Dr. Joe A. LaManna

Dr. Joe LaManna
Dr. Joe A. LaMannaMarquette University

Wehr Life Sciences, 409

MilwaukeeWI53201United States of America
(414) 288-1475LaManna Lab Website

Assistant Professor

Community and population ecology


B.S., 2003, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI

Ph.D., 2015, University of Montana, Missoula, MT

Post-doctoral Fellow, 2015-2018, Washington University in St. Louis, MO

Research Interests

My research explores the potential importance of biotic interactions to environment-diversity relationships and ecosystem function. The importance of biotic interactions to these processes has been a longstanding hypothesis in ecology. However, substantial uncertainty remains regarding the role of biotic interactions in determining population and community responses to environmental change. To address these critical knowledge gaps, my research program that seeks to understand: (1) the importance of biotic interactions to population/community responses to environmental change; and (2) how ecological disturbances and biotic interactions combine to induce feedbacks and tipping points that determine ecosystem function and resilience. I also have active interdisciplinary collaborations with social, political, and economic scientists to uncover how interactions among social and environmental components drive socio-ecological resilience.

My research explores the roles of species interactions in shaping community assembly, population dynamics, ecosystem function, and biodiversity in forest ecosystems. I am interested in interactions across trophic levels as well as the ecological and evolutionary roles of natural enemies like fungal pathogens and nest predators as well as mutualists like mycorrhizae. I am also interested in how local species interactions scale up to influence regional or biogeographic processes. I address critical gaps in knowledge with a combination of field-based experiments, large-scale observational studies, and a wide range of quantitative approaches including multivariate statistics, null modeling, and simulation models of population and community dynamics. I have worked with a variety of forest tree and avian communities in Oregon, Wisconsin, Montana, California, and Missouri. I have also led national and international collaborations using extensive datasets from the MAPS (Monitoring Avian Productivity and Survival) and the Smithsonian Forest Global Earth Observatory (ForestGEO) networks.

My research program addresses these questions using a wide range of empirical (e.g. large-scale observational studies, field & greenhouse experiments) and quantitative approaches (e.g. spatially- and temporally-explicit analyses of large datasets, simulation models of population/community dynamics).

Selected Publications

LaManna, J. A., F. A. Jones, D. M. Bell, R. J. Pabst, & D. C. Shaw. 2022. Tree species diversity increases with conspecific negative density dependence across an elevation gradient. Ecology Letters 25:1237–1249.

LaManna, J. A., L. A. Burkle, R. T. Belote, & J. A. Myers. 2020. Biotic and abiotic drivers of plant-pollinator community assembly across wildfire gradients. Journal of Ecology 109:1000-1013.

LaManna, J. A., et al. 2017. Plant diversity increases with the strength of negative density dependence at the global scale. Science 356:1389–1392.

T. L. George*, R. Harrigan*, J. A. LaManna*, J. F. Saracco, D. F. DeSante, & T. B. Smith. 2015. Persistent impacts of West Nile Virus on North American bird populations. Proceedings of the National Academy of Science 112:14290–14294. *Authors contributed equally to this work


Cole Doolittle (Ph.D. student)
Madison Sutton (Ph.D. student)

Dr. LaManna is currently accepting new Ph.D. students into his lab

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Department of Biological Sciences

Wehr Life Sciences, 109
1428 W. Clybourn St.
Milwaukee, WI 53233

(414) 288-7355

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