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Invasive plants threaten the least mobile butterflies in Switzerland


Gallien, Laure; Altermatt, Florian; Wiemers, Martin; Schweiger, Oliver; Zimmermann, Niklaus E (2017). Invasive plants threaten the least mobile butterflies in Switzerland. Diversity and Distributions, 23(2):185-195.

Abstract

Aim: Biological invasions are today the second-largest global threat for biodiver- sity. Once introduced, exotic plant species can modify ecosystem composition, structure and dynamics, eventually driving native species to local extinction. Among the groups of organisms, most likely to be directly affected by exotic invasive plants are herbivorous insects, such as butterflies, which strongly depend on plants throughout their life cycle. However, it remains unclear whether invasive plants have a negative or a positive effect on butterfly diversity at a landscape scale.
Location: Switzerland.
Methods: Using an extensive inventory (393 sites across Switzerland) of both butterfly and invasive plants, we explore the impact of 31 invasive black listed plant species on local butterfly richness. We further identify each butterfly spe- cies’ response to invasive plants (i.e. positive, neutral or negative) and analyse the functional and phylogenetic characteristics of these different groups of species.
Results: Our results indicate that butterfly richness negatively correlates with an increase in invasive plant richness. When studying the individual response of each butterfly species to the number of invasive plants, we found that no single butterfly is profiting from invasive plant species, while 28 butterfly species (24%) suffer from the presence of invasive plants. We further show that the species negatively affected are on average less mobile than the unaffected species and that they are phylogenetically clustered.
Main conclusions: Our results present evidences of the influence of invasive species on other trophic levels and interaction networks. We further highlight that a lack of management efforts for mitigating invasive plant impacts threat- ens specific sections of the functional and phylogenetic diversity of butterflies.

Abstract

Aim: Biological invasions are today the second-largest global threat for biodiver- sity. Once introduced, exotic plant species can modify ecosystem composition, structure and dynamics, eventually driving native species to local extinction. Among the groups of organisms, most likely to be directly affected by exotic invasive plants are herbivorous insects, such as butterflies, which strongly depend on plants throughout their life cycle. However, it remains unclear whether invasive plants have a negative or a positive effect on butterfly diversity at a landscape scale.
Location: Switzerland.
Methods: Using an extensive inventory (393 sites across Switzerland) of both butterfly and invasive plants, we explore the impact of 31 invasive black listed plant species on local butterfly richness. We further identify each butterfly spe- cies’ response to invasive plants (i.e. positive, neutral or negative) and analyse the functional and phylogenetic characteristics of these different groups of species.
Results: Our results indicate that butterfly richness negatively correlates with an increase in invasive plant richness. When studying the individual response of each butterfly species to the number of invasive plants, we found that no single butterfly is profiting from invasive plant species, while 28 butterfly species (24%) suffer from the presence of invasive plants. We further show that the species negatively affected are on average less mobile than the unaffected species and that they are phylogenetically clustered.
Main conclusions: Our results present evidences of the influence of invasive species on other trophic levels and interaction networks. We further highlight that a lack of management efforts for mitigating invasive plant impacts threat- ens specific sections of the functional and phylogenetic diversity of butterflies.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Institute of Evolutionary Biology and Environmental Studies
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
590 Animals (Zoology)
Uncontrolled Keywords:biological invasions, black listed species, functional diversity, invasion impacts, land use, phylogenetic diversity
Language:English
Date:10 January 2017
Deposited On:11 Sep 2017 15:16
Last Modified:12 Sep 2017 07:58
Publisher:Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, Inc.
ISSN:1366-9516
Funders:L.G. acknowledges support from the FORREG Project (FOEN/WSL), and N.E.Z. acknowledges support from the Swiss National Science Foundation (grant 31003A_149508/1), Funding to F.A. is from the Swiss National Science Foundation Grant PP00P3_150698.
Additional Information:This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Gallien, L., Altermatt, F., Wiemers, M., Schweiger, O. and Zimmermann, N. E. (2017), Invasive plants threaten the least mobile butterflies in Switzerland. Diversity Distrib., 23: 185–195. which has been published in final form at http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/ddi.12513/full
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1111/ddi.12513

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Language: English
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Embargo till: 2018-01-10