We have evaluated the level of restoration achieved by a technical revegetation action carried out on reconstructed foredunes at the Devesa de la Albufera and compared this level with that achieved by spontaneous succession. Foredunes, 3, 6 and 20 y old since revegetated (1, 3, 6 and 20 y, respectively) were considered as spatially separated stages representing a successional trend in the development of the restored plant community. Lower and similar levels of diversity (richness and H and Pielous indexes) and coverage, respectively, were found on dunes corresponding to the oldest stage of technical revegetation compared with that of the reference site. Diversity and coverage parameters increased during the first 6 y of the technical succession and decreased after 20 y of revegetation. Moreover, that increase was quite obvious as early as 3 y after the onset of revegetation. Results also showed that the Devesa de la Albufera has its own capacity for revegetation. According to the Jaccard and Sorensen indexes, these dunes were more similar to the reference than those from the 20 y old site. Beyond the current functionality of the revegetated sites, it is concluded that the natural and aesthetic values may be restored at the Valencian Devesa de la Albufera. Copyright (C) 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
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