Journal of Ecology

Cover image for Vol. 101 Issue 4

July 2013

Volume 101, Issue 4

Pages 837–1083

  1. Determinants of plant community diversity and structure

    1. Top of page
    2. Determinants of plant community diversity and structure
    3. Dispersal
    4. Invasion ecology
    5. Plant–soil (below–ground) interactions
    6. Reproductive ecology
    7. Ecophysiology
    8. Plant–animal interactions
    9. Plant population and community dynamics
    10. Plant-herbivore interactions
    11. Plant–herbivore interactions
    1. Recolonizing wolves trigger a trophic cascade in Wisconsin (USA) (pages 837–845)

      Ramana Callan, Nathan P. Nibbelink, Thomas P. Rooney, Jane E. Wiedenhoeft and Adrian P. Wydeven

      Article first published online: 6 JUN 2013 | DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12095

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      Our results are consistent with hypothesized trophic effects on understorey plant communities triggered by a keystone predator recovering from regional extinction. In addition, we identified the response variables and spatial scales appropriate for detecting such differences in plant species composition. This study represents the first published evidence of a trophic cascade triggered by wolf recovery in the Great Lakes region.

    2. Rare species advantage? Richness of damage types due to natural enemies increases with species abundance in a wet tropical forest (pages 846–856)

      Bénédicte Bachelot and Richard K. Kobe

      Article first published online: 7 JUN 2013 | DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12094

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      The Janzen–Connell hypothesis (JC) explains the maintenance of high alpha diversity of tropical tree through differential pressure by natural enemies. We claimed the JC arises from variable richness of damage types due to natural enemies (RDNE). RDNE increased with host species abundance, suggesting a community compensatory trend. Supporting this interpretation of the JC, we found greater mortality risk with RDNE2.

    3. Contrasting changes in taxonomic, phylogenetic and functional diversity during a long-term succession: insights into assembly processes (pages 857–866)

      Oliver Purschke, Barbara C. Schmid, Martin T. Sykes, Peter Poschlod, Stefan G. Michalski, Walter Durka, Ingolf Kühn, Marten Winter and Honor C. Prentice

      Article first published online: 31 MAY 2013 | DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12098

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      Analysis of spatial and temporal turnover in different facets of diversity suggests that deterministic processes generate biodiversity during post-disturbance ecosystem development and that the relative importance of assembly processes has changed over time. Trait-mediated abiotic filtering appears to play an important role in community assembly during the early and early-mid stages of arable-to-grassland succession whereas the relative importance of competitive exclusion appears to have increased towards the later successional stages.

    4. Genetic basis of pathogen community structure for foundation tree species in a common garden and in the wild (pages 867–877)

      Posy E. Busby, George Newcombe, Rodolfo Dirzo and Thomas G. Whitham

      Article first published online: 25 JUN 2013 | DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12112

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      Plant species and genotypic variation can affect the local and geographic distribution of pathogen communities in a similar fashion as other diverse organisms (e.g. arthropods, plants, soil microbes), both within a relatively controlled common garden environment and in the wild.

  2. Dispersal

    1. Top of page
    2. Determinants of plant community diversity and structure
    3. Dispersal
    4. Invasion ecology
    5. Plant–soil (below–ground) interactions
    6. Reproductive ecology
    7. Ecophysiology
    8. Plant–animal interactions
    9. Plant population and community dynamics
    10. Plant-herbivore interactions
    11. Plant–herbivore interactions
    1. Plants as populations of release sites for seed dispersal: a structural-statistical analysis of the effects of competition on Raphanus raphanistrum (pages 878–888)

      Natalie Kelly, Roger D. Cousens, Mohammad S. Taghizadeh, Jim S. Hanan and David Mouillot

      Article first published online: 6 JUN 2013 | DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12097

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      The effect of competition on plant size is primarily a result of a reduction in initiation of branches. For species with limited dispersal ability, this results in a greatly modified seed shadow at short distances. In the case of agricultural weeds, the concentration of fruits at greater heights when competing with a crop might result in a greater proportion being dispersed long distances by harvesting machinery, but they would be fewer in number.

