1 Data for biodiversity change assessment ▶
Full title: Biodiversity change in Central Europe: how to make use of citizen science, historical surveys and big data?

Chairs: Diana Bowler, Aletta Bonn, Helge Bruelheide, Florian Jansen

Contact: diana.bowler@idiv.de

Biodiversity monitoring data have revealed large changes in species’ abundances and distributions within many parts of Europe during the past century. However, national-scale standardized data are only available for select taxa (such as birds and butterflies). Monitoring programs for other taxa tend to be more patchy, in both space and time. To make a comprehensive assessment of how biological communities have changed over time, ecologists are increasingly drawing on a broader range of data sources than only classical long-term standardized monitoring. For instance, opportunistic citizen science data cover a much larger range of taxa than structured data; moreover, they reach further back in time and cover a large geographic extent. Resurveys at locations of historical surveys have also been applied to test hypotheses about biodiversity change. Further data sources appropriate to study past change may include eDNA and historical literature.
In this session, we will share research findings based on different data sources to advance our understanding of how biodiversity has changed within central Europe. We are especially interested in studies that focus on the statistical challenges of the data analysis. Biodiversity change may include species’ abundance, distribution, phenology as well as community composition or biomass, of any taxa. We hope to illustrate the massive potential of synthesis of the existing available data to document and understand the impacts of anthropogenic environmental change on biodiversity.
2 Urban ecosystems ▶
Full title: Urban ecosystems: challenges, potentials and solutions

Chairs: Lena Neuenkamp, Roland Schröder, Leonie K Fischer, Valentin Klaus

Contact: lena.neuenkamp@ut.ee

In times of massively expanding cities and shrinking space for biodiversity in rural areas, urban habitats more and more serve as places that can—or need to—support biodiversity. Moreover, integrating ecosystem services and wildlife into cities is increasingly seen as one of the relevant strategies to enhance quality of life in future cities. In this regard, the multiple benefits of urban greenspace have been reported and their general value for biodiversity is emphasized. However, urban ecosystems differ strongly from natural ones due to their specific anthropogenic context. This highlights the necessity to develop specific approaches when dealing with wildlife in cities. The urban matrix is hereby a strong driver of urban biodiversity, including both environmental and socio-economic factors. Likewise, supporting biodiversity and ecosystem services in cities needs to account for the intensive use of urban green by the human city population, calling for an involvement of the urban population when designing urban habitats. This session aims to bring together current practical knowledge and innovative research that deals with the challenges and potentials of today’s urban areas. We invite contributions that span from basic research and theoretical concepts of urban nature to applied and transdisciplinary work in the field of urban ecology.
3 Synthesis of large-scale biodiversity patterns ▶
Full title: Macroecology and Biogeography: Understanding generalities that shape the phylogenetic, functional and taxonomic diversity on earth

Chairs: Stefan Pinkert, Manuel Jonas Steinbauer

Contact: StefanPinkert@posteo.de

Aiming to understand and predict biodiversity patterns across large spatial, temporal and taxonomic scales, macroecology has become a flourishing ecological discipline at the intersection of community ecology, biogeography, functional ecology and evolutionary ecology. Because large-scale approaches simplify ecological detail and exceptions, macroecology is predestined for discovering the laws and rules that govern the biodiversity on earth: the big picture. With our session we want to provide a forum for presenting novel developments in macroecology and large-scale biogeography and discuss classical patterns as well as processes that shape large-scale patterns of the phylogenetic, functional and taxonomic diversity. Examples for topics include global island biogeography, trait-based ecology, movement ecology, ecophysiology and global change biology at large spatial or temporal scales. Contributions may be empirical, theoretical or both. We specifically encourage studies that aim to draw synthesis across different taxa, regions or facets of biodiversity. We are convinced that such synthesis is needed to understand the fundamental evolutionary and ecological processes that generate and maintain the diversity of life on Earth, which ultimately helps to guide large-scale conservation priority setting.
4 Ecological stoichiometry ▶
Full title: Ecological stoichiometry - a unifying theory across ecosystem compartments

Chairs: Ute Hamer, Till Kleinebecker, David Ott

Contact: ute.hamer@uni-muenster.de

Ecological stoichiometry is a powerful tool to improve the mechanistic understanding of nutrient dynamics and related ecosystem functions across ecosystem compartments. The growth of organisms, the structure of food webs and the cycling of nutrients are regulated by the balance or imbalance of multiple chemical elements. The input of nutrients into terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems is increasing globally and this is projected to accelerate in the next decades. Thus, understanding the complex interactions between several co-occurring above- and belowground matter transformation processes towards changes in nutrient resources will enable us to predict the response of ecosystems towards global change phenomena. We welcome contributions from a broad range of ecological disciplines (e.g. plant ecology, animal ecology, soil ecology, marine ecology, ecohydrology).
5 Niche concept ▶
Full title: Theoretical and empirical approaches to enhance our current niche concept

Chairs: Oliver Krüger, Jürgen Gadau

Contact: oliver.krueger@uni-bielefeld.de

Over the last two decades, individualisation has emerged as a powerful concept in both behaviour and ecology. Whether indiviodual niche specialisation or even niche construction, such concepts have been regarded as important, critical and overlooked components of both evolutionary as well as ecological processes. These views are intensively and critically debated within the scientific community. In this symposium, we want to invite speakers who will present both theoretical and empirical aspects of recent modifications of a corner stone of ecological theory: the niche concept.
6 Water in plants ▶
Full title: Water in Plants - mechanisms, fluxes and experiments from the leaf to the ecosystem

Chairs: Marco M. Lehmann, Bernhard Schuldt, Thorsten Grams

Contact: marco.lehmann@wsl.ch

Water is a key factor determining the structure and function of plants and ecosystems. Questions regarding plant and ecosystem water relations, the impact of water availability on plant growth and ecosystem biogeochemistry as well as impacts of future climatic changes such as increases in frequency and intensity of severe drought and heat events on ecosystem functions remain largely unanswered. This session brings together researchers investigating plant water relations across scales from organs to whole plant, stand and ecosystem level. We invite contributions covering plant hydraulics and processes related to or affected by water uptake via roots and leaves, transport, transpiration as well as their control mechanisms, from both observational studies and experimental manipulations. Modeling studies scaling these processes and novel developments to trace water dynamics in the soil-plant-atmosphere continuum are also welcome. This session aims at elucidating structural, functional and physiological responses of plants to their environments spanning from eco-physiological to flux based approaches from different fields. We plan to assemble a group of scientists who are willing to step out of their disciplinary comfort zone and to discuss emergent topics from organ to ecosystem levels in the scope of climate change.
7 Conservation & restoration ▶
Full title: Conservation & restoration

Chairs: Anna Bucharova, Nina Farwig, Johannes Kollmann

Contact: Anna. lampei-bucharova@uni-muenster.de

According to the recent IPBES report, human-caused habitat degradation is the main driver of biodiversity loss. Scientist urge to take actions that will halt or even reverse this negative trend. This is necessary not only to protect biodiversity for its intrinsic value but especially for the ecosystem services that nature provides to humanity. The actions supporting biodiversity range from traditional nature conservation that protects species, habitats, and their functionality, to ecological restoration that actively re-creates functional ecosystems. This session aims to provide a stage for researchers working along the complex conservation-restoration gradient, with the goal to illustrate current topics, emerging challenges, and novel solutions in current conservation and/or restoration of biodiversity in Europe and beyond.
8 Naturschutzpraxis trifft Wissenschaft ▶
Full title: Naturschutzpraxis trifft Wissenschaft – Erhaltung und Renaturierung von Offenlandlebensräumen, Auen und Mooren

