Passive Acoustic Monitoring provides a fresh perspective on fundamental ecological questions

Samuel R.P-J. Ross, Darren P. O’Connell, Jessica L. Deichmann, Camille Desjonquères, Amandine Gasc, Jennifer N. Phillips, Sarab S. Sethi, Connor M. Wood, Zuzana Burivalova This is a plain language summary of a Functional Ecology review article which can be found here. From a bleary-eyed dawn chorus, to magnificent symphonies of whale song, to deafening choruses of tropical insects, the natural world is awash with the … Continue reading Passive Acoustic Monitoring provides a fresh perspective on fundamental ecological questions

Predicted extinctions target the planet’s most unique bird species

Jarome R. Ali, Benjamin W. Blonder, Alex L. Pigot, Joseph A. Tobias This is a plain language summary of a Functional Ecology research article which can be found here. Extinction rates are projected to increase worldwide, but it remains unclear how this loss of biodiversity might affect the way ecosystems function. Since ecological processes are hard to quantify at global scales, morphological traits can provide … Continue reading Predicted extinctions target the planet’s most unique bird species

Multidimensional change of biodiversity and ecosystem functions

Guiyao Zhou, Manuel Esteban Lucas-Borja, Shengen Liu, Hang-Wei Hu, Ji-Zheng He, Xinxin Wang, Zheng Jiang, Xuhui Zhou, Manuel Delgado-Baquerizo This is a plain language summary of a Functional Ecology research article which can be found here. Mediterranean forests are one of the most important global hotspots of biodiversity, and are critical for supporting ecosystem function and climate change mitigation. Over the past decades, these forests … Continue reading Multidimensional change of biodiversity and ecosystem functions

Environmental filtering of macroinvertebrate traits influences ecosystem functioning in a large river floodplain

Natalie K. Rideout, Zacchaeus G. Compson, Wendy A. Monk, Meghann R. Bruce, Mehrdad Hajibabaei, Teresita M. Porter, Michael T.G. Wright, Donald J. Baird This is a plain language summary of a Functional Ecology research article which can be found here. As we enter the Anthropocene, reversing biodiversity loss will require a more inclusive view of nature: to conserve ‘charismatic megafauna’, we must also be mindful … Continue reading Environmental filtering of macroinvertebrate traits influences ecosystem functioning in a large river floodplain

The impact of invasive plants on tropical plant-seed disperser interactions varies with fruiting season

Alba Costa, Ruben Heleno, Yanick Dufrene, Eleanor Huckle, Ronny Gabriel, Xavier Harrison, Dana G. Schabo, Nina Farwig, Christopher N. Kaiser-Bunbury This is a plain language summary of a Functional Ecology research article which can be found here. The interactions between plants and the animals that disperse their seeds, such as birds and reptiles, can be modified by the presence of invasive non-native plant species and, … Continue reading The impact of invasive plants on tropical plant-seed disperser interactions varies with fruiting season

Conserving the Ecological Diversity of Crocodylians

Phoebe Griffith, Jeffrey W. Lang, Samuel T. Turvey, Rikki Gumbs This is a plain language summary of a Functional Ecology research article that can be found here. Crocodylians have surprisingly diverse ecological roles, from the huge, highly aquatic and mostly fish-eating gharial to the tiny African dwarf crocodiles which can catch prey on land below the rainforest canopy. Sadly, over half of all crocodylians are … Continue reading Conserving the Ecological Diversity of Crocodylians

Family feud? Birds show no apparent cost to coexisting with close relatives

Nicholas M. A. Crouch, David Jablonski This is a plain language summary of a Functional Ecology research article which can be found here. It is a classic observation that biodiversity – defined as the number of species in a location – varies dramatically across the globe. Researchers have long thought that increasing species richness in a location must impact the ecology of those species to … Continue reading Family feud? Birds show no apparent cost to coexisting with close relatives

Flower color and flowering time determine the organization of diverse flowering plant communities and how they interact with pollinators

Cristopher Albor, Tia-Lynn Ashman, Amber Stanley, Carlos Martel, Gerardo Arceo-Gómez This is a plain language summary of a Functional Ecology research article that can be found here. Understanding how natural communities are organized, that is, why some species are able to co-exist while others do not, is central for predicting how biodiversity may be affected by human disturbances. Specifically, flowering plant communities can be organized … Continue reading Flower color and flowering time determine the organization of diverse flowering plant communities and how they interact with pollinators

Restoring ecosystem health requires not just more plants, or the right type of plants, but both

Kathleen R. Balazs, Seth M. Munson, Bradley J. Butterfield This is a plain language summary of a Functional Ecology research article which can be found here. Restoring degraded ecosystems is a massive environmental challenge. Establishing the right types of plants is often considered critical to restoring soil health, suppressing weeds, and producing biomass for forage and wildlife. However, biomass might also play a supporting role … Continue reading Restoring ecosystem health requires not just more plants, or the right type of plants, but both

How agriculture affects the productivity of invertebrate stream communities

Romy Wild, Björn Gücker, Markus Weitere, Mario Brauns This is a plain language summary of a Functional Ecology research article that can be found here. Next to climate change, biodiversity loss has been repeatedly listed as one of the greatest threats for this planet. Particularly, the dramatic loss of insect species has been on public display lately. Aquatic habitats, where many insects spend parts or … Continue reading How agriculture affects the productivity of invertebrate stream communities