Brigitta Erschbamer

Brigitta Erschbamer
University of Innsbruck | UIBK · Institute of Botany

About

134
Publications
70,247
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5,051
Citations
Citations since 2016
52 Research Items
3441 Citations
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20162017201820192020202120220200400600
20162017201820192020202120220200400600

Publications

Publications (134)
Article
Full-text available
The reasons why some species occur widespread, while related species have restricted geographical ranges have been attributed to habitat specialization or ecological niche breadth. For species in the genus Saxifraga, habitat specialization alone cannot explain the distributional differences observed. We hypothesize that recruitment traits (i.e., ge...
Article
Full-text available
The reasons why some species occur widespread, while related species have restricted geographical ranges have been attributed to habitat specialization or ecological niche breadth. For species in the genus Saxifraga , habitat specialization alone cannot explain the distributional differences observed. We hypothesize that recruitment traits (i.e., g...
Article
Full-text available
Research in global change ecology relies heavily on global climatic grids derived from estimates of air temperature in open areas at around 2 m above the ground. These climatic grids do not reflect conditions below vegetation canopies and near the ground surface, where critical ecosystem functions occur and most terrestrial species reside. Here, we...
Article
Full-text available
Species turnover is ubiquitous. However, it remains unknown whether certain types of species are consistently gained or lost across different habitats. Here, we analysed the trajectories of 1827 plant species over time intervals of up to 78years at 141sites across mountain summits, forests, and lowland grasslands in Europe. We found, albeit with...
Article
We announce the formation of the “GLORIA ITALIA NETWORK” and present an overview of the Italian alpine plant communities changes that have occurred in the last 20 years. This network will provide coordination between Italian GLORIA sites and enhance public awareness of changes in alpine plant diversity under climate change.
Article
Full-text available
Satellite-based long-term observations of vegetation cover development in combination with recent in-situ observations provide a basis to better understand the spatio-temporal changes of vegetation patterns, their sensitivity to climate drivers and thus climatic impact on proglacial landscape development. In this study we combined field investigati...
Article
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Aims : The Vinschgau is the driest inner-alpine valley in the Eastern Alps and harbours a unique steppe vegetation. We studied these dry grassland communities and aimed to answer the following questions: Which plant communities can be found currently? Do the syntaxa described by Braun-Blanquet in the 1960s still prevail in the area? Has there been...
Article
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Aims Understanding fine-grain diversity patterns across large spatial extents is fundamental for macroecological research and biodiversity conservation. Using the GrassPlot database, we provide benchmarks of fine-grain richness values of Palaearctic open habitats for vascular plants, bryophytes, lichens and complete vegetation (i.e., the sum of the...
Article
Full-text available
Seed germination and seedling recruitment are key processes in the life cycle of plants. They enable populations to grow, migrate, or persist. Both processes are under environmental control and influenced by site conditions and plant–plant interactions. Here, we present the results of a seed-sowing experiment performed along an elevation gradient (...
Article
Full-text available
Litter decomposition is a key process for carbon and nutrient cycling in terrestrial ecosystems and is mainly controlled by environmental conditions, substrate quantity, and quality as well as microbial community abundance and composition. In particular, the effects of climate and atmospheric nitrogen (N) deposition on litter decomposition and its...
Article
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Climate change was already shown to increase species numbers in high elevations. In contrast, grazing might interfere with climate change effects. To disentangle both the effects remains a major challenge of alpine ecology. The present study investigated both the effects on species diversity along an elevation gradient in the Austrian Central Alps....
Article
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The alpine life zone is expected to undergo major changes with ongoing climate change. While an increase of plant species richness on mountain summits has generally been found, competitive displacement may result in the long term. Here, we explore how species richness and surface cover types (vascular plants, litter, bare ground, scree and rock) ch...
Preprint
Full-text available
