University of Wisconsin–Madison

Zak Ratajczak

Photo of Zak Rajatczak Zak Ratajczak is an ecologist interested in the intersection of theoretical and applied ecology, especially in grassland, savanna, and woodland ecosystems. Most of his research focuses on the resistance and resilience to changes in disturbance and climatic variation. As a member of the ACES group, he is using process based models to look at how predicted changes in climate and fire regime shifts could alter subalpine forests of the Northern Rockies.

CV: Ratajczak_FullCV

Representative publications:

Ratajczak, Z., P. D’Odorico, S. L. Collins, B. Bestelmeyer, F. Isbell, and J. B. Nippert. In Press. The interactive effects of press/pulse intensity and duration on regime shifts at multiple scales. Ecological Monographs.

Ratajczak, Z., D’Odorico P. and Yu K. In Press. The enemy of my enemy: why coexisting with grasses might be an adaptive strategy for savanna trees. Ecosystems.

Seakell, D., and many others (including Z. Ratajczak). 2017. Conceptualizing and quantifying resilience in the global food system. Environmental Research Letters 12: 025010.

Klodd, A.E., Nippert J.B., Ratajczak Z., Haring H., and Phoenix G.K.  2016. Tight coupling of leaf area index to canopy nitrogen and phosphorus across heterogenous tallgrass prairie communities. Oecologia 182: 889-898.

Ratajczak, Z., D’Odorico P., Nippert J.B., Collins S.L., Brunsell N.A., and Ravi S. 2017. Changes in spatial variance during a grassland to shrubland state transition. Journal of Ecology 105: 750-760.

Ratajczak, Z., J. M. Briggs, D. G. Goodin, L. Luo, R. L. Mohler, J. B. Nippert, and B. Obermeyer. 2016. Assessing the potential for transitions from tallgrass prairie to woodlands: are we operating beyond critical fire thresholds?. Journal of Rangeland Ecology and Management 69: 280-287.

Ladwig, L. M., Z. Ratajczak, T. W. Ocheltree, K. Hafich, A. C. Churchill, S. J. K. Frey, C. B. Fuss, C. E. Kazanski, J. D. Muñoz, M. Petrie, A. B. Reinmann, and J. G. Smith. 2016. Beyond arctic and alpine: the influence of winter climate on temperate ecosystems. Ecology 92: 372-382.

Ratajczak, Z., Nippert J.B., Briggs J.M. and Blair J.M. 2014. Fire dynamics distinguish grasslands, shrublands and woodlands as alternative attractors in the Central Great Plains of North America. Journal of Ecology 102: 1374-1385.

Ratajczak, Z., J. B. Nippert, and S. L. Collins. 2012. Woody encroachment decreases diversity across North American grasslands and savannas. Ecology 93: 697-703.

Ratajczak, Z., Nippert J.B., Hartman J.C., and Ocheltree T.W. 2011. Positive feedbacks amplify rates of woody encroachment in mesic tallgrass prairie. Ecosphere 2: 1-14.




twitter: @RealZakRatajczak

office: 434 Birge Hall