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Five Years of Experimental Warming Increases the Biodiversity and Productivity of Phytoplankton

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Category
General Reference
author-supplied keywords
keywords
authors
Gabriel Yvon-Durocher
Andrew P. Allen
Maria Cellamare
Matteo Dossena
Kevin J. Gaston
Maria Leitao
José M. Montoya
Daniel C. Reuman
Guy Woodward
Mark Trimmer
title
Five Years of Experimental Warming Increases the Biodiversity and Productivity of Phytoplankton
type
journal
year
2015
source
PLoS Biology
volume
13
issue
12
publisher
Public Library of Science
link
https://www.mendeley.com/catalogue/65fa2723-2f3d-3ae4-b480-a638ec2bcc98/(0)

Abstract

Phytoplankton are key components of aquatic ecosystems, fixing CO2 from the atmosphere through photosynthesis and supporting secondary production, yet relatively little is known about how future global warming might alter their biodiversity and associated ecosystem functioning. Here, we explore how the structure, function, and biodiversity of a planktonic metacommunity was altered after five years of experimental warming. Our outdoor mesocosm experiment was open to natural dispersal from the regional species pool, allowing us to explore the effects of experimental warming in the context of metacommunity dynamics. Warming of 4°C led to a 67% increase in the species richness of the phytoplankton, more evenly-distributed abundance, and higher rates of gross primary productivity. Warming elevated productivity indirectly, by increasing the biodiversity and biomass of the local phytoplankton communities. Warming also systematically shifted the taxonomic and functional trait composition of the phytoplankton, favoring large, colonial, inedible phytoplankton taxa, suggesting stronger top-down control, mediated by zooplankton grazing played an important role. Overall, our findings suggest that temperature can modulate species coexistence, and through such mechanisms, global warming could, in some cases, increase the species richness and productivity of phytoplankton communities.

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Identifiers

  • doi: 10.1371/journal.pbio.1002324 (Google search)
  • issn: 15457885
  • sgr: 84953255821
  • isbn: 1545-7885 (Electronic)1544-9173 (Linking)
  • pmid: 26680314
  • scopus: 2-s2.0-84953255821
  • pui: 607461870

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