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Sökning: WFRF:(Eklöf Anna 1976 )

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1.
  • Brose, Ulrich, et al. (författare)
  • Predicting the consequences of species lossusing size-structured biodiversity approaches
  • 2017
  • Ingår i: Biological Reviews. - : Wiley-Blackwell. - 1464-7931 .- 1469-185X. ; 92:2, s. 684-697
  • Forskningsöversikt (refereegranskat)abstract
    • Understanding the consequences of species loss in complex ecological communities is one of the great challenges in current biodiversity research. For a long time, this topic has been addressed by traditional biodiversity experiments. Most of these approaches treat species as trait-free, taxonomic units characterizing communities only by species number without accounting for species traits. However, extinctions do not occur at random as there is a clear correlation between extinction risk and species traits. In this review, we assume that large species will be most threatened by extinction and use novel allometric and size-spectrum concepts that include body mass as a primary species trait at the levels of populations and individuals, respectively, to re-assess three classic debates on the relationships between biodiversity and (i) food-web structural complexity, (ii) community dynamic stability, and (iii) ecosystem functioning. Contrasting current expectations, size-structured approaches suggest that the loss of large species, that typically exploit most resource species, may lead to future food webs that are less interwoven and more structured by chains of interactions and compartments. The disruption of natural body-mass distributions maintaining food-web stability may trigger avalanches of secondary extinctions and strong trophic cascades with expected knock-on effects on the functionality of the ecosystems. Therefore, we argue that it is crucial to take into account body size as a species trait when analysing the consequences of biodiversity loss for natural ecosystems. Applying size-structured approaches provides an integrative ecological concept that enables a better understanding of each species' unique role across communities and the causes and consequences of biodiversity loss.
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2.
  • Brose, Ulrich, et al. (författare)
  • Spatial aspects of food webs
  • 2005
  • Ingår i: Dynamic Food Webs. - London, UK : Elsevier. - 9780120884582 - 0120884585 ; , s. 463-469
  • Konferensbidrag (refereegranskat)abstract
    • Aspects of spatial scale have until recently been largely ignored in empirical and theoretical food web studies (e.g., Cohen & Briand 1984, Martinez 1992, but see Bengtsson et al. 2002, Bengtsson & Berg, this book). Most ecologists tend to conceptualize and represent food webs as static representations of communities, depicting a community assemblage as sampled at a particular point in time, or highly aggregated trophic group composites over broader scales of time and space (Polis et al. 1996). Moreover, most researchers depict potential food webs, which contain all species sampled and all potential trophic links based on literature reviews, several sampling events, or laboratory feeding trials. In reality, however, not all these potential feeding links are realized as not all species co-occur, and not all samples in space or time can contain all species (Schoenly & Cohen 1991), hence, yielding a variance of food web architecture in space (Brose et al. 2004). In recent years, food web ecologists have recognized that food webs are open systems – that are influence by processes in adjacent systems – and spatially heterogeneous (Polis et al. 1996). This influence of adjacent systems can be bottom-up, due to allochthonous inputs of resources (Polis & Strong 1996, Huxel & McCann 1998, Mulder & De Zwart 2003), or top-down due to the regular or irregular presence of top predators (e.g., Post et al. 2000, Scheu 2001). However, without a clear understanding of the size of a system and a definition of its boundaries it is not possible to judge if flows are internal or driven by adjacent systems. Similarly, the importance of allochthony is only assessable when the balance of inputs and outputs are known relative to the scale and throughputs within the system itself. At the largest scale of the food web – the home range of a predator such as wolf, lion, shark or eagle of roughly 50 km2 to 300 km2 –the balance of inputs and outputs caused by wind and movement of water may be small compared to the total trophic flows within the home range of the large predator (Cousins 1990). Acknowledging these issues of space, Polis et al (1996) argued that progress toward the next phase of food web studies would require addressing spatial and temporal processes. Here, we present a conceptual framework with some nuclei about the role of space in food web ecology. Although we primarily address spatial aspects, this framework is linked to a more general concept of spatio-temporal scales of ecological research.
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3.
