Diversity and productivity relationship

diversity and productivity relationship

Exactly how biodiversity relates to ecosystem function and productivity, a range of topics that are germane to the productivity-diversity relationship in a. Here we show that the diversity–productivity relationship of phytoplankton in a global self-assembling ocean ecosystem model depends on the. The relationship between diversity and productivity can be altered, however, by changes in geographic and ecological scale (Wrightet al., ; Waideet al.

However, many other responses of diversity to productivity gradients can also be found in the ecological literature Abrams, ; Mittelbachet al. The relationship between diversity and productivity can be altered, however, by changes in geographic and ecological scale Wrightet al.

The shape of this relationship may also be sensitive to the measure of biological diversity that is being analyzed e. Diversity—productivity relationships in aquatic microbial communities A critically important question in microbial ecology is the degree to which the ecological behavior of microorganisms conforms to the rules that have been discovered by general ecologists. However, a large and expanding body of evidence indicates that free-living microbial taxa can indeed exhibit biogeographical patterns Dolan, ; Hughes Martinyet al.

In addition, the species—area relationship, considered to be the oldest documented diversity pattern in macroecology Rosenzweig,has recently been confirmed for phytoplankton and benthic microalgae Hillebrandet al. Finally, as illustrated in Fig.

Micro-scale relationships between microbial diversity and productivity

Rapidly accumulating evidence from the microbial ecology literature thus suggests that microorganisms indeed obey the key principles of macroecology. This hypothesis was tested by creating and analyzing a database derived from the published literature on aquatic microbial diversity.

Data acquisition and analysis The ecological literature was searched broadly in order to obtain published studies of aquatic microbial diversity—productivity relationships. The intent of this literature search was to provide examples having the widest possible geographical extent, and representing a broad range of aquatic habitats, including natural lakes, ponds, and oceans; these studies included experimental microcosms and mesocosms, as well as human-engineered systems such as wastewater treatment plants.

In a number of these studies, investigator-provided measurements of microbial diversity were reported as morphospecies richness phytoplankton and ciliates; the colony morphology of cultured microorganisms was also used to estimate microbial taxonomic richness in some cases. In a very few other studies, cytometric richness, genetic diversity, or functional diversity was measured.

However, most investigators reported microbial diversity as operational taxonomic units OTUswhich were derived using molecular approaches such as denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis DGGE or terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism T-RFLP analyses of PCR-amplified genes.

Micro-scale relationships between microbial diversity and productivity

Numerous measures of productivity were reported as well. Earlier studies, including investigations of hypersaline microbial mat systems, have profiled diversity as a function of space. But few studies have linked microbial diversity to productivity, and the relationships displayed over microbe-scale gradients remain unstudied, until now.

diversity and productivity relationship

It turns out that spatial relationships matter in surprising ways. A new paper in ISME Journal describes a photosynthetic microbial mat, cultivated in a controlled laboratory setting and used to evaluate spatial relationships between productivity and diversity.

diversity and productivity relationship

Their goal was to determine how spatial diversification of microorganisms drives localized carbon and energy acquisition rates. Spatial gradients of productivity are inherent to microbial ecosystems dependent on sunlight for energy.

After all, light is attenuated at characteristic distances related to the physical structure of the ecosystem. Benthic microbial mat systems can offer a natural testbed to explore these relationships due to inherent tight physical associations between cells and extracellular polymeric substances that strongly attenuate the light-energy that drives the ecosystem's primary productivity over short distances.

Explicit investigations of microbial diversity-productivity relationships are rarely reported. In the current study, researchers uniquely focus on spatial trade-offs between diversity and productivity.

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Their sub-millimeter depth profiles, intriguingly, reveal a locally inverse relationship between species diversity and productivity. Higher levels of species diversity occurs in deeper strata, which were demonstrated to have low-net primary productivity. The experimental microcosm was derived from a benthic microbial mat native to Hot Lake in Washington State - ideal, the authors say, for studying relationships between productivity and diversity. Such mats have high bacterial diversity and pronounced gradients of chemical and physical properties within the spatial layers.