Truman P Young

Truman P Young
University of California, Davis | UCD · Department of Plant Sciences

Ph.D.

About

256
Publications
110,767
Reads
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Introduction
Truman P. Young is a Research Professor and Professor Emeritus in the Department of Plant Sciences, at the University of California, Davis. Truman continues to do research in plant population and community ecology, restoration ecology, and conservation biology in human-dominated landscapes. Two of the major research projects of the Young lab are the Kenya Long-term Exclosure Experiment (KLEE), and Priority and Year Effects in Restoration (PRYER).
Additional affiliations
July 2003 - June 2020
University of California, Davis
Position
  • Professor
January 1996 - May 2003
University of California, Davis
Position
  • Lecturer
September 1991 - December 1995
Fordham University
Position
  • Professor (Associate)
Education
September 1976 - May 1981
University of Pennsylvania
Field of study
  • Biology
September 1972 - December 1975
University of Chicago
Field of study
  • Biology

Publications

Publications (256)
Article
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Competition and compatibility between livestock and wildlife in Africa has been a point of considerable speculation, with implications for conservation. However, controlled replicated experiments are lacking. Here we report on the results of a long-term exclosure experiment in Laikipia, Kenya, in which different guilds of large mammalian herbivores...
Article
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Plant communities in abiotically stressful, or 'harsh,' habitats have been reported to be less invaded by non-native species than those in more moderate habitats. Here, we synthesize descriptive and experimental evidence for low levels of invasion in habitats characterized by a variety of environmental stressors: low nitrogen; low phosphorus; salin...
Article
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The widespread replacement of wild ungulate herbivores by domestic livestock in African savannas is composed of two interrelated phenomena: (1) loss or reduction in numbers of individual wildlife species or guilds and (2) addition of livestock to the system. Each can have important implications for plant community dynamics. Yet very few studies hav...
Article
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Restoration success is often hampered by the failure of less dominant competitors to establish. An emerging literature on priority effects suggests the manipulation of community assembly as a useful technique to help overcome these difficulties by altering competitive relationships. We present data from a set of four priority experiments, carried o...
Article
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Environmental conditions that vary from year‐to‐year can be strong drivers of ecological dynamics, including the composition of newly assembled communities. However, ecologists often chalk such dynamics up to “noise” in ecological experiments. Our lack of attention to such “year effects” hampers our understanding of contingencies in ecological asse...
Preprint
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Ecological theory posits that temporal stability patterns in plant populations are associated with differences in species ecological strategies. However, empirical evidence is lacking about which traits, or trade-offs, underlie species stability, specially across different ecosystems. To address this, we compiled a global collection of long-term pe...
Article
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Ecological stability in plant communities is shaped by bottom-up processes like environmental resource fluctuations and top-down controls such as herbivory, each of which have demonstrated direct effects but may also act indirectly by altering plant community dynamics. These indirect effects, called biotic stability mechanisms, have been studied ac...
Article
Analysing temporal patterns in plant communities is extremely important to quantify the extent and the consequences of ecological changes, especially considering the current biodiversity crisis. Long‐term data collected through the regular sampling of permanent plots represent the most accurate resource to study ecological succession, analyse the s...
Article
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Fire, herbivores, and climatic factors are all major drivers of savanna and grassland dynamics, and they interact in complex ways, which are still in the process of being explored. In particular, herbivores can reduce fire intensity by removal of biomass, and this could be reinforced by herbivores’ attraction to recently burned sites, although gras...
Article
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Over a quarter of the world's land surface is grazed by cattle and other livestock, which are replacing wild herbivores and widely regarded as drivers of global biodiversity declines. The effects of livestock presence versus absence on wild herbivores are well documented. However, the environmental context-specific effects of cattle stocking rate o...
Article
Understanding the determinants of early invasion resistance is a major challenge for designing plant communities that efficiently repel invaders. Recent evidence highlighted the significant role of priority effects in early community assembly as they affect species composition, structure and functional properties, but the consequences of native com...