  • Eklöf, Anna, 1976- (författare)
  • Cascading extinctions in food webs : local and regional processes
  • 2004
  • Licentiatavhandling (övrigt vetenskapligt)abstract
    • Ecological communities all over the world are loosing biodiversity due to different kinds of human activities and there is an urgent need of understanding how those losses affect the function of the ecosystems on which we all depend. The community's response to species losses is likely to depend on both the structure of the local community as well as its interactions with surrounding communities. Also the characteristics of the species going extinct do affect how the community structure changes. The main purpose of this thesis is to study how local population dynamics and regional processes in food webs affect ecological communities' response to species loss, especially the risk of cascading extinctions.In Paper I we use a set of model food webs with different shapes and connectance to look at how the structure of the community affects its resistance to species loss. We also investigate how the resistance is affected by which species, according to trophic level and connectivity, that is lost initially. What we find is that food webs with lower connectance seem to be more vulnerable than more connected communities. The loss of a species at low trophic level and / or with high connectivity triggers the on average highest number of secondary extinctions. We also discuss about the structure of the post­ extinction community and compare our analysis with topological studies.In paper Il we use as set of metacommunities with different connectances and different number of patches and we vary the dispersal distances and migration rates. The aim of this paper is to investigate how web connectance of local communities, number of habitat patches and dispersal patterns affects a metacommunity's response to the global loss of a species. We find that asynchrony among patch dynamics may arise from relatively low rates of migration, and that the inclusion of space significantly reduces the risk of global cascading extinctions. It is shown that communities with sparsely connected food webs are the most sensitive to species loss, but also that they are particularly well stabilised by the introduction of space. In agreement with theoretical studies of non-spatial habitats, species at the highest trophic level are the most vulnerable to secondary extinction.Paper III is a book chapter that emerged from a working group during a food web symposium in Giessen, Germany 2003. It is dealing with ideas of how to look at spatial aspects of food webs.
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4.
  • Eklöf, Anna, 1976-, et al. (författare)
  • Cascading extinctions in spatially coupled food webs
  • Annan publikation (övrigt vetenskapligt)abstract
    • The spatial structure of ecological communities as well as the dynamics and structure of local communities can be expected to have important consequences for the long-term persistence of metacommunities, that is, their resistance to different kind of perturbations. The aim of the present work is to investigate how web connectance of local communities and number of local habitat patches affects a metacommunity’s response to the global loss of a species. We find that the inclusion of space significantly reduces the risk of global and local cascading extinctions. It is shown that communities with sparsely connected food webs are the most sensitive to species loss, but also that they are particularly well stabilized by the introduction of space. In agreement with theoretical studies of non-spatial habitats, species at the highest trophic level are the most vulnerable to secondary extinction, although they often take the longest time to die out. This is particularly pronounced in spatial habitats, where the top predators appear to be the least well adapted to exploit the stabilizing properties of space.
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5.
  • Eklöf, Anna, 1976-, et al. (författare)
  • Networks, Ecological
  • 2012. - 1
  • Ingår i: Encyclopedia of Theoretical Ecology. - : University of California Press. - 9780520269651 - 9780520951785 ; , s. 470-478
  • Bokkapitel (refereegranskat)
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6.
  • Eklöf, Anna, 1976-, et al. (författare)
  • Relevance of evolutionary history for food web structure
  • 2012
  • Ingår i: Proceedings of the Royal Society of London. Biological Sciences. - : The Royal Society Publishing. - 0962-8452 .- 1471-2954. ; 279:1733, s. 1588-1596
  • Tidskriftsartikel (refereegranskat)abstract
    • Explaining the structure of ecosystems is one of the great challenges of ecology. Simple models for foodweb structure aim at disentangling the complexity of ecological interaction networks and detect the main forces that are responsible for their shape. Trophic interactions are influenced by species traits, which in turn are largely determined by evolutionary history. Closely related species are more likely to share similar traits, such as body size, feeding mode and habitat preference than distant ones. Here, we present a theoretical framework for analysing whether evolutionary history—represented by taxonomic classification—provides valuable information on food web structure. In doing so, we measure which taxonomic ranks better explain species interactions. Our analysis is based on partitioning of the species into taxonomic units. For each partition, we compute the likelihood that a probabilistic model for food web structurere produces the data using this information. We find that taxonomic partitions produce significantly higher likelihoods than expected at random. Marginal likelihoods (Bayes factors) are used to perform model selection among taxonomic ranks. We show that food webs are best explained by the coarser taxonomic ranks (kingdom to class). Our methods provide a way to explicitly include evolutionary history in models for food web structure.
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7.
