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Effects of Climate and its Change on Phylogenetic, Functional and Species Diversity in Swiss Grasslands Communities

English title Effects of Climate and its Change on Phylogenetic, Functional and Species Diversity in Swiss Grasslands Communities
Applicant Zimmermann Niklaus
Number 149508
Funding scheme Project funding (Div. I-III)
Research institution Swiss Federal Research Inst. WSL Direktion
Institution of higher education Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research - WSL
Main discipline Ecology
Start/End 01.01.2014 - 30.06.2017
Approved amount 278'551.00
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All Disciplines (3)

Discipline
Ecology
Environmental Research
Botany

Keywords (9)

species conservation; range shifts; functional diversity; climate change; turnover; grassland communities; beta-diversity; phylogenetic diversity; species diversity

Lay Summary (German)

Lead
Im Projekt ECCO.DIV werden die Einflüsse von abiotischen Faktoren (Klima, Feuchtigkeit, etc.) und von Klimawandel auf unterschiedliche Diversitäts-Merkmale (Artenvielfalt, funktionale und phylogenetische Vielfalt) in Grasländern untersucht. Dabei wird untersucht, wie sich Vielfalt in Grasland-Fläche strukturiert, aber insbes. auch, wie sich diese Vielfalt entlang von wichtigen Gradienten wie Temperatur oder Feuchtigkeit ändert. Dies soll zu neuen theoretischen Erkenntnissen führen.
Lay summary

Inhalt des Forschungsprojekts

Der Klimawandel beschleunigt sich und beeinflusst in zunehmendem Masse Arten und Ökosysteme. Dabei stellt sich die Frage, wie stark dieser globale Wandel die geographische Verbreitung der Arten und die Struktur der Vegetation ändert. Zudem interessiert, wie sehr dadurch das Vermächtnis der Evolution und die funktionelle Vielfalt gefährdet sind. Mit unserem Projekt untersuchen wir nicht nur die traditionell stark untersuchte Artenvielfalt, sondern zusätzlich funktionelle Vielfalt (steht für Anpassung von Arten an Umweltbedingungen) und phylogenetische Vielfalt (steht für evolutive Abstammung und Diversifizierung). Unser Ziel besteht darin, neue Theorie-Ansätze für die Zusammenhänge unterschiedlicher Diversitäts-Merkmale sowohl unter konstanten, als auch sich ändernden Bedingungen zu suchen. Auf der Basis unserer Resultate sollen schliesslich bestehende Massnahmen zum Schutz von Biodiversität untersucht und hinterfragt werden.

 

Wissenschaftlicher und gesellschaftlicher Kontext des Forschungsprojekts

Unsere Arbeit wird neue und wichtige Informationen und Theorie-Ansätze liefern, wie Klima und Umwelt unterschiedliche Merkmale der Biodiversität beeinflussen und wie Diversität in Grasländern und entlang von Umweltgradienten strukturiert ist. Zudem untersuchen wir, ob bestehende Massnahmen zum Schutz der Biodiversität in der Schweiz diese Diversität ganzheitlich oder nur aus dem Blickwinkel der Arten schützen und ob diese Schutzziele unter geänderten Klimabedingungen gefährdet sind. Wir werden auf der Basis unserer Resultate Vorschläge erarbeiten, wo Lücken im Schutzkonzept bestehen, und wie die generellen Schutzziele besser erreicht werden können.

Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 02.12.2013

Responsible applicant and co-applicants

Employees

Name Institute

Publications

Publication
Arid environments select for larger seeds in pines (Pinus spp.)
Salazar-Tortosa Diego, Castro Jorge, Saladin Bianca, Zimmermann Niklaus E., Rubio De Casas Rafael (2020), Arid environments select for larger seeds in pines (Pinus spp.), in Evolutionary Ecology, 34(1), 11-26.
Environment and evolutionary history shape phylogenetic turnover in European tetrapods
Saladin Bianca, Thuiller Wilfried, Graham Catherine H., Lavergne Sébastien, Maiorano Luigi, Salamin Nicolas, Zimmermann Niklaus E. (2019), Environment and evolutionary history shape phylogenetic turnover in European tetrapods, in Nature Communications, 10(1), 249.
The productivity-biodiversity relationship varies across diversity dimensions
Brun Philipp, Zimmermann Niklaus E., Graham Catherine H., Lavergne Sébastien, Pellissier Loïc, Münkemüller Tamara, Thuiller Wilfried (2019), The productivity-biodiversity relationship varies across diversity dimensions, in Nature Communications, 10(1), 5691-5691.
The evolution of seed dispersal is associated with environmental heterogeneity in Pinus
Salazar-Tortosa Diego, Saladin Bianca, Zimmermann Niklaus E., Castro Jorge, Rubio de Casas Rafael (2019), The evolution of seed dispersal is associated with environmental heterogeneity in Pinus, in Perspectives in Plant Ecology, Evolution and Systematics, 41, 125464-125464.
Of niches and distributions: range size increases with niche breadth both globally and regionally but regional estimates poorly relate to global estimates
Kambach Stephan, Lenoir Jonathan, Decocq Guillaume, Welk Erik, Seidler Gunnar, Dullinger Stefan, Gégout Jean-Claude, Guisan Antoine, Pauli Harald, Svenning Jens-Christian, Vittoz Pascal, Wohlgemuth Thomas, Zimmermann Niklaus E., Bruelheide Helge (2019), Of niches and distributions: range size increases with niche breadth both globally and regionally but regional estimates poorly relate to global estimates, in Ecography, 42(3), 467-477.
Long-distance migratory birds threatened by multiple independent risks from global change
Zurell Damaris, Graham Catherine H., Gallien Laure, Thuiller Wilfried, Zimmermann Niklaus E. (2018), Long-distance migratory birds threatened by multiple independent risks from global change, in Nature Climate Change, 8(11), 992-996.
Do long-distance migratory birds track their niche through seasons?
Zurell Damaris, Gallien Laure, Graham Catherine H., Zimmermann Niklaus E. (2018), Do long-distance migratory birds track their niche through seasons?, in Journal of Biogeography, 45(7), 1459-1468.
Comparing spatial diversification and meta-population models in the Indo-Australian Archipelago
Chalmandrier Loïc, Albouy Camille, Descombes Patrice, Sandel Brody, Faurby Soren, Svenning Jens-Christian, Zimmermann Niklaus E., Pellissier Loïc (2018), Comparing spatial diversification and meta-population models in the Indo-Australian Archipelago, in Royal Society Open Science, 5(3), 171366-171366.
Frequency and intensity of facilitation reveal opposing patterns along a stress gradient
Gallien Laure, Zurell Damaris, Zimmermann Niklaus E. (2018), Frequency and intensity of facilitation reveal opposing patterns along a stress gradient, in Ecology and Evolution, 8(4), 2171-2181.
Comparing species interaction networks along environmental gradientsNetworks along environmental gradients
Pellissier Loïc, Albouy Camille, Bascompte Jordi, Farwig Nina, Graham Catherine, Loreau Michel, Maglianesi Maria Alejandra, Melián Carlos J., Pitteloud Camille, Roslin Tomas, Rohr Rudolf, Saavedra Serguei, Thuiller Wilfried, Woodward Guy, Zimmermann Niklaus E., Gravel Dominique (2018), Comparing species interaction networks along environmental gradientsNetworks along environmental gradients, in Biological Reviews, 93, 785-800.
The effects of intransitive competition on coexistence
Gallien Laure, Zimmermann Niklaus E., Levine Jonathan M., Adler Peter B. (2017), The effects of intransitive competition on coexistence, in Ecology Letters, (7), 791-800.
Invasive plants threaten the least mobile butterflies in Switzerland
Gallien Laure, Altermatt Florian, Wiemers Martin, Schweiger Oliver, Zimmermann Niklaus E. (2017), Invasive plants threaten the least mobile butterflies in Switzerland, in Diversity and Distributions, (2), 185-195.
Assessing vulnerability of two Mediterranean conifers to support genetic conservation management in the face of climate change
Serra-Varela María Jesús, Alía Ricardo, Daniels Rose Ruiz, Zimmermann Niklaus E., Gonzalo-Jiménez Julián, Grivet Delphine (2017), Assessing vulnerability of two Mediterranean conifers to support genetic conservation management in the face of climate change, in Diversity and Distributions, 23(5), 507-516.
Fossils matter: improved estimates of divergence times in Pinus reveal older diversification
Saladin Bianca, Leslie Andrew B., Wüest Rafael O., Litsios Glenn, Conti Elena, Salamin Nicolas, Zimmermann Niklaus E. (2017), Fossils matter: improved estimates of divergence times in Pinus reveal older diversification, in BMC Evolutionary Biology, 17, 95.
Effects of functional traits on the prediction accuracy of species richness models
Zurell Damaris, Zimmermann Niklaus E., Sattler Thomas, Nobis Michael P., Schröder Boris (2016), Effects of functional traits on the prediction accuracy of species richness models, in Diversity and Distributions, 22, 905-917.
Benchmarking novel approaches for modelling species range dynamics
Zurell Damaris, Thuiller Wilfried, Pagel Jörn, Cabral Juliano S., Münkemüller Tamara, Gravel Dominique, Dullinger Stefan, Normand Signe, Schiffers Katja H., Moore Kara A., Zimmermann Niklaus E. (2016), Benchmarking novel approaches for modelling species range dynamics, in Global Change Biology, 22(8), 2651-2664.
Does the legacy of historical biogeography shape current invasiveness in pines?
Gallien Laure, Saladin Bianca, Boucher Florian C., Richardson David M., Zimmermann Niklaus E. (2016), Does the legacy of historical biogeography shape current invasiveness in pines?, in NEW PHYTOLOGIST, 209(3), 1096-1105.

