Original Articles

Coevolution of African grasses and large herbivores

DOI: 10.1080/00725560.1982.9648969
Author(s): G.C. Stuart‐HillDepartment of Pasture Science,, M.T. MentisDepartment of Pasture Science,


African grasslands have developed under the impact of fire and grazing. There has been strong selection for grass plants to deter, escape and tolerate herbivory, and to escape and tolerate fire. It follows that the complete withdrawal of fire from those communities adapted to it and its replacement by heavy grazing, is not in the grazier's short or long term interests as strong selection for deterrents must result. It is proposed, then, that periodic burning in certain communities should become as legally obligatory as resting of veld.

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