Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Rabbit and cow graze together

10.10.2003


According to Dutch researcher Liesbeth Bakker, rabbits prefer grassland grazed by cows. The rabbits benefit from grass that has been grazed short by the cows as this is of a good quality. Furthermore, this grazing relationship leads to a greater diversity of plant species.



The researchers studied a number of plots in the Junner Koeland, a floodplain grassland along the river Overijsselse Vecht. Staatsbosbeheer uses cows to manage the grassland vegetation. However, the numerous rabbits and meadow voles grazing in the area actually consume more grass than the cows.

Rabbits appear to have a preference for grassland that has been grazed by cows. Cows graze away the longer vegetation, leaving shorter grass that is easier for the rabbits to eat. Meadow voles avoid such areas of short grass as this does not provide them with enough cover to escape from their enemies.


Grazing by both cows and rabbits leads to a great diversity of plants. In particular, prostrate herbs such as self-heal, bulbous buttercup and cat’s ear thrive in short vegetation, because then they receive enough light to survive. The greatest diversity of plants is found in places where rabbit digging has resulted in bare soil. Therefore, cows ensure that sufficient light reaches the ground, whilst rabbits ensure good germination spots for prostrate herbs.

Finally, Bakker discovered that rabbits are a key factor in determining the extent of shrub cover and whether or not oak seedlings can grow in this. If there are few rabbits, shrub cover can develop in an area grazed by cows and the oak seedlings can root in the shrubs because the shrubs protect the seedlings from the cows. If there are many rabbits, these eat part of the shrub cover and in so doing eliminate the places where oaks can establish.

The vegetation on the Junner Koeland is a mosaic of grassland, shrub cover and oak wood. Such a landscape often contains a large diversity of plants and animals. Management of these natural habitats requires a knowledge of how different grazers affect the ecosystem concerned.

Sonja Jacobs | alfa

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht Dry landscapes can increase disease transmission
20.06.2018 | Forschungsverbund Berlin e.V.

nachricht 100 % Organic Farming in Bhutan – a Realistic Target?
15.06.2018 | Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

All articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Temperature-controlled fiber-optic light source with liquid core

In a recent publication in the renowned journal Optica, scientists of Leibniz-Institute of Photonic Technology (Leibniz IPHT) in Jena showed that they can accurately control the optical properties of liquid-core fiber lasers and therefore their spectral band width by temperature and pressure tuning.

Already last year, the researchers provided experimental proof of a new dynamic of hybrid solitons– temporally and spectrally stationary light waves resulting...

Im Focus: Overdosing on Calcium

Nano crystals impact stem cell fate during bone formation

Scientists from the University of Freiburg and the University of Basel identified a master regulator for bone regeneration. Prasad Shastri, Professor of...

Im Focus: AchemAsia 2019 will take place in Shanghai

Moving into its fourth decade, AchemAsia is setting out for new horizons: The International Expo and Innovation Forum for Sustainable Chemical Production will take place from 21-23 May 2019 in Shanghai, China. With an updated event profile, the eleventh edition focusses on topics that are especially relevant for the Chinese process industry, putting a strong emphasis on sustainability and innovation.

Founded in 1989 as a spin-off of ACHEMA to cater to the needs of China’s then developing industry, AchemAsia has since grown into a platform where the latest...

Im Focus: First real-time test of Li-Fi utilization for the industrial Internet of Things

The BMBF-funded OWICELLS project was successfully completed with a final presentation at the BMW plant in Munich. The presentation demonstrated a Li-Fi communication with a mobile robot, while the robot carried out usual production processes (welding, moving and testing parts) in a 5x5m² production cell. The robust, optical wireless transmission is based on spatial diversity; in other words, data is sent and received simultaneously by several LEDs and several photodiodes. The system can transmit data at more than 100 Mbit/s and five milliseconds latency.

Modern production technologies in the automobile industry must become more flexible in order to fulfil individual customer requirements.

Im Focus: Sharp images with flexible fibers

An international team of scientists has discovered a new way to transfer image information through multimodal fibers with almost no distortion - even if the fiber is bent. The results of the study, to which scientist from the Leibniz-Institute of Photonic Technology Jena (Leibniz IPHT) contributed, were published on 6thJune in the highly-cited journal Physical Review Letters.

Endoscopes allow doctors to see into a patient’s body like through a keyhole. Typically, the images are transmitted via a bundle of several hundreds of optical...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Munich conference on asteroid detection, tracking and defense

13.06.2018 | Event News

2nd International Baltic Earth Conference in Denmark: “The Baltic Sea region in Transition”

08.06.2018 | Event News

ISEKI_Food 2018: Conference with Holistic View of Food Production

05.06.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Creating a new composite fuel for new-generation fast reactors

20.06.2018 | Materials Sciences

Game-changing finding pushes 3D-printing to the molecular limit

20.06.2018 | Materials Sciences

Could this material enable autonomous vehicles to come to market sooner?

20.06.2018 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>