Research in environmental science relies heavily on global climatic grids derived from estimates of air temperature at around 2 meter above ground1-3. These climatic grids however fail to reflect conditions near and below the soil surface, where critical ecosystem functions such as soil carbon storage are controlled and most biodiversity resides4-8...
Article
Full-text available
While climatic research about treeline has a long history, the climatic conditions corresponding to the upper limit of closed alpine grasslands remain poorly understood. Here, we propose a climatic definition for this limit, the 'grassline', in analogy to the treeline, which is based on the growing season length and the soil temperature. Eighty-sev...
Preprint
The direction and magnitude of long-term changes in local plant species richness are highly variable among studies, while species turnover is ubiquitous. However, it is unknown whether the nature of species turnover is idiosyncratic or whether certain types of species are consistently gained or lost across different habitats. To address this questi...
Article
Full-text available
In this paper we present a low-cost approach to mapping vegetation cover by means of high-resolution close-range terrestrial photogrammetry. A total of 249 clusters of nine 1 m2 plots each, arranged in a 3 × 3 grid, were set up on 18 summits in Mediterranean mountain regions and in the Alps to capture images for photogrammetric processing and in-si...
Article
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Storing seeds in seed banks is an effective way to preserve plant diversity and conserve species. An essential step towards a valuable conservation is the validation of germination. This study presents a germination screening of seeds from 255 species of the European Eastern Alps, which were to be stored at the Millennium Seed Bank (Kew, UK). The f...
Chapter
Gletschervorfelder werden als einmalige Freilandlaboratorien bezeichnet, in denen die schrittweise Ansied-lung von Organismen von Null an beobachtet werden kann. Zahlreiche abiotische und biotische Faktoren sind entscheidend für die erste Besiedlung durch Pflanzen. Unter den biotischen Faktoren spielt vor allem der ver-fügbare Artenpool eine entsch...
Article
Full-text available
GrassPlot is a collaborative vegetation-plot database organised by the Eurasian Dry Grassland Group (EDGG) and listed in the Global Index of Vegetation-Plot Databases (GIVD ID EU-00-003). Following a previous Long Database Report (Dengler et al. 2018, Phytocoenologia 48, 331–347), we provide here the first update on content and functionality of Gra...
Preprint
Full-text available
Mountain ecosystems are sensitive indicators of climate change. Long-term studies may be extremely useful in assessing the responses of high-elevation ecosystems to climate change and other anthropogenic drivers. Mountain research sites within the LTER (Long-Term Ecosystem Research) network are representative of various types of ecosystems and span...
Poster
In recent years, a multitude of scientific studies has succeeded in verifying the existence of significant climatechanges, in particular since the end of the Little Ice Age (c. 1850) and during the last fifty years. Mountain regions are disproportionately affected by global warming and changing precipitation conditions; temperatures in the Alps, fo...
Article
Full-text available
GrassPlot is a collaborative vegetation-plot database organised by the Eurasian Dry Grassland Group (EDGG) and listed in the Global Index of Vegetation-Plot Databases (GIVD ID EU-00-003). GrassPlot collects plot records (relevés) from grasslands and other open habitats of the Palaearctic biogeographic realm. It focuses on precisely delimited plots...
Article
Full-text available
Through litter decomposition enormous amounts of carbon is emitted to the atmosphere. Numerous large-scale decomposition experiments have been conducted focusing on this fundamental soil process in order to understand the controls on the terrestrial carbon transfer to the atmosphere. However, previous studies were mostly based on site-specific litt...
Article
Mountain ecosystems are sensitive and reliable indicators of climate change. Long-term studies may be extremely useful in assessing the responses of high-elevation ecosystems to climate change and other anthropogenic drivers from a broad ecological perspective. Mountain research sites within the LTER (Long-Term Ecological Research) network are repr...
Article
Full-text available
Globally accelerating trends in societal development and human environmental impacts since the mid-twentieth century1-7are known as the Great Acceleration and have been discussed as a key indicator of the onset of the Anthropocene epoch6. While reports on ecological responses (for example, changes in species range or local extinctions) to the Great...
Article
The evolution of species or ecotypes can occur gradually through neutral and adaptive genetic changes. To explore the influence of natural selection during early phases of divergence, morphological and ecological discontinuity and its adaptive significance were investigated in six pairs of alpine and independently evolved montane populations of Hel...
Article
Full-text available
