Savannah River Ecology Laboratory
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Sandhills Site


 

This relatively undisturbed 66.2 acre (26.8 ha) Set-Aside is one of the original ten SREL habitat reserves which presently is a forest dominated by turkey oak (Quercus laevis) and longleaf pine (Pinus palustris). This mixed species sandhills habitat is situated on infertile, poor-to-marginally productive soils, a habitat type that once was common to the Aiken Plateau as well as the SRS. However, forest type conversion to longleaf pine plantations has reduced this community type to isolated patches within the SRS landscape. SREL selected this Area in 1968 to represent the xeric conditions typical of sandhills habitats, which are remnants of ancient beach dunes. One of three sandhills communities in the Set-Aside Program, this Area and the Scrub Oak Natural Area (Area #29) serve as control replicates to the Sandhills Fire Site (Area #26), where fire ecology studies are conducted on sandhills communities.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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