Heat waves interfere with bumble bees’ ability to gather food and pollinate an important crop

Jeremy A. Hemberger, Nick M. Rosenberger, Neal M. Williams This is a plain language summary of a Functional Ecology research article which can be found here. It’s no secret that the planet is getting warmer. Just this year, there have been periods of extremely hot temperatures, with records broken in both North America and Europe. Periods of extreme temperatures impact not just our comfort, but … Continue reading Heat waves interfere with bumble bees’ ability to gather food and pollinate an important crop

Water stress reduces flower and seed production in wild mustard plants

Rebecca J. Höfer, Tina Lindner, Manfred Ayasse, Jonas Kuppler This is a plain language summary of a Functional Ecology research article which can be found here. Climate change will lead to reduced precipitation, which can cause a water deficit in the soil, leading to water stress in plants. It is known that water stress in plants alters floral characteristics such as morphology, phenology or floral … Continue reading Water stress reduces flower and seed production in wild mustard plants

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

The future of Alpine meadows: Can we predict winners and losers in a warmer climate?

Kristiina Visakorpi, Sebastián Block, Loïc Pellissier, Jonathan M. Levine, Jake Alexander This is a plain language summary of a Functional Ecology research article which can be found here. Plant species growing at high altitudes have adapted to cooler temperatures, shorter summers and less competition from the surrounding vegetation. With climate change, the high elevation environment will increasingly resemble that found at lower elevations today: temperatures … Continue reading The future of Alpine meadows: Can we predict winners and losers in a warmer climate?

Maladaptation versus smart acclimation to expected climate change in wooded pasture grasses

Pierre Vollenweider, Géraldine Hildbrand, Davide De Masi, Konstantin Gavazov, Vivian Zufferey, Alexandre Buttler, Georg von Arx This is a plain language summary of a Functional Ecology research article which can be found here. Mountain grasslands are characterized by high biodiversity, low management intensity and plant species adapted to cool and moist climate conditions. With climate warming, however, they may undergo losses in biodiversity. Investigating the … Continue reading Maladaptation versus smart acclimation to expected climate change in wooded pasture grasses

The effects of temperature can influence the movement of green algae individuals across multiple generations

Hannah S. Meier, Isaac J. Schuman, Tamara J. Layden, Anna Ritz, Colin T. Kremer, Samuel B. Fey This is a plain language summary of a Functional Ecology research article which can be found here. The goal of this project was to gain a better understanding of how the environmental conditions experienced by past generations influences an individual’s behaviour in their current environment. Behaviour is important … Continue reading The effects of temperature can influence the movement of green algae individuals across multiple generations

Combining information from multiple natural history collections can reveal how the relationships between plants and pollinators have changed through time

Demetra Rakosy, Tia-Lynn Ashman, Amber Stanley, Leana Zoller, Tiffany M. Knight This is a plain language summary of a Functional Ecology perspective article which can be found here. Plants and animals form interdependent partnerships, which ensure both the reproduction of over 87% of all plants on earth and food resources for most pollinator populations. They are also critical for human food production. These partnerships between … Continue reading Combining information from multiple natural history collections can reveal how the relationships between plants and pollinators have changed through time

Changing plant species composition and richness benefit soil carbon sequestration under climate warming

Yingjie Yan, Shuli Niu, Yicheng He, Song Wang, Lei Song, Jinlong Peng, Xinli Chen, Quan Quan, Cheng Meng, Qingping Zhou, Jinsong Wang This is a plain language summary of a Functional Ecology research article which can be found here. Soils store the majority of the Earth’s terrestrial ecosystem carbon (C), which is approximately three times larger than the amount of C in the atmosphere. Thus, … Continue reading Changing plant species composition and richness benefit soil carbon sequestration under climate warming

Wildfire shapes future forests through impacts on root-associated fungi

Rebecca E. Hewitt, Nicola J. Day, M. Rae DeVan, D. Lee Taylor This is a plain language summary of a Functional Ecology review article which can be found here. In the boreal forest wildfire activity is increasing with strong effects on both the types of forests that regenerate and on ecosystem function. Wildfires alter the soil environment and the vegetation, which are both key to … Continue reading Wildfire shapes future forests through impacts on root-associated fungi

Temperature controls the speed of life

Caroline Greiser, Loke von Schmalensee, Olle Lindestad, Karl Gotthard, Philipp Lehmann This is a plain language summary of a Functional Ecology research article which can be found here. Insects develop faster when it is warmer, but at very high temperatures development drastically slows down again. This nonlinear response to temperature makes it difficult to predict if an insect will develop on average rapidly or slowly … Continue reading Temperature controls the speed of life