Jonas Johan Lembrechts

Jonas Johan Lembrechts
University of Antwerp | UA · Department of Biology

PhD

About

50
Publications
46,289
Reads
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1,355
Citations
Introduction
I am a postdoctoral researcher in the Centre of Excellence on Plants and Ecosystems from the University of Antwerp, co-coordinator of the Mountain Invasion Research Network (MIREN, www.mountaininvasions.org), and the driving force behind SoilTemp (https://soiltemp.weebly.com). My research focusses mostly on plant species (re)distributions in mountains, and the effect of microclimate and disturbance on it.
Additional affiliations
May 2018 - present
University of Antwerp
Position
  • PostDoc Position
Description
  • Disentangling the small-scale mechanisms behind regional plant species distribution shifts under climate and land use change in mountains
October 2013 - May 2018
University of Antwerp
Position
  • PhD Student
Description
  • Plants on the move: the effects of microclimate and disturbance on plant species distributions in mountains
September 2010 - September 2013
University of Antwerp
Position
  • Internship
Description
  • Fieldwork, Participation in research and projects, Introduction of the research group
Education
September 2011 - July 2013
University of Antwerp
Field of study
  • Biology, ecology and environment

Publications

Publications (50)
Article
Full-text available
Species distribution models (SDMs) are widely used to make predictions and assess questions regarding the spatial distribution and redistribution of species under environmental changes. Current SDMs are, however, often based on free‐air or synoptic temperature conditions with a coarse resolution, and thus may fail to capture apparent temperature (c...
Article
Full-text available
Current analyses and predictions of spatially‐explicit patterns and processes in ecology most often rely on climate data interpolated from standardized weather stations. This interpolated climate data represents long‐term average thermal conditions at coarse spatial resolutions only. Hence, many climate‐forcing factors that operate at fine spatiote...
Article
Full-text available
Disparate rates of micro- and macroclimate warming forge future biodiversity and ecosystems
Article
Plant associated mutualists can mediate invasion success by affecting the ecological niche of non-native plant species. Anthropogenic disturbance is also key in facilitating invasion success through changes in biotic and abiotic conditions, but the combined effect of these two factors in natural environments is understudied. To better understand th...
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
Alien plant species invasion depends on biotic and abiotic conditions that can represent environmental barriers as compared to their native range conditions. Specifically, little is known about how alien plant species distribute along the urban-to-rural gradients based on their native climatic conditions and how environmental conditions along these...
Article
Full-text available
Aim The presence and use of trails may change plant species' realized climatic niches via modified abiotic and biotic conditions including propagule transport, allowing competition‐pressed alpine species to expand their rear edges towards warmer locations and lowland species to extend their leading edges towards cooler locations. We investigated wh...
Article
Full-text available
Hikers and livestock using mountain trails damage native vegetation and act as seed vectors, thus favouring the spread of non-native plants. We evaluated the effect of trails and livestock abundance on the success of non-native plants in the arid central Andes of Argentina. We surveyed six trails, covering elevations between 2400 and 3570 m a.s.l....
Article
Full-text available
Snow is an important driver of ecosystem processes in cold biomes. Snow accumulation determines ground temperature, light conditions, and moisture availability during winter. It also affects the growing season’s start and end, and plant access to moisture and nutrients. Here, we review the current knowledge of the snow cover’s role for vegetation,...
Article
Full-text available
Snow is an important driver of ecosystem processes in cold biomes. Snow accumulation determines ground temperature, light conditions and moisture availability during winter. It also affects the growing season’s start and end, and plant access to moisture and nutrients. Here, we review the current knowledge of the snow cover’s role for vegetation, p...
Article
Full-text available
Climate change and other global change drivers threaten plant diversity in mountains worldwide. A widely documented response to such environmental modifications is for plant species to change their elevational ranges. Range shifts are often idiosyncratic and difficult to generalize, partly due to variation in sampling methods. There is thus a need...
Article
To understand time‐lag dynamics in the response of biodiversity to contemporary environmental changes (e.g. macroclimate warming and atmospheric pollution), we need to consider former anthropogenic forcing factors such as past land uses and management practices that can have both compounding and confounding effects. This is especially true in Europ...
Article
Pronounced climate warming has resulted in a significant reduction of snow cover extent, as well as poleward and upslope shifts of shrubs in Arctic and alpine ecosystems. However, it is difficult to establish links between changes in snow cover and shrub distribution changes due to a lack of in situ and long-term snow records in relation to abundan...
Article
Full-text available
The factors that determine patterns of non-native species richness and abundance are context dependent in both time and space. Global change has significantly boosted plant invasions in mountains, therefore, understanding which factors determine the invasion and at what scale they operate are fundamental for decision-making in the conservation of m...
Article
Forest canopies buffer macroclimatic temperature fluctuations. However, we do not know if and how the capacity of canopies to buffer understorey temperature will change with accelerating climate change. Here we map the difference (offset) between temperatures inside and outside forests in the recent past and project these into the future in boreal,...
