Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 443091
Title Top-down and bottom-up control of large herbivore populations: a review of natural and human-induced influences
Author(s) Gandiwa, E.
Source Tropical conservation science 6 (2013)4. - ISSN 1940-0829 - p. 493 - 505.
Department(s) Resource Ecology
PE&RC
WASS
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2013
Keyword(s) gonarezhou national-park - community structure - african savannas - food-web - wildlife conservation - aboriginal overkill - trophic cascades - southern africa - body-size - ecosystems
Abstract The question whether animal populations are top-down and/or bottom-up controlled has motivated a thriving body of research over the past five decades. In this review I address two questions: 1) how do top-down and bottom-up controls influence large herbivore populations? 2) How do human activities and control systems influence the top-down and bottom-up processes that affect large herbivore population dynamics? Previous studies suggest that the relative influence of top-down vs. bottom-up control varies among ecosystems at the global level, with abrupt shifts in control possible in arid and semi-arid regions during years with large differences in rainfall. Humans as super-predators exert top-down control on large wild herbivore abundances through hunting. However, through fires and livestock grazing, humans also exert bottom-up controls on large wild herbivore abundances through altering resource availability, which influences secondary productivity. This review suggests a need for further research, especially on the human-induced top-down and bottom-up control of animal populations in different terrestrial ecosystems.
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