Chairs: Kathrin Kiehl, Norbert Hölzel, Ilona Leyer, Gert Rosenthal, Nils Stanik

Contact: k.kiehl@hs-osnabrueck.de

Artenreiche Offenlandlebensräume wie Mager- und Trockenrasen sowie Auen und Moore sind aufgrund von Landnutzungsänderungen selten geworden und außerhalb von Schutzgebieten weitgehend verschwunden. Die noch vorhandenen Reliktflächen weisen oft einen schlechten Erhaltungszustand auf. Es ist dringend notwendig, geeignete Naturschutz- und Renaturierungsstrategien für diese Ökosysteme zu identifizieren und umzusetzen, was auch die kritische Überprüfung etablierter Methoden vor dem Hintergrund globaler Umweltveränderungen mit einschließt. Dabei ist ein enger Austausch zwischen Wissenschaft und Praxis unerlässlich. Mit dieser deutschsprachigen Session wollen wir Kolleginnen und Kollegen aus Naturschutzpraxis und Wissenschaft zusammenbringen, um Ergebnisse aus Naturschutz- und Renaturierungsprojekten vorzustellen und zu diskutieren. Diese sollen auf wissenschaftlichen Monitoring- und Begleituntersuchungen zur Erfolgskontrolle beruhen und eine evidenzbasierte Diskussion ermöglichen. Themen umfassen Konzepte, Verfahren und Maßnahmen u.a. zur Wiederansiedlung naturraumtypischer Offenlandökosyteme und –arten, zur Offenhaltung der Landschaft und der Renaturierung von Feuchtgebieten. Für Teilnehmer/innen, die ausschließlich für diesen Tag anreisen, wird eine ermäßigte Tagungsgebühr erhoben. Der thematische Rahmen der Session ist bewusst breit gehalten. Je nach thematischem Schwerpunkt der eingereichten Beiträge wird diese Session ggf. in Sub-Sessions unterteilt.
9 Urban air pollution ▶
Full title: Urban Air Pollution: Zwei Sitzungen während der GfÖ-Tagung in Münster, 9.-13. September 2019

Chairs: Prof. Dr Andreas Held, Prof. Dr. Otto Klemm, Dr. Bastian Paas

Contact: held@tu-berlin.de

Science Meeting, oral and poster presentations in English language
Open, peer-reviewed scientific session on Urban Air Pollution. We invite scientists and practitioners in the fields of environmental meteorology and air pollution control that focus on topics such as atmospheric chemistry, biometeorology, pollutant dispersion, and health effects within urban landscapes. We foster high quality research results derived from both observations and model simulations. We wish for a broad overview on the topic with state-of-the-art contributions reflecting the multi-methodological approaches to assess urban air pollution dynamics on various spatial and temporal scales.

Diskussionsbühne, “Town Hall”-Format mit eingeladenen Gästen, in deutscher Sprache:
Luftverschmutzung in der Stadt: Was läuft schief?
Dienstag, 10. September 2019, 16:30-18:10 Uhr
“Science meets practice”: Wie konnte es zur hitzigen Diskussion um Luftverschmutzung in Innenstädten kommen? Drohen weitere Fahrverbote wegen Grenzwertüberschreitungen? Gibt es neue Erkenntnisse? Haben sich Wissenschaftler in der Vergangenheit laut genug geäußert? Diese Fragen eröffnen eine Diskussion um Luftreinhaltung in Innenstädten. Eingeladene Gäste aus Umweltbehörden, Automobilindustrie, Rechtsprechung, Kommunen und Bundespolitik geben kurze Eingangs-Statements und stellen sich anschließend einer moderierten Diskussion mit dem Publikum. Keine Podiumsdiskussion im klassischen Sinn. Teilnehmer und Teilnehmerinnen der GfÖ-Tagung fragen nach. Rege Teilnahme durch das Publikum erwünscht!
10 Insektenschutzprogramm Deutschland ▶
Full title: Das deutsche Insektenschutz-Aktionsprogramm – was kann es bewirken, wo muss die Wissenschaft helfen?

Chairs: Carsten Neßhöver, Ilka Dege

Contact: carsten.nesshoever@umweltrat.de

Das Thema Insektenschutz ist durch die Diskussionen um ein Bienensterben durch Pflanzenschutzmittel, die „Krefelder-Studie“ zum Verlust der Insekten-Biomasse in deutschen Schutzgebieten, und zuletzt durch das Volksbegehren Artenvielfalt in Bayern hoch im öffentlichen Bewusstsein und auf der politischen Agenda. Das Bundesumweltministerium wird hierzu im Sommer 2019 ein Aktionsprogramm vorlegen, das bereits im Entwurfsstadium zu intensiven Diskussionen zwischen verschiedenen Interessen geführt hat. Im Kern geht es dabei um Maßnahmen, die vor allem in der Landwirtschaft ansetzen und in denen aus der ökologischen Forschung seit langem bekannte Defizite der Agrarlandschaft (Verlust von Strukturelementen wie Hecken und Säumen) und landwirtschaftlichen Praxis (Einsatz von Nährstoffen und Pflanzenschutzmitteln) aufgegriffen werden. Die Session hat das Ziel, das im September voraussichtlich vorliegende Aktionsprogramm kritisch anzuschauen, und aus verschiedenen Blickwinkeln zu analysieren: • Sind die geplanten Maßnahmen zielgerichtet und flächenwirksam? • Werden die richtigen Anreize gesetzt und die richtigen Akteure adressiert? • Gibt es substanzielles Monitoringkonzept, dass eine Zielerreichung nachprüfbar macht? • Welche Bedarfe lassen sich über die Beteiligung am Monitoring hinaus für die Wissenschaft ableiten? Hierzu wird zunächst das Aktionsprogramm kurz vorgestellt, anschließen sollen verschiedene Sprecherinnen und Sprecher die oben genannten Fragen reflektieren. In einer folgenden Podiumsdiskussion soll vor allem der Bedarf für die Rolle der ökologischen Forschung gemeinsam mit dem Publikum diskutiert werden.
11 Naturschutzpraxis im Rahmen von „LIFE Natur“ ▶
Full title: Umsetzung von NATURA 2000 in der Praxis: Schutz der Arten und Lebensräume der FFH- Richtlinie in der Europäischen Union mit Hilfe des Förderinstruments „LIFE Natur“

