A new article published in the Journal of Animal Ecology suggests that current measures to protect grasslands in the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau are damaging the ecosystem and should be stopped.

The existing policy, introduced in 2000, calls for the eradication of small burrowing mammals. These include the mountain-dwelling herbivores, the plateau pika, and a small rodent, the zokor. Both are keystone species and are known as ecosystem engineers due to their modification of and impact on the environment.

The report’s authors say that the current extermination programmes are not based on studies that considered the full effects of culling these small burrowing mammals.

Source: ENN

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