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John Poulsen

Associate Professor of Tropical Ecology
Environmental Sciences and Policy
PO Box 90328, LSCR A317, Durham, NC 27708

Selected Publications


Harnessing ecological theory to enhance ecosystem restoration.

Journal Article Current biology : CB · May 2024 Ecosystem restoration can increase the health and resilience of nature and humanity. As a result, the international community is championing habitat restoration as a primary solution to address the dual climate and biodiversity crises. Yet most ecosystem r ... Full text Cite

Disturbance sensitivity shapes patterns of tree species distribution in Afrotropical lowland rainforests more than climate or soil.

Journal Article Ecology and evolution · May 2024 Understanding how tropical forests respond to abiotic environmental changes is critical for preserving biodiversity, mitigating climate change, and maintaining ecosystem services in the coming century. To evaluate the relative roles of the abiotic environm ... Full text Cite

Linking crop availability, forest elephant visitation and perceptions of human-elephant interactions in villages bordering Ivindo National Park, Gabon

Journal Article ORYX · March 7, 2024 Feeding by Critically Endangered forest elephants Loxodonta cyclotis in rural plantations is a conservation issue in Gabon, but studies characterizing drivers of spatiotemporal patterns of human-elephant interactions remain sparse, hindering mitigation. In ... Full text Cite

Global patterns and environmental drivers of forest functional composition

Journal Article Global Ecology and Biogeography · February 1, 2024 Aim: To determine the relationships between the functional trait composition of forest communities and environmental gradients across scales and biomes and the role of species relative abundances in these relationships. Location: Global. Time period: Recen ... Full text Cite

Integrated global assessment of the natural forest carbon potential.

Journal Article Nature · December 2023 Forests are a substantial terrestrial carbon sink, but anthropogenic changes in land use and climate have considerably reduced the scale of this system1. Remote-sensing estimates to quantify carbon losses from global forests2-5 are ch ... Full text Cite

The global biogeography of tree leaf form and habit.

Journal Article Nature plants · November 2023 Understanding what controls global leaf type variation in trees is crucial for comprehending their role in terrestrial ecosystems, including carbon, water and nutrient dynamics. Yet our understanding of the factors influencing forest leaf types remains inc ... Full text Cite

Fluid hunter motivation in Central Africa: Effects on behaviour, bushmeat and income

Journal Article People and Nature · October 1, 2023 Individual motivation for the rural use of common-pool resources (CPRs) can be fluid, with the line between subsistence and commercial often unclear and in flux. Implications of fluid motivation are understudied yet important for social–ecological systems ... Full text Cite

Situating defaunation in an operational framework to advance biodiversity conservation.

Journal Article Bioscience · October 2023 Anthropogenic pressures are causing the widespread loss of wildlife species and populations, with adverse consequences for ecosystem functioning. This phenomenon has been widely but inconsistently referred to as defaunation. A cohesive, quantitative ... Full text Cite

Fruit availability and human disturbance influence forest elephant group size

Journal Article Animal Behaviour · September 1, 2023 Social living provides benefits to group members, but these benefits come at a cost. In fission–fusion societies, individuals or small groups leave and join different groups as ecological constraints on group size fluctuate. Little research has been conduc ... Full text Cite

Masting is uncommon in trees that depend on mutualist dispersers in the context of global climate and fertility gradients.

Journal Article Nature plants · July 2023 The benefits of masting (volatile, quasi-synchronous seed production at lagged intervals) include satiation of seed predators, but these benefits come with a cost to mutualist pollen and seed dispersers. If the evolution of masting represents a balance bet ... Full text Cite

Evenness mediates the global relationship between forest productivity and richness

Journal Article Journal of Ecology · June 1, 2023 1. Biodiversity is an important component of natural ecosystems, with higher species richness often correlating with an increase in ecosystem productivity. Yet, this relationship varies substantially across environments, typically becoming less pronounced ... Full text Cite

Wild mockingbirds distinguish among familiar humans.

Journal Article Scientific reports · June 2023 Although individuals of some species appear able to distinguish among individuals of a second species, an alternative explanation is that individuals of the first species may simply be distinguishing between familiar and unfamiliar individuals of the secon ... Full text Cite

Linking seed size and number to trait syndromes in trees

Journal Article Global Ecology and Biogeography · May 1, 2023 Aim: Our understanding of the mechanisms that maintain forest diversity under changing climate can benefit from knowledge about traits that are closely linked to fitness. We tested whether the link between traits and seed number and seed size is consistent ... Full text Cite

Co-limitation towards lower latitudes shapes global forest diversity gradients.

Journal Article Nature ecology & evolution · October 2022 The latitudinal diversity gradient (LDG) is one of the most recognized global patterns of species richness exhibited across a wide range of taxa. Numerous hypotheses have been proposed in the past two centuries to explain LDG, but rigorous tests of the dri ... Full text Open Access Cite

Coupling paraecology and hunter GPS self-follows to quantify village bushmeat hunting dynamics across the landscape scale

Journal Article African Journal of Ecology · June 1, 2022 Hunting for bushmeat represents a complex social–ecological system ill-suited to top-down management. Community participatory management is an alternative approach with increasing support for both ethical and pragmatic reasons. Key to a community approach ... Full text Cite

Globally, tree fecundity exceeds productivity gradients.

Journal Article Ecology letters · June 2022 Lack of tree fecundity data across climatic gradients precludes the analysis of how seed supply contributes to global variation in forest regeneration and biotic interactions responsible for biodiversity. A global synthesis of raw seedproduction data shows ... Full text Cite

Limits to reproduction and seed size-number trade-offs that shape forest dominance and future recovery.

