Taking a closer look at megafauna–ecosystem interactions
As big animals, megafauna have a big impact on ecosystem functioning and climate. Through consumption and excretion of biomass, megafauna accelerate nutrient cycling, increase plant productivity and influence soil greenhouse gas fluxes. Megafauna also emit methane when digesting plants through fermentation. The EU-funded MegaBiCycle project will study this through megafauna-ecosystem interactions in a dynamic global vegetation model. Specifically, it will test hypotheses on the effect of past and present changes in megafauna populations. The research will boost our understanding of the connection between climate, biosphere and megafauna. The findings will be useful for policy and conservation.
Fields of science
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