Veto synchronizes reproduction in masting plants

In the latest study, soon to be published in The American Naturalist, we combined modelling with long-term seed production data in four species to see what drives masting in these species. We had two species (pine and rowan) that can be assigned to a “flowering masting” group, i.e. species where mast seeding is driven by…

Mast-Net kick-off meeting in Liverpool

Last month we met in Liverpool to discuss the details of our collaborative project. Our goal is to assemble two datasets: one on population-level seed production of masting plants, hopefully all over the globe. The second will include individual-level seed production data. We are also going to write a perspective paper on how experiments can…

No terminal investment in rowan

Our newest paper just became available in Annals of Forest Science. We used data from over 250 rowans growing in Carpathian mountains in Poland and investigated the predictions of the Terminal Investment Hypothesis, which suggests that organisms should invest disproportionally into reproduction preceding their death. We found no support. Rather, seed production declined significantly before…

Climate sorts plants responses to weather

Weather is centrally involved in driving mast seeding. However, while the links between meteorological conditions and seeding are well-recognized for some species, but in others consistent correlates have not been found. We used quickly developing masting theory to start solving out this long-lasting mystery. We predicted that climate should strongly modulate the relationship between the…

2018 in numbers

accepted papers: 8 (more were published in 2018, but I’ve counted accepted in 2018), rejection letters: 10 (including 5 desk rejections) – this number is, in fact, larger as I’ve counted only papers where I was the leading author, international travels: 6 (Portugal, Spain, Italy, Australia, Spain, UK), conferences: 2 (Australia, UK), grants submitted: 1…

Radio interview: why masting happens and Lyme disease

Last week I’ve been interviewed by Rafał Regulski from Radio Poznań, talking about why oaks decide to reproduce in some years but not in others, and what are the consequences of masting events on rodent and tick populations. The interview was aired as a part of the cyclic program “Drzwi do lasu” (Forest doors), and…

Geography of damage tolerance in oak: new Annals of Botany paper

The study I’ve done with Raul Bonal and Josep M. Espelta was accepted this week in Annals of Botany. Below, I paste a 100-word summary of the research that will appear in the journal section called “ContentSnapshot”: The assertion that plants at lower latitudes should be better defended against enemies has a long historical basis,…

Weevils go after acorns in mast years: new Ecology paper

One widely accepted fitness advantage of being a masting plant (instead of just producing seeds every year) is the predator satiation. According to this mechanism, masting helps to increase seed survival through starving predators in non-mast years (famine cause the predator population to go down), and sparse predators are easy to satiate in mast years….

Mast-Net funded! Global masting collaboration

Our proposal “MAST-NET: masting responses to climate change and impacts on ecosystems” submitted a few months ago to the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) in the UK just received a recommendation for funding. The project is for an international collaboration focused on assembling global masting datasets, and then using them to answer the whole bunch of…

NSF fellowship to CREAF

Today I have learnt that Polish National Science Foundation granted me a 6-months fellowship to Global Ecology Unit at CREAF-CSIC-UAB (Barcelona) to work at Josep Penuelas lab and with Josep Maria Espelta on different aspects of masting seeding. The main goal of the fellowship is to prepare a ERC strating grant… a huge challenge, accepted! 😉  

Apparent predation and plant invasions

Originally posted on Journal of Ecology Blog:
Michał Bogdziewicz, Nathanael Lichti and Rafał Zwolak recently had their paper about predation and invasions accepted in the journal. You could read more about their paper in the blog post below. Plants throughout the world are dispersed by scatterhoarding animals, including jays, squirrels and chipmunks, wood mice, the…

Masting symposium in Sydney

Last week I was visiting Sydney for the annual Society for Mathematical Biology meeting, that this year was held at the Univesity of Sydney, Australia. Together with Akiko Satake, Dave Kelly, and Yuuya Tachiki we had really productive discussions. What are the main gaps in our knowledge right now? What are the field quick-wins? Can…