Effects of targeted grazing and prescribed burning on community and seed dynamics of a cheatgrass–dominated landscape

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Cattle removed 80 to 90% of standing biomass in grazed plots in May of 2005 and 2006 when B. tectorum was in the boot (phenological) stage. Grazed and ungrazed plots were burned in October 2005 and 2006. The combined grazing–burning treatment was more effective than either treatment alone in reducing B. tectorum seed input and seed bank density, and in shifting species composition from a community dominated by B. tectorum to one composed of a suite of species, with B. tectorum as a component rather than a dominant. This study provides a meso-scale precursor for landscape-scale adaptive management using grazing and burning methodologies.

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