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Michael P Perring

Michael P Perring
University of Western Australia and Ghent University · School of Plant Biology and Faculty of Bioscience Engineering

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83
Publications
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Publications

Publications (83)
Article
Rock‐derived nutrients such as calcium (Ca), magnesium (Mg), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K) are essential plant resources, yet depleted in highly weathered tropical soils, leading to nutrient limitation of productivity or other ecosystem processes. Despite this, substantial amounts of rock‐derived nutrients occur within wood, which raises questi...
Article
Understanding forest understorey community response to environmental change, including management actions, is vital given the understorey’s importance for biodiversity conservation and ecosystem functioning. The Natural World Heritage Hyrcanian temperate forests (Iran) provide an ideal template for furnishing an appreciation of how management actio...
Article
Woody species’ requirements and environmental sensitivity change from seedlings to adults, a process referred to as ontogenetic shift. Such shifts can be increased by climate change. To assess the changes in the difference of temperature experienced by seedlings and adults in the context of climate change, it is essential to have reliable climatic...
Article
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As of 2020, the world has an estimated 290 million ha of planted forests and this number is continuously increasing. Of these, 131 million ha are monospecific planted forests under intensive management. Although monospecific planted forests are important in providing timber, they harbor less biodiversity and are potentially more susceptible to dist...
Article
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Ecological restoration increasingly aims at improving ecosystem multifunctionality and making landscapes resilient to future threats, especially in biodiversity hotspots such as Mediterranean‐type ecosystems. Plants and their traits play a major role in the functioning of an ecosystem. Therefore, successful restoration towards long‐term multifuncti...
Article
Numerous decision-makers have an interest in how forest biodiversity and functioning will alter under environmental change. These decision-makers may have varied motivations underlying their management response to environmental change by focusing on contrasting management challenges and targets. Decision-makers may use different tools to aid their...
Article
Communities across trophic levels, and the functional roles they play, are vital for the sustained provision of ecosystem services. In forest systems, diversification of overstorey composition has been shown to be a key driver of biodiversity, but its influence on across‐trophic level relationships remains scarcely known. Species across trophic lev...
Preprint
Full-text available
Ecological restoration increasingly aims at improving ecosystem multifunctionality and making landscapes resilient to future threats, especially in biodiversity hotspots such as Mediterranean-type ecosystems. Successful realisation of such a strategy requires a fundamental mechanistic understanding of the link between ecosystem plant composition, p...
Article
1. The unwanted development of dense understorey vegetation composed of resource acquisitive , tall plant species competing strongly with tree regeneration can pose formidable problems for managers attempting to regenerate temperate forests. Despite many studies on the effects of understorey removal, no comprehensive review has summarised and quant...
Article
The increasing prevalence of woody liana species has been widely observed across the neotropics, but observations from temperate regions are comparatively rare. On the basis of a resurvey database of 1814 (quasi-)permanent plots from across 40 European study sites, with a median between-survey interval of 38 years, and ranging from 1933 (earliest i...
Article
Questions Light availability at the forest floor affects many forest ecosystem processes, and is often quantified indirectly through easy‐to‐measure stand characteristics. We investigated how three such characteristics, basal area, canopy cover and canopy closure, were related to each other in structurally complex mixed forests. We also asked how w...
Article
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Context Neighbouring forests constitute biological sources that enable the succession from species-poor systems, such as tree-plantings, to highly diverse forests. However, old forest patches are becoming rare in tropical agricultural landscapes. Objective We were interested in if, and how, spontaneous regeneration under tree-plantings reflects the...
Article
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Professor Richard Hobbs has had a profound influence on the development of the discipline of restoration ecology. With more than 300 publications spanning a broad scope of applied ecological sciences, he has collaborated with hundreds of researchers. His sometimes‐provocative insights, balanced by extensive empirical research, will have a lasting i...
Article
Increasing light availability by opening up the forest canopy is a key tool for forest managers to stimulate natural regeneration of trees. Tree seedlings are also impacted by a complex set of global change drivers and understorey vegetation. Here, we investigated if (altered) environmental resources and conditions due to global change, and underst...
Article
Intraspecific trait variation (ITV; i.e. variability in the mean and/or distribution of plant attribute values within species), can occur in response to multiple drivers. Environmental change and land‐use legacies could alter trait values within species directly, but also indirectly by changing the vegetation cover. Greater variability in environme...
Article
1.A central challenge of today's ecological research is predicting how ecosystems will develop under future global change. Accurate predictions are complicated by (i) simultaneous effects of different drivers, such as climate change, nitrogen deposition, and management changes; and (ii) legacy effects from previous land use. 2.We tested whether he...