Journal Article Nature communications · May 2022 The relationships that control seed production in trees are fundamental to understanding the evolution of forest species and their capacity to recover from increasing losses to drought, fire, and harvest. A synthesis of fecundity data from 714 species worl ... Full text Cite

Aboveground biomass density models for NASA's Global Ecosystem Dynamics Investigation (GEDI) lidar mission

Journal Article Remote Sensing of Environment · March 1, 2022 NASA's Global Ecosystem Dynamics Investigation (GEDI) is collecting spaceborne full waveform lidar data with a primary science goal of producing accurate estimates of forest aboveground biomass density (AGBD). This paper presents the development of the mod ... Full text Open Access Cite

Correction for Cazzolla Gatti et al., The number of tree species on Earth.

Journal Article Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America · March 2022 Full text Cite

The number of tree species on Earth.

Journal Article Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America · February 2022 One of the most fundamental questions in ecology is how many species inhabit the Earth. However, due to massive logistical and financial challenges and taxonomic difficulties connected to the species concept definition, the global numbers of species, inclu ... Full text Cite

Harnessing ecological theory to enhance ecosystem restoration.

Journal Article Current biology : CB · May 2024 Ecosystem restoration can increase the health and resilience of nature and humanity. As a result, the international community is championing habitat restoration as a primary solution to address the dual climate and biodiversity crises. Yet most ecosystem r ... Full text Cite

Disturbance sensitivity shapes patterns of tree species distribution in Afrotropical lowland rainforests more than climate or soil.

Journal Article Ecology and evolution · May 2024 Understanding how tropical forests respond to abiotic environmental changes is critical for preserving biodiversity, mitigating climate change, and maintaining ecosystem services in the coming century. To evaluate the relative roles of the abiotic environm ... Full text Cite

Linking crop availability, forest elephant visitation and perceptions of human-elephant interactions in villages bordering Ivindo National Park, Gabon

Journal Article ORYX · March 7, 2024 Feeding by Critically Endangered forest elephants Loxodonta cyclotis in rural plantations is a conservation issue in Gabon, but studies characterizing drivers of spatiotemporal patterns of human-elephant interactions remain sparse, hindering mitigation. In ... Full text Cite

Global patterns and environmental drivers of forest functional composition

Journal Article Global Ecology and Biogeography · February 1, 2024 Aim: To determine the relationships between the functional trait composition of forest communities and environmental gradients across scales and biomes and the role of species relative abundances in these relationships. Location: Global. Time period: Recen ... Full text Cite

Integrated global assessment of the natural forest carbon potential.

Journal Article Nature · December 2023 Forests are a substantial terrestrial carbon sink, but anthropogenic changes in land use and climate have considerably reduced the scale of this system1. Remote-sensing estimates to quantify carbon losses from global forests2-5 are ch ... Full text Cite

The global biogeography of tree leaf form and habit.

Journal Article Nature plants · November 2023 Understanding what controls global leaf type variation in trees is crucial for comprehending their role in terrestrial ecosystems, including carbon, water and nutrient dynamics. Yet our understanding of the factors influencing forest leaf types remains inc ... Full text Cite

Fluid hunter motivation in Central Africa: Effects on behaviour, bushmeat and income

Journal Article People and Nature · October 1, 2023 Individual motivation for the rural use of common-pool resources (CPRs) can be fluid, with the line between subsistence and commercial often unclear and in flux. Implications of fluid motivation are understudied yet important for social–ecological systems ... Full text Cite

Situating defaunation in an operational framework to advance biodiversity conservation.

Journal Article Bioscience · October 2023 Anthropogenic pressures are causing the widespread loss of wildlife species and populations, with adverse consequences for ecosystem functioning. This phenomenon has been widely but inconsistently referred to as defaunation. A cohesive, quantitative ... Full text Cite

Fruit availability and human disturbance influence forest elephant group size

Journal Article Animal Behaviour · September 1, 2023 Social living provides benefits to group members, but these benefits come at a cost. In fission–fusion societies, individuals or small groups leave and join different groups as ecological constraints on group size fluctuate. Little research has been conduc ... Full text Cite

Masting is uncommon in trees that depend on mutualist dispersers in the context of global climate and fertility gradients.

Journal Article Nature plants · July 2023 The benefits of masting (volatile, quasi-synchronous seed production at lagged intervals) include satiation of seed predators, but these benefits come with a cost to mutualist pollen and seed dispersers. If the evolution of masting represents a balance bet ... Full text Cite

Evenness mediates the global relationship between forest productivity and richness

Journal Article Journal of Ecology · June 1, 2023 1. Biodiversity is an important component of natural ecosystems, with higher species richness often correlating with an increase in ecosystem productivity. Yet, this relationship varies substantially across environments, typically becoming less pronounced ... Full text Cite

Wild mockingbirds distinguish among familiar humans.

Journal Article Scientific reports · June 2023 Although individuals of some species appear able to distinguish among individuals of a second species, an alternative explanation is that individuals of the first species may simply be distinguishing between familiar and unfamiliar individuals of the secon ... Full text Cite

Linking seed size and number to trait syndromes in trees

Journal Article Global Ecology and Biogeography · May 1, 2023 Aim: Our understanding of the mechanisms that maintain forest diversity under changing climate can benefit from knowledge about traits that are closely linked to fitness. We tested whether the link between traits and seed number and seed size is consistent ... Full text Cite

Co-limitation towards lower latitudes shapes global forest diversity gradients.

