Juli G. Pausas's research while affiliated with Spanish National Research Council and other places

Publications (257)

Article
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Many animals survive wildfires; however, the mechanisms used to detect and respond to fire have been poorly studied. Sensory cues like sight and sound are used to recognize threats (e.g. predators) and elicit escape responses in prey. Similarly, these cues might be used to detect an approaching wildfire. We tested whether the western fence lizard,...
Article
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A fresh look at seed dormancy reveals three pathways enable seeds to germinate Seeds are fine-tuned to accept only certain environmental stimuli to break dormancy and cause them to germinate at once or allow them to germinate later. Some seeds germinate as soon as the soil is moist, warm and aerated. Their dormancy had been forced on them by lack...
Article
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1. Many internal (inherent) and environmental (imposed) factors control seed dormancy and germination that we divide into three basic dormancy‐release pathways: Maternal structures and embryo physiology control inherent dormancy that is broken by various types of scarification and physiological changes, followed by imposed‐dormancy release when the...
Article
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Here we provide the ‘Global Spectrum of Plant Form and Function Dataset’, containing species mean values for six vascular plant traits. Together, these traits –plant height, stem specific density, leaf area, leaf mass per area, leaf nitrogen content per dry mass, and diaspore (seed or spore) mass – define the primary axes of variation in plant form...
Article
Fire has been an ecosystem process since plants colonized land over 400 million years ago. Many diverse traits provide a fitness benefit following fires, and these adaptive traits vary with the fire regime. Some of these traits enhance fire survival, while others promote recruitment in the postfire environment. Demonstrating that these traits are f...
Article
Wildfires are a natural disturbance in many ecosystems. Consequently, plant species have acquired traits that allow them to resist and regenerate in an environment with recurrent fires. A key trait in fire‐prone ecosystems is the age at first reproduction (maturity age); populations of non‐resprouting species cannot persist when the fire interval i...
Preprint
Natural fire regimes are currently changing worldwide. These alterations may affect not only plant and animal species but also their interactions. Recently, a few studies have shown the effects of different disturbances on pollination through changes on plant fragrances mediating this interaction, yet no studies have focused on the effects of fires...
Article
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Background. Little is known about the interaction between predators and wildfires, in part because the large home range and scarcity of predators make their study difficult, and their response is strongly species-specific. Aims. In this paper, we study, for the first time, the effect of wildfire on the behaviour of Bonelli’s eagles (Aquila fasciata...
Article
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Climate is by no means the only driver of seed dormancy, nor is bet-hedging the only mechanism that shapes dormancy. Correlative studies based on climate datasets are unlikely to capture the diversity of adaptive strategies plants acquired to maximize their fitness; disturbances and species interactions also need to beconsidered. Despite the ubiqui...
Conference Paper
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A pesar del amplio conocimiento sobre la vulnerabilidad de los bosques mediterráneos a incendios, la variación espacial y temporal de los combustibles sigue siendo una cuestión raramente estudiada. En este estudio, partimos de la hipótesis de que la sensibilidad de los bosques al fuego responde principalmente a la variación en la carga de combustib...
Article
The aim was to characterize fire regimes and estimate fire regime parameters (area burnt, size, intensity, season, patchiness and pyrodiversity) at broad spatial scales using remotely sensed individual‐fire data. Western part of the Palaearctic realm (i.e., Europe, North Africa and the Near East). 2001–2021. Initially, I divided the study area into...
Poster
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Wildfires can either mediate or endanger forest ecosystem services and ecological processes. If left uncontrolled, wildfires can cause severe damage and negative cascading effects. For example, atmospheric pollution, health issues, soil erosion, landslides, biotic damages, and ecosystem degradation. The undergoing climate changes across Europe and...
Article
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‘Megafire’ is an emerging concept commonly used to describe fires that are extreme in terms of size, behaviour, and/or impacts, but the term’s meaning remains ambiguous. We sought to resolve ambiguity surrounding the meaning of ‘megafire’ by conducting a structured review of the use and definition of the term in several languages in the peer‐review...
Article
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The invasive grass‐fire cycle is a widely documented feedback phenomenon in which invasive grasses increase vegetation flammability and fire frequency, resulting in further invasion and compounded effects on fire regimes. Few studies have examined the role of short‐term adaptation in driving the invasive grass‐fire cycle, despite invasive species o...
Data
These are the figures associated with the Supplementary Information
Article
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51 page supplementary to Pausas and Lamont 2022 Fire-related seed dormancy release - a global synthesis
Article
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Background and Aims In Mediterranean ecosystems, the heat shock of wildfire disrupts physical seed dormancy in many plant species. This triggers germination in the post-fire environment where seedling establishment is optimal due to decreased competition and increased resource availability. However, to maintain the soil seedbank until a fire occurs...
