CEES Friday seminar (note the time): The destruction and reconstruction of Africa’s savanna ecosystems: large mammals as ecological linchpins
By Robert M. Pringle from Princeton University
NB: Start at 12:30.
Africa’s large-mammal populations continue to decline in the face of human population growth, poverty, and war. The implications of this crisis are all the more severe because large mammals represent the ecological glue that holds savanna habitats together—we risk not only losing many iconic wildlife species, but also the unraveling of the ecosystems that gave birth to humanity. I will present the results of novel research on the causes of large-mammal declines in Africa, on the myriad roles these animals play within savanna ecosystems, and on the ecological consequences of their decline and extinction. I will then turn to the hopeful example of Gorongosa National Park, in Mozambique, showing how our emerging understanding of large-mammal ecology can guide the rehabilitation of a war-ravaged ecosystem that lost >90% of its large mammals during the 1980s and 1990s.
Robert M. Pringle
Department of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology
Princeton University, Princeton, NJ 08544