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Herbivory may mediate the effects of nutrients on the dominance of alien plants

Herbivory may mediate the effects of nutrients on the dominance of alien plants

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LI, Yanjun, Yingzhi GAO, Mark VAN KLEUNEN, Yanjie LIU, 2022. Herbivory may mediate the effects of nutrients on the dominance of alien plants. In: Functional Ecology. Wiley. 36(5), pp. 1292-1302. ISSN 0269-8463. eISSN 1365-2435. Available under: doi: 10.1111/1365-2435.14019

@article{Li2022-05Herbi-56781, title={Herbivory may mediate the effects of nutrients on the dominance of alien plants}, year={2022}, doi={10.1111/1365-2435.14019}, number={5}, volume={36}, issn={0269-8463}, journal={Functional Ecology}, pages={1292--1302}, author={Li, Yanjun and Gao, Yingzhi and van Kleunen, Mark and Liu, Yanjie} }

Liu, Yanjie Gao, Yingzhi van Kleunen, Mark van Kleunen, Mark Gao, Yingzhi Li, Yanjun Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International 1. Numerous studies have highlighted the roles of nutrient availability and fluctuations therein for invasion success of alien plants. Many others also highlighted the role of herbivores in invasion success. However, how herbivory and the level and fluctuations in nutrient availability interact in driving alien plant invasion into native communities remains largely unexplored.<br /><br />2. We grew eight invasive alien species as target species in pot-mesocosms with five different synthetic native communities in a three-factorial design with two levels of nutrient availability (low vs. high), two levels of nutrient fluctuation (constant vs. pulsed) and two levels of above-ground insect herbivory (with vs. without herbivores). As natural communities have both specialist and generalist herbivores, we simulated this using both a generalist and a specialist herbivorous grasshopper.<br /><br />3. The relative biomass production of the alien target plants to the total biomass production (i.e. alien biomass/total biomass) decreased in response to an increase in nutrient availability, but increased in response to the presence of herbivores. Furthermore, we found indications that the dominance of the alien target species may depend on interactions of herbivory with changes in nutrient availability and nutrient fluctuations, although these interactions were only marginally significant.<br /><br />4. Our multi-trophic multi-species experiment suggests that herbivory could mediate the interactive effect of nutrient enrichment and variability in nutrient supply on invasion of alien plants into native communities. Therefore, we recommend that studies testing the effects of resources on plant invasion should also consider interactive effects of other trophic levels. Liu, Yanjie 2022-03-09T08:41:28Z Herbivory may mediate the effects of nutrients on the dominance of alien plants 2022-03-09T08:41:28Z eng Li, Yanjun 2022-05

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