Collaboration

Group / person Country
Types of collaboration
LECA, University of Grenoble France (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
- Publication
- Research Infrastructure

Scientific events

Active participation

Title Type of contribution Title of article or contribution Date Place Persons involved
International workshop on phylogenetic comparative analyses Individual talk Eco-evolutionary vulnerability assessment in pines 02.10.2017 Evora, Portugal Saladin Bianca;
Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences Seminar Talk given at a conference Are species distribution models fit for use in evolutionary analyses? 20.06.2017 Gothenburg, Sweden Zimmermann Niklaus;
Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences Seminar Talk given at a conference Environmental structuring of phylogenetic turnover 20.06.2017 Gothenburg, Sweden Saladin Bianca;
Institute of Systematic Botany Seminar, University of Zurich Individual talk Are species distribution models fit for use in evolutionary analyses? 19.12.2016 Zurich, Switzerland Zimmermann Niklaus;
Ecology Summerschool of the University of Lausanne Individual talk Matching response and predictor variables in species distribution models – issues of (up-)scaling 11.11.2016 Villars, Switzerland Zimmermann Niklaus; Saladin Bianca;
Evolution Poster Fossils matter: impro-ved estimates of diver-gence time in Pinus re-veals older diversifi-cation 17.06.2016 Austin, TX, United States of America Salamin Nicolas; Zimmermann Niklaus; Saladin Bianca;
Conference of the Int. Biogeography Society on "The Biogeography of Ecology" Poster Diversity turnover in environmental space 04.05.2016 Beijing, China Zimmermann Niklaus; Saladin Bianca; Salamin Nicolas;
Peking Forestry University Institute Seminar Individual talk Climate change & range shifts in European trees and Alpine plants 09.11.2015 Beijing, China Zimmermann Niklaus;
BiK-F Senkenberg Institute Seminar Individual talk Climate change & range shifts in European trees and Alpine plants 15.10.2015 Frankfurt, Germany Zimmermann Niklaus;
NFZ Summer School Individual talk Scaling Species & Biodiversity from Plots to Landscapes and back 24.08.2015 Fafleralp, Switzerland Zimmermann Niklaus;
9th IALE (Int. Assoc. Landscape Ecology) World Congress Talk given at a conference Global Change & Biodiversity Shifts in European Forests and Alpine Grasslands 05.07.2015 Portland, United States of America Zimmermann Niklaus;
Bodega Workshop on Applied Phylogenetics, International Course Individual talk Pinus on fire 07.03.2015 Bodega Bay, United States of America Saladin Bianca;
International Biogeography Societay Biannual Conference Talk given at a conference Phylogenetic turnover in environmental space 08.01.2015 Bayreuth, Germany Zimmermann Niklaus; Saladin Bianca; Salamin Nicolas;
Radiation and Extinction: Investigating Clade Dynamics in Deep Time; Conference of the Linnean Society Poster Fire intensity influences diversification rates in Pinus 10.11.2014 London, Great Britain and Northern Ireland Zimmermann Niklaus; Saladin Bianca; Salamin Nicolas;
Institute of Terrestrial Systems (ITES, ETH) Science Day Individual talk Linking the modelling of species distribution with evolution 12.09.2014 Zürich, Switzerland Zimmermann Niklaus;
SCSS Swiss Climate Summer School Talk given at a conference Climate Change & Range Shifts in European Trees and Alpine plants – with a focus on the Alps 03.09.2014 Grindelwald, Switzerland Zimmermann Niklaus;
Department of Ecology Seminar at Montana State University Individual talk Climate Change & Range Shifts in European Trees and Alpine plants – with a focus on the Alps 18.08.2014 Bozeman, United States of America Zimmermann Niklaus;
Institute Seminar at the CAS Institute of Applied Ecology Individual talk Models of growth potential and habitat suitability give partly divergent answers to climate change impact assessments 30.06.2014 Shenyang, China Zimmermann Niklaus;
Institute Seminar at Peking University Individual talk Climate Change & Range Shifts in European Trees – with a focus on the Alps 27.06.2014 Beijing, China Zimmermann Niklaus;
Radiations, International Conference Poster Fire intensity influences diversification rates in Pinus 12.06.2014 Zürich, Switzerland Zimmermann Niklaus; Saladin Bianca; Salamin Nicolas;


