I am interested in using numerical and analytical tools to understand complex systems in ecology, in particular relating to their spatial structure and interactions between species and the environment.
In this project, working with Riccardo Bommarco and Stefano Manzoni, I am looking at how food webs in ecosystems are affected by different nutrient subsidies. Using both simple and more complex modeling approaches, I aim to understand how the subsidies trickle up and down the food web, potentially leading to a shift in the system's behavior, and how it relates to various functions of this system, such as the biomass productivity of the primary producers.
After studying Physics for my Bachelors and Masters, I moved to the Institutes for Desert Research (BGU), where I did my PhD, studying regime shifts and specifically desertification in dryland ecosystems. For my second postdoc I joined the CNRS station in Moulis, France, where my research focused on ecosystem stability, in particular focusing on the how spatial structure of the ecosystem and of disturbances affects its response to these disturbances, and thus its stability properties.
Y. R. Zelnik, J-F. Arnoldi, M. Loreau, “The three regimes of spatial recovery”, Ecology, 100:2 (2019).
Y. R. Zelnik, J-F. Arnoldi, M. Loreau, “The impact of spatial and temporal dimensions of disturbances on ecosystem stability”, Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution, 6:224 (2018).
Y. R. Zelnik, E. Meron, “Regime shifts by front dynamics”, Ecological Indicators, 94: 544-552 (2018).
Y. R. Zelnik, H. Uecker, U. Feudel, E. Meron,”Desertification by front propagation?“, Journal of Theoretical Biology, 418: 27-35 (2017).
Y. R. Zelnik, E. Meron, G. Bel, “Gradual Regime Shifts in Fairy Circles”, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 112.40:12327-12331 (2015).