Raphael Proulx

Raphael Proulx
Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières · Département des Sciences de l'Environnement

PhD physical geography
Chair in Ecological Integrity Co-Director of the Research Centre on Watersheds-Aquatic Ecosystems Interaction (RIVE)

About

75
Publications
25,866
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Introduction
I'm a community ecologist with training in freshwater sciences, landscape and soundscape analysis. My study systems include freshwater fish, wetland plants, signing insects and birds. My research questions revolve around community assembly processes and phenology, as well as biodiversity-ecosystem functioning relationships. Method-wise, I value crowd-sourcing, meta-analyses and regression models.

Publications

Publications (75)
Article
Full-text available
Sounds are more easily transmitted underwater than through air and many freshwater fish species can hear them, particularly over the low frequencies. Recent studies on freshwater fish evidenced that hearing sensitivities can be limited by the level of ambient noise, a phenomenon also known as acoustic masking. However, it is still unclear whether v...
Article
Full-text available
Species composition is constrained by two upper-level processes in ecological contexts where the dispersion of organisms is not severely limited, namely selection and ecological drift. This intuitive framework has motivated a constant flow of empirical models for linking the species matrix to the local environmental descriptors, in which the enviro...
Article
Full-text available
Purpose of Review Quantifying the effects of anthropogenic sounds on wildlife at the landscape scale of observation has been notoriously difficult because these sounds are often confounded with the presence of infrastructure and loss of habitat through resource exploitation activities. In this paper, we review how anthropogenic landscape changes af...
Chapter
With every breath we take, we sample the chemical composition of our environment. Minute amounts of odor sources reach the olfactory epithelium and trigger a cascade of events in the brain. This leads to the perception of odors, although in many circumstances we are not aware of our odorous environment. Next to detection and identification of smell...
Article
Full-text available
Background The functioning of ecosystems is highly variable through space and time. Climatic and edaphic factors are forcing ecological communities to converge, whereas the diversity of plant assemblages dampens these effects by allowing communities’ dynamics to diverge. This study evaluated whether the growing season phenology of wetland plant com...
Preprint
Aim: Selection within natural communities has mainly been studied along large abiotic gradient, while the selection of individuals within population should occur locally under the play of biotic filter. To better seize the role of the latter, we postulated that the hierarchal nature of environmental selection and the multiple dimension of species t...
Article
Plant greening phenology is a key response trait that drives numerous ecosystem functions such as carbon storage and flowering. Plant communities with a diversity of phenology responses could show a longer greening season due to a more complete occupation of the temporal window available for growth. However, it is unclear how species composition an...
Article
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Lake-edge wetland types result from the influence of various hydrogeomorphological (HGM) predictors, such as water level, hydroperiod, and elevation. Climate and land-use changes could induce variations in lake water levels, and subsequently trigger changes in wetland type and area. This study aims to determine whether HGM predictors alone can be u...
Article
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ContextAlteration of natural vegetation cover across the landscape drives biodiversity changes. Although several studies have explored the relationships between vegetation cover and species richness, as well as between land-cover variance and species richness, few have considered the non-independence of these two biodiversity drivers.Objectives The...
Article
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Ecological communities are unique assemblages of species that coexist in consequence of multi-causal processes that have proven hard to generalize. One possible exception are processes that control the biomass packing of vegetation stands; the amount of aboveground standing biomass expressed per unit volume. In this paper, I investigated the empiri...
Article
Introduction Biological invasions are a major threat to global biodiversity and can have substantial socioeconomic costs. Although invasive non–native species have been studied extensively, their monitoring and management are often inadequate (Pergl et al. 2020). Moreover, the great harm invasive non–native species cause tends to be underestimated...
Article
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Canopy structure is an important driver of the energy budget of grassland ecosystem and is, at the same time, altered by plant diversity. Diverse plant communities typically have taller and more densely packed canopies than less diverse communities. With this, they absorb more radiation, have a higher transpiring leaf surface and are better coupled...
Article
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Ecological integrity is a term often used to describe the state of ecosystems subjected to anthropogenic pressures. It is usually defined closely to the literal definition of integrity: being whole or unimpaired. Considering the deep changes our world is undergoing, we argue here for ecological indicators that are not restricted to naturalness targ...
