Lake Aquilla - Habitat Survey Hill County, Texas
ENGINEER RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT CENTER VICKSBURG MS VICKSBURG United States
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This study surveyed and mapped the plant communities at Lake Aquilla, Hill County, Texas. The condition of the communities and their potential for future applications of selected restorative practices were also evaluated. Emphasis was placed on locating potential Texas Blackland prairie remnants, shrublands that may support the federally threatened Black-capped vireo Vireo atricapilla Woodhouse, and oak-juniper woodlands that may support the federally endangered Golden-cheeked Warbler Dendroica chrysoparia P. L. Sclater and Salvin. Data was collected using a combination of plots and transects. All vascular plant species were recorded, as well as their abundance and growth form. Plant community classifications were adapted from those developed by the National Vegetation Classification System for the state of Texas. Two-hundred and twenty-seven species of vascular plants were recorded from 27 sample locations. Remnant patches of Texas Black land prairie degraded by fire suppression and previous land use practices were identified in the survey area. Shrublands suitable for the black-capped vireo, and oak-juniper woodlands suitable for the golden-cheeked warbler were not detected in the survey area. Restorative practices that include management of undesirable woody vegetation and application of pre-scribed fire were recommended for the grasslands, and oak woodlands and forests at Lake Aquilla.