Article
Branched glycerol dialkyl glycerol tetraethers (brGDGTs) are bacterial membrane lipids which can be used to reconstruct past terrestrial mean annual air temperature (MAAT) and soil pH values. To reconstruct these environmental conditions in geological archives, we make use of the brGDGT ratios MBTʹ5ME, CBTʹ and IR, which summarize the structural va...
Preprint
Full-text available
While the role of environmental filters, usually described by elevation as proxy, and anthropogenic disturbance as drivers of non-native plant diversity and abundance in mountains have been extensively studied, the impact of herbivores are less explored. Livestock grazing can facilitate the introduction of non-native species by seed dispersal and r...
Article
Ecological research heavily relies on coarse-­gridded climate data based on standardized temperature measurements recorded at 2 m height in open landscapes. However, many organisms experience environmental conditions that differ substantially from those captured by these macroclimatic (i.e. free air) temperature grids. In forests, the tree canopy f...
Preprint
Full-text available
Hikers and livestock using mountain trails damage native vegetation and act as seed vectors, thus favouring the spread of non-native plants. We evaluated the effect of trails and livestock abundance on the success of non-native plants in the arid central Andes of Argentina. We surveyed six trails, covering elevations between 2400 m and 3570 m a.s.l...
Article
The significant portion of global terrestrial biodiversity harbored in the mountains is under increasing threat from various anthropogenic impacts. Protecting fragile mountain ecosystems requires understanding how these human disturbances affect biodiversity. As roads and railways are extended further into mountain ecosystems, understanding the lon...
Article
Full-text available
Urban environments often host a greater abundance and diversity of alien plant species than rural areas. This is frequently linked to higher disturbance and propagule pressure, but could also be related to the additional establishment of species from warmer native ranges in cities, facilitated by the latter's higher air temperatures and drier soils...
Article
Full-text available
When colonizing new areas, alien plant species success can depend strongly on local environmental conditions. Microclimatic barriers might be the reason why some alien plant species thrive in urban areas, while others prefer rural environments. We tested the hypothesis that the climate in the native range is a good predictor of the urbanity of alie...
Article
Full-text available
Aim Here, we aim to: (a) investigate the local effect of environmental and anthropogenic factors on alien plant invasion in sub-Antarctic islands; and (b) explore whether and how functional traits affect alien species dependence on anthropogenic factors in these environments. Location Possession Island, Crozet archipelago (French sub-Antarctic isl...
Preprint
Full-text available
Climate change and other global change drivers threaten plant diversity in mountains worldwide. A widely documented response to such environmental modifications is for plant species to change their elevational ranges. Range shifts are often idiosyncratic and difficult to generalize, partly due to variation in sampling methods. There is thus a need...
Article
Full-text available
Many organisms live in environments in which temperatures differ substantially from those measured by standard weather stations. The last decade has witnessed a paradigm shift in efforts to quantify these differences and to understand their ecological, functional and evolutionary implications. This renewed interest in microclimate ecology has been...
Article
Full-text available
Issue Climate change, and its impacts on ecological, agricultural and other societal systems, is most often studied by relying on temperature data derived from countrywide weather‐station networks. Yet, these data do not capture microclimates, those arising from soil, vegetation and topography, at spatial scales relevant to the majority of organism...
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
Disturbances fundamentally alter ecosystem functions, yet predicting their impacts remains a key scientific challenge. While the study of disturbances is ubiquitous across many ecological disciplines, there is no agreed-upon, cross-disciplinary foundation for discussing or quantifying the complexity of disturbances, and no consistent terminology or...
Article
Full-text available
Forest microclimates contrast strongly with the climate outside forests. To fully understand and better predict how forests' biodiversity and functions relate to climate and climate change, microclimates need to be integrated into ecological research. Despite the potentially broad impact of microclimates on the response of forest ecosystems to glob...
Preprint
Full-text available
Aim: Here, we aim to: (i) investigate the local effect of environmental and human-related factors on alien plant invasion in sub-Antarctic islands; (ii) explore the relationship between alien species features and their dependence on anthropogenic propagule pressure; and (iii) unravel key traits conferring invasiveness in the sub-Antarctic. Location...
Article
Full-text available
Current analyses and predictions of spatially‐explicit patterns and processes in ecology most often rely on climate data interpolated from standardized weather stations. This interpolated climate data represents long‐term average thermal conditions at coarse spatial resolutions only. Hence, many climate‐forcing factors that operate at fine spatiote...
Article
Full-text available
Creating accurate habitat suitability and distribution models (HSDMs) for soil microbiota is far more challenging than for aboveground organism groups. In this perspective paper, we propose a conceptual framework that addresses several of the critical issues holding back further applications. Most importantly, we tackle the mismatch between the bro...
Article
Full-text available
Roadsides are major pathways of plant invasions in mountain regions. However, the increasing importance of tourism may also turn hiking trails into conduits of non-native plant spread to remote mountain landscapes. Here, we evaluated the importance of such trails for plant invasion in five protected mountain areas of southern central Chile. We ther...
