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Coexistence in a size-structured intraguild predation system promoted by an ontogenetic diet shift in the consumer
Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Ecology and Environmental Sciences.
Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Ecology and Environmental Sciences.
Institute for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Dynamics, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

In life history omnivore (IGP) systems coexistence between omnivore and consumer at high productivity has only been demonstrated when the omnivore undergoes a complete ontogenetic niche shift at or before maturity from feeding on the shared resource to feeding on the consumer. Here we investigate the effects of an exclusive resource for juvenile consumers on coexistence between omnivore and consumer. We demonstrate that an alternative resource for juvenile consumers allows for coexistence between omnivore and consumer species even when the adult omnivore feeds on the shared resource to a substantial extent. Coexistence is promoted by a strong niche separation in the consumer and when the productivity of the shared resource is high relative to the juvenile consumer exclusive resource. At high shared resource productivity coexistence is promoted by either a low or a high niche separation in the omnivore. In general our results suggest that for coexistence to occur at high productivities a strong life-history separation in resource use is necessary in either the consumer or the omnivore. Strong life-history separation in the omnivore results in predation driven coexistence, while strong life-history separation in the consumer results in competitive coexistence. 

National Category
Ecology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-107027OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-107027DiVA: diva2:846480
Available from: 2015-08-17 Created: 2015-08-17 Last updated: 2015-09-02
In thesis
1. Ontogenetic bottlenecks: effects on intraguild predation systems and ecosystem efficiency
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Ontogenetic bottlenecks: effects on intraguild predation systems and ecosystem efficiency
2015 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Size-dependent differences between individuals in size-structured organisms have fundamental effect on population and community dynamics. Intraguild predation (IGP) is one specifically interesting constellation that often arises when two size-structured populations interact. Ontogenetic bottlenecks that determine population size-structure are affected by both population intrinsic as well as population extrinsic factors, and are therefore context-dependent. Surprisingly, size-structured IGP systems have mainly been investigated theoretically and especially long-term empirical studies are widely lacking. In this thesis I investigate empirically how habitat complexity, interaction strength, and stage-specific resource availabilities affect population processes and their effects on the dynamics of a size-structured IGP system. I conducted multi-generation experiments in a size-structured IGP system, with the Least Killifish (Heterandria formosa) as IG prey and the Common Guppy (Poecilia reticulata) as IG predator. With no alternative resource next to the shared resource, IG predator and IG prey could not coexist. Weak interactions only increased IG prey and IG predator persistence times and observed exclusion patterns depended on habitat complexity. An alternative resource for either the juvenile IG predator or the juvenile IG prey on the other hand promoted coexistence. However, this coexistence was context-dependent. Ontogenetic bottlenecks played a central role in the dynamics of the size-structured IGP system in general. In the final study I show that an ontogenetic bottleneck can, through changes in stage-specific resource availabilities, be affected in a way that leads to increased trophic transfer efficiency with potential effects on higher trophic levels.

Overall, the results emphasize importance of the broader context in which size-structured communities are embedded. Especially, when managing natural communities it is important to account for the combined effects of size-structure, stage-specific resource availabilities, and habitat structure. Specifically, when managing species that connect habitats or ecosystems all life-stages’ environmental conditions must be consider in order to ensure strong predictive power of tools used for ecosystem management planning.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Umeå: Umeå University, 2015. 29 p.
Keyword
mixed interactions, cannibalism, life-history omnivory, ontogenetic niche shift, biomass overcompensation, biomass production, ontogenetic asymmetry, indirect effects
National Category
Ecology
Research subject
biology; Animal Ecology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-105759 (URN)978-91-7601-299-4 (ISBN)
Public defence
2015-09-25, Lilla hörsalen (KB3A9), KBC-huset, Linnaeus väg 6, Umeå, 14:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2015-09-04 Created: 2015-06-29 Last updated: 2015-09-02Bibliographically approved

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Reichstein, BirtePersson, Lennart

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