The impacts of extreme climatic events on wild plant populations

Robert C. Godfree, Lyndsey M. Vivian, Jennifer C. Pierson

Research output: A Conference proceeding or a Chapter in BookChapterpeer-review


Despite growing evidence that species and ecosystems are responding to broad climatic trends globally, relatively little is known about the role that extreme climatic or weather events (ECEs) play in driving population and ecosystem change. The objective of this chapter is to provide an overview of the nature of ECEs and their impacts on the demography of wild plant populations in both terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. We do this by drawing out some of the main lessons that have been learned from the past and contemporary study of ECEs, focusing primarily on case studies involving Australian vegetation, and then use these to identify potential phytosociological and evolutionary roles of extreme events within the context of anthropogenic climate change. We then discuss the contribution that genomics can make to our understanding of the demographic and evolutionary impact of historical ECEs on plant populations, and propose four key questions that are likely to shape future research in this field.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPlant Genomics and Climate Change
EditorsDavid Edwards, Jacqueline Batley
Place of PublicationNew York
Number of pages33
ISBN (Electronic)9781493935369
ISBN (Print)9781493935345
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2016
Externally publishedYes


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