Red List habitat classification > RLE - Grasslands > RLE3.2b Mediterranean short moist grassland of mountains

Mediterranean short moist grassland of mountains

Quick facts

Red List habitat type code RLE3.2b
Threat status
Europe Least Concern
EU Least Concern
Relation to
Source European Red List habitat factsheet
European Red List of habitats reports
European Red List of habitats (Excel table)

Summary

High mountain evergreen pastures of the western Mediterranean dominated by tussocky grasses such as Nardus stricta and Festuca microphylla (= Festuca nigrescens subsp. microphylla), located in moist places such as depressions experiencing long-lasting snow cover and even a certain water stagnation. The vegetation cover is near to closed with the grasses forming a continuous sward.  As they remain green and productive during summer, those meadows constitute an important resource for the transhumant flocks of sheep and cows which spend the summer at high altitudes.  In the Sierra Nevada these grasslands are called borreguiles, derived from borrego, sheep, while in the rest of the areas receive the name of cervunales. This name is derived from the pasto cervuno or cebruno, the Spanish name of Nardus stricta, as it was the main grass which was the pasture of an extint Iberian endemic equidae, called Zebro (Equus hydruntinus).

The grasslands occur in the central and southern Iberian siliceous mountains of the Cordillera Central, Sierra Nevada and northern Iberian System, extending to the neighboring North African mountains of the Rif and Atlas.  They also occur in the high mountains of Corsica on slightly drier sites than the D2.2b Relict mires of Medi-terranean mountains dominated by Carex intricata.

Indicators of good quality:

  • Closed carpet-like sward without open soil patches due to intensive grazing or trampling

  • Dominance of grasses, such as Nardus or Festuca, combined with an even representation of the other herbaceous species

  • Absence of nitrophilous species indicative of very heavy grazing pressure

Characteristic species
For full habitat description, please download the habitat factsheet.

Threat status

Synthesis of Red List assessment

What little detailed information is available suggests that this habitat is stable in both quantity and quality.
EU
Red List Category Red List Criteria
Least Concern -
Europe
Red List Category Red List Criteria
Least Concern -

Confidence in the assessment

low
Red List of habitat categories and criteria descriptions

Pressures and threats

  • Agriculture
    • Grazing
    • Abandonment of pastoral systems, lack of grazing
  • Human intrusions and disturbances
    • Outdoor sports and leisure activities, recreational activities
    • Skiing, off-piste
  • Climate change
    • Droughts and less precipitations

Habitat restoration potential

Restoration depends greatly on the feasibility of restoring the distinctive hydrological conditions at high altitude in the face of a changing climate.

Trends in extent

Average current trend in quantity

Stable Stable
EU28 EU28+

Trends in quality

Average current trend in quality

Stable Stable
EU28 EU28+

Conservation and management needs

Continuation of traditional grazing is the most important conservation activity.

List of conservation and management needs

  • Measures related to agriculture and open habitats
    • Maintaining grasslands and other open habitats
  • Measures related to spatial planning
    • Establish protected areas/sites

Distribution

For each habitat a distribution map was produced from a wide variety of sources indicating known and potential occurrences of the habitat in 10x10 km grids within Europe. Occurrences in grid cells were given in two classes: actual distribution from relatively reliable sources (surveys, expert knowledge), and potential distribution based on models or less reliable indicators. Please download the fact sheet to see the map.

Geographic occurrence and trends

EU28 Present or presence uncertain Current area of habitat (Km2) Recent trend in quantity (last 50 years) Recent trend in quality (last 50 years)
Portugal mainland Present 23 Unknown Increasing
Spain mainland Present 526 Stable Stable
Corsica Present unknown Unknown Unknown
EU28 + Present or presence uncertain Current area of habitat (Km2) Recent trend in quantity (last 50 years) Recent trend in quality (last 50 years)

Extent of Occurrence, Area of Occupancy and habitat area

Extent of Occurrence (EOO) (Km2) Area of Occupancy (AOO) Current estimated Total Area Comment
EU28 596700 409 549 Over 95% of this habitat is in Spain and we have no data from Corsica.
EU28+ 409 unknown
AOO = the area occupied by a habitat measured in number of 10x10 km grid cells.
EOO = the area (km2) of the envelope around all occurrences of a habitat (calculated by a minimum convex polygon).

