Document Detail

Niche partitioning increases resource exploitation by diverse communities.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  18787167     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Classical ecological theory suggests that the coexistence of consumer species is fostered by resource-use differences, leading to greater resource use in communities with more species. However, explicit empirical support for this idea is lacking, because resource use by species is generally confounded with other species-specific attributes. We overcame this obstacle by co-opting behavioral plasticity in food choice among a group of animal consumers, allowing us to manipulate patterns of resource use while controlling for the effects of species identity and diversity. Within an aphid-parasitoid-radish community, we created a fully factorial manipulation of consumer resource-use breadth (specialist versus generalist) and species diversity (one versus three species) and found that resource exploitation improved with greater specialist, but not generalist, diversity. Therefore, resource partitioning, and not diversity per se, fostered greater overall resource consumption in our multispecies consumer communities.
Deborah L Finke; William E Snyder
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Science (New York, N.Y.)     Volume:  321     ISSN:  1095-9203     ISO Abbreviation:  Science     Publication Date:  2008 Sep 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2008-09-12     Completed Date:  2008-09-25     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0404511     Medline TA:  Science     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  1488-90     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Entomology, Washington State University, Pullman, WA 99164, USA.
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MeSH Terms
Aphids / parasitology*,  physiology*
Feeding Behavior
Host-Parasite Interactions
Raphanus / parasitology*,  physiology
Wasps / physiology*

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