Seminar: Seed-dispersal interactions in a fragmented biodiversity hotspot - A metanetwork approach

  • Speaker: Dr. Carine Emer,  from the Conservation Biology Lab, at the State University of Sao Paulo (UNESP) of Brazil and currently doing a stay in the Group of Integrative Ecology of the Doñana Biological Station.




Photo: Carine Emer during the seminar (Author: Anna Traveset)



Esporles, October 23, 2017. Bird seed-dispersal (BSD) interactions repeatedly preserved across local forest fragments can scale-up to form a spatial metanetwork, functionally connected by shared interactions.


We explored the structure of a metanetwork of 16 fragments in the Atlantic tropical and subtropical forests of South America, to test whether a distinct subset of shared BSD-interactions may mediate functional connectivity in fragmented landscapes.


The metanetwork describing the distribution of interactions across forest fragments was interaction-rich, modular and poorly connected, indicating high beta-diversity and turnover of species and interactions.


Interactions in larger, less-disturbed fragments vanished in smaller areas (<10,000 ha), which, in turn, harboured distinct combinations of interacting species, generating geographic variation across large spatial scales.


Persistent interactions were performed by small-seeded, fast-growing plant species and generalist, small-bodied bird species able to move among fragments. We unveiled specific interactions as the metanetwork components functionally connecting forest fragments and persisting facing defaunation and fragmentation, possibly leading to long-term changes of forest structure.




Date and Time: Monday, October 23, 11:30-12:30h

Place: IMEDEA Seminar Room