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What drives detrital decomposition in neotropical tank bromeliads?

Abstract : Decomposition experiments that control leaf litter species across environments help to disentangle the roles of litter traits and consumer diversity, but once we account for leaf litter effects, they tell us little about the variance in decomposition explained by shifts in environmental conditions versus food-web structure. We evaluated how habitat, food-web structure, leaf litter species, and the interactions between these factors affect litter mass loss in a neotropical ecosystem. We used water-filled bromeliads to conduct a reciprocal transplant experiment of two litter species between an open and a forested habitat in French Guiana, and coarse- and fine-mesh enclosures embedded within bromeliads to exclude invertebrates or allow them to colonize leaf litter disks. Soft Melastomataceae leaves decomposed faster in their home habitat, whereas tough Eperua leaves decomposed equally in both habitats. Bacterial densities did not differ significantly between the two habitats. Significant shifts in the identity and biomass of invertebrate detritivores across habitats did not generate differences in leaf litter decomposition, which was essentially microbial. Despite the obvious effects of habitats on food-web structure, ecosystem processes are not necessarily affected. Our results pose the question of when does environmental determinism matter for ecosystem functions, and when does it not.
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Soumis le : mardi 23 juillet 2019 - 15:03:03
Dernière modification le : lundi 5 juillet 2021 - 10:10:07



Céline Leroy, Bruno Corbara, Olivier Dezerald, M. Kurtis Trzcinski, Jean-François Carrias, et al.. What drives detrital decomposition in neotropical tank bromeliads?. Hydrobiologia, Springer, 2017, 802 (1), pp.85-95. ⟨10.1007/s10750-017-3242-z⟩. ⟨hal-02191485⟩



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