Journal Article Nature ecology & evolution · October 2022 The latitudinal diversity gradient (LDG) is one of the most recognized global patterns of species richness exhibited across a wide range of taxa. Numerous hypotheses have been proposed in the past two centuries to explain LDG, but rigorous tests of the dri ... Full text Open Access Cite

Coupling paraecology and hunter GPS self-follows to quantify village bushmeat hunting dynamics across the landscape scale

Journal Article African Journal of Ecology · June 1, 2022 Hunting for bushmeat represents a complex social–ecological system ill-suited to top-down management. Community participatory management is an alternative approach with increasing support for both ethical and pragmatic reasons. Key to a community approach ... Full text Cite

Globally, tree fecundity exceeds productivity gradients.

Journal Article Ecology letters · June 2022 Lack of tree fecundity data across climatic gradients precludes the analysis of how seed supply contributes to global variation in forest regeneration and biotic interactions responsible for biodiversity. A global synthesis of raw seedproduction data shows ... Full text Cite

Limits to reproduction and seed size-number trade-offs that shape forest dominance and future recovery.

Journal Article Nature communications · May 2022 The relationships that control seed production in trees are fundamental to understanding the evolution of forest species and their capacity to recover from increasing losses to drought, fire, and harvest. A synthesis of fecundity data from 714 species worl ... Full text Cite

Aboveground biomass density models for NASA's Global Ecosystem Dynamics Investigation (GEDI) lidar mission

Journal Article Remote Sensing of Environment · March 1, 2022 NASA's Global Ecosystem Dynamics Investigation (GEDI) is collecting spaceborne full waveform lidar data with a primary science goal of producing accurate estimates of forest aboveground biomass density (AGBD). This paper presents the development of the mod ... Full text Open Access Cite

Correction for Cazzolla Gatti et al., The number of tree species on Earth.

Journal Article Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America · March 2022 Full text Cite

The number of tree species on Earth.

Journal Article Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America · February 2022 One of the most fundamental questions in ecology is how many species inhabit the Earth. However, due to massive logistical and financial challenges and taxonomic difficulties connected to the species concept definition, the global numbers of species, inclu ... Full text Cite

Distinct Community-Wide Responses to Forecasted Climate Change in Afrotropical Forests

Journal Article Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution · January 18, 2022 More refined knowledge of how tropical forests respond to changes in the abiotic environment is necessary to mitigate climate change, maintain biodiversity, and preserve ecosystem services. To evaluate the unique response of diverse Afrotropical forest com ... Full text Open Access Cite

Long Distance Seed Dispersal by Forest Elephants

Journal Article Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution · December 22, 2021 By dispersing seeds long distances, large, fruit-eating animals influence plant population spread and community dynamics. After fruit consumption, animal gut passage time and movement determine seed dispersal patterns and distances. These, in turn, are inf ... Full text Open Access Cite

Improving population estimates of difficult-to-observe species: A dung decay model for forest elephants with remotely sensed imagery

Journal Article Animal Conservation · December 1, 2021 Accurate and ecologically relevant wildlife population estimates are critical for species management. One of the most common survey methods for forest mammals – line transects for animal sign with distance sampling – has assumptions regarding conversion fa ... Full text Open Access Cite

Using Model Analysis to Unveil Hidden Patterns in Tropical Forest Structures

Journal Article Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution · November 30, 2021 When ordinating plots of tropical rain forests using stand-level structural attributes such as biomass, basal area and the number of trees in different size classes, two patterns often emerge: a gradient from poorly to highly stocked plots and high positiv ... Full text Open Access Cite

From town to national park: Understanding the long-term effects of hunting and logging on tree communities in Central Africa

Journal Article Forest Ecology and Management · November 1, 2021 Anthropogenic disturbances are changing the structure and composition of tropical forests worldwide. Multiple disturbances often occur simultaneously in forests. Hunting and logging, for example, are within-forest disturbances that impact vast areas of see ... Full text Open Access Cite

The NASA AfriSAR campaign: Airborne SAR and lidar measurements of tropical forest structure and biomass in support of current and future space missions

Journal Article Remote Sensing of Environment · October 1, 2021 In 2015 and 2016, the AfriSAR campaign was carried out as a collaborative effort among international space and National Park agencies (ESA, NASA, ONERA, DLR, ANPN and AGEOS) in support of the upcoming ESA BIOMASS, NASA-ISRO Synthetic Aperture Radar (NISAR) ... Full text Open Access Cite

Taking the pulse of Earth's tropical forests using networks of highly distributed plots

Journal Article Biological Conservation · August 1, 2021 Tropical forests are the most diverse and productive ecosystems on Earth. While better understanding of these forests is critical for our collective future, until quite recently efforts to measure and monitor them have been largely disconnected. Networking ... Full text Open Access Cite

Is there tree senescence? The fecundity evidence.

Journal Article Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America · August 2021 Despite its importance for forest regeneration, food webs, and human economies, changes in tree fecundity with tree size and age remain largely unknown. The allometric increase with tree diameter assumed in ecological models would substantially overestimat ... Full text Cite

African forest elephant movements depend on time scale and individual behavior.

Journal Article Scientific reports · June 2021 The critically endangered African forest elephant (Loxodonta cyclotis) plays a vital role in maintaining the structure and composition of Afrotropical forests, but basic information is lacking regarding the drivers of elephant movement and behavior at land ... Full text Open Access Cite

Resistance of African tropical forests to an extreme climate anomaly.

