Global Trophic Cascades News

Urgent Global Action Needed to Stop Extinction of Earth’s Last Megafauna

Cat Watch, National Geographic July 27, 2016

Conservation scientists call for global strategy to halt threatened animal extinctions

OSU Press Release, July 27, 2016: “The more I look at the trends facing the world’s largest terrestrial mammals, the more concerned I am we could lose these animals just as science is discovering how important they are to ecosystems and to the services they provide to people,” said William Ripple, distinguished professor of ecology in the College of Forestry at Oregon State University and lead author. “It’s time to really think about conserving them because declines in their numbers and habitats are happening quickly.”

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Studies confirm effect of wolves, elk on tree recovery in Yellowstone National Park

OSU Press Release, May 5, 2016: An analysis of 24 studies over a 15-year period has confirmed that wolves and their influence on elk represent a major reason for the recovery of trees that had previously been declining for decades in Yellowstone National Park.

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Sabercats and Other Carnivores Kept the Ice Age World Green

National Geographic, Dec. 2, 2015: The huge herbivores of the Ice Age were ecosystem engineers. Wherever they went, mastodons, sloths, bison, and their ilk changed the landscape by eating, defecating, trampling, and otherwise going about their plant-mashing business. But they were not isolated agents. Following out the engineer analogy, the megaherbivores of times past had managers. These were the sabercats, hyenas, wolves, and other predators past.

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Wolves Are Being 'Accidentally' Killed Off In Alarming Numbers

The Dodo, Nov. 10, 2015

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Ancient super-predators could take down a mammoth

CBS News, Oct. 27, 2015

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Prehistoric predators kept large animals in check, shaped ecosystems

OSU Press Release, Oct. 26, 2015: “Large predators can have a major role in limiting their prey and in determining the structure and function of ecosystems,” said Ripple. “But scientists have thought that the largest herbivores, such as elephants, were immune from predation. We now know that’s not the case, and based on these data from the Pleistocene (the epoch which lasted from about 2.5 million to 11,700 years ago), we now think that large carnivores did limit the large herbivores at that time.”

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Why lizards need elephants to survive

Conservation Magazine, May 22, 2015

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Save the Vegetarians, Save the World

On Earth, May 11, 2015

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