Interlandi, S. J.. Drexel University, email@example.com
Kilham, S. J.. Drexel University, firstname.lastname@example.org
LIMITING RESOURCES AND THE REGULATION OF DIVERSITY IN PHYTOPLANKTON COMMUNITIES
Species diversity is a key concept in ecology, yet the mechanisms regulating diversity in most systems are poorly understood. To address this issue, we analyzed the relationship between phytoplankton diversity and limiting resources (Light, N, P, Si) over two summers in three lakes in the Yellowstone (WY) region. We discovered a strong positive relationship between diversity and the number of resources at physiologically limiting levels. Consistent with resource competition theory, we found the highest diversity to occur when many resources were limiting. Conversely, the lowest diversity occurred when few resources were measured at limiting levels. The relationship was strongest in the least productive system, and weakest in the most productive lake. Also, consistent with many prior observations, among lake comparisons yielded a significant negative relationship species diversity and system productivity.
Day: Thursday, Feb. 4
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