Article
Conservation biologists can use several criteria, such as species richness and incidence of range-restricted species, to prioritize allocation of conservation efforts and identify sites of high ecological value. Recently, ecological uniqueness has been proposed as an effective criterion because it allows the identification of species assemblages th...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background: The functioning of ecosystems is highly variable through space and time. Climatic and edaphic factors are forcing ecological communities to converge, whereas the diversity of plant assemblages dampens these effects by allowing communities’ dynamics to diverge. This study evaluated whether the growing season phenology of plant communitie...
Article
The ecological literature reports little empirical evidence from biodiversity – ecosystem functioning (BEF) experiments in wetland systems, even though wetlands are widely known for their water filtering capacity. Experiments comparing the effect of plant monocultures and mixtures on water quality to improve pollutant removal efficiency in treatmen...
Article
Hydromorphological descriptors such as substrate type, water depth and velocity are commonly used to describe fish habitat, but few studies have focused on how underwater sounds affect habitat use by freshwater fish. We evaluated the influence of the underwater soundscape and other habitat descriptors on the spatial distribution of brook trout (Sal...
Article
1. Intensive management of urban lawns is globally widespread, predominantly for aesthetic reasons. However, a growing body of knowledge demonstrates negative ecological and environmental effects of this practice. 2. We present a meta-analysis of North American and European studies from 2004 to 2019, which incorporates three previously unpublished...
Preprint
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Explaining the existence of highly diverse plant communities under strong abiotic filtering is a long-standing challenge in ecology. Hierarchical aspects of abiotic and biotic filters are rarely taken into account and studies focus mainly on community-level aggregated patterns. Because variations in biotic conditions might take place in short abiot...
Article
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The potential use of herbarium specimens to detect herbivory trends is enormous but largely untapped. The objective of this study was to reconstruct the long-term herbivory pressure on the Eurasian invasive plant, purple loosestrife ( Lythrum salicaria ), by evaluating leaf damage over 1323 specimens from southern Québec (Canada). The hypothesis te...
Article
How much of the acoustic resource shared by vocalizing animal species is masked by human-induced noise has become a central question in the emerging field of soundscape ecology. The goal of our study was to evaluate the joint probability that masking could occur for anuran, bird, or stridulating orthopteran species along the spectral, spatial and t...
Article
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Traditional tools to map the distribution of urban green space have been hindered by either high cost and labour inputs or poor spatial resolution given the complex spatial structure of urban landscapes. What’s more, those tools do not observe the urban landscape from a perspective in which citizens experience a city. We test a novel application of...
Poster
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The use of photographic time-lapse cameras has provided an efficient tool to obtain some heterogeneity indexes of vegetation. The application of this new approach is presented for the first time applied to two tropical ecosystems to monitor vegetation in space and time. Image analysis was based on information theory for each component of the HSV sp...
Article
Phenotypic plasticity, a process by which individuals modify their morphology, physiology, or behaviour in response to environmental changes, can be seen as the first step in adaptive evolution. Phenotypic plasticity is adaptive if two conditions are met: (i) the phenotype is associated with an environment (plastic response) and (ii) the phenotype–...
Article
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In the past two decades, a large number of studies have investigated the relationship between biodiversity and ecosystem functioning, most of which focussed on a limited set of ecosystem variables. The Jena Experiment was set up in 2002 to investigate the effects of plant diversity on element cycling and trophic interactions, using a multi-discipli...
Article
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Culturomics is an emerging field of study that seeks to understand human culture through the quantitative analysis of changes in word frequencies in large bodies of digital texts. Culturomics research can help nature conservation respond to cultural trends, building and reinvigorating its societal relevance. We identify five areas where culturomics...
Article
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Anthropogenic noise has been shown to alter the transmission environment and distort acoustic signals, prompting vocalizing species to use compensatory mechanisms. Through a meta-analysis we investigated the relative importance of biological and contextual factors predisposing species to shift their singing/calling frequencies in response to anthro...
Article
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Vocalizing animals are known to produce a wide range of species- specific spectral and temporal communication patterns. As a consequence, the acoustic heterogeneity of insect communities is expected to increase with the number of vocalizing species. Using a combination of simulation models and field surveys, we tested the hypotheses that (1) acoust...
