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Brussels, Belgium

Lepoint G.,University of Liege | Heughebaert A.,Belgian Biodiversity Platform | Michel L.N.,University of Liege
ZooKeys | Year: 2016

Background The seagrass Posidonia oceanica L. Delile, commonly known as Neptune grass, is an endemic species of the Mediterranean Sea. It hosts a distinctive and diverse epiphytic community, dominated by various macroalgal and animal organisms. Mediterranean bryozoans have been extensively studied but quantitative data assessing temporal and spatial variability have rarely been documented. In Lepoint et al. (2014a, b) occurrence and abundance data of epiphytic bryozoan communities on leaves of P. oceanica inhabiting Revellata Bay (Corsica, Mediterranean Sea) were reported and trophic ecology of Electra posidoniae Gautier assessed. New information Here, metadata information is provided on the data set discussed in Lepoint et al. (2014a) and published on the GBIF portal as a sampling-event data set: http://ipt.biodiversity.be/resource?r=ulg_bryozoa&v=1.0). The data set is enriched by data concerning species settled on Posidonia scales (dead petiole of Posidonia leaves, remaining after limb abscission). © Gilles Lepoint et al. Source

Essl F.,University of Vienna | Essl F.,Environment Agency Austrias | Essl F.,Stellenbosch University | Bacher S.,University of Fribourg | And 42 more authors.
BioScience | Year: 2015

Substantial progress has been made in understanding how pathways underlie and mediate biological invasions. However, key features of their role in invasions remain poorly understood, available knowledge is widely scattered, and major frontiers in research and management are insufficiently characterized. We review the state of the art, highlight recent advances, identify pitfalls and constraints, and discuss major challenges in four broad fields of pathway research and management: pathway classification, application of pathway information, management response, and management impact. We present approaches to describe and quantify pathway attributes (e.g., spatiotemporal changes, proxies of introduction effort, environmental and socioeconomic contexts) and how they interact with species traits and regional characteristics. We also provide recommendations for a research agenda with particular focus on emerging (or neglected) research questions and present new analytical tools in the context of pathway research and management. © 2015 The Author(s). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the American Institute of Biological Sciences. All rights reserved. Source

Halford M.,University of Liege | Heemers L.,Proefcentrum voor Sierteelt | van Wesemael D.,Proefcentrum voor Sierteelt | Mathys C.,Center Technique Horticole | And 5 more authors.
EPPO Bulletin | Year: 2014

Voluntary approaches have been recently used in the horticultural sector to deal with the introduction and spread of invasive alien plants. In Belgium, the first Code of conduct has been developed within the frame of the AlterIAS project, a LIFE+ "Information & Communication" project aiming at raising the awareness of horticulture professionals and gardeners on the invasive plants issue. The Belgian Code was prepared in consultation with representatives from the ornamental sector, public authorities and the scientific community. The Code was promoted throughout the country with a specific communication campaign entitled "Plant different". Thanks to communication efforts, a positive dynamic of involvement was observed over time. Surveys were performed to assess the changes of attitudes and the perception of the Code by the target audience of the project. Positive results were achieved for horticulture professionals. However, the Code will require more time to be widely adopted by the ornamental sector in Belgium. © 2014 OEPP/EPPO. Source

Verheyen K.,Ghent University | Ceunen K.,Ghent University | Ampoorter E.,Ghent University | Baeten L.,Ghent University | And 10 more authors.
Plant Ecology and Evolution | Year: 2013

Context - During the last two decades, functional biodiversity research has provided strong support for the hypothesis that more biodiverse ecosystems have the potential to deliver more and better services. However, most empirical support for this hypothesis comes from simple structured communities that are relatively easy to manipulate. The impact of forest biodiversity on forest ecosystem functioning has been far less studied. Experiment design - In this paper, we present the recently established, large-scale FORBIO experiment (FORest BIOdiversity and Ecosystem Functioning), specifically designed to test the effects of tree species diversity on forest ecosystem functioning. FORBIO's design matches with that of the few other tree diversity experiments worldwide, but at the same time, the FORBIO experiment is unique as it consists of a similar experimental set-up at three sites in Belgium (Zedelgem, Hechtel-Eksel and Gedinne) with contrasting edaphic and climatological characteristics. This design will help to provide answers to one of the most interesting unresolved questions in functional biodiversity research, notably whether the effects of complementarity on ecosystem functioning decrease in less stressful and more productive environments. At each site, FORBIO consists of 41 to 44 plots (127 plots in total) planted with monocultures and mixtures up to four species, selected from a pool of five site-adapted, functionally different tree species. When allocating the treatments to the plots, we maximally avoided any possible covariation between environmental factors. Monitoring of ecosystem functioning already started at the Zedelgem and Gedinne sites and will start soon in Hechtel-Eksel. Multiple processes are being measured and as the trees grow older, we plan to add even more processes. Expected results - Not only basic science, but also forest management will benefit from the results coming from the FORBIO experiment, as FORBIO is, for instance, also a test case for uncommon, not well-known tree species mixtures. To conclude, FORBIO is an important ecosystem experiment that has the potential to deliver badly needed insights into the multiple relationships between biodiversity and ecosystem functioning, which will be valuable for both science and practice. © 2013 National Botanic Garden of Belgium and Royal Botanical Society of Belgium. Source

Dedeurwaerdere T.,Catholic University of Louvain | Admiraal J.,Leiden University | Beringer A.,University of Greifsald | Bonaiuto F.,University of Rome La Sapienza | And 12 more authors.
Environmental Science and Policy | Year: 2016

This paper analyses the possibility of building a mutually supportive dynamics between internally and externally motivated behaviour for biodiversity conservation and ecosystem services provision. To this purpose a face to face survey amongst 169 key actors of 34 highly successful and prominent biodiversity arrangements in seven EU countries was conducted. The main finding of the paper is the feasibility of combining inherently intrinsically motivated behaviours (providing enjoyment, pleasure from experimentation and learning, aesthetic satisfaction) and internalized extrinsic motivations (related to the identification with the collective goals of conservation policy) through a common set of governance features. Successful initiatives that combine internal and external motivations share the following features: inclusive decision making processes, a broad monitoring by "peers" beyond the core staff of the initiatives, and a context that is supportive for the building of autonomous actor competences. These findings are in line with the psycho-sociological theory of motivation, which shows the importance of a psycho-social context leading to a subjective perception of autonomy and a sense of competence of the actors. © 2016. Source

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