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See detailL’adaptation au changement climatique en région wallonne : Fiche thématique : Biodiversité
Frisson, Gwenn ULg; Monty, Arnaud ULg; Mahy, Grégory ULg et al

Report (2011)

• Les changements attendus sont importants mais difficiles à quantifier. Seules des tendances peuvent être dégagées. • La fragmentation des habitats naturels est particulièrement poussée en Wallonie. Elle ... [more ▼]

• Les changements attendus sont importants mais difficiles à quantifier. Seules des tendances peuvent être dégagées. • La fragmentation des habitats naturels est particulièrement poussée en Wallonie. Elle constitue une lourde menace sur la biodiversité et une entrave aux changements d’aires de distribution attendus. • Développer le réseau écologique et diminuer les menaces qui pèsent actuellement sur la biodiversité est primordial pour donner une chance à la biodiversité de s’adapter au changement climatique. • Les impacts de la perte de biodiversité ne doivent pas seulement se mesurer en termes de valeur intrinsèque mais également en termes de services écosystémiques. [less ▲]

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See detailGestion de Crassula helmsii en Belgique plus difficile qu’il n’y paraît?
Delbart, Emmanuel ULg; Monty, Arnaud ULg; Mahy, Grégory ULg

in EPPO Bulletin (2011), 41

La crassule des e´tangs (Crassula helmsii) est une plante invasive (ou exotique envahissante) qui repre´sente un risque environnemental pour les milieux aquatiques en Belgique et, plus globalement, en ... [more ▼]

La crassule des e´tangs (Crassula helmsii) est une plante invasive (ou exotique envahissante) qui repre´sente un risque environnemental pour les milieux aquatiques en Belgique et, plus globalement, en Europe. Pour controˆler cette espe`ce, les acteurs de terrain disposent d’une litte´rature a priori abondante, ainsi que de plusieurs bases de donne´es relatives a` sa distribution spatiale. Néanmoins, les gestionnaires peuvent vite se sentir de´sarme´s, d’une part par le manque de clarte´ sur les moyens a` mettre en oeuvre afin d’endiguer la propagation de l’espe`ce et, d’autre part, par le manque d’exhaustivite´ des bases de donne´es. S’ajoute a` cela une insuffisance de litte´rature sur les vecteurs de dissémination a` travers les paysages. [less ▲]

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See detailWhich evolutionary mechanisms allow Senecio inaequidens DC. to face a changing climate? A synthesis
Monty, Arnaud ULg; Mahy, Grégory ULg

Poster (2010, September)

Plant populations are expected to face gradual climatic variation in the next decades. Understanding and quantifying evolutionary and non-evolutionary mechanisms allowing populations response to climate ... [more ▼]

Plant populations are expected to face gradual climatic variation in the next decades. Understanding and quantifying evolutionary and non-evolutionary mechanisms allowing populations response to climate is therefore crucial to anticipate the actual consequences of climate change on plants. However, studying the direct effects of climate change in wild populations is of little anticipating interest… there invasive plants can help! We studied the sources of phenotypic variation in populations that gradually invaded different climatic zones over the last century, and assessed the role of local adaptation, non-adaptive genetic differentiation, phenotypic plasticity and environmental maternal effects in plant population response to climate. [less ▲]

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See detailEcology and evolution of invasive plants: what to study next?
Monty, Arnaud ULg; Brown, Cynthia; Tepolt, Carolyn et al

Poster (2010, September)

In recent decades, a growing number of studies have addressed connections between ecological and evolutionary concepts in biologic invasions. These connections may be crucial for understanding the ... [more ▼]

In recent decades, a growing number of studies have addressed connections between ecological and evolutionary concepts in biologic invasions. These connections may be crucial for understanding the processes underlying invaders’ success. However, the extent to which scientists have worked on the integration of the ecology and evolution of invasive plants is poorly documented, as few attempts have been made to evaluate these efforts in invasion biology research. Such analysis can facilitate recognize well-documented relationships and identify gaps in our knowledge. In this study, we used a network-based method for visualizing the connections between major aspects of ecology and evolution in the primary research literature. Using the family Poaceae as an example, we show that ecological concepts were more studied and better interconnected than were evolutionary concepts. Several possible connections were not documented at all, representing knowledge gaps between ecology and evolution of invaders. Among knowledge gaps, the concepts of plasticity, gene flow, epigenetics and human influence were particularly under-connected. We discuss five possible research avenues to better understand the relationships between ecology and evolution in the success of Poaceae, and of alien plants in general. [less ▲]

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See detailCan we really get rid of Japanese knotweed clones? Two years of management tests in Belgium
Monty, Arnaud ULg; Delbart, Emmanuel ULg; Mahy, Grégory ULg et al

Poster (2010, September)

