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Citation. Reichman, O. J.; Smith, S. C. 1985. Impact of pocket gopher burrows on overlying vegetation. Journal of Mammalogy 66(4):720-725. [1125 LTERCC]
Abstract. The impact of pocket gopher burrows on overlying vegetation was examined by analysis of plant samples taken from quadrats directly over active and vacant Geomys bursarius burrows, adjacent controls, and samples from the surrounding fields at sites in Kansas and Minnesota. The pocket gophers burrowed in that portion of the field which exhibited the greatest plant biomass. The biomass of plants (roots, stems, and both) directly over active burrows was, however, reduced by over one-third. The depletion was somewhat less over old, vacant burrows. The dominant forb species, with a tap root, was significantly more affected than the dominant grass, with a diffuse root system.
Keywords. pocket gopher, Geomys bursarius, vegetation impact