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Journal Articles Ecology Letters Year : 2011

The ecological and evolutionary implications of merging different types of networks

Paulo R. Guimarães Jr
  • Function : Author
Sonia Kéfi
Nicolas Loeuille
Jane Memmott
  • Function : Author
Wim H. van Der Putten
  • Function : Author
Frank J. F. van Veen
  • Function : Author

Abstract

Interactions among species drive the ecological and evolutionary processes in ecological communities. These interactions are effectively key components of biodiversity. Studies that use a network approach to study the structure and dynamics of communities of interacting species have revealed many patterns and associated processes. Historically these studies were restricted to trophic interactions, although network approaches are now used to study a wide range of interactions, including for example the reproductive mutualisms. However, each interaction type remains studied largely in isolation from others. Merging the various interaction types within a single integrative framework is necessary if we want to further our understanding of the ecological and evolutionary dynamics of communities. Dividing the networks up is a methodological convenience as in the field the networks occur together in space and time and will be linked by shared species. Herein, we outline a conceptual framework for studying networks composed of more than one type of interaction, highlighting key questions and research areas that would benefit from their study.

Dates and versions

bioemco-00644662 , version 1 (24-11-2011)

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Colin Fontaine, Paulo R. Guimarães Jr, Sonia Kéfi, Nicolas Loeuille, Jane Memmott, et al.. The ecological and evolutionary implications of merging different types of networks. Ecology Letters, 2011, 14 (11), pp.1170-1181. ⟨10.1111/j.1461-0248.2011.01688.x⟩. ⟨bioemco-00644662⟩
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