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 537718
Title Symmetric assembly and disassembly processes in an ecological network
Author(s) Tylianakis, Jason M.; Martínez-García, Laura B.; Richardson, Sarah J.; Peltzer, Duane A.; Dickie, Ian A.
Source Ecology Letters 21 (2018)6. - ISSN 1461-023X - p. 896 - 904.
DOI https://doi.org/10.1111/ele.12957
Department(s) Chair Soil Biology and Biological Soil Quality
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2018
Keyword(s) Community assembly - ecosystem development - mutualist network - mycorrhizal symbiosis - preferential attachment - retrogression - succession
Abstract The processes whereby ecological networks emerge, persist and decay throughout ecosystem development are largely unknown. Here we study networks of plant and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal (AMF) communities along a 120 000 year soil chronosequence, as they undergo assembly (progression) and then disassembly (retrogression). We found that network assembly and disassembly were symmetrical, self-reinforcing processes that together were capable of generating key attributes of network architecture. Plant and AMF species that had short indirect paths to others in the community (i.e. high centrality), rather than many direct interaction partners (i.e. high degree), were best able to attract new interaction partners and, in the case of AMF species, also to retain existing interactions with plants during retrogression. We then show using simulations that these non-random patterns of attachment and detachment promote nestedness of the network. These results have implications for predicting extinction sequences, identifying focal points for invasions and suggesting trajectories for restoration.
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