Header

UZH-Logo

Maintenance Infos

Removing subordinate species in a biodiversity experiment to mimic observational field studies


Schmid, Bernhard; Schmitz, Martin; Rzanny, Michael; Scherer‐Lorenzen, Michael; Mwangi, Peter N; Weisser, Wolfgang W; Hector, Andrew; Schmid, Roland; Flynn, Dan F B (2022). Removing subordinate species in a biodiversity experiment to mimic observational field studies. Grassland Research, 1(1):53-62.

Abstract

Background: Positive effects of plant species richness on community biomass in biodiversity experiments are often stronger than those from observational field studies. This may be because experiments are initiated with randomly
assembled species compositions whereas field communities have experienced filtering.
Methods: We compared aboveground biomass production of randomly assembled communities of 2–16 species (controls) with experimentally filtered communities from which subordinate species were removed, resulting in
removal communities of 1–8 species.
Results: Removal communities had (1) 12.6% higher biomass than control communities from which they were derived, that is, with double species richness and (2) 32.0% higher biomass than control communities of equal richness. These differences were maintained along the richness gradient. The increased productivity of removal communities was paralleled by increased species evenness and complementarity.
Conclusions: Result (1) indicates that subordinate species can reduce community biomass production, suggesting a possible explanation for why the most diverse field communities sometimes do not have the highest productivity. Result (2) suggests that if a community of S species has been derived by filtering from a pool of 2S randomly chosen species it is more productive than a community derived from a pool of S randomly chosen species without filtering.

Abstract

Background: Positive effects of plant species richness on community biomass in biodiversity experiments are often stronger than those from observational field studies. This may be because experiments are initiated with randomly
assembled species compositions whereas field communities have experienced filtering.
Methods: We compared aboveground biomass production of randomly assembled communities of 2–16 species (controls) with experimentally filtered communities from which subordinate species were removed, resulting in
removal communities of 1–8 species.
Results: Removal communities had (1) 12.6% higher biomass than control communities from which they were derived, that is, with double species richness and (2) 32.0% higher biomass than control communities of equal richness. These differences were maintained along the richness gradient. The increased productivity of removal communities was paralleled by increased species evenness and complementarity.
Conclusions: Result (1) indicates that subordinate species can reduce community biomass production, suggesting a possible explanation for why the most diverse field communities sometimes do not have the highest productivity. Result (2) suggests that if a community of S species has been derived by filtering from a pool of 2S randomly chosen species it is more productive than a community derived from a pool of S randomly chosen species without filtering.

Statistics

Citations

Dimensions.ai Metrics

Altmetrics

Downloads

35 downloads since deposited on 23 Dec 2022
23 downloads since 12 months
Detailed statistics

Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Institute of Geography
Dewey Decimal Classification:910 Geography & travel
Language:English
Date:1 March 2022
Deposited On:23 Dec 2022 10:48
Last Modified:26 Mar 2024 04:31
Publisher:Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, Inc.
ISSN:2770-1743
OA Status:Gold
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1002/glr2.12009
  • Content: Published Version
  • Language: English
  • Licence: Creative Commons: Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)