Two of the most pervasive human impacts on ecosystems are alteration of global nutrient budgets and changes in the abundance and identity of consumers. In spite of the global impacts of these human activities, there have been no globally coordinated experiments to quantify the general impacts on ecological systems. The Nutrient Network (NutNet) is a grassroots, global research effort to address these questions within a coordinated research network comprised of more than 130 grassland sites worldwide. In the Netherlands, NIOO-KNAW is running a NutNet site in a semi-natural grassland on the Veluwe. This experiment consists of a full-factorial design crossing nutrient addition and vertebrate herbivore grazing and has five independent replicates. In addition to the NutNet design we have specific treatments to untangle impacts of wild mammals (e.g. wild boar) on plant communities and soil properties. Annual measurement on plant community development are collected and several add-on projects are running on the site focussing on invertebrate herbivory and soil processes.
Soil, plants, (vertebrate) herbivores, fertilization, nutrient addition, grazing, grassland management
Running period (guaranteed funding)
2017 – 2027 (potentially longer)
Equipment / facilities
A full-factorial randomised block experiment with five replicates crossing NPK addition and vertebrate grazing treatments
Management of local data is conducted by Ciska Veen and Liesbeth Bakker. Data are submitted to NutNet headquartes every year, where a global database is maintained by a data manager. The database contains data on plant community composition, plant biomass production and soil properties. Data are accessible for NutNet members. Access can be applied for via https://nutnet.org/.
Conditions for access
Scientists interested to conduct experiments within the NIOO-NutNet site can propose add-on projects to Ciska Veen or Liesbeth Bakker. For participation in the global NutNet network, please check: https://nutnet.org/guidelines.