A CREAF-led European study published in the journal Global Change Biology warns that the drought associated with climate change could reduce soil fauna diversity and slow the decomposition of leaf litter (fallen leaves, twigs, bark, etc.), potentially hindering the recycling of nutrients for plants throughout Europe.
A study by CREAF and the Smithsonian Institute for Tropical Research shows that when the populations of large and mid-sized vertebrate animal are reduced, a phenomenon known as “defaunation,” this has negative repercussions for the rest of the ecosystem. This is a clear sign about the vulnerability of ecosystems to global biodiversity loss.
Scientists identify the 13 most important research challenges to face global change in the Mediterranean region
Scientists consider it key to understand why droughts kill so many trees and the influence of local forest histories on tree mortality. They also warn that we know very little about the joined effects of different disturbances on each ecosystem, and highlight the necessity to plan research projects covering more time and space.