Article
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Seed dormancy varies greatly between species, clades, communities, and regions. We propose that fireprone ecosystems create ideal conditions for the selection of seed dormancy as fire provides a mechanism for dormancy release and postfire conditions are optimal for germination. Thus, fire‐released seed dormancy should vary in type and abundance und...
Article
Ecology and evolutionary biology have focused on how organisms fit the environment. Less attention has been given to the idea that organisms can also modify their environment, and that these modifications can feed back to the organism, thus providing a key factor for their persistence and evolution. There are at least three independent lines of evi...
Preprint
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Türkiye, yaklaşık 203,000 hektar alanın yandığı 2021'de orman yangınlarından çok fazla etkilendi (1). Yanan alanların çoğu Akdeniz Pinus brutia (Kızılçam) ormanlarıyla kaplıydı ve şiddetli yangınlar çamların çoğunun ölümüne yol açtı (2). Bununla birlikte, bu ağaç türü, yangının ısısı tohumları serbest bırakana kadar onları içinde tutan belli sayıda...
Article
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Large mammal herbivores are important drivers of plant evolution and vegetation patterns, but the extent to which plant trait and ecosystem geography currently reflect the historical distribution of extinct megafauna is unknown. We address this question for South and Central America (Neotropical biogeographic realm) by compiling data on plant defenc...
Article
Extreme climate events, together with anthropogenic land use changes, have led to the rise of megafires (i.e., fires at the top of the frequency size distribution) in many world regions. Megafires imply that the centre of the burned area is far from the unburnt; thus, recolonization may be critical for species with low dispersal abilities such as r...
Article
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Recent extreme wildfire seasons in several regions have been associated with exceptionally hot, dry conditions, made more probable by climate change. Much research has focused on extreme fire weather and its drivers, but natural wildfire regimes – and their interactions with human activities – are far from being comprehensively understood. There is...
Article
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Wildfires are a natural disturbance in many ecosystems. However, their effect on biotic interactions has been poorly studied. Fire consumes the vegetation and the litter layer where many parasites spend part of their life cycles. We hypothesize that wildfires reduce habitat availability for parasites with consequent potential benefits for hosts. We...
Article
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Changes in climate, land use, and land management impact the occurrence and severity of wildland fires in many parts of the world. This is particularly evident in Europe, where ongoing changes in land use have strongly modified fire patterns over the last decades. Although satellite data by the European Forest Fire Information System provide large-...
Article
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Tropical forests and savannas can co-occur in a range of macro-environmental conditions. In these conditions, disturbances and resource availability are thought to control savanna and forest transitions, although the mechanisms involved are disputed. We hypothesized that, in Neotropical regions where fire activity is high, fire is the main factor c...
Article
No single factor produces wildfires; rather, they occur when fire thresholds (ignitions, fuels, and drought) are crossed. Anomalous weather events may lower these thresholds and thereby enhance the likelihood and spread of wildfires. Climate change increases the frequency with which some of these thresholds are crossed, extending the duration of th...
Article
Mediterranean forests are prone to fire and highly diverse in environmental conditions, species composition, and forest structure. While much is known about fire hazard and forest responses to fire in Mediterranean climate regions, our understanding of the spatial distribution of fuel characteristics and their dynamics remains incomplete. We hypoth...
Article
Under global change, how biological diversity and ecosystem services are maintained in time is a fundamental question. Ecologists have long argued about multiple mechanisms by which local biodiversity might control the temporal stability of ecosystem properties. Accumulating theories and empirical evidence suggest that, together with different popu...
Article
The evolutionary role of fire in animals has been poorly explored. Reptiles use sensory cues, such as smell (chemoreception), to detect threats and flee. In Mediterranean ecosystems, fire is a threat faced by reptiles. We hypothesized that the Mediterranean lizard Psammodromus algirus recognizes the threat of fire by detecting the smoke, which trig...
Article
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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
The Yunnan Province of China is wet and warm enough to support magnificent forests. However, many mountains in the region are covered by a shrubland formation dominated by an unusual pine, the shrubby and multi‐stemmed Pinus yunnanensis (Yunnan pine; Fig. 1). This formation is natural, and not the product of forest degradation; and fire appears to...
Article
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Motivation Trait data are fundamental to the quantitative description of plant form and function. Although root traits capture key dimensions related to plant responses to changing environmental conditions and effects on ecosystem processes, they have rarely been included in large‐scale comparative studies and global models. For instance, root trai...
Article
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Fire's growing impacts on ecosystems Fire has played a prominent role in the evolution of biodiversity and is a natural factor shaping many ecological communities. However, the incidence of fire has been exacerbated by human activity, and this is now affecting ecosystems and habitats that have never been fire prone or fire adapted. Kelly et al. rev...
