Grassy biomes span ~40% of the global land surface. Grasslands, savannas and shrublands are critical to livelihoods, economics, biodiversity and Earth System functioning. Across grassy biomes globally, the composition, structure and biomass of the ground layer vary as a product of antecedent rainfall, time of year, local conditions, disturbance and the history of human use. Appropriate management in the context of fire, animals and human use requires an understanding of the composition, structure and functioning of the ground layer. These data are not always collected despite the ground layer and its constituent grasses and forbs, driving processes central to shaping the dynamics of these ecosystems. Lack of consistency in data stems from sites of varied size and organisation, and where plots variably record composition limiting the comparability and utility of data from different collection efforts.

The Global Grassy Group (GGG) gathers ecologists and biologists aiming to standardise and improve vegetation sampling in grassy biomes. On this website, you can find our suggested sampling protocols, resources needed for undertaking fieldwork, GGG datasets (and publications that used these data), and much more.

If you would like to contribute your data to GGG, please read our participation guide and contact us.

To find out more about savannas and grasslands, visit the Open Ecosystem Network.

Map of GGG field sites

We have collected species composition data in 7000+ plots across 400+ sites so far.