Classification of Natural Communities (Fourth Approximation)

Draft descriptions for the 4th approximation communities are offered for use and feedback. We welcome feedback on the 4th approximation, including on the draft descriptions and the classified communities.

Detailed descriptions are available at two levels of the classification. Subtypes, the finest level, are the units tracked by the Natural Heritage Program, and are generally equivalent to associations in the National Vegetation Classification. Four-digit codes next to the names are the “CEGL codes” (NVC Codes) that identify the most equivalent association. Descriptions are also being written for themes, the coarsest level in the 4th approximation. Themes are broad ecological groupings containing several community types and subtypes. Theme descriptions contain material that is common to all or most of the types and subtypes they contain, to avoid repeating this material in multiple subtype descriptions.

To contribute input, please note the subtype and NVC code. Send all comments to michael.schafale@ncdcr.gov.

Key to 4th Approximation Themes

Dry Longleaf Pine Communities
Title Taxonomic Code NVC Code Last updated
*Dry Longleaf Pine Description 03/23/2018
Pine/Scrub Oak Sandhill (Blackjack Subtype) 471 3595 05/14/2018
Sand Barren (Typic Subtype) 461 3584 03/23/2018
Xeric Sandhill Scrub (Coastal Fringe subtype) 467 3589 05/14/2018
Xeric Sandhill Scrub (Typic Subtype) 465 3586 03/23/2018
Freshwater Tidal Wetlands
Title Taxonomic Code NVC Code Last updated
*Freshwater Tidal Wetlands Description 03/22/2018
Freshwater Marsh Pool 927 4661 03/22/2018
Tidal Freshwater Marsh (Broadleaf Pondlily Subtype) 921 4472 03/22/2018
Tidal Freshwater Marsh (Cattail Subtype) 909 4201 03/22/2018
Tidal Freshwater Marsh (Giant Cordgrass Subtype) 901 4195 03/22/2018
Tidal Freshwater Marsh (Mixed Freshwater Subtype) 917 4314 03/22/2018
Tidal Freshwater Marsh (Narrowleaf Pondlily Subtype) 923 6094 03/22/2018
Tidal Freshwater Marsh (Needlerush Subtype) 905 4660 03/22/2018
Tidal Freshwater Marsh (Oligohaline Low Marsh Subtype) 915 4628 03/22/2018
Tidal Freshwater Marsh (Sawgrass Subtype) 903 4178 03/22/2018
Tidal Freshwater Marsh (Shoreline Lawn Subtype) 919 6352 03/22/2018
Tidal Freshwater Marsh (Shrub Subtype) 925 4656 03/22/2018
Tidal Freshwater Marsh (Southern Wild Rice Subtype) 911 4705 03/22/2018
Tidal Freshwater Marsh (Threesquare Subtype) 907 4189 03/22/2018
Tidal Swamp (Cypress-Gum Subtype) 931 4484 03/22/2018
Mountain Oak Forests
Title Taxonomic Code NVC Code Last updated
*Mountain Oak Forests Key 05/14/2018
Peatland Pocosins
Title Taxonomic Code NVC Code Last updated
*Peatland Pocosins Description and Key 05/14/2018
Bay Forest 759 7044 05/14/2018
High Pocosin (Deciduous Subtype) 743 4458 05/14/2018
High Pocosin (Evergreen Subtype) 741 3846 05/14/2018
Low Pocosin (Gallberry-Fetterbush Subtype) 731 3944 05/14/2018
Low Pocosin (Titi Subtype) 733 3943 05/14/2018
Pocosin Opening (Cranberry Subtype) 739 4165 05/14/2018
Pocosin Opening (Pitcher Plant Subtype) 737 4164 05/14/2018
Pocosin Opening (Sedge-Fern Subtype) 735 4163 05/14/2018
Pond Pine Woodland (Canebrake Subtype) 755 4433 05/14/2018
Pond Pine Woodland (Northern Subtype) 753 4652 05/14/2018
Pond Pine Woodland (Typic Subtype) 751 3671 05/14/2018
Piedmont and Coastal Plain Mesic Forests
Title Taxonomic Code NVC Code Last updated