Japanese knotweed Fallopia japonica is an extremely abundant invasive plant in Belgium and surrounding countries. To date, no eradication method is available for managers facing the invasion of this ... [more ▼]

Japanese knotweed Fallopia japonica is an extremely abundant invasive plant in Belgium and surrounding countries. To date, no eradication method is available for managers facing the invasion of this rhizomatous plant. We tested different chemical herbicides and two application methods (spraying and stem injection), as well as mechanical treatments, on Fallopia clones throughout southern Belgium. The tested methods were selected to be potentially usable by Belgian managers, e.g. using legally accepted rates for herbicides. Stem volume, height and density reduction was assessed after one or two years depending on the treatment. No tested method allowed a complete eradication of the clone. However, stem injection with glyphosate-based herbicide caused the highest damage. The year following injection, no sprouts were observed. Two following year, however, stunted shoots sprouted. Among mechanical control measures, repeated cuts combined with native trees cuttings plantations most appreciably reduced knotweed development. The most efficient methods we tested appear as tools for curbing knotweed invasion but are not likely to be used to eradicate the species. As such they should be included in a more integrated control strategy, together with prevention and public awareness campaigns. [less ▲]

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See detailLinking concepts in the ecology and evolution of invasive plants: network analysis shows what has been most studied and identifies knowledge gaps
Vanderhoeven, Sonia ULg; Brown, Cynthia; Tepolt, Carolyn et al

in Evolutionary Applications (2010), 3(2), 193-202

In recent decades, a growing number of studies have addressed connections between ecological and evolutionary concepts in biologic invasions. These connections may be crucial for understanding the ... [more ▼]

In recent decades, a growing number of studies have addressed connections between ecological and evolutionary concepts in biologic invasions. These connections may be crucial for understanding the processes underlying invaders' success. However, the extent to which scientists have worked on the integration of the ecology and evolution of invasive plants is poorly documented, as few attempts have been made to evaluate these efforts in invasion biology research. Such analysis can facilitate recognize well-documented relationships and identify gaps in our knowledge. In this study, we used a network-based method for visualizing the connections between major aspects of ecology and evolution in the primary research literature. Using the family Poaceae as an example, we show that ecological concepts were more studied and better interconnected than were evolutionary concepts. Several possible connections were not documented at all, representing knowledge gaps between ecology and evolution of invaders. Among knowledge gaps, the concepts of plasticity, gene flow, epigenetics and human influence were particularly under-connected. We discuss five possible research avenues to better understand the relationships between ecology and evolution in the success of Poaceae, and of alien plants in general. [less ▲]

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See detailEvolution de l'espèce invasive Senecio inaequidens en réponse aux variations de climat
Monty, Arnaud ULg

Scientific conference (2010, January 21)

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See detailPhenotypic traits variation among native diploid, native tetraploid and invasive tetraploid Senecio inaequidens DC. (Asteraceae)
Monty, Arnaud ULg; Maurice, Sandrine; Mahy, Grégory ULg

in Biotechnologie, Agronomie, Société et Environnement = Biotechnology, Agronomy, Society and Environment [=BASE] (2010), 14(4), 627-632

Senecio inaequidens DC. is a rapidly spreading plant invader in Europe. In its native range, it occurs at two co-existing diploid and tetraploid cytotypes. To date, only tetraploids are reported in Europe ... [more ▼]

Senecio inaequidens DC. is a rapidly spreading plant invader in Europe. In its native range, it occurs at two co-existing diploid and tetraploid cytotypes. To date, only tetraploids are reported in Europe, even though invasive diploids were recorded in other parts of the world. We compared native diploid and both native and invasive tetraploid populations in common gardens in Europe for a suite of life history traits. Diploids were able to develop, showed high biomass production and produced more flower heads than tetraploids. In contrast, winter survival was null for diploids. It was low for native tetraploids, but reached 40% in invasive tetraploids. Results suggested that diploid cytotype tends to an annual life form when grown in Western Europe, with earlier and more abundant flowering. In contrast, the tetraploid cytotype was mainly perennial which may enhance its invasiveness. [less ▲]

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See detailEvolution of dispersal traits along an invasion route in the wind-dispersed Senecio inaequidens (Asteraceae)
Monty, Arnaud ULg; Mahy, Grégory ULg

in Oikos (2010), 119

In introduced organisms, dispersal propensity is expected to increase during range expansion. This prediction is based on the assumption that phenotypic plasticity is low compared to genetic diversity ... [more ▼]

