Scientific name Eriophorum angustifolium – Campylopus introflexus bog
Common name Common Cottongrass – Heath Star-moss bog
Community code BG1D

 

BG1D: Eriophorum angustifolium – Campylopus introflexus bog     BG1D: Eriophorum angustifolium – Campylopus introflexus bog     BG1D map: Eriophorum angustifolium – Campylopus introflexus bog

Download full pdf synopsis: BG1D

 

Vegetation

Eriophorum angustifolium is the only constant species in this community, sometimes growing in mono-specific swards. There is frequently some patchy cover of Calluna vulgaris and occasionally some scrappy growth of Molinia caerulea, Narthecium ossifragum and Trichophorum cespitosum/germanicum. Overall cover of plants is typically low, with areas of bare or algal-covered peat common. On wetter peats Juncus bulbosus may occur, while on drier sections, the non-native moss Campylopus introflexus may colonise. Infrequently, Juncus effusus and Polytrichum commune may be abundant.

 

Ecology

This is mainly a community of degraded peatlands which have been subjected to drainage, peat extraction, erosion, overgrazing, trampling or burning. It can occur in the uplands or lowlands. In upland blanket bog, this vegetation is characteristic of eroding blanket bog where it colonizes and, at least temporarily, stabilizes slumped areas of soft peat amongst the peat haggs. In lowland bog, it occurs extensively in areas of industrial peat extraction both on the damaged peat surface and in drains. Soils are wet, ombrogenous, acidic peats which can be shallow or deep.

 

Sub-communities

No sub-communities have been described for this community.

 

Similar communities

This is a distinctive community that is unlikely to generate too much confusion. The BG1C Schoenus nigricans – Eriophorum angustifolium bog community can also represent degraded peat vegetation, but both cover and diversity of species are much greater there as the disturbance is less pronounced.

 

Conservation value

This is a very species-poor degraded peatland community. Most examples come from areas of blanket bog and qualify as the non-priority form of 7130 Blanket bog (active)*. Potentially, this vegetation could also be found in areas ascribable to 7120 Degraded raised bogs.

 

Management

In the lowlands, this vegetation is typically a result of turf-cutting, either by machine or by hand. In the uplands, bogs where this vegetation occurs are usually used for extensive sheep grazing; the erosion associated with this community may be linked to overgrazing. This type of degradation can also be encountered along trampled hiking routes. Other threats include afforestation and burning.