Chairs: Dr. Sebastian Schmidt, Dr. Martina Raffel, Thomas Kutter

Contact: sebastian.schmidt@brms.nrw.de

Das Symposium soll zum einen aktuelle Herausforderungen bei der Umsetzung von Natura 2000 in Deutschland thematisieren und zum anderen praktische Beispiele aus der Umsetzung von Maßnahmen durch das EU-Förderinstrument „LIFE“ zeigen. Der Förderbereich "LIFE Natur und Biodiversität" dient dem Schutz von Arten und Lebensräumen gemeinschaftlicher Bedeutung. Das Programm unterstützt dabei vor allem die Errichtung und das Management des europäischen Schutzgebietsnetzes Natura 2000. Für den ersten Teil des Symposiums sind als Vortragende behördliche Vertreter aus Bundes- und Länderebene vorgesehen, um aktuelle Entwicklungen sowie Chancen und Herausforderungen bei der Umsetzung von Natura 2000 in einem übergeordneten Kontext zu beleuchten. Für den zweiten Teil sind Vertreter ausgewählter LIFE-Projekte vorgesehen, die aus der Praxis der Umsetzung berichten. Ein besonderes Augenmerk soll auf das Integrierte LIFE-Projekt „Atlantische Sandlandschaften“ gelegt werden, das erste integrierte LIFE-Projekt im Förderbereich Natur in Deutschland. Das Projekt zielt darauf ab, die Erhaltungszustände der FFH-Lebensräume und -arten in der atlantischen biogeographischen Region in Nordrhein-Westfalen und Niedersachsen zu verbessern. Neben dem konzeptionellen Ansatz zur Abstimmung und Verbesserung der Umsetzung von NATURA 2000 in allen Bundesländern der atlantischen Region werden unter Einbeziehung unterschiedlichster Akteure konkrete Maßnahmen zur Verbesserung der Erhaltungszustände ausgewählter Lebensraumtypen und Arten umgesetzt. Es wird so ein Schulterschluss zwischen behördlichem und praktischem Naturschutz angestrebt, um mögliche Naturschutzerfolge auch auf nationaler beziehungsweise biogeographischer Ebene sichtbar zu machen. Darüber hinaus sollen auch traditionelle LIFE-Projekte, die den Schutz einer bestimmten Region, typischer Lebensraumtypen oder einzelner Pflanzen- und Tierarten oder -gruppen zum Ziel haben, vorgestellt werden. In den Vorträgen sollen Beispiele aus der praktischen Umsetzung der Maßnahmen präsentiert und diskutiert werden. Dabei werden konzeptionelle, bürokratisch-formale und praxisbezogene Aspekte sowie Probleme bei der Umsetzung der Projekte gemäß einer Best-Practice-Analyse betrachtet. Die Session sollte nach Möglichkeit am deutschsprachigen „Practitioner Day“ stattfinden, um den Austausch unter Praktikern zu ermöglichen.
12 Physiological plant ecology ▶
Full title: Physiological plant ecology in a complex and changing world

Chairs: Arthur Gessler, Ansgar Kahmen, Charlotte Grossiord

Contact: arthur.gessler@wsl.ch

Complex ecological patterns as well as the complex molecular regulation of plant functioning can be described by ever more sophisticated computational and analytical methods. However, these disciplinary advancements have tended to make ecology and plant physiology diverge rather than converge in scope and focus (large-scale and generality vs. small-scale and accuracy). While ecological studies are often confined to the description of patterns and processes, most physiological and mechanistic molecular studies are restricted to isolated processes in model organisms. Physiological plant ecology attempts to fill existing gaps between ecology and plant physiology, bridging differences in methods and scales, in order to arrive at a deeper functional understanding of the physiological mechanisms responsible for observed ecosystem patterns and processes. This session is planned as a broad forum linking physiological and ecological research centered around plants across scales. Contributions from all disciplines of plant ecology, from ecosystem ecology via plant ecophysiology to molecular physiology, are therefore encouraged. We especially welcome studies combining experiments with field observations, studies using isotope signals, multi-species studies, and studies on global-change effects on plant functioning.
13 Carbon allocation in plants and ecosystems ▶
Full title: Carbon allocation and storage in plants and ecosystems: new insights from experiments and field observations

Chairs: Henrik Hartmann, Günter Hoch, Michael Bahn

Contact: hhart@bgc-jena.mpg.de

Climate change potentially alters carbon (C) relations of plants and ecosystems. On the one hand, the ongoing increase of atmospheric CO2 changes plant and ecosystem stoichiometry with consequences for their functioning. On the other hand, increasing temperatures and drought might decrease net-C-uptake on the plant and ecosystem level, which, in extremis, can lead to declines in plant/ecosystem functioning and increasing mortality. Against this background, C allocation and reserve formation in plants and ecosystems have gained increasing attention over the last decade in plant ecology. However, although transport and allocation of photoassimilates to C sinks (e.g., respiration, structural growth, defense compounds, symbiotic interactions), the formation of C reserves and the re-allocation of stored C are essential processes in plants, our current understanding of the controlling mechanisms and the ecological significance of these processes, at the whole-plant level and beyond, is still surprisingly patchy. Moreover, the effect of environmental change, like drought or increasing temperatures, on the whole-plant C-balance and on C-allocation patterns, as well as the significance of C-reserves for stress resistance and resilience of plants are currently not well understood and a matter of ongoing debates. As a consequence of this lack of knowledge, we can neither properly predict the carbon balance of terrestrial ecosystems nor do we understand the factors that may drive plant mortality or survival under increasing environmental change. Within this session, we aim to bring together researchers working on different aspects of C allocation and storage in an ecophysiological context. In particular, we encourage contributions on quantitative analyses of phloem C-transport in plants, C-allocation at the whole-plant and ecosystem level and studies on the ecological significance of C-reserves for stress tolerance.
14 An interdisciplinary view on peatlands ▶
Full title: Bridging the gap between peatland ecology, hydrology, and biogeochemistry

Chairs: Klaus-Holger Knorr, Paul JH Mathijssen

Contact: kh.knorr@uni-muenster.de

Peatlands are the world’s most important terrestrial carbon store, having accumulated approximately 600 GtC since the Last Glacial Maximum. Although under pristine conditions acting as net greenhouse gas sink, peatlands emit the strong greenhouse gas methane. Currently, peatlands’ role as a sink of atmospheric carbon is threatened by climate change, land use and pollution. Therefore, it is vital that we understand how these ecosystems respond to these pressures, and what can be done to preserve peatlands’ carbon stocks and other ecosystem functions. Peatlands combine features of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, and as such contain unique hydrological and biogeochemical conditions, and harbor unique microbial and plant communities. The topics of peatland hydrology, below ground biogeochemistry, gas exchange with the atmosphere, microbial and vegetation ecology are highly interactive, but they are usually studied by scientists from different disciplines. Although it is widely recognized that we need to integrate the findings of all disciplines to come to a more comprehensive understanding of peatlands functioning, this is made difficult because the various aspects are studied using different techniques and at different spatial and temporal scales and resources of individual studies are often limited. This session therefore aims to stimulate the integration of different disciplines. We particularly invite submissions that attempt to build bridges between sub-disciplines of peatland science, addressing questions such as: “what are the results of peatland restoration on both greenhouse gas fluxes and biodiversity?”, “can we scale up biogeochemical processes using knowledge of vegetation composition and hydrology?”, or “are long term effects of hydrological changes on biogeochemistry mediated by vegetation change?”. Submissions from individual disciplines are encouraged as well to stimulate a broad discussion.
15 Parasite ecology & evolution ▶
Full title: Parasite ecology & evolution: from theory to applications

