Plant Functional Ecology

Research Interests
Research Interests

We study the causes and consequences of trait variation and integration across biological scales, from within individuals to among communities.

Broadly, our research aims to uncover the processes governing the diversity of plant form and function. 

We are interested in questions at the intersection of plant physiology, scaling, ecology and evolution. As empiricists, we use observational and experimental studies both the field and in the lab to uncover general principles governing patterns of phenotypic diversity.

Using the trait-based framework, one of our pet interests are to tests its implicit and explicit assumptions, and to develop this contextual framework. Dr. Messier’s work has highlighted the importance of individual variation, phenotypic complexity and the scale dependence of patterns and processes in trait-based ecology.

Bio ~

Dr. Messier

I am an Assistant Professor in the department of Biology at the University of Waterloo

I conducted postdoctoral research at the University of Sherbrooke with Dr. Vellend and at the CEFE (CNRS) with Dr. Violle, where I examine whether traits can predict species response to warming. I completed my PhD in December 2015 at the University of Arizona with Drs Enquist, McGill and Lechowicz, where I explored the limits of a trait-based approach to ecology, specifically with respect phenotypic complexity and scaling. I obtained my MSc from McGill University in 2009, where I examined variation in leaf traits across biological scales in tropical rainforests.

For more about my research, visit my Research page to learn about my past and current projects or my Publications page to see my papers. You can also find me on: