Effects of camel grazing on density and species diversity of seedling emergence in the Dubai (UAE) inland desert

Source of Publication

Journal of Arid Environments


Germination in the arid rangelands of the UAE occurs as an 'event' following a mid-winter to spring rainfall. A fence line study of germination events was conducted in 2005 and 2006 to identify the response to differential grazing regimes. Fifty-six 1 m2 seedling plots were destructively sampled each season. Heavy grazing reduced species richness and diversity without significantly reducing seedling density. Both annual and perennial species were impacted, though the reduction in richness of annual species was less pronounced than the natural variation among locations. Direct grazing of seedlings is limited to a few weeks, due to the short annual plant life span. Reduction of perennial seedling density and species richness was likely caused by the reduced size of adult plants under grazing. Recruitment of perennial species could be affected by heavy grazing, leading to loss of habitat, though under moderate grazing levels this could easily be compensated by greater survival. © 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Document Type


First Page


Last Page


Publication Date




Author First name, Last name, Institution

D. J. Gallacher, Zayed University
J. P. Hill, Zayed University