The Natural Communities of Louisiana
By: Louisiana Natural Heritage Program - Louisiana Department of Wildlife & Fisheries
Natural communities are composed of groups of plant and animal species that regularly or often occur in association with each other in certain landscapes or physical environments. Nature is seldom divided into discrete units and is characteristically composed of a continuous mosaic of natural communities. The factors that help to define a particular community (i.e., associated vegetation, soil, substrate, hydrology, topography, climate, fire history) usually exist along gradients, and therefore every occurrence of a natural community will be unique in some way. In developing our classification of the Natural Communities of Louisiana, levels of distinctiveness are defined according to the physical and biotic factors that occur repetitively at various locations.
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