I (Seraina) am just back from the 3rd Wild Plant Pathosystems Conference in Frankfurt, which was all about “sick plants in the wild”. It was a very small meeting with excellent presentations of amazing scientists, a museum tour, wine tasting and walks in the forests. I was honoured to present my fungal pathogen results from the PaNDiv experiment and get the chance to talk to many interesting people, working with a wide variety of pathosystems. I learned a lot about viruses and fungal pathogens and their vectors, about the possibility to identify different Uromyces species based on their smell, about the pathogen communities on different plant species and much much more.
Conference impressions on twitter #wpp3 :
The best thing about Christmas is the BES Annual Meeting. Some of the lab members – Seraina, Eric and Noémie – attended the venue in Birmingham and had the chance to follow an extraordinary selection of talks and posters. Among others, we saw a great session about long-term experiments, what has been done and what is to do next (Andy Hector, Alexandra Weigelt and others). To the question “are you also part of a long term experiment?”, we are now answering: “we just started one”. We also saw presentations about phylogenetic and functional traits linked to multifunctionality (Y. Le Bagousse-Pinguet), upscaling BEF experiments results to landscape diversity (G. Le Provost), a great citizen science project looking at herbivory drivers on oaks (E. Valdés-Correcher) and my personal favourite, tracing C and N flows in grassland plants and soil food webs (M. Chomel).
A whole wall was covered in drawings due to the Journal of Applied Ecology brilliant suggestion to “draw your study organism” (see Seraina’s work of art, #PaNDiv), and we could even play cards with the Catastrophic game supporting systems thinking (P. Holland).
Let’s not forget the great poster about sick plants in grassland communities (S. Cappelli) and a presentation disentangling nitrogen direct and indirect effects on decomposition (N. Pichon).
What a nice and motivating end to 2018 and look forward to 2019!
NP & SC
Study organism drawings
The vegetative traits are for sure right
Noémie and the decomposition
Another highlight of the conference: Phil Grime in front of his poster
Seraina and sick plants
Some people from our Lab – Maria, Noëlle and Abiel – as well as Markus Fischer have been to the Ecosystem Services Partnership (ESP) Conference 2018 in San Sebastian, Spain.
We enjoyed a week of great talks and keynotes but also other “services” like local customs showcased during the conference, all kinds of pintxos, as well as the beautiful sights of the city and surrounding landscapes and see.
Our session T2b Linking land management and biodiversity change to ecosystem services organized by Maria was met with great interest by participants. We had lively discussion on how we can bridge from ecosystem functioning to ecosystem services to policy and how we should not forget that they are underpinned by biodiversity. We also agreed that a more mechanistic understanding would further the usefulness of the ecosystem service concept.
Maria presenting her talk
Basque stone-lifting before the poster session
Noëlle and Maria on the beach