Article
Plant community composition and functional traits respond to chronic drivers such as climate change and nitrogen (N) deposition. In contrast, pulse disturbances from ecosystem management can additionally change resources and conditions. Community responses to combined environmental changes may further depend on land-use legacies. Disentangling the...
Article
Questions Does the influence of forest edges on plant species richness and composition depend on forest management? Do forest specialists and generalists show contrasting patterns? Location Mesic, deciduous forests across Europe. Methods Vegetation surveys were performed in forests with three management types (unthinned, thinned 5‐10 years ago an...
Article
Full-text available
Aims Disentangling direct and indirect effects of global change drivers on plant nitrogen (N) uptake in leaves is important for understanding species and community responses in a changing world. Methods We created understorey herb communities on forest soils with and without recent agricultural history. We traced pulse additions of ¹⁵NH4¹⁵NO3 with...
Article
• Functional traits respond to environmental drivers, hence evaluating trait‐environment relationships across spatial environmental gradients can help to understand how multiple drivers influence plant communities. Global‐change drivers such as changes in atmospheric nitrogen deposition occur worldwide, but affect community trait distributions at t...
Article
The understorey in temperate forests can play an important functional role, depending on its biomass and functional characteristics. While it is known that local soil and stand characteristics largely determine the biomass of the understorey, less is known about the role of global change. Global change can directly affect understorey biomass, but a...
Article
Temperate forests cover 16% of the global forest area. Within these forests, the understorey is an important biodiversity reservoir that can influence ecosystem processes and functions in multiple ways. However, we still lack a thorough understanding of the relative importance of the understorey for temperate forest functioning. As a result, unders...
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Aims To restore species-rich grasslands on former agricultural land, typically phosphorus-poor soil conditions need to be re-established. Here we assess the potential of phosphorus extraction by biomass production, i.e. phytomining. We compare two techniques: (i) ‘mowing’, i.e. cutting and removing hay two or three times a year, and (ii) ‘P-mining’...
Article
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In the published version, the author names were presented incorrectly. The forenames and surnames were switched for everyone, except for Michael P Perring.
Article
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Anthropogenic activities have affected forests for centuries, leading to persistent legacies. Observations of agricultural legacies on forest soil properties have been site specific and contrasting. Sites and regions vary along gradients in intrinsic soil characteristics, phosphorus (P) management and nitrogen (N) deposition which could affect the...
Article
Questions Past agricultural land use and forest management have shaped and influenced the understorey composition in European forests for centuries. We investigated whether understorey vegetation assemblages are affected by (i) legacies from a historical infield/outland agricultural system (i.e. a system with nutrient‐enriched vs. nutrient‐depleted...
Article
Land-use legacies are important for explaining present-day ecological patterns and processes. However, an overarching approach to quantify land-use history effects on ecosystem properties is lacking, mainly due to the scarcity of high-quality, complete and detailed data on past land use. We propose a general framework for quantifying the effects of...
Article
Topsoil conditions in temperate forests are influenced by several soil-forming factors, such as canopy composition (e.g. through litter quality), land-use history, atmospheric deposition, and the parent material. Many studies have evaluated the effects of single factors on physicochemical topsoil conditions, but few have assessed the simultaneous e...
Article
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Background and aims Improving our understanding of ecosystem responses to land-use intensification requires explicit consideration of linkages between aboveground and belowground communities. Here, we explore linkages between plant, soil microbial and nematode community compositions along a historical land-use intensity (hLUI) gradient. Methods We...
Article
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Aim Experimental nitrogen (N) addition (fertilization) studies are commonly used to quantify the impacts of increased N inputs on plant biodiversity. However, given that plant community responses can vary considerably among individual studies, there is a clear need to synthesize and generalize findings with meta‐analytical approaches. Our goal was...
Article
Forecasting the growth of tree species to future environmental changes requires a better understanding of its determinants. Tree growth is known to respond to global‐change drivers such as climate change or atmospheric deposition, as well as to local land‐use drivers such as forest management. Yet, large geographical‐scale studies examining interac...
Article
Full-text available
Global environmental changes are expected to alter the functional characteristics of understorey herb-layer communities, potentially affecting forest ecosystem functioning. However, little is known about what drives the variability of functional traits in forest understories. Here, we assessed the role of different environmental drivers in shaping...
Article
Understorey communities can dominate forest plant diversity and strongly affect forest ecosystem structure and function. Understoreys often respond sensitively but inconsistently to drivers of ecological change, including nitrogen (N) deposition. Nitrogen deposition effects, reflected in the concept of critical loads, vary greatly not only among sp...