Journal Article Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America · May 2021 The responses of tropical forests to environmental change are critical uncertainties in predicting the future impacts of climate change. The positive phase of the 2015-2016 El Niño Southern Oscillation resulted in unprecedented heat and low precipitation i ... Full text Open Access Cite

Expected carbon emissions from a rubber plantation in Central Africa

Journal Article Forest Ecology and Management. · January 2021 The development of agriculture on degraded lands is increasingly seen as a strategy to boost food availability and economic productivity while minimizing environmental degradation and loss of forests. To understand the effects of agricultural production on ... Full text Open Access Cite

LED flashlight technology facilitates wild meat extraction across the tropics

Journal Article Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment · November 1, 2020 Hunting for wild meat in the tropics provides subsistence and income for millions of people. Methods have remained relatively unchanged since the introduction of shotguns and battery-powered incandescent flashlights, but the short battery life of such flas ... Full text Open Access Cite

Old growth Afrotropical forests critical for maintaining forest carbon

Journal Article Global Ecology and Biogeography · October 1, 2020 Aim: Large trees [≥ 70 cm diameter at breast height (DBH)] contribute disproportionately to aboveground carbon stock (AGC) across the tropics but may be vulnerable to changing climate and human activities. Here we determine the distribution, drivers and th ... Full text Open Access Cite

Evaluating the potential of full-waveform lidar for mapping pan-tropical tree species richness

Journal Article Global Ecology and Biogeography · October 1, 2020 Aim: Mapping tree species richness across the tropics is of great interest for effective conservation and biodiversity management. In this study, we evaluated the potential of full-waveform lidar data for mapping tree species richness across the tropics by ... Full text Cite

The global abundance of tree palms

Journal Article Global Ecology and Biogeography · September 1, 2020 Aim: Palms are an iconic, diverse and often abundant component of tropical ecosystems that provide many ecosystem services. Being monocots, tree palms are evolutionarily, morphologically and physiologically distinct from other trees, and these differences ... Full text Open Access Cite

Assessing the effects of elephant foraging on the structure and diversity of an Afrotropical forest

Journal Article Biotropica. · May 2020 African forest elephants (Loxodonta cyclotis) are ecosystem engineers that browse and damage large quantities of vegetation during their foraging and movement. Though elephant trail networks and clearings are conspicuous features of many African forests, t ... Full text Open Access Cite

Long-term thermal sensitivity of Earth's tropical forests.

Journal Article Science (New York, N.Y.) · May 2020 The sensitivity of tropical forest carbon to climate is a key uncertainty in predicting global climate change. Although short-term drying and warming are known to affect forests, it is unknown if such effects translate into long-term responses. Here, we an ... Full text Open Access Cite

Climatic and Resource Determinants of Forest Elephant Movements

Journal Article Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution · April 17, 2020 As a keystone megafaunal species, African forest elephants (Loxodonta cyclotis) influence the structure and composition of tropical forests. Determining the links between food resources, environmental conditions and elephant movement behavior is crucial to ... Full text Open Access Cite

Advancing an interdisciplinary framework to study seed dispersal ecology.

Journal Article AoB PLANTS · April 2020 Although dispersal is generally viewed as a crucial determinant for the fitness of any organism, our understanding of its role in the persistence and spread of plant populations remains incomplete. Generalizing and predicting dispersal processes are challe ... Full text Cite

Asynchronous carbon sink saturation in African and Amazonian tropical forests.

Journal Article Nature · March 2020 Structurally intact tropical forests sequestered about half of the global terrestrial carbon uptake over the 1990s and early 2000s, removing about 15 per cent of anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions1-3. Climate-driven vegetation models typical ... Full text Cite

Defaunation of large mammals alters understory vegetation and functional importance of invertebrates in an Afrotropical forest

Journal Article Biological Conservation. · January 2020 Hunting has reduced or eliminated large-bodied vertebrates in many areas across the tropics, contributing to the global process of defaunation. Elucidating the ecological consequences of hunting has important implications for managing ecosystems and for ou ... Full text Open Access Cite

Landscape-level validation of allometric relationships for carbon stock estimation reveals bias driven by soil type.

Journal Article Ecological applications : a publication of the Ecological Society of America · December 2019 Mitigation of climate change depends on accurate estimation and mapping of terrestrial carbon stocks, particularly in carbon dense tropical forests. Allometric equations can be used to robustly estimate biomass of tropical trees, but often require tree hei ... Full text Cite

Stronger together: comparing and integrating camera trap, visual, and dung survey data in tropical forest communities

Journal Article Ecosphere · December 1, 2019 Accurate estimations of animal populations are necessary for management, conservation, and policy decisions. However, methods for surveying animal communities disproportionately represent specific groups or guilds. For example, transect surveys can provide ... Full text Cite

Intrinsic and extrinsic drivers of intraspecific variation in seed dispersal are diverse and pervasive.

Journal Article AoB PLANTS · December 2019 There is growing realization that intraspecific variation in seed dispersal can have important ecological and evolutionary consequences. However, we do not have a good understanding of the drivers or causes of intraspecific variation in dispersal, how stro ... Full text Open Access Cite

Pangolins in global camera trap data: Implications for ecological monitoring

Journal Article Global Ecology and Conservation · October 1, 2019 Despite being heavily exploited, pangolins (Pholidota: Manidae) have been subject to limited research, resulting in a lack of reliable population estimates and standardised survey methods for the eight extant species. Camera trapping represents a unique op ... Full text Cite

The Forest Observation System, building a global reference dataset for remote sensing of forest biomass.

Journal Article Scientific data · October 2019 Forest biomass is an essential indicator for monitoring the Earth's ecosystems and climate. It is a critical input to greenhouse gas accounting, estimation of carbon losses and forest degradation, assessment of renewable energy potential, and for developin ... Full text Cite

Exploring the relation between remotely sensed vertical canopy structure and tree species diversity in Gabon

Journal Article Environmental Research Letters · September 9, 2019 Mapping tree species diversity is increasingly important in the face of environmental change and biodiversity conservation. We explore a potential way of mapping this diversity by relating forest structure to tree species diversity in Gabon. First, we test ... Full text Cite

Author Correction: Climatic controls of decomposition drive the global biogeography of forest-tree symbioses.