    2. Seed dispersal by wind: towards a conceptual framework of seed abscission and its contribution to long-distance dispersal (pages 889–904)

      Gustavo E. Pazos, David F. Greene, Gabriel Katul, Mónica B. Bertiller and Merel B. Soons

      Article first published online: 5 JUN 2013 | DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12103

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      We formulated two realistic mechanisms of diaspore abscission by applying concepts from materials science: large diaspore displacement and material fatigue. These reveal that the ambient wind speed ‘history’ experienced by a diaspore plays an important role in the timing of abscission and in the distance travelled, without any thresholds, and that the effect of the diaspore-wind interaction on long-distance dispersal varies between environments with different wind speed regimes.

  3. Invasion ecology

    1. Top of page
    2. Determinants of plant community diversity and structure
    3. Dispersal
    4. Invasion ecology
    5. Plant–soil (below–ground) interactions
    6. Reproductive ecology
    7. Ecophysiology
    8. Plant–animal interactions
    9. Plant population and community dynamics
    10. Plant-herbivore interactions
    11. Plant–herbivore interactions
    1. Indirect effects and facilitation among native and non-native species promote invasion success along an environmental stress gradient (pages 905–915)

      Phoebe L. Zarnetske, Tarik C. Gouhier, Sally D. Hacker, Eric W. Seabloom and Vrushali A. Bokil

      Article first published online: 7 JUN 2013 | DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12093

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      In systems with strong environmental forcing and stressful conditions such as coastal dunes, environmentally mediated positive and indirect species interactions can govern invasion success and long-term native–non-native coexistence. In doing so, these interactions ultimately shape community structure and ecosystem function. Understanding the joint effects of environmental forcing and species interactions on community assembly is particularly important in cases where species introductions can alter ecosystem services, such as coastal protection, which are vulnerable to the effects of climate change.

    2. Effects of native pollinator specialization, self-compatibility and flowering duration of European plant species on their invasiveness elsewhere (pages 916–923)

      Thomas Chrobock, Christiane N. Weiner, Michael Werner, Nico Blüthgen, Markus Fischer and Mark van Kleunen

      Article first published online: 25 JUN 2013 | DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12107

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      We showed that long flowering duration is related to the degree of invasion in other parts of the world, and a trend that pollinator generalization in the native range may interact with self-compatibility in determining the degree of invasion. Therefore, we conclude that such reproductive characteristics should be considered in risk assessment and management of introduced plant species.

    3. You have free access to this content
      Effects of soil fungi, disturbance and propagule pressure on exotic plant recruitment and establishment at home and abroad (pages 924–932)

      John L. Maron, Lauren P. Waller, Min A. Hahn, Alecu Diaconu, Robert W. Pal, Heinz Müller-Schärer, John N. Klironomos and Ragan M. Callaway

      Article first published online: 5 JUN 2013 | DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12108

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      Our results highlight the importance of simultaneously examining processes that could influence invasion in both ranges. They indicate that under ‘background’ undisturbed conditions, knapweed recruits and establishes at greater abundance in Montana than in Europe. However, our results do not support the importance of soil fungal pathogens, propagule pressure, or local disturbances as mechanisms for knapweed's differential success in North America versus Europe.

  4. Plant–soil (below–ground) interactions

    1. Top of page
    2. Determinants of plant community diversity and structure
    3. Dispersal
    4. Invasion ecology
    5. Plant–soil (below–ground) interactions
    6. Reproductive ecology
    7. Ecophysiology
    8. Plant–animal interactions
    9. Plant population and community dynamics
    10. Plant-herbivore interactions
    11. Plant–herbivore interactions
    1. The distribution of below-ground traits is explained by intrinsic species differences and intraspecific plasticity in response to root neighbours (pages 933–942)

      Oscar J. Valverde-Barrantes, Kurt A. Smemo, Larry M. Feinstein, Mark W. Kershner and Christopher B. Blackwood

      Article first published online: 3 JUN 2013 | DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12087

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      In a mixed-species forest, we found that intrinsic differences among species were more important than soil factors in explaining the distribution of root traits. Additionally, root trait variation at the species level was influenced by the presence of other species within cores. Community-aggregated variation was more influenced by the combination of species present than soil properties in each sample.

