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Parasitism and Ecosystems$
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Frédéric Thomas, François Renaud, and Jean-François Guegan

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780198529873

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198529873.001.0001

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Linking ecosystem and parasite ecology

Linking ecosystem and parasite ecology

Chapter:
(p.13) CHAPTER 1 Linking ecosystem and parasite ecology
Source:
Parasitism and Ecosystems
Author(s):

Michel Loreau

Jacques Roy

David Tilman

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198529873.003.0002

Community ecology and ecosystem ecology provide different perspectives on ecological systems, and have followed increasingly divergent pathways for decades. Recent theoretical and experimental work has begun to integrate these perspectives and provides new light on how species and ecosystems are mutually interdependent. A number of experiments and models have shown that species diversity affects ecosystem functioning through either selection of appropriate dominant species or complementarity among species with different traits. Although particular species may have a large functional impact only at small scales, some hypotheses and experimental evidence suggest that species diversity may also be critical at large temporal and spatial scales. These conclusions, however, have been obtained in relatively simple systems. A major future challenge is to extend this knowledge to full ecosystems with multiple trophic levels and multiple processes, and to determine how biodiversity dynamics, ecosystem processes, and abiotic factors interact.

Keywords:   species diversity, parasitism, temporal scale, spatial scale, functional ecology

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