Article
Aim Fire is a natural disturbance in many ecosystems throughout the world where plant populations can persist by the resprouting of individuals and/or by recruiting from seeds. We evaluated the post‐fire regeneration response for 41 coexisting species, including grasses, forbs, and shrubs, from an open Cerrado community (campo sujo) in Central Braz...
Article
Understanding the determinants of post–fire regeneration is critical for determining an appropriate restoration program following fire disturbances. However, studies addressing the drivers of post–fire regeneration of forests in monsoon climate are rare. This study explored the temporal and spatial variations of post–fire forest regeneration in the...
Article
Premise: Resource availability affects biomass allocation in ways that could influence plant responses to disturbance such as fire. This is important because fire also varies across landscapes in ways that are correlated to resource availability. We hypothesized that plants growing in landscape microsites with a shortage of nutrients and water all...
Article
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Serotiny is the prolonged storage of seeds in closed cones or fruits held within the crown of woody plants. It is widespread throughout fireprone vegetation with a predominantly winter rainfall, especially in Mediterrnanean-type ecosystems (MTEs). Nonstorage is a feature of fireprone vegetation with summer-dominant rainfall or nonfireprone vegetati...
Data
Data supporting Fire as a selective agent for both serotiny and nonserotiny over space and time
Preprint
Full-text available
Motivation Trait data are fundamental to quantitatively describe plant form and function. Although root traits capture key dimensions related to plant responses to changing environmental conditions and effects on ecosystem processes, they have rarely been included in large-scale comparative studies and global models. For instance, root traits remai...
Article
Plants are the largest biomass component of most terrestrial ecosystems, and litter decomposition is considered the dominant process by which nutrients return to plants. We show that in terrestrial ecosystems, there are three major pathways by which plant biomass is degraded into forms that release nutrients again available to plants: microbial dec...
Article
Aim Biomes can diverge substantially in plant functional traits and disturbance regimens among regions. Given that Neotropical and Afrotropical regions have contrasting histories of the megafauna (because of the Holocene megafaunal extinction in the Neotropics), we hypothesize that they should harbour plants with different traits in relationship to...
Article
In recent decades, changes in fire activity have been observed in Europe. Fires can have large consequences for the provisioning of ecosystem services and for human well-being. Therefore, understanding the drivers of fire occurrence and improving the predictive capability of fire occurrence models is of utmost importance. So far, most studies have...
Article
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1.Fire is a powerful ecological and evolutionary force that regulates organismal traits, population sizes, species interactions, community composition, carbon and nutrient cycling, and ecosystem function. It also presents a rapidly growing societal challenge, due to both increasingly destructive wildfires and fire exclusion in fire‐dependent ecosys...
Preprint
Full-text available
Disturbances fundamentally alter ecosystem functions; yet predicting the impacts of disturbances remains a key scientific challenge. The study of disturbances is ubiquitous across almost all ecological disciplines, yet varying terminology and methodologies have led to the lack of an agreed upon, cross-disciplinary foundation for discussing and quan...
Article
There is growing interest in the application of alternative stable state (ASS) theory to explain major vegetation patterns of the world. Here, we introduce the theory as applied to the puzzle of nonforested (open) biomes growing in climates that are warm and wet enough to support forests (alternative biome states, ABSs). Long thought to be the prod...
Article
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Plant traits—the morphological, anatomical, physiological, biochemical and phenological characteristics of plants—determine how plants respond to environmental factors, affect other trophic levels, and influence ecosystem properties and their benefits and detriments to people. Plant trait data thus represent the basis for a vast area of research sp...
Article
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During the last decades, climate and land use changes led to an increased prevalence of megafires in Mediterranean-type climate regions (MCRs). Here, we argue that current wildfire management policies in MCRs are destined to fail. Focused on fire suppression, these policies largely ignore ongoing climate warming and landscape-scale buildup of fuels...
Article
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Background Fire responses of species in arid environments have only been scarcely studied. We studied four species ( Dasyliron lucidum Zucc., Juniperus deppeana Steud., Echinocactus platyacanthus Link & Otto, and Agave potatorum Zucc.) in the Tehuacán-Cuicatlán Biosphere Reserve, Mexico. The objectives were to describe and quantify survival and res...
Article
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Bastin et al .’s estimate (Reports, 5 July 2019, p. 76) that tree planting for climate change mitigation could sequester 205 gigatonnes of carbon is approximately five times too large. Their analysis inflated soil organic carbon gains, failed to safeguard against warming from trees at high latitudes and elevations, and considered afforestation of s...
