Wild ungulates are known to be keystone species and forest engineers as they can modify the environment through browsing, trampling and fraying. However, on the northern hemishphere ungulates are expanding in range and density due to abondment of agricultural fields, reduced competetion and absence of predators, creating a great pressure on natural systems.
Through a series of experiments and the use of camera traps, laser technology and animal exclosures, we aim to understand the effects of wild ungulates on forest structure, composition and functioning. To achieve this, we are actively working across the Veluwe region with different stakeholders.
Our results are essential for designing accurate and effective policies that help conserve temperate forests and its biodiversity.