Prof Michelle Greve

Associate Professor
Section: Ecology and Biodiversity
Office:Plant Sciences Complex  4-49
Tel:  +27 (0)12 420 2487
Email: michelle.greve[AT]

My broad research interest is understanding what drives the diversity and distribution of species, at both large and local spatial scales. More recently I have also started delving into using functional trait approaches to understand the distribution and diversity of species. I am particularly interested in ecological patterns and processes in African savannas and grasslands, and in the invasion ecology of the sub-Antarctic islands. 


Selected publications:

  • Greve, M., Mathakutha, R., Steyn, C., Chown, S.L. (2017) Terrestrial invasions on sub-Antarctic Marion and Prince Edward Islands. Bothalia - African Biodiversity & Conservation, 47, a2143.
  • Steyn, C., Greve, M., Robertson, M.P., Kalwij, J.M., le Roux, P.C. (2017) Alien plant species that invade high elevations are generalists: support for the directional ecological filtering hypothesis. Journal of Vegetation Science, 28, 337-346.
  • Greve, M., Lykke, A.M., Fagg, C.W., Gereau, R.E., Lewis, G.P., Marchant, R., Marshall, A.R., Ndayishimiye, J., Bogaert, J., Svenning, J.C. (2016) Realising the potential of herbarium records for conservation biology. South African Journal of Botany, 105, 317-323.
  • Gourevitch, J.D., Hawthorne, P.L., Keeler, B.L., Beatty, C.R., Greve, M., Verdone, M.A. (2016) Optimizing investments in national-scale forest landscape restoration in Uganda to maximize multiple benefits. Environmental Research Letters, 11, 114027.
  • Greve, M., Reyers, B., Mette Lykke, A., Svenning, J.-C. (2013) Spatial optimization of carbon-stocking projects across Africa integrating stocking potential with co-benefits and feasibility. Nature Communications, 4, 2975.
  • Greve, M., Lykke, A.M., Fagg, C.W., Bogaert, J., Friis, I., Marchant, R., Marshall, A.R., Ndayishimiye, J., Sandel, B.S., Sandom, C., Schmidt, M., Timberlake, J.R., Wieringa, J.J., Zizka, G., Svenning, J.-C. (2012) Continental-scale variability in browser diversity is a major driver of diversity patterns in acacias across Africa. Journal of Ecology, 100, 1093–1104.

For a full list of publications see my Google Scholar profile.


Post-doctoral fellow:

  • Dr. Monique Botha. Understanding bush encroachment from a functional trait perspective

PhD students:

  • Samantha Jamison. Forest encroachment into a grassland: assessing succession dynamics and their impacts on associated bird networks

MSc students:

  • Rabia Mathakutha. Using plant functional traits to predict plant invasion potential on a Sub-Antarctic island
  • Zanele Ndhlazi. Germination and seedling establishment of indigenous legume species: assessing the potential for mine rehabilitation
  • Serole Sehona. The population structure and spread of invasive Salix babylonica in South Africa
  • Christien Steyn. Assessing the risk of plant invasions to the Southern Ocean Islands
  • Mthokozisi Twala. Assessing the impacts of the sub-Antarctic invader Sagina procumbens
  • Michael Voysey. The consequence for grazing lawn flora of different forms of herbivory: comparing the influence of wildlife and livestock herbivore assemblages

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