Daniel Falster
Dr Daniel Falster
Role: 
ARC Future Fellow
Field of Research: 
Evolution, ecology, mathematical and computational biology
Contact details:
Phone: 
+61 2 9385 8431
Office: 
Room 5109, Level 5 West
Biological Sciences South (E26)

UNSW, Kensington 2052

For a full list see danielfalster.com. You can also find me on TwitterOrcid (0002-9814-092X)Google scholarScopusLinkedInImpact story and Github: dfalster & traitecoevo

Research

How do competitive interactions shape the ecology, population dynamics, and traits of species and communities? I use a combination of maths, computer models, and large data sets to test fundamental ideas about the processes shaping biological communities. I am passionate about science, open data, reproducible research, and teaching biologists to code. My current focus is on predicting the distribution of plant types found across the Australian continent from first principles, using evolutionary models.

 

Select Talks
  • Reproducible research in R with remake [2016, conference talk]. Sydney Bioinformatics Research Symposiumslides
  • The challenge of combining 176 x #otherpeoplesdata to create the Biomass And Allometry Database (BAAD) [2016, conference talk]. UseR (Stanford, USA)slides video
  • The plant package for R [2016, webinar]. Webinar ‘Demography beyond the population’slides video
  • The challenge of combining 176 x #otherpeoplesdata to create the Biomass And Allometry Database (BAAD) [2015, conference talk]. Ecological Society of Australia (Adelaide)slides
  • Towards a theory of plant trait diversity [2015, invited plenary]. Ecological Society of Australia (Adelaide)slides
  • Trait-based approaches in plant ecology: towards a theory of form and function [2013, invited plenary]. Trait-based approaches to Ocean Life (Copenhagen)slides
  • Growth trajectories: a new way of understanding the influence of traits on plant growth [2013, conference talk]. Intecol (London)slides

 

Select Publications

Multitrait successional forest dynamics enable diverse competitive coexistence
     Falster DS, Brännström Å, Westoby M, Dieckmann U (2017) Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA 114: E2719-E2728.
     doi: 10.1073/pnas.1610206114  preprint: 10.1101/014605  code: github  Times cited: 3 

Trajectories: how functional traits influence plant growth and shade tolerance across the life-cycle
     Falster DS, Duursma RA, FitzJohn RG (2016) bioRxiv: 083451.
     doi: 10.1101/083451  code: github 

Leaf mass per area, not total leaf area, drives differences in above-ground biomass distribution among woody plant functional types
     Duursma RA, Falster DS (2016) New Phytologist 212: 368–376.
     doi: 10.1111/nph.14033  preprint: 10.1101/025361  code: github  Times cited: 1 

On the link between functional traits and growth rate: meta-analysis shows effects change with plant size, as predicted
     Gibert A, Gray EF, Westoby M, Wright IJ, Falster DS (2016) Journal of Ecology 104: 1488-1503.
     doi: 10.1111/1365-2745.12594  code: github  Times cited: 3 

plant: A package for modelling forest trait ecology & evolution
     Falster DS, FitzJohn RG, Brännström Å, Dieckmann U, Westoby M (2016) Methods in Ecology and Evolution 7: 136-146.
     doi: 10.1111/2041-210X.12525  R package: github.com/traitecoevo/plant  code: github  Times cited: 3 

Plant functional traits have globally consistent effects on competition
     Kunstler G, Falster D, Coomes DA, Hui F, Kooyman RM, Laughlin DC + 30 more (2016) Nature 529: 204–207.
     doi: 10.1038/nature16476  Times cited: 61 

The Coral Trait Database: a curated database of trait information for coral species from the global oceans
     Madin JS, Andreasen MH, Bridge T, CairnsX S, Connolly SR, Darling E + 19 more (2016) Scientific Data: 160017.
     doi: 10.1038/sdata.2016.17 

A trait-based approach to advance coral reef science
     Madin JS, Hoogenboom MO, Connolly SR, Darling ES, Falster DS, Huang D + 5 more (2016) Trends in Ecology & Evolution: published online.
     doi: 10.1016/j.tree.2016.02.012 

BAAD: a Biomass And Allometry Database for woody plants
     Falster DS, Duursma RA, Ishihara MI, Barneche DR, FitzJohn RG, Vårhammar A + 90 more (2015) Ecology 96: 1445.
     doi: 10.1890/14-1889.1  data: Ecological Archives E096-128-D1  R package: baad.data  code: github.com/dfalster/baad  Times cited: 22 

Quantifying and understanding reproductive allocation schedules in plants
     Wenk E, Falster D (2015) Ecology and Evolution 5: 5521-5538.
     doi: 10.1002/ece3.1802  preprint: 10.1101/008508  Times cited: 11 

