Reading list 21. – 27. January 2019

A lot of phenology papers this week, because I am working on an article. And only 5 papers, because I also reviewed one paper.

Vermeulen. 2015. On selection for flowering time plasticity in response to density. New Phytologist, 205: 429–439

I only managed to read this paper… but I read a lot of other paper, for writing the introduction to a paper. Just not the once I had thought. So here a few papers I actually read.

Wipf. 2010. Phenology, growth, and fecundity of eight subarctic tundra species in response to snowmelt manipulations. Plant Ecology, 207: 53–66.
Kawai, Y., Kudo, G., (2011). Local differentiation of flowering phenology in an alpine- snowbed herb Gentiana nipponica. Botany 89: 361–367.
Cooper, E. J. et al. 2011. Late snowmelt delays plant development and results in lower reproductive success in the High Arctic. – Plant Sci. 180: 157–167.
Totland, Ø. 1993. Pollination in alpine Norway: flowering phenology, insect visitors, and visitation rates in two plant communities. – Can. J. Bot. 71: 1072–1079.
Totland, Ø. 1994. Intraseasonal variation in pollination intensity and seed set in an alpine population of Ranunculus acris in southwestern Norway. – Ecography 17: 159–165.

Reading list 14. – 20. January 2019

Wieczynski et al. 2018. Climate shapes and shifts functional biodiversity in forests worldwidePNAS.116 (2) 587-592
Alexander et al. 2018. Lags in the response of mountain plant communities to climate change. GCB. 24:563–579
Flynn & Wolkovich. 2018. Temperature and photoperiod drive spring phenology across all species in a temperate forest community. New Phytologist. 219:1353–1362
Losapio et al. 2018. The assembly of a plant network in alpine vegetation. J Veg Sci. 29:999–1006
Gross et al. 2018. Functional trait diversity maximizes ecosystem multifunctionality. Nat Eco Evol. 0132

Reading list 7. – 13. January 2019

Carver, R. E., 1980. REDUCING SAND SAMPLE VOLUMES BY SPOONING. Journal of Sedimentary Research (just because of the title).
Majdi et al. 2018. There’s no harm in having too much: A comprehensive toolbox of methods in trophic ecology. Food Webs 16 (e00100)
Kaarlejärvi et al. 2015. Mammalian herbivores confer resilience of Arctic shrub‐dominated ecosystems to changing climate. GCB
Freeman et al. 2018. Expanding, shifting and shrinking: The impact of global warming on species’ elevational distributions. GEB
Basso et al. 2018. Facing global change: the millennium challenge for plant scientists. New Phytologist
Gremer et al. 2018. Increasing temperature seasonality may overwhelm shifts in soil moisture to favor shrub over grass dominance in Colorado Plateau drylands. Oecologia. 188(4):1195-1207

Reading list 1. – 6. January 2019

I want to read more, read deeper, read the full paper, not only scanning the figures. Over the last years, I have made a reading list that has become longer and longer, because I never had time to read. The topics are a bit random, but mainly climate change ecology. So, here is my reading list for next week. I will start with 6 papers a week. Let’s see how it goes.

Harrison et al. 2018. A brief introduction to mixed effects modelling and multi-model inference in ecology
Prevéy et al. 2017. Greater temperature sensitivity of plant phenology at colder sites: implications for convergence across northern latitudes.
Isbell et al. 2015. Biodiversity increases the resistance of ecosystem productivity to climate extremes.
Wilsey et al. 2017. Phenology differences between native and novel exotic‐dominated grasslands rival the effects of climate change.
Midolo et al. 2018. Impacts of nitrogen addition on plant species richness and abundance: A global meta‐analysis.

GoT resarch

Recently, I came across an article about mortality and survival in Game of Thrones (GoT). The study is published in Injury Epidemiology, examining the survival of 330 main GoT characters, sociodemographic factors, time to death, and circumstances of death. They find that mortality risk is high and characters are more likely to die if they are male and lowborn.
The article is a great read including humorous aspects. I started to search for other GoT research and found astonishingly many articles. And there is probably more!

Fight, flight or finished: forced fitness behaviours in Game of Thrones by Rhodes and Zehr discusses the forced fitness behaviours and associated hormonal responses in GoT.

Figure from Rhotes and Zehr 2017.

