Document Detail

Low functional diversity and no redundancy in British avian assemblages.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  17714276     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
1. Spatial and temporal patterns in functional diversity can reveal the patterns and processes behind community assembly and whether ecological redundancy exists. Here, we analyse functional diversity in British avian assemblages over a period of about 20 years. 2. Functional diversity is generally lower than expected by chance, indicating that assemblages contain species with relatively similar functional traits. One potential explanation is filtering for traits suitable to particular habitats, though other explanations exist. 3. There was no evidence of ecological redundancy over the 20 years. In fact, changes in functional diversity were almost exactly proportional to changes in species richness. 4. The absence of functional redundancy results from little redundancy intrinsic to the species' functional relationships and also because compositional change was nonrandom. Observed extinction and colonization events caused greater changes in functional diversity than if these events were random. 5. Our findings suggest that community assembly is influenced by the traits of species and that observed changes in functional diversity provide no reason to believe that the functioning of natural systems is buffered against change by ecological redundancy.
Owen L Petchey; Karl L Evans; Isla S Fishburn; Kevin J Gaston
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  The Journal of animal ecology     Volume:  76     ISSN:  0021-8790     ISO Abbreviation:  J Anim Ecol     Publication Date:  2007 Sep 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2007-08-23     Completed Date:  2007-11-02     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0376574     Medline TA:  J Anim Ecol     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  977-85     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Animal and Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield, Sheffield S10 1SA, UK.
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MeSH Terms
Birds / physiology*
Cluster Analysis
Conservation of Natural Resources
Great Britain
Models, Biological
Models, Theoretical
Species Specificity

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