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Dr Fernanda de Vasconcellos Barros

Dr Fernanda de Vasconcellos Barros

Proleptic Lecturer (Research & Education)

 +44 07402 416616

 Laver Building 801


Laver Building, University of Exeter, North Park Road, Exeter, EX4 4QE, UK


I'm a biologist with background in plant functional ecology. My main interest is in understanding how plants function and how this links to plant distribution patterns, vegetation response to climate change and restoration planning. Most of my work involves empirical measurements and have been developed in Latin America, across tropical rainforests, dry forests, and savannahs, where I`m working now.   

My current research involves the diversity of hydraulic and carbon assimilation strategies across savannah’s species; restoration experiments; ecosystem services (i.e., biodiversity, water security and carbon storage); and regenerative silvopastoral systems (i.e., using native trees).

Broad research specialisms: 

Plant Functional Ecology, Tropical ecosystems, Plant hydrology and gas exchanges

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Journal articles

Mazzochini GG, Lira-Martins D, de Barros FV, Oliveira ACC, Xavier RO, Furtado MN, Verona LS, Viani RAG, Rowland L, Oliveira RS, et al (2024). Effects of grass functional diversity on invasion success by exotic grasses in Cerrado grasslands. Journal of Applied Ecology, 61(2), 271-280. Abstract.
Mazzochini GG, Rowland L, Lira‐Martins D, Barros FDV, Flores BM, Hirota M, Pennington RT, Oliveira RS (2024). Spectral asynchrony as a measure of ecosystem response diversity. Global Change Biology, 30(2). Abstract.
Tavares JV, Oliveira RS, Mencuccini M, Signori-Müller C, Pereira L, Diniz FC, Gilpin M, Marca Zevallos MJ, Salas Yupayccana CA, Acosta M, et al (2023). Basin-wide variation in tree hydraulic safety margins predicts the carbon balance of Amazon forests. Nature, 617(7959), 111-117. Abstract.
Barros FDV, Lewis K, Robertson AD, Pennington RT, Hill TC, Matthews C, Lira-Martins D, Mazzochini GG, Oliveira RS, Rowland L, et al (2023). Cost-effective restoration for carbon sequestration across Brazil's biomes. Science of the Total Environment, 876, 162600-162600.
Mattos CRC, Mazzochini GG, Rius BF, Penha D, Giacomin LL, Flores BM, Silva MC, Xavier RO, Nehemy MF, Petroni AR, et al (2023). Rainfall and topographic position determine tree embolism resistance in Amazônia and Cerrado sites. Environmental Research Letters, 18(11), 114009-114009. Abstract.
Ordóñez-Parra CA, Dayrell RLC, Negreiros D, Andrade ACS, Andrade LG, Antonini Y, Barreto LC, Barros FDV, Carvalho VDC, Corredor BAD, et al (2023). Rock n' Seeds: a database of seed functional traits and germination experiments from Brazilian rock outcrop vegetation. Ecology, 104(1). Abstract.
Soares Jancoski H, Schwantes Marimon B, C. Scalon M, de V. Barros F, Marimon‐Junior BH, Carvalho E, S. Oliveira R, Oliveras Menor I (2022). Distinct leaf water potential regulation of tree species and vegetation types across the Cerrado–Amazonia transition. Biotropica, 54(2), 431-443. Abstract.
Lewis K, Barros FDV, Moonlight PW, Hill TC, Oliveira RS, Schmidt IB, Sampaio AB, Pennington RT, Rowland L (2022). Identifying hotspots for ecosystem restoration across heterogeneous tropical savannah-dominated regions. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 378(1867). Abstract.
Lewis K, de V Barros F, Cure MB, Davies CA, Furtado MN, Hill TC, Hirota M, Martins DL, Mazzochini GG, Mitchard ETA, et al (2022). Mapping native and non-native vegetation in the Brazilian Cerrado using freely available satellite products. Sci Rep, 12(1). Abstract.  Author URL.
Barros FDV, Bittencourt PL, Eller CB, Signori‐Müller C, Meireles LD, Oliveira RS (2022). Phytogeographical origin determines Tropical Montane Cloud Forest hydraulic trait composition. Functional Ecology, 36(3), 607-621. Abstract.
Giles AL, Rowland L, Bittencourt PRL, Bartholomew DC, Coughlin I, Costa PB, Domingues T, Miatto RC, Barros FV, Ferreira LV, et al (2022). Small understorey trees have greater capacity than canopy trees to adjust hydraulic traits following prolonged experimental drought in a tropical forest. Tree Physiol, 42(3), 537-556. Abstract.  Author URL.
Oliveira RS, Eller CB, Barros FDV, Hirota M, Brum M, Bittencourt P (2021). Linking plant hydraulics and the fast–slow continuum to understand resilience to drought in tropical ecosystems. New Phytologist, 230(3), 904-923. Abstract.
Signori-Müller C, Oliveira RS, Barros FDV, Tavares JV, Gilpin M, Diniz FC, Zevallos MJM, Yupayccana CAS, Acosta M, Bacca J, et al (2021). Non-structural carbohydrates mediate seasonal water stress across Amazon forests. Nat Commun, 12(1). Abstract.  Author URL.
