A grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture is going to help researchers develop strategies for making rangelands more resilient to drought. Associate professor of ecology in the Department of Plant Sciences at UC Davis, Jennifer Funk has received a total of $481,274 to support the project. As environmental conditions continue to get warmer and drier, rangelands are being negatively impacted. The underlying purpose of the research is to evaluate potential approaches for making rangelands more resilient to drought.
“The goal of this project really is to think more broadly about developing a model to our framework for thinking about drought tolerance in rangelands. Then trying to use these functional traits to try to predict which species or populations are going to be drought tolerant,” Funk noted. “The idea is that we can go into a regional flora, look at the characteristics of all these different species, and choose species that we know are going to be really great to plant if rangelands get hotter and drier in the future.”
Listen to the radio report below.