Vascular plant biodiversity richness and endemo relictness of the karst mountains Prenj–Čvrsnica–Čabulja in Bosnia and Herzegovina (W. Balkan)
Sulejman Redžić, Senka Barudanović, Sabina Trakić & Dejan Kulijer - (40/3,2011)
The complex of karstic mountains Prenj-Čvrsnica and Čabulja in Herzegovina (w. Balkan) is characterized by high level of both geomorphology and biodiversity richness. This has been confirmed by a research of plant communities, their structure and dynamics, which took place throughout several seasons from 2005 to 2008. In the investigated area the vegetation cover, as a reliable indicator for specific karstic circumstances, is being differentiated in a great number of syntaxa (plant communities) that encompass over 2,500 vascular plants. On the surface of about 100,000 ha identified were up to 236 plant associations, 116 alliances and 63 vegetation orders that belong to 34 classes. This amounts 34% of total of vegetation classes at the European level and 100% of so far known vegetation classes in Bosnia and Herzegovina, over 80% of classes at the level of Montenegro and Croatia.There have been identified nearly 450 endemic and relict species, which is why most of the identified communities are endemic and relict ones, not only at the level of association but also at the level of higher syntaxonomic categories, such as alliance and order. The highest diversity level characterizes those communities that make a direct contact with the calcareous geological foundation either in rock crevices or screes on limestone. That high level of floristic and vegetation richness places this area among the most diverse areas both in Europe and whole Mediterranean.That high level of floristic and vegetation richness places this area among the most diverse areas both in Europe and whole Mediterranean. Such pattern of vegetation (syntaxonomy) and floristic diversity confirms the unique role of dinaric-herzegovina karst as a complex of unrepeatable ecological factors on global scale.