International Journal on Advanced Science, Engineering and Information Technology, Vol. 5 (2015) No. 6, pages: 449-456, DOI:10.18517/ijaseit.5.6.589

Effect of Slope Position on Soil Properties and Types Along an Elevation Gradient of Arasbaran Forest, Iran

Hossein Rezaei, Ali Asghar Jafarzadeh, Ahmad Alijanpour, Farzin Shahbazi, Khalil Valizadeh Kamran

Abstract

Sustainable development by forest managing need to identify forest ecosystem elements. Forest soil is the most important element of forest ecosystem that has key roles in forest managing. Therefore, studying of soil properties and evolution under different environmental conditions is necessary for sustainable management of forest ecosystems. Spatial variation of soil properties is significantly influenced by some environmental factors that slope position is one of them. The aim of this study was evaluating effects of slope position on forest soil change which was carried out in Arasbaran forest, North-West of Iran. Nine soil profiles were dug, described and sampled in three different parts of an altitudinal transect with same environmental conditions and different slope positions. Then soil samples were analysed physicaly and chemicaly and so classified based on Soil Taxonomy 2014. Also according to obtained results One-way analysis of variance was used to test relations of soil properties and slope positions. This results revealed significant effect of slope positions on thickness of the soil profile and solum, clay, organic carbon and total nitrogen percentages and cation exchange capacity at 5% level of confidence which lead to change of type, depth and sequence of soil horizons along altitudinal transect. Finally, it has found that slope position not only has important role in soil properties changes and soil evolution but also it can't be refused the various role and influence of same forest stand in different slope positions. Therefore various soils such as Inceptisols, Alfisols and Molisols were observed under different slope positions. Then it can be achieved that, because of special forest vegetation, soil evolution along altitudinal transect of forest ecosystems are differing from other ecosystems. Thus, for forest soil management program it is necessary to consider both of topography and vegetation effect over the area, even if one of them is constant.

Keywords:

Arasbaran forest; Elevation gradient; Forest soil; Slope position; Soil type

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