    2. You have free access to this content
      Linking litter decomposition of above- and below-ground organs to plant–soil feedbacks worldwide (pages 943–952)

      Grégoire T. Freschet, William K. Cornwell, David A. Wardle, Tatyana G. Elumeeva, Wendan Liu, Benjamin G. Jackson, Vladimir G. Onipchenko, Nadejda A. Soudzilovskaia, Jianping Tao and Johannes H.C. Cornelissen

      Article first published online: 7 JUN 2013 | DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12092

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      In this study, using meta-analysis techniques and global literature data, we provide evidence for worldwide interspecific coordination in leaf-root-stem decomposability, and quantify the relative roles of litters from above- and below-ground plant organs in ecosystem labile organic matter dynamics. Based on these results, we propose a new conceptual framework relating plant traits to organic matter dynamics taking the whole-plant perspective.

  5. Reproductive ecology

    1. Top of page
    2. Determinants of plant community diversity and structure
    3. Dispersal
    4. Invasion ecology
    5. Plant–soil (below–ground) interactions
    6. Reproductive ecology
    7. Ecophysiology
    8. Plant–animal interactions
    9. Plant population and community dynamics
    10. Plant-herbivore interactions
    11. Plant–herbivore interactions
    1. Does the likelihood of an Allee effect on plant fecundity depend on the type of pollinator? (pages 953–962)

      Karl J. Duffy, Kirsten L. Patrick and Steven D. Johnson

      Article first published online: 19 JUN 2013 | DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12104

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      An Allee effect on plant fecundity may depend on the type of pollinator. In Kniphofia linearifolia, birds were the most effective pollinators, responded positively to plant aggregation, and were associated with increased fecundity. Therefore, the responses of effective pollinators to plant aggregation may underlie Allee effects on plant fecundity.

    2. Shifts in morphological and mechanical traits compensate for performance costs of reproduction in a wave-swept seaweed (pages 963–970)

      Kyle W. Demes, Christopher D. G. Harley, Laura M. Anderson and Emily Carrington

      Article first published online: 6 JUN 2013 | DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12099

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      In addition to the metabolic costs associated with reproduction, plant-like taxa can exhibit mechanical costs of reproduction if shifts in mechanical traits associated with reproductive effort reduce performance. Here, we show that the mechanical costs of reproduction in a kelp (increased drag from decreased flexibility) are mitigated by concomitant shifts in blade morphology and tissue strength.

  6. Ecophysiology

    1. Top of page
    2. Determinants of plant community diversity and structure
    3. Dispersal
    4. Invasion ecology
    5. Plant–soil (below–ground) interactions
    6. Reproductive ecology
    7. Ecophysiology
    8. Plant–animal interactions
    9. Plant population and community dynamics
    10. Plant-herbivore interactions
    11. Plant–herbivore interactions
    1. Plasticity influencing the light compensation point offsets the specialization for light niches across shrub species in a tropical forest understorey (pages 971–980)

      Frank J. Sterck, Remko A. Duursma, Robert W. Pearcy, Fernando Valladares, Mikolaj Cieslak and Monique Weemstra

      Article first published online: 3 JUN 2013 | DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12076

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      Impacts of leaf, crown architecture and size on growth and whole-plant light compensation point - our proxy for shade tolerance-were compared across 15 tropical forest shrub species. We conducted an experiment growing saplings in three light levels and used an eco-physiological plant model to estimate growth and shade tolerance. Our study implies that plasticity in traits largely neutralized the ability of species to specialize for different light niches.

