publication . Article . Other literature type . 2009

Dominant species can produce a negative relationship between species diversity and ecosystem function

Creed, Robert P.; Cherry, Robert P.; Pflaum, James R.; Wood, Chris J.;
  • Published: 01 May 2009 Journal: Oikos, volume 118, pages 723-732 (issn: 0030-1299, eissn: 1600-0706, Copyright policy)
  • Publisher: Wiley
Several studies have reported a positive relationship between species richness and ecosystem functioning. However, if much of a particular ecosystem function is performed by one species (i.e. a functionally dominant species) and this species is also a competitive dominant that excludes other taxa from a habitat, then it is possible to obtain a negative relationship between richness and ecosystem functioning. Results of a leaf pack breakdown experiment in a small stream suggested that the caddisfly Pycnopsyche gentilis, a common detritivorous insect in North American headwater streams, was both a functional and competitive dominant. In a second experiment we comp...
Medical Subject Headings: fungi
free text keywords: Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics, Botany, Dominance (ecology), Species richness, Species diversity, Ecosystem, Plant litter, Biology, Litter, Ecology, Detritivore, Population density
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