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      The robustness and restoration of a network of ecological networks.

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          Abstract

          Understanding species' interactions and the robustness of interaction networks to species loss is essential to understand the effects of species' declines and extinctions. In most studies, different types of networks (such as food webs, parasitoid webs, seed dispersal networks, and pollination networks) have been studied separately. We sampled such multiple networks simultaneously in an agroecosystem. We show that the networks varied in their robustness; networks including pollinators appeared to be particularly fragile. We show that, overall, networks did not strongly covary in their robustness, which suggests that ecological restoration (for example, through agri-environment schemes) benefitting one functional group will not inevitably benefit others. Some individual plant species were disproportionately well linked to many other species. This type of information can be used in restoration management, because it identifies the plant taxa that can potentially lead to disproportionate gains in biodiversity.

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          Science
          Science (New York, N.Y.)
          American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)
          1095-9203
          0036-8075
          Feb 24 2012
          : 335
          : 6071
          Affiliations
          [1 ] School of Biological Sciences, University of Bristol, Woodland Road, Bristol BS8 1UG, UK. michael.pocock@ceh.ac.uk
          Article
          335/6071/973
          10.1126/science.1214915
          22363009
          13e77a16-aa3e-4879-b045-aafe13ad41a3
          History

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