Podcast Ep. 110: Grassland Heterogeneity with Biologist Luke Zilverberg

3f6ed9cc-35c1-4332-95ed-4a8da2e4bc18 Grasslands are inherently dynamic in space and time, evolving with frequent disturbance from fire and herbivores (bison, cattle, etc.). As a consequence of human actions, many remaining grasslands have become homogenous, which has led to biodiversity loss and decreased ecological services.  Enter the concept of grassland heterogeneity.

Host Bob St.Pierre is in over his head for a fun master’s level conversation about grassland diversity and the concept of “heterogeneity” with Luke Zilverberg, a Pheasants Forever biologist.  And it all leads back to better habitat and more birds to chase with a good dog. 

Episode Highlights:
  • Zilverberg talks about hunting and fishing during his college years at South Dakota State University, while squeezing in his master’s in biology which focused on this concept of heterogeneity.  
  • The guys talk about the biological importance of grassland diversity for pheasants and quail, then detail how prescribed fire and livestock grazing can be used to maximize the benefits for wildlife, soil, and water quality.