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Unité Mixte de Recherche Inra-Univ. Bordeaux "Biodiversité Gènes et Communautés" - Biogeco

Unité mixte de recherche (Inra, Univ. Bordeaux 1) Biodiversité, gènes et communautés (Biogeco)


INRA Bordeaux-Aquitaine
Site de Recherches Forêt-Bois
69 route d'Arcachon
33612 CESTAS Cedex - FRANCE

Caignard Thomas (doctorant)

05 40 00 30 06




Equipe Ecologie et GénomiqueFonctionnelles


UMR 1202 Biodiversité Gènes & Communautés
Université Bordeaux
Bâtiment B2 - avenue des facultés
33405 TALENCE Cedex – France

Courriel :thomas.caignard_at_pierroton.inra.fr

Sujet de thèse 

Tree population responses to climate change: monitoring reproduction into the wild.


2013-2014 | Master 2 : Management Forestier  | Bordeaux Science Agro

2012-2013 | Master 1 : Biologie des écosystèmes continentaux | Université de Bordeaux 1

  • Année universitaire passée dans le cadre du programme d’échange européen Erasmus à l’université de Göteborg en Suède

2009-2012 | Licence : Biologie des organismes et des ecosystemes | Université de Bordeaux 1

Activités de recherches

Key words: Trees’ reproduction - Masting - Fitness - Gradient of selection - Climate change

Phenology is a sensitive biosphere indicator of climate change. Previous studies indicated that plant phenology has been advanced by 2–3 days in spring and delayed by 0.3–1.6 days in autumn per decade in the past 50 years, resulting in extension of the growing season (Vitasse et al. 2009, Menzel et al. 2006). Although changes in vegetative phenology have considerable consequences for ecosystem functioning (Keeling et al 1996), we lack information on the response of reproductive phenology in forest trees to climate change. Yet, reproduction is one of the most important traits in determining plant fitness. Because the flowering and fruiting phenology of plants is sensitive to environmental cues such as temperature and moisture (Piovesan and Adams, 2001; Richardson et al 2005), climate change is likely to alter patterns of reproductive phenology (Hedhly et al 2008). The understanding of the sensitivity of tree reproduction to temperature and its possible evolution with climate change is a key issue that could provide new insights into the adaptation of plants to environmental changes. We therefore need to characterize temperature sensitivity of reproductive phenology in natural forests in order to forecast change in reproductive success and species distribution under global warming.

The aim of this project is to investigate the relationship between reproductive capacity and temperature. Based on an altitudinal and latitudinal gradients, we will evaluate the sensitivity of reproduction to warming. Seed production of oak populations will be assessed along altitudinal gradients and in a common garden experiment. Seed quantity and quality for each population will be monitored in situ to evaluate the phenotypic plasticity and in common gardens to quantify the genetic differentiation between populations (local adaptation). The monitoring was set up last year and will be completed by a larger seed collection device in each population. We hypothesize that reproductive traits are more under environmental (i.e., plasticity) than genetic control, as shown for leaf phenology (Vitasse et al. 2010).