3 years ago

Seed-dispersal interactions in fragmented landscapes – a metanetwork approach

Mauro Galetti, Marco A. Pizo, Augusto Piratelli, Suelen Moraes, Carine Emer, Paulo R. Guimarães, Pedro Jordano
Mutualistic interactions repeatedly preserved across fragmented landscapes can scale-up to form a spatial metanetwork describing the distribution of interactions across patches. We explored the structure of a bird seed-dispersal (BSD) metanetwork in 16 Neotropical forest fragments to test whether a distinct subset of BSD-interactions may mediate landscape functional connectivity. The metanetwork is interaction-rich, modular and poorly connected, showing high beta-diversity and turnover of species and interactions. Interactions involving large-sized species were lost in fragments < 10 000 ha, indicating a strong filtering by habitat fragmentation on the functional diversity of BSD-interactions. Persistent interactions were performed by small-seeded, fast growing plant species and by generalist, small-bodied bird species able to cross the fragmented landscape. This reduced subset of interactions forms the metanetwork components persisting to defaunation and fragmentation, and may generate long-term deficits of carbon storage while delaying forest regeneration at the landscape level.

Publisher URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/resolve/doi

DOI: 10.1111/ele.12909

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