Nathan Kraft

(301) 825-3593
410J Botany
lab website

Research Areas

Ecology, Physiological Ecology, Plant Biology, Tropical Biology

Research Interests

We study the ecological and evolutionary forces that structure communities, particularly plant systems. Projects in the lab integrate aspects of community ecology, biogeography, ecophysiology, and phylogenetics. Recent projects have centered on the forests of lowland Amazonia and annual plant communities in California. In addition to a focus on species coexistence, research in the lab also addresses plant responses to climate change, the distribution of diversity at broad spatial scales, and the assembly of regional biotas.

Selected Publications

Mary Van Dyke, Jonathan Levine, Nathan Kraft, 2022. Small rainfall changes drive substantial changes in plant coexistence. Nature, 611:507-511.

Andrew Kleinhesselink, Nathan Kraft, Stephen Pacala, Jonathan Levine, 2022. Detecting and interpreting higher order interactions in ecological communities. Ecology Letters, 25:1604 –1617.

Gaurav Kandlikar, Andrew Kleinhesselink, Nathan Kraft, 2022. Functional traits predict species responses to environmental variation in a California grassland annual plant community. Journal of Ecology, 110:833-844.

Gaurav Kandlikar, Xinyi Yan, Jonathan Levine, Nathan Kraft, 2021. Soil microbes generate stronger fitness differences than stabilization among California annual plants. American Naturalist, 197:E30-E39.

Ian McFadden, Brody Sandel, Constantinos Tsirogiannis, Naia Morueta-Holme, Jens-Christian Svenning, Brian Enquist, Nathan Kraft, 2019. Temperature shapes opposing latitudinal gradients of plant taxonomic and phylogenetic β diversity. Ecology Letters 22:1126-1135.

Ian McFadden, Megan Bartlett, Thorsten Weigand, Benjamin Turner, Lawren Sack, Renato Valencia, Nathan Kraft, 2019. Disentangling the functional trait correlates of spatial aggregation in tropical forest trees. Ecology, 100:e02591.

Claire Fortunel, Jesse Lasky, Maria Uriarte, Renato Valencia, Joseph Wright, Nancy Garwood, Nathan Kraft, "Topography and neighborhood crowding can interact to shape species growth and distribution in a diverse Amazonian forest", Ecology, 99 : 2272-2283 (2018) .

William Petry, Gaurav Kandlikar, Nathan Kraft, Oscar Godoy, and Jonathan Levine, "A competition-defence trade-off both promotes and weakens coexistence in an annual plant community", Journal of Ecology, 106 : 1806-1818 (2018) .

Jeanne Osnas, Masatoshi Katabuchi, Kaoru Kitajima, S. Joseph Wright, Peter Reich, Sunshine Van Bael, Nathan Kraft, Mirna J. Samaniego, Stephen Pacala, and Jeremy Lichstein, "Divergent drivers of leaf trait variation within species, among species, and among functional groups", Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, 115 : 5480-5485 (2018) .

Irena Simova, Cyrille Violle, Jens‐Christian Svenning, Jens Kattge, Kristine Engemann, Brody Sande, Robert Peet, Susan Wiser, Benjamin Blonder, Brian McGill, Brad Boyle, Naia Morueta‐Holme, Nathan Kraft, Peter van Bodegom, Alvaro Gutierrez, Michael Bahn, Wim Ozinga, Anna Toszogyova, Brian Enquist, "Spatial patterns and climate relationships of major plant traits in the New World differ between woody and herbaceous species", Journal of Biogeography, 45 : 895-916 (2018) .

Brian Maitner, Brad Boyle, Nathan Casler, Rick Condit, John Donoghue II, Sandra M. Duran, Daniel Guaderrama, Cody E. Hinchliff, Peter M. Jorgensen, Nathan Kraft, Brian McGill, Cory Merow, Naia Morueta-Holme, Robert K. Peet, Brody Sandel, Mark Schildhauer, Stephen A. Smith, Jens-Christian Svenning, Barbara Thiers, Cyrille Violle, Susan Wiser, Brian J. Enquist, "The bien r package: A tool to access the Botanical Information and Ecology Network (BIEN) database", Methods in Ecology and Evolution, 9 : 891-893 (2018) .

Ethan E Butler, Abhirup Datta, Habacuc Flores-Moreno, Ming Chen, Kirk R Wythers, Farideh Fazayeli, Arindam Banerjee, Owen K Atkin, Jens Kattge, Bernard Amiaud, Benjamin Blonder, Gerhard Boenisch, Ben Bond-Lamberty, Kerry A Brown, Chaeho Byun, Giandiego Campetella, Bruno EL Cerabolini, Johannes HC Cornelissen, Joseph M Craine, Dylan Craven, Franciska T de Vries, Sandra D?az, Tomas F Domingues, Estelle Forey, Andr?s Gonz?lez-Melo, Nicolas Gross, Wenxuan Han, Wesley N Hattingh, Thomas Hickler, Steven Jansen, Koen Kramer, Nathan Kraft, Hiroko Kurokawa, Daniel C Laughlin, Patrick Meir, Vanessa Minden, Ulo Niinemets, Yusuke Onoda, Josep Penuelas, Quentin Read, Lawren Sack, Brandon Schamp, Nadejda A Soudzilovskaia, Marko J Spasojevic, Enio Sosinski, Peter E Thornton, Fernando Valladares, Peter M van Bodegom, Mathew Williams, Christian Wirth, Peter B Reich, "Mapping local and global variability in plant trait distributions", Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, 114 : E10937- (2017) .

Cyrille Violle, Wilfried Thuiller, Nicolas Mouquet, Francois Munoz, Nathan Kraft, Marc Cadotte, Stuart Livingstone, Matthias Grenie, David Mouillot, "A Common Toolbox to Understand, Monitor or Manage Rarity? A Response to Carmona et al", Trends in Ecology and Evolution, 32 : 891-893 (2017) .

Serguei Saavedra, Rudolf Rohr, Jordi Bascompte, Oscar Godoy, Nathan Kraft, Jonathan Levine, "A structural approach for understanding multi species coexistence", Ecological Monographs, 32 : 891-893 (2017) .

Oscar Godoy, Daniel Stouffer, Nathan Kraft, Jonathan Levine, "Intransitivity is infrequent and fails to promote annual plant coexistence without pairwise niche differences", Ecology, 98 : 1193-1200 (2017) .

Thorsten Wiegand, Maria Uriarte, Nathan Kraft, Guochun Shen, Xugao Wang, Fangliane He, "Spatially explicit metrics of species, functional and phylogenetic diversity: insights into plant community assembly processes", Annual Review of Ecology, Evolution, and Systematics, 48 : 329-351 (2017) .

Claire Fortunel, Renato Valencia, S Joseph Wright, Nancy Garwood, Nathan Kraft, 2016. Functional trait differences influence neighbourhood interactions in a hyperdiverse Amazonian forest. Ecology Letters, 19:1062-1070.

Nathan Kraft, Oscar Godoy, Jonathan Levine, 2015. Functional traits and the multidimensional nature of species coexistence. Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, 112:797-802.

Nathan Kraft, Peter Adler, Oscar Godoy, Emily James, Steve Fuller, Jonathan Levine, 2015. Community assembly, coexistence, and the environmental filtering metaphor. Functional Ecology, 29:592-599.