Article
Plant modularity traits relevant to functions of on-spot persistence, space occupancy, resprouting after disturbance, as well as resource storage, sharing, and foraging have been underrepresented in functional ecology so far. This knowledge gap exists for multiple reasons. First, these functions and related traits have been considered less importan...
Article
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Many terrestrial ecosystems are fire prone, such that their composition and structure are largely due to their fire regime. Regions subject to regular fire have exceptionally high levels of species richness and endemism, and fire has been proposed as a major driver of their diversity, within the context of climate, resource availability and environ...
Article
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Aim Understanding fire effects on pollinators is critical in the context of fire regime changes and the global pollination crisis. Through a systematic and quantitative review of the literature, we provide the first global assessment of pollinator responses to fire. We hypothesize that pollinators increase after fire and during the early postfire s...
Article
Wildfires are often perceived as destructive disturbances, but we propose that when integrating evolutionary and socioecological factors, fires in most ecosystems can be understood as natural processes that provide a variety of benefits to humankind. Wildfires generate open habitats that enable the evolution of a diversity of shade‐intolerant plant...
Preprint
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Plant's exquisite variation in floral traits at a macroevolutionary level is often interpreted as the result of adaptations to pollinators. However, field studies measuring pollinator-mediated evolution of flowers often find little evidence for strong selection. A possible explanation is the prevalence of periods of stasis, when selection on flower...
Article
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Background and aims: In many flammable ecosystems, physically dormant seeds show dormancy-break patterns tied to fire, but the link between heat shock and germination in the tropical savannas of Africa and South America remains controversial. Seed heat tolerance is important, preventing seed mortality during fire passage, and is usually predicted...
Article
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To improve predictions of the future of ecosystems in a changing world, it is necessary to consider fine-scale processes. We propose that for the Mediterranean region (a hotspot of climate change and biodiversity), there are three local processes that have often been overlooked in predictive models and that are key to understanding vegetation chang...
Article
Fire is a necessary ecosystem process in many biomes and is best viewed as a natural disturbance that is beneficial to ecosystem functioning. However, increasingly, we are seeing human interference in fire regimes that alters the historical range of variability for most fire parameters and results in vegetation shifts. Such perturbations can affect...
Chapter
This study area is located in the eastern littoral of the Iberian Peninsula; its importance resides in its Mediterranean ecosystem, complex topography, extensive land use changes, and intensive forest fires history. The study is done at the landscape level, covering a wide area for an extended period of time. This work uses Geographic Information S...
Article
1.Alexander von Humboldt is a key figure in the history of ecology and biogeography who contributed to shape what is today ecology, as well as the environmentalist movement. His observation that the world's vegetation varies systematically with climate was one of his many contributions to science. 2.Here we question to what extent Humboldt's view b...
Article
Despite the existing large body of research on plant‐animal interactions, plant research and animal research are still relatively independent and asymmetrical in relation to disturbance. Animals and plants are likely to have different fire responses, yet biodiversity studies in relation to disturbance may benefit from a more integrated functional a...
Article
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Conserving animals and plants in fire-prone landscapes requires evidence of how fires affect modified ecosystems. Despite progress on this front, fire ecology is restricted by a dissonance between two dominant paradigms: ‘fire mosaics’ and ‘functional types’. The fire mosaic paradigm focuses on animal responses to fire events and spatial variation,...
Data
Functional trait data of BROT 2.0 database are accessible at Figshare: https://figshare.com/collections/BROT_2_0_A_functional_trait_database_for_Mediterranean_Basin_plants/3843841
Article
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Functional trait databases are emerging as crucial tools for a wide range of ecological studies across the world. Here, we provide a database of functional traits for vascular plant species of the Mediterranean Basin. The database includes 25,764 individual records of 44 traits from 2,457 plant taxa distributed in 119 taxonomic families. This datab...
Article
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Background and aims: Assessing the resilience of plant-animal interactions is critical to understanding how plant communities respond to habitat disturbances. Most ecosystems experience some level of natural disturbance (e.g. wildfires) to which many organisms are adapted. Wildfires have structured biotic communities for millennia; however, the ef...
Article
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Despite decades of broad interest in global patterns of biodiversity, little attention has been given to understanding the remarkable levels of plant diversity present in the world’s five Mediterranean-type climate (MTC) regions, all of which are considered to be biodiversity hotspots. Comprising the Mediterranean Basin, California, central Chile,...
Data
Abundance of Protaetia morio (top) and P. oblonga (bottom) at each site (Andilla and Cortes). Values are mean number of individuals accumulated in a pitfall in 75 days for 2013 and 2014, in the unburnt area (green), in the burnt area close to the limit with the unburnt (Edge, yellow) and in the centre of the burnt area (Center, orange), separated b...