Setting trees into pots in the greenhouse was fun, especially when their root system was as long as the legs of the researcher.

Benjamin Hafner: Split it – disentangling functional mechanisms in forest ecology research

Benjamin Hafner of Technische Universität München & Cornell University, discusses his work “Water potential gradient, root conduit size and root xylem hydraulic conductivity determine the extent of hydraulic redistribution in temperate trees” shortlisted for the 2020 Haldane Prize for Early Career Researchers and draws on how a lifelong love of nature led to a career in forestry research. I have always been fascinated by nature … Continue reading Benjamin Hafner: Split it – disentangling functional mechanisms in forest ecology research

Seraina Cappelli et Noémie Pichon sur l’expérience de PaNDiv, mai 2017. Crédit : Hugo Vincent

Noémie Pichon: La décomposition démêlée

Read this blog in English here Noémie A. Pichon, alors étudiante en doctorat dans le groupe d’Eric Allan, parle de son récent article « La décomposition démêlée : un test des multiples mécanismes par lesquels l’enrichissement en azote modifie la décomposition de la litière », le contexte de cet article et les futures directions de ce champ de recherche. Quel est le contexte de votre étude ? Les expériences … Continue reading Noémie Pichon: La décomposition démêlée

Author Dianye Zhang, Institute of Botany, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

Dianye Zhang: Nitrogen-induced changes in biodiversity and plant community composition affect soil respiration

Dr. Dianye Zhang, a postdoc from Prof. Yuanhe Yang’s Lab in the Institute of Botany, Chinese Academy of Sciences, discusses his recent paper “Changes in above-/below-ground biodiversity and plant functional composition mediate soil respiration response to nitrogen input” published in Functional Ecology. What is the background behind your paper? Intensified human activities accelerate the deposition of reactive nitrogen (N) into terrestrial ecosystems. Reactive N enrichment … Continue reading Dianye Zhang: Nitrogen-induced changes in biodiversity and plant community composition affect soil respiration

Author Alihan Katlav, Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment Western Sydney University, NSW, Australia

Alihan Katlav: Egg size matters for sex allocation in thrips

Alihan Katlav is currently a Ph.D. candidate at the Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment, Western Sydney University. Alihan is studying the evolution of sex allocation in haplodiploid thrips. Under supervision of Assoc. Prof. Markus Riegler and Prof. James Cook, Alihan’s Ph.D. research focuses on the mechanisms and constraints of sex allocation adjustment in Kelly’s citrus thrips – an important Australian-native pest of citrus which is … Continue reading Alihan Katlav: Egg size matters for sex allocation in thrips

Daphne Cortese visiting an anemonefish site in Moorea, French Polynesia (Photo by Marc Besson).

Daphne Cortese: Bleached anemones alter anemonefish physiology & behaviour

Daphne Cortese, PhD student at PSL Université Paris, Moorea, French Polynesia, explains the detrimental effects of anemone bleaching on the fish that depend on them in her recently accepted Functional Ecology paper, “Physiological and behavioural effects of anemone bleaching on symbiont anemonefish in the wild.” What’s your paper about? Our paper is about the cascading effect of bleaching on the physiology and behaviour of clownfish … Continue reading Daphne Cortese: Bleached anemones alter anemonefish physiology & behaviour

Mark Wilber

Mark Wilber: Resistance and tolerance of salamanders to an emerging fungal pathogen

Dr. Mark Wilber, Assistant Professor in the Department of Forestry, Wildlife, and Fisheries at the University of Tennessee, discusses his recently accepted article, “Putative resistance and tolerance mechanisms have little impact on disease progression for an emerging salamander pathogen”, describes his favourite part about being ecologist, and how he got into the field. What is the background behind your paper? Hosts can defend themselves against … Continue reading Mark Wilber: Resistance and tolerance of salamanders to an emerging fungal pathogen

Bushfire grounds near Bermagui in south-eastern Australia, viewed through a destroyed termite mound. Photos: F. Scarff, J. Lewin.

Fiona Scarff: Effect of plant hydraulic traits on flammability

In this new post Fiona Scarff, a former postdoc at Macquarie University, presents her work on the effect of plant hydraulic traits on flammability, highlights the importance of lab meeting for fostering research and discusses the importance of failure in science. Our paper is about how readily live plants can burn in wildfires. Plants dry out in the hot, dry, windy weather that accompanies the … Continue reading Fiona Scarff: Effect of plant hydraulic traits on flammability

Jitka Klimesova sorting biomass in field

Jitka Klimesova: why we should all care more about belowground plant organs

Jitka Klimesova serves as Senior Scientist at the Institute of Botany of the Czech Academy of Sciences in Třeboň and as Professor at Charles University in Prague. Her main interest is in functional morphology of clonal and regenerative organs of herbs. She is the main author of the only existing database of clonal and bud bank traits for an entire flora (CLO-PLA; Czech Republic), organizes … Continue reading Jitka Klimesova: why we should all care more about belowground plant organs

Louise S. Nørgaard

Louise S. Nørgaard: Energetics, population density and pathogen performance

Louise S. Nørgaard is currently working as a Research Fellow at the centre of Geometric Biology at Monash University, Melbourne. In this Insight, she talks about her recent publication in Functional Ecology, ‘Energetic scaling across different host densities and its consequences for pathogen proliferation’. About the paper What’s your paper about? Using the freshwater Daphnia magna and its gram-positive bacteria Pasteuria ramosa, we explore how … Continue reading Louise S. Nørgaard: Energetics, population density and pathogen performance

Author Lewis Halsey, with his 4-month old daughter, Charlotte. Photo by: Lewis Halsey

No quantification without calibration – estimating energy expenditure

Prof. Lewis Halsey, Environmental Physiologist in the Life Sciences Department at the University of Roehampton, discusses with us his recently accepted article, “Proxy problems: why a calibration is essential for interpreting quantified changes in energy expenditure from biologging data”, describes his research interests, and provides advice to fellow ecologists. About the Paper Every time an animal does anything, from moving around to reproducing to fighting … Continue reading No quantification without calibration – estimating energy expenditure