Sally E. Koerner

ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-6403-7513

Sally Koerner is a community ecologist focused on understanding the drivers of biodiversity and how global change is altering those dynamics. She focuses primarily on grass dominated systems and uses a mixture of experimental manipulations, observational studies, and meta-analyses.

There are 33 included publications by Sally E. Koerner :

TitleDateViewsBrief Description
Ambient changes exceed treatment effects on plant species abundance in global change experiments 2018 14 The responses of species to environmental changes will determine future community composition and ecosystem function. Many syntheses of global change experiments examine the magnitude of treatment effect sizes, but we lack an understanding of how pla...
Asymmetric responses of primary productivity to climate extremes: A synthesis of grassland precipitation manipulation experiments 2017 12 Climatic changes are altering Earth's hydrological cycle, resulting in altered precipitation amounts, increased interannual variability of precipitation, and more frequent extreme precipitation events. These trends will likely continue into the futur...
Asynchrony among local communities stabilizes ecosystem function of metacommunities 2017 10 Temporal stability of ecosystem functioning increases the predictability and reliability of ecosystem services, and understanding the drivers of stability across spatial scales is important for land management and policy decisions. We used species-le...
Change in dominance determines herbivore effects on plant biodiversity 2018 13 Herbivores alter plant biodiversity (species richness) in many of the world’s ecosystems, but the magnitude and the direction of herbivore effects on biodiversity vary widely within and among ecosystems. One current theory predicts that herbivores en...
Changes in plant community composition, not diversity, during a decade of nitrogen and phosphorus additions drive above-ground productivity in a tallgrass prairie 2014 8 1. Nutrient additions typically increase terrestrial ecosystem productivity, reduce plant diversity and alter plant community composition; however, the effects of P additions and interactions between N and P are understudied. 2. We added both N (10 g...
Characterizing differences in precipitation regimes of extreme wet and dry years: Implications for climate change experiments 2015 7 Climate change is intensifying the hydrologic cycle and is expected to increase the frequency of extreme wet and dry years. Beyond precipitation amount, extreme wet and dry years may differ in other ways, such as the number of precipitation events, e...
A comprehensive approach to analyzing community dynamics using rank abundance curves 2019 14 Univariate and multivariate methods are commonly used to explore the spatial and temporal dynamics of ecological communities, but each has limitations, including oversimplification or abstraction of communities. Rank abundance curves (RACs) potential...
Critical climate periods for grassland productivity on China’s Loess Plateau 2017 5 Strong correlations between aboveground net primary productivity (ANPP) of grasslands and mean annual temperature or precipitation have been widely reported across regional or continental scales; however, inter-annual variation in these climate facto...
Deadwood stocks increase with selective logging and large tree frequency in Gabon 2017 8 Deadwood is a major component of aboveground biomass (AGB) in tropical forests and is important as habitat and for nutrient cycling and carbon storage. With deforestation and degradation taking place throughout the tropics, improved understanding of ...
Droughts and Downpours: Resolving the disconnect between rainfall manipulation experiments and terrestrial ecosystem models 2014 10 The biological responses to precipitation within the terrestrial components of Earth system models, or land surface models (LSMs), are mechanistically simple and poorly constrained, leaving projections of terrestrial ecosystem functioning and feedbac...
The ecological consequences of forest elephant declines for Afrotropical forests 2018 8 Poaching is rapidly extirpating African forest elephants (Loxodonta cyclotis) from most of their historical range, leaving vast areas of elephant-free tropical forest. Elephants are ecological engineers that create and maintain forest habitat; thus, ...
Fire frequency drives habitat selection by a diverse herbivore guild impacting top-down control of plant communities in an African savanna 2016 11 In areas with diverse herbivore communities such as African savannas, the frequency of disturbance by fire may alter the top–down role of different herbivore species on plant community dynamics. In a seven year experiment in the Kruger National Park,...
Forest structure determines large liana abundance and distribution in Gabon 2017 15 Aim: Lianas are an important component of forest structure in the tropics, accounting for up to 45% of total stems. Mounting evidence that tropical forests are undergoing structural changes, with a growing abundance of lianas reducing forest carbon s...
A framework for quantifying the magnitude and variability of community responses to global change drivers 2015 9 A major challenge in global change ecology is to predict the trajectory and magnitude of community change in response to global change drivers (GCDs). Here, we present a new framework that not only increases the predictive power of individual studies...
Global change effects on plant communities are magnified by time and the number of global change factors imposed 2019 46 Global change drivers (GCDs) are expected to alter community structure and consequently, the services that ecosystems provide. Yet, few experimental investigations have examined effects of GCDs on plant community structure across multiple ecosystem t...
Herbivore size matters for productivity-richness relationships in African savannas 2017 4 1.Productivity and herbivory often interact to shape plant community composition and species richness with levels of production mediating the impact of herbivory. However, differences in herbivore traits such as size, feeding guild and dietary requir...
