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A systemic overreaction to years versus decades of warming in a subarctic grassland ecosystem

Walker, Tom W.N. ; Janssens, Ivan A. ; Weedon, James T. ; Sigurdsson, Bjarni D. ; Richter, Andreas ; Peñuelas, Josep ; Leblans, Niki I.W. ; Bahn, Michael ; Bartrons, Mireia and De Jonge, Cindy , et al. (2020) In Nature Ecology and Evolution 4(1). p.101-108
Abstract

Temperature governs most biotic processes, yet we know little about how warming affects whole ecosystems. Here we examined the responses of 128 components of a subarctic grassland to either 5–8 or >50 years of soil warming. Warming of >50 years drove the ecosystem to a new steady state possessing a distinct biotic composition and reduced species richness, biomass and soil organic matter. However, the warmed state was preceded by an overreaction to warming, which was related to organism physiology and was evident after 5–8 years. Ignoring this overreaction yielded errors of >100% for 83 variables when predicting their responses to a realistic warming scenario of 1 °C over 50 years, although some, including soil carbon content,... (More)

Temperature governs most biotic processes, yet we know little about how warming affects whole ecosystems. Here we examined the responses of 128 components of a subarctic grassland to either 5–8 or >50 years of soil warming. Warming of >50 years drove the ecosystem to a new steady state possessing a distinct biotic composition and reduced species richness, biomass and soil organic matter. However, the warmed state was preceded by an overreaction to warming, which was related to organism physiology and was evident after 5–8 years. Ignoring this overreaction yielded errors of >100% for 83 variables when predicting their responses to a realistic warming scenario of 1 °C over 50 years, although some, including soil carbon content, remained stable after 5–8 years. This study challenges long-term ecosystem predictions made from short-term observations, and provides a framework for characterization of ecosystem responses to sustained climate change.

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organization
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Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
in
Nature Ecology and Evolution
volume
4
issue
1
pages
8 pages
publisher
Nature Publishing Group
external identifiers
  • pmid:31819236
  • scopus:85076507831
ISSN
2397-334X
DOI
10.1038/s41559-019-1055-3
language
English
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yes
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bf22b717-84aa-439b-a43b-ee6cbcbae815
date added to LUP
2021-01-11 15:54:02
date last changed
2021-02-17 04:53:53
@article{bf22b717-84aa-439b-a43b-ee6cbcbae815,
  abstract     = {<p>Temperature governs most biotic processes, yet we know little about how warming affects whole ecosystems. Here we examined the responses of 128 components of a subarctic grassland to either 5–8 or &gt;50 years of soil warming. Warming of &gt;50 years drove the ecosystem to a new steady state possessing a distinct biotic composition and reduced species richness, biomass and soil organic matter. However, the warmed state was preceded by an overreaction to warming, which was related to organism physiology and was evident after 5–8 years. Ignoring this overreaction yielded errors of &gt;100% for 83 variables when predicting their responses to a realistic warming scenario of 1 °C over 50 years, although some, including soil carbon content, remained stable after 5–8 years. This study challenges long-term ecosystem predictions made from short-term observations, and provides a framework for characterization of ecosystem responses to sustained climate change.</p>},
  author       = {Walker, Tom W.N. and Janssens, Ivan A. and Weedon, James T. and Sigurdsson, Bjarni D. and Richter, Andreas and Peñuelas, Josep and Leblans, Niki I.W. and Bahn, Michael and Bartrons, Mireia and De Jonge, Cindy and Fuchslueger, Lucia and Gargallo-Garriga, Albert and Gunnarsdóttir, Gunnhildur E. and Marañón-Jiménez, Sara and Oddsdóttir, Edda S. and Ostonen, Ivika and Poeplau, Christopher and Prommer, Judith and Radujković, Dajana and Sardans, Jordi and Sigurðsson, Páll and Soong, Jennifer L. and Vicca, Sara and Wallander, Håkan and Ilieva-Makulec, Krassimira and Verbruggen, Erik},
  issn         = {2397-334X},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {01},
  number       = {1},
  pages        = {101--108},
  publisher    = {Nature Publishing Group},
  series       = {Nature Ecology and Evolution},
  title        = {A systemic overreaction to years versus decades of warming in a subarctic grassland ecosystem},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41559-019-1055-3},
  doi          = {10.1038/s41559-019-1055-3},
  volume       = {4},
  year         = {2020},
}