Signori‐Müller C, Oliveira RS, Valentim Tavares J, Carvalho Diniz F, Gilpin M, de V. Barros F, Marca Zevallos MJ, Salas Yupayccana CA, Nina A, Brum M, et al (2021). Variation of non‐structural carbohydrates across the fast–slow continuum in Amazon Forest canopy trees. Functional Ecology, 36(2), 341-355. Abstract.
Bittencourt PRL, Oliveira RS, da Costa ACL, Giles AL, Coughlin I, Costa PB, Bartholomew DC, Ferreira LV, Vasconcelos SS, Barros FV, et al (2020). Amazonia trees have limited capacity to acclimate plant hydraulic properties in response to long‐term drought. Global Change Biology, 26(6), 3569-3584. Abstract.
Barros FDV, Bittencourt PRL, Brum M, Restrepo-Coupe N, Pereira L, Teodoro GS, Saleska SR, Borma LS, Christoffersen BO, Penha D, et al (2019). Hydraulic traits explain differential responses of Amazonian forests to the 2015 El Niño-induced drought. New Phytol, 223(3), 1253-1266. Abstract.  Author URL.
Brum M, Vadeboncoeur MA, Ivanov V, Asbjornsen H, Saleska S, Alves LF, Penha D, Dias JD, Aragão LEOC, Barros F, et al (2019). Hydrological niche segregation defines forest structure and drought tolerance strategies in a seasonal Amazon forest. Journal of Ecology, 107(1), 318-333. Abstract.
Bittencourt PRL, Barros FDV, Eller CB, Müller CS, Oliveira RS (2019). The fog regime in a tropical montane cloud forest in Brazil and its effects on water, light and microclimate. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, 265, 359-369. Abstract.
Aparecido LMT, Teodoro GS, Mosquera G, Brum M, Barros FDV, Pompeu PV, Rodas M, Lazo P, Müller CS, Mulligan M, et al (2018). Ecohydrological drivers of Neotropical vegetation in montane ecosystems. Ecohydrology, 11(3). Abstract.
Oliveira RS, Costa FRC, van Baalen E, de Jonge A, Bittencourt PR, Almanza Y, Barros FDV, Cordoba EC, Fagundes MV, Garcia S, et al (2018). Embolism resistance drives the distribution of Amazonian rainforest tree species along hydro‐topographic gradients. New Phytologist, 221(3), 1457-1465. Abstract.
van Emmerik T, Steele-Dunne S, Gentine P, Oliveira RS, Bittencourt P, Barros F, van de Giesen N (2018). Ideas and perspectives: Tree–atmosphere interaction responds to water-related stem variations. Biogeosciences, 15(21), 6439-6449. Abstract.
Eller CB, Rowland L, Oliveira RS, Bittencourt PRL, Barros FV, da Costa ACL, Meir P, Friend AD, Mencuccini M, Sitch S, et al (2018). Modelling tropical forest responses to drought and El Niño with a stomatal optimization model based on xylem hydraulics. Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci, 373(1760). Abstract.  Author URL.
Eller CB, de V Barros F, Bittencourt PRL, Rowland L, Mencuccini M, Oliveira RS (2018). Xylem hydraulic safety and construction costs determine tropical tree growth. Plant Cell Environ, 41(3), 548-562. Abstract.  Author URL.
GARCIA LC, BARROS FV, LEMOS-FILHO JP (2017). Environmental drivers on leaf phenology of ironstone outcrops species under seasonal climate. Anais da Academia Brasileira de Ciências, 89(1), 131-143.
van Emmerik T, Steele‐Dunne S, Paget A, Oliveira RS, Bittencourt PRL, Barros FDV, van de Giesen N (2017). Water stress detection in the Amazon using radar. Geophysical Research Letters, 44(13), 6841-6849. Abstract.
Pereira L, Bittencourt PRL, Oliveira RS, Junior MBM, Barros FV, Ribeiro RV, Mazzafera P (2016). Plant pneumatics: stem air flow is related to embolism – new perspectives on methods in plant hydraulics. New Phytologist, 211(1), 357-370. Abstract.
Oliveira RS, Christoffersen BO, de V. Barros F, Teodoro GS, Bittencourt P, Brum-Jr MM, Viani RAG (2014). Changing precipitation regimes and the water and carbon economies of trees. Theoretical and Experimental Plant Physiology, 26(1), 65-82.
Moreira ASFP, Queiroz ACL, Barros FDV, Goulart MF, Pires de Lemos-Filho J (2013). Do leaf traits in two Dalbergia species present differential plasticity in relation to light according to their habitat of origin?. Australian Journal of Botany, 61(8), 592-592. Abstract.
Barros FDV, Goulart MF, Sá Telles SB, Lovato MB, Valladares F, Lemos‐Filho JPD (2011). Phenotypic plasticity to light of two congeneric trees from contrasting habitats: Brazilian Atlantic Forest <i>versus</i> cerrado (savanna). Plant Biology, 14(1), 208-215. Abstract.
Goulart MF, Lovato MB, de Vasconcellos Barros F, Valladares F, Lemos-Filho JP (2011). Which Extent is Plasticity to Light Involved in the Ecotypic Differentiation of a Tree Species from Savanna and Forest?. Biotropica, 43(6), 695-703. Abstract.
Garcia LC, Barros FV, Lemos-Filho JP (2009). Fructification phenology as an important tool in the recovery of iron mining areas in Minas Gerais, Brazil. Brazilian Journal of Biology, 69(3), 887-893. Abstract.
Garcia LC, Barros FDV, Lemos Filho JP (2006). Comportamento germinativo de duas espécies de canga ferrífera: Baccharis retusa DC. (Asteraceae) e Tibouchina multiflora Cogn. (Melastomataceae). Acta Botanica Brasilica, 20(2), 443-448. Abstract.

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