Diversity and community biomass depend on dispersal and disturbance in microalgal communities

Matthiessen, Birte, Ptacnik, Robert and Hillebrand, Helmut (2010) Diversity and community biomass depend on dispersal and disturbance in microalgal communities Hydrobiologia, 653 . pp. 65-78. DOI 10.1007/s10750-010-0349-x.

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The evidence for species diversity effects
on ecosystem functions is mainly based on studies not
explicitly addressing local or regional processes
regulating coexistence or the importance of community
structure in terms of species evenness. In experimental
communities of marine benthic microalgae,
we altered the successional stages and thus the strength
of local species interactions by manipulating rates of
dispersal and disturbance. The treatments altered
realized species richness, evenness and community
biomass. For species richness, dispersal mattered only
at high disturbance rates; when opening new space,
dispersal led to maximized richness at intermediate
dispersal rates. Evenness, in contrast, decreased with
dispersal at low or no disturbance, i.e. at late successional stages. Community biomass showed a nonlinear
hump-shaped response to increasing dispersal at
all disturbance levels.We found a positive correlation
between richness and biomass at early succession, and
a strong negative correlation between evenness and
biomass at late succession. In early succession both
community biomass and richness depend directly on
dispersal from the regional pool, whereas the late
successional pattern shows that if interactions allow
the most productive species to become dominant,
diverting resources from this species (i.e. higher
evenness) reduces production. Our study emphasizes
the difference in biodiversity–function relationships
over time, as different mechanisms contribute to the
regulation of richness and evenness in early and late
successional stages.

Document Type: Article
Keywords: Ecology; Biodiversity ecosystem functioning; Richness; Evenness; Dispersal; Disturbance; Successional stage
Research affiliation: OceanRep > GEOMAR
OceanRep > GEOMAR > FB3 Marine Ecology > FB3-EOE-N Experimental Ecology - Food Webs
OceanRep > The Future Ocean - Cluster of Excellence
Refereed: Yes
DOI etc.: 10.1007/s10750-010-0349-x
ISSN: 0018-8158
Projects: Future Ocean
Date Deposited: 23 Jul 2010 09:44
Last Modified: 30 Jan 2017 12:05
URI: http://eprints.uni-kiel.de/id/eprint/8728

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