Chairs: David Thieltges, Bernd Sures, Jörn Scharsack, Mathias Wegner, Dan Benesh

Contact: David.Thieltges@nioz.nl

During the last decade an increasing number of studies have uncovered the pivotal ecological and evolutionary roles of parasites. Parasites have been shown to not only directly affect their hosts in manifold ways but also to have a multitude of indirect effects on communities and ecosystems, including effects on the topology and dynamics of food webs. Their effects on host fitness in turn create strong selective landscapes leading to evolutionary arms races with their hosts. It is also increasingly clear that parasite-host interactions do not happen in an ecological vacuum – they are affected by the ambient environment, leading to complex eco-evolutionary feedbacks and intricate relationships between abiotic and biotic factors and disease risk. While many of these studies have helped to shape our fundamental understanding of the ecological roles of parasites, they also have diverse repercussions for applied conservation issues such as disease management in threatened wildlife or the use of parasites as ecological indicators. This session aims to give a broad and diverse overview of the current frontiers of parasite ecology and evolutionary ecology. It will highlight the ecological effects of parasites on populations, communities and ecosystems and at the same time exemplify how ecological communities and anthropogenic stressors like climate change affect wildlife diseases. In addition, the session will exemplify how parasites serve as strong selective forces leading to complex eco-evolutionary feedbacks. Finally, it will illustrate some of the implications for conservation and management. Given the varied ecological impacts parasites can have, we believe a parasite-centred session will be of great interest to ecologists of all stripes and thus a welcome addition to the GfÖ conference.
16 Microplastic pollution ▶
Full title: Microplastic pollution - distribution and effects on organisms and ecosystems

Chairs: Friederike Gabel, Katrin Wendt-Potthoff, Bodo Philipp

Contact: gabelf@uni-muenster.de

Microplastic pollution is regarded as a major threat to ecosystems and there are news about it in the media nearly each week. While public media mostly focuses on marine ecosystems, microplastic is also found in terrestrial and limnic systems. This session aims to bring together researchers investigating the distribution and entry paths of plastic particles in aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems or developing methods for identifying plastic in the environment. Another focus of this session is to elucidate the effects of plastic polymers and their additives on organisms and ecosystems.
17 The Dutch way of restoration ▶
Full title: The Dutch way. 30 years of experience to develop, share and disseminate knowledge about practical restoration

Chairs: Leon Lamers , Eva Remke,

Contact: l.lamers@science.ru.nl

The Dutch OBN Knowledge Network (“OBN - Kennisnetwerk Ontwikkeling en Beheer Natuurkwaliteit”) for Nature Restoration and Management is an independent and innovative platform where policy makers, site managers and scientists cooperate in the management and restoration of natural areas. It develops and disseminates knowledge to enhance nature quality management and conservation in the Dutch landscapes and in the Atlantic Region. We want to share this way of working and major results of our practical restoration work. Each presentation should clearly present how the network contributes to the research question, research results as well as practical advices for the restoration of habitats and species populations. Furthermore, overall achievements and improvements for the Dutch nature and biodiversity should be stated. These key lessons learnt can also be used for the restoration in comparable landscapes and ecosystems. But also the kind of dialog and set-up of the network can be valuable for other countries.
18 Die ”neue” Agrarökologie ▶
Full title: Die ”neue” Agrarökologie: Ein Ansatz für eine nachhaltige Landwirtschaft?

Chairs: Tillmann Buttschardt

Contact: tillmann.buttschardt@uni-muenster.de

Unter Agrarökologie wurde bis zur Mitte der 1990er Jahre des letzten Jahrhunderts die Wissenschaft verstanden welche die Anwendung aus ökologischer Forschung entsprungener Konzepte auf das Design und Management von Agrarökosystemen zum Inhalt hatte. Anfang des neuen Jahrtausends wurde diese Definition erweitert durch Betrachtungen des gesamten Ernährungssystems (food system). Es entstand also eine wissenschaftliche Definition, die über die reine Naturwissenschaft hinaus reichte und interdisziplinär wurde. Auch wurden stärker Fragen der Wissensintegration, der Bildung, der kleinbäuerlichen Landwirtschaft und Ernährungssouveränität und Kreislaufwirtschaft hervor gehoben. Noch immer existieren nebeneinander verschiedene Ansätze: (1) Der Plot- bzw. Feldmaßstab der "klassischen" Ökologie, wie er in vielen großen Forschungsvorhaben untersucht wird (Biodiversitätsexploratorien, Jena Experiment). Bei diesen spielt die Bewirtschaftung meist nur als diffuse "Intensitätsgröße" eine Rolle, häufig indexiert (z.B. LUI) und für die landwirtschaftliche Praxis wenig operabel. (2) Daneben gibt es den Ansatz des Agrarökosystems bzw. den Maßstab der landwirtschaftlichen Betriebe. Dieser integriert betriebliche Abläufe und Bilanzen (Hoftorbilanz) ebenso, wie Raumkonfigurationen, naturnahe Restflächen oder produktionsintegrierte Naturschutzmaßnahmen (PIK). Schließlich (3) betrachtet eine "neue" Agrarökologie das gesamte Ernährungssystem mitsamt der wirtschaftlichen Rahmenbedingungen, Mensch-Natur-Verhältnisse und der laufenden Diskurse. Kurz zusammengefasst wird in der internationalen Forschung die Agrarökologie heute in dreierlei Dimensionen interpretiert: als Wissenschaft, als Praxis und als Bewegung.
Die Session möchte dies Thematik vor dem Hintergrund derzeit stattfindenden intensiven gesellschaftlichen Auseinandersetzung um Themen wie Insektenschwund, Pestizide, Tierwohl, Eutrophierung, Agrarförderung, Naturschutz vs. Landwirtschaft diskutieren. Leitfragen sind: Welchen Beitrag leistet die klassische Agrarökologie als Wissenschaft? Wie läuft die interdisziplinäre Zusammenarbeit zwischen natur- und gesellschaftswissenschaftlichen sowie ökonomischen Fächern in der Wissenschaft? Welche Fragen hat die Praxis an die Wissenschaft? Wie wird die Praxis, wie werden die Bewegungen innerhalb der Wissenschaft wahrgenommen? Liefert die "neue" Interpretation als Wissenschaft, Praxis, Bewegung Lösungen, die zu biodiversen und nachhaltigen Landschaften führen.
19 Enticing farmers for ecological intensification ▶
Full title: Ecological intensification: biodiversity-enhancing measures that work for farmers

Chairs: Thijs Fijen, David Kleijn, Matthias Albrecht

Contact: thijs.fijen@wur.nl

Ecological intensification of agriculture proposes that actively managing for more ecosystem services can, in part, replace external inputs allowing farmers to maintain high crop yields while reducing adverse effects on the environment. Measures to enhance ecosystem services delivery usually require to take productive land out of production to establish, for example, wildflower strips or hedgerows. There is a growing scientific evidence base showing that these measures have the potential to increase the ecosystem service delivery to crops. However, it is not always clear whether the potential benefits of higher crop yields or revenue outweigh the establishment and opportunity costs of the measures. Recently, studies have started to take the service delivery effects on agricultural production into account, which is required to convince farmers of the benefits of ecological intensification. This session brings together state-of-the-art results of research highlighting the importance of translating service delivery to the concrete benefits for crop yield or revenue at spatial and temporal scales that are relevant to farmers.
20 Agroecology ▶
Full title: Agroecology - from local to landscape management