  • Eklöf, Anna, 1976-, et al. (författare)
  • Secondary extinctions in food webs : a Bayesian network approach
  • 2013
  • Ingår i: Methods in Ecology and Evolution. - : Wiley-Blackwell. - 2041-210X .- 2041-210X. ; 4:8, s. 760-770
  • Tidskriftsartikel (refereegranskat)abstract
    • Ecological communities are composed of populations connected in tangled networks of ecological interactions. Therefore, the extinction of a species can reverberate through the network and cause other (possibly distantly connected) species to go extinct as well. The study of these secondary extinctions is a fertile area of research in ecological network theory.However, to facilitate practical applications, several improvements to the current analytical approaches are needed. In particular, we need to consider that (i) species have different ‘a priori’ probabilities of extinction, (ii) disturbances can simultaneously affect several species, and (iii) extinction risk of consumers likely grows with resource loss. All these points can be included in dynamical models, which are, however, difficult to parameterize.Here we advance the study of secondary extinctions with Bayesian networks. We show how this approach can account for different extinction responses using binary – where each resource has the same importance – and quantitative data – where resources are weighted by their importance. We simulate ecological networks using a popular dynamical model (the Allometric Trophic Network model) and use it to test our method.We find that the Bayesian network model captures the majority of the secondary extinctions produced by the dynamical model and that consumers’ responses to species loss are best modelled using a nonlinear sigmoid function. We also show that an approach based exclusively on food web structure loses power when species at higher trophic levels are preferentially lost. Because the loss of apex predators is unfortunately widespread, the results highlight a serious limitation of studies on network robustness.
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8.
  • Eklöf, Anna, 1976- (författare)
  • Species extinctions in food webs : local and regional processes
  • 2009
  • Doktorsavhandling (övrigt vetenskapligt)abstract
    • Loss of biodiversity is one of the most severe threats to the ecosystems of the world. The major causes behind the high population and species extinction rates are anthropogenic activities such as overharvesting of natural populations, pollution, climate change and destruction and fragmentation of natural habitats. There is an urgent need of understanding how these species losses affect the ecological structure and functioning of our ecosystems. Ecological communities exist in a landscape but the spatial aspects of community dynamics have until recently to large extent been ignored. However, the community’s response to species losses is likely to depend on both the structure of the local community as well as its interactions with surrounding communities. Also the characteristics of the species going extinct do affect how the community can cope with species loss. The overall goal of the present work has been to investigate how both local and regional processes affect ecosystem stability, in the context of preserved biodiversity and maintained ecosystem functioning. The focus is particularly on how these processes effects ecosystem’s response to species loss. To accomplish this goal I have formulated and analyzed mathematical models of ecological communities. We start by analyzing the local processes (Paper I and II) and continue by adding the regional processes (Paper III, IV and V).In Paper I we analyze dynamical models of ecological communities of different complexity (connectance) to investigate how the structure of the communities affects their resistance to species loss. We also investigate how the resistance is affected by the characteristics, like trophic level and connectivity, of the initially lost species. We find that complex communities are more resistant to species loss than simple communities. The loss of species at low trophic levels and/or with high connectivity (many links to other species) triggers, on average, the highest number of secondary extinctions. We also investigate the structure of the post-extinction community. Moreover, we compare our dynamical analysis with results from topological analysis to evaluate the importance of incorporating dynamics when assessing the risk and extent of cascading extinctions.The characteristics of a species, like its trophic position and connectivity (number of ingoing and outgoing trophic links) will affect the consequences of its loss as well as its own vulnerability to secondary extinction. In Paper II we characterize the species according to their trophic/ecological uniqueness, a new measure of species characteristic we develop in this paper. A species that has no prey or predators in common with any other species in the community will have a high tropic uniqueness. Here we examine the effect of secondary extinctions on an ecological community’s trophic diversity, the range of different trophic roles played by the species in a community. We find that secondary extinctions cause loss of trophic diversity greater than expected from chance. This occurs because more tropically unique species are more vulnerable to secondary extinctions.In Paper III, IV and V we expand the analysis to also include the spatial dimension. Paper III is a book chapter discussing spatial aspects of food webs. In Paper IV we analyze how metacommunities (a set of local communities in the landscape connected by species dispersal) respond to species loss and how this response is affected by the structure of the local communities and the number of patches in the metacommunity. We find that the inclusion of space reduces the risk of global and local extinctions and that lowly connected communities are more sensitive to species loss.In Paper V we investigate how the trophic structure of the local communities, the spatial structure of the landscape and the dispersal patterns of species affect the risk of local extinctions in the metacommunity. We find that the pattern of dispersal can have large effects on local diversity. Dispersal rate as well as dispersal distance are important: low dispersal rates and localized dispersal decrease the risk of local and global extinctions while high dispersal rates and global dispersal increase the risk. We also show that the structure of the local communities plays a significant role for the effects of dispersal on the dynamics of the metacommunity. The species that are most affected by the introduction of the spatial dimension are the top predators.
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9.
