Rangeland Ecology & Management

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Line Sampling to Determine Cover

Another common approach to determine cover involves extending a line (usually a tape) across the site and recording the proportion intercepting plant material. In theory, line methods are a specialized form of point sampling to determine cover, where an infinitely large number of points are systematically arranged in a consecutive sequence. Such an order allows points to be located in a more practical manner, and posts can be easily placed at either end to permanently locate the line-transect. In general, greater precision is attained by sampling shorter lines at more locations, provided that each is a length that includes the scale of the spatial pattern within the vegetation.

References and Further Reading

Bonham, C.D. 1989. Measurements for terrestrial vegetation. John Wiley Sons, New York, NY. pp 21-24, 117-123.

Hasel, A.A. 1941. Estimation of vegetation-type areas by linear measurements. Journal of Forestry 39:34-40.