Journal article

Exploitation ecosystems and trophic cascades in non-equilibrium systems: pasture - red kangaroo - dingo interactions in arid Australia

David Choquenot, David M Forsyth

Oikos | WILEY | Published : 2013

Abstract

The exploitation ecosystems hypothesis (EEH) proposes that 1) plant biomass reflects the primary productivity of an ecosystem modified by the regulating effect of herbivory, and 2) herbivore abundance reflects the productivity of plants modified by the regulating effect of predation. Primary productivity thus determines the number of trophic levels in an ecosystem and the extent to which bottom-up and top-down regulation influence the biomass ratios of adjacent and non-adjacent trophic levels (i.e. trophic cascading). We constructed an interactive model of plant (pasture), herbivore (red kangaroo Macropus rufus) and predator (dingo Canis lupus dingo), a system in which trophic cascades have ..

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University of Melbourne Researchers

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Funding Acknowledgements

This study was funded by Landcare Research. We thank Roger Pech (who suggested using the normalized difference of the log response ratios to evaluate attenuation), Graeme Coulson, Lindy Lumsden, Mike Letnic, Arian Wallach, Carlos Melian and Dries Bonte for detailed and helpful comments on manuscript drafts.