Desert steppe

Description (English)

Continental, temperate very dry zonal steppe, occurring in a transition belt between the true steppe region and the semi-desert region of southern Ukraine, the south-east of European Russia and ranging further into Kazakhstan. Dry steppe is dominated by a combination of xerophytic tall and low grasses, e.g. Agropyron and Stipa, and xerophytic semi-shrubs, e.g. Artemisia and Tanacetum. Vegetation cover is relatively low, with most biomass belowground. Typically found on southern black soil (chernozems) and light chestnut soils (kastanozems).

Source: EUNIS habitat classification

Quick facts

EUNIS habitat type code R1C

Vegetation types

Relation to vegetation types (syntaxa)

Not available

Indicator species

Diagnostic species
Constant species
Dominant species
Flowering Plants Tanacetum achilleifolium
Flowering Plants Artemisia lerchiana
Flowering Plants Bassia prostrata
Flowering Plants Agropyron desertorum
Flowering Plants Stipa lessingiana
Flowering Plants Leymus ramosus
Flowering Plants Ferula caspica
Flowering Plants Tulipa biebersteiniana
Flowering Plants Galatella villosa
Flowering Plants Stipa sareptana
Flowering Plants Galatella tatarica
Flowering Plants Artemisia austriaca
Flowering Plants Astragalus macropus
Flowering Plants Astragalus testiculatus
Flowering Plants Limonium sareptanum

Diagnostic species occur concentrated in the habitat in question, but are absent or rare in other habitats. They are good positive indicators of the habitat, but they do not need to occur in every location of the habitat.

Species scientific name English common name Species group
Tanacetum achilleifolium Flowering Plants
Artemisia lerchiana Flowering Plants
Bassia prostrata Flowering Plants
Agropyron desertorum Flowering Plants
Stipa lessingiana Flowering Plants
Leymus ramosus Flowering Plants
Ferula caspica Flowering Plants
Tulipa biebersteiniana Flowering Plants
Galatella villosa Flowering Plants
Stipa sareptana Flowering Plants
Galatella tatarica Flowering Plants
Artemisia austriaca Flowering Plants
Astragalus macropus Flowering Plants
Astragalus testiculatus Flowering Plants
Limonium sareptanum Flowering Plants
Flowering Plants Poa bulbosa
Flowering Plants Artemisia lerchiana
Flowering Plants Bassia prostrata
Flowering Plants Festuca valesiaca
Flowering Plants Tanacetum achilleifolium
Flowering Plants Artemisia austriaca
Flowering Plants Stipa lessingiana
Flowering Plants Agropyron desertorum
Flowering Plants Alyssum turkestanicum
Flowering Plants Bromus squarrosus
Flowering Plants Galatella villosa
Flowering Plants Koeleria pyramidata
Flowering Plants Veronica verna
Flowering Plants Leymus ramosus
Flowering Plants Ferula caspica
Flowering Plants Tulipa biebersteiniana
Flowering Plants Stipa capillata
Conifers Ephedra distachya
Flowering Plants Carex stenophylla
Flowering Plants Stipa sareptana

Constant species occur frequently in the habitat, but they may include generalist species that are also frequent in other habitats.

Species scientific name English common name Species group
Poa bulbosa Flowering Plants
Artemisia lerchiana Flowering Plants
Bassia prostrata Flowering Plants
Festuca valesiaca Flowering Plants
Tanacetum achilleifolium Flowering Plants
Artemisia austriaca Flowering Plants
Stipa lessingiana Flowering Plants
Agropyron desertorum Flowering Plants
Alyssum turkestanicum Flowering Plants
Bromus squarrosus Flowering Plants
Galatella villosa Flowering Plants
Koeleria pyramidata Flowering Plants
Veronica verna Flowering Plants
Leymus ramosus Flowering Plants
Ferula caspica Flowering Plants
Tulipa biebersteiniana Flowering Plants
Stipa capillata Flowering Plants
Ephedra distachya Conifers
Carex stenophylla Flowering Plants
Stipa sareptana Flowering Plants
Flowering Plants Poa bulbosa
Flowering Plants Stipa lessingiana
Flowering Plants Artemisia lerchiana

Dominant species are those that often reach high cover in the habitat, thus determining the habitat physiognomy.

Species scientific name English common name Species group
Poa bulbosa Flowering Plants
Stipa lessingiana Flowering Plants
Artemisia lerchiana Flowering Plants

Other classifications

Not available For relation to plant communities (syntaxa), see Vegetation types

History

Not available
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