  • Eklöf, Anna, 1976-, et al. (författare)
  • Species loss and secondary extinctions in simple and complex model communities
  • 2006
  • Ingår i: Journal of Animal Ecology. - : Wiley InterScience. - 0021-8790 .- 1365-2656. ; 75:1, s. 239-246
  • Tidskriftsartikel (refereegranskat)abstract
    • The loss of a species from an ecological community can trigger a cascade of secondary extinctions. Here we investigate how the complexity (connectance) of model communities affects their response to species loss. Using dynamic analysis based on a global criterion of persistence (permanence) and topological analysis we investigate the extent of secondary extinctions following the loss of different kinds of species.We show that complex communities are, on average, more resistant to species loss than simple communities: the number of secondary extinctions decreases with increasing connectance. However, complex communities are more vulnerable to loss of top predators than simple communities.The loss of highly connected species (species with many links to other species) and species at low trophic levels triggers, on average, the largest number of secondary extinctions. The effect of the connectivity of a species is strongest in webs with low connectance.Most secondary extinctions are due to direct bottom-up effects: consumers go extinct when their resources are lost. Secondary extinctions due to trophic cascades and disruption of predator-mediated coexistence also occur. Secondary extinctions due to disruption of predator-mediated coexistence are more common in complex communities than in simple communities, while bottom-up and top-down extinction cascades are more common in simple communities.Topological analysis of the response of communities to species loss always predicts a lower number of secondary extinctions than dynamic analysis, especially in food webs with high connectance.
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10.
  • Gudmundson, Sara, 1985- (författare)
  • Species Responses to Environmental Fluctuations : impacts of food web interactions and noise color
  • 2017
  • Doktorsavhandling (övrigt vetenskapligt)abstract
    • Species constantly experience changes in their environmental conditions owing to natural or human induces reasons. Understanding how species respond to these fluctuations are important for ecology, especially given the ongoing climate change. Empirical studies have shown that species respond differently to the same disturbance. However, our knowledge of what create these differences in the environmental response is limited and in most cases based on studies focusing on single species. In this thesis, I have taken a theoretical approach and used dynamical models to investigate how the population dynamics of species are affected by species-species interactions and environmental fluctuations. In the first paper (Paper I) I investigated how a species respond to environmental fluctuations when isolated or embedded in a food web. The study showed that species-species interactions had an effect in temporally positively autocorrelated environments (red noise) but not in uncorrelated environments (white noise). This was owing to species following their equilibrium densities in red environments which in turn enabled species-species interactions to come into play. Red environmental variables are more prominent in nature than white. Thus, these results show the importance of using a food web approach when analyzing species response to environmental fluctuations. The most commonly discussed effect of climate change is an elevated mean temperature. This shift is expected to affect the growth rate of many species. However, there is no robust theory of how we should expect species in food webs to respond to a rise in temperature. In the second paper (Paper II) I defined and studied the dynamic rate of food webs(DR) acting analogously to single species growth rate. I found that the higher DR the easier for species population densities to follow their equilibrium over time. Both DR and noise color changed the temporal relationship between the population and the environmental noise. Thus, it is of major importance to take the scale of time into consideration when investigating species response to environmental fluctuations. Another important factor which affect population dynamics is species spatial distributions. Dispersal between subpopulations enable individuals to rescue or prolong the time to extinction for the population seen as a whole. In the third paper (Paper III), I investigated how species in food webs respond to environments that varies both in time and space and compared the results with the one from single species. I found that single species were stabilized by an increased dispersal rate independent of the noise color. Species-species interactions had an effect for some of the species in these landscapes.At red asynchronous noise, one resource species in each food web had a local minimum in stability at low dispersal rate. Here, dispersal decoupled local population dynamics and prevented species from tracking their equilibriums. At high dispersal rates, all resource species and their single species counterparts were stabilized by dispersal as local patch dynamics lost its importance. Environmental noise together with the spatial dimension does seem to explain much of the stability properties of species on our planet. However, natural ecosystems are much more complex and species rich than the food web models I have used so far. Theoreticians have previously had a hard time describing stable complex systems that survive environmental fluctuations. Thus, in my fourth and last project (PaperIV) I investigated how species population dynamics are affected by environmental fluctuations when embedded in larger food webs. These systems were built by connecting food web modules with periodic boundary conditions (PBC). The PBC method has previously helped physicists to understand the nature of waves and particles by removing the edges in systems. I found that food web size does not have to have a negative effect on food web stability. I showed that by removing the destabilizing effect of edges it is possible to describe large stable food webs, more similar to natural ecosystems. Overall, the research presented here give new insights into species responses to environmental fluctuations. They especially highlight the importance of considering both species interactions and environmental noise color when studying population dynamics in a fluctuating environment. A food web approach is necessary when analyzing species population dynamics and planning for conservation actions, especially when studying the effects of climate change on biodiversity.
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