eCommons

 

A direct comparison of the consequences of plant genotypic and species diversity on communities and ecosystem function

Other Titles

Abstract

Biodiversity loss is proceeding at an unprecedented rate, yet we lack a thorough understanding of the consequences of losing diversity at different scales. While species diversity is known to impact community and ecosystem processes, genotypic diversity is assumed to have relatively smaller effects. Nonetheless, a few recent studies suggest that genotypic diversity may have quantitatively similar ecological consequences compared to species diversity. Here we show that increasing either genotypic diversity of common evening primrose (Oenothera biennis) or species diversity of old?field plant species resulted in nearly equivalent increases (?17%) in aboveground primary production. The predominant mechanism explaining this effect, niche complementarity, was similar for each type of diversity. Arthropod species richness also increased with both types of plant diversity, but the mechanisms leading to this effect differed: abundance?driven accumulation of arthropod species was important in plant genotypic polycultures, whereas resource specialization was important in plant species polycultures. Thus, similar increases in primary productivity differentially impacted higher trophic levels in response to each type of plant diversity. These results highlight important ecological similarities and differences between genotypic and species diversity and suggest that genotypic diversity may play a larger role in community and ecosystem processes than previously realized.

Journal / Series

Ecology

Volume & Issue

Description

Sponsorship

The NSF (DEB- 0950231 to A. A. Agrawal and IGERT small grant in Biogeochemistry and Environmental Biocomplexity to S. H. McArt, S. C. Cook-Patton, and A. L. Parachnowitsch) and USDA-NRI (2006-35302-17431 to J. S. Thaler) supported this work

Date Issued

2011-04-01

Publisher

Ecological Society of America

Keywords

arthropods; biodiversity; common evening primrose; community genetics; eastern North America; ecosystem function; Oenothera biennis; old fields

Location

Effective Date

Expiration Date

Sector

Employer

Union

Union Local

NAICS

Number of Workers

Committee Chair

Committee Co-Chair

Committee Member

Degree Discipline

Degree Name

Degree Level

Related Version

Cook-Patton, S. C., McArt, S. H., Parachnowitsch, A. L., Thaler, J. S., & Agrawal, A. A. (2011). A direct comparison of the consequences of plant genotypic and species diversity on communities and ecosystem function. Ecology, 92(4), 915–923.

Related To

Related Part

Based on Related Item

Has Other Format(s)

Part of Related Item

Related To

Related Publication(s)

Link(s) to Related Publication(s)

References

Link(s) to Reference(s)

Previously Published As

Government Document

ISBN

ISMN

ISSN

Other Identifiers

Rights

Rights URI

Types

article

Accessibility Feature

Accessibility Hazard

Accessibility Summary

Link(s) to Catalog Record