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      Biogeographical comparison of terrestrial invertebrates and trophic feeding guilds in the native and invasive ranges of Carpobrotus edulis

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      NeoBiota

      Pensoft Publishers

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          Abstract

          Plant invasions impact on biodiversity by altering the composition of native communities by disrupting taxonomic and functional diversity. Non-native plants are often released from their natural enemies, which might result in a reduction of the attack of primary consumers. However, they can also be exposed to the attack of new herbivores that they might not be able to tolerate. Hence, invertebrate communities can be influenced by invasive non-native plants, which in turn modify interactions and change environmental conditions. In this study, we examined the compositional and trophic diversity of invertebrate species, comparing ecosystems with and without the plant species Carpobrotus edulis in coastal areas in its native (South Africa) and introduced (Iberian Peninsula) ranges. Results show that C. edulis has a clear impact on invertebrate communities in its non-native range, reducing their abundance in invaded areas, and particularly affecting certain trophic groups. Invasive C. edulis also alters the invertebrate diversity by not only reducing abundance but also by altering species composition. Overall, the physical dominance of C. edulis modifies the co-occurrence of invertebrate assemblages, reducing the number of trophic groups and leading to substantial effects on primary consumers. Results suggest that the lack of natural enemies might be an important driver of the expansion of C. edulis in its introduced range. Further work is needed to examine long-term changes caused by non-native plants on invertebrate assemblages and the subsequent modification of biological interactions.

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          Quantifying biodiversity: procedures and pitfalls in the measurement and comparison of species richness

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            High plant diversity is needed to maintain ecosystem services.

            Biodiversity is rapidly declining worldwide, and there is consensus that this can decrease ecosystem functioning and services. It remains unclear, though, whether few or many of the species in an ecosystem are needed to sustain the provisioning of ecosystem services. It has been hypothesized that most species would promote ecosystem services if many times, places, functions and environmental changes were considered; however, no previous study has considered all of these factors together. Here we show that 84% of the 147 grassland plant species studied in 17 biodiversity experiments promoted ecosystem functioning at least once. Different species promoted ecosystem functioning during different years, at different places, for different functions and under different environmental change scenarios. Furthermore, the species needed to provide one function during multiple years were not the same as those needed to provide multiple functions within one year. Our results indicate that even more species will be needed to maintain ecosystem functioning and services than previously suggested by studies that have either (1) considered only the number of species needed to promote one function under one set of environmental conditions, or (2) separately considered the importance of biodiversity for providing ecosystem functioning across multiple years, places, functions or environmental change scenarios. Therefore, although species may appear functionally redundant when one function is considered under one set of environmental conditions, many species are needed to maintain multiple functions at multiple times and places in a changing world.
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              Riparian vegetation: degradation, alien plant invasions, and restoration prospects

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                Author and article information

                Journal
                NeoBiota
                NB
                Pensoft Publishers
                1314-2488
                1619-0033
                May 14 2020
                May 14 2020
                : 56
                : 49-72
                Article
                10.3897/neobiota.56.49087
                © 2020

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