Document Type : Research Paper


1 Ph.D. Graduated in Rangeland Sciences, Gorgan University of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources

2 Assistant Professor, Faculty of Natural Resources

3 PhD student, Gorgan University of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources

4 PhD student, Gorgan University of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources,


Grazing management is one of the basic elements in managing rangeland ecosystems. Proper use of grazing lands in order to achieve optimal efficiency and maintain the sustainability of rangeland ecosystems is the purpose of grazing management. In order to evaluate the response of vegetation to grazing in summer rangelands of Chahar Bagh region of Golestan province, vegetation density, vegetation cover and functional properties were measured at five different grazing sites. Thus, using the statistics method of samples and regarding the size of the dominant plants canopy, 20 plots 1*1 meter by using a systematic- random method was considered in order to do sampling in each site and the density, and vegetation cover  were recorded within each plot. Finally, parameters were analyzed using Duncan test and analysis of variance and the vegetation compositions of sites were compared using cluster analysis and Jaccard's coefficient of similarity. Results showed that the grazing intensity have significant effect on the vegetation. As grazing intensity increased, the density of desirable species decreased and density of undesirable species increased. So, the enclosure site had the highest desirable species density. Moreover, some functional types such as perennials, Hemicryptophytes, Chamephytes, grasses and decreaser plants significantly reduce with increasing grazing intensity. The greatest increase belongs to grasses with density of 9.8 and class I of palatability with density of 22.8 in enclosure site. Between functional groups, grass life form had the greatest increases in enclosure site with the cover of 19.65 percent. According to results of clustering and similarity index, pen surrounding and watering sites had similar vegetation composition. Enclosure and key area also had similar composition. In general, it can be concluded that increase in grazing intensity has caused negative changes in vegetation in study sites and the changes in watering area, village vicinity and pen area clearly observed. So, using of the management methods in order to improve vegetation indices and pushing it toward balance is recommended.