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Véronique Helfer

Véronique Helfer
Leibniz Centre for Tropical Marine Research · Department of Ecology

Ph.D.

About

28
Publications
10,596
Reads
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1,726
Citations
Citations since 2016
17 Research Items
742 Citations
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Introduction
My current research focuses on the preservation of mangrove ecosystems and their services. Research interests: mangrove ecosystems; environmental change; species distribution modelling; eDNA/aDNA biomonitoring; biotic interactions; ecosystem processes and services; landscape genetics/genomics; environmental metabolomics; organic matter-dynamics; mangrove microbiome; spatial conservation planning. See: https://www.leibniz-zmt.de/en/marine-tropics-research/who-we-are/veronique-helfer-en.html
Additional affiliations
April 2015 - July 2019
Leibniz Center for Tropical Marine Ecology
Position
  • PostDoc Position
November 2014 - March 2015
Leibniz Centre for Tropical Marine Research (ZMT)
Position
  • PostDoc Position
October 2014 - January 2015
University of Trier
Position
  • Lecturer

Publications

Publications (28)
Article
Full-text available
Protecting existing mangrove forests is a priority for global conservation because of the wide range of services that these coastal forests provide to humankind. Despite the recent reduction in global rates of mangrove loss, high historical loss rates mean that there are at least 800,000 ha globally that are potentially suitable for mangrove re-est...
Article
Full-text available
Highlighting spatiotemporal changes occurring within mangrove habitats at the finest possible scale could contribute fundamental knowledge and data for local sustainable management. This study presents the current situation of the Pichavaram mangrove area, a coastal region of Southeast India prone to both cyclones and reduced freshwater inflow. Bas...
Article
True mangroves are vascular plants (Tracheophyta) that evolved into inhabiting the mid and upper intertidal zone of tropical and subtropical soft-sediment coasts around the world. While several dozens of species are known from the Indo-West Pacific region, the Atlantic-East Pacific region is home to only a mere dozen of true mangrove species, most...
Preprint
Full-text available
Knowledge derived from nucleotide sequence data is increasing in importance in the life sciences, as well as decision making (mainly in biodiversity policy). Metadata standards have been established to facilitate sustainable sequence data management according to the FAIR principles (Findability, Accessibility, Interoperability, Reusability). Here,...
Article
Full-text available
Mangrove forests provide a large variety of ecosystem services (ES) to coastal societies. Using a case study focusing on the Ajuruteua peninsula in Northern Brazil and two ES, food provisioning (ES1) and global climate regulation (ES2), this paper proposes a new framework for quantifying and valuing mangrove ES and allow for their small-scale mappi...
Article
Full-text available
Delineating population boundaries in anthropogenic landscape is of critical importance for domains of biology that are concerned with the ecology, evolution and conservation of species. This remains particularly difficult for species where there is no obvious demarcation of geographical populations and dispersal patterns are poorly known. This is o...
Chapter
Mangrove sediments are particularly rich in organic matter (OM), derived from both autochthonous and allochthonous sources. Despite the recent focus of science and policy on “Blue Carbon,” understanding dynamics and fate of these OM stocks requires much more than only quantifying organic carbon in mangrove sediments. OM of different origins can be...
Chapter
Microorganisms are involved in many processes that support mangrove ecosystem functioning and many of the ecosystem services mangroves provide. Nonetheless, due to the immense diversity of microorganisms and the multitude of biotic interactions they are involved in, it remains a challenge to decipher the keystone species and key drivers of ecosyste...
Chapter
We conducted a literature review to determine the state of the art of hydro- and sediment dynamics modeling studies. We start with a brief overview about mangrove ecosystems while showing various aspects of hydro- and sediment dynamics without claiming exhaustiveness. Since mangrove structures are commonly mimicked using cylindrical stems, papers p...
Article
Mangrove ecosystems provide manifold ecosystems services of ecological and societal relevance for local communities and human populations worldwide. Such complex social-ecological systems call for more interdisciplinary research, the more since they are facing various threats, often human-induced. Based on a bibliographic review (using the Web of S...
Article
Full-text available
Mangrove ecosystems provide important ecological benefits and ecosystem services, including carbon storage and coastline stabilization, but they also suffer great anthropogenic pressures. Microorganisms associated with mangrove sediments and the rhizosphere play key roles in this ecosystem and make essential contributions to its productivity and ca...
Technical Report
Full-text available
Case study for Western (Brazil) and Eastern (Cape Verde, Senegal) tropical Atlantic countries, information on marine and coastal natural resources and their use and exploitation status
Article
Mangroves grow in the coastal and intertidal zones at tropical and subtropical latitudes. It is widely accepted that the establishment, growth and survival of mangrove seedling depend on the environmental conditions such as temperature, tidal regime and hydrodynamics. To date we know that, in cohesionless sediment, the higher the flow velocity the...
Article
Full-text available
The subspecies concept is not only useful to assess the evolutionary history of species and therefore describe their evolutionary potential, but it also has corollaries for defining conservation units and their management. Within Alpine salamanders, the subspecies status of Salamandra atra prenjensis, isolated in the Dinarides from its nominal subs...
Chapter
The conservation of functioning ecosystems worldwide is warranted by the need for reliable and sustainable provision of ecosystem services locally, regionally and globally. Mangroves provide numerous ecosystem services both to local human communities, e.g., coastal protection or food security, and to mankind worldwide, e.g., food security or climat...
Article
Full-text available
Pathways and rates of decomposition of detrital matter partly depend on its chemical composition. Digestive processes of detritivores drive changes in the chemical composition of detritus, and these changes translate into the chemical composition of the organic matter sequestered into soils and sediments. The latter, in turn, determines how stable...
Article
Full-text available
Habitat alteration has been identified as one of the major causes of amphibian decline. In this study, the genetic structure of seven fire salamander subpopulations in the urbanized area of Salzburg (Austria) was investigated based on seven polymorphic microsatellite loci. We combined Bayesian clustering approaches (STRUCTURE, TESS) with the tradit...
Article
Skin swabbing, a minimally invasive DNA sampling method recently developed on adult amphibians, was tested on larvae of fire salamanders (Salamandra salamandra). The quality and quantity of the sampled DNA was evaluated by (i) measuring DNA concentration in DNA extracts, (ii) sequencing part of the mtDNA cytochrome b gene (692 bp) and (iii) genotyp...
Article
Amphibians display wide variations in life-history traits and life cycles that should prove useful to explore the evolution of sex-biased dispersal, but quantitative data on sex-specific dispersal patterns are scarce. Here, we focused on Salamandra atra, an endemic alpine species showing peculiar life-history traits. Strictly terrestrial and vivipa...
Article
Full-text available
The alpine salamander is an emblematic amphibian, endemic to the Alps and the Dinarides. Its subtaxonomy is still debated and we still lack a comprehensive representation of its genetic diversity distribution, which is essential for delineating potential conservation units. A recent phylogeographical study highlighted the presence of several locali...
Article
The first census of the batrachians and reptiles of the Vallon de Nant reserve was undertaken during the Biodiversity Days (5(th) and 6(th), of July 2008). The data confirm the presence of two reptiles, the common lizard largely distributed in the valley and the adder more localised. Four batrachians were observed: The common frog, the common toad,...
Article
Full-text available
Chorus counts are widely used to assess population abundance in breeding anurans. It is however unclear how such counts translate into true population sizes. We monitored chorus activity in two populations of the European tree frog (Hyla arborea) over three years, while simultaneously conducting a capture-mark-recapture (CMR) study on breeding male...
Article
Models predicting species spatial distribution are increasingly applied to wildlife management issues, emphasising the need for reliable methods to evaluate the accuracy of their predictions. As many available datasets (e.g. museums, herbariums, atlas) do not provide reliable information about species absences, several presence-only based analyses...
Article
In order to contribute to the debate about southern glacial refugia used by temperate species and more northern refugia used by boreal or cold-temperate species, we examined the phylogeography of a widespread snake species (Vipera berus) inhabiting Europe up to the Arctic Circle. The analysis of the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) sequence variation in 1...
Article
Abstract Aim, Location Although the alpine mouse Apodemus alpicola has been given species status since 1989, no distribution map has ever been constructed for this endemic alpine rodent in Switzerland. Based on redetermined museum material and using the Ecological-Niche Factor Analysis (ENFA), habitat-suitability maps were computed for A. alpicola,...
Article
This paper compares two habitat-suitability assessing methods, the Ecological Niche Factor Analysis (ENFA) and the Generalised Linear Model (GLM), to see how well they cope with three different scenarios. The main difference between these two analyses is that GLM is based on species presence/absence data while ENFA on presence data only. A virtual...

