Weather data
A large number of automatic weather stations has been implemented in the frame of the BIOTA AFRICA project by the Namibian National Botanical Research Institute (NBRI) and the Group "Biodiversity, Evolution and Ecology" (BEE) of the University of Hamburg. The website offers hourly updates of data and graphs of a large number of weather parameters.


BIOTA Maroc - Approach

Crossing the biomes: a transect approach

In the context of BIOTA-Maroc, we assess spatiotemporal vegetation patterns with a multi-scale approach in order to estimate carrying capacity and resilience of these ecosystems and to predict future trends under scenarios of climatic change and increasing anthropogenic pressure.

Along a north-south directed transect of 10 test sites, covering the full range from oromediterranean to Saharan ecosystems, we observe small-scale vegetation patterns on permanent plots of each 100 m2. Permanent plots are divided in 400 raster cells of 0,25 m2 each. Individual based population parameter as establishment, annual increment and die off are acquired for most perennial species. Parameters recorded on the plots comprise further on species composition and density, and functional traits.

Fenceline contrast at testsite Taoujgalt (left) and annual vegetation monitoring at testsite Ameskar (right)

To differentiate between the impacts of land use and climatic variability on vegetation, the experimental design is based on pairs of fenced and unfenced plots. Regular censuses show us temporal vegetation changes based on establishment and die-off events.
Two Biodiversity Observatories at the test sites El Miyit (EMY) and Taoujgalt (TAO) link the methodological approach to the BIOTA-Africa standards with the BIOTA observatory network.

Correlation of these inventories with homologous meteorological data sets from the GLOWA-IMPETUS-Project allows us to explore species-specific responses to climatic events and thus to detect hardly noticeable long term changes. Comparisons of fenced and unfenced plots give us information on the actual grazing pressure and temporal aspects of vegetation recovery under enclosure conditions, which will help to outline probable vegetation trends and to model the consequences of future land use and climate changes.