Program to explore how bison helps restore prairies
The Jefferson County Conservation Board will present “Bison Ecology: Restoring a Keystone Species to the Tallgrass Prairie” at 10 a.m. Saturday at the Fairfield Public Library.
Pete Eyheralde, a former naturalist for the Mahaska County Conservation Board, will present the program. He has been involved in bison ranching in southern Iowa for the last 17 years and is currently pursuing a doctorate degree at Iowa State University exploring the role of bison as seed dispersal agents in tallgrass prairies.
Participants will learn about the natural history of bison in the eastern tallgrass prairie and how the loss of the mega-herbivores has impacted the ecology of the remaining tallgrass prairies.
Eyheralde will share findings from the research being done in Iowa and how the information could lead to new techniques for grassland management, increasing biodiversity in prairie reconstructions.