*Piedmont and Coastal Plain Mesic Forests Description 05/14/2018
Basic Mesic Forest (Piedmont Subtype) 085 8466 05/14/2018
Mesic Mixed Hardwood Forest (Coastal Plain Subtype) 083 7211 05/14/2018
Mesic Mixed Hardwood Forest (Piedmont Subtype) 081 8465 05/14/2018
Spruce-Fir Forests
Title Taxonomic Code NVC Code Last updated
*Spruce-Fir Forests Description 03/22/2018
Fraser Fir Forest (Herb Subtype) 001 6049 03/22/2018
Fraser Fir Forest (Rhododendron Subtype) 003 6308 03/22/2018
Red Spruce-Fraser Fir Forest (Birch Transition Herb Subtype) 011 6256 03/22/2018
Red Spruce-Fraser Fir Forest (Birch Transition Shrub Subtype) 013 4983 03/22/2018
Red Spruce-Fraser Fir Forest (Boulderfield Subtype) 009 7128 03/22/2018
Red Spruce-Fraser Fir Forest (Herb Subtype) 005 7131 03/22/2018
Red Spruce-Fraser Fir Forest (Low Rhododendron Subtype) 015 6152 03/22/2018
Red Spruce-Fraser Fir Forest (Rhododendron Subtype) 007 7130 03/22/2018
Coastal Plain Floodplains
Title Taxonomic Code NVC Code Last updated
Coastal Plain Semipermanent Impoundment (Cypress-Gum Subtype) 559 2420 03/22/2018
Coastal Plain Semipermanent Impoundment (Sandhills Marsh Subtype) 555 7860 03/22/2018
Coastal Plain Semipermanent Impoundment (Sandhills Mire Subtype) 557 4800 03/22/2018
Coastal Plain Semipermanent Impoundment (Typic Marsh Subtype) 553 4290 03/22/2018
Piedmont and Coastal Plain Oak Forests
Title Taxonomic Code NVC Code Last updated
Dry Oak-Hickory Forest (Coastal Plain Subtype) 177 7246 03/22/2018
Dry Oak-Hickory Forest (Piedmont Subtype) 175 7244 03/22/2018
Dry-Mesic Basic Oak-Hickory Forest (Piedmont Subtype) 189 7232 03/22/2018
Dry-Mesic Oak-Hickory Forest (Piedmont Subtype) 175 8475 03/22/2018
Maritime Wetlands
Title Taxonomic Code NVC Code Last updated
Estuarine Beach Forest 897 4698 03/22/2018
Maritime Shrub Swamp (Dogwood Subtype) 875 7384 03/22/2018
Maritime Shrub Swamp (Red Bay Subtype) 877 4635 03/22/2018
Maritime Shrub Swamp (Willow Subtype) 879 4222 03/22/2018
Mountain Bogs and Fens
Title Taxonomic Code NVC Code Last updated
Low Mountain Seepage Bog 643 3914 05/14/2018
Southern Appalachian Fen (Glades Subtype) 647 3917 03/22/2018
Natural Lake Communities
Title Taxonomic Code NVC Code Last updated
Natural Lake Shoreline Marsh (Typic Subtype) 849 4307 03/22/2018
Natural Lake Shoreline Swamp (Cypress Subtype) 845 4466 03/22/2018
Natural Lake Shoreline Swamp (Lake Waccamaw Subtype) 847 4465 03/22/2018
Natural Lake Shoreline Swamp (Rich Subtype) 843 4424 03/22/2018
Natural Lake Shoreline Swamp (Sweetgum Subtype) 841 4481 03/22/2018
Piedmont and Mountain Floodplains
Title Taxonomic Code NVC Code Last updated
Piedmont/Mountain Semipermanent Impoundment (Montane Marsh Subtype) 591 8433 03/22/2018
Piedmont/Mountain Semipermanent Impoundment (Open Water Subtype) 589 3286 03/22/2018
Piedmont/Mountain Semipermanent Impoundment (Piedmont Marsh Subtype) 593 4290 03/22/2018
Piedmont/Mountain Semipermanent Impoundment (Shrub Subtype) 595 8474 03/22/2018
Rocky Bar and Shore (Yadkin Falls Bedrock Scour Subtype) 611 4459 03/22/2018
Wet Pine Savannas
Title Taxonomic Code NVC Code Last updated
Sandy Pine Savanna (Rush Featherling Subtype) 783 3661 05/14/2018
Sandy Pine Savanna (Typic Subtype) 781 3658 05/14/2018
Streamhead Pocosins
Title Taxonomic Code NVC Code Last updated
Streamhead Canebrake 765 3843 03/22/2018
Streamhead Pocosin 761 4435 03/22/2018