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A perspective on match/mismatch of phenology in community contexts


H. Doi, Inst. for Sustainable Sciences and Development, Hiroshima Univ., 1-3-1 Kagamiyama, JP-739-8530 Higashi-Hiroshima, Japan. E-mail:


Climate change has significant impacts on phenology of various organisms in a species-specific manner. Facing this problem, the match/mismatch hypothesis that phenological (a)synchrony with resource availability strongly influences recruitment success of a consumer population has recently received much attention. In this article, we discuss extending the conventional pairwise concept and demonstrate a community module-based approach as an initial step for exploring community consequences of species-specific phenological shifts caused by climate change. Our multispecies match/mismatch perspective leads to the prediction that phenological (a)synchrony among interacting species critically affects not only population recruitment of species but also key dynamical features of ecological communities such as trophic cascades, competitive hierarchies, and species coexistence. Explicit identification and consideration of species relationships is therefore desirable for a better understanding of seasonal community dynamics and thus community consequences of climate change-induced phenological shifts.