Article
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Climate is an important driver of ecological dynamics. However, many quantitative methods still ignore the fact that both ecological and climatic dynamics are inherently non-linear. While temporal variability is commonly measured as the standard deviation of the records in a time-series, temporal determinism and predictability can be measured using...
Article
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Aboveground production in terrestrial plant communities is commonly expressed in amount of carbon, or biomass, per unit surface. Alternatively, expressing production per unit volume allows the comparison of communities by their fundamental capacities in packing carbon. In this work we reanalyzed published data from more than 900 plant communities a...
Article
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Environmental homogenization in coastal ecosystems impacted by human activities may be an important factor explaining the observed decline in fish species richness. We used fish community data (>200 species) from extensive surveys conducted in two biogeographic provinces (extent >1,000 km) in North America to quantify the relationship between fish...
Article
Full-text available
According to two main and non-exclusive scenarios, plant diversity can influence the growing season of vegetation stands through: (i) functional complementarity among species and, (ii) functional selection of species from the regional pool. The objective of this study was to evaluate whether plant species richness prolongs the active photosynthetic...
Preprint
Aboveground production in terrestrial plant communities is commonly expressed in amount of carbon, or biomass, per unit surface. Alternatively, expressing production per unit volume allows the comparison of communities by their fundamental limits in packing carbon. In this work we reanalyzed published data from more than 900 plant communities acros...
Article
Full-text available
Aims Studies that investigate the space-filling heterogeneity of biological structures in plant communities remain scarce. The main objective of this study was to evaluate the relationship between newly developed photographic measures of structural heterogeneity in digital images and plant species composition in the context of a long-term grassland...
Preprint
Loss of species richness in aquatic ecosystems is occurring rapidly and many factors, including habitat heterogeneity, have been suggested to affect the diversity of aquatic communities. We used fish community data (> 200 species) from extensive surveys conducted in two biogeographic provinces (extent > 1000 km) in North America to test the hypothe...
Article
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Ecologists have long focused on local-scale phenomena (i.e. local environment variables) and assumed that spatial processes were unimportant factors influencing both the community structure and the functional diversity of aquatic communities. In this paper we used zooplankton assemblages in a typical large river (St. Lawrence River) as a biological...
Article
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Close-range digital photography is a promising tool for monitoring plant communities, yet this technology has not been used to indicate changes to the compositional and functional characteristics of riparian vegetation buffers in agro-ecosystems. We tested a photographic protocol using image indices to monitor differences in the compositional (spec...
Article
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Es wird angenommen, dass funktionelle Pflanzenmerkmale verantwortlich sind für beobachtete Effekte von Pflanzendiversität auf Ökosystemfunktionen, wodurch sich der Fokus der Biodiversitätsforschung von der Betrachtung der Effekte von Pflanzenartenzahlen hin zu der Betrachtung von Pflanzenmerkmalen in einer Gemeinschaft erweitert hat. Die Berücksich...
Article
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Decades of study have attempted to define a generalized environmentalheterogeneity- biodiversity (EH-BD) relationship, with the traditional MacArthurian nichebased hypothesis remaining as the dominant reference point; i.e., increasing heterogeneity promotes biodiversity by increasing resource opportunities. However, studies have frequently reported...
Article
The first goal of this study was to determine whether morphological variation in the freshwater blenny Salaria fluviatilis results in spatially structured populations distributed around Corsica, France, which would suggest genetically differentiated populations through reproductive isolation by distance. The second goal was to determine whether som...
Article
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Biomass measures are central to estimating secondary productivity and studying how resources are distributed within an ecosystem. Because directly measuring insect biomass is a lengthy process, many authors have resorted to empirical length–dry mass relationships.The objective of this study was to evaluate the relative importance of latitude, clima...
Article
One of the current advances in functional biodiversity research is the move away from short-lived test systems towards the exploration of diversity-ecosystem functioning relationships in structurally more complex ecosystems. In forests, assumptions about the functional significance of tree species diversity have only recently produced a new generat...
Article
Web-crawling approaches, that is, automated programs data mining the internet to obtain information about a particular process, have recently been proposed for monitoring early signs of ecosystem degradation or for establishing crop calendars. However, lack of a clear conceptual and methodological framework has prevented the development of such app...
