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Herbivory limits success of vegetation restoration globally
Xu, C.; Silliman, B.R.; Chen, J.; Li, X.; Thomsen, M.S.; Zhang, Q.; Lee, J.; Lefcheck, J.S.; Daleo, P.; Hughes, B.B.; Jones, H.P.; Wang, R.; Wang, S.; Smith, C.S.; Xi, X.; Altieri, A.H.; van de Koppel, J.; Palmer, T.M.; Liu, L.; Wu, J.; Li, B.; He, Q. (2023). Herbivory limits success of vegetation restoration globally. Science (Wash.) 382(6670): 589-594.
In: Science (Washington). American Association for the Advancement of Science: New York, N.Y. ISSN 0036-8075; e-ISSN 1095-9203, meer
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  • van de Koppel, J., meer

    Restoring vegetation in degraded ecosystems is an increasingly common practice for promotingbiodiversity and ecological function, but successful implementation is hampered by an incompleteunderstanding of the processes that limit restoration success. By synthesizing terrestrial andaquatic studies globally (2594 experimental tests from 610 articles), we reveal substantial herbivorecontrol of vegetation under restoration. Herbivores at restoration sites reduced vegetation abundancemore strongly (by 89%, on average) than those at relatively undegraded sites and suppressed,rather than fostered, plant diversity. These effects were particularly pronounced in regions with highertemperatures and lower precipitation. Excluding targeted herbivores temporarily or introducing theirpredators improved restoration by magnitudes similar to or greater than those achieved by managingplant competition or facilitation. Thus, managing herbivory is a promising strategy for enhancingvegetation restoration efforts.

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