Introduced herbivores restore Late Pleistocene ecological functions

@article{Lundgren2020IntroducedHR,
  title={Introduced herbivores restore Late Pleistocene ecological functions},
  author={Erick J. Lundgren and D. Ramp and John Rowan and Owen Middleton and Simon D Schowanek and {\'O}scar Sanisidro and Scott P Carroll and Matt Davis and C. Sandom and J. Svenning and Arian D. Wallach},
  journal={Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences},
  year={2020},
  volume={117},
  pages={7871 - 7878}
}
Significance Humans have caused extinctions of large-bodied mammalian herbivores over the past ∼100,000 y, leading to cascading changes in ecosystems. Conversely, introductions of herbivores have, in part, numerically compensated for extinction losses. However, the net outcome of the twin anthropogenic forces of extinction and introduction on herbivore assemblages has remained unknown. We found that a primary outcome of introductions has been the reintroduction of key ecological functions… Expand
20 Citations
Reintroducing extirpated herbivores could partially reverse the late Quaternary decline of large and grazing species
TLDR
Many terrestrial herbivore assemblages—and hence ecosystems—would remain trophically downgraded, even after bringing back all extant, native herbivores, and complementary interventions would be required to achieve complete functional restoration. Expand
Extinctions have strongly reduced the mammalian consumption of primary productivity
TLDR
The results show that mammalian herbivores naturally play an important part in ecosystems at a global scale, but that this effect has been strongly reduced by extinctions and extirpations. Expand
Megafauna extinctions have reduced biotic connectivity worldwide
AIM: Connectivity among ecosystems is necessary to sustain ecological processes that promote biodiversity, community stability and ecosystem resilience, such as organism and nutrient dispersal. AlongExpand
Trophic rewilding presents regionally specific opportunities for mitigating climate change
TLDR
This paper explores how the functional composition of terrestrial large-herbivore and -carnivore guilds varies between three mammal distribution scenarios: Present-Natural, Current-Day and Extant-Native Trophic (ENT) Rewilding. Expand
Echoes of the late Pleistocene in a novel trophic cascade between cougars and feral donkeys
TLDR
A behaviorally-mediated trophic cascade between cougars and feral donkeys at desert wetlands in North America rewires an ancient food web, with diverse implications for modern ecosystems. Expand
Functional traits of the world’s late Quaternary large-bodied avian and mammalian herbivores
TLDR
HerbiTraits provides a tool for the analysis of herbivore functional diversity both past and present and its effects on Earth’s ecosystems, and includes key traits that influence how herbivores interact with ecosystems, namely body mass, diet, fermentation type, habitat use, and limb morphology. Expand
Domestic Livestock and Rewilding: Are They Mutually Exclusive?
Human influence extends across the globe, from the tallest mountains to the deep bottom of the oceans. There is a growing call for nature to be protected from the negative impacts of human activityExpand
Rewilding Lite: Using Traditional Domestic Livestock to Achieve Rewilding Outcomes
The vision of rewilding is to return ecosystems to a “natural” or “self-willed” state with trophic complexity, dispersal (and connectivity) and stochastic disturbance in place. The concept is gainingExpand
A wolf in fox's clothing? Using stable isotopes to quantify ecological replacement
Ecological replacement as a conservation tool presupposes that nonnative taxa can restore degraded ecosystems by performing the ecological functions of extinct taxa. This assumption is rarely testedExpand
Naïve plant communities and individuals may initially suffer in the face of reintroduced megafauna: An experimental exploration of rewilding from an African savanna rangeland
TLDR
The suggestion that as the authors “rewild” their biodiversity landscapes, they redefine “wildness” in the 21st Century to be inclusive of (low impact, and sometimes traditional) human practices that are compatible with the sustainability of native (and re-introduced) biodiversity is supported. Expand
...
1
2
...

References

SHOWING 1-10 OF 70 REFERENCES
Pleistocene Rewilding: An Optimistic Agenda for Twenty‐First Century Conservation
TLDR
Pleistocene rewilding would deliberately promote large, long‐lived species over pest and weed assemblages, facilitate the persistence and ecological effectiveness of megafauna on a global scale, and broaden the underlying premise of conservation from managing extinction to encompass restoring ecological and evolutionary processes. Expand
Introduced megafauna are rewilding the Anthropocene
TLDR
It is proposed that attitudes towards introduced megafauna should allow for broader research and management goals, and much remains unknown about the ecology of introduced herbivores, but evidence suggests that these populations are rewilding modern ecosystems. Expand
Megafauna and ecosystem function from the Pleistocene to the Anthropocene
TLDR
Progress is reviewed in understanding of how megafauna affect ecosystem physical and trophic structure, species composition, biogeochemistry, and climate, drawing on special features of PNAS and Ecography that have been published as a result of an international workshop held in Oxford in 2014. Expand
Body size downgrading of mammals over the late Quaternary
TLDR
This work demonstrates that size-selective extinction was already under way in the oldest interval and occurred on all continents, within all trophic modes, and across all time intervals, and the degree of selectivity was unprecedented in 65 million years of mammalian evolution. Expand
Dietary responses of Sahul (Pleistocene Australia-New Guinea) megafauna to climate and environmental change
Abstract. Throughout the late Quaternary, the Sahul (Pleistocene Australia—New Guinea) vertebrate fauna was dominated by a diversity of large mammals, birds, and reptiles, commonly referred to asExpand
Status and Ecological Effects of the World’s Largest Carnivores
TLDR
The status, threats, and ecological importance of the 31 largest mammalian carnivores globally are reviewed and a Global Large Carnivore Initiative is proposed to coordinate local, national, and international research, conservation, and policy. Expand
Novel trophic cascades: apex predators enable coexistence.
TLDR
It is argued that many species, regardless of their origin or priors, are allies for the retention and restoration of biodiversity in top-down regulated ecosystems. Expand
Can trophic rewilding reduce the impact of fire in a more flammable world?
TLDR
To date, rewilding projects that aim to restore large herbivores have paid little attention to the value of large animals in moderating fire regimes, and Rewilding potentially offers a powerful tool for managing the risks of wildfire and its impacts on natural and human values. Expand
Steppe-Tundra Transition: A Herbivore-Driven Biome Shift at the End of the Pleistocene
TLDR
Results indicate that mammalian grazers have a sufficiently large effect on vegetation and soil moisture that their extinction could have contributed substantially to the shift from predominance of steppe to tundra at the Pleistocene-Holocene boundary. Expand
Disparate responses of above- and belowground properties to soil disturbance by an invasive mammal
TLDR
It was found that after 3-years of exclusion, belowground foraging by wild boar had a larger impact on plant community structure and biomass than it did on soil nutrient processes. Expand
...
1
2
3
4
5
...