Functional distinctiveness of major plant lineages
     Cornwell WK, Westoby M, Falster DS, FitzJohn R, O’Meara B, Pennell MW + 20 more (2014) Journal of Ecology 102: 345-356.
     doi: 10.1111/1365-2745.12208  R package: ksi  Times cited: 45 

smatr 3 – an R package for estimation and inference about allometric lines
     Warton DI, Duursma RA, Falster DS, Taskinen S (2012) Methods in Ecology and Evolution 3: 257-259.
     doi: 10.1111/j.2041-210X.2011.00153.x  R package: smatr  Times cited: 323 

An evolutionary attractor model for sapwood cross section in relation to leaf area
     Westoby M, Cornwell WK, Falster DS (2012) Journal of Theoretical Biology 303: 98-109.
     doi: 10.1016/j.jtbi.2012.03.008  code: 10.6084/m9.figshare.1005160  Times cited: 6 

Influence of four major plant traits on average height, leaf-area cover, net primary productivity, and biomass density in single-species forests: a theoretical investigation
     Falster DS, Brännström Å, Dieckmann U, Westoby M (2011) Journal of Ecology 99: 148-164.
     doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2745.2010.01735.x  Times cited: 74 

A general model for the scaling of offspring size and adult size
     Falster DS, Moles AT, Westoby M (2008) American Naturalist 172: 299-317.
     doi: 10.1086/589889  code: 10.6084/m9.figshare.1094315  Times cited: 38 

Bivariate line-fitting methods for allometry
     Warton DI, Wright IJ, Falster DS, Westoby M (2006) Biological Reviews 81: 259-291.
     doi: 10.1017/S1464793106007007  code: smatr v2  Times cited: 1324 

Cross-species patterns in the coordination between leaf and stem traits, and their implications for plant hydraulics
     Wright IJ, Falster DS, Pickup M, Westoby M (2006) Physiologia Plantarum 127: 445-456.
     link: dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1399-3054.2006.00699.x  Times cited: 82

Plant height and evolutionary games
     Falster DS, Westoby M (2003) Trends in Ecology and Evolution 18: 337-343.
     doi: 10.1016/S0169-5347(03)00061-2  Times cited: 340 

Plant ecological strategies: some leading dimensions of variation between species
     Westoby M, Falster DS, Moles AT, Vesk P, Wright IJ (2002) Annual Review of Ecology and Systematics 33: 125-159.
     doi: 10.1146/annurev.ecolsys.33.010802.150452  Times cited: 1610 

 

Datasets

Data from: On the link between functional traits and growth rate: meta-analysis shows effects change with plant size, as predicted
     Gibert A, Gray EF, Westoby M, Wright IJ, Falster DS (2016) Dryad Digital Repository.
     doi: 10.5061/dryad.701q8   

Data from: The Coral Trait Database: a curated database of trait information for coral species from the global oceans
     Madin JS, Andreasen MH, Bridge T, CairnsX S, Connolly SR, Darling E + 19 more (2016) Figshare.
     doi: 10.6084/m9.figshare.2067414   

Data from: BAAD: a Biomass And Allometry Database for woody plants
     Falster DS, Duursma RA, Ishihara MI, Barneche DR, FitzJohn RG, Vårhammar A + 90 more (2015) Ecological Archives: E096-128-D1.
     link: www.esapubs.org/archive/ecol/E096/128/  R package: baad.data  code: github.com/dfalster/baad  

Australian individual tree biomass library, version 1.0
     Paul KI, Adams M, Applegate G, Attiwill P, Baker T, Barton C + 42 more (2015) AEKOS.
     doi: 10.4227/05/57354015127B8    abstract:

Individual tree and shrub above-ground biomass (dry weight), stem diameter, height, and associated auxiliary information about the sites from which the trees or shrubs were sampled.

Data from: Angiosperm wood structure: Global patterns in vessel anatomy and their relation to wood density and potential conductivity
     Zanne AE, Westoby M, Falster DS, Ackerly DD, Loarie SR, Arnold SE + 1 more (2010) Dryad Digital Repository.
     doi: 10.5061/dryad.1138   

Code and data from: A general model for the scaling of offspring size and adult size
     Falster DS, Moles AT, Westoby M (2008) Figshare.
     doi: 10.6084/m9.figshare.1094315   

Data from: Alternative height strategies among 45 dicot rain forest species from tropical Queensland, Australia
     Falster DS (2005) Github.
     link: github.com/dfalster/Falster_2005_JEcol_data  

Data from: Tradeoffs between height growth rate, stem persistence and maximum height among plant species in a post-fire succession
     Falster DS (2005) Github.
     link: github.com/dfalster/Falster_2005_Oikos_data  

Data from: Small-seeded plants produce more seeds per square metre of canopy per year, but not per individual per lifetime
     Moles AT, Falster DS, Leishman M, Westoby M (2004) Journal of Ecology Supplementary material.
     link: www.blackwellpublishing.com/products/journals/suppmat/JEC/JEC880/JEC880sm.htm  

Data from: Leaf size and angle vary widely across species: what consequences for light interception?
     Falster DS, Westoby M (2003) New Phytologist: 158.
     doi: 10.1046/j.1469-8137.2003.00765.x   

 

Software