Impact of grazing on the species richness of plant communities in Mediterranean temporary pools (western Morocco)
Bouahim, Siham × Rhazi, Laila Amami, Btissam Sahib, Nargis Waterkeyn, Aline Rhazi, Mouhssine Zouahri, Abdelmjid Mesleard, François Muller, Serge D. Grillas, Patrick #
Académie des sciences
Comptes Rendus. Biologies vol:333 pages:670-679
The impact of grazing on the vegetation of Moroccan temporary pools has been studied at 2 scales: regional (inter-pools) and local (intra-pools). Half of the 16 forest pools studied is located in a reserve and ungrazed. The other half, located within public forest, is grazed.
Vegetation releve´s coupled to water-depths measurements were carried out in each pool. The results showed a significant effect of grazing on both scales of analysis. This effect was found in the species composition of the vegetation, which differed between the 2 types of pools, and in the lower species richness and abundance of plant species in the grazed pools. These differences are interpreted as resulting from the selection by herbivores and the differential tolerance of species to disturbance. These impacts are likely to expose certain species to local extinction by reducing their populations.