The fossorial plains pocket gopher, Geomys bursarius, creates mounds of dirt when digging its tunnels. Mounds tend to be associated with patches of vegetation
distinct from surrounding areas. Data were collected and analyzed to determine the
effects of gopher mounds on vegetation in a northern Minnesota meadow. Results indicate that distinct patches of vegetation are associated with gopher mounds, and there
is a difference between the number of plant species growing on abandoned gopher mounds and control areas. Distinct patches could be a result of either nutrient cycling caused by the displacement of soil or invasion of plants not preferred by the herbivorous
plains pocket gopher.
Shaughnessy, Lorraine; Spohr, Bill; Puschinsky, Eric.
Effect of the Plains Pocket Gopher, Geomys bursarius, on the Vegetation of a Northern Minnesota Meadow.
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