• Food Relations of Wild Free-Roaming Horses to Livestock and Big Game, Red Desert, Wyoming

      Olsen, F. W.; Hansen, R. M. (Society for Range Management, 1977-01-01)
      The seasonal foods selected by wild horses, cattle, elk, domestic sheep, and antelope on the Red Desert in southwestern Wyoming were determined by microscopic inspection of fecal material. A large percentage of the diets of wild horses, cattle, and elk were the same species of grasses and sedges. Wheatgrass and needlegrass each made up 11 to 46% of the average annual diets of the herbivores studied except antelope. Sagebrush was the major food in antelope diets regardless of season. Saltbush was an important food in each herbivore's seasonal diet and was the major food of domestic sheep each season except summer. Each herbivore species ate a variety of plants each season, but the majority of the diet within a season usually consisted of fewer than six major plant species.