Community Ecology

, Volume 8, Issue 1, pp 67–73 | Cite as

The montane grasslands of the Western Ghats, India: Community ecology and conservation

  • S. M. Thomas
  • M. W. PalmerEmail author


The montane (shola) grasslands of Western Ghats, South India are a component of a landscape mosaic including the better-studied shola forests. The conservation of the grasslands depends upon understanding their ecology. This review compiles available information and aims to evaluate the conservation potential of these grasslands. Most studies on these grasslands are descriptive in nature. There is little information regarding habitat heterogeneity, landscape configuration, natural disturbance, grazing and productivity in maintaining the grasslands. Succession is poorly understood because of the short-term nature of most studies. Human activities have historically influenced these grasslands and will continue to do so in more intensive manner. Threats to these grasslands include habitat loss, fragmentation, fires, and invasive species.


Community Conservation India Montane grasslands Species richness Succession Western Ghats 


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Botany DepartmentOklahoma State UniversityStillwaterUSA

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