Blog Special Issue: Early Career Researchers (Part 3)

Biodiversity and plant functional traits Connor Fitzpatrick’s video podcast: Phylogenetic relatedness, phenotypic similarity and plant–soil feedbacks Connor is a plant ecologist who got his PhD in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Toronto. He studies the ecological and evolutionary importance of interactions between plants and soil and focuses on how variation within and among plant…

Blog Special Issue: Early Career Researchers (Part 2)

Global changes in terrestrial and marine ecosystems Lucia Fuchslueger’s video podcast: Drought history affects plant and microbial C turnover after a subsequent drought event Lucia Fuchslueger received her PhD from the University of Vienna (supervised by Andreas Richter and Michael Bahn). Lucia is currently a postdoc at Antwerpen University investigating how soil microbes mediate processes involved in organic matter…

Happy World Soil Day 2019

Happy #WorldSoilDay! In 2013, in an effort to raise global awareness of the critical role of soils in the natural system and in human wellbeing, the 68th General Assembly of the United Nations designated December 5th as World Soil Day. And in fact, soil is more than just critical – 95% of our food depends on it. The theme for…

Blog Special Issue: Early Career Researchers (Part 1)

Competition, plant enemies and defense mechanisms Felipe Albornoz’s video podcast: Native soilborne pathogens equalize differences in competitive ability between plants of contrasting nutrient-acquisition strategies Felipe Albornoz did his PhD at The University of Western Australia where he worked on mycorrhizal fungi in a 2 million years chronosequence. He studied how pedogenesis and plant communities influenced ectomycorrhizal…

Model fitting in ecology: trade-offs between complexity and generality

Journal of Ecology recently published new research article by Clark et al. Predicting species abundances in a grassland biodiversity experiment: Trade‐offs between model complexity and generality Author Adam Clark discusses the paper in more detail and explores the trade‐off between bias and variance when modelling ecological systems. It is common knowledge that increasing the number of…

Green turtle grazing and seagrass carbon capture across Caribbean meadows

Journal of Ecology recently published an exciting new research paper by Johnson et al. “Seagrass ecosystem metabolic carbon capture in response to green turtle grazing across Caribbean meadows.” Author Robert Johnson discusses this research in more detail and presents further insights into how green turtle grazing affects carbon dynamics, within seagrass ecosystems. Green turtle abundance is…

Digging deeper to illuminate the black box!

Last week I attended the 2-day New Phytologist symposium on ‘Above- and below-ground Biodiversity for Sustainable Ecosystems‘ that was organised by Associate Editor Marcel Van Der Heijden at Agroscope (Reckenholz, Switzerland) on behalf of the BiodivERsA “#DiggingDeeper” project. I personally loved the symposium, not only because of the great line-up of speakers and because it…

Impact of belowground biomass responses on the biodiversity-ecosystem functioning relationship

In this new video podcast, Marc-Olivier Martin-Guay highlights the role of belowground responses in biodiversity-ecosystem functioning relationship, asking three main questions: does adding below-ground biomass change diversity effect estimations? Do species shift their biomass allocation strategies within mixtures? Do we interpret correctly the origins of these diversity effects when ignoring below-ground biomass? Have a look at the…

How do tree fern understories impact conifer–angiosperm forest dynamics?

Brock et al. recently published their new article “The hare, tortoise and crocodile revisited: Tree fern facilitation of conifer persistence and angiosperm growth in simulated forests” in Journal of Ecology. Author James Brock discusses this research in more detail and explains how tree fern understories are important determinants of forest structure. Establishing how conifers compete…