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The Center for Native Grasslands Management

Title: Insect Communities, Grasses, and Grasslands
Year: 1995
Author(s): Tscharntke, T., Greiler, H. J.
Source Title: Annual Review of Entomology
Source Type: Journal
pages: 535-558
Original Publication: http://  
Abstract: Grasses lack the variety of plant architectures and secondary compounds found in dicotyledons, but insect diversity is not reduced. This review characterizes special features of grasses and grasslands acid presents analyses of their insect communities that focus on differences between annual and perennial grasses, small and long grass species, biotypes of different habitat types, grasses grown from wild and commercial seeds, ectophages and endophages, and below- and aboveground herbivory. Insect food webs are affected by management of grasslands such as cutting, grazing, and burning, by successional age, by patchy mosaics in grasslands, and by insect mass outbreaks. Morphology and physiology of grasses promote tolerance to both drought and herbivory. Direct and indirect effects of grazing of both mammals and insects have presumably been important in grass evolution.