My research interests are plant ecology, especially plant-animal interactions (seed predation, seed dispersal, pollination, herbivory), plant demography and life histories, and conservation biology.
Specific interests include:
- Mast seeding: the description of variable among-year flowering patterns (mast seeding) and inter-species synchrony in New Zealand, the evolutionary benefits of masting, modelling the resource dynamics within plants that create masting (see Masting research group pages)
- Bird-plant mutualisms: the importance and resilience of bird pollination and bird seed dispersal systems in the New Zealand flora; the regeneration, distribution and conservation of native bird- pollinated and bird-dispersed plants, especially mistletoes (see Mistletoe group pages)
- Effects of herbivory: use of biological control agents for control of thistles; impact of sap-sucking scale insects on photosynthesis of Nothofagus trees
- Mechanisms of plant competition: use of long term monitoring studies and modelling to measure the process of competition among plants
- Conservation biology: demography of rare plants, effects of weeds in reserves, use of bioindicators for habitat quality, impacts of mammalian herbivores.
- Chase KD., Kelly D., Liebhold AM. and Brockerhoff EG. (2023) The role of propagule pressure in experimental bark beetle invasions. Journal of Applied Ecology 60(2): 342-352. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/1365-2664.14326.
- Kelly D. (2023) Mast seeding: Study of oak mechanisms carries wider lessons. Current Biology 33(6): R231-R233. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cub.2023.02.043.
- Whitau K., Kelly D., Galloway TNH., Macfarlane AET., van Vianen JCCM., Rossignaud L. and Doherty KJ. (2023) Effects of altitude, seedfall and control operations on rat abundance in South Island Nothofagus forests 1998–2016. New Zealand Journal of Ecology 47(1) http://dx.doi.org/10.20417/nzjecol.47.3502.
- Harris HAL., Kelly D., Innes J. and Allen RB. (2022) Invasive species and thermal squeeze: distribution of two invasive predators and drivers of ship rat (Rattus rattus) invasion in mid-elevation Fuscospora forest. Biological Invasions 24(8): 2547-2559. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10530-022-02789-4.
- Rossignaud L., Kelly D., Spurr EB., Flaspohler DJ., Allen RB. and Brockerhoff EG. (2022) Trends in bird counts 1978–2020 in a New Zealand Nothofagus forest with variable control of mammalian predators. Avian Conservation and Ecology 17(2) http://dx.doi.org/10.5751/ACE-02176-170204.