November 11, 2008

Wisents have different effects on vegetation than Highland cattle

Recent comparative research into the wisents at Kraansvlak and Scottish Highland cattle in the nearby Kennemer dunes indicates that the foraging behaviour of the two types of animal differs significantly. Wisents eat more tree and shrub bark, whereas Highland cattle eat more thin twigs. Scottish Highland cattle also appear to graze more often than wisents. Provisional results show that seed germination from wisent droppings is three times as high as that from Highland cattle dung. The variety of plant species germinating from the two kinds of dung differs highly as well. The next few years research will be continued to obtain more information and to make the provisional results more reliable. Students who are interested in joining the research activities can contact Leo Linnartz. For more information on the research project and the provisional results, please contact the Research Coordinator: Dr. Joris Cromsigt.



Wisent schuurt tegen boom. Foto: Doreen Rugers