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title Nonlinearities Lead to Qualitative Differences in Population Dynamics of Predator-Prey Systems
authors Ameixa, OMCC; Messelink, GJ; Kindlmann, P
author full name Ameixa, Olga M. C. C.; Messelink, Gerben J.; Kindlmann, Pavel
title Nonlinearities Lead to Qualitative Differences in Population Dynamics of Predator-Prey Systems
nationality nacional
source PLOS ONE
language English
document type Article
abstract Since typically there are many predators feeding on most herbivores in natural communities, understanding multiple predator effects is critical for both community and applied ecology. Experiments of multiple predator effects on prey populations are extremely demanding, as the number of treatments and the amount of labour associated with these experiments increases exponentially with the number of species in question. Therefore, researchers tend to vary only presence/absence of the species and use only one (supposedly realistic) combination of their numbers in experiments. However, nonlinearities in density dependence, functional responses, interactions between natural enemies etc. are typical for such systems, and nonlinear models of population dynamics generally predict qualitatively different results, if initial absolute densities of the species studied differ, even if their relative densities are maintained. Therefore, testing combinations of natural enemies without varying their densities may not be sufficient. Here we test this prediction experimentally. We show that the population dynamics of a system consisting of 2 natural enemies (aphid predator Adalia bipunctata (L.), and aphid parasitoid, Aphidius colemani Viereck) and their shared prey (peach aphid, Myzus persicae Sulzer) are strongly affected by the absolute initial densities of the species in question. Even if their relative densities are kept constant, the natural enemy species or combination thereof that most effectively suppresses the prey may depend on the absolute initial densities used in the experiment. Future empirical studies of multiple predator - one prey interactions should therefore use a two-dimensional array of initial densities of the studied species. Varying only combinations of natural enemies without varying their densities is not sufficient and can lead to misleading results.
author address [Ameixa, Olga M. C. C.; Kindlmann, Pavel] Global Change Res Ctr, Dept Biodivers Res, Ceske Budejovice, Czech Republic; [Messelink, Gerben J.] Wageningen UR Greenhouse Hort, Bleiswijk, Netherlands; [Kindlmann, Pavel] Charles Univ Prague, Inst Environm Studies, Prague, Czech Republic
reprint address Ameixa, OMCC (reprint author), Global Change Res Ctr, Dept Biodivers Res, Ceske Budejovice, Czech Republic.
e-mail address olgameixa@portugalmail.pt
researcherid number Ameixa, Olga/E-2297-2011; Kindlmann, Pavel/H-7718-2014
orcid number Ameixa, Olga/0000-0002-5422-1090;
funding agency and grant number Wageningen UR Greenhouse Horticulture; GA CR [GEVOL/11/E036]; MSMT [CZ.1.05/1.1.00/02.0073]
funding text The research was supported by Wageningen UR Greenhouse Horticulture and by grants No. GEVOL/11/E036 of the GA CR and CZ.1.05/1.1.00/02.0073 (CzechGlobe) of the MSMT. The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.
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cited reference count 58
times cited 1
total times cited count (wos, bci, and cscd) 1
publisher city SAN FRANCISCO
publisher address 1160 BATTERY STREET, STE 100, SAN FRANCISCO, CA 94111 USA
issn 1932-6203
29-character source abbreviation PLOS ONE
iso source abbreviation PLoS One
publication date APR 25
year published 2013
volume 8
issue 4
article number e62530
digital object identifier (doi) 10.1371/journal.pone.0062530
page count 9
web of science category Multidisciplinary Sciences
subject category Science & Technology - Other Topics
document delivery number 136DM
unique article identifier WOS:000318341400058
CESAM authors