Back from SFEcologie 2018

We just came back from SFEcologie 2018 — a great conference in Rennes!

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Alix presented her latest work on seasonal dynamic food webs; Coralie had a poster on diversity maintenance in (also seasonal) theoretical competitive communities, and myself a presentation of our empirical analyses of phytoplankton community dynamics.

I really enjoyed Teja Tscharnkte’s plenary on integrating biodiversity services in agriculture.

A particularly interesting feature was his focus on small-scale agriculture: a large amount of field borders and configurational heterogeneity seems to be very beneficial to biodiversity and, in turn, to the services it provides. Perhaps we ought to try to re-establish in Europe some of the smallholder farming that is commonplace in a large portion of the world (and essential to food security in thirld-world countries).

In fact, in his plenary on biodiversity , David Tilman also talked quite a bit about agriculture — and why changing the current model to less meat and less sugar-heavy processed foods might be good for both human and ecosystem health .

Plenty of other interesting talks to listen to. One thing that’s really nice at large conferences such as these: you always learn about new systems by attending a session you did not really plan to go to. In my case, super-diverse tropical spider communities.

Looking forward to the next one! As far as we know, this will be in 2020 and in Edinburgh, as a joint meeting with the BES.

— Frederic


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