INTERNATIONAL LONG TERM
ECOLOGICAL RESEARCH
INTERNATIONAL LONG TERM
ECOLOGICAL RESEARCH
The earth is what we all have in common.   Wendell Berry
Heathland restoration in the Netherlands
Nitrogen deposition (mostly through fossil fuel combustion and high-intensity agriculture) causes a higher acidity of the soils which inhibits decomposition. Also, chemical changes occur which reduce the availability of phosphorus for the soil fauna such as microarthropods. Liming appears to have even a reinforcing effect on phosphorus availability, because phosphorus is then bound to calcium, a compound of the lime. Therefore, new restoration projects focus on rock dust as a replacement. Ideally, nitrogen deposition will be reduced soon. If there is sufficient loam in the soil, it still recovers, as does the soil fauna. ► Contact: Henk Siepel, Radboud University Nijmegen, The Netherlands. 
The earth is what we all have in common.   Wendell Berry
Heathland restoration in the Netherlands
At the Veluwe site, a range of restoration projects are ongoing or planned regarding heathlands and forests. The area defined as ‘the Veluwe’ lies in the province of Gelderland, the Netherlands, west of the river Ijssel and north of the river Rhine. The region hosts the largest connected nature area of the country: around 91.947 ha are part of the Natura 2000 area. The natural landscape consists of a mix of forests, heathlands, sand drifts, lakes, and moorlands. ► All images by Henk Siepel.

There is nothing more frightful than ignorance in action.   Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Understanding climate change impact on alpine forbs in the French Alps
In high altitudes, vegetation periods are rather short. Snowmelt brings ample water, and as soon as temperatures are above freezing, plants start to grow. These plants must rapidly activate photosynthesis to use the short growth period effectively. However, strong solar radiation in late spring enhances the risk of photodamage. A study in the Zone Atellier Alpes used photobiology and UV-induced fluorescence to measure the mechanisms how Alpine forbs alter the UV transmittance of their leafs. These mechanisms are well adapted to particular places and conditions. Therefore, rapidly changing climatic conditions now endangers these plants' ability to respond effectively. ► Contact: Matthew Robson, University of Helsinki, Finland.
There is nothing more frightful than ignorance in action.   Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Understanding climate change impact on alpine forbs in the French Alps
The LTSER Zone Atelier Alpes is an interdisciplinary observation and research facility on the trajectories and functioning of the socio-ecosystems of the French Alps. It covers the entire French Alpine massif, as defined by the Alpine Convention. This enables to cover the broad range of climatic and land use gradients affecting the alpine socio-ecosystems. The platform hosts several workshop sites dedicated to the long term monitoring of social-ecological systems, a large set of permanent plots located along several elevational transects, a network of sentinel alpine pastures, etc. ► Images: Pedro J. Aphalo

You cannot protect the environment unless you empower people and inform them.   Wangari Maathai
Burying 80.000 tea bags around the world: TeaComposition
When soil organisms break down organic matter, they release different gases. Depending on how strong this so-called litter-decomposition works, some areas act as greenhouse gas sinks, whereas others become sources. Understanding this process and its dynamics world-wide is essential contribution to predicting climate change. Usual green and rooibos tea-bags are placed in the ground and mass loss is followed through time. In this way, decomposition rates can be observed around the world. This resource-efficient method is suitable to gather data also in areas where data is usually scarce, but significant for global understanding. ► Contact: Ika Djukic, Environment Agency Austria. 
You cannot protect the environment unless you empower people and inform them.   Wangari Maathai
Burying 80.000 tea bags around the world: TeaComposition
TeaComposition is one of the ILTER Research Initiatives and receives co-funding from ILTER since 2013. More than 80.000 teabags have been buried at almost 600 terrestrial and 300 aquatic sites, trough an ongoing collaborative effort of more than 300 institutions and several research networks collaborating with ILTER. UNILEVER is kindly sponsoring the study in that it has provided 63.000 teabags. ► All images by Ika Djukic. 
The first law of ecology is that everything is related to everything else.   Barry Commoner
Biodiversity management of temperate native forests in Tasmania, Australia
Tasmanian tall wet eucalyptus forests belong to the most productive temperate ecosystems in the world. The Landscape Context Planning System is a novel way to implement a biodiversity landscape approach. This system guides forest retention strategies and helps to preserve these valuable ecosystems for future generations. Ongoing activities include bird monitoring using bioacoustic technology, habitat mapping using airborne and spaceborne LiDAR (radar-like measurements using light), and monitoring carbon-fluxes in relation to the forests' eco-physiological response to weather. ► Contact: Marie Yee, Sustainable Timber Tasmania; Mark Grant, The University of Queensland, Australia. 
The first law of ecology is that everything is related to everything else.   Barry Commoner
Biodiversity management of temperate native forests in Tasmania, Australia
At the TERN Warra Tall Eucalypt SuperSite, long-term biotic responses are monitored to natural and anthropogenic disturbance regimes. The site is a unique research hub for studying the dynamics of tall wet eucalypt forest, undertaking detailed baseline monitoring of cryptic biota, hosting multidisciplinary research that monitors long term biotic responses to natural and anthropogenic disturbance regimes. ► Images below by Marie Yee. 
The greatest threat to our planet is the belief that someone else will save it.   Robert Swan
Preserving valuable soil for agriculture in Palestine
Traditional agriculture and grazing are practiced in a semi-arid environment with an annual rainfall of 246 l/m2. The effects of common agricultural practices on different soil properties are measured using different methods. Detailed knowledge on soil chemistry and physics, and recently also biology, helps to best manage and preserve soil functioning for sustainable agriculture in spite of a challenging climatic situation. ► Contact: via ILTER secretariat. 
The greatest threat to our planet is the belief that someone else will save it.   Robert Swan
Preserving valuable soil for agriculture in Palestine
The Wadi Nar station lies at 532 meters above sea level. Palestine does not yet have an LTER network, but some very promising preliminary LTER work is going on, and Palestinian researchers are in contact with ILTER. For instance, this site also takes part in the ILTER Research Initiative TeaComposition. ► Images below by Israa Alassa.