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Do communities exist? Complex patterns of overlapping marine species distributions


Leaper, R and Dunstan, PK and Foster, SD and Barrett, NS and Edgar, GJ, Do communities exist? Complex patterns of overlapping marine species distributions, Ecology, 95, (7) pp. 2016-2025. ISSN 0012-9658 (2014) [Refereed Article]


Copyright Statement

Copyright 2014 Ecological Society of America

DOI: doi:10.1890/13-0789.1


Understanding the way in which species are associated in communities is a fundamental question in ecology. Yet there remains a tension between communities as highly structured units or as coincidental collections of individualistic species. We explored these ideas using a new statistical approach that clusters species based on their environmental response: a species archetype, rather than clustering sites based on their species composition. We found groups of species that are consistently highly correlated, but that these groups are not unique to any set of locations and overlap spatially. The species present at a single site are a realization of species from the (multiple) archetype groups that are likely to be present at that location based on their response to the environment.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:species archetype, ecological community, temperate rocky reef fishes, marine ecology
Research Division:Biological Sciences
Research Group:Ecology
Research Field:Marine and estuarine ecology (incl. marine ichthyology)
Objective Division:Environmental Management
Objective Group:Marine systems and management
Objective Field:Marine biodiversity
UTAS Author:Leaper, R (Dr Rebecca Leaper)
UTAS Author:Barrett, NS (Associate Professor Neville Barrett)
UTAS Author:Edgar, GJ (Professor Graham Edgar)
ID Code:93218
Year Published:2014
Web of Science® Times Cited:13
Deposited By:Sustainable Marine Research Collaboration
Deposited On:2014-07-18
Last Modified:2017-11-02
Downloads:380 View Download Statistics

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