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Synchronous and intermittent reproduction in long-lived plants, known as mast seeding, is induced by climatic cues, but the mechanism explaining variation in masting among neighboring but edaphically segregated species is unknown. Soil nutrients can enhance flowering, and thus, populations on...
Host-specific mortality driven by natural enemies is a widely discussed mechanism for explaining plant diversity. In principle, populations of plant species can be regulated by distinct host-specific natural enemies that have weak or nonexistent effects on heterospecific competitors, preventing...
Dispersal is a major and critical process in population biology that has been particularly challenging to study. Animals can have major roles in seed dispersal even in species that do not appear specifically adapted to animal-aided dispersal. This can occur by two processes: direct movement of...
Evolutionary history and physiology mediate species responses to climate change. Tropical species that do not naturally experience high temperature variability have a narrow thermal tolerance compared to similar taxa at temperate latitudes and could therefore be most vulnerable to warming....
Population abundance is negatively related to body size for many types of organisms. Despite the ubiquity of size–density scaling relationships, we lack a general understanding of the underlying mechanisms. Although dynamic models suggest that it is possible to predict the intercept and slope...
The persistence of mutualisms despite the strong incidence of exploiters could be explained if exploiters deny one or more services (i.e., cheat) while eventually supplying some subtler but critical services. Pulp feeders usually ingest fruit reward without dispersing seeds and thus are...
In tropical forests, resource-based niches and density-dependent mortality are mutually compatible mechanisms that can act simultaneously to limit seedling populations. Differences in the strengths of these mechanisms will determine their roles in maintaining species coexistence. In the first...
Some species have disproportionate influence on assemblage structure, given their numbers or biomass. Most examples of such “strong interactors” come from small-scale experiments or from observations of the effects of invasive species. There is evidence that entire avian assemblages in open...
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