A comparative analysis of metacommunity types in the freshwater realm

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http://hdl.handle.net/10138/162260

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Heino , J , Soininen , J , Alahuhta , J , Lappalainen , J & Virtanen , R 2015 , ' A comparative analysis of metacommunity types in the freshwater realm ' , Ecology and Evolution , vol. 5 , no. 7 , pp. 1525-1537 . https://doi.org/10.1002/ece3.1460

Title: A comparative analysis of metacommunity types in the freshwater realm
Author: Heino, Jani; Soininen, Janne; Alahuhta, Janne; Lappalainen, Jyrki; Virtanen, Risto
Contributor: University of Helsinki, Department of Geosciences and Geography
University of Helsinki, Environmental Sciences
University of Helsinki, University of Oulu
Date: 2015-04
Language: eng
Number of pages: 13
Belongs to series: Ecology and Evolution
ISSN: 2045-7758
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10138/162260
Abstract: Most metacommunity studies have taken a direct mechanistic approach, aiming to model the effects of local and regional processes on local communities within a metacommunity. An alternative approach is to focus on emergent patterns at the metacommunity level through applying the elements of metacommunity structure (EMS; Oikos, 97, 2002, 237) analysis. The EMS approach has very rarely been applied in the context of a comparative analysis of metacommunity types of main microbial, plant, and animal groups. Furthermore, to our knowledge, no study has associated metacommunity types with their potential ecological correlates in the freshwater realm. We assembled data for 45 freshwater metacommunities, incorporating biologically highly disparate organismal groups (i.e., bacteria, algae, macrophytes, invertebrates, and fish). We first examined ecological correlates (e.g., matrix properties, beta diversity, and average characteristics of a metacommunity, including body size, trophic group, ecosystem type, life form, and dispersal mode) of the three elements of metacommunity structure (i.e., coherence, turnover, and boundary clumping). Second, based on those three elements, we determined which metacommunity types prevailed in freshwater systems and which ecological correlates best discriminated among the observed metacommunity types. We found that the three elements of metacommunity structure were not strongly related to the ecological correlates, except that turnover was positively related to beta diversity. We observed six metacommunity types. The most common were Clementsian and quasi-nested metacommunity types, whereas Random, quasi-Clementsian, Gleasonian, and quasi-Gleasonian types were less common. These six metacommunity types were best discriminated by beta diversity and the first axis of metacommunity ecological traits, ranging from metacommunities of producer organisms occurring in streams to those of large predatory organisms occurring in lakes. Our results showed that focusing on the emergent properties of multiple metacommunities provides information additional to that obtained in studies examining variation in local community structure within a metacommunity.
Subject: Algae
invertebrates
lakes
macrophytes
metacommunity
multigroup analysis
streams
MACROECOLOGICAL PERSPECTIVE
SPECIES DISTRIBUTIONS
DISTRIBUTION PATTERNS
ECOLOGICAL COMMUNITY
LOCAL ABUNDANCE
STREAM INSECTS
BOREAL STREAMS
ASSEMBLY RULES
BETA-DIVERSITY
R PACKAGE
1181 Ecology, evolutionary biology
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