The purpose of the study from Daniel and Westerman (2017) is to determine how people reacted to the end of a parasocial relationship per a character death, by analysing Twitter reactions after the death of fictional character Jon Snow from Game of Thrones. They found that we may respond to a television character’s death in some similar ways as a real person’s.
Jules and Lippoff (2016) investigate the dermatological deaseas called Greyscale and compare it to the Hansen disease, or leprosy.
And finally, Clapton and Shepherd (2017) show that cultural texts such as GoT can show us different ways of thinking about the world.

There must be more articles that in a serious (or not so much) way try to gain knowledge from a television serious or how we react or interact with/to it. I would love to study some ecological aspect of Game of Thrones. Maybe something about the dragons…


Clapton, W. and Shepherd, L. J. 2017. Lessons from Westeros: Gender and power in Game of Thrones. Politics. 37(1) 5–18.
Daniel, E. S. and Westerman, D. K. 2017. ValarMorghulis (All Parasocial Men Must Die): Having Nonfictional Responses to a Fictional Character, Communication. Research Reports, 34:2, 143-152.
Jules B. and Lipoff, M. D. 2016. Greyscale—A Mystery Dermatologic Disease on HBO’s Game of Thrones. JAMA Dermatol. 152(8):904.
Lystad, R. P. and Brown, B. T. 2018. Death is certain, the time is not”: mortality and survival in Game of Thrones. Injury Epidemiology20185:44
Rhodes, R. E. and Zehr, E. P. 2017. Fight, flight or finished: forced fitness behaviours in Game of Thrones.

SoilTemp – a global soil temperature database

SoilTemp is a new project initiated by Jonas Lambrechts and collegues to create a global soil temperature database. The goal is to make soil temperature data available to scientist, increase and facilitate collaborations across projects and synthesise microclimate data on a global scale to answer key ecological questions.

SoilTemp has recently launched a webpage, where information regarding the data, project updates and future publications can be found. So far they have collected For 1867 temperature sensors from 11 countries, from sea level till 6194 meter above the ocean, and covering more than a decade. And the collection is ongoing.

SeedClim has already provided their long-term (10 years) of soil temperature data. TransPlant, our Chinese Collaborators will follow.

Photo: Jonas Lambrechts


I just discoverd the coolest thing ever! PhyloPic, a database with reusable silhouette images of organisms. Each image is available under a Creative Commons license and can be reused (for non-commercial work), some need to be attributed.

Medusozoa by Walker Pett


Fragaria, unknown creator.


Caprealla by Collin Gross, see license agreement


And here instructions by @TrevorABranch how to insert a silhouette of an animal or plant into your R plot!

New article out comparing transplant, OTCs and gradients

Transplants, Open Top Chambers (OTCs) and Gradient Studies Ask Different Questions in Climate Change Effects Studies

Long-term monitoring, space-for-time substitutions along gradients, and in situ temperature manipulations are common approaches to understand effects of climate change on alpine and arctic plant communities. Although general patterns emerge from studies using different approaches, there are also some inconsistencies. To provide better estimates of plant community responses to future warming across a range of environments, there have been repeated calls for integrating different approaches within single studies. Thus, to examine how different methods in climate change effect studies may ask different questions, we combined three climate warming approaches in a single study in the Hengduan Mountains of southwestern China. We monitored plant communities along an elevation gradient using the space-for-time approach, and conducted warming experiments using open top chambers (OTCs) and plant community transplantation toward warmer climates along the same gradient. Plant species richness and abundances were monitored over 5 years addressing two questions: (1) how do plant communities respond to the different climate warming approaches? (2) how can the combined approaches improve predictions of plant community responses to climate change? The general trend across all three approaches was decreased species richness with climate warming at low elevations. This suggests increased competition from immigrating lowland species, and/or from the species already growing inside the plots, as indicated by increased biomass, vegetation height or proportion of graminoids. At the coldest sites, species richness decreased in OTCs and along the gradient, but increased in the transplants, suggesting that plant communities in colder climates are more open to invasion from lowland species, with slow species loss. This was only detected in the transplants, showing that different approaches, may yield different results. Whereas OTCs may constrain immigration of new species, transplanted communities are rapidly exposed to new neighbors that can easily colonize the small plots. Thus, different approaches ask slightly different questions, in particular regarding indirect climate change effects, such as biotic interactions. To better understand both direct and indirect effects of climate change on plant communities, we need to combine approaches in future studies, and if novel interactions are of particular interest, transplants may be a better approach than OTCs.