Chairs: Christoph Scherber, Teja Tscharntke

Contact: Christoph.Scherber@uni-muenster.de

Agroecosystems are under increasing pressure worldwide to produce food and feed but simultaneously support both on-farm and surrounding biodiversity at multiple spatial scales. Current management incentives either focus on creating or enhancing local habitats, buffering negative management effects to natural landscape elements, or enhancing of on-farm biodiversity in space and time (crop rotations, intercropping). The science of agroecology has never been faced with so many challenges from so many different interest groups, including nature conservationists, farmer associations and the general public. In this session, we will bring together key scientists from basic and applied fields of agroecology to discuss recent developments and approaches from science to practice. Talks will cover ecological networks in agroecosystems, multifunctionality, multi-scale approaches to biodiversity monitoring and recent developments in agrobiodiversity management and conservation.
21 Forest Ecology - methods and management strategies ▶
Full title: Forest Ecology - from scientific methods to practice-relevant management strategies

Chairs: Dr. Franka Huth, Prof. Dr. Michael Bredemeier

Contact: mario@forst.tu-dresden.de

The scientific methods and technologies employed across the various fields of forest ecology research are myriad. Forest research is driven both by acute environmental threats and by persistent problems in forest ecosystems. In many cases the development of new scientific methods and technical innovations helps solve these problems, while simultaneously creating new opportunities and generating new questions. However, finding answers to scientific questions pertaining to forest ecology does not automatically lead to greater adaptation of forest management practices. The session seeks to address a broad range of ecological issues arising in areas of practice-relevant forest research. Of particular interest are presentations demonstrating the practical relevance of particular methods and their direct links to target-oriented forest management strategies. Recommendations for action and conflicting facets of different ecosystem services connected with forests can be derived from forest research issues related to biodiversity, species extinction and climate change. Key strategic considerations about whether to adopt integrative or segregative approaches to forest ecosystem protection, restoration and utilisation will be discussed critically. This will include the scientific analyses and the practical use of spatial and temporal components within forest ecosystems.
22 Global change experiments ▶
Full title: Global change experiments: from plants to ecosystems

Chairs: Matthias Arend, Nadine Ruehr, Jürgen Kreyling

Contact: matthias.arend@unibas.ch

Global change is a serious threat to terrestrial ecosystems, adversely affecting their ecological functions and socio-economical services. Rising levels of atmospheric CO2, anthropogenic nitrogen deposition, increasing temperatures and altered precipitation patterns interact on different temporal and spatial scales on plant physiology and biogeochemical cycles, which are tightly linked to ecological processes including competition, symbiotic networks and plant diversity. Effects of global change can be observed across all biomes and types of vegetation but less intensely managed ecosystems with limited potential for human-assisted adaptation, such as grasslands and forests, are particularly concerned. Global change experiments provide the information that is needed to gain process understanding and predict the direction and magnitude of future ecosystem changes. Manipulation of plants in research gardens, greenhouses or climate chambers is a frequently used approach to study effects of global change factors, separately or in combination, on plant-dependent processes and interpolate this understanding to future ecosystem responses. Manipulation of whole ecosystems in mesocosms, ecotrons or field plots is technically challenging but includes the effects of global change factors on biotic interactions and biogeochemical cycles, thus reflecting all fundamental processes of ecosystem functioning. Finally, field experiments provide high external validity but fewest control of environmental parameters. This session will cover both scientific and methodological aspects of global change experiments with plants, associated organisms and whole ecosystems. It will particular address the following topics: (1) responses of plants to global change factors including extreme events, (2) feedbacks of altered plant function on biogeochemical cycles and biotic interactions, and (3) effects on inter- and intraspecific competition and biodiversity.
23 Plant populations across space and time ▶
Full title: Plant populations across space and time

Chairs: Solveig Franziska Bucher, Johannes F. (Niek) Scheepens, Christian Lampei, Johannes Metz

Contact: solveig.franziska.bucher@uni-jena.de

Environmental factors, such as temperature, precipitation and land use, impose strong selective pressures on plant populations. Many environmental factors generally vary along spatial gradients, and/or due to temporal variation and environmental change. Species may change in abundance, exhibit trait plasticity and evolve phenological, physiological and morphological characters in response to such spatial and temporal variability. While these responses are often species-specific, they may alter properties of local plant communities and ecosystems and vice versa. Many such patterns and processes are only now being investigated. For example, will phenotypic plasticity hamper or promote local adaptation of plant populations in a changing world? Can we identify patterns and mechanisms behind species-specific responses? Can dispersal of adapted genotypes rescue populations from extinction? Does community composition affect evolution of the constituent species? A profound knowledge about ecological and evolutionary patterns and processes is strongly needed to forecast the fate of plant populations. This session offers a stage for scientists working on basic and applied questions in plant population ecology, evolutionary ecology and related disciplines, and we particularly encourage contributions addressing evolutionary ecological challenges posed by environmental change.
24 Molecular biodiversity & interaction assessment ▶
Full title: Assessment of biodiversity and species interactions with molecular tools

Chairs: Julia Tiede, Alexander Keller, Bernhard Eitzinger

Contact: tiedej@uni-muenster.de

Metabarcoding and other recent DNA-based approaches are increasingly used in ecological research, paleobiology, biomonitoring and conservation. The applications range from the molecular detection of rare species in environmental samples, over complete biodiversity assessments from bulk samples (e.g., trap-catches) to identification of interspecific interactions. These tools however also come with challenges and limitations to be carefully considered to ensure reliable results. This includes, amongst other things, sample collection, laboratory approaches, bioinformatics, databases and data interpretation. In this session, we will discuss results, opportunities, challenges and solutions in this rapidly developing field and thus invite technical contributions that critically review and enhance current methodologies. We further also explicitly invite presentations about applied projects that made use of these methods to answer ecological questions and such setting them into context with other types of data.
25 Multitrophic interactions ▶
Full title: Multitrophic interactions

Chairs: David Ott, Malte Jochum

Contact: ottd@uni-muenster.de

Unraveling the nature and underlying drivers of interactions between individuals, populations, functional and trophic groups lies at the heart of understanding the complexity of ecosystems and the processes therein.

In this session, we will cover direct and indirect, non-trophic and trophic interactions between organisms at different trophic levels and across different spatial and temporal scales from microbe-plant interactions in alpine moraines to succession in dung-associated communities, bird communities on Papua New Guinea and epiphyte litter decomposition in subtropical forests.

Comprising a mixture of talks and posters, this session will provide a broad overview over traditional concepts and recent highlights of multitrophic community ecology in the Anthropocene.

