Professor Xavier Lambin (University of Aberdeen), project leader of ECOCYCLES project, is the author of a scientific report published in Science magazine (Vol. 340 no. 6128 pp. 63-66, April 5). This project funded under BiodivERsA 2008 Call, brings together scientists from Scotland, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Germany, Poland and France.
The report focuses on a dramatic change in the fluctuations of vole numbers observed across Europe. The “flattening” in population numbers has serious implications for other species which feed on the small grass-eating rodents.
“Smaller herbivores like voles have population cycles which have a boom or bust dynamic – there used to be times of plenty of the animals and times of scarcity, as part of natural processes.”
“However evidence has emerged in recent years of a greater uniformity in vole abundance between years. the outbreaks are not longer as marked. Like a weakening heart, the beat of the cycle is becoming fainter and this will profoundly affect many other species in ecosystems.”
Link to the paper published in Science magazine HERE
More details an press release here
ECOCYCLES website: http://ecocycles-europe.org/