The roles of trophic interactions, competition and landscape in determining metacommunity structure of a seed-feeding weevil and its parasitoids

Marko Nieminen, Saskya van Nouhuys

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


    Community composition is determined by attributes of the environment, individual species, and interactions among species. We studied the distributions of a seed weevil and its parasitoid and hyperparasitoid wasps in a fragmented landscape. The occurrence of the weevil was independent of the measured attributes of the landscape (patch connectivity and resource availability). However, between habitat-patch networks, weevil density decreased with increasing parasitism, suggesting top-down control, especially in the north. Parasitism was mostly due to a specialist and a generalist that appeared to compete strongly. This competitive interaction was strongest at high patch-connectivity, perhaps due to a trade-off of local competitive ability and dispersal. Finally, the abundance of the generalist hyperparasitoid was unrelated to landscape or host-species abundance. The snapshot presented by these data can best be explained by top-down effects, interactions among species, host ranges, and patch con guration in the landscape, but not by local host-plant abundance.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalAnnales Zoologici Fennici
    Issue number1-4
    Pages (from-to)83-95
    Publication statusPublished - May 2017
    MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

    Fields of Science

    • 1181 Ecology, evolutionary biology

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