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Microclimatic buffering of plant responses to macroclimate warming in temperate forests

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






 FORMICA project word cloud

Explore the words cloud of the FORMICA project. It provides you a very rough idea of what is the project "FORMICA" about.

arising    microclimatic    experiment    acting    localized    buffered    contains    quantify    majority    microclimate    managers    temperate    gradients    terrain    regimes    evident    threatening    diversity    integrative    near    land    empirical    ecology    recent    urgently    data    forestry    ground    species    strategies    vegetation    understand    climatology    transplant    plays    macroclimate    almost    biodiversity    lagging    models    time    cutting    slow    driving    fluorescent    region    biological    vast    perform    plant    first    ignore    understorey    forecast    individual    geographic    microtemperature    microclimates    impacts    warming    policy    mechanism    communities    ecosystems    climate    heating    global    temperature    loggers    tubes    ecosystem    exist    warms    formica    trees    edge    reshape    interdisciplinary    habitats    modulating    makers    forest    buffering    plants    experimental    date    overstorey    topography    measured    demographic    forests   

Project "FORMICA" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
city: GENT
postcode: 9000

contact info
title: n.a.
name: n.a.
surname: n.a.
function: n.a.
email: n.a.
telephone: n.a.
fax: n.a.

 Coordinator Country Belgium [BE]
 Project website
 Total cost 1˙498˙469 €
 EC max contribution 1˙498˙469 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.1. (EXCELLENT SCIENCE - European Research Council (ERC))
 Code Call ERC-2017-STG
 Funding Scheme ERC-STG
 Starting year 2018
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2018-02-01   to  2023-01-31


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 
1    UNIVERSITEIT GENT BE (GENT) coordinator 1˙498˙469.00


 Project objective

Recent global warming is acting across ecosystems and threatening biodiversity. Yet, due to slow responses, many biological communities are lagging behind warming of the macroclimate (the climate of a large geographic region). The buffering of microclimates near the ground measured in localized areas, arising from terrain features such as vegetation and topography, can explain why many species are lagging behind macroclimate warming. However, almost all studies ignore the effects of microclimatic buffering and key uncertainties still exist about this mechanism. Microclimates are particularly evident in forests, where understorey habitats are buffered by overstorey trees. In temperate forests, the understorey contains the vast majority of plant diversity and plays an essential role in driving ecosystem processes.

The overall goal of FORMICA (FORest MICroclimate Assessment) is to quantify and understand the role of microclimatic buffering in modulating forest understorey plant responses to macroclimate warming. We will perform the best assessment to date of the effects of microclimates on plants by applying microtemperature loggers, experimental heating, fluorescent tubes and a large-scale transplant experiment in temperate forests across Europe. For the first time, plant data from the individual to ecosystem level will be related to microclimate along wide temperature gradients and forest management regimes. The empirical results will then be integrated in cutting-edge demographic distribution models to forecast plant diversity in temperate forests as macroclimate warms.

FORMICA will provide the first integrative study on microclimatic buffering of macroclimate warming in forests. Interdisciplinary concepts and methods will be applied, including from climatology, forestry and ecology. FORMICA will reshape our current understanding of the impacts of climate change on forests and help land managers and policy makers to develop urgently needed adaptation strategies.


List of deliverables.
Data Management Plan Open Research Data Pilot 2019-04-26 10:00:10

Take a look to the deliverables list in detail:  detailed list of FORMICA deliverables.


year authors and title journal last update
List of publications.
2019 Pieter De Frenne, Florian Zellweger, Francisco Rodríguez-Sánchez, Brett R. Scheffers, Kristoffer Hylander, Miska Luoto, Mark Vellend, Kris Verheyen, Jonathan Lenoir
Global buffering of temperatures under forest canopies
published pages: 744-749, ISSN: 2397-334X, DOI: 10.1038/s41559-019-0842-1
Nature Ecology & Evolution 3/5 2019-09-09
2019 Shiyu Ma, Pieter De Frenne, Nico Boon, Jörg Brunet, Sara A O Cousins, Guillaume Decocq, Annette Kolb, Isa Lemke, Jaan Liira, Tobias Naaf, Anna Orczewska, Jan Plue, Monika Wulf, Kris Verheyen
Plant species identity and soil characteristics determine rhizosphere soil bacteria community composition in European temperate forests
published pages: , ISSN: 1574-6941, DOI: 10.1093/femsec/fiz063
FEMS Microbiology Ecology 95/6 2019-09-17

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