Geoekologiya, 2019, Vol. 3, P. 63-74


© 2019 K. S. Ganzei¹·*, A. G. Kiselyova¹·**, N. F. Pshenichnikova¹·***, I. M. Rodnikova¹·****
1Pacific Geographical Institute, Far East branch, Russian Academy of Sciences,
ul. Radio, 7, Vladivostok, 690041 Russia
*E-mail: geo2008@mail.ru
**E-mail: alena_kiseleva@mail.ru
***E-mail: n.f.p@mail.ru

The study of Shkota Island (Peter the Great Bay, the Sea of Japan) allows us to assess the modern geosystem condition. High-closed broad-leaved forests are found mainly on the northern and western slopes, whereas scattered and scrub broad-leaved forests, bush, semi-bush and grass communities are found in the south and east. The soil-vegetation cover shows the technogenic impact evidence like on other islands previously belonging to the military department. The landscape structure is composed of 16 morphological units. The total territory is a mountain landscape class, with about 82% of the area belonging to a low-mountain landscape subclass, and 12.35%, to a coastal subclass. Beach accumulative landscape developed on sandy-pebble coastal sediments without soil-vegetation cover is located in the north. Uncontrolled recreational activity has become recently the major factor of anthropogenic transformation of natural complexes. High number of visitors and campsite activity increase the fire danger. Ground fires disturb natural ecosystem functioning. The vegetation, lichens and soils bear the evidence of fire impact. Intense mechanical impact on the soil-vegetation cover occurs in the campsite areas. Because of low depth and high skeletal soil, the bulk of island land is prone to erosion. Trampling leads to active sheet soil erosion and destruction of grass-bush layers. The total content of heavy metals in accumulative-humus layers makes up a small proportion of the approximate permissible concentration. Recreational activity, in particular, burning of solid waste explains high concentration of heavy metals in the west. Copper concentration increases by an order of magnitude there in comparison with ones from the other island parts. The copper concentration comes close to the approximate permissible concentration or may outnumber it, considering an analytical error. Zinc concentration outnumbers the approximate permissible concentration without including analytical error. Intense anthropogenic impact disturbs the spatial landscape structure and changes material-energy flows resulting in decreasing landscape diversity. Though Shkota Island geosystems have experienced high anthropogenic influence since the beginning of the XXth century, today we observe reliable restoration of destroyed ecosystems. These areas are being actively covered with grass-bush communities dominating by Lespedeza bicolor and Artemisia gmelini, which boosts humification and humus accumulation. Saplings of broad-leaved trees spring there. But periodic ground fires make stable forest restoration difficult.

Keywords: islands, geosystems, vegetation, lichens, burozem, fires, anthropogenic pressure, heavy metals, Primorsky Krai, the Sea of Japan.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.31857/S0869-78092019363-74


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