Grazing and ecosystem service delivery in global drylands

By: , and 



Grazing represents the most extensive use of land worldwide. Yet its impacts on ecosystem services remain uncertain because pervasive interactions between grazing pressure, climate, soil properties, and biodiversity may occur but have never been addressed simultaneously. Using a standardized survey at 98 sites across six continents, we show that interactions between grazing pressure, climate, soil, and biodiversity are critical to explain the delivery of fundamental ecosystem services across drylands worldwide. Increasing grazing pressure reduced ecosystem service delivery in warmer and species-poor drylands, whereas positive effects of grazing were observed in colder and species-rich areas. Considering interactions between grazing and local abiotic and biotic factors is key for understanding the fate of dryland ecosystems under climate change and increasing human pressure.

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Grazing and ecosystem service delivery in global drylands
Series title Science
DOI 10.1126/science.abq4062
Volume 378
Issue 6622
Year Published 2022
Language English
Publisher American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)
Contributing office(s) Southwest Biological Science Center
Description 6 p.
First page 915
Last page 920
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