The water flea has genetically adapted to climate change. Biologists from KU Leuven, Belgium, compared ‘resurrected’ water fleas – hatched from forty-year-old eggs – with more recent specimens. The project was coordinated by Professor Luc De Meester from the Laboratory of Aquatic Ecology, Evolution and Conservation.
In 2100, a warmer climate will allow the growth of trees and bushes in large parts of Greenland that are currently ice-free. This will mean both risks and opportunities for the Greenlanders, according to a new analysis led by researchers from Aarhus University.
Predator–prey interactions play an important role for species composition and community dynamics at local scales, but their importance in shaping large-scale gradients of species richness remains unexplored.
Near-future climate changes are likely to elicit major vegetation changes. Disequilibrium dynamics, which occur when vegetation comes out of equilibrium with climate, are potentially a key facet of these. Understanding these dynamics is crucial for making accurate predictions, informing conservation planning, and understanding likely changes in ecosystem function on time scales relevant to society. However, many predictive studies have instead focused on equilibrium end-points with little consideration of the transient trajectories.