Effects of herbivores on grassland plant diversity

Han Olff, Mark E. Ritchie

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

1124 Scopus citations


The role of herbivores in controlling plant species richness is a critical issue in the conservation and management of grassland biodiversity. Numerous field experiments in grassland plant communities show that herbivores often, but not always, increase plant diversity. Recent work suggests that the mechanisms of these effects involve alteration of local colonization of species from regional species pool or local extinction of species, and recent syntheses and models suggest that herbivore effects on plant diversity should vary across environmental gradients of soil fertility and precipitation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)261-265
Number of pages5
JournalTrends in Ecology and Evolution
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1 1998
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics


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