Journal Article Nature · July 2019 In this Letter, a middle initial and additional affiliation have been added for author G. J. Nabuurs; two statements have been added to the Supplementary Acknowledgements; and a citation to the French National Institute has been added to the Methods; see a ... Full text Cite

Estimates and determinants of stocks of deep soil carbon in Gabon, Central Africa

Journal Article Geoderma · May 1, 2019 Despite the importance of tropical forest carbon to the global carbon cycle, research on carbon stocks is incomplete in major areas of the tropical world. Nowhere in the tropics is this more the case than in Africa, and especially Central Africa, where car ... Full text Open Access Cite

Participatory monitoring reveals village-centered gradients of mammalian defaunation in central Africa

Journal Article Biological Conservation. · May 2019 Tropical areas are facing a bushmeat crisis involving the systematic over-exploitation of large-bodied mammals for both subsistence and commercial purposes. We hypothesize that because hunting generally originates from villages, it will create “halos of de ... Full text Cite

Climatic controls of decomposition drive the global biogeography of forest-tree symbioses.

Journal Article Nature · May 2019 The identity of the dominant root-associated microbial symbionts in a forest determines the ability of trees to access limiting nutrients from atmospheric or soil pools1,2, sequester carbon3,4 and withstand the effects of climate chan ... Full text Cite

Employing plant functional groups to advance seed dispersal ecology and conservation.

Journal Article AoB PLANTS · April 2019 Seed dispersal enables plants to reach hospitable germination sites and escape natural enemies. Understanding when and how much seed dispersal matters to plant fitness is critical for understanding plant population and community dynamics. At the same time, ... Full text Cite

The persistence of carbon in the African forest understory.

Journal Article Nature plants · February 2019 Quantifying carbon dynamics in forests is critical for understanding their role in long-term climate regulation1-4. Yet little is known about tree longevity in tropical forests3,5-8, a factor that is vital for estimating carbon persis ... Full text Cite

Low-intensity logging and hunting have long-term effects on seed dispersal but not fecundity in Afrotropical forests.

Journal Article AoB PLANTS · February 2019 Hunting and logging, ubiquitous human disturbances in tropical forests, have the potential to alter the ecological processes that govern population recruitment and community composition. Hunting-induced declines in populations of seed-dispersing animals ar ... Full text Open Access Cite

Do topography and fruit presence influence occurrence and intensity of crop-raiding by forest elephants (Loxodonta africana cyclotis)?

Journal Article PloS one · January 2019 Crop damage by forest elephants (Loxodonta africana cyclotis) and the resulting human-elephant conflict are issues of great concern for both the conservation of the species and the protection of rural livelihoods in Central Africa. Addressing these problem ... Full text Cite

Unsustainable vs. Sustainable hunting for food in gabon: Modeling short-and long-term gains and losses

Journal Article Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution · January 1, 2019 Today, rural people continue to consume wild animals (aquatic and terrestrial) because they are often cheaper and more available than farmed livestock and fish. In many places where the meat from wild animals is an important source of food and income for p ... Full text Cite

Estimation of gut passage time of wild, free roaming forest elephants

Journal Article Wildlife Biology · January 1, 2019 Seed gut passage times, the time from ingestion to defecation, and frugivore movement patterns determine patterns of seed deposition across the landscape and are thus crucial parameters to quantify in wild populations. Recent advancements in satellite and ... Full text Cite

Seed traits, not density or distance from parent, determine seed predation and establishment in an Afrotropical forest

Journal Article Biotropica. · November 2018 Seed predators drive patterns in seed mortality and seedling establishment and are posited to contribute to the maintenance of plant species diversity through several mechanisms. Negative density dependence and spatially restricted recruitment are apparent ... Full text Cite

Pan-tropical prediction of forest structure from the largest trees

Journal Article Global Ecology and Biogeography · November 1, 2018 Aim: Large tropical trees form the interface between ground and airborne observations, offering a unique opportunity to capture forest properties remotely and to investigate their variations on broad scales. However, despite rapid development of metrics to ... Full text Cite

In Situ Reference Datasets from the TropiSAR and AfriSAR Campaigns in Support of Upcoming Spaceborne Biomass Missions

Journal Article IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Applied Earth Observations and Remote Sensing · October 1, 2018 Tropical forests are a key component of the global carbon cycle. Yet, there are still high uncertainties in forest carbon stock and flux estimates, notably because of their spatial and temporal variability across the tropics. Several upcoming spaceborne mi ... Full text Cite

Ecological consequences of forest elephant declines for Afrotropical forests.

Journal Article Conservation Biology. · June 2018 Poaching is rapidly extirpating African forest elephants (Loxodonta cyclotis) from most of their historical range, leaving vast areas of elephant-free tropical forest. Elephants are ecological engineers that create and maintain forest habitat; thus, their ... Full text Open Access Cite

Assessing Africa-Wide Pangolin Exploitation by Scaling Local Data

Journal Article Conservation Letters · March 1, 2018 Overexploitation is one of the main pressures driving wildlife closer to extinction, yet broad-scale data to evaluate species’ declines are limited. Using African pangolins (Family: Pholidota) as a case study, we demonstrate that collating local-scale data ... Full text Open Access Cite

Phylogenetic classification of the world's tropical forests.

Journal Article Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America · February 2018 Knowledge about the biogeographic affinities of the world's tropical forests helps to better understand regional differences in forest structure, diversity, composition, and dynamics. Such understanding will enable anticipation of region-specific responses ... Full text Cite

Forest elephant movement and habitat use in a tropical forest-grassland mosaic in Gabon.

