How does the order in which species arrive shape the trajectory of a community, and how to climate change and species invasions alter these dynamics?
When a plant community develops anew (community assembly) the order in which species arrive can shape what that community will ultimately look like. In general, arriving early can be beneficial, but who arrives first and how helpful that is can be driven by both the climate, and the origin of the species (whether it is native or not). My lab is currently working to understand how nonnative species and warming temperatures interact to shape community assembly dynamics in our natural areas. Specifically, we’re exploring whether warming will speed up how quickly nonnative plants arrive at a site, and whether these changes will increase the abundance of nonnative species. We’re also exploring how these dynamics can be used during restoration to help create and maintain healthy and resilient ecosystems.
climate change, invasion, community assembly