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., 34-35 (Russian), 134-135 (English).


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

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

In the steppes ecosystems there are knots thickenings of the biomass - like oasises (Mordkovich, 1982; Stebayev a.o., 1968). They form "nucleus". In these "tricks of the common biochemical activity of all the functional ecosystem's parts" (Mordkovich, 1982) to our point of view an important meaning have marmots and an availability of moisture. To our mind, knots thickenings (nucleus) make marmots and plants. The knots thickenings of the biomass, which are made only by plants, are poorer, then of those, which are made by marmots. The latters are richer by the kind of variety and by the attraction strength to themselves by different types of animals and plants. The biofield of the marmot's colony may be defined by the abundance of the type variety abound it.

"Marmotbiogeocenoszes" attract to themselves different types of animals and plants (Dimitriev, Dimitriev, 1996). The biochemical circulation in them is quickened, which is favourable for the evolution of the ecosystem.
Present steppes without animals, haymakings and pastures lose type variety, primary appearance. It is seen in the practice of preservation of the steppes reserves. The main reason of this phenomenon is the absence of the natural herds, marmots and some others animals in present steppes, the influence of them on the biogeocenoz of the steppe is available. The first of them are destroyed by people and for their restoration at present there are numbers of the limitations (roads, pipelines, fields,motorized poaching and so on), though they are partially chenged by the home hooves; but marmots remained and in the last decades their number is restored and their influence on the biogeocenozes of the steppes is essentially increasing.

The availability of marmots and bare places which are made by the throwing out of the ground from the holes make constant presence in the steppes free from the vegetation and competitioned struggle microplots. These are microecotons. They may be zoned like other ecotons into 3 zones: A, B, C (Guricheva, Dmitriev, 1977; Dimitriev, 1996). The availability of the microecotons increases the stability of the landscapes to the environment conditions and anthropogenny influence.

Marmots, making breaches of the ground cover in the steppes, turfs and vegetation itself owing to their digging activity, carry constantly into biogeocenoz the type variety and flora satiation. By this they diminish the type variety competition on the definite territory and make conditions for inculcation of the certain pioneer plants groups, which belong to explere nts. In the steppes constantly exist nets of microterritories with more earlier stages of the vegetation. Plants, which the first occupy this microterritory seem to avoid the competition press (Bigon and others, 1989). It is all the same for them how and by whon are made these free from the competition struggle territories - by a man, a plough, a bulldozer, a spring flood, a mudflow, autoor railway means of transport, marmots and so on.

In the marmots colonies microterritories, where is an absence of the vegetation, is a great number. Marmots constantly clean and repair holes and dig new ones. Owing to this a type structure of the having come plants remains rather long, which provides a high type saturation of the steppes and stepped territories by the plants'groups with different life strategies of the development. This in its turn provides an increase of the forages qualities vegetation units, which is useful for marmots as well.

Marmots form rather stable and available for plants and animals ceonoz. The kernel of this ecosystem are considered to be marmots. Owing to their activity remains the stability of the cenoz development during decades, maybe even centuries. We have looked after the dynamics of the marmots' number in the Batyrevsky relict colony beginning from the thirties of our century and is made the comparison of the flora plants structure of this colony with the information during sixty years' period. We can state, that the disappearance of the marmots' colonies in other places gave the degeneration of the stepped teritories, the transformation them into the meadows and pastures with other types of plants and animals.

The disappearence "attracting to itself the other types of plants and animals" of the kernels of the marmot's biogeocenoz influences on the violation for stable set of the flora and fauna tupes and upon the whole for further development of the stepped biogeocenoz. The disappearance of such kernels promotes the degradation of the steppe and the reestablishment - the animation of the biota and the satiation of the biogeocenoz by the type variety.

Ruined territories of steppe after mechanical and fitorecultivated process need in zoorecultivation. For this purpose can be used marmots.

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