Journal Article PloS one · January 2018 Poaching of forest elephants (Loxodonta cyclotis) for ivory has decimated their populations in Central Africa. Studying elephant movement can provide insight into habitat and resource use to reveal where, when, and why they move and guide conservation effo ... Full text Open Access Cite

A pantropical assessment of vertebrate physical damage to forest seedlings and the effects of defaunation

Journal Article Global Ecology and Conservation · July 1, 2017 Many of the forces that shape tropical forest plant communities are facilitated by interactions with animals, which can either promote or inhibit plant reproduction and survival across ontogenetic stages. Hunting-induced defaunation can disrupt these inter ... Full text Open Access Cite

Vertebrate community composition and diversity declines along a defaunation gradient radiating from rural villages in Gabon

Journal Article Journal of Applied Ecology. · June 2017 Anthropocene defaunation is the global phenomenon of human‐induced animal biodiversity loss. Understanding the patterns and process of defaunation is critical to predict outcomes for wildlife populations and cascading consequences for ecosystem function an ... Full text Open Access Cite

The riverine source of CH4 and N2O from the Republic of Congo, western Congo Basin

Journal Article Biogeosciences · May 5, 2017 We discuss concentrations of dissolved CH4, N2O, O2, NO-3 and NH+4 , and emission fluxes of CH4 and N2O for river sites in the western Congo Basin, Republic of Congo (ROC). Savannah, swamp forest and tropical forest samples were collected from the Congo ma ... Full text Cite

Reducing Carbon Emissions from Forest Conversion for Oil Palm Agriculture in Gabon

Journal Article Conservation Letters · May 1, 2017 Growing demand for palm oil is driving its expansion into the African tropics, potentially leading to significant carbon emissions if tropical forest is converted to palm monoculture. In this first study of a Central African oil palm concession (31,800 ha) ... Full text Open Access Cite

Deadwood stocks increase with selective logging and large tree frequency in Gabon.

Journal Article Global change biology · April 2017 Deadwood is a major component of aboveground biomass (AGB) in tropical forests and is important as habitat and for nutrient cycling and carbon storage. With deforestation and degradation taking place throughout the tropics, improved understanding of the ma ... Full text Open Access Cite

Forest structure determines the abundance and distribution of large lianas in Gabon

Journal Article Global Ecology and Biogeography · April 1, 2017 Aim: Lianas are an important component of forest structure in the tropics, accounting for up to 45% of total stems. Mounting evidence that tropical forests are undergoing structural changes, with a growing abundance of lianas reducing forest carbon storage ... Full text Open Access Cite

Telemetric tracking of scatterhoarding and seed fate in a Central African forest

Journal Article Biotropica. · March 2017 In seed predation studies, removal of a seed is only the first step of a dynamic process that may result in dispersal rather than seed death. This process, termed seed fate, has received little attention in African forests, particularly in Central Africa. ... Full text Open Access Cite

Poaching empties critical Central African wilderness of forest elephants.

Journal Article Current biology : CB · February 2017 Elephant populations are in peril everywhere, but forest elephants in Central Africa have sustained alarming losses in the last decade [1]. Large, remote protected areas are thought to best safeguard forest elephants by supporting large populations buffere ... Full text Open Access Cite

Diversity and carbon storage across the tropical forest biome.

Journal Article Scientific reports · January 2017 Tropical forests are global centres of biodiversity and carbon storage. Many tropical countries aspire to protect forest to fulfil biodiversity and climate mitigation policy targets, but the conservation strategies needed to achieve these two functions dep ... Full text Open Access Cite

An assessment of high carbon stock and high conservation value approaches to sustainable oil palm cultivation in Gabon

Journal Article Environmental Research Letters · January 1, 2017 Industrial-scale oil palm cultivation is rapidly expanding in Gabon, where it has the potential to drive economic growth, but also threatens forest, biodiversity and carbon resources. The Gabonese government is promoting an ambitious agricultural expansion ... Full text Open Access Cite

No “Dear John Letter” Here—These Guys Are Committed to Saving the African Jungles: The Arising Researcher

Journal Article The Bulletin of the Ecological Society of America · January 2017 Full text Cite

Hunting-induced defaunation drives increased seed predation and decreased seedling establishment of commercially important tree species in an Afrotropical forest

Journal Article Forest Ecology and Management. · December 2016 Human hunting is widespread in tropical forests and can substantially alter the plant-animal interactions that drive tree recruitment. Seed predation is a strong determinant of plant reproductive success, but it remains unclear how defaunation modifies thi ... Full text Open Access Cite

Wanted: new allometric equations for large lianas and African lianas

Journal Article Biotropica. · September 2016 Liana abundance appears to be increasing, possibly to the detriment of trees, but methods for measuring liana biomass are undependable. We show that five commonly used allometric equations produce disparate results and discuss two large information gaps—Ce ... Full text Open Access Cite

How Bees Deter Elephants: Beehive Trials with Forest Elephants (Loxodonta africana cyclotis) in Gabon.

Journal Article PloS one · January 2016 In Gabon, like elsewhere in Africa, crops are often sources of conflict between humans and wildlife. Wildlife damage to crops can drastically reduce income, amplifying poverty and creating a negative perception of wild animal conservation among rural peopl ... Full text Open Access Cite

Bacteriohopanepolyols in tropical soils and sediments from the Congo River catchment area

Journal Article Organic Geochemistry · December 1, 2015 The Congo River basin drains the second largest area of tropical rainforest in the world, including a large proportion of pristine wetlands. We present the bacteriohopanepolyol (BHP) inventory of a suite of tropical soils and, from comparison with publishe ... Full text Open Access Cite

Correction for Slik et al., An estimate of the number of tropical tree species.

Journal Article Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America · August 2015 Full text Cite

An estimate of the number of tropical tree species.