Hunting induced defaunation gradient in a Gabonese tropical forest 2017 13 1.Anthropocene defaunation is the global phenomenon of human-induced animal biodiversity loss. Understanding the patterns and process of defaunation is critical to predict outcomes for wildlife populations and cascading consequences for ecosystem fun...
Interactive effects of grazing, drought, and fire on grassland plant communities in North America and South Africa 2014 47 Grazing, fire, and climate shape mesic grassland communities. With global change altering all three factors, understanding how grasslands respond to changes in these combined drivers may aid in projecting future changes in grassland ecosystems. We ma...
Invasibility of a mesic grassland depends on the time-scale of fluctuating resources 2015 10 1. Global change is increasing the frequency and magnitude of resource fluctuations (pulses) at multiple time-scales. According to the fluctuating resource availability hypothesis (FRAH), susceptibility of an ecosystem to invasion (i.e. invasibility)...
Loss of a single large grazer impacts savanna grassland plant communities similarly in North America and South Africa 2014 13 Large herbivore grazing is a widespread disturbance in mesic savanna grasslands which increases herbaceous plant community richness and diversity. However, humans are modifying the impacts of grazing on these ecosystems by removing grazers. A more ge...
Nutrient additions cause divergence of tallgrass prairie plant communities resulting in loss of ecosystem stability 2016 10 1.Nitrogen (N) deposition and phosphorus (P) deposition due to pollution and land-use change are dramatically altering biogeochemical cycles. These altered nutrient inputs affect plant communities by generally increasing dominance and reducing divers...
Plant community response to loss of large herbivores differs between North American and South African savanna grasslands 2014 21 Herbivory and fire shape plant community structure in grass-dominated ecosystems, but these disturbance regimes are being altered around the world. To assess the consequences of such alterations, we excluded large herbivores for seven years from mesi...
Poaching empties critical Central African wilderness of forest elephants 2017 3 Elephant populations are in peril everywhere, but forest elephants in Central Africa have sustained alarming losses in the last decade [1]. Large, remote protected areas are thought to best safeguard forest elephants by supporting large populations b...
Rainfall variability has minimal effects on grassland recovery from repeated grazing 2013 69 Question: Mesic grasslands experience a complex disturbance regime including frequent fire, grazing by large ungulates and strong inter-annual climate variability. As a result of climate change, growing season precipitation regimes are predicted to b...
Rapid recovery of ecosystem function following extreme drought in a South African savanna 2020 78 Climatic extremes, such as severe drought, are expected to increase in frequency and magnitude with climate change. Thus, identifying mechanisms of resilience is critical to predicting the vulnerability of ecosystems. An exceptional drought (
Responses to fire differ between South African and North American grassland communities 2013 8 Question: Does fire frequency affect mesic grassland plant community structure and composition similarly in North America and South Africa? Location: Konza Prairie Biological Station (KNZ), Kansas, USA, and Ukulinga Research Farm (URF), KwaZulu-Natal...
Shared drivers but divergent ecological responses: Insights from long-term experiments in savanna grasslands 2016 27 Fire and grazing, key determinants of structure and function of savanna grasslands worldwide, have been extensively altered by humans. We used existing long-term manipulations of fire and grazing in North American and South African mesic savanna gras...
Small-scale patch structure in North American and South African grasslands responds differently to fire and grazing 2013 14 Fire and grazing significantly impact small-scale patch structure and dynamics in savanna grasslands. We assessed small-scale grass-forb associations in long-term fire and grazing experiments in North America (NA) and Southern Africa (SA). Transects ...
Soil microbial respiration rate and temperature sensitivity along a north-south forest transect in eastern China: Patterns and influencing factors 2016 7 Soil organic matter is one of the most important carbon (C) pools in terrestrial ecosystems, and future warming from climate change will likely alter soil C storage via temperature effects on microbial respiration. In this study, we collected forest ...
Stability of tallgrass prairie during a 19-year increase in growing season precipitation 2012 6 1. Precipitation is considered to be a key driver of ecosystem processes in mesic grasslands, and climate models predict changes in the amount and intensity of precipitation under future global change scenarios. Although most experimental rainfall st...
Temporal heterogeneity increases with spatial heterogeneity in ecological communities 2018 8 Heterogeneity is increasingly recognized as a foundational characteristic of ecological systems. Under global change, understanding temporal community heterogeneity is necessary for predicting the stability of ecosystem functions and services. Indeed...
Too wet for frogs: Changes in a tropical leaf litter frog community coincide with La Nina 2015 19 Extreme climatic events such as the El Niño Southern Oscillation profoundly affect many plants and animals, including amphibians, which are strongly negatively affected by drought conditions. How amphibians respond to exceptionally high precipitation...
Wanted: New allometric equations for large lianas and African lianas 2016 9 Liana abundance appears to be increasing, possibly to the detriment of trees, but methods for measuring liana biomass are undependable. We show that five commonly used allometric equations produce disparate results and discuss two large information g...