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Projects (2)
Project
The research mission CDRmare (CDR: Carbon Dioxide Removal) of the German Marine Research Alliance (Deutsche Allianz Meeresforschung - DAM) investigates whether and to what extent the ocean can play a significant role in the removal and storage of CO2 from the atmosphere. It will also consider the linkages with and impacts on the marine environment, Earth system, and society, as well as appropriate approaches for monitoring, attributing, and accounting for marine carbon storage in a changing environment. The research mission will establish relevant assessment criteria and, in the long term, a Marine Carbon Roadmap for the sustainable use of marine carbon storage at regional to global scales, in close dialogue with stakeholders. The DAM research mission CDRmare is composed of six consortia investigating different methods of marine CO2 removal and storage (alkalinisation, blue carbon, artificial upwelling, CCS) in terms of their potential, risks and trade-offs and bringing them together in a transdisciplinary assessment framework. The co-chairs of CDRmare are Prof. Andreas Oschlies (GEOMAR) and Prof. Gregor Rehder (IOW). Funding: 26 Mio. Euro, sponsored by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) Funding Period: Aug 2021 – July 2024 Homepage: https://cdrmare.de/en/
Project
The attention that both scientists and the public (and alongside politicians) are paying to mangroves and their fate has increased rapidly in recent years. In parallel, research on mangroves has changed from purely descriptive floristics and faunistics some decades ago to more mechanistic and experimental approaches. These changes in research activities tremendously enhanced our knowledge and understanding of mangrove ecosystems and processes at different scales, from local to global. It seems about time to pause for a moment and recapitulate what we have discovered thus far, what we have learned recently—but also what we still do not understand and what we want to achieve. This Special Issue on Advances in Mangrove Ecology aims to gather together the most up-to-date knowledge on mangrove ecology from this year. We invite colleagues from all over the world to submit their research on all aspects of mangrove ecology, including studies on all kinds of organisms (flora, fauna, microbiota) and compartments (e.g., sediment, porewater) in mangroves, encompassing all spatial and organizational levels (individual, population, community, ecosystem and beyond). We preferentially welcome experimental or manipulative studies, but will also consider hypothesis-driven observational studies, as well as theoretical/literature compilations and meta-analyses, ideally covering larger areas or longer time spans. We expect all contributions to advance our overall understanding of mangrove ecosystems.