P9G: Integrated modeling of tree individuals and animal population dynamics (TreeDì_P9G Modeling)

Individual tree-based modeling approaches rest on the assumption that resource supply and tree performance are spatially explicit processes at a local neighborhood scale. Models built on pairwise interactions suffer from the fact that local neighborhoods beyond the interaction partners are not taken into account. The focus of TreeDì, on the one hand, on binary interactions between tree species pairs (TSPs), and on the other hand, on the wider neighborhood surrounding the TSPs allows to model interaction coefficients between tree pairs as a function of neighborhood diversity. This neighborhood diversity can also take functional or phylogenetic diversity into account. This project will develop a novel modeling approach addressing the interplay between (i) tree individuals, (ii) the local abiotic environment and (iii) the populations of herbivores, pathogens and rhizosphere species composing the above- and belowground food webs. Objectives: To model the dynamics of herbivore, pathogen and rhizosphere populations on landscapes (grids) composed of tree individuals as habitat compartments (grid cells) To establish spatially-explicit models of tree individuals, their tree-tree interactions, and neighborhood effects To predict tree growth in novel models synthesizing population- and individual-level processes for animals and trees, respectively, which will address interaction processes such as enemy dilution and facilitation

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