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Title (Primary) Food web structure and biocontrol in a four-trophic level system across a landscape complexity gradient
Author Gagic, V.; Tscharntke, T.; Dormann, C.F.; Gruber, B.; Wilstermann, A.; Thies, C.;
Journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B-Biological Sciences
Year 2011
Department CLE;
Volume 278
Issue 1720
Language englisch;
Keywords food webs; biological control; landscape complexity; parasitoids; hyperparasitoids
Abstract Decline in landscape complexity owing to agricultural intensification may affect biodiversity, food web complexity and associated ecological processes such as biological control, but such relationships are poorly understood. Here, we analysed food webs of cereal aphids, their primary parasitoids and hyperparasitoids in 18 agricultural landscapes differing in structural complexity (42-93% arable land). Despite little variation in the richness of each trophic group, we found considerable changes in trophic link properties across the landscape complexity gradient. Unexpectedly, aphid-parasitoid food webs exhibited a lower complexity (lower linkage density, interaction diversity and generality) in structurally complex landscapes, which was related to the dominance of one aphid species in complex landscapes. Nevertheless, primary parasitism, as well as hyperparasitism, was higher in complex landscapes, with primary parasitism reaching levels for potentially successful biological control. In conclusion, landscape complexity appeared to foster higher parasitism rates, but simpler food webs, thereby casting doubt on the general importance of food web complexity for ecosystem functioning.
ID 10902
Persistent UFZ Identifier https://www.ufz.de/index.php?en=20939&ufzPublicationIdentifier=10902
Gagic, V., Tscharntke, T., Dormann, C.F., Gruber, B., Wilstermann, A., Thies, C. (2011):
Food web structure and biocontrol in a four-trophic level system across a landscape complexity gradient
Proc. R. Soc. B-Biol. Sci. 278 (1720), 2946 - 2953