The contributions will highlight how anthropogenic induced stressors, such as heat waves, exotic species invasion, insect pests and ship-induced waves can alter species interactions in terrestrial and aquatic systems and across above and below-ground compartments.
26 Remote Sensing ▶
Full title: Remote Sensing for ecological research and application

Chairs: Hannes Feilhauer, Daniel Doktor

Contact: hannes.feilhauer@fu-berlin.de

Earth observation data are increasingly used in spatial ecology and nature conservation. Depending on the sensor system, remote sensing data provide useful insights in the spatio-temporal distribution and composition of leaf and canopy functional traits, species, communities, structural properties of vegetation stands, habitat characteristics, phenological trends, ecosystem services or land-use intensity. To take full advantage of this rich information content, advanced analysis techniques such as machine learning algorithms, time series analysis, multi-sensor data fusion, multi-scale analyses and the combination of remote sensing data with process-based models are helpful. This session will give an overview on recent ecological applications of various remote sensing approaches and aims to foster the discussion of these topics among interested users. We kindly invite all contributions that rely on remote sensing for spatio-temporal analyses in ecological science and practice.
27 Movement ecology ▶
Full title: Organismal movement in ecology and conservation

Chairs: Ulrike Schlägel, Johannes Signer

Contact: ulrike.schlaegel@uni-potsdam.de

Movement of organisms is an omnipresent process and is relevant for many fields in ecology and nature conservation. For example, movement processes can have critical roles in disease dynamics, ecosystem functioning (e.g. seed dispersal, pollination, or trophic interactions), community and metacommunity dynamics, as well as the spread of alien species. In addition, movement capacities but also movement requirements determine whether populations, and ultimately species, can persist in human-modified landscapes and adjust to shifting climatic conditions. New technological devices enable researchers to record the movement of animals, plants, and propagules, often in great detail at unprecedented spatial and temporal resolution. In addition, animal movement data can be aligned with various auxiliary information on the state of an individual (e.g. via accelerometers) and the external conditions it experiences (e.g. via external sensors on the animal or remote sensing). We can use such data to study questions like: When, where and why do organisms move? How do actively moving animals react to permanent and dynamic features of the landscape; and how does the landscape affect passively moving organisms? How do animals coordinate their movements among each other? Which impact do these movements have for other transported organisms? These and many more questions can now be addressed. Correspondingly there is a steady development of new statistical and computational tools to manage, visualize, and analyze these data. The aim of this session is to look at movement ecology from many different fields of ecology. We invite contributions from movement ecologists about how their findings can help to understand and solve problems in ecology and nature conservation, including the challenges that organisms face in human-altered landscapes and under changing environmental conditions. We also welcome researchers from other fields in ecology to talk about perspectives how movement ecology can contribute to a better understanding in their field.
28 Dynamic ecosystems ▶
Full title: Dynamic ecosystems in a changing world

Chairs: Dr. Sabine Fink, Dr. Kristin Ludewig

Contact: sabine.fink@wsl.ch

Dynamic ecosystems, such as floodplains, coastal areas, storm water ponds and fire-prone habitats are frequently endangered. Past and contemporary alterations aiming at reducing the frequency of extreme events (e.g. floods, fires) resulted in ecosystem changes or habitat losses. Climate change may further accelerate this decrease as some extreme events, i.e. heavy rain or prolonged drought periods may not benefit the vulnerable dynamic ecosystems. While many global and national guidelines designate dynamic ecosystems as conservation priorities, it is difficult to meet the ecological challenges linked to dynamics. Our knowledge on rare and adapted species as well as complex communities or interactions on ecosystem level are still limited. Additionally, reference systems for natural processes in dynamic zones without effects of human alterations are restricted. Many strategies for conservation are not applicable to dynamic ecosystems due to periodic and stochastic frequency of dynamic events. According to the knowledge gaps outlined above, this session aims at (i) better understanding the functioning of dynamic ecosystems, (ii) developing conservation strategies for dynamic ecosystems, and (iii) contributing to strategies applying the results of scientific studies in practical conservation work in a changing world. The contributions are not limited to the above-mentioned ecosystems and might include results of more or less successful conservation projects in dynamic ecosystems.
29 Citizen Science in Ecology ▶
Full title: Citizen Science in Ecology: Data quality concerns, methods and solutions

Chairs: Daniel Dörler, Florian Heigl

Contact: daniel.doerler@boku.ac.at

The reliability and quality of data is an important aspect of every scientific project. Based on data collected in a project, scientists make models, analyses and interpretations, that can have an impact on both policy decisions and scientific progress. Therefore, thorough quality and management systems need to be in place from the beginning of any project to avoid false assumptions based on flawed data. There are numerous methods available to ensure data quality for all kinds of research questions in any given project, that have been tested and approved of by researchers worldwide.
In citizen science projects, where volunteers are involved in at least one step of the scientific process, such quality control mechanisms are extremely important, especially when we think about mass participation projects, where thousands of participants collect data. In our session we invite oral presentations and posters which answer among others the following questions revolving around data quality in citizen science projects: How can we ensure that these data have been collected in a proper scientific way? What best practices for data quality management are available in ecological citizen science projects? What are the prerequisites and constraints for data quality in citizen science projects?
30 Atmospheric interfaces of terrestrial biota ▶
Full title: Atmospheric interfaces of terrestrial biota – ecological functions, modifications, fluxes

Chairs: Jürgen Burkhardt, Anita Roth-Nebelsick

Contact: j.burkhardt@uni-bonn.de

Terrestrial organisms have interfaces with the atmosphere that participate in - or even control - the fluxes of gases, fluids, particulate matter, and energy with the atmosphere. The interface microstructures seem particularly important and their high diversity might indicate their adaptive value to the abiotic and biotic environment. Within the last few decades, progress has been made in describing and understanding interface microstructures, and their physical and chemical properties, and in some cases to make technical use of them. It has also been recognized that environmental modifications like air pollution or climate change may affect the functionality of these interfaces. But a more general systematics is still missing. The session aims to bring together basic and applied approaches to - Describe interface microstructures and modifications (e.g., by leaf wetting or air pollution), - Understand effects of microstructures and modifications on environmental fluxes (e.g., benefits of wet leaves) - Make use of interface microstructures (e.g. optimization of green walls for air pollution cleaning; biomimetic approaches to reduce chemical treatments or to save energy) The session aims to improve the understanding of possible selective advantages and ecological relevance of microstructures, their modifications and their effects across the kingdoms (e.g., dragonfly wings showing the “Lotus effect”). Ideally, the session will identify ways to include microstructures (and environmental impacts like “wax degradation”) into large databases of e.g., leaf traits.
31 Traits, networks, and ecosystem functioning ▶
Full title: Traits, networks, and ecosystem functioning: Traits, networks, and ecosystem functioning: linking theory and practice

Chairs: Marco Moretti, Catherine Graham, Matthias Dehling

Contact: marco.moretti@wsl.ch

Functional traits and interaction networks are commonly used to study the relationship between the diversity and composition of species communities and ecosystem processes and services. They are also increasingly used to model the impact of global changes on species and communities and, consequently, ecological processes. In this session we address current challenges and future directions in trait and network ecology with the aim to advance our understanding of (i) the mechanism underlying biotic interactions, (ii) the relationship between diversity and ecosystem functioning, and (iii) the consequences of global changes on species communities and ecological processes. We welcome talks on topics at the forefront and intersection of trait-based community ecology, network ecology, and biodiversity-ecosystem function research, including the use of traits to predict biotic interactions and ecosystem functions; the role of intraspecific variation in species interactions; the role of species interactions for species distributions; how to measure ecosystem functioning; the effect of altered species composition on ecological processes.
32 European plant-pollinator communities ▶
Full title: Plant - pollinator communities: a European perspective