In introduced organisms, dispersal propensity is expected to increase during range expansion. This prediction is based on the assumption that phenotypic plasticity is low compared to genetic diversity, and an increase in dispersal can be counteracted by the Allee effect. Empirical evidence in support of these hypotheses is however lacking. The present study tested for evidence of differentiation in dispersal-related traits and the Allee effect in the wind-dispersed invasive Senecio inaequidens (Asteraceae). We collected capitula from individuals in ten field populations, along an invasion route including the original introduction site in southern France. In addition, we conducted a common garden experiment from field-collected seeds and obtained capitula from individuals representing the same ten field populations. We analysed phenotypic variation in dispersal traits between field and common garden environments as a function of the distance between populations and the introduction site. Our results revealed low levels of phenotypic differentiation among populations. However, significant clinal variation in dispersal traits was demonstrated in common garden plants representing the invasion route. In field populations, similar trends in dispersal-related traits and evidence of an Allee effect were not detected. In part, our results supported expectations of increased dispersal capacity with range expansion, and emphasized the contribution of phenotypic plasticity under natural conditions. [less ▲]

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See detailHistorical landscape structure affects plant species richness in wet heathlands with complex landscape dynamics
Cristofoli, Sara; Monty, Arnaud ULg; Mahy, Grégory ULg

in Landscape & Urban Planning (2010), 98

The spatio-temporal dynamics of wet heathlands from two landscapes in high Ardenne (Belgium), as well as the consequences of such dynamics on plant communities were investigated. Past and present ... [more ▼]

The spatio-temporal dynamics of wet heathlands from two landscapes in high Ardenne (Belgium), as well as the consequences of such dynamics on plant communities were investigated. Past and present destruction and origin of habitat patches have resulted in a complex network of different aged habitat patches. Current specialist and generalist species richness were assessed in 59 patches and analyzed with respect to present and past patch spatial metrics (controlled for habitat quality). Current patch area affected specialist species richness and current patch connectivity influenced both specialist and generalist species richness. Thirteen of the 59 patches were historical patches, i.e. patches that have remained since the 1770s. In these historical patches, including past landscape structure in the analysis explained more of the variability in current species richness than the current landscape structure alone, suggesting the existence of an extinction debt. [less ▲]

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See detailLes invasions biologiques ... quand Darwin s'en mêle
Vanderhoeven, Sonia ULg; Mahy, Grégory ULg; Vanparys, Valérie et al

in Parcs & Réserves (2009), 64(4), 7-9

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See detailAn explicit test for the contribution of environmental maternal effects to rapid clinal differentiation in an invasive plant
Monty, Arnaud ULg; Lebeau, Julie; Meerts, Pierre et al

in Journal of Evolutionary Biology (2009), 22(5), 917-926

Population differentiation of alien invasive plants within their non-native range has received increasingly more attention. Common gardens are typically used to assess the levels of genotypic ... [more ▼]

Population differentiation of alien invasive plants within their non-native range has received increasingly more attention. Common gardens are typically used to assess the levels of genotypic differentiation among populations. However, in such experiments, environmental maternal effects can influence phenotypic variation among individuals if seed sources are collected from field populations under variable environmental regimes. In the present study, we investigated the causes of an altitudinal cline in an invasive plant. Seeds were collected from Senecio inaequidens (Asteraceae) populations along an altitudinal gradient in southern France. In addition, seeds from the same populations were generated by intra-population crossings in a climatic chamber. The two seed lots were grown in a common garden in Central Belgium to identify any evidence of environmentally induced maternal effects and/or an altitudinal cline in a suite of life-history traits. Results failed to detect any environmental maternal effects. However, an altitudinal cline in plant height and above-ground biomass was found to be independent of the maternal environment. [less ▲]

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See detailClinal differentiation during invasion: Senecio inaequidens (Asteraceae) along altitudinal gradients in Europe
Monty, Arnaud ULg; Mahy, Grégory ULg

in Oecologia (2009), 159(2), 305-315

The dynamics of plant population differentiation may be integral in predicting aspects of introduced species invasion. In the present study, we tested the hypothesis that European populations of Senecio ... [more ▼]

The dynamics of plant population differentiation may be integral in predicting aspects of introduced species invasion. In the present study, we tested the hypothesis that European populations of Senecio inaequidens (Asteraceae), an invasive species with South African origins, differentiated during migration from two independent introduction sites into divergent altitudinal and climatic zones. We carried out 2 years of common garden experiments with eight populations sampled from Belgian and ten populations from French altitudinal transects. The Belgian transect followed a temperature and precipitation gradient. A temperature and summer drought gradient characterized the French transect. We evaluated differentiation and clinal variation in plants germinated from field-collected seed using the following traits: days to germination, days to flowering, height at maturity, final plant height and aboveground biomass. Results showed that S. inaequidens populations differentiated in growth traits during invasion. During the 1st year of sampling, the results indicated clinal variation for growth traits along both the Belgium and French altitudinal transects. Data from the 2nd year of study demonstrated that with increasing altitude, a reduction in three growth traits, including plant height at maturity, final plant height and aboveground biomass, was detected along the French transect, but no longer along the Belgian one. Phenological traits did not exhibit a clear clinal variation along altitudinal transects. The possible evolutionary causes for the observed differentiation are discussed. [less ▲]