      (For illustration, we suggest Fig. S1 in Supporting Information)

    2. Assessing the causes and scales of the leaf economics spectrum using venation networks in Populus tremuloides (pages 981–989)

      Benjamin Blonder, Cyrille Violle and Brian J. Enquist

      Article first published online: 25 JUN 2013 | DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12102

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      The leaf economics spectrum (LES) describes interspecific leaf trait correlations. We develop theory for the LES based on trade-offs in leaf venation networks using Populus tremuloides clones. We show that the global LES correlations are also found across leaves within individual organisms and may be explained by variation in venation network geometry and its scaling with leaf morphology.

  7. Plant–animal interactions

    1. Top of page
    2. Determinants of plant community diversity and structure
    3. Dispersal
    4. Invasion ecology
    5. Plant–soil (below–ground) interactions
    6. Reproductive ecology
    7. Ecophysiology
    8. Plant–animal interactions
    9. Plant population and community dynamics
    10. Plant-herbivore interactions
    11. Plant–herbivore interactions
    1. Logging and forest edges reduce redundancy in plant–frugivore networks in an old-growth European forest (pages 990–999)

      Jörg Albrecht, Dana G. Berens, Nico Blüthgen, Bogdan Jaroszewicz, Nuria Selva and Nina Farwig

      Article first published online: 5 JUN 2013 | DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12105

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      Habitat degradation may alter consumer/resource ratios, which in turn may affect the diet breadth and the functional niche of animal mutualists. We show that reduced abundance of habitat specialist frugivores in degraded forest habitats resulted in reduced consumer/resource ratios and in increased dietary specialization of the remaining frugivores. This ultimately coincided with a loss of functional redundancy in plant–frugivore associations.

    2. Possible role of weaver ants, Oecophylla smaragdina, in shaping plant–pollinator interactions in South-East Asia (pages 1000–1006)

      Miguel A. Rodríguez-Gironés, Francisco G. Gonzálvez, Ana L. Llandres, Richard T. Corlett and Luis Santamaría

      Article first published online: 29 MAY 2013 | DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12100

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      The Asian weaver ant, Oecophylla smaragdina, uses flowers as hunting platforms to ambush visiting pollinators. Its presence affects the behaviour of pollinators and the reproductive success of plants. Because of its abundance and mobility, O. smaragdina may play a key role in shaping the ecological and evolutionary trajectories of plant-pollinator interactions in SE Asia.

  8. Plant population and community dynamics

    1. Top of page
    2. Determinants of plant community diversity and structure
    3. Dispersal
    4. Invasion ecology
    5. Plant–soil (below–ground) interactions
    6. Reproductive ecology
    7. Ecophysiology
    8. Plant–animal interactions
    9. Plant population and community dynamics
    10. Plant-herbivore interactions
    11. Plant–herbivore interactions
    1. Fungal endophyte infection and host genetic background jointly modulate host response to an aphid-transmitted viral pathogen (pages 1007–1018)

      Megan A. Rúa, Rebecca L. McCulley and Charles E. Mitchell

      Article first published online: 25 JUN 2013 | DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12106

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      Beneficial effects provided by endophyte infection do not arise strictly from altering host interactions with aphid viral vectors, but also occur by changing host responses to virus infection. Specifically, endophytes alleviate the negative effect of virus infection on the proportion of total plant biomass allocated to roots.

  9. Plant-herbivore interactions

    1. Top of page
    2. Determinants of plant community diversity and structure
    3. Dispersal
    4. Invasion ecology
    5. Plant–soil (below–ground) interactions
    6. Reproductive ecology
    7. Ecophysiology
    8. Plant–animal interactions
    9. Plant population and community dynamics
    10. Plant-herbivore interactions
    11. Plant–herbivore interactions
    1. Mycorrhizal abundance affects the expression of plant resistance traits and herbivore performance (pages 1019–1029)

      Rachel L. Vannette and Mark D. Hunter

      Article first published online: 25 JUN 2013 | DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12111

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      Our results demonstrate that the abundance of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi with which plants associate alters the expression of plant resistance, increasing specialist herbivore performance at high AMF abundance. AMF abundance, identity and presence all explained much variation in plant phenotype. We conclude that AMF abundance may be a key, but overlooked factor in determining the outcome of mycorrhizal mutualisms.