Chairs: Demetra Rakosy, Amibeth Thompson

Contact: demetra.rakosy@idiv.de

During the last century there have been dramatic changes in land-use practices and intensity across Europe (Kuemmerle et al., 2016). The mosaic of semi-natural and traditionally managed landscapes which maintain most of Europe’s biodiversity has been thus lost throughout vast parts of the continent (Plieninger et al., 2014). This has led not only to a decline of individual species, but also affected entire communities. It is feared that the disassembly of animal and plant communities might have proceeded so far as to be close to a tipping point beyond which they cannot recover (Dakos and Bascompte, 2014; Lever et al., 2014). Plant-pollinator communities appear thereby to be amongst the most affected (Burkle et al., 2013; Burkle and Alarcón, 2011; Potts et al., 2010). Synthetizing our knowledge about how plant-pollinator communities are structured and how their structure may affect their resilience to anthropogenic environmental change is thus an imperative. The aim of this session is therefore to provide a platform for incorporating studies across Europe in order to address the following general issues: 1) What are the factors shaping the assembly of plant-pollinator communities? 2) What is the current state of plant-pollinator communities occurring in natural and semi-natural habitats across Europe? 3) How is the structure of plant-pollinator communities responding to anthropogenic environmental change and are there regional differences across Europe? 4) How can the methodology used for studying plant-pollinator communities be standardized to facilitate the synthesis of multiple datasets? 5) Can the structure of plant-pollinator communities be restored to ensure their resilience? We hope that this session will provide an opportunity to integrate past and ongoing empirical research into an effective strategy for plant-pollinator community conservation and restoration and to contribute towards a productive discussion of the future of plant-pollinator communities in Europe. References: Burkle, L.A., Alarcón, R., 2011. The future of plant–pollinator diversity: Understanding interaction networks across time, space, and global change. American Journal of Botany 98, 528–538. https://doi.org/10.3732/ajb.1000391 Burkle, L.A., Marlin, J.C., Knight, T.M., 2013. Plant-Pollinator Interactions over 120 Years: Loss of Species, Co-Occurrence, and Function. Science 339, 1611–1615. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.1232728 Dakos, V., Bascompte, J., 2014. Critical slowing down as early warning for the onset of collapse in mutualistic communities. PNAS 111, 17546–17551. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1406326111 Kuemmerle, T., Levers, C., Erb, K., Estel, S., Jepsen, M.R., Müller, D., Plutzar, C., Stürck, J., Verkerk, P.J., Verburg, P.H., Reenberg, A., 2016. Hotspots of land use change in Europe. Environmental Research Letters 11, 064020. https://doi.org/10.1088/1748-9326/11/6/064020 Lever, J.J., Nes, E.H. van, Scheffer, M., Bascompte, J., 2014. The sudden collapse of pollinator communities. Ecology Letters 17, 350–359. https://doi.org/10.1111/ele.12236 Plieninger, T., Hui, C., Gaertner, M., Huntsinger, L., 2014. The Impact of Land Abandonment on Species Richness and Abundance in the Mediterranean Basin: A Meta-Analysis. PLOS ONE 9, e98355. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0098355 Potts, S.G., Biesmeijer, J.C., Kremen, C., Neumann, P., Schweiger, O., Kunin, W.E., 2010. Global pollinator declines: trends, impacts and drivers. Trends in Ecology & Evolution 25, 345–353. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tree.2010.01.007
33 Predictors of microbiomes ▶
Full title: Causes and consequences of microbiome changes

Chairs: Stefan Geisen, Madhav Thakur

Contact: s.geisen@nioo.knaw.nl

Microorganisms are the most abundant and diverse organisms on earth and drive major ecosystem functions. However, compared with macroscopic plants and animals, we know little about the vast diversity of microbial life that includes bacteria, archaea, fungi, protists as well as viruses. We are still in the phase of describing spatio-temporal patterns of microbial diversity aiming at identifying the main determinants of diverse microbiomes, while the functional importance of microbial taxa remains known only of specific taxa. In this session we aim at providing a cumulative overview on the current knowledge on microbiomes in different systems and how those are structured. We emphasise that abiotic parameters, such as pH or moisture, are key determinants of microbiomes. Therefore, the importance of global climate change in shaping microbiomes becomes evident. However, we also include biotic components, such as hosts as well as predators of microorganisms, as key elements that structure microbiomes. Furthermore, abiotic and biotic drivers of microbiome structures lead to plastic but also evolutionary imprinted changes that needs to be considered. The goal of this session is to first provide an overview of microbiome components in different systems, such as soils, marine, freshwater as well as diverse plant and animal hosts. We want to shed light on major abiotic and biotic parameters that shape those communities over space and time. We then aim at linking these community compositions to their functional importance ranging from food-web interactions to ecosystem processes. Overall, we hope to cover a broad spectrum of microbial diversity across Earth’s systems and target a wide audience in virtually all fields of ecology.
34 Biodiversity monitoring schemes ▶
Full title: Biodiversity monitoring schemes - challenges and feasibilities

Chairs: Jens Dauber, Petra Dieker, Eva Knop

Contact: jens.dauber@thuenen.de

"The loss of biodiversity is worldwide progressing at an alarming rate. There is a growing awareness of the serious consequences of biodiversity loss not only for nature conservation but also for human well-being and economy, e.g. through the loss of ecosystem services. Recent data on the massive loss of insect biomass resulted in a strong debate about the causes and consequences of this decline not only in science but also in the media and the public. What became obvious in this debate was that there is generally a lack of sound data to quantify the decline of biodiversity and its underlying causes and consequences. This has opened widely a political window for the financing, promotion and development of monitoring initiatives from local to European level. These circumstances offer consequently the opportunity to establish sound biodiversity monitoring schemes and networks for evidence-based assessments of biodiversity trends and causes and consequences of it. Ideally these schemes would include different spatial scales and socio-economic settings. Current discussions, however, reveal that there is no common understanding developed about the aspects of biodiversity that a monitoring should encompass and how a monitoring should be designed to ensure both scientific standards and feasibility. The symposium aims at presenting and discussing the recent developments and approaches in theory and practice for designing and establishing biodiversity monitoring schemes and methodological innovations (e.g. digital data acquisition, remote sensing and new analytical approaches, meta-barcoding, capacity building). The symposium will end with a panel discussion. "
35 Means vs. extremes ▶
Full title: Means vs. extremes - what shapes our ecosystems?

Chairs: Tobias Mette, Wolfgang Falk

Contact: tobias.mette@lwf.bayern.de

In 2018, Germany experienced the longest-lasting drought ever recorded. But did it trigger long-term changes in our ecosystems? Or how extreme must an event become to substantially disturb ecosystem functions? Motivated by the methodological challenges of extreme event ecology, this session brings together studies that address eco-physiological responses to extreme events. The focus lies primarily on climatic extreme events like droughts, late frost, extreme precipitation, flooding, storms and fires. The response scale ranges from individual traits to population structure to ecosystem functions. The type of study includes experimental, observational and modelling approaches. Examples of possible research questions are: • How does the investigated extreme event affect the organism/ population/ ecosystem? • What is the dose-response relationship between the “extreme”ness of an event and the reaction of the organism/ population/ ecosystem? • At what intensity/ frequency does an extreme event lead to long-term or even irreversible changes in the organism/ population/ ecosystem? • Do organisms/ populations/ ecosystems possess an ecological memory that allows for a higher resilience to future extreme events? • How does climate change alter extreme event frequency/ intensity and what is the impact on organism/ population/ ecosystem level? • What options exist to mitigate adverse consequences? After a decade of research on the ecological impact of extreme events mani-fold evidence has given insight into how far extreme events shape our ecosystems. The session aims to assemble current research work on different spatio-temporal scales. It encourages the scientific exchange on problems and solutions of investigating rare events in ecology, and identifies knowledge gaps for future research.
36 Grasslands ▶
Full title: Grasslands: causes and consequences of biodiversity decline

