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Understanding and planning ecological restoration of plant–pollinator networks

Published on Apr 1, 2012in Ecology Letters8.699
· DOI :10.1111/j.1461-0248.2012.01740.x
Mariano Devoto12
Estimated H-index: 12
(UoB: University of Bristol),
Sallie Bailey8
Estimated H-index: 8
(Forestry Commission)
+ 1 AuthorsJane Memmott47
Estimated H-index: 47
(UoB: University of Bristol)
Abstract
Ecology Letters (2012) 15: 319–328 Abstract Theory developed from studying changes in the structure and function of communities during natural or managed succession can guide the restoration of particular communities. We constructed 30 quantitative plant–flower visitor networks along a managed successional gradient to identify the main drivers of change in network structure. We then applied two alternative restoration strategies in silico (restoring for functional complementarity or redundancy) to data from our early successional plots to examine whether different strategies affected the restoration trajectories. Changes in network structure were explained by a combination of age, tree density and variation in tree diameter, even when variance explained by undergrowth structure was accounted for first. A combination of field data, a network approach and numerical simulations helped to identify which species should be given restoration priority in the context of different restoration targets. This combined approach provides a powerful tool for directing management decisions, particularly when management seeks to restore or conserve ecosystem function.
  • References (39)
  • Citations (73)
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References39
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Summary 1. The study of plant–pollinator interactions in a network context is receiving increasing attention. This approach has helped to identify several emerging network patterns such as nestedness and modularity. However, most studies are based only on qualitative information, and some ecosystems, such as deserts and tropical forests, are underrepresented in these data sets. 2. We present an exhaustive analysis of the structure of a 4-year plant–pollinator network from the Monte desert in Arg...
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#1Katherine C. R. Baldock (Edin.: University of Edinburgh)H-Index: 12
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Ecological interaction networks are a valuable approach to understanding plant–pollinator interactions at the community level. Highly structured daily activity patterns are a feature of the biology of many flower visitors, particularly provisioning female bees, which often visit different floral sources at different times. Such temporal structure implies that presence/absence and relative abundance of specific flower–visitor interactions (links) in interaction networks may be highly sensitive to...
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