Does Land-Use Intensification Decrease Plant Phylogenetic Diversity in Local Grasslands?

Egorov, Eugen; Prati, Daniel; Durka, Walter; Michalski, Stefan; Fischer, Markus; Schmitt, Barbara; Blaser, Stefan; Braendle, Martin (2014). Does Land-Use Intensification Decrease Plant Phylogenetic Diversity in Local Grasslands? PLoS ONE, 9(7), e103252. 1160 BATTERY STREET, STE 100, SAN FRANCISCO, CA 94111 USA: Public Library of Science 10.1371/journal.pone.0103252

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Phylogenetic diversity (PD) has been successfully used as a complement to classical measures of biological diversity such as species richness or functional diversity. By considering the phylogenetic history of species, PD broadly summarizes the trait space within a community. This covers amongst others complex physiological or biochemical traits that are often not considered in estimates of functional diversity, but may be important for the understanding of community assembly and the relationship between diversity and ecosystem functions. In this study we analyzed the relationship between PD of plant communities and land-use intensification in 150 local grassland plots in three regions in Germany. Specifically we asked whether PD decreases with land-use intensification and if so, whether the relationship is robust across different regions. Overall, we found that species richness decreased along land-use gradients the results however differed for common and rare species assemblages. PD only weakly decreased with increasing land-use intensity. The strength of the relationship thereby varied among regions and PD metrics used. From our results we suggest that there is no general relationship between PD and land-use intensification probably due to lack of phylogenetic conservatism in land- use sensitive traits. Nevertheless, we suggest that depending on specific regional idiosyncrasies the consideration of PD as a complement to other measures of diversity can be useful.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

08 Faculty of Science > Department of Biology > Institute of Plant Sciences (IPS) > Plant Ecology
08 Faculty of Science > Department of Biology > Institute of Plant Sciences (IPS)

UniBE Contributor:

Prati, Daniel; Fischer, Markus; Schmitt, Barbara and Blaser, Stefan

Subjects:

500 Science > 580 Plants (Botany)

ISSN:

1932-6203

Publisher:

Public Library of Science

Language:

English

Submitter:

Peter Alfred von Ballmoos-Haas

Date Deposited:

05 Sep 2014 11:10

Last Modified:

09 Dec 2014 18:41

Publisher DOI:

10.1371/journal.pone.0103252

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.58504

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/58504

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