The Grassland Biome

Report
The Grassland Biome
A Sarah Feinman Presentation
Which of these is a grassland?
A
C
B
D
THEY ALL ARE GRASSLANDS!
A
C
B
D
What is a Grassland?
• “A plant community in which the dominant
species are perennial grasses, there are few or
no shrubs and trees are absent” (Moore,
1964)
• “Loose” definition
– Trees
– Species Dominance
• An area where land is dominated by grasses or
other herbaceous (non-woody) plants
Temperature and Precipitation
World Distribution
Why are grasslands important?
• Wide distribution
– Approximately 40% of global land surface
(excluding Greenland and Antarctica)
• Large carbon sink
• Biodiversity
• Important source of primary production
– Food for humans and animals
Types of Grassland
•
•
•
•
•
North American Prairies
Pampas of Argentina
Steppes- between desert and forest (Russia)
Savanna
Every continent except Antarctica
North American Prairies
Pampas of Argentina
Steppes
Savanna
World Distribution
Environmental Factors Effecting
Grasslands
•
•
•
•
•
Fire
Precipitation
Temperature
Light
CO2
Fire and Grasslands
Mayer et al 2011
Fire and Humans
Bowman et al 2009
Current Fire Observations
Westerling et al 2006
Current Fire Observations
Abatzoglou and Kolden 2011
Current Fire Observations
Pausas 2004
Fire in the Future
Moriondo et al 2006
Future Precipitation
IPCC , 2007
Grasslands and Precipitation
Grime et al 2000
Grasslands and Precipitation
Knapp et al 2002
Grasslands and Precipitation
Zavelta et al 2003
Future Temperatures
IPCC, 2007
Temperatures and Grasslands
Alward et al 1999
Temperatures and Grasslands
Zavelta et al 2003
Temperatures and Grasslands
Grime et al 2008
Light?
Future CO2
Hansen and Sato 2004
CO2 and Grasslands
Huang et al 2001
CO2 and Grasslands
Owensby et al 1999
CO2 and Grasslands
Zavelta et al 2003
Any Questions?
References
Abatzoglou, J. T. & Kolden, C. A. Climate change in western US deserts: Potential for increased wildfire and invasive annual grasses
Rangeland Ecology and Management 64, 471-478 (2011).
Alward, R. D., Detling, J. K. & Milchunas, D. G. Grassland vegetation changes and nocturnal global warming. Science 283, 229-231
(1999).
Bowman, D. M. et al. Fire in the Earth system. Science 324, 481-484, (2009).
Grime, J. P. et al. The response of two contrasting limestone grasslands to simulated climate change. Science 289, 762-765,
(2000).
Grime, J. P. et al. Long-term resistance to simulated climate change in an infertile grassland. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 105, 1002810032,(2008).
Hansen, J. & Sato, M. Greenhouse gas growth rates. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 101, 16109-16114, (2004).
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grassland
http://www.bcgrasslands.org/library/world.htm
Huang, Y. et al. Climate change as the dominant control on glacial-interglacial variations in C3 and C4 plant abundance. Science
293, 1647-1651 (2001).
Knapp, A. K. et al. Rainfall variability, carbon cycling, and plant species diversity in a mesic grassland. Science 298, 2202-2205,
2002).
Mayer, A. L. & Khalyani, A. H. Ecology. Grass trumps trees with fire. Science 334, 188-189, (2011).
Moriondo, M. et al. Potential impact of climate change on fire risk in the Mediterranean area. Climate Research 31, 85-95 (2006).
Owensby, C. E., Ham, J. M., Knapp, A. K. & Auen, L. M. Biomass production and species composition change in a tallgrass prairie
ecosystem after long-term exposure to elevated atmospheric CO2. Global Change Biology 5, 497-506 (1999).
Pausas, J. G. Changes in fire and climate in the eastern Iberian peninsula (Mediterranean basin). Climatic Change 63, 337-350
(2004).
Spedding, C. R. W. Grassland Ecology. (Clarendon Press, 1971).
Westerling, A. L., Hidalgo, H. G., Cayan, D. R. & Swetnam, T. W. Warming and earlier spring increase western U.S. forest wildfire
activity. Science 313, 940-943, 2006).
Zavelta, E. S. et al. Grassland responses to three years of elevated temperature, CO2, precipitation and N deposition. Ecological
Monographs 73, 585-604 (2003).
Photo Credits
http://africangrasslanddunsieth.blogspot.com/
http://free-photo.gatag.net/en/2010/07/16/010000.html
http://www.destination360.com
http://www.blueplanetbiomes.org/grasslands.htm
http://www.destinosdeviagem.com/wp-content/gallery/deserto-savana-floresta-africa/savana.jpg
http://www.bcgrasslands.org/library/world.htm
http://www.marietta.edu/~biol/biomes/biomes.htm
http://www.mbgnet.net/sets/grasslnd/types.htm
http://morriscourse.com/elements_of_ecology/chapter_23.htm
http://environment.nationalgeographic.com/environment/photos/grasslands-landscapes
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:PAMPAS.png
http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/media/100034/
http://www.westminster.edu/staff/athrock/Australia/Lecture.htm
http://www.cactus-art.biz/note-book/Dictionary/Dictionary_S/dictionary_steppe.htm
http://teachers.sduhsd.net/hherms/herms/METEOROLOGY/climates/steppe.htm
http://science.nationalgeographic.com/science/photos/sun-gallery/#/sunspot-loops_1236_600x450.jpg
http://www.pawas.com/graphics/grass.htm
http://www.keepbanderabeautiful.org/climatechange.html

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