Article
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Deterministic niche-based processes have been proposed to explain species relative abundance within communities but lead to different predictions: habitat filtering (HF) predicts dominant species to exhibit similar traits while niche differentiation (ND) requires that species have dissimilar traits to coexist. Using a multiple trait-based approach,...
Article
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Plant traits – the morphological, anatomical, physiological, biochemical and phenological characteristics of plants and their organs – determine how primary producers respond to environmental factors, affect other trophic levels, influence ecosystem processes and services and provide a link from species richness to ecosystem functional diversity. T...
Article
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1. While positive effects of biodiversity on temporal stability of communities have been demonstrated in theoretical and empirical studies, diversity–stability relationships at the population level remain poorly understood. 2. We investigated temporal variability of plant populations in experimental grassland plots of varying species richness (1, 2...
Article
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The global geographic distribution of biodiversity and biomes is determined by species-specific physiological tolerances to climatic constraints. Current vegetation models employ empirical bioclimatic relationships to predict present-day vegetation patterns and to forecast biodiversity changes and biome shifts under climatic change. In this paper,...
Article
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Protected areas cover over 12% of the terrestrial surface of Earth, and yet many fail to protect species and ecological processes as originally envisioned. Results of recent studies suggest that a critical reason for this failure is an increasing contrast between the protected lands and the surrounding matrix of often highly altered land cover. We...
Article
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Aim Two of the oldest observations in plant geography are the increase in plant diversity from the poles towards the tropics and the global geographic distribution of vegetation physiognomy (biomes). The objective of this paper is to use a process-based vegetation model to evaluate the relationship between modelled and observed global patterns of p...
Article
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While landscape trajectories are increasingly used for tracking change in processes such as agricultural intensification and urbanization, analyses that combine environmental and human disturbances remain scarce. The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between Shannon evenness, a measure of landscape composition, and spatial conta...
Article
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The diversity–stability hypothesis states that current losses of biodiversity can impair the ability of an ecosystem to dampen the effect of environmental perturbations on its functioning. Using data from a long-term and comprehensive biodiversity experiment, we quantified the temporal stability of 42 variables characterizing twelve ecological func...
Article
Full-text available
The global geographic distribution of biodiversity and biomes is determined by species-specific physiological tolerances to climatic constraints. Current models implement empirical bioclimatic relationships to predict present-day vegetation patterns and to forecast biodiversity changes and biome shifts under climatic change. In this paper, we consi...
Conference Paper
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How plant functional strategies are translated into species abundance in a community is a key question for the estimation of ecosystem functioning along environmental gradients. We address this question using 13 widespread grass species co-occurring in semi-natural mesic grasslands of central France. Plant functional strategies were identified usin...
Article
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The development of ecological indicators for actively monitoring an ecosystem at a high resolution in scale, space and time is a challenge of primary interest. In this context, measures of structural complexity derived from close-range repeat photography may form a part of the solution. Moreover, recent mathematical tools, such as recurrence plots...
Article
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Few methods for quantifying the dynamics of temporal processes are readily applicable to spatially extended systems when equations governing the motion are unknown. The objective of this paper is to illustrate how the MRP-RQA (multivariate recurrence plot-recurrence quantification analysis) approach may serve to characterize ecosystems driven by bo...
Article
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The use of analytical techniques to delineate biogeographical regions is becoming increasingly popular. One recent example, Heikinheimo et al. (Journal of Biogeography, 2007, 34, 1053–1064), applied the k-means clustering algorithm to define the biogeography of the European land mammal fauna. However, they used the Euclidean distance measure to clu...
Article
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A suite of simple metrics that can be used to analyse three-dimensional data sets is presented. We show how these metrics can be applied to raster-based, ecological mosaics sampled over uniform time intervals, such as might be obtained from a series of photographs or from repeated spatial sampling in the field. In these analyses, the concept of a 2...
Article
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Conducting field samples for monitoring ecological dynamics across multiple spatiotemporal scales is a difficult task using standard protocols. One alternative is to measure a restricted set of variables which can serve as an ecological orientor (EO) for quantifying habitat change. The objective of this article is to derive from digital images a me...
Article
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Quantifying the effects of species richness and environmental disturbance on the stability of communities is a long-standing challenge in ecology. In this study, multivariate recurrence analysis was used to assess the dynamical stability of modelled ecological communities subject to random, correlated environmental noise. Based on an analysis of bi...