Article
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Over a quarter of the world's land surface is grazed by cattle and other livestock, which are replacing wild herbivores, potentially impairing ecosystem structure and functions. Previous research suggests that cattle at moderate stocking rates can functionally replace wild herbivores in shaping understory communities, but it is unclear whether this...
Preprint
Full-text available
Analysing temporal patterns in plant communities is extremely important to quantify the extent and the consequences of ecological changes, especially considering the current biodiversity crisis. Long-term data collected through the regular sampling of permanent plots represent the most accurate resource to study ecological succession, analyse the s...
Article
Full-text available
The extinction of 80% of megaherbivore (>1,000 kg) species towards the end of the Pleistocene altered vegetation structure, fire dynamics, and nutrient cycling worldwide. Ecologists have proposed (re)introducing megaherbivores or their ecological analogues to restore lost ecosystem functions and reinforce extant but declining megaherbivore populati...
Article
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Both termites and large mammalian herbivores (LMH) are savanna ecosystem engineers that have profound impacts on ecosystem structure and function. Both of these savanna engineers modulate many common and shared dietary resources such as woody and herbaceous plant biomass, yet few studies have addressed how they impact one another. In particular, it...
Article
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Excluding large native mammals is an inverse test of rewilding. A 25-year exclosure experiment in an African savanna rangeland offers insight into the potentials and pitfalls of the rewilding endeavor as they relate to the native plant community. A broad theme that has emerged from this research is that entire plant communities, as well as individu...
Article
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Cattle and other livestock graze more than a quarter of the world’s terrestrial area and are widely regarded to be drivers of global biodiversity declines. Studies often compare the effects of livestock presence/absence but, to our knowledge, no studies have tested for interactive effects between large wild herbivores and livestock at varying stock...
Preprint
Full-text available
Both termites and large mammalian herbivores (LMH) are savanna ecosystem engineers that have profound impacts on ecosystem structure and function. Both of these savanna engineers modulate many common and shared dietary resources such as woody and herbaceous plant biomass, yet few studies have addressed how they impact one another. In particular, it...
Article
Full-text available
Understanding animals’ use of space can shed valuable light on multiple other aspects of behavioral ecology, including social organization, dispersal, and foraging efficiency. Home ranges, territories, core areas, and home range overlaps have been widely studied, but unless animals are directly observed or are tracked remotely on a fine temporal sc...
Article
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Grassland and savanna ecosystems, important for both livelihoods and biodiversity conservation, are strongly affected by ecosystem drivers such as herbivory, fire, and drought. Interactions among fire, herbivores and vegetation produce complex feedbacks in these ecosystems, but these have rarely been studied in the context of fuel continuity and re...
Article
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Questions Compensatory dynamics are described as one of the main mechanisms that increase community stability, e.g. where decreases of some species on a year‐to‐year basis are offset by an increase in others. Deviations from perfect synchrony between species (asynchrony) have therefore been advocated as an important mechanism underlying biodiversit...
Article
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Despite growing recognition of the conservation value of grassy biomes, our understanding of how to restore biodiverse tropical and subtropical grassy biomes (grasslands and savannas; TGB) remains limited. Several tools have recently been identified for TGB restoration including prescribed fires, appropriate management of livestock and wild herbivo...
Technical Report
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Translation of the original article "Myth-busting tropical grassy biome restoration” published in Restoration Ecology Tradução do artigo original “Myth-busting tropical grassy biome restoration” publicado na Restoration Ecology que pode ser acessado aqui (https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/rec.13202?af=R). Em caso de citação, deve-se...
Article
The stability of ecological communities is critical for the stable provisioning of ecosystem services, such as food and forage production, carbon sequestration, and soil fertility. Greater biodiversity is expected to enhance stability across years by decreasing synchrony among species, but the drivers of stability in nature remain poorly resolved....
