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Jean-Philippe Lessard, PhD

Associate Professor, Biology

Concordia University Research Chair (2017-2022)

Jean-Philippe Lessard, PhD
Office: L-SP 437-09 
Richard J. Renaud Science Complex,
7141 Sherbrooke W.
Phone: (514) 848-2424 ext. 5184
Website(s): Visit our lab website


PhD (University of Tennessee)

Research interests

Our lab works toward elucidating the ecological and evolutionary drivers of biological diversity on Earth. We borrow concepts and tools from community ecology and biogeography to try and gain a mechanistic understanding of the emergence, distribution and maintenance of diversity. To accomplish this, we conduct observational and experimental field studies and compile comprehensive databases on the distributions, ecological characteristics and evolutionary history of species.

Teaching activities


BIOL 353  Communities and Ecosystems
BIOL 451  Field Ecology

Selected publications

Lessard JP. (2019) Ant community response to disturbance: a global synthesis. Journal of Animal Ecology 88:346-349 

Beaudrot L., Acevedo M., Lessard J.P., Zvoleff A., Jansen P.A., Fletcher C., Larney E., O’Brien T., Rovero F., Sheil D., Andelman S. and J. Ahumada. (2019) ​Local temperature and ecological similarity drive distributional dynamics of tropical mammals worldwide. Global Ecology and Biogeography

Arrowsmith J*, Nagaraju NK, Larivée M, Turgeon J, Lessard JP. (2018) Environmental filtering along an acidity gradient shapes the structure of odonate assemblages. Ecosphere 9(12): e02473 

Lessard JP, Weinstein B, Borregaard MK, Marske KA, Rojas, D, McGuire JA, Parra JL, Rahbek C, Graham CH. (2016) Process-based species pools reveal the hidden signature of biotic interactions amid the influence of temperature filtering. The American Naturalist 187: 75-88

Jønsson KA, Lessard JP, Ricklefs RR. (2015) The evolution of morphological diversity in continental assemblages of passerine birds. Evolution 69: 879-889

Blonder B, Nogués-Bravo D, Borregaard MK, Donoghue J, Jørgensen PM, Kraft NJB, Lessard JP, Morueta-Holme N, Sandel B, Svenning JC, Violle C, Rahbek C, Enquist BJ. (2015) Linking environmental filtering and disequilibrium to biogeography with a community climate framework. Ecology 96:972-985

Fowler D, Lessard JP, Sanders NJ. (2014) Niche filtering rather than partitioning shapes the structure of temperate forest ant communities. Journal of Animal Ecology 83:943-952

Holt B, Lessard JP, Borregaard MK, Fritz SA, Araújo MB, Dimitrov DD, Fabre PH, Graham CH, Graves GR, Jønsson KA, Nogués-Bravo D, Wang Z, Whittaker RJ, Fjeldså J, Rahbek C. (2013) An update of Wallace's zoogeographic regions of the world. Science 339:74-78

Lessard JP, Belmaker J, Myers JA, Chase JM, Rahbek C. (2012) Inferring local ecological processes amid species pool influences. 
Trends in Ecology and Evolution 27: 600-607

Lessard JP, Borregard MK, Fordyce JA, Rahbek C, Weiser MD, Dunn RR, Sanders NJ. (2012) Strong influence of regional species pools on continent-wide structuring of local communities.
Proceedings of the Royal Society B 279: 266-274

Lessard JP, Sackett TE, Reynolds WN, Fowler DA§, Sanders NJ. (2011) Determinants of the detrital arthropod community structure: the effects of temperature, resources, and environmental gradients.
Oikos 120: 333-343

Lessard JP, Fordyce JM, Gotelli NJ, Sanders NJ. (2009) Invasive ants alter the phylogenetic structure of native communities.

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