Holarctic Marmots as a factor of Biodiversity.
Rumiantsev V.Yu;, Nikol'skii A.A. & Brandler O.V. eds.,
Abstracts, 3d Conference on Marmots (Cheboksary, Russia, 25-30 August 1997),
Moscow ABF 1997, 216p.


N.A. Barmin*, A.V. Dimitriev**, Z.N. Plechova ***

*The Ogaryov' State University of Mordovia, Sarsnsk
**The State nature reserve "Prisursky", Cheboksary
***Chuvash Republic Education Institute, Cheboksary, Russia

Small steppe plots, boarding on the forest and the steppe are of the great interest for the science and practice. On most of them there are concentrated rare plants and animals, which are placed in the different lists of the rare and disappearing plants and animals. However, these steppe plots are not always stable in time. Certainly, during recent years not a small role plays the anthropogeny influence of a man. But often the reason of disappearing or the degradation of such plots must be looked for in the innertyped and betweentyped relations of the plants and animals in aut- and sinecology.

The long durated practice of the steppe nature reserve preservation of the ExUSSR showed, that the absolute reserved steppe plots lead to their degradation. A haymaking,a pasture promotes the preservation of the steppe plots. The importance of constant violations of the steppe intact vegetation cover for supporting the natural resources type variety and its dependence from the loading intensivity is well proved (Pachosky, 1917; Alyochin, 1934). An overloading leads to a degradation of the steppe units, "unloading" - to the meadowing. The maximum of the type variety is observed during the average intensivity of the violated factors, which is typical for the life activity by marmots in the nearest suburbs of the colonies.

The formation of the powerful layer dry litter (rags) in the steppe plants - one of the means for suppressing the competition as it makes difficulties in seed's germitating and suppresses the sprouting of the competitioned types. The feather-grass's corns owing to the known construction of the lower flower scales overcome this lid with success.

During loading or haymaking the violation of the density of the vegetation cover by the hoofs or the rodents (marmots) is diminished or the layer of the litter is damaged and there is a possibility for the plants' line for occupying these free plots.

In the natural surroundings the factor of the taking off (destroying) of the litter's layer can be wild hoofs' herds, the activity of the digging animals or fires. The first are destroyed by a man, but fires in the guarding natural territories are extremely bad, as the seed's bank of the most rare plants is destroyed, the ethnofauna, the soil is ruined, the connections are destroyed and others. That's why in the case of the preservation of the biovariety and the stable development in the contemporary conditions the marmots and their influeence on the steppe ecosystems is going to the front plan.

It is seen, that the press of the animals defined in the considerable measure is the figure of the steppe. That's why, the steppe is, saying figuratively, a biogeoceonos, but not a fitoceonos (Alyochin, 1934).

The marmots' moving in the less stable and the degradated steppe plots can beneficially influence on the dynamics of the stable development of the small steppe ecosystems.

The marmots and steppes, especially in the north boarders of the steppe zones, are necessary to be guarded together, as they prevent the transformation of the steppes into the climacteric units and constantly promote the support of the vegetation units in the elementary stages of the suktsessionny line.

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