Integrated European
Long-Term Ecosystem, critical zone and
socio-ecological Research

New eLTER PLUS Nature Communications paper in cooperation with forestREplot

30 October 2023

A scientific paper in Nature Communications acknowledges the eLTER PLUS project. It has been developed in cooperation with forestREplot, which is a database of long-term forest herb layer data of European broadleaf forests also including a couple of LTER Europe sites (e.g. LTER Zöbelboden in Austria). 

The paper combines vegetation resurveys from 52 sites across 13 European countries to test how changes in ungulate herbivory and eutrophication drive long-term changes in forest understorey communities. It claims that increases in herbivory were associated with elevated temporal species turnover, however, identities of winner and loser species depended on nitrogen (N) levels. Under low levels of N-deposition, herbivory favored threatened and small-ranged species while reducing the proportion of non-native and nutrient-demanding species. Yet all these trends were reversed under high levels of N-deposition. 

Read more in the paper here.

Fig. 1 Spatial distribution of resurvey sites, N-deposition in the year 2000, and changes in (Δ) herbivory pressure across Central Europe.