Welcome to Jozef Šibík's webpage




Mgr. Monika Budzáková


Thesis: Morphological, karyological and ecological variability of the species Sesleria caerulea and S. tatrae and their potential hybrids in the Central mountains of Western Carpathians

Sesleria caerulea (syn. S. albicans) is a tretraploid species (2n=4x=28), whereas S. tatrae is an octoploid taxon (2n=8x=56). The origin and genome composition of both polyploid species are currently unknown. S. caerulea is the most common Sesleria species in Slovakia, compared to S. tatrae which occurs only in the mountains of the Slovak and Polish Carpathians (endemit of Slovakia and Poland). The distribution areas of the both species overlap and populations of both species are intermingled. As the morphology of all Sesleria species is often under a strong influence of the environment, atypical plants can be freqently found. The taxonomic assignement of such deviating forms is difficult. This is also the case of S. albicans and S. tatrae within the contact zones of both species. Moreover, it is likely that the gradual morphological variation is a result of inter-specific crossing and backcrossing betwen the two species. The presumable hexaploid (2n=6x=42) hybrid, formally described as S. x tatrorum Domin, is most likely backcrossing to its parental species. Thus, inter-specific hybridization and introgression are hypothesized as principal factors responsible for the extant morphological diversity of Sesleria populations within the contact zones. Up to now, no karyological or genetic data were acquired to analyze the extent of the presumed gene flow between the Sesleria species. In the proposed project, we aim to analyze the spatial distribution of Sesleria populations and individuals of a different ploidy levels (4x, 6x and 8x) along altitudinal transects in the selected contact zones.

Mgr. Zuzana Ballová


Thesis: Diversity and ecological variability of alpine vegetation – effect of geographical and environmental factors and species’ interactions

Key words: alpine vegetation, competition, diversity, disturbance, plant traits, soil nutrients, species richness, vegetation structure.

Species richness in the alpine zone varies significantly when communities are compared. Competitive and facilitative interactions among plant species in different abiotic environments potentially link productivity, vegetation structure, species composition and functional diversity. Burrowing mammals have the potential to affect microtopography and soil properties, thus influencing floristic structure and composition. Livestock modify the overall vegetation composition, and thereby modify spatial heterogeneity at the landscape scale, whereas marmots modify spatial heterogeneity at the local scale. The aim of my thesis is to investigate these plant interactions between selected alpine communities along environmental and geographical gradients in harsh mountain conditions. Interactions between plants and animals (grazing, burrowing and trampling activities) will be evaluated according to other environmental factors, emphasis will be placed on the assessment of their importance in different plant communities in different mountain ranges of Europe, depending on the intensity of these interactions and their relative importance. We hypothesised that the importance of competition would be higher in more productive sites. Competition and disturbance seemed only to play a secondary role in the form of fine-tuning species richness in specific communities. Patterns in local species richness result from the action of two opposing forces: declining species pool and decreasing intensity of competition with altitude. Disturbance by rodents increases the abundance of rhizomatous species and fugitive forbs, species richness at colony scale, nitrogen concentrations in the on-mound vegetation. Their disturbance also decreases plant biomass, species richness at the mound scale, standing dead vegetation, the standing crop of vegetation, and the live: dead plant ratio. The experimental sites will be chosen to encompass most of the floristic diversity observed along gradients of elevation and topography which are the two main ecological gradients associated with alpine plant communities.

Masters (Graduate):

Bc. Silvia Chasníková


Thesis: The distribution and variability of the selected plant communities affected by human activities in the subalpine belt of the Krivánska Malá Fatra Mts.

Since the year 2009, I have been doing phytosociological research in the Krivánska Malá Fatra Mts. After I obtained a bachelor´s degree I have continued in my master´s degree in the same area with the similar, but extended topic, which includes history of settlement and grazing in the area. And with a little bit of luck I would like to continue in this field of research in my future studies.

Bc. Silvia Bittnerová


Title: The distribution and variability of the dwarf-shrub plant communities (the alliance Vaccinion myrtilli) in the Krivánska Malá Fatra Mts.

I have been studing botany at the Faculty of Natural Sciences at Comenius University. I am interested in geobotany of high mountain vegetation. Since 2010, I´ve been doing research of the dwarf shrub communities of subalpine belt with dominant species – Vaccinium myrtillus in the Malá Fatra Mts and Oravské Beskydy Mts. My research is focused on the influence of ecological gradiens, abiotic and biotic factors on these communities. I am also mapping distribution and variability of shrub subalpine vegetation.

Bc. Zita Rimajová-Rydzyková


Title: The variability and the changes of the vegetation in the Valley of Seven Springs (Belianske Tatry Mts).

The Valley of Seven Springs is one of the floristic richest localities in Slovakia. We can find there several types of high mountain vegetation - natural, seminatural as well as ruderal. It is caused by specific natural conditions (ecological factors related with high altitude climate and limestone bedrock) and human activities, which influenced local flora for centuries. Nowadays, after pasture abandonment and hike restriction, we can observe secondary succession there. The most important aims of my thesis are focused on primary and secondary succession in the last 50 years and ecological gradients which are associated with.

Bachelor's degree (Undergraduate):

Silvia Chasníková


Thesis: The distribution and variability of the plant communties with Rumex alpinus in the Krivánska Malá Fatra Mts.

Finished in the year 2011.

Silvia Bittnerová


Title: The distribution and variability of the plant communties with Vaccinium myrtillus in the Krivánska Malá Fatra Mts.

Finished in the year 2011.

Zita Rimajová


Title: The vegetation of the Valley of Seven Springs and its changes in the last 50 years.

The Valley of Seven Springs attracts people for centuries as it is one of the floristic richest localities in Slovakia. It is due to specific natural conditions. Belianske Tatry Mts are highest limestone massif similar to Alps. Human activities like grazing, logging and hiking have induced gradual changes of natural phytocenosis. This thesis was focused on those changes caused by ending of grazing as well as development of tourism. Finished in the year 2011.

Branislav Kundrák


Title: Distribution and variability of dwarf-shrub communities in alpine belt of Tatra Mts (Slovakia)

Finished in the year 2011.


RNDr. Ivana Šibíková-Svitková, Ph.D.


Title: The occurrence of arctic-alpine elements in relation to enviromental factors, their functional types and phytogeography

The presented PhD thesis was concerned with different views on high-altitude vegetation of the Western Carpathians. The thesis was successfully defended in the year 2011.

Copyright - Institute of Botany SAS, Dúbravská cesta 9, 845 23 Bratislava, SR
Design - Matúš Kempa (matus.kempa(at)gmail.com)