African landscapes may become very different places if rhinos aren’t there to diversify plant life and create prime grazing spots for other animals
Some large animals influence their surroundings more than others. Elephants
are known as ecosystem engineers for their tendency to push over trees and stomp shrubby areas in the savannah into submission.
African rhinos, it turns out, also seem to be a keystone species. According to a recent study
published by Scandinavian and South African researchers in the Journal of Ecology
, rhinos maintain the diverse African grasslands on which countless other species depend.