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See detailÉvolution des traits d’histoire de vie lors des invasions végétales
Monty, Arnaud ULg; Mahy, Grégory ULg

in Biotechnologie, Agronomie, Société et Environnement = Biotechnology, Agronomy, Society and Environment [=BASE] (2009), 13(3), 449-458

Les invasions par les plantes, malgré les problèmes qu’elles engendrent, sont des opportunités d’étude des phénomènes évolutifs rapides. Dans cet article sont présentés les principaux changements ... [more ▼]

Les invasions par les plantes, malgré les problèmes qu’elles engendrent, sont des opportunités d’étude des phénomènes évolutifs rapides. Dans cet article sont présentés les principaux changements évolutifs d’histoire de vie accompagnant les invasions végétales. Ceux-ci peuvent avoir lieu lors des différentes phases de l’invasion que sont l’introduction, la naturalisation et l’expansion proprement dite. Leur étude s’articule généralement en deux approches : les comparaisons entre populations de l’aire d’indigénat et de l’aire d’invasion d’une part, et d’autre part, les études de la différenciation au sein de l’aire d’invasion. [less ▲]

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See detailClinal differentiation during invasion: Senecio inaequidens (Asteraceae) along altitudinal gradients in Europe.
Monty, Arnaud ULg; Mahy, Grégory ULg

Poster (2009)

Plant population differentiation may play a role in decreasing the ability to predict whether, where, and when an introduced species will invade. However, few studies have addressed the level of genetic ... [more ▼]

Plant population differentiation may play a role in decreasing the ability to predict whether, where, and when an introduced species will invade. However, few studies have addressed the level of genetic change an alien species may undergo during range expansion, e.g. in response to climatic variation with altitude. In the present study, we tested the hypothesis that invasive populations of Senecio inaequidens (Asteraceae) differentiated during migration from two independent introduction sites into divergent altitudinal and climatic zones. We carried out two years of common garden experiments with eight populations from a Belgian altitudinal transect and ten populations from similar French transect. Climatic analysis revealed that the Belgian transect followed a temperature and precipitation gradient. A temperature and summer drought gradient characterized the French study site. We evaluated differentiation and clinal variation in the following characters: days to germination, days to flowering, height at maturity, final plant height and aboveground biomass. Results showed that S. inaequidens populations differentiated in growth traits during invasion. First year of experiment, regressing population growth trait means against source population altitude indicated the presence of clinal variation along both transects. Second year, similar results were found along the French transect, i.e. a reduction in height at maturity, plant height and aboveground biomass with increasing altitude. Including seed mass as a covariate did not change the outcome of the analysis. The possible evolutionary causes for the differentiation observed are discussed. [less ▲]

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See detailSources of phenotypic variation of life history traits in an invasive species, Senecio inaequidens DC. (Asteraceae)
Monty, Arnaud ULg; Mahy, Grégory ULg

Conference (2009)

The importance of different sources of phenotypic variation, namely adaptation, phenotypic plasticity, environmental maternal effects, ploidy level and genetic drift, were estimated in several life ... [more ▼]

The importance of different sources of phenotypic variation, namely adaptation, phenotypic plasticity, environmental maternal effects, ploidy level and genetic drift, were estimated in several life history traits among populations of an invasive plant species within its invasion range. Several common garden experiments were set out, two of which in a reciprocal transplants experiment. The populations considered in this study were located in Belgium, in France and in the native range of the model species. Senecio inaequidens DC. (Asteraceae) is native to Africa. It was introduced in Europe via wool trade in the late 19th century. In the native range, the species occurs at two co-existing cytotypes: diploid and tetraploid. Only tetraploid individuals are reported in Europe. The particular and well-documented invasion history of S. inaequidens makes it an excellent plant model for evolutionary studies. Several life history traits were measured, related to germination, growth and sexual reproduction. The sources of phenotypic variation in those traits were analysed with respect to climatic variation along altitudinal gradients in the invaded areas. The influence of the ploidy level and the range (native vs introduced) on those traits was also analysed. Results showed that diploid and tetraploid populations differed, mainly in winter survival capacity. Along altitudinal gradients, clinal phenotypic differentiations with a genetic basis were observed among populations. However, environmental maternal effects were found to significantly influence phenotypic variation in areas with harsh climatic conditions. Monty A., Mahy G. 2009. Clinal differentiation during invasion: Senecio inaequidens (Asteraceae) along altitudinal gradients in Europe. Oecologia 159:305–315. Monty A., Lebeau J., Meerts P., Mahy G. 2009. An explicit test for the contribution of environmental maternal effects to rapid clinal differentiation in an invasive plant. Journal of Evolutionary Biology22: 917-936 [less ▲]

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