Sites in New Zealand and Switzerland, for example, were similar in species composition, sharing--in some cases--more than 10 species, all with similar abundances.
The results are the first to be published from the Nutrient Network.
The Nutrient Network is led by individual researchers at the various sites, and coordinated through NSF funding to biologists Elizabeth Borer and Eric Seabloom of the University of Minnesota.
"The Nutrient Network is the only collaboration of its kind where individual researchers have set up the same experiment at sites around the world," says Borer.
For three years scientists have been collecting population, community and ecosystem-scale plant data, including species-specific distribution and abundance data, with standardized protocols across dozens of sites.
"The experimental design used is simple," says Borer, "but it's one that provides a new, global-scale approach for addressing many critical ecological issues.
"It will tell us information we need to know about invasive species and changing climates."
|Contact: Cheryl Dybas|
National Science Foundation