Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 341578
Title Global change alters the stability of food webs
Author(s) Emmerson, M.; Bezemer, T.M.; Hunter, M.D.; Jones, T.H.
Source Global Change Biology 11 (2005)3. - ISSN 1354-1013 - p. 490 - 501.
DOI https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2486.2005.00919.x
Department(s) Nature Conservation and Plant Ecology
PE&RC
WIMEK
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2005
Keyword(s) elevated atmospheric co2 - insect herbivore interactions - capita interaction strength - carbon-dioxide atmospheres - prey body-size - primary productivity - ecosystem services - real ecosystems - deciduous trees - plant-growth
Abstract Recent research has generally shown that a small change in the number of species in a food web can have consequences both for community structure and ecosystem processes. However `change¿ is not limited to just the number of species in a community, but might include an alteration to such properties as precipitation, nutrient cycling and temperature. How such changes might affect species interactions is important, not just through the presence or absence of interactions, but also because the patterning of interaction strengths among species is intimately associated with community stability. Interaction strengths encompass such properties as feeding rates and assimilation efficiencies, and encapsulate functionally important information with regard to ecosystem processes. Interaction strengths represent the pathways and transfer of energy through an ecosystem. We review the best empirical data available detailing the frequency distribution of interaction strengths in communities. We present the underlying (but consistent) pattern of species interactions and discuss the implications of this patterning. We then examine how such a basic pattern might be affected given various scenarios of `change¿ and discuss the consequences for community stability and ecosystem functioning. Keywords: community; ecosystems; food webs; herbivore; persistence; plant; predators; prey; resilience; stability
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