Biodiversity yields financial returns

Farmers could increase their revenues by increasing biodiversity on their land. This is the conclusion reached by an interdisciplinary research team including the fields of agricultural sciences, ecology and economics at ...

Hands off our grasslands

In the north eastern Free State, a 60 km green corridor is being created that will link the upper Wilge Protected Environment to the Sneeuwberg.

How grass dances with fire

There's a long-held myth that Johannesburg is the globe's largest urban forest, resplendent with an annual purple Jacaranda show. But before the planting of these (alien) trees for timber during the Gold Rush in the 19th ...

Insect decline more extensive than suspected

Compared to a decade ago, today the number of insect species in many areas has decreased by about one-third. This is the result of a survey of an international research team led by scientists from the Technical University ...

Grassland biodiversity is blowing in the wind

Temperate grasslands are the most endangered but least protected ecosystems on Earth. Grassland restorations are crucial for recovering this important but highly degraded ecosystem. Restored grasslands, however, tend to be ...

Global change is triggering an identity switch in grasslands

Since the first Homo sapiens emerged in Africa roughly 300,000 years ago, grasslands have sustained humanity and thousands of other species. But today, those grasslands are shifting beneath our feet. Global change—which ...

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Grassland

Grasslands are areas where the vegetation is dominated by grasses (Poaceae) and other herbaceous (non-woody) plants (forbs). However, sedge (Cyperaceae) and rush (Juncaceae) families can also be found. Grasslands occur naturally on all continents except Antarctica. In temperate latitudes, such as northwestern Europe and the Great Plains and California in North America, native grasslands are dominated by perennial bunch grass species, whereas in warmer climates annual species form a greater component of the vegetation.

Grasslands are found in most ecoregion of the Earth. For example there are five terrestrial ecoregion classifications (subdivisions) of the temperate grasslands, savannas, and shrublands biome ('ecosystem'), which is one of eight terrestrial ecozones of the Earth's surface.

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