Acta Univ. Agric. Silvic. Mendelianae Brun. 2015, 63, 1201-1209
Published online 2015-09-02

Species Diversity and Botanical Composition of Permanent Grassland as a Response to Different Grazing Management Practices

Marie Štýbnarová1, Josef Hakl2, Pavlína Mičová1, Hana Karabcová1, Oldřich Látal1, Karel Fiala1, Jan Pozdíšek1

1Agrovýzkum Rapotín Ltd., Výzkumníků 267, 788 13, Vikýřovice, Czech Republic
2Faculty of Agrobiology, Food and Natural Resources, Czech University of Life Sciences, Kamýcká 129, 165 00 Praha 6-Suchdol, Czech Republic

The effects of different levels of grazing utilization (two, three and four grazing cycles per year) and mineral fertilization (nil-fertilization; N100P30K60) on the botanical composition of permanent grasslands were studied in the locality of Rapotín (Czech Republic, 332 m a.s.l.) from 2003–2010. The vegetation of the experimental pasture was classified as Cynosurion. It was found that moderate treatment (three grazing cycles per year) without mineral fertilization showed the highest value of diversity index (DI = 6.08), and maximum dominance of legumes (Dmax = 9.1%), particularly Trifolium repens. The highest dominance of grasses (Dmax = 77.7%), mainly Dactylis glomerata and Elytrigia repens, was achieved with the fertilized treatment utilized in two grazing cycles per year. Based on RDA results, tested management treatments explained 26% of species composition variability, where effect of number of grazing cycles per year was five-times higher than effect of fertilization. We recommend grassland utilization in three grazing cycles per year as the most suitable way from the objective of both species diversity and botanical composition of pastures in similar site conditions. Pasture fertilization should be more controlled by careful consideration of individual pasture goals, actual nutrient status of the soil and possible environmental risks.


This paper was supported by the institutional support for the long-term conceptual development of the research organisation, Ministry of Agriculture Decision No. RO1214 from 27 February 2014. The completion of the paper was supported by the ‘S’ grant of MSMT CR.


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