Restoration ecology

Ecological restoration assists damaged or destroyed ecosystems to recover. Restoration ecology is the science studying this recovery process

The research is focused on ecological and physical processes in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. Of particular interest are the interactions between different parts of the landscape, for example between land and water and between different parts of a water system. Important questions are (1) whether restoration projects reach their goals which often deal with the recreation of a lost stage, (2) to what extent restoration projects can maximize certain ecosystem components to increase the amount of a specific ecosystem service, (3) how restoration projects can be designed with respect to future climate changes, and (4) how various human actors affect different parts of a restoration project. The research is carried out in collaboration with researchers at several Swedish and foreign universities and comprises, besides ecology, also disciplines such as political science and environmental history.

Research projects

The importance of seedbanks in river restorationEffects of climate change and restoration on streamside vegetation in boreal forest landscapesRESTORE: Ecosystem restoration in policy and practice: restore, develop, adaptOptimization of flow in managed riversBioRest: Local- and landscape-scale effects on biodiversity after stream restorationA framework for predicting success of stream restoration

Selected publications

Bell, D., J. Hjältén, C. Nilsson, D. Jørgensen & T. Johansson. 2015. Forest restoration to attract a putative umbrella species, the white-backed woodpecker, benefited saproxylic beetles. Ecosphere 6(12):278. http://dx.doi.org/10.1890/ES14-00551.1

Dietrich, A. L., C. Nilsson & R. Jansson. 2015. Restoration effects on germination and survival of plants in the riparian zone: a phytometer study. Plant Ecology 216:465-477.

Dietrich, A. L., C. Nilsson & R. Jansson. 2016. A phytometer study evaluating the effects of stream restoration on riparian vegetation. Ecohydrology 9:646-658.

Hasselquist, E.M., N. J. Hasselquist, J. D. Sparks & C. Nilsson. 2017. Recovery of nitrogen cycling in riparian zones after stream restoration using δ15N along a 25-year chronosequence in northern Sweden. Plant and Soil 410:423-436.

Hasselquist, E.M., C. Nilsson, J. Hjältén, D. Jørgensen, L. Lind & L. E. Polvi. 2015. Time for recovery of riparian plants in restored northern Swedish streams: a chronosequence study. Ecological Applications 25:1373-1389.

Hjältén, J., C. Nilsson, D. Jørgensen & D. Bell. 2016. Forest‒stream links, anthropogenic stressors, and climate change: implications for restoration planning. BioScience 66:646-654,

Nilsson, C., A. Aradottir, D. Hagen, G. Halldórsson, K. Høegh, R. Mitchell, K. Raulund-Rasmussen, K. Svavarsdóttir, A. Tolvanen & S.D. Wilson. 2016. Evaluating the process of ecological restoration. Ecology and Society 21(1):41. http://dx.doi.org/10.5751/ES-08289-210141

Nilsson, C., L. E. Polvi, J. Gardeström, E. M. Hasselquist, L. Lind & J. M. Sarneel. 2015. Riparian and in-stream restoration of boreal streams and rivers: success or failure? Ecohydrology 8:753-764.

Nilsson, C., J.M. Sarneel, D. Palm, J. Gardeström, F. Pilotto, L.E. Polvi, L. Lind, D. Holmqvist & H. Lundqvist. 2017. How do biota respond to additional physical restoration of restored streams? Ecosystems 20:144-162.


Page Editor: Elisabet Carlborg

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