The effects of the plains pocket gopher (Geomys bursarius) mound building on plant species diversity were investigated in an old field in June 2008. Past studies have shown conflicting results that mound building negatively impacts plant species diversity or that mound building positively impacts plant species diversity. To conduct our study we compared vegetation on new mounds, abandoned mounds, old mounds, and control areas with no mounds. Our results support our hypothesis that G.bursarius activity in an old field increases plant species richness. It also agrees with historical studies that gopher mound building can generate a prairie ecosystem in
disturbed areas and increase plant heterogeneity present.
Blake, Amy; Strelow, Desiree; Kraft, Tanner.
Impacts of Geomys Bursarius on vegetation patterns found in an old field in Clearwater County, MN.
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