Innovative farmers are adopting agro-ecological approaches to producing beef which they believe are better for biodiversity and soils. Lisa Norton (UK Centre for Ecology and Hydrology) and colleagues investigated the validity of these claims by comparing their grassland to those across the wider countryside surveyed as part of the national GB Countryside Survey. Public concerns about the environmental impacts of meat production add to the … Continue reading Can pasture-fed livestock farming practices improve the ecological condition of grasslands?
Lead author Olivia St-Laurent explains why she and her co-authors of the new article ‘Safeguarding eucalypt diversity through conservation-focused tree planting’ advocate for a novel approach to environmental tree planting, benefitting people and nature by prioritizing biodiversity conservation. Everywhere, governments are making commitments to stop or slow the loss of local biological diversity and to restore degraded ecosystems. In megadiverse Australia, endemic species represent 85% … Continue reading For the sake of diversity: An alternative approach to tree planting that prioritizes conservation goals
Research by De Frenne et al. published earlier this year revealed that dogs excrements contribute a significant amount of nutrients to nature reserves and warned of their potential negative impact on local biodiversity. Here, the authors respond to the international media coverage and the subsequent questions and comments they have received since their study went global. We recently published an article in Ecological Solutions and … Continue reading De Frenne & Vangansbeke: How dogs fertilize nature reserves and woodlands close to cities
Ruth Starr-Keddle describes her latest research with the North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Partnership to further the knowledge base on upland hay meadows and investigate the success of seed addition of key indicator species for restoring the landscape. Over the last 50 years there have been substantial declines in botanical diversity of traditionally managed species-rich upland hay meadows (conforming to the UK National … Continue reading Evaluating the success of upland hay meadow restoration using green hay transfer
Invasive non-native trees can cause structural and functional changes in plant communities, but how do their impact change over time? Michele de Sá Dechoum and colleagues explore this in their latest research on a coastal ecosystems in southern Brazil. We learn, since growing up, that we should plant trees. There is no doubt that trees have very important environmental and social roles, especially in the … Continue reading Cutting non-native trees helps, but may not be enough to restore coastal scrub invaded by pines
The increasing dominance of the invasive purple moor grass (Molinia caerulea) on blanket bogs is a growing threat to diversity and carbon storage. In this post, practitioners from Moors for the Future Partnership give their account of the team’s latest research attempting to reverse these effects. Reducing the domination of Molinia caerulea on blanket bogs to a more Sphagnum-rich, characteristically boggy landscape has been a … Continue reading How do you solve a problem like Molinia?
This blog is part of our colourful countdown to the holiday season where we’re celebrating the diversity and beauty of the natural world. In this post, Caroline Dong of Tulane University unearths the diverse world of floral colouration and what we have yet to discover in these decorative but mysterious plants. Floral colouration can be a useful and predictable trait. The colouration of flowers is … Continue reading Cryptic floral colouration: beyond human vision.
As our climate warms non-native plant species, introduced for their aesthetic appeal, have the potential to naturalize. Associate Editor, Rafael Zenni discusses research by Emily Haeuser and colleagues that aims to manage this risk. European ornamental garden flora as an invasion debt under climate change is published in Journal of Applied Ecology. A Portuguese version of this post is available here. Thousands of plant species have been … Continue reading Predicting future invaders in Europe
Associate Editor, Pieter De Frenne (Ghent University, Belgium) discusses assisted migration, climate change and the recent article by Brooker et al. Tiny niches and translocations: the challenge of identifying suitable recipient sites for small and immobile species. One of the key outstanding issues in applied ecology is to better inform land managers and policy makers how to adapt to climate change. Many species are currently shifting their … Continue reading Microclimate determines transplantation success
The latest issue of Journal of Applied Ecology features as Spotlight on Soil Biota. Here, Martín A. Nuñez (Senior Editor for the journal) and Nahuel Policelli discuss the merits of these papers, specially chosen and grouped together by our Editors. ‘Managing soil health’, ‘considering hidden herbivores’, ‘restoring mycorrhizal fungal diversity’, are just some of the examples that highlight an increase interest on recognizing belowground aspects … Continue reading Putting belowground biota in the Spotlight