Journal Article Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America · June 2015 The high species richness of tropical forests has long been recognized, yet there remains substantial uncertainty regarding the actual number of tropical tree species. Using a pantropical tree inventory database from closed canopy forests, consisting of 65 ... Full text Open Access Cite

Synthesising bushmeat research effort in West and Central Africa: A new regional database

Journal Article Biological Conservation. · January 2015 Unsustainable hunting threatens both biodiversity and local livelihoods. Despite high levels of research effort focused on understanding the dynamics of bushmeat trade and consumption, current research is largely site specific. Without synthesis and quanti ... Full text Open Access Cite

Natural regeneration of selected timber species in the Republic of Congo

Journal Article African Journal of Ecology · December 1, 2014 Natural regeneration of timber species is critical to the sustainable management of tropical forests. To understand what determines regeneration success of timber species in the Congo Basin, we evaluated whether seedling recruitment rates differed between ... Full text Open Access Cite

Variability in aerobic methane oxidation over the past 1.2Myrs recorded in microbial biomarker signatures from Congo fan sediments

Journal Article Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta · May 15, 2014 Methane (CH4) is a strong greenhouse gas known to have perturbed global climate in the past, especially when released in large quantities over short time periods from continental or marine sources. It is therefore crucial to understand and, if possible, qu ... Full text Open Access Cite

The biogeochemistry of carbon across a gradient of streams and rivers within the Congo Basin

Journal Article Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences · January 1, 2014 Dissolved organic carbon (DOC) and inorganic carbon (DIC, pCO2), lignin biomarkers, and theoptical properties of dissolved organic matter (DOM) were measured in a gradient of streams and rivers within the Congo Basin, with the aim of examining how vegetati ... Full text Open Access Cite

Diet selection is related to breeding status in two frugivorous hornbill species of Central Africa

Journal Article Journal of Tropical Ecology · January 1, 2014 Avian diet selection is hypothesized to be sensitive to seasonal changes in breeding status, but few tests exist for frugivorous tropical birds. Frugivorous birds provide an interesting test case because fruits are relatively deficient in minerals critical ... Full text Open Access Cite

Large trees drive forest aboveground biomass variation in moist lowland forests across the tropics

Journal Article Global Ecology and Biogeography · December 1, 2013 Aim: Large trees (d.b.h.≥70cm) store large amounts of biomass. Several studies suggest that large trees may be vulnerable to changing climate, potentially leading to declining forest biomass storage. Here we determine the importance of large trees for trop ... Full text Cite

Ecological erosion of an Afrotropical forest and potential consequences for tree recruitment and forest biomass

Journal Article Biological Conservation. · July 2013 Unprecedented rates of logging and hunting threaten to transform the remaining primary tropical forest into a degraded mosaic, emptied of wildlife. Defaunation is expected to interrupt plant–animal interactions with cascading effects for forest structure, ... Full text Open Access Cite

Correlations between physical and chemical defences in plants: tradeoffs, syndromes, or just many different ways to skin a herbivorous cat?

Journal Article The New phytologist · April 2013 Most plant species have a range of traits that deter herbivores. However, understanding of how different defences are related to one another is surprisingly weak. Many authors argue that defence traits trade off against one another, while others argue that ... Full text Open Access Cite

Inorganic carbon speciation and fluxes in the Congo River

Journal Article Geophysical Research Letters · February 16, 2013 Seasonal variations in inorganic carbon chemistry and associated fluxes from the Congo River were investigated at Brazzaville-Kinshasa. Small seasonal variation in dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) was found in contrast with discharge-correlated changes in ... Full text Open Access Cite

Above-ground biomass and structure of 260 African tropical forests.

Journal Article Philosophical transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological sciences · 2013 We report above-ground biomass (AGB), basal area, stem density and wood mass density estimates from 260 sample plots (mean size: 1.2 ha) in intact closed-canopy tropical forests across 12 African countries. Mean AGB is 395.7 Mg dry mass ha-1 (95% CI: 14.3) ... Full text Cite

Roles of seed and establishment limitation in determining patterns of afrotropical tree recruitment.

Journal Article PloS one · January 2013 Quantifying the relative importance of the multiple processes that limit recruitment may hold the key to understanding tropical tree diversity. Here we couple theoretical models with a large-scale, multi-species seed-sowing experiment to assess the degree ... Full text Open Access Cite

Averting biodiversity collapse in tropical forest protected areas.

Journal Article Nature · September 2012 The rapid disruption of tropical forests probably imperils global biodiversity more than any other contemporary phenomenon. With deforestation advancing quickly, protected areas are increasingly becoming final refuges for threatened species and natural eco ... Full text Cite

Tropical Forest Conservation and Industry Partnership: An Experience from the Congo Basin

Journal Article Tropical Forest Conservation and Industry Partnership: An Experience from the Congo Basin · March 16, 2012 Historically, the conservation of forests and wildlife has focused on the creation of national parks and reserves. However, only 9% of protected areas are larger than 14,000 hectares, likely making them too small to conserve ecosystem services and prevent ... Full text Cite

Introduction

Journal Article Tropical Forest Conservation and Industry Partnership: An Experience from the Congo Basin · March 16, 2012 Full text Cite

Conclusions and Lessons Learned

Journal Article · March 16, 2012 Full text Cite

Building Partnerships for Conservation

Journal Article · March 16, 2012 Full text Cite

Vertebrate herbivory impacts seedling recruitment more than niche partitioning or density-dependent mortality.

Journal Article Ecology · March 2012 In tropical forests, resource-based niches and density-dependent mortality are mutually compatible mechanisms that can act simultaneously to limit seedling populations. Differences in the strengths of these mechanisms will determine their roles in maintain ... Full text Open Access Cite

Experimental manipulation of seed shadows of an Afrotropical tree determines drivers of recruitment.