Article
Understorey plant communities play a key role in the functioning of forest ecosystems. Under favourable environmental conditions, competitive understorey species may develop high abundances and influence important ecosystem processes such as tree regeneration. It is thus important for managers to be able to predict accurately the abundance response...
Article
Full-text available
A global ecological restoration agenda has led to ambitious programs in environmental policy to mitigate declines in biodiversity and ecosystem services. Current restoration programs can incompletely return desired ecosystem service levels, while resilience of restored ecosystems to future threats is unknown. It is therefore essential to advance un...
Article
TreeDivNet is the largest network of biodiversity experiments worldwide, but needs to expand. We encourage colleagues to establish new experiments on the relation between tree species diversity and forest ecosystem functioning, and to make use of the platform for collaborative research.
Article
The contemporary state of functional traits and species richness in plant communities depends on legacy effects of past disturbances. Whether temporal responses of community properties to current environmental changes are altered by such legacies is, however, unknown. We expect global environmental changes to interact with land-use legacies given d...
Article
Despite considerable research demonstrating that biodiversity increases productivity in forests and regulates herbivory and pathogen damage, there remain gaps in our understanding of the shape, magnitude, and generality of these biodiversity-ecosystem functioning (BEF) relationships. Here, we review findings from TreeDivNet, a global network of 25...
Article
Reforestation of agricultural land with mixed-species environmental plantings of native trees and shrubs contributes to abatement of greenhouse gas emissions through sequestration of carbon, and to landscape remediation and biodiversity enhancement. Although accumulation of carbon in biomass is relatively well understood, less is known about associ...
Article
Growth release analysis on tree rings can be used to validate forest disturbances from the known past or reconstruct those beyond the time line or resolution of documentary evidence. Differences in ring-width measurements may result in incorrect disturbance reconstruction. Yet, little is known about how growth release detection is influenced by the...
Article
Past intensive land use complicates the successful restoration of oligotrophic species-rich grassland types. One of the major bottlenecks are the elevated nutrient levels due to fertilization, especially residual phosphorus (P). Aiming to deplete nutrients, managers often reintroduce traditional haymaking management, sometimes combined with grazing...
Article
Reforestation of agricultural lands with mixed-species environmental plantings can effectively sequester C. While accurate and efficient methods for predicting soil organic C content and composition have recently been developed for soils under agricultural land uses, such methods under forested land uses are currently lacking. This study aimed to d...
Article
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More and more ecologists have started to resurvey communities sampled in earlier decades to determine long-term shifts in community composition and infer the likely drivers of the ecological changes observed. However, to assess the relative importance of and interactions among multiple drivers, joint analyses of resurvey data from many regions span...
Article
Carbon payments can help mitigate both climate change and biodiversity decline through the reforestation of cleared agricultural land. However, to achieve biodiversity co-benefits, carbon payments must be supported by other policy mechanisms such as land-use regulation, spatial targeting, and complementary incentives. We compared the cost-effective...
Article
One of the major challenges in ecology is to predict how multiple global environmental changes will affect future ecosystem patterns (e.g. plant community composition) and processes (e.g. nutrient cycling). Here, we highlight arguments for the necessary inclusion of land-use legacies in this endeavour. Alterations in resources and conditions engend...
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Simultaneous environmental changes challenge biodiversity persistence and human wellbeing. The science and practice of restoration ecology, in collaboration with other disciplines, can contribute to overcoming these challenges. This endeavor requires a solid conceptual foundation based in empirical research which confronts, tests and influences the...
Article
Woody plantings are increasing across the globe to satisfy ecosystem service markets for carbon and ecological restoration. Assessments of these complex woody systems typically use coarse-scale parameters, based on the climate and soil type of a region, and/or remotely assessed vegetation cover, to estimate carbon in their above- and belowground bi...
Article
Feedbacks between plants and soil communities may be elusive, yet they have far-reaching consequences for plant physiology, competition and community structure. Plant–soil feedbacks (PSFs) are plant-mediated changes to soil properties that ultimately influence the performance of the same or other plants (Van der Putten et al., 2013). These PSFs may...
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Aims Understanding the relationships among disturbance, invasion and species change is essential for effective management of many systems. We investigated relationships among fire history, invasion by a native tree species, Allocasuarina huegeliana, and diversity change to understand the potential drivers of plant community alteration in a complex...
Article
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The reality confronting ecosystem managers today is one of heterogeneous, rapidly transforming landscapes, particularly in the areas more affected by urban and agricultural development. A landscape management framework that incorporates all systems, across the spectrum of degrees of alteration, provides a fuller set of options for how and when to i...
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AimBiologists increasingly recognize the roles of humans in ecosystems. Subsequently, many have argued that biodiversity conservation must be extended to environments that humans have shaped directly. Yet popular biogeographical frameworks such as biomes do not incorporate human land use, limiting their relevance to future conservation planning. ‘A...
