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Identifying the Diverse Ecological Characteristics of the Barton Peninsula on King George Island
long-Term Ecological Research on King george Island to Predict Ecosystem Responses to climate change
Soon Gyu Hong email@example.com
The Barton Peninsula of King George Island, where the King Sejong Station is located, is a place composed of various geomorphological features including mountains and canyons, high-altitude steep areas and low-altitude flat areas.
Areas of steep, high-altitude land are generally covered with stones, while flat, low-altitude areas are generally covered in soil.
Snow remain patterns, water flow, soil water contents, sunlight exposure are affected by geomorphological features, which leads to highly diverse environmental conditions despite the small size of the Barton Peninsula.
Each species of mosses and lichens exhibit different preference for light and water, and the terrestrial ecosystems of the Barton Peninsula are composed of diverse species of moss and lichen.
Accurate information for geo-topology is a prerequisite to understand environmental conditions to which each species of moss and lichen are adapted, and to predict the potential results of climate change in the future.
This study obtained images of the entire area of the Barton Peninsula using UAVs, and prepared a topographic map of 10cm resolution. This will be used to develop models for sunlight exposure and water flow. This study also obtained ultra-high resolution images of slopes using helikites, and prepared a vegetation map with 4mm resolution.
Based on the vegetation map and environmental data on temperature, humidity, and PAR, it can be concluded that Sanionia, Psoroma, and Ochrolechia were distributed on flat, low-altitude areas with high water content;Usnea was a predominantspeciesin dry, high-altitude areas;and Chorisdontium, Cladonia, Stereocaulon, and Sphaerophorus prefer intermediate zones.
This study examined the distribution pattern of Cladonia squamosa at genotype level to understand whether environmental factors affect the distribution of a species at the genotype level, and to identify the most important environmental factor in the adaptation of lichen species.
This study found that the distribution of each genotype is dependent on environmental factors, among which water availability was the most important. This implies that micro-environmental factors influence the adaptation of genotypes of lichen species, even in a small geographic area.
Figure 1. Image acquisition by UAV and high-resolution topography of Barton Peninsula(resolution, 10cm).
Figure 2.Image acquisition by helikite and vegetation distribution mapping of a slope(resolution, 4mm).