Publication Details

Category Text Publication
Reference Category Journals
DOI 10.1016/j.baae.2009.06.006
Title (Primary) Variability in leaf traits, insect herbivory and herbivore performance within and among individuals of four broad-leaved tree species
Author Ruhnke, H.; Sch├Ądler, M.; Klotz, S.; Matthies, D.; Brandl, R.
Journal Basic and Applied Ecology
Year 2009
Department BZF
Volume 10
Issue 8
Page From 726
Page To 736
Language englisch
Keywords Adaptive deme formation; Broad-leaved trees; Canopy; Insect herbivory; Intraspecific variability; Palatability; Resource heterogeneity
Abstract Individual plants may vary in their suitability as hosts for insect herbivores. The adaptive deme formation hypothesis predicts that this variability will lead to the fine-scale adaptation of herbivorous insects to host individuals. We studied individual and temporal variation in the quality of leaves of the tree species ash, lime, common oak, and sycamore in the field as food for herbivores. We determined herbivore attack and leaf consumption and performance of the generalist caterpillars of Spodoptera littoralis in the laboratory. We further assessed the concentrations of carbon, nitrogen and water in the leaves.All measures of leaf tissue quality varied among and within individuals for all tree species. The level of herbivory differed among the tree individuals in lime, oak and sycamore, but not in ash. Within host individuals, differences in herbivory between the upper and lower crown layer varied in direction and magnitude depending on tree species. In feeding experiments, herbivore performance also varied among and within tree individuals. However, variation in palatability was not consistently related to the leaf traits measured or to herbivory levels in the field. The ranking of individuals with respect to the quality of leaf tissue for herbivorous insects varied between years in lime and oak. Thus, trees of both species might present moving targets for herbivores which prevents fine-scale adaptations. In contrast, among individuals of ash and sycamore the pattern of insect performance remained constant over 2 years. These species may be more suitable hosts for the formation of adapted demes in herbivores.
Persistent UFZ Identifier https://www.ufz.de/index.php?en=20939&ufzPublicationIdentifier=548
Ruhnke, H., Sch├Ądler, M., Klotz, S., Matthies, D., Brandl, R. (2009):
Variability in leaf traits, insect herbivory and herbivore performance within and among individuals of four broad-leaved tree species
Basic Appl. Ecol. 10 (8), 726 - 736