Chairs: Nico Blüthgen, Nadja Simons

Contact: bluethgen@bio.tu-darmstadt.de

Naturally assembled grasslands, including meadows, pastures, dry swards and wetlands, are particularly vulnerable ecosystems and contain numerous threatened plant and animal species. Increased fertilization and eutrophication, intensive mowing with effective machinery, changes in grazing regimes, climate change and intensification in the surrounding landscape are known to negatively affect the biodiversity in grasslands. Declines in biodiversity occur across all trophic levels, from plants as primary producers, to insects as herbivores or pollinators, to mammals or birds as secondary consumers. Often, declines in one trophic level lead to declines in higher trophic levels even though if those are not directly impacted by the original drivers of biodiversity decline. In this session, we hope to learn about (1) the extent of current changes in biodiversity; (2) drivers of declines in abundance and species diversity or changes in community composition; (3) the consequences of such losses for biodiversity or ecosystem processes within and outside the grassland systems. Contributions from all types of grassland systems are welcome.
37 Wildlife Detection Dogs in science and practice ▶
Full title: The use of wildlife detection dogs in nature conservation and wildlife research

Chairs: Anne Berger, Juliane Röder

Contact: berger@izw-berlin.de

With their outstanding sense of smell, their will to please and their learning ability, dogs are highly valued to cooperate with their humans in various fields. Wildlife detection dogs are trained to qualitatively and quantitatively complement established data collection methods in conservation and wildlife research and to even help to develop new monitoring methods in this field. In this session, we want to inform about the use of dogs for species detection in scientific research, in environmental planning agencies and official species monitoring. In order to use wildlife detection dogs scientifically and systematically, as well as to achieve societal recognition, national and international standards and certification options for the proof of their performance are being developed and implemented. We will discuss chances and challenges of using wildlife detection dogs in nature conservation and wildlife research projects, we will introduce projects using wildlife detection dogs and, thus, we want to disseminate this ‘method’ to a broader audience. It is possible to extend this session to other monitoring methods (camera traps, transect walks, remote sensing by drones) for broader comparatively discussion.
38 Scale, stability, and coexistence ▶
Full title: Leveraging scale to build empirically tractable theory and metrics of stability and coexistence

Chairs: Adam Thomas Clark, Yuval Zelnik

Contact: adam.tclark@gmail.com

Ecosystem stability and species coexistence are immensely important to basic ecological research, management, and conservation. Ecosystem stability typically describes the variance of temporal fluctuations of total biomass of species in the community, and has become a central tool for studying the relationship between biodiversity and ecosystem functioning. The closely related topic of coexistence refers to the ability of particular combinations of species to persist in the long-term, and is arguably the most important indicator of human impacts on diversity. Decades of theoretical and empirical work has demonstrated that estimations of both stability and coexistence can vary greatly depending on the spatial and temporal scale of measurement. For example, a species that shows stable behaviour at small scales may be wiped out due to dynamics occurring at larger scales.
Surprisingly few studies have addressed the interface between scale and these metrics, and it remains unclear what general patterns underlie observed patterns. In particular, a major challenge that limits practical applications of stability research is that most theoretical results and methods are not tractable in empirical systems. However, a number of recent results suggest that by combining information from across many different scales, it may be possible to broadly characterize dynamical behaviour of species and ecosystems, giving a robust result that will not be as sensitive to measurement issues.
This session has three primary aims: (i) demonstrate the influence that measurement scale has on perceptions of stability and coexistence; (ii) present the results of recent studies that address these challenges; and (iii) lay the groundwork for future studies and collaborations. We propose that the session be held in three stages. After a brief (5 min) introduction of speakers by session organizer A.T.C., the first stage would include 3-5 “standard” talks (15 min. each), given by senior leaders in the field to outline the major challenges. The second stage, composed of ~15 “lightening”-style talks (10 min. each – 7.5 min. talk + 2.5 min. questions), will summarize solutions to these challenges based on recent research. Finally, during a mini-workshop (1.5 hours) at the end of the session, speakers and audience members will plan future projects to help advance the field. The program organisers will subsequently write up a short summary report of the session, which will be used to plan a longer-form workshop in the near future (potentially immediately after the GFÖ meeting, funded through an UFZ “synthesis” grant).
39 Tree-associated microbes ▶
Full title: Dead or alive - trees and their associated microbial communities

Chairs: Kezia Goldmann, Julia Moll

Contact: kezia.goldmann@ufz.de

As long-living organisms, trees play an important role in forest, agricultural and also urban ecosystems. They contribute to nutrient cycling, act as carbon storage and provide diverse niches for many organisms. Amongst those are microorganisms, a group with high importance and value for ecosystem functioning. Microorganisms are engaged in close relationship with trees, and such associations should be considered as inseparable entities according to the hologenome theory. Functionally, the relationships between the trees and their microbiome encompass commensal or detrimental interactions. Tree microbiomes are highly complex communities made of pro- and eukaryotic microbes that inhabit tree surrounding soils, rhizosphere, roots, tree trunks, leaves, or litter. Biotic and abiotic factors differ tremendously between these habitats, so that the diversity, composition and functioning of their microflora as well as their assembly rules are highly specific and divergent over time. During their life, trees have to adapt to varying seasons and changing environmental conditions. Likewise, trees affect the microclimate, soil type, nutrient availability and turnover throughout all development stages, from seedlings, adult to senescent plants, and even after death. Deadwood, as emerging microbial habitat, often leads to changes in microbial functioning as dynamic shifts within and between mycorrhizal, pathogenic or saprotrophic microbes occur. The goal of this session is to unite researchers studying microbes associate to trees. It offers a platform to synthesize and integrate current advances in studies on the diversity, community composition, and functional roles of bacteria, fungi, protists, algae and/or viruses in, on, under or around trees.
40 Tree interactions affect ecosystem functioning ▶
Full title: What are the mechanisms of biodiversity effects on ecosystem functioning in forests?

Chairs: Stefan Trogisch, Xiaojuan Liu, Gemma Rutten, Helge Bruelheide

Contact: stefan.trogisch@botanik.uni-halle.de

The functions and services derived from diverse forests have become the focus of research in the last decade. While observational studies have already demonstrated that tree species richness has positive effects on multiple ecosystem functions and services, studies on the underlying mechanisms are lagging much behind. To study the causal basis for positive tree richness effects, Biodiversity-Ecosystem Functioning (BEF) forest experiments have been established worldwide since more than 20 years. Positive effects of biodiversity are usually observed at the scale of the community, such as an increase in stand-level production, but they probably are caused by mechanisms at a much finer scale, i.e. that of individual trees. The session will be devoted to novel findings in forest diversity experiments that show to which degree positive net biodiversity effects are brought about by complementarity or selection effects, and whether these effects are mediated by herbivory or pathogens. Progress has been also made to explain how functional traits of trees determine the trees’ resource use strategy. A particular focus will be on mechanisms, such as the role of above- and belowground niche differentiation among tree species in reducing interspecific competition and a more complete resource use. Thus, this session aims at expanding our understanding on how tree-tree interactions in local neighbourhoods translate into the observed tree species richness effects on key ecosystem functions at the community scale.