Journal Article Ecology · March 2012 The loss of animals in tropical forests may alter seed dispersal patterns and reduce seedling recruitment of tree species, but direct experimental evidence is scarce. We manipulated dispersal patterns of Manilkara mabokeensis, a monkey-dispersed tree, to a ... Full text Open Access Cite

Tropical Forest Conservation and Industry Partnership: An Experience from the Congo Basin

Journal Article Tropical Forest Conservation and Industry Partnership: An Experience from the Congo Basin · 2012 Cite

Putting plant resistance traits on the map: a test of the idea that plants are better defended at lower latitudes.

Journal Article The New phytologist · August 2011 • It has long been believed that plant species from the tropics have higher levels of traits associated with resistance to herbivores than do species from higher latitudes. A meta-analysis recently showed that the published literature does not support this ... Full text Cite

Decoupling the effects of logging and hunting on an afrotropical animal community.

Journal Article Ecological applications : a publication of the Ecological Society of America · July 2011 In tropical forests, hunting nearly always accompanies logging. The entangled nature of these disturbances complicates our ability to resolve applied questions, such as whether secondary and degraded forest can sustain populations of tropical animals. With ... Full text Open Access Cite

Bushmeat supply and consumption in a tropical logging concession in northern Congo.

Journal Article Conservation Biology. · December 2009 Unsustainable hunting of wildlife for food empties tropical forests of many species critical to forest maintenance and livelihoods of forest people. Extractive industries, including logging, can accelerate exploitation of wildlife by opening forests to hun ... Full text Cite

Logging concessions can extend the conservation estate for Central African tropical forests.

Journal Article Conservation biology : the journal of the Society for Conservation Biology · October 2009 The management of tropical forest in timber concessions has been proposed as a solution to prevent further biodiversity loss. The effectiveness of this strategy will likely depend on species-specific, population-level responses to logging. We conducted a s ... Full text Cite

Urban mockingbirds quickly learn to identify individual humans.

Journal Article Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America · June 2009 Practically all animals are affected by humans, especially in urban areas. Although most species respond negatively to urbanization, some thrive in human-dominated settings. A central question in urban ecology is why some species adapt well to the presence ... Full text Cite

Generalized linear mixed models: a practical guide for ecology and evolution.

Journal Article Trends in ecology & evolution · March 2009 How should ecologists and evolutionary biologists analyze nonnormal data that involve random effects? Nonnormal data such as counts or proportions often defy classical statistical procedures. Generalized linear mixed models (GLMMs) provide a more flexible ... Full text Cite

Plants as reef fish: fitting the functional form of seedling recruitment.

Journal Article The American naturalist · August 2007 The life histories of many species depend first on dispersal to local sites and then on establishment. After dispersal, density-independent and density-dependent mortalities modify propagule supply, determining the number of individuals that establish. Bec ... Full text Open Access Cite

Are plant populations seed limited? A critique and meta-analysis of seed addition experiments.

Journal Article The American naturalist · July 2007 We examine the relative importance of processes that underlie plant population abundance and distribution. Two opposing views dominate the field. One posits that the ability to establish at a site is determined by the availability of suitable microsites (e ... Full text Cite

A 12-year phenological record of fruiting: Implications for frugivore populations and indicators of climate change

Journal Article · January 1, 2005 Answering the fundamental ecological question of what determines animal abundance has become critical with the accelerating need for informed management plans for endangered species. A major difficulty in testing general hypotheses to account for variation ... Full text Cite

A long-term evaluation of fruiting phenology: importance of climate change.

Journal Article Journal of tropical ecology · January 2005 Full text Cite

Comparative seed shadows of bird-, monkey-, and wind-dispersed trees

Journal Article Ecology · January 1, 2005 Although spatial patterns of seed distribution are thought to vary greatly among plant species dispersed by different vectors, few studies have directly examined this assumption. We compared patterns of seed rain of nine species of trees disseminated by la ... Full text Cite

Densities, distributions, and seasonal movements of gorillas and chimpanzees in swamp forest in northern Congo

Journal Article International Journal of Primatology · April 1, 2004 The conservation of gorillas (Gorilla spp.) and chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) depends upon knowledge of their densities and distribution throughout their ranges. However, information about ape populations in swamp forests is scarce. Here we build on curren ... Full text Cite

Fruiting trees as dispersal foci in a semi-deciduous tropical forest.

Journal Article Oecologia · March 2004 Quantification of seed rain patterns is an initial step toward explaining variation in plant recruitment, and consequently, organization of forest communities. Spatially contagious patterns of seed deposition, where seeds are patchily dispersed with some s ... Full text Cite

Differential resource use by primates and hornbills: implications for seed dispersal

Journal Article Ecology · January 2002 Arboreal frugivores, such as primates and hornbills, are important seed dispersers for many tropical plant species, yet the degree to which they use the same resources is unknown. If primates and hornbills consume the same fruit species, they may be redund ... Full text Cite

Seasonal variation in the feeding ecology of the grey-cheeked mangabey (Lophocebus albigena) in Cameroon.

Journal Article American journal of primatology · June 2001 Seasonal fluctuations in resource abundance often cause primates to change their feeding behavior and ecology. The objective of this study was to examine the response of a largely frugivorous monkey, the grey-cheeked mangabey (Lophocebus albigena), to seas ... Full text Cite

Seed dispersal by a diurnal primate community in the Dja Reserve, Cameroon

Journal Article Journal of Tropical Ecology · January 1, 2001 Multiple species of primate disperse seeds and differentially contribute to the seed rain in tropical forests. The goal of this study was to examine seed dispersal by a primate community of five monkey and two ape species in the Dja Reserve, Cameroon. The ... Full text Cite