Linking Top-down Forces to the Pleistocene Megafaunal Extinctions

  title={Linking Top-down Forces to the Pleistocene Megafaunal Extinctions},
  author={William J Ripple and Blaire Van Valkenburgh},
Humans, in conjunction with natural top-down processes and through a sequence of cascading trophic interactions, may have contributed to the Pleistocene megafaunal extinctions. The arrival of the first humans, as hunters and scavengers, through top-down forcing, could have triggered a population collapse of large herbivores and their predators. We present evidence that the large mammalian herbivores of the North American Pleistocene were primarily predator limited and at low densities, and… CONTINUE READING
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