Knowledge transfer events

Active participation

Title Type of contribution Date Place Persons involved
FOEN Event on non-analogue climate futures and Swiss forests Talk 22.09.2016 Bern, Switzerland Zimmermann Niklaus;
Annual Meeting of the "Gebirgswald Pflegegruppe" of Swiss Mountain Foresters Talk 12.02.2016 Zürich, Switzerland Zimmermann Niklaus;


Communication with the public

Communication Title Media Place Year
Talks/events/exhibitions Mobilität von Pflanzen und Vegetation am Beispiel der Alpen und Mitteleuropas German-speaking Switzerland 2014

Awards

Title Year
Early Career Poster Award for "best poster" at the International Biogeography Society Conference in Beijing, May 2016. 2016

Associated projects

Number Title Start Funding scheme
170059 [Origin-Alps] Origins, assembly and conservation of plant diversity in the European Alps 01.10.2017 Project funding (Div. I-III)

Abstract

Climate change is accelerating, and is increasingly affecting species and ecosystems. One of the key questions we face is, how severely these effects will alter the geographic distribution of species, and the component communities, and how this will affect the heritage of whole biota, with their evolutionary relationships and functional trait variability. Nature conservation efforts have long attempted to protect (as many as possible of) threatened species. With rapidly increasing threats from climate and global change to large biota, we will have to expand our thinking and planning to ascertain that we conserve the evolutionary heritage, not simply species. This suggests that we do not necessarily only consider “rarity” of species, with similarly rare species being equally important for conservation. Instead, we shall also consider, how much independent evolutionary heritage and trait variation they contain. This is a rapidly growing field of research in ecology, but to date, no general conclusions can yet be drawn. We still lack detailed knowledge on how phylogenetic (representing evolutionary relatedness among species) and functional (representing trait variation among species) variability are structured along environmental, elevational or spatial gradients, how functional and phylogenetic patterns compare to species (taxonomic) diversity patterns, and how the relationships among these three levels of diversity can be integrated into a more compound planning for nature conservation.With this project we aim at analyzing (1) how species-specific, functional and phylogenetic patterns in plants are structured along environmental (climate, elevation) and spatial gradients, (2) how plant community structure changes along elevation gradients and how the spatial scale of analysis affects the found patterns, (3) how (species, phylogenetic and functional) diversity patterns are likely to respond to climate change, and (4) what the consequences are for nature conservation. We will analyze these questions by means of grassland vegetation data in Switzerland. Answering these questions will allow us to (i) single out important drivers of the evolution of floristic diversity, (ii) analyze the structuring of this diversity into communities in the European Alps, (iii) to evaluate, how climate change may affect these different diversity patterns in the future, and (iv) to explore pathways how this information can be used to extend conservation planning of grasslands in Switzerland. The proposed research, although ambitious, is feasible due to the excellent data basis readily available, which requires only minimal updating. Specifically, we have (a) a general, species-level phylogeny available encompassing all plants inhabiting the European Alps (according to Aeschimann’s Flora Alpina), (b) a large database of community level, and species distribution data from several national and project-specific databases, (c) a detailed, high-resolution (100m) database of climate and environmental predictor maps for current and possible future conditions, and (d) a large trait databases for Central European plants relevant for this project.
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