New insights into the relationship between climate, large herbivores, and oak trees.

Results from a large-herbivore experiment show how climate change will alter survival outcomes for oak seedlings in California woodlands.

June 15, 2022

We studied how three large herbivore regimes, namely no large herbivores, wild large herbivores only, and both wild herbivores and cattle, impacted the abundance and survival of oak seedlings across a range of climates. Our results suggest that climate change will limit oak establishment and modulate the impact of large herbivores on oak seedlings, with wild large herbivores becoming a beneficial factor for seedling abundance, and both wild herbivores and cattle reducing seedling mortality as the climate becomes warmer and drier.