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Original Research ARTICLE Provisionally accepted The full-text will be published soon. Notify me

Front. Plant Sci. | doi: 10.3389/fpls.2019.01371

INTERCONNECTEDNESS OF THE GRINNELLIAN AND ELTONIAN NICHE IN REGIONAL AND LOCAL PLANT-POLLINATOR COMMUNITIES

 Robert R. Junker1*, Martin H. Lechleitner1,  Jonas Kuppler1, 2 and  Lisa-Maria Ohler1
  • 1Department of Biosciences, University of Salzburg, Austria
  • 2University of Ulm, Germany

Understanding the causes and consequences of coexistence and thus biodiversity is one of the most fundamental endeavors of ecology, which has been addressed by studying species’ requirements and impacts – conceptualized as their Grinnellian and Eltonian niches. However, different niche types have been mostly studied in isolation and thus potential covariation between them remains unknown. Here we quantified the realized Grinnellian niche (environmental requirements), the fundamental (morphological phenotype) and realized Eltonian niche (role in networks) of plant and pollinator taxa at a local and regional scale to investigate the interconnectedness of these niche types. We found a strong and scale-independent co-variation of niche types suggesting that taxa specialized in environmental factors are also specialized in their position in trait spaces and their role in bipartite networks. The integration of niche types thus will help to detect the true causes for species distributions, interaction networks, as well as the taxonomic and functional diversity of communities.

Keywords: Biodiversity, Floral traits, Functional roles, impact, insect traits, networks, Requirement, Trait matching

Received: 04 Jan 2019; Accepted: 04 Oct 2019.

Copyright: © 2019 Junker, Lechleitner, Kuppler and Ohler. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Prof. Robert R. Junker, Department of Biosciences, University of Salzburg, Salzburg, Salzburg, Austria, robert.junker@uni-marburg.de