Climate altered ecosystem level evolutionary feedbacks: Implications for the linkage between genes and ecosystems
Understanding the consequences of climate change for the linkage and feedback between genes and ecosystems is one of the most challenging questions in evolutionary ecology. Here we show climate driven evolution in plants alters the linkage and feedback between functional plant traits and ecosystem processes at the landscape level.
Specifically, we show a linkage between bud break phenology and soil nitrogen that suggests variation in mean annual temperature soil nutrients drives divergence in phenology and phenology is correlated with soil conditioning. In addition, Fst and Qst comparisons indicate that bud break phenology is under directional selection. These results are amongst the first to show that climate change will alter the effects species have on their surrounding environment and provide insight into potential climate driven ecosystem level disassembly.