Article
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The stability of ecological communities is critical for the stable provisioning of ecosystem services, such as food and forage production, carbon sequestration, and soil fertility. Greater biodiversity is expected to enhance stability across years by decreasing synchrony among species, but the drivers of stability in nature remain poorly resolved....
Article
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Dry grasslands of the North‐western Mediterranean Basin are semi‐natural species‐rich ecosystems, composed of many annual species and some structuring perennial species. As these grasslands have been used as rangelands for centuries, human management (grazing; fire regimes) is one of their main ecological and evolutionary drivers, along with the Me...
Article
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The historical focus in research and policy on forest restoration and temperate ecosystems has created misunderstandings for the restoration of tropical and subtropical old-growth grassy biomes (TOGGB). Such misconceptions have detrimental consequences for biodiversity, ecosystem services and human livelihoods in woodlands, savannas and grasslands...
Article
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Wild herbivore populations are declining in many African savannas, which is related to replacement by livestock (mainly cattle) and the loss of megaherbivores. Although some livestock management practices may be compatible with the conservation of native savanna biodiversity, the sustainability of these integrated wild herbivore/livestock managemen...
Article
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Priority effects can be used to promote target species during restoration. Early planting can provide an advantage over later-arriving species, increasing abundance of these early-arrivers in restored communities. However, we have limited knowledge of the indirect impacts of priority effects in restoration. In particular, we do not understand how p...
Article
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The persistence and distribution of species under changing climates can be affected by both direct effects of the environment and indirect effects via biotic interactions. However, the relative importance of direct and indirect climate effects on recruitment stages is poorly understood. We conducted a manipulative experiment to test the multiway in...
Article
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In order to understand how the effects of land‐use change vary among taxa and environmental contexts, we investigate how three types of land‐use change have influenced phylogenetic diversity (PD) and species composition of three functionally distinct communities: plants, small mammals, and large mammals. We found large mammal communities were by fa...
Article
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Wild large herbivores are declining worldwide. Despite extensive use of exclosure experiments to investigate herbivore impacts, there is little consensus on the effects of wild large herbivores on ecosystem function. Of the ecosystem functions likely impacted, we reviewed the five most‐studied in exclosure experiments: ecosystem resilience/resistan...
Article
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1.Savanna tree cover is dynamic due to disturbances such as fire and herbivory. Frequent fires can limit a key demographic transition from sapling to adult height classes in savanna trees. Saplings may be caught in a ‘fire trap’, wherein individuals repeatedly resprout following fire top‐kill events. Saplings only rarely escape the cycle by attaini...
Article
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Herbivores alter plant biodiversity (species richness) in many of the world’s ecosystems, but the magnitude and the direction of herbivore effects on biodiversity vary widely within and among ecosystems. One current theory predicts that herbivores enhance plant biodiversity at high productivity but have the opposite effect at low productivity. Yet,...
Article
Disturbance such as wildfire may create opportunities for plant communities to reorganize in response to climate change. The interaction between climate change and disturbance may be particularly important in forests, where many of the foundational plant species (trees) are long‐lived and where poor initial tree establishment can result in conversi...
Article
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Large mammalian herbivores (LMH) are known to suppress populations of small mammals in African savanna ecosystems; whether this suppression is driven by depletion of nutrients and food resources, or of cover, is poorly understood. Cattle management creates scattered, persistent, nutrient-enriched areas (glades). Similarly, prescribed fire may enhan...
Article
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African savanna termite mounds function as nutrient‐rich foraging hotspots for different herbivore species, but little is known about their effects on the interaction between domestic and wild herbivores. Understanding such effects is important for better management of these herbivore guilds in landscapes where they share habitats. Working in a cen...
Article
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Successful forest expansion into grassland can be limited by seed dispersal and adverse conditions for tree seedlings in the grassland environment. In the high‐elevation Andes, human‐induced fragmentation has exacerbated the patchy distribution of Polylepis forests, threatening their unique biological communities and spurring restoration interest....
