring of 2014, showed that the total study area includes 77 species from 22 families with Poaceae, Asteraceae, Lamiaceae, Fabaceae, Apiaceae and Brassicaceae being the dominant families with 18%, 13%, 12%, 9%, 8% and 6% respectively. Classification of life form according to Raunkiaer method showed the dominance of the hemicryptophytes with the greatest abundance 41%, followed by Chamaephytes, Therophytes, Geophytes, Phanerophytes and Cryptophyte with 25%, 23%, 4%, 4% and 3% of species were the dominant life forms of the area. In terms of geographical distribution, the Irano-Turanian plant species with 64% obtained the maximum value.
Keywords: Flora, Geographical distribution, Life form, Raunkiaer