Article
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Stemming from a special symposium at the 2012 inaugural meeting of the Society for Ecological Restoration Australasia in Perth, Western Australia, this special issue editorial addresses novel ecosystems in ecological restoration and the inherent challenges of maintaining the highest standards of environmental stewardship and biological conservation...
Article
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Novelty pervades the biosphere. In some cases, potentially irreversible abiotic and/or biotic changes have led to the crossing of thresholds and thus the formation of “novel ecosystems.” Their widespread emergence (particularly on land) and the presence of continued environmental change challenge a traditional restoration goal of restoring an histo...
Article
Increasingly governments and the private sector are using planted forests to offset carbon emissions. Few studies, however, examine how tree diversity -- defined here as species richness and/or stand composition -- affects carbon storage in these plantings. Using aboveground tree biomass as a proxy for carbon storage, we used meta-analysis to compa...
Article
Shifts in disturbance regime have often been linked to invasion in systems by native and nonnative species. This process can have negative effects on biodiversity and ecosystem function. Degradation may be ameliorated by the reinstatement of the disturbance regimes, such as the reintroduction of fire in pyrogenic systems. Modeling is one method thr...
Conference Paper
Background/Question/Methods Increasingly governments and the private sector are using planted forests to offset carbon emissions. Few studies, however, examine how tree diversity affects C-sequestration and storage in these plantings. Here we consider arguments for planting tree species mixes rather than monocultures in C-offset projects. First,...
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Full-text available
Tipping points ? where systems shift radically and potentially irreversibly into a different state ? have received considerable attention in ecology. Although there is convincing evidence that human drivers can cause regime shifts at local and regional scales, the increasingly invoked concept of planetary scale tipping points in the terrestrial bio...
Article
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Restoration is a young and swiftly developing field. It has been almost a decade since the inception of one of the field's foundational documents—the Society for Ecological Restoration International Primer on Ecological Restora-tion (Primer). Through a series of organized discussions, we assessed the Primer for its currency and relevance in the mod...
Article
Tipping points - where systems shift radically and potentially irreversibly into a different state - have received considerable attention in ecology. Although there is convincing evidence that human drivers can cause regime shifts at local and regional scales, the increasingly invoked concept of planetary scale tipping points in the terrestrial bio...
Chapter
This chapter begins by reviewing the foundational principles that point to the existence and importance of novel ecosystems. It provides a brief review of previous formulations of the novel ecosystem concept. The chapter then steps into synthesis and presents a new framework for the novel ecosystems concept. Using the original Hobbs components of n...
Chapter
This chapter traces the industrial origins of a rocky novel ecosystem of Cei Balast, an island near Porthmadog, a harbour town on the northwest coast of Wales, United Kingdom. It also discusses the conservation of species in the rocky novel ecosystem. Of most conservation interest is a diminutive plant commonly known as Welsh mudwort (Limosella aus...
Chapter
This chapter uses spatially explicit historical models to investigate how novel ecosystems have spread across the terrestrial biosphere in the last 8000 years. It also show their likely current distribution in both the terrestrial and marine realms. The aim here is to demonstrate that novel ecosystems can be ancient and deserve greater consideratio...
Chapter
This chapter addresses the facets of novelty that pervade the urban environment before reviewing the ecosystem services that different components of the urban environment provide. It describes the known and potential contribution of novel elements to these services, with a particular focus on vegetation. The services reviewed include biodiversity m...
Article
The ability of restoration approaches to provide valued ecosystem services needs to be assessed. The emerging carbon market provides an incentive to afforest agricultural landscapes and could potentially achieve multiple outcomes. However, planting monocultures for carbon sequestration may preclude effective delivery of other ecosystem services. He...
Conference Paper
Background/Question/Methods The restoration of ecosystem functions and services is increasingly a management priority. As such, throughout Australia, groups are interested in planting trees not just to restore historical woodlands, but also for carbon sequestration. Deciding which trees to plant is pivotal to project success. Monoculture planting...
Article
Full-text available
Recruitment is central to the maintenance of any plant population, particularly in disturbed or drought-prone environments. Recruitment relies on both seedling emergence and subsequent survival to establishment, processes susceptible to changes in soil water potential. Here, we use an existing relationship between seedling survivorship and soil wat...
Conference Paper
Background/Question/Methods Biodiversity loss is a recognized threat worldwide. Human population expansion and economic development have lead to habitat loss, resource depletion, land use change, and dramatic disturbance regime shifts. In this presentation, we focus on kwongan, a sandplain heath system in one of the world’s biodiversity hotspots,...