Article
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On rangelands worldwide, cattle interact with many forms of biodiversity, most obviously with vegetation and other large herbivores. Since 1995, we have been manipulating the presence of cattle, mesoherbivores, and megaherbivores (elephants and giraffes) in a series of eighteen 4-ha (10-acre) plots at the Kenya Long-term Exclosure Experiment. We re...
Article
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African savannas support an iconic fauna, but they are undergoing large-scale population declines and extinctions of large (>5 kg) mammals. Long-term, controlled, replicated experiments that explore the consequences of this defaunation (and its replacement with livestock) are rare. The Mpala Research Centre in Laikipia County, Kenya, hosts three su...
Article
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East Africa is a global hot spot for the diversity of ixodid ticks. As ectoparasites and as vectors of pathogens, ticks negatively affect the well-being of humans, livestock and wildlife. To prevent tick infestations, livestock owners and managers typically treat livestock with acaricides that kill ticks when they attempt to feed on livestock hosts...
Article
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The outcomes of restoration efforts are contingent on the specifics of the restoration practices utilized, but also on uncontrolled contingencies such as site effects and year effects. Although restoration practitioners have long been aware that the successes of their projects vary from site to site and from year to year, there have been few direct...
Article
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Although disturbance theory has been recognized as a useful framework in examining the stability of ant-plant mutualisms, very few studies have examined the effects of fire disturbance on these mutualisms. In myrmecophyte-dominated savannas, fire and herbivory are key drivers that could influence ant-plant mutualisms by causing complete colony mort...
Article
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The order in which species arrive during community assembly can be an important driver of community composition and function. However, the strength of these priority effects can be variable, in part because of strong site and year effects. To understand how priority effects vary in importance with abiotic conditions, we initiated identical communit...
Chapter
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Cambridge Core - Ecology and Conservation - Ant-Plant Interactions - edited by Paulo S. Oliveira
Article
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Due to fire suppression policies, timber harvest, and other management practices over the last century, many low- to mid-elevation forests in semiarid parts of the western United States have accumulated high fuel loads and dense, multi-layered canopies that are dominated by shade-tolerant and fire-sensitive conifers. To a great extent, the future s...
Article
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Both wild and prescribed fire in savanna ecosystems influence habitat use by herbivores by creating or maintaining spatial and temporal heterogeneity in forage quality and vegetation cover. Yet little is known about how spatial scales influence long-term persistence of fire effects. We examined changes over a 6-year period in herbivore preference f...
Article
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Mountainous land in Haiti is highly degraded following decades of deforestation and erosion. Although mountainous landscapes represent an important target for forest recovery, there is a lack of empirical information to guide reforestation of sloping tropical lands. Using sapling survival data from 299 replicated reforestation plots planted with 24...
Article
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In many savanna ecosystems worldwide, livestock share the landscape and its resources with wildlife. The nature of interactions between livestock and wildlife is a subject of considerable interest and speculation, yet little controlled experimental research has been carried out. Since 1995, we have been manipulating the presence and absence of catt...
Article
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Context Ecological edge effects are sensitive to landscape context, including matrix type and the presence of other nearby edges. In sub-Saharan Africa, temporary cattle corrals (bomas) develop into productive nutrient hotspots (glades) that attract diverse wildlife and persist for decades. Objectives Building on previous descriptive work, we exper...
Article
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Prescribed burning is used in tropical savannas to improve habitat conditions for domestic and wild herbivores, but its effects on the ecological interactions between these herbivore guilds have never been assessed experimentally. Understanding such effects will contribute towards more informed management of both guilds in landscapes where they sha...
Article
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Wild herbivores and livestock share the majority of rangelands worldwide, yet few controlled experiments have addressed their individual, additive, and interactive impacts on ecosystem function. While ungulate herbivores generally reduce standing biomass, their effects on aboveground net primary production (ANPP) can vary by spatial and temporal co...