  10. Plant–herbivore interactions

    1. Top of page
    2. Determinants of plant community diversity and structure
    3. Dispersal
    4. Invasion ecology
    5. Plant–soil (below–ground) interactions
    6. Reproductive ecology
    7. Ecophysiology
    8. Plant–animal interactions
    9. Plant population and community dynamics
    10. Plant-herbivore interactions
    11. Plant–herbivore interactions
    1. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Effects of mammalian herbivore declines on plant communities: observations and experiments in an African savanna (pages 1030–1041)

      Hillary S. Young, Douglas J. McCauley, Kristofer M. Helgen, Jacob R. Goheen, Erik Otárola-Castillo, Todd M. Palmer, Robert M. Pringle, Truman P. Young and Rodolfo Dirzo

      Article first published online: 6 JUN 2013 | DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12096

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      Abiotic environmental factors modulate effects of mammalian herbivory on plant communities and are critical to understanding likely impacts of wild herbivore declines. Our results also demonstrate need to be cautious when extrapolating results from exclosure experiments to predict the consequences of defaunation as it proceeds in the Anthropocene, as landscape level results often do not mimic experimental results.

    2. Permafrost-driven differences in habitat quality determine plant response to gall-inducing mite herbivory (pages 1042–1052)

      Rajit Patankar, William L. Quinton and Jennifer L. Baltzer

      Article first published online: 29 MAY 2013 | DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12101

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      Impacts of galling on deciduous hosts in a sub-arctic peatland complex are variable, and are most pronounced in habitats that impose abiotic stresses (e.g. cooler, more variable soil temperatures on permafrost plateaus). These impacts include reductions in photosynthesis and stomatal conductance that can affect energy balances at the plant level, thereby potentially contributing to localized thaw processes in these environments.

    3. Combined effects of fragmentation and herbivory on Posidonia oceanica seagrass ecosystems (pages 1053–1061)

      Alessandro Gera, Jordi F. Pagès, Javier Romero and Teresa Alcoverro

      Article first published online: 5 JUN 2013 | DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12109

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      While fragmentation has already been identified as an important external agent of seagrass decline, the combination of fragmentation and herbivory can seriously exacerbate structural losses and affect primary production, profoundly compromise the role of seagrasses as habitat-forming ecosystems. These interactions between external stressors and internal drivers may result in large unexpected consequences that may flow on to the rest of the ecosystem.

      Fig. 2. Linear regression showing a significant relationship between patch size (log transformed) and the nitrogen content (%N) of Posidonia oceanica rhizomes taken at the end of the experiment (= 40). Full circles (●) indicate plots where herbivores were present, while empty circles (○) indicate caged plots without herbivores.

    4. Transgenerational effects of herbivory in a group of long-lived tree species: maternal damage reduces offspring allocation to resistance traits, but not growth (pages 1062–1073)

      Liza M. Holeski, Matthew S. Zinkgraf, John J. Couture, Thomas G. Whitham and Richard L. Lindroth

      Article first published online: 5 JUN 2013 | DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12110

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      This is the first instance in which transgenerational effects of herbivory on growth and defence traits have been described in long-lived, woody plant species. Populus differs substantially from herbaceous plant species or short-lived animals in which transgenerational plasticity of resistance has been examined, in terms of life history (time from germination or hatching to reproductive maturity) and/or in the lag time between generations. These differences may influence the ecological and evolutionary relevance of transgenerational plasticity in defence.

    5. Climatic stress mediates the impacts of herbivory on plant population structure and components of individual fitness (pages 1074–1083)

      Allison M. Louthan, Daniel F. Doak, Jacob R. Goheen, Todd M. Palmer and Robert M. Pringle

      Article first published online: 7 JUN 2013 | DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.12090

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      Our results show that measuring both organismal and population-level responses provides a more complete picture of how herbivory affects performance, and that understanding the multiple facets of plant response to herbivores (e.g. both individual performance and abundance) may be necessary to predict how plant species' abundance and distribution patterns will shift in response to changing climate and herbivore numbers.

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