2022 Annual report
This Report summarizes the activities of the European Vegetation Survey (EVS) Working Group from June 2021 to June 2022.
The 29th EVS conference, initially scheduled for May 2020 and postponed to May 2021, had to be cancelled due to the restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Therefore, it was held online on 6–7 September 2021. The conference was prepared by the EVS Steering Committee (Fabio Attorre, Idoia Biurrun, Milan Chytrý, Anna Kuzemko and Joop Schaminée) and the EVS Membership Administrator Emiliano Agrillo. The main theme of the conference was “Revegetation Europe – Contributions of the EVS to the UN decade on Ecosystem Restoration”. The conference was attended by at least 155 participants from 31 countries. The most represented countries were Italy, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Russia, Spain, Ukraine, Germany, Netherlands, Poland, Latvia, Bulgaria and Slovenia. During two days, the participants gave 36 regular presentations (12 minutes) and 30 lightning talks (3 minutes). The electronic Book of Abstracts was published on https://doi.org/…nodo.5171736. The 30th EVS conference was the first in-person meeting of the European Vegetation Survey since September 2019. It was held in Bratislava, Slovakia, on 9–13 May 2022, and hosted by colleagues from the Plant Science and Biodiversity Center of the Slovak Academy of Sciences, namely Jozef Šibík, Mária Šibíková, Michaela Michálková, Iveta Škodová, Richard Hrivnák, Monika Janišová, Katarína Hegedüšová Vantarová, Jana Májeková, Milan Valachovič, Ivan Jarolímek, Denisa Slabejová, Michal Slezák, Lucia Čahojová and Simona Klačanová. The main theme of the conference was “Plant communities in changing environment”. There were 123 participants from 22 countries. The most represented countries were Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Poland, Italy, Hungary, Ukraine and France. Ten people from 5 countries, namely Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Poland, Serbia and Ukraine received travel grants from the IAVS to attend the EVS conference. During three days, participants presented 3 keynote talks (Anna Kuzemko, Milan Chytrý and Monika Janišová), 44 regular talks and 49 posters. Four field excursions were offered on 13 May, visiting riparian vegetation along the Danube River (led by Mária Šibíková and Ivan Jarolímek), steppes and thermophilous forests of the south-western part of the Little Carpathians at the confluence of the Morava and Danube Rivers (led by Katarína Hegedüšová Vantarová, Iveta Škodová and Iva Hodálová), calcareous dry grasslands in the Tematín Hills (led by Monika Janišová and Daniela Dúbravková) and sandy habitats in the Záhorie Lowland (led by Milan Valachovič and Pavol Mereďa).
The electronic ballot of the Steering Committee for 2020–2024 was approved by the EVS Business Meeting during the 29th EVS conference on 6 September 2021. The Steering Committee included Fabio Attorre (IT, Conference Coordinator), Idoia Biurrun (ES), Milan Chytrý (CZ, Secretary), Anna Kuzemko (UA) and Joop Schaminée (NL). Emiliano Agrillo (IT) served as ex officio Membership Administrator but decided to step down in April 2022 after many years in that role. Idoia Biurrun took over the role of Membership Administrator.
(3) European Vegetation Archive (EVA)
The European Vegetation Archive was managed by the EVA Coordinating Board, which included Idoia Biurrun (ES), Milan Chytrý (CZ), Stephan Hennekens (NL), Florian Jansen (DE), Borja Jiménez-Alfaro (ES), Ilona Knollová (CZ) and Anna Kuzemko (UA). As of April 2022, EVA included 105 databases with 1,915,226 vegetation plots. Of these plots, 88% were georeferenced, and 60% were assigned to phytosociological syntaxa; 75% of plots were accessible under the semi-restricted regime, 13% under the restricted regime and 12% were open access. In total, EVA data were made available for 148 research projects (including 40 new projects in the last year; http://euroveg.org/…eva-projects). Data from EVA have been used in 14 new journal articles published in the last year and 60 articles since the database was launched in 2014. New articles were published, among others, in leading journals, including Nature Communications, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA, Global Change Biology, Global Ecology and Biogeography, New Phytologist, Journal of Applied Ecology, Ecography, Journal of Biogeography and Applied Vegetation Science. An updated list of all publications can be found at http://euroveg.org/…publications. Further details are available in the EVA Annual Report at http://euroveg.org/…ORT_2022.pdf. New achievement of EVA in the past year was the establishment of ReSurveyEurope, an initiative to collect and analyze data from resurveyed vegetation plots. This initiative was launched by Franz Essl (AT), Milan Chytrý (CZ) and Helge Bruelheide (DE) and coordinated with the EVA Coordinating Board. The ReSurveyEurope database is managed by Ilona Knollová and Stephan Hennekens as part of EVA. So far, almost 40 thousand plots resurveyed at least once have been integrated into ReSurveyEurope.
(4) Online database of European vegetation and habitats
Vegetation Science Group at Masaryk University, Brno, in collaboration with experts from the European Vegetation Survey, launched the new online database FloraVeg.EU in early May 2022. This database contains the standard phytosociological classification of European vegetation (EuroVegChecklist with modifications approved by the European Vegetation Classification Committee), EUNIS classification of European habitats and various data on species of European vascular flora.
(5) Maintenance of the standard European vegetation classification
Since the last Report, two proposals for modification of the EuroVegChecklist have been submitted to the European Vegetation Classification Committee (EVCC), one concerning the class Quercetea ilicis, and the other the class Oxycocco-Sphagnetea. Both proposals are currently under evaluation by expert groups. Moreover, a list of minor corrections such as typos in syntaxon or author names or wrong years in author citations was prepared and approved by the EVCC. These minor corrections have already been published on the new website FloraVeg.EU.
(6) Supporting the European Environment Agency in the development and management of the European habitat typology
An EVS team from Wageningen Environmental Research and Masaryk University (Brno) continued the development of the EUNIS Habitat Classification by participating in discussions on the freshwater habitat classification and revising the classification of some wetland habitats and aquatic plant communities.
Milan Chytrý, Fabio Attorre, Idoia Biurrun, Anna Kuzemko and Joop Schaminée (EVS Steering Committee), with contributions from Wolfgang Willner and Jozef Šibík