Wetland seed dispersal by white-tailed deer
Understanding the dispersal of wetland plants is important to the conservation of species in patchy or isolated wetland environments. In a recent study published in AoB PLANTS, Flaherty et al. explored the potential for wetland seed dispersal by white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) in a high-elevation wetland complex in Canaan Valley, West Virginia, USA, by collecting and germinating deer feces in a controlled environment. Their results suggest that seed dispersal by large herbivores may be a more prevalent mechanism for wetland plants than previously recognized. This mechanism allows for the potential for long-distance dispersal over upland habitat from isolated wetland environments.