Effects of Cattle Grazing Intensity on Soil Nematode Communities in Wet Meadow Rangelands
Rangelands store carbon, regulate water, and conserve biodiversity. This research will study the effect of cattle grazing on wet meadow rangelands and their soils. Specifically, this project will measure the effect of changes in plants on soil nematodes. Soil nematodes are important in the cycling of nutrients and carbon and help sustain soil health. We will use surveys of soil nematodes to measure the changing function of soil food webs following grazing. Using a long-term grazing experiment in a wet meadow rangeland in Manitoba, we will test how communities of nematodes change following grazing and what these changes mean for the function of rangeland soils. Findings from this research will help with the sustainable management and conservation of wet meadow rangelands in western Canada.