Article
Full-text available
Many questions in global change ecology deal with large-scale patterns, with global databases of species distributions, species traits and ecosystem processes becoming increasingly available (e.g. Bruelheide et al., 2018). Current analyses of these large-scale patterns - and their predictions under anthropogenic climate change - often rely on spati...
Article
Full-text available
Climate change is a worldwide threat to biodiversity and ecosystem structure, functioning, and services. To understand the underlying drivers and mechanisms, and to predict the consequences for nature and people, we urgently need better understanding of the direction and magnitude of climate‐change impacts across the soil–plant–atmosphere continuum...
Article
Full-text available
Aim: While species distribution models (SDMs) traditionally link species occurrences to free-air temperature data at coarse spatiotemporal resolution, the distribution of organisms might rather be driven by temperatures more proximal to their habitats. Several solutions are currently available, such as downscaled or interpolated coarse-grained free...
Article
Full-text available
Prevention is regarded as a cost-effective management action to avoid unwanted impacts of non-native species. However, targeted prevention can be difficult if little is known about the traits of successfully invading non-native species or habitat characteristics that make native vegetation more resistant to invasion. Here, we surveyed mountain road...
Article
Full-text available
Motivation: The Tundra Trait Team (TTT) database includes field‐based measurements of key traits related to plant form and function at multiple sites across the tundra biome. This dataset can be used to address theoretical questions about plant strategy and trade‐offs, trait–environment relationships and environmental filtering, and trait variation...
Preprint
Full-text available
Handbook for standardized methods in terrestrial global change experiments
Article
Full-text available
To answer the long‐standing question if we can predict plant invader success based on characteristics of the environment (invasibility) or the invasive species (invasiveness), or the combination of both, there is a need for detailed observational studies in which habitat properties, non‐native plant traits, and the resulting invader success are loc...
Article
Full-text available
Although species richness effects on ecosystem functioning have been studied thoroughly in countless experiments, the effects of the other side of diversity – species evenness – remain less identified, especially at high species richness. Due to the large number of different model ecosystems that need to be created, the explanatory power of the exp...
Article
Full-text available
Alpine environments are currently relatively free from non-native plant species, although their presence and abundance have recently been on the rise. It is however still unclear whether the observed low invasion levels in these areas are due to an inherent resistance of the alpine zone to invasions or whether an exponential increase in invasion is...
Article
Full-text available
Until now, non-native plant species were rarely found at high elevations and latitudes. However, partly due to climate warming, biological invasions are now on the rise in these extremely cold environments. These plant invasions make it timely to undertake a thorough experimental assessment of what has previously been holding them back. This knowle...
Article
Full-text available
Recent years have seen a surge of interest in understanding patterns and processes of plant invasions into mountains. Here, we synthesise current knowledge about the spread of non-native plants along elevation gradients, emphasising the current status and impacts that these species have in alpine ecosystems. Globally, invasions along elevation grad...
Article
Full-text available
Roads are known to act as corridors for dispersal of plant species. With their variable microclimate, role as corridors for species movement and reoccurring disturbance events, they show several characteristics that might influence range dynamics of both native and non-native species. Previous research on plant species ranges in mountains however s...
Article
Full-text available
Carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) cycling under future climate change is associated with large uncertainties in litter decomposition and the turnover of soil C and N. In addition, future conditions (especially altered precipitation regimes and warming) are expected to result in changes in vegetation composition, and accordingly in litter species and chem...
Article
Full-text available
Recent experimental observations show that gap colonisation in small-stature (e.g. grassland and dwarf shrubs) vegetation strongly depends on the abiotic conditions within them. At the same time, within-gap variation in biotic interactions such as competition and facilitation, caused by distance to the gap edge, would affect coloniser performance,...
Article
Full-text available
Effects of roads on plant communities are not well known in cold-climate mountain ecosystems, where road building and development are expected to increase in future decades. Knowledge of the sensitivity of mountain plant communities to disturbance by roads is however important for future conservation purposes. We investigate the effects of roads on...

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Projects (2)
Project
We are building a global database of soil temperatures and ​associated species data for use in ecological modelling. More on https://soiltemp.weebly.com
Project
The aim of MIREN is to understand the effects of global change on plant invasions and plant biodiversity in mountainous areas. We perform observational and experimental studies along elevation gradients to evaluate and quantify the processes and mechanisms that are shaping mountain plant communities. By performing our experiments in this way we can evaluate processes at local (within site), region, and global (both comparing within and between latitudinal zones) scales.