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Uruguay´s highly complex and biologically diversified climax vegetation consists of prairie grasslands in which lawn and creeping grass varieties prevail. These comprise overall approximately 2,500 different species, distributed in over 80 families, including more than 400 species from the graminaceae family. Despite the impact of grazing by cattle, sheep and horses over the past three centuries, the native grassland has shown a remarkable capacity to adapt and retain its biological and economic sustainability. In the past, the prairies formed the principal pillar of Uruguay’s economic development as well as of its social and political history. Even today, native pasture still accounts for over 80% of land use and remains as important as ever for Uruguay’s export trade (meat, wool, leather and dairy).

La compleja biodiversidad de la vegetación de Uruguay comprende principalmente a especies de pradera en las cuales dominan los pastos y plantas rastreras. Existen alrededor de 2,500 especies distribuídas en más de 80 familias entre las que se incluyen 400 especies de la familia de las gramíneas. Pese al impacto del ganado en el transcurso de los tres últimos siglos, la pradera nativa ha demostrado una sorprendente capacidad para adaptarse, reteniendo su sustentabilidad biológica y económica. En el pasado las praderas constituían el pilar principal del desarrollo económico del país, así como de historia social y política. Aún hoy las pasturas nativas representan el 80% de la tierra y son de vital importancia para la exportación de carne, lana, cueros y lácteos.

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