Transformation of Cover-Abundance Values in Phytosociology and its Effects on Community Similarity

  • E. van der Maarel
Part of the Advances in vegetation science I book series (AIVS, volume 1)


The numerical treatment of phytosociological data is often based on estimates of cover and/or abundance according to the Braun-Blanquet and Domin scales. Since Schwickerath (1931, 1938, 1940) and Tüxen & Ellenberg (1937) published their transformations there has been discussion on the way the scale values should be used in calculations Qualitative approaches, i.e. based on presence and absence have also been favoured (e.g. Williams & Lambert 1959, van der Maarel 1966) Dagnelie (I960) proposed a pseudoqualitative basis for various calculations by means of a ‘coupure’. A coupure includes the deletion of lower values, usually according to a fixed criterion, e.g. the number of occurrences in a phytosociological table to be remained should be as close as possible to 50%. Dagnelie’s approach remained largely unknown and apparently it has never been tested.


Arrhenatheretum Classification Combined estimation Cover-abundance scale Ordination Phytosociology Salt marsh Similarity Transformation 


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Copyright information

© Dr. W. Junk bv Publishers, The Hague 1980

Authors and Affiliations

  • E. van der Maarel
    • 1
  1. 1.Division of GeobotanyED NijmegenThe Netherlands

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