Institute of Botany
of the Czech Academy of Sciences
the largest centre of botanical research in the Czech Republic
Determinants of local plant abundance: relative importance of fitness and stabilizing niche differences
|Determinants of local plant abundance: relative importance of fitness and stabilizing niche differences
Dostál Petr (researcher)
| GA ČR
|Coexistence theory views plant species abundance patterns as a result of species fitness differences (e.g., differences in competitive ability or fecundity) and of stabilizing processes. Species with higher fitness should dominate at the expense of species with lower fitness that should be locally rare or even competitively displaced. However, stabilizing processes, i.e. processes that decrease growth rate with increasing species relative abundance, maintain coexistence of species with different fitness.
In this project we want to assess the relative importance of differences among species in their fitness and stabilization for their local
abundance patterns. By including 32 species in a common garden experiment, we want to test whether species with higher fitness are on
average more abundant. We also want to test whether large variation in local abundance of species with higher fitness is due to strong
negative intraspecific interactions. Species locally dominant but with low variation in abundance are expected to display weaker intraspecific interactions.
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