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Synchrony matters more than species richness in plant community stability at a global scale

Title data

Valencia, Enrique ; de Bello, Francesco ; Galland, Thomas ; Adler, Peter B. ; Lepš, Jan ; E-Vojtkó, Anna ; van Klink, Roel ; Carmona, Carlos P. ; Danihelka, Jiří ; Dengler, Jürgen ; Eldridge, David J. ; Estiarte, Marc ; García-González, Ricardo ; Garnier, Eric ; Gómez‐García, Daniel ; Harrison, Susan P. ; Herben, Tomáš ; Ibáñez, Ricardo ; Jentsch, Anke ; Juergens, Norbert ; Kertész, Miklós ; Klumpp, Katja ; Louault, Frédérique ; Marrs, Rob H. ; Ogaya, Romà ; Ónodi, Gábor ; Pakeman, Robin J. ; Pardo, Iker ; Pärtel, Meelis ; Peco, Begoña ; Peñuelas, Josep ; Pywell, Richard F. ; Rueda, Marta ; Schmidt, Wolfgang ; Schmiedel, Ute ; Schuetz, Martin ; Skálová, Hana ; Šmilauer, Petr ; Šmilauerová, Marie ; Smit, Christian ; Song, MingHua ; Stock, Martin ; Val, James ; Vandvik, Vigdis ; Ward, David ; Wesche, Karsten ; Wiser, Susan K. ; Woodcock, Ben A. ; Youny, Truman P. ; Yu, Fei-Hai ; Zobel, Martin ; Götzenberger, Lars:
Synchrony matters more than species richness in plant community stability at a global scale.
In: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. Vol. 117 (29 September 2020) Issue 39 . - pp. 24345-24351.
ISSN 1091-6490
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1920405117

Abstract in another language

The stability of ecological communities under ongoing climate and land-use change is fundamental to the sustainable management of natural resources through its effect on critical ecosystem services. Biodiversity is hypothesized to enhance stability through compensatory effects (decreased synchrony between species). However, the relative importance and interplay between different biotic and abiotic drivers of stability remain controversial. By analyzing long-term data from natural and seminatural ecosystems across the globe, we found that the degree of synchrony among dominant species was the main driver of stability, rather than species richness per se. These biotic effects overrode environmental drivers, which influenced the stability of communities by modulating the effects of richness and synchrony.The stability of ecological communities is critical for the stable provisioning of ecosystem services, such as food and forage production, carbon sequestration, and soil fertility. Greater biodiversity is expected to enhance stability across years by decreasing synchrony among species, but the drivers of stability in nature remain poorly resolved. Our analysis of time series from 79 datasets across the world showed that stability was associated more strongly with the degree of synchrony among dominant species than with species richness. The relatively weak influence of species richness is consistent with theory predicting that the effect of richness on stability weakens when synchrony is higher than expected under random fluctuations, which was the case in most communities. Land management, nutrient addition, and climate change treatments had relatively weak and varying effects on stability, modifying how species richness, synchrony, and stability interact. Our results demonstrate the prevalence of biotic drivers on ecosystem stability, with the potential for environmental drivers to alter the intricate relationship among richness, synchrony, and stability.

Further data

Item Type: Article in a journal
Refereed: Yes
Institutions of the University: Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences > Department of Earth Sciences > Professor Disturbance Ecology
Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences > Department of Earth Sciences > Professor Disturbance Ecology > Professor Disturbance Ecology - Univ.-Prof. Dr. Anke Jentsch
Research Institutions > Research Centres > Bayreuth Center of Ecology and Environmental Research- BayCEER
Result of work at the UBT: Yes
DDC Subjects: 500 Science
Date Deposited: 08 Oct 2020 12:13
Last Modified: 08 Oct 2020 12:13
URI: https://eref.uni-bayreuth.de/id/eprint/57876