New article out : Why are woody plants fleshy‐fruited at low elevations? Evidence from a high‐elevation oceanic island

New article published in Journal of Vegetation Science, that makes the cover of the journal's current issue ! See the abstract below and article on JVS's blog



The composition of fruit types, fleshy vs dry fruits, greatly influences the functioning of plant communities. Literature documenting spatial patterns of fruit types at fine scale is abundant. However, studies at larger geographical scale remain scarce, especially on high‐elevation oceanic islands that provide a great environmental heterogeneity. Here, we investigated how abiotic factors explained the proportion of fleshy‐fruited species (pFF) on Réunion. We asked (a) which abiotic factors were most related to pFF, (b) if fleshy‐fruited canopy species were more sensitive than fleshy‐fruited shrubs to harsh climatic conditions and (c) what are the relationships between pFF, endemism and phylogenetic relatedness.

Lire la suite

A new moss record for La Réunion


Une espèce des régions montagneuses d'Amérique latine, Leptodontium stellatifolium, est reportée pour la première fois à La Réunion. C'est une disjonction géographique majeure.  L'espèce est ici illustrée et décrite à partir du matériel de La Réunion, et cette disjonction géographique considérable est discutée. Des explications à cette distribution sont suggérées. Une clé de détermination du genre Leptodontium pour la Réunion est proposée.

Illustration de Leptodontium stellatifolium par Patricia M. Eckel

Cette étude taxonomique est incluse dans le projet Net Biome, ANR moveclim.



A roadmap for Island biology

A recent paper, following the conference of Island Biology 2016 in Azores, presents the next 50 fundamental questions in Island Biology, celebrating the 50 years of The Theory of Island Biogeography. We hope this paper will inspire many more young and older scientists to undertake their studies on the vibrant field of Island Biology.


Article: Patiño, J., Whittaker, R.J., Borges, P.A.V., Fernández-Palacios, J.M., Ah-Peng, C., Araújo, M.B., Ávila, S.P., Cardoso, P., Cornuault, J., de Boer, E.J., de Nascimento, L., Gil, A., González-Castro, A., Gruner, D.S., Heleno, R., Hortal, J., Illera, J.C., Kaiser-Bunbury, C.N., Matthews, T.J., Papadopoulou, A., Pettorelli, N., Price, J.P., Santos, A.M.C., Steinbauer, M.J., Triantis, K.A., Valente, L., Vargas, P., Weigelt, P., Emerson, B.C., 2017. A roadmap for island biology: 50 fundamental questions after 50 years of The Theory of Island Biogeography. Journal of Biogeography: n/a-n/a. DOI:10.1111/jbi.12986


The role of epiphytic bryophytes in interception, storage, and the regulated release of atmospheric moisture in a tropical montane cloud forest

New article out !


  • Investigation of cloud water interception in a tropical montane cloud forest.
  • Forest ecohydrological functioning investigated using two liverwort species.
  • Novel approach using lysimeters to quantify cloud water flux through bryophytes.
  • Species intercept cloud water efficiently, but differ in water-holding capacity and flux.
  • Differences in CWI related to plant architecture as well as microhabitat.

Lire la suite

L'UMR PVBMT recrute des entomologistes

Dans le cadre du projet FEDER DIVINES (Suivi de la biodiversité et Innovation pour l’acquisition des connaissances des EcoSystèmes naturels du bien classé patrimoine mondial à La Réunion), notre équipe recrute pour  24 mois deux entomologistes:

Un assistant ingénieur et un ingénieur de recherches à temps partiel 70%.

Veuillez contacter pour plus d'informations.

Date limite de candidature: 11 avril 2017

Les fiches de poste sont à ces liens:

IGR entomo

ASI entomologiste




Bryophytes of Kenya's coastal forests - A guide to common species

Bryophytes of Kenya's coastal forests - A guide to common species
Authors : Wilding N., Hedderson T., Ah-Peng C & Malombe I.
Date: dec. 2016

Front page of the guideThis guide was produced in the framework of the Kenyan Coastal forest project funded by the Indian Ocean Commission (FED/20015/358-516-SVC-101). This field guide presents 20 species of bryophytes (12 mosses and 8 liverworts) commonly encountered in Kenya's coastal forest region. Each species is accompanied by high quality images and easy to understand descriptions. A glossary of terms is provided as well as further reading and references on African bryophytes. Lire la suite

Contrasting predation services of predator and omnivore diversity mediated by invasive ants in a tropical agroecosystem

New article published in Basic & Applied Ecology :


cover_bae_s14391791Invasive natural enemies are known to either strengthen or weaken the suppression of herbivorous arthropods. However, the impact of invasive species on the predation service provided by natural enemy diversity remains largely unexplored. Here, we tease apart the roles of invasive ants as providers of a predation service and a potential disservice, i.e. reducing the diversity of natural enemies. In mango orchards on Reunion Island, we evaluated the predation service in 20 open fields by simultaneously monitoring the predation on bait eggs and arthropod communities in two strata: the ground surface and the mango tree canopy. Lire la suite

The tale of Gastrodia similis, a terrestrial endemic orchid in La Réunion

Once established, second-growth forests dominated by alien plants may provide suitable environmental conditions for the maintenance of populations of some rare native species, and thus should not be neglected in conservation studies.


Pix: Gastrodia similis in the forest of Mare longue (credit: F. Martos)

We illustrate the case of Gastrodia similis Bosser, a small terrestrial orchid endemic to the lowland rainforest of Reunion island. Despite some very specific ecological requirements (necessary mycorrhizal symbiosis with wood-decay fungi and pollination by specialized drosophilid flies), the populations of this rare species are spreading beneath some secondary forests growing at low altitude, extending northward the species geographical distribution. Other native species might also restore populations in this place. We call for more biodiversity assessments and experimental trials in these hybrid ecosystems.

Augros S. & Martos F. (2016). Nouvelles observations de Gastrodia similis Bosser dans le Nord de La Réunion et intérêt des écosystèmes hybrides pour la conservation de la biodiversité de l'île (Orchidaceae, Gastrodieae), Cahiers scientifiques de l'océan indien occidental 7:3-6