Through litter decomposition enormous amount of carbon is emitted to the atmosphere. Numerous large-scale decomposition experiments have been conducted focusing on this fundamental soil process in order to understand the controls on the terrestrial carbon transfer to the atmosphere. However, previous studies were mostly based on site-specific litte...
Article
Full-text available
Through litter decomposition enormous amounts of carbon is emitted to the atmosphere. Numerous large-scale decomposition experiments have been conducted focusing on this fundamental soil process in order to under-stand the controls on the terrestrial carbon transfer to the atmosphere. However, previous studies were mostly based on site-specific litt...
Article
Full-text available
Zusammenfassung: Im Bereich des Oberen Lechs (Tiroler Lech, Österreich) sind noch natürliche Wildflussbereiche mit ausgeprägten Kiesbettfluren erhalten. Der Tiroler Lech bietet damit eine der letztenMöglichkeiten, Diversität und Verbreitung von Alpenschwemmlingen an einem überwiegend natürlich erhaltenen Flussökosystem zu untersuchen. In den letzt...
Article
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Evolutionary processes such as recurrent origin of polyploids and enhanced gene flow among polyploids make polyploid complexes taxonomically highly intricate. One such complex is the mostly diploid and tetraploid cloudberries (Vaccinium uliginosum L. s.l.), which are not only one of themost frequently recorded dwarf shrubs in the Arctic, but also i...
Article
The effects of grazing exclusion on species diversity and functional diversity were analyzed along an elevation gradient from the subalpine (1960m a.s.l.) to the lower and upper alpine zone (2275m-2650m a.s.l.) in the Austrian Central Alps for 15 years. Nine sites were chosen, including grasslands at different elevations, a bog and a glacier forela...
Article
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Safeguarding plants as seeds in ex situ collections is a cost effective element in an integrated plant conservation approach. The European Alps are a regional centre of plant diversity. Six institutions have established a regional network covering the European Alps which will conserve at least 500 priority plant species and which will improve the c...
Article
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In the alpine life zone, plant diversity is strongly determined by local topography and microclimate. We assessed the extent to which aspect and its relatedness to temperature affect plant species diversity, and the colonization and disappearance of species on alpine summits on a pan-European scale. Mountain summits in Europe's alpine life zone. Va...
Chapter
After glacier retreat, the ice-free forelands arise as easily detectable landforms where primary succession starts from the beginning onwards. Here, basic ecological lessons of colonization and community development can be learned. In this review we summarize the results of several case studies from the Austrian and Italian Alps, draw conclusions a...
Article
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Hybridization has been postulated as a main speciation mechanism in Cistus, a hard-seeded group of plants widely distributed in fire-prone Mediterranean shrublands. However, ecological evidence about how the segregation of hybrids from parents might occur is nonexistent. The presence of two hybrid populations in Morocco and Spain from Cistus albidu...
Article
Temperature and drought effects on germination were explored by comparing species from above and below the treeline of the Central Alps. This study should enhance the understanding of species recruitment under changing environmental conditions. The timing of germination, final germination percentage, and optimum temperature of 14 congeneric species...
Article
The demography of the alpine pioneer species Saxifraga aizoides was investigated along a successional gradient at the Rotmoos glacier foreland (2,330-2,450 m a.s.l., Obergurgl, ötztal, Austria) from recently deglaciated areas to advanced successional stages. A basic hypothesis of our study was that fecundity might play an essential role for populat...
Article
Full-text available
In glacier forelands, seeds readily germinate, however, a high proportion of seedlings die shortly after their appearance. We hypothesized that besides drought, frost and missing safe sites, heat on the ground surface could be one of the major threats for seedlings. The heat strain in different ground strata was assessed from 2007 to 2010. The heat...
Article
Full-text available
By means of a long-term monitoring project, species diversity and abundance were analysed at 16 sites along an altitudinal gradient from 1 960 m to 2 830 m in Gurgler Kamm Biosphere Reserve (LTER site of the platform Tyrolean Alps; Obergurgl, Otztal). A total of 108 permanent plots of 1 m(2) were established. The main aim was to observe effects of...
Chapter
Full-text available
The chapter is an experience in transdisciplinarity illustrated by the case of the Upper Ötztal, part of the Tyrolean LTSER Platform in the Austrian Alps. In this effort, the search was for an effective framework for integrated monitoring that would not be limited to observing and monitoring the state of nature alone, but one that would assess and...