Characteristic species

The full list of characteristic species and genus are available above from the Summary. The species available in the EUNIS database are shown here.
Ferns Botrychium matricariifolium
Ferns Botrychium simplex
Ferns Ophioglossum azoricum
Ferns Ophioglossum vulgatum
Flowering Plants Agrostis nevadensis
Flowering Plants Allium schoenoprasum
Flowering Plants Anthoxanthum odoratum
Flowering Plants Armeria splendens
Flowering Plants Bellium bellidioides
Flowering Plants Campanula herminii
Flowering Plants Carex caryophyllea
Flowering Plants Carex flava
Flowering Plants Carex furva
Flowering Plants Carex intricata
Flowering Plants Carex ovalis
Flowering Plants Carex pallescens
Flowering Plants Cirsium gregarium
Flowering Plants Cynosurus cristatus
Flowering Plants Danthonia decumbens
Flowering Plants Dianthus langeanus
Flowering Plants Erodium carvifolium
Flowering Plants Festuca henriquesii
Flowering Plants Festuca iberica
Flowering Plants Festuca rothmaleri
Flowering Plants Galium saxatile
Flowering Plants Gentiana boryi
Flowering Plants Gentiana verna
Flowering Plants Juncus squarrosus
Flowering Plants Lotus glacialis
Flowering Plants Lotus glareosus
Flowering Plants Luzula hispanica
Flowering Plants Meum athamanticum
Flowering Plants Nardus stricta
Flowering Plants Plantago nivalis
Flowering Plants Plantago radicata
Flowering Plants Plantago subulata
Flowering Plants Poa supina
Flowering Plants Polygala serpyllifolia
Flowering Plants Potentilla erecta
Flowering Plants Potentilla reuteri
Flowering Plants Ranunculus abnormis
Flowering Plants Ranunculus acetosellifolius
Flowering Plants Sagina nevadensis
Flowering Plants Sagina pilifera
Flowering Plants Sedum melanantherum
Flowering Plants Trifolium nevadense
Species scientific name English common name Species group
Botrychium matricariifolium Ferns
Botrychium simplex Ferns
Ophioglossum azoricum Ferns
Ophioglossum vulgatum Ferns
Agrostis nevadensis Flowering Plants
Allium schoenoprasum Flowering Plants
Anthoxanthum odoratum Flowering Plants
Armeria splendens Flowering Plants
Bellium bellidioides Flowering Plants
Campanula herminii Flowering Plants
Carex caryophyllea Flowering Plants
Carex flava Flowering Plants
Carex furva Flowering Plants
Carex intricata Flowering Plants
Carex ovalis Flowering Plants
Carex pallescens Flowering Plants
Cirsium gregarium Flowering Plants
Cynosurus cristatus Flowering Plants
Danthonia decumbens Flowering Plants
Dianthus langeanus Flowering Plants
Erodium carvifolium Flowering Plants
Festuca henriquesii Flowering Plants
Festuca iberica Flowering Plants
Festuca rothmaleri Flowering Plants
Galium saxatile Flowering Plants
Gentiana boryi Flowering Plants
Gentiana verna Flowering Plants
Juncus squarrosus Flowering Plants
Lotus glacialis Flowering Plants
Lotus glareosus Flowering Plants
Luzula hispanica Flowering Plants
Meum athamanticum Flowering Plants
Nardus stricta Flowering Plants
Plantago nivalis Flowering Plants
Plantago radicata Flowering Plants
Plantago subulata Flowering Plants
Poa supina Flowering Plants
Polygala serpyllifolia Flowering Plants
Potentilla erecta Flowering Plants
Potentilla reuteri Flowering Plants
Ranunculus abnormis Flowering Plants
Ranunculus acetosellifolius Flowering Plants
Sagina nevadensis Flowering Plants
Sagina pilifera Flowering Plants
Sedum melanantherum Flowering Plants
Trifolium nevadense Flowering Plants

Vegetation types

Relation to vegetation types (syntaxa)

Not available

Other classifications

This habitat may be equivalent to, or broather than, or narrower than the habitats or ecosystems in the following typologies.
Classification Code Habitat type name Relationship type
EUNIS Habitat Classification 200711 E3.2 Mediterranean short humid grassland narrower
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