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dc.contributor.authorEmery, Kyle A.
dc.contributor.authorDugan, Jenifer E.
dc.contributor.authorBailey, R. A.
dc.contributor.authorMiller, Robert J.
dc.identifier.citationEmery , K A , Dugan , J E , Bailey , R A & Miller , R J 2021 , ' Species identity drives ecosystem function in a subsidy-dependent coastal ecosystem ' , Oecologia , vol. 196 , pp. 1195-1206 .
dc.identifier.otherPURE: 275294791
dc.identifier.otherPURE UUID: 458ef344-5995-4c76-b3ad-90f567d67817
dc.identifier.otherRIS: urn:E5B74CC5438C418DDECFCE942AA22EF7
dc.identifier.otherRIS: Emery2021
dc.identifier.otherORCID: /0000-0002-8990-2099/work/98196985
dc.identifier.otherScopus: 85111546049
dc.identifier.otherWOS: 000679276200002
dc.descriptionThis study was supported by Grants from the US National Science Foundation including OCE 1458845 and the Santa Barbara Coastal Long-Term Ecological Research project (OCE 1232779, OCE 1831937).en
dc.description.abstractDeclines in species diversity carry profound implications for ecosystem functioning. Communities of primary producers and consumers interact on evolutionary as well as ecological time scales, shaping complex relationships between biodiversity and ecosystem functioning. In subsidized ecosystems, resource inputs are independent of consumer actions, offering a simplified view of the relationship between species diversity and function for higher trophic levels. With food webs supported by substantial but variable inputs of detritus from adjacent marine ecosystems, sandy beaches are classic examples of subsidized ecosystems. We investigated effects of consumer species diversity and identity on a key ecological function, consumption of kelp wrack from nearshore giant kelp (Macrocystis pyrifera) forests. We assessed effects of species richness on kelp consumption by experimentally manipulating richness of six common species of invertebrate detritivores in laboratory mesocosms and conducting field assays of kelp consumption on beaches. Consumer richness had no effect on kelp consumption in the field and a slight negative effect in laboratory experiments. Kelp consumption was most strongly affected by the species composition of the detritivore community. Species identity and body size of intertidal detritivores drove variation in kelp consumption rates in both experiments and field assays. Our results provide further evidence that species traits, rather than richness per se, influence ecosystem function most, particularly in detrital-based food webs with high functional redundancy across species. On sandy beaches, where biodiversity is threatened by rising sea levels and expanding development, our findings suggest that loss of large-bodied consumer species could disproportionally impact ecosystem function.
dc.rightsCopyright © The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2021. This work has been made available online in accordance with publisher policies or with permission. Permission for further reuse of this content should be sought from the publisher or the rights holder. This is the author created accepted manuscript following peer review and may differ slightly from the final published version. The final published version of this work is available at
dc.subjectGeneralist consumersen
dc.subjectBody sizeen
dc.subjectDetrital subsidiesen
dc.subjectSandy beachen
dc.subjectGE Environmental Sciencesen
dc.titleSpecies identity drives ecosystem function in a subsidy-dependent coastal ecosystemen
dc.typeJournal articleen
dc.contributor.institutionUniversity of St Andrews. Statisticsen
dc.contributor.institutionUniversity of St Andrews. Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in Computational Algebraen
dc.description.statusPeer revieweden

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