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The fate of seeds in dispersal through ungulates: costs and benefits to dry-fruited plants = Het lot van zaden bij verbreiding door hoefdieren: kosten en baten voor planten met droge vruchten
D'hondt, B. (2011). The fate of seeds in dispersal through ungulates: costs and benefits to dry-fruited plants = Het lot van zaden bij verbreiding door hoefdieren: kosten en baten voor planten met droge vruchten. PhD Thesis. Universiteit Gent, Faculteit Wetenschappen: Gent. ISBN 978-94-9069-570-5. 215 pp.

Thesis info:

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Document type: Dissertation

Keywords
    Dispersal phenomena; Grazing; Seeds

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Abstract
    Large herbivorous mammals abundantly disperse seeds through ingestion and subsequent excretion (endozoochory). Although a widely acknowledged means of dispersal, we still lack a good understanding of its ecological consequences for seeds, let alone of any consequences for plant evolution. This thesis examines several aspects of the fate of seeds from dry-fruited grassland plants that become dispersed by grazing ungulates. Topics include the (i) spatial patterns of seed deposition in heterogeneous landscapes, (ii) secondary seed dispersal by dung beetles, (iii) functional traits in surviving ingestion and digestion (iv) the evolvability of these traits, and (v) a synthesis of the proximate and ultimate processes that act in endozoochory.

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