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How trophic interaction strength depends on traits: A conceptual framework for representing multidimensional trophic niche spaces
Queen’s University Belfast School of Biological Sciences Belfast BT9 7BL Northern Ireland UK. (International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA) Evolution and Ecology Program Schlossplatz 1 2361 Laxenburg Austria)
Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Mathematics and Mathematical Statistics. (International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA) Evolution and Ecology Program Schlossplatz 1 2361 Laxenburg Austria)
International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA) Evolution and Ecology Program Schlossplatz 1 2361 Laxenburg Austria.
2010 (English)In: Theoretical Ecology, ISSN 1874-1738 (Print) 1874-1746 (Online), Vol. 3, no 1, 13-24 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

A key problem in community ecology is to understand how individual-level traits give rise to population-level trophic interactions. Here, we propose a synthetic framework based on ecological considerations to address this question systematically. We derive a general functional form for the dependence of trophic interaction coefficients on trophically relevant quantitative traits of consumers and resources. The derived expression encompasses—and thus allows a unified comparison of—several functional forms previously proposed in the literature. Furthermore, we show how a community’s, potentially low-dimens ional, effective trophic niche space is related to its higher-dimensional phenotypic trait space. In this manner, we give ecological meaning to the notion of the “dimensionality of trophic niche space.” Our framework implies a method for directly measuring this dimensionality. We suggest a procedure for estimating the relevant parameters from empirical data and for verifying that such data matches the assumptions underlying our derivation.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer Netrherlands , 2010. Vol. 3, no 1, 13-24 p.
Keyword [en]
Food webs, Niche space, Interaction strength, Evolution
National Category
Other Mathematics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-50104DOI: 10.1007/s12080-009-0049-1ISI: 000274253300002OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-50104DiVA: diva2:459590
Available from: 2011-11-26 Created: 2011-11-26 Last updated: 2011-11-28Bibliographically approved

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Brännström, Åke

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CiteExportLink to record
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