Why is grassland a key issue in climate change?
In the last few years, grassland and its associated habitat have been the focus of intense research efforts across the globe.
But, the research that has been done in this area is largely limited to grassland conservation efforts.
Now, researchers at the University of Oxford have come to the realization that this may be changing, and that grassland is becoming a critical habitat for the species of insects and mammals that are key to the health of ecosystems.
The team led by Dr. Williams Gould found that the prevalence of grasslands is directly linked to the abundance of species in grasslands.
They concluded that grasslands are a key ecosystem support system for many species of animals, and their health is directly related to the density of species within grasslands and their associated habitats.
“Many species of invertebrates rely on grasslands for food, shelter and breeding habitat, which means that the richness of grassland habitats is directly dependent on the diversity of insects, animals and mammals in those grasslands,” Dr. Gould told Reuters.
“These findings support the idea that a change in grassland habitat composition could have a significant impact on the health and well-being of these species.”
In addition to grasslands, the researchers found that grass has an impact on other ecosystems, such as wetlands and lakes.
“This is the first study that has shown that there is a direct correlation between the abundance and the density in grass of different species of birds, invertebrate animals and mammal species,” said Dr. Williams Gould.
“This finding supports the idea of changing the composition of grasses and other habitats in order to support those species in order for those species to thrive.”
Dr. William Gould said this research could be of great benefit to researchers around the world.
“I think this will allow us to gain a greater understanding of the effects of land use changes in ecosystems, especially when it comes to species that are critical for maintaining the health, stability and biodiversity of the ecosystems,” he said.
The paper, published in the journal Science Advances, was published as part of the annual meeting of the American Institute of Biological Sciences (AIBS).