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Foundational concept of ecology tested by experiment
Date:6/22/2012

ed from the eggs altered the diversity of the zooplankton communities in the ponds.

In an unexpected turn, flowering loosestrife actually increased zooplankton species richness, perhaps, speculates Smith, because they preferentially ate a dominant zooplankton species, releasing others from competition.

"To be honest," Smith says, "although the increase in zooplankton diversity is interesting and surprising, I don't think that specific detail matters too much. Nor, is the point simply that purple loosestrife might be affecting aquatic ecosystems, although that is important from a management perspective.

"What matters is that we showed the interconnections are actually strong enough to transmit disturbances through and across webs. We pushed on one link and something four links away in another ecosystem moved."


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Contact: Diana Lutz
dlutz@wustl.edu
314-935-